The smell of roasting green chile wafts through the air as I eat a strawberry rhubarb crepe at The Downtown Grower’s Market, in Albuquerque. Working on Saturdays was not conducive to flower buying, coffee drinking, or people watching, but, after wrapping up the New Mexico portion of my latest movie and getting a full night’s sleep, I took full advantage of blue skies, cooler temps, and free time this morning. La vida buena. 

Farmer’s Market

Last night my fridge was looking a bit bare. I hadn’t been shopping in almost a week and what was left wasn’t looking that appealing. But, not wanting to go out, I decided to make something with what I had.

I pulled out kale that had gone from dark green to a lighter, yellow color, but was still good, a huge zucchini, some chicken sausage from the freezer, Parmesan, sage and rosemary from a flower bed outside, salt, pepper, and olive oil. These were all chopped, poured, and sprinkled into a pot and allowed to simmer over medium heat for about 30 minutes. Initially I thought I’d mix it with some pasta, but in the end it seemed at once both light and substantial enough on its own. With a glass of Pinot Grigio, it was quite delicious.

This morning I rode my bike to the downtown farmer’s market to replenish the goods. Though I try to branch out periodically, I am lured by the same farmers and items almost every week. I went for the mix of yellow and red cherry tomatoes, summer squash, kale, sunflower micro greens (!) and a loaf of cardamom fig bread that sounded too good to resist.

Upon returning home, I heard a story on the news about a stomach flu being linked to a salad mix grown in Mexico and served at several chain restaurants in the Midwest. It made me glad that the produce I just bought is produced on a small scale by people I see every week and only has to travel a few miles to be sold.