Favorite Recipes Featuring the Freshest Farmers Market Finds
August 2023 Issue
By Leslie Rohland
Photography by Lucy Rosen
August is the perfect month to take advantage of the bounty of fresh, local, summer produce, and there’s no better place to find the juiciest, ripest, and most flavorful fruits and vegetables than at your favorite local farmers markets. Each year, National Farmers Market Week is celebrated during August (6th-12th). This week reminds us that by supporting local farmers markets, we are also supporting our local farmers. The week highlights the important role farmers markets play in providing people with delicious, locally-sourced food. In addition, farmers markets bring the community together putting fresh, local, and healthy at center attention. That’s especially true here in the Lowcountry, where our plentitude of farmers markets offer a huge assortment of locally grown, in-season produce, as well as fun, weekly community gatherings that showcase local growers and food vendors.
There are so many benefits to shopping at a farmers market. For starters, farmers markets give you access to produce which is picked at its peak of flavor, without the travel time between being picked and being available for sale. Usually, produce sold at farmers markets is picked or harvested just a day or two before, or even the morning of, the market. This allows fruits and veggies to stay on the vine to ripen longer and then burst with flavor in your favorite recipes.
Sweet corn, beans, tomatoes, basil, summer squash, zucchini, peaches, and raspberries are peaking to perfection, which will happily bring your family to the dinner table. Here are just a few of my favorite recipes featuring the freshest summer produce from my favorite farmers market. I bet these are likely to become summer family favorites of yours, too!
Crispy Market Green Beans
2 ripe Tomatoes, diced
1 to 2 lbs Green beans, trimmed and dried
4 Tbsps Extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp Garlic powder
1 tsp Kosher salt
1/2 tsp Pepper
1/2 tsp dried Thyme
1 tsp dried Basil
1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
4 Tbsps grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 425°F. In a bowl, toss the green beans and tomatoes with olive oil so it completely coats the vegetables. Spread the mixture onto a large baking sheet and season with garlic powder, salt, pepper, thyme and basil. Sprinkle the panko and parmesan on top. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until the green beans are tender. Transfer to serving bowl and serve hot.
Farmer’s Corn Toss Salad
2 ripe Tomatoes, diced
2 ears Corn on the cob, cooked then kernels removed
1 tsp Pepper
1/2 cup Cotija Mexican cheese, crumbled
Kosher salt, to taste
2 Tbsps Extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp Old Bay seasoning
1 small Sweet onion, chopped
1 tsp Kosher salt
Fill a large pot half full with water and bring to a boil, season it generously with salt (should taste like the ocean). Add extra flavor by adding some Old Bay seasoning to the water, too.
Once the water is boiling, add the corn cobs and boil for 4 to 5 minutes, until they are bright in color. Remove the cobs, and let cool. Once cool, slice the kernels from the cob and set aside.
In a serving bowl, toss the corn kernels, tomato, onion, and cheese in the olive oil. Add Old Bay, salt and pepper. Add the mixed greens and toss again.
Summer Shrimp & Vegetable Pasta Salad
1 lb. Orecchiette pasta, (shaped like little ears)
½ cup Extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsps Garlic, chopped
1 large Yellow squash, cut into ½ inch cubes
1 large Zucchini, cut into ½ inch cubes
2 Tomatoes, diced
Fresh Spinach, as much as you like
16 Local shrimp
1 bunch fresh Basil, chopped (save some for garnish)
½ tsp Kosher salt
½ tsp Pepper
Parmesan cheese, for garnish
Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain and set aside in a large mixing bowl. In a large sauté pan, add olive oil and garlic and gently roast the garlic.
Add the squash, zucchini, tomato and spinach and sauté about 5 minutes, just until tender. Season with salt and pepper. Add the shrimp and basil, and cook until shrimp are cooked through, about 5-7 minutes.
Now mix the pasta and veggie/shrimp mixture by either adding the pasta to the large sauté pan or spooning the veggie/shrimp mix into the pasta in the bowl. Toss thoroughly. Allow it to chill, about 30 minutes.
Portion the veggie/shrimp pasta into serving bowls and top with Parmesan and small slivers of basil.
Peachy Razz Strawberry Crisp
For the Filling:
7-8 sliced fresh Peaches, skin off
1 pint fresh Raspberries
1 cup Sugar
2 Tbsps Flour
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp ground Ginger
2 tsp Lemon juice
For the Topping:
1 cup Flour
½ cup Oats
½ cup Brown sugar
½ cup Butter, room temperature
1 tsp Cinnamon
Vanilla ice cream
Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly spray a 9 x 9 baking pan or pie dish. Gently mix the fruit with sugar, flour, spices and lemon juice and place the mixture in the dish.
In another bowl, cut together the topping ingredients with a pastry blender or mix together with your fingers till well combined. Sprinkle over fruit.
Bake 40-50 minutes or until the topping is golden and filling is bubbly. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.
Leslie Rohland, owner of the Cottage Cafe, Bakery and Tea Room in Old Town Bluffton, is an award-winning recipe creator who is known for her delicious and ever-changing menu at her extraordinary restaurant. She is also the owner of the popular healthy eatery The Juice Hive and the micro-roastery May River Coffee Roasters. For more information about The Cottage Cafe, visit www.thecottagebluffton.com or call 843-757-0508.