It's a little strange talking about "Fall" in Southern California, but while the weather is not extreme, we do have seasons. And we see it in our local produce. Today at the market we got our first taste of Fall; a foot in the door or the nose under the tent...just a whiff of Fall. The apples got me:
Tomatoes are still out and looking fantastic~
There is some late summer fruit (green plums, amazing!)~
but the apples stole the show, even these, first-pick, not shined. One of my favorite restaurants in NYC would have many vintage baskets filled with fresh apples lining the foyer in the Fall; they offered a fragrant and colorful welcome similar to these; Apples are beautifully American, to me. And while I love France, I am always first an American and remain proud of that.
Many of the store-bought apples you will find are put in cold storage for up to a year. The texture turns mealy when they are cold-stored. These fresh apples will be fine in your basement for several months. I have decided to do apples and antlers for my holiday decor this year, so when I get back from France I will be buying my supply from Lone Oak. This was my display basket today, Gala apples from Lone Oak~
Sage Mountain continues to be one of my favorite vendors across the markets; these are some kind of special small peaches that I forgot to ask about, but the colors are great for fall~
there are some squash that are transitional, and make us feel like cooler weather too~
Sage's array of Onions also felt like a touch of fall today; they made me want to go home and cook up something hearty~
or maybe it is the torn-burlap look that I love? Worn burlap makes even the humble onion look great!
For the flowers, the last fantastic pile of squash flowers today; there are so many micro-climates in the area, and many variations between the growers~
For the cut flowers, summer Dahlias are giving way to fall colors~
and we had our first ornamental kale, which I rely on heavily in Fall~
When I got home, I made 4 jars of strawberry sauce with tiny wild-ish very-late-season berries from Sage Mountain, darkened a little with last week's blackberry sauce.
And what of the apples? We had a large tarte on Pepp Farms puff pastry, sprinkled with vanilla sugar from my friend at Tahitian Gold. Their vanilla paste and vanilla sugar are the best; well, all of their products are pure and fantastic.
a short time later, this was all that was left; the Sweet Tooths in residence loved it with vanilla ice cream before their afternoon nap. The apples were amazing to cook with and tasted so fresh.
Have a wonderful Labor Day weekend....