Posts Tagged ‘falls church farmers market’

A is for Apple #KidsCooktheBooks

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2015

Happy fall! While our weather still feels a bit summery, we are all about the apples at the farmers market right now. We are so lucky to have some truly awesome orchards in the greater DC region. One of our favorites is Black Rock Orchard from Lineboro, Md., found at our neighborhood markets (Falls Church on Saturdays, Westover on Sundays) every weekend. They grow a wide variety of apples and the kids and I love discovering which ones are new each week. Our current apple-crush-of-the-week is the Ruby Jon, a delicious semi-sweet and, as implied by the name, ruby red apple.

ruby jon apples |

I also love discovering new books featuring apples, and below are a couple of our favorites to inspire you and your little ones to 1) go apple picking and 2) bake something scrumptious!

A is for Apples |


Apple by Nikki McClure

The Apple Pie Tree by Zoe Hall

How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World by Marjorie Priceman

Apple Days: A Rosh Hashanah Story by Allison Sarnoff Soffer


Apple Hand Pies

Apple Celery Soup

Apple Sausage Skillet Cornbread

Apple Cider Doughnuts


You can find some of our favorite places to pick apples in Virginia here.

How have you enjoyed your apples lately?

FRESHFARM Week: Meet The Mushroom Stand

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

I’ve written about mushrooms a lot, but haven’t properly introduced our source: The Mushroom Stand, or Mother Earth Organics from Pennsylvania. Ferial Welsh, better known as The Mushroom Lady, can be found each week at FRESHFARM Penn Quarter or Dupont Circle patiently explaining the difference between her numerous mushroom varieties and offering cooking instructions. I first seek out the stand in early spring for those coveted wild morels, but the cultivated mushrooms are available nearly year-round. More frequently, we buy my son’s favorite, tiny honey mushrooms. But shitake, maitake and others make an occasional appearance on our dinner table as well.

the mushroom stand freshfarm markets

Try The Mushroom Stand’s mushrooms in some of these favorite recipes:

Find The Mushroom Stand at FRESHFARM‘s Dupont Circle and Penn Quarter markets, and at the Falls Church Farmers Market.

PS Obviously that is not a recent photo… but I couldn’t resist a flashback to cooler times as we suffer through 100 degree days here in DC this week.

At Market: What to Make with Garlic Scapes

Wednesday, May 30th, 2012

It warms my heart around this time each year when my old garlic scape recipes suddenly see a spike in traffic — because it means people are hitting the farmers markets and trying something new. Garlic scapes, or curls, as our CSA farm calls them, are one of those things you won’t find in the grocery store.

garlic scapes

The early shoots of the garlic plant, they pack a potent punch and crisp bite. I like to thinly slice them and toss ’em in salads or scrambled eggs. Garlic scape pesto is a classic and easy way to jazz up pasta or chicken salad. My garlic scape chimichurri makes a great topping for grilled bison steaks. You can throw the whole scape on the grill, too. I’ve even quickly blanched them, cut into 1-inch pieces, and frozen them for stir-fry use later in the year. And I keep meaning to make garlic scape vinegar (perfect for salad dressings) — maybe this year I’ll finally get to it.

How do you like your scapes? Do you grow your own garlic?

kohlrabi broccoli and greens

I made a quick stop at the Falls Church Farmers Market this past weekend for Memorial Day grilling supplies, where I spotted the scapes pictured above. There were a couple other new arrivals at market this week, including kohlrabi nearly as large as bowling balls, broccoli and sugar snap peas a plenty. Coming soon: English peas and sour cherries.

{At Market} Strawberry Horchata

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

I still can’t believe how early strawberry season began this year. We got our first Virginia berries of the year at the Falls Church Farmers Market last weekend, and a few more this weekend. The foodie tots have been ecstatic. The first week, they downed a pint at breakfast as soon as I returned from the market. This past weekend, the toddler went with me and somehow managed to leave strawberry stains on the front and back of her t-shirt, and stroller seat, just while snacking on a few as we shopped. (She was also a big fan of the fresh mini cider doughnuts from Mama’s Donut Bites, new at the market this year. Also spotted: asparagus, ramps & morels — the locavore’s holy trinity of spring.)

falls church farmers market, april

I’ve been wanting to make horchata, a frothy rice-based drink I first tasted in L.A., for an embarrassingly long time. Like, since my last trip to L.A. In 2009. Ahem. Anyway, the drink is simple enough to make but requires advanced planning and patience as the ground rice and water must soak overnight. So it’s a good opportunity to give the kids a lesson in delayed gratification. It’s a fun recipe for kids who enjoy pressing the buttons on the blender, too. It’s lighter than a smoothie and its sweet, refreshing taste goes well with spicy tacos.

While some recipes call for almonds, I chose one that used only rice to keep things simple. I added fresh strawberries which helped sweeten the drink, so it requires less added sugar. (If your berries are very sweet, you may get away with using even less sugar.) You may be tempted to taste the preliminary soaked rice concoction …. (I confess, I did it.) If you do, don’t despair. The drink vastly improves once sweetened. I don’t plan to let another three years pass before making this again — in fact, I’m already envisioning sipping a watermelon version on the deck later this summer.

strawberry horchata @foodietots

Recipe: Strawberry Horchata
adapted from A Wooden Nest


  • 3/4 cup long grain white rice
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 cup cane sugar
  • 1 cup fresh strawberries, hulled
  • 1 cup whole milk


1. Place rice in blender and grind to a fine meal. Add to water in a pitcher, drop in cinnamon stick and stir to combine. Refrigerate for at least 8 hours, preferably overnight.

2. Pour mixture back into the blender and blend until cinnamon stick is finely chopped. Pour through a fine mesh strainer, pressing on the rice solids to extract as much liquid as possible. Discard solids.

3. Return strained mixture to the blender and add sugar, strawberries and milk. Blend on high speed until well combined and frothy. Chill before serving.

Makes 4 servings.

Can’t wait overnight? Try our Strawberry Agua Fresca recipe.

Worm Wednesday: How to Start an Herb Garden

Wednesday, May 11th, 2011

Perhaps you don’t have enough room, or time, for a full-size garden. An herb garden is an easy way to dabble in gardening and can be done on a window sill, porch or anywhere where you can stick a pot. Planting an herb garden is a good project for young kids, as it can be done in about 10 minutes — just find a container, pour in the potting soil, dig a little hole for each plant, and gently plop it in. Voila! And unlike seeds, there’s no wait time before you can use the plants.

I have a rectangular planter on my deck rail, for easy dinner-time access from the kitchen. A larger pot on the deck holds extra rosemary (purportedly a natural mosquito-repellant) and several varieties of mint for those refreshing summer cocktails, er, beverages.

virginia grown herb plants

If you want to make sure you’re getting organic herb plants, take a look at the farmers market. Many farmers are offering herbs this spring as they wait for their other crops to come in. We picked out sage, thyme and rosemary (above) from Medina & Sons this past weekend at the West End Alexandria market — the Falls Church farmers market has several plant vendors, including our ecoganic CSA Potomac Vegetable Farms.

Check out this Middle Eastern Stuffed Pita recipe from Aviva at PBS Kitchen Explorers for a tasty way to use your home-grown mint.

What herbs are your kids growing? Do they eat them?

Worm Wednesday” is a new feature here to highlight the enthusiasm kids have for gardening.  If you’d like to contribute, send me a picture and description or story of your garden to, and you could see your garden here on Foodie Tots!