Last month, I was so psyched at the thought of returning to summer in New Mexico. Blue skies, plenty of sun, mountains to climb, trails to ride, tomatoes to grow! If only. If only, I thought then, we had a farmers market nearby. The closest venues required a drive north to Albuquerque or south to Belen. Stuck in the middle, we were.
And then our dear neighbors, V & J, told us the news: our very own county would start its own farmers market. Where? At River Park on the Rio Grande, right at the junction of the bosque trails where I ride my bike several times a week.
And so we made a date. Several dates. The four of us. Every Tuesday. Bikes, trails, edibles (followed by dinner and wine).
We pedaled our way to opening day this week and discovered an array of potted herbs and vegetables, ready for the garden. Next week, Jerry will bring the bike with a rack on back (he has three bikes for different purposes; he’d have another six or seven if money allowed, and he’d build his own if time permitted).
But this time, I toted my goodsâ€”blackberry habanero jam, prickly pear cactus jelly, fresh peas, two types of chard, beets and greensâ€”on my back.
Tonight, I cooked the beet greens using a Georgian recipe from Laura Kelley’s book-in-the-works, The Silk Road Gourmet. Volume One in her series covers a lot of ground: Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka. We’re talking 400 pages of recipes here. Stay tuned, as I’ll be writing more about this book soon. (The beet greens, by the way, were divine, thanks to two critical ingredients: butter and nutmeg.)