Saturday, July 01, 2006

Tomatoes: the Good and the Bad

After Porkchop left for the park this morning, I headed out to the Soulard Farmer's Market, where I picked up tomatoes, peaches, beets, and a cantaloupe. The market was fine, except it wasn't what I expected, or maybe I should say, wanted. I wanted Madison's farmer's market. Instead, I got a cross between Detroit's farmer's market (which is pretty cool) and the flea markets outside of Naples, Florida (not so cool). I didn't expect flip flops, bing cherries, bananas, or shrimp....obviously, none of which is locally produced.

I know, I'm picky about my farmer's markets. I was also put into a bad mood because a 12-year-old picked out the tomatoes I decided to purchase. He was working at his family's stand and didn't realize that I wanted to pick out my own tomatoes, darn it. And I was too passive aggressive to say anything.

After being called "babydoll" by the peach lady, I left and decided, Screw these tomatoes, I'm going to check out the Tower Grove farmer's market. Amanda and I went a few weeks ago and were a little disappointed in the lack of selection. Well, I'm happy to report it has blossomed a bit more. There is definitely more selection, or maybe I was just glad to see local organic produce.

I ended up buying a box of little Roma tomatoes and a single heirloom. Here's a picture of all my tomatoes - the ones in the back two rows are the 12-year-old's selections....I think I'll use those to make a soup (doesn't chilled tomato soup sound really good right now?). {Also, I apologize for more poor quality pics. Seriously, I need to go to picture-taking school or something. They look okay small - just don't enlarge them, okay?}



Oh, and the best thing about the Tower Grove market is the recently added crepe stand! Yay! To celebrate my tomatoes, I had a savory crepe with pesto, mozzarella, and tomatoes. Even though the crepe was a bit burnt in places, it was still super-good. As I ate it, I watched the kids and adults play in the wading/fountain area of the park. Nice.

After dropping my produce at home, I decided to head to an Italian grocery on the Hill to pick up pine nuts, olive oil, and bread. For pine nuts and olive oil, I went to DiGregorio's. Oh my, I spent $20 on olive oil! I didn't want a $4 bottle, and there wasn't much in the $10-$20 range. Wow, they even had a $60 bottle...it was like being in a wine shop. I also spied a $25 bottle of balsamic vinegar that I might have to go back for. Before she moved out of Madison, our pal Val gave us some balsamic vinegar that she picked up in Italy...after having it, I can't eat the cheap stuff, and we ran out of it a little while ago.

Next, I went to Vitale's Bakery (sorry, no website to be found) for fresh baked bread. I also picked up a little container of spumoni gelato, which I'll share with Porkchop tonight. Oh my, I'll have to make my way back to Vitale's sometime...so many cookies, biscotti, and good looking treats.

Also, I don't want to sound like an out-of-towner, but I want to go to Milo's Bocce Garden. I've never played bocce before, and when there's an Italian-American Bocce Club near you, I think you should.

After doing all of my food things today, I went to Hartford Coffee Company, hoping to catch some knitters, which I did. There were 3 other ladies knitting (summer time is bad for knitting circles, I fear), who were quite pleasant. Oddly enough, a summer-intern-reporter at the Post-Dispatch also stopped by to interview young knitters for some sort of human-interest story she's doing. So, maybe in a couple of weeks, I'll be quoted in the Post-Dispatch!

Well, there's basil to be harvested and pesto to be made. Have a good night!

2 comments:

Porkchop said...
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Porkchop said...

Meanwhile at Six Flags... Porkchop sits sadly at her drawing table thinking about all the fun that Carrie is having without her.

Murrrrr!!!