The Ardent Epicure

An Ode to the Pleasures of Food

Farmers' Market- 
TAE's Shopping Spree and Snacks 

This was the first time that all three of TAE team ventured of in search
 of organic and local treasures. This was also our first visit to this particular
farmers' market.  The location is at the Orange County Great Park in
Irvine California. And this is one large market let me just say...

Offering a wide variety of both locally grown produce, nuts, dried fruits
cooking oils and vinegar, wines, smoked fish, coffee and teas to
freshly baked treats. Now if this is not enough for you, how about a
large array of gourmet food trucks to choose from or maybe some hand
made crafts.

To finish off your trip to the market, what about a Hot Air Balloon ride or
maybe join the kids on the Carousel. There is  also live music to be
enjoyed and various educational events for the kids.

As you can see here, the list of produce and other goodies is 
a long one. We took home a few other treats as well...
The snacks:
Some natural dried pineapple and low sugar dried cantaloupe.
For our nut selections we chose freshly made almond butter,
roasted hazelnuts and mixed pistachios of lemon, jalapeño
and garlic/chili pepper. Then of course a variety of freshly made
hummus and pita bread along with some marinated baby mozzarella.
Oh, and I almost forgot...a few mini bunt cakes to wash it all down with.

The cranberry beans were gorgeous. These are actually a newer variety
of the cranberry bean know as Crimson the shelled  bean is tan with crimson
colored splotches or streaks. 

The two images that you see at the bottom of the above
collage are two new finds for me. On the left is Red Amaranth an Asian
vegetable similar to spinach. The gorgeous red stripped green leaves and
are commonly used in stir fry dishes, soups or in salads.

The next new find on the right is Water Spinach ( Ipomoea aquatica)
a semi-aquatic leafy vegetable also called "Chinese spinach". The
flavor is similar of that to a milder or baby spinach. This is another
vegetable that is commonly used in Asian stir fry dishes. This leafy
veggie can also be added to salads raw or wilted in the same way
you would treat a common spinach. 

My very favorite finds were the Coffee Chefs Soup Bar and one
of the most fantastic teas I have ever encountered. The tea is a Cucumber
Mojoto Green Loose Tea. I used this tea as a base for a sorbet that was
published here on Honest Cooking if you want a sneak peak :)
Hangar 244
Coffee & Tea

Alisha ~ Magic of Spice

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