Tuesday, September 24, 2013

A Sunday Stroll that is Yellow and Green & Everything In Between

Yellow and Green aren’t Fall colors, but on the lips of my South Florida friends as the harvest season begins and the largest farmers market in Broward gets underway, opening its doors from 8 to 4 every weekend. I don’t know if you can tell from the picture, but it’s worth a thousand words, pared down into one simple FYI: did you know you can hop a train to the Yellow Green Farmers Market in Hollywood? Of course, you can drive too; it’s on Sheridan Street, but if you’re a big fan of greening up your kitchen and saving gas, give Tri-Rail a try. The Sheridan train-stop sports some great signage that points in the direction of the Farmers Market, and it’s a very short walk from there to all kinds of things you won’t want to miss.
When you walk in, the first thing you’ll notice is the HUGE mural of a farm, created with such realism that you’ll swear you can hear someone ringing a dinner bell somewhere beyond those big bails of painted hay. There are dozens of aisles of giant, low-priced fruits and veggies, and to anyone who isn’t used to the tropics that might seem strange. But, hey, October through January is our growing season! You can pick up a big canvas tote at the general information booth (next to the spicy, gourmet pickles) where a smiling woman can tell you in English, Creole or Spanish that the Yellow Green Farmers Market is celebrating its first anniversary this October. The tote bag seems big, empty and deep, and it’s your objective to fill it! In the meantime, here’s a little preview of what’s in store.
Olive oil, olive oil and MORE olive oil—but you’re the master of infusing it with whatever flavors you see fit. For $8, I filled a bottle with dill, lemon, garlic, cilantro and basil infused oils—but that was a safe bet. This corner of the farmers market had wasabi and many other flavors (like “Steak”), too. They had buckets and buckets of big juicy olives that you could sample—and a small restaurant, where people were sampling wines and ordering harvest soups, even on a warm day.

I went from that outpost to another manned by a Jamaican Farmer, who let me taste Breadfruit, lychees and assorted Caribbean produce that I’d never heard of before. I did know about dragon fruit, and appreciated that he had halved some of it, so that customers could see how awesome it looks inside. I’ve included a photo of it below.

I left with about 3 pounds of pre-sliced jackfruit and a mental note to try deep frying that slightly bitter (but buttery!) breadfruit; the farmer had offered me a slice, raw, and I didn’t care for it—yet I could see his point that it would be fabulous if I deep fried it. This is a Sunday Inspiration if ever there was one!
But I think my favorite table was the salt table, pictured here.
The vendor encouraged us to sprinkle whatever we wished to try over small cups of roasted corn; I bought an ounce of black truffle salt that tasted….well….to say “heavenly” wouldn’t do it justice. I’d have to say it was over-the-moon-curl-your-freaking- toes-good, and  can’t wait to add it to every winter soup and salad I make for myself while I’m back in my Florida home town.

If you want to meet me there, at the Yellow Green Farmers Market one of these Saturdays or Sundays, look for me at the station where they squeeze fresh Tamarind juice. We can have some refreshment together and hit all the stops with our big yellow green bags!            
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