Green Gazpacho, Farmer’s Market Dinner On-the-Fly, Fennel

My family was on our way to dinner at Lloyd Martin, but as we drove along Queen Anne Avenue we quickly realized that it was Farmer’s Market night in Upper Queen Anne. Split-second decision: Indoor sophisticated dining or fresh fruit, cheese and who knew what else on the grass? On a sunny evening in Seattle, how could you pass up the latter?

I wasn’t even finished precariously parallel parking when my daughter bolted out of her car seat and onto the sidewalk because she saw a friend from camp. As we walked along the stalls, she collected about five or six more school and camp pals and they joyfully ran off to play tag along the hillside at the bottom of the market as we contemplated what dinner should be. A pint of fresh raspberries was a no-brainer. But with all the food trucks at this particular farmer’s market, the decisions got harder. A chicken “Indian Taco” topped with cole slaw from Off the Rez we knew we couldn’t go wrong with, but we took a chance on Holy Cow’s “Indian-inspired fast-food” and were kind of disappointed by a lackluster Tandori chicken in a cup (but they did have a great Tamarind Lemonade). Everyone seemed to be eating slices of Veraci pizza; we chose Pepperoni, so greasy that it ran onto – and stained – my white leather cowboy boots. Everyone else’s looked delicious though, so I think we just ordered badly. A raspberry vanilla soda from The Soda Jerk was yummy; a mom I knew grabbed me one while I watched over the kids.

By the time we wrangled my daughter away from her herd, we were stuffed – but we still had to shop the market. My mission was to get cucumbers (in season now) to make Green Gazpacho this weekend. There’s a recipe from Wednesday’s Seattle Farmer’s Market Organization’s email that I’m going to work with, so stay tuned to hear how it goes next week.... My plan is to try and incorporate some of the beautiful Fennel bulbs that are also on show at local markets this weekend. Happy Summer Market Foraging! (P.S. I hear they’re teaching how to mix cocktails from farm produce at the Broadway Farmers Market from 12-2 on Saturday. Not sure if I can make it, but let us know if you do!)

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