Market Fresh

The summer to end all Northwest summers continues. Extraordinary warmth and low rainfall means that peaches and nectarines are still pouring into the markets, while the first apple varieties are already piling up. The Macintoshs this year are the best in living memory, with classic Gravensteins not far short of them. You could eat a different melon variety every day and not repeat yourself for weeks, and this year's crop is remarkable both for size and sweetness. The unbelievable sustained heat means that we're getting local corn as good as the folks in Iowa get juicy, bursting with milk, sweet enough to eat raw. Peppers and tomatoes and eggplants vie for your attention in a rainbow of colors. Get out that recipe for ratatouille! Yet somehow, unbelievably, there's still sweet leaf lettuce to be had, with baby winter squash appearing on the same tables. It's inexplicable. It's a blessing. Use it while you can.

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