We know two things to be true: A farmers market is a beautiful thing. We are wide-eyed, greedy creatures. The combination? Frantic Sundays spent clomping around with four buckets of assorted berries, three totes filled to the brim with leafy greens, and two egg cartons balanced on our heads, shouting joyfully, unabashedly to our designated farmers market buddies that “HENRY HAS ESPECIALLY PERFECT-LOOKING PEACHES TODAY, DO YOU THINK WE SHOULD MAKE PIES, GALETTES, AND COBBLERS THIS WEEK? OR MAYBE WE COULD SEND ALL OF OUR NEIGHBORS’ KIDS TO SCHOOL THIS WEEK WITH THREE-TO-FOUR SNACK PEACHES EACH DAY? I DON’T KNOW, WHAT DO YOU THINK? LET’S PROBABLY GET SIX DOZEN JUST IN CASE.”
It’s not our fault! Fruit is just so pretty. Vegetables are majestic things. Clutching piles of produce with nothing but hopes and dreams and possibilities ahead is just totally fucking joyful. And the aesthetic? Please!
Serious Eats / Amanda Suarez
…And then, it’s Sunday again, and nobody’s kids wanted peaches this week (…weird kids!), nor did you have time to make any pies, galettes, or cobblers, let alone feed yourself much more than a total of four of the eggs and one of the squashes. And you didn’t want this to be the case, but alas. It doesn’t stop you from going back.
You head to the market, shaken, with plans to compromise, but undeterred.
You are us. We are you. And we made the decision—for us, but also for you—to head into all future Sundays with game plans for the day and the subsequent six days. Not only does it lessen waste (a topic on which we could publish many, many packages), but it also allows us to get as close as possible to produce perfection.
So welcome to our “You Hauled the Whole Farmers Market—Now What?” undertaking. We spent time ripening produce that oftentimes over-ripens before you’ve gotten a chance to try it at its best. We spent even more time keeping that produce alive at its peak ripeness! We infused a lot of things at their most flavorful into water in order to help you do the same! We baked………so many fruit-centric desserts. So many. But we pickled some too!
Get into it. Have a blast! See you on Sunday. I’ll be the one (with a written-out strategy) whisper-screaming ecstatically about peaches.
How to Ripen and Store Your Produce
Luxuriating in and taking pictures of produce is an art; getting whatever you bought to its peak ripeness at exactly the moment you need it to be gorgeous, fresh, and, well, ripe, is a science. We spent more than a month with lots and lots of fruits and vegetables to determine how you should treat each for maximum shelf life. Happy produce-buying! And picture-taking!
How to Store and Ripen Peaches: Timely ripeness is tricky with these sweet, fuzzy babies. Here’s exactly how to handle peaches so that you don’t have to eat them all at once, standing over your sink with the juices dripping down your chin…though that’s always a good time, too. How to Store Cherries: Another finicky drupe that too often devastates with bruises and tracks. Cherries require hustle and fridge space—more on how to prep yourself for them (and, sure, how to prep them, too) here. How to Store Green Beans: An easy and fantastic staple you can plan for a week out…if you treat them well and leave them to their own devices. Mostly. More on proper green bean treatment here.
How to Hydrate With Your Produce
Water? Important! Also water? Boring! Our senior culinary editor Leah created three bright, fruity, and gently herbaceous versions of water using foolproof, punchy, and painless extraction and infusion techniques. Head into next week’s trip to the farmers market with a plan in place for hydrating, but, like, in a fun way.
How to Make Cucumber Water and Other Fruit Infused Waters: Infusion 101, plus a new take on a sleepy classic. You’ll never have to chew your water again!Blackberry, Grapefruit, and Sage Infused Water: Yes—a water recipe! Gorgeous and subtle, refreshing and nuanced. Plum, Thyme, and Fresh Chile Infused Water: A sure-to-be staple at all your forthcoming summer gatherings, this impressive combination hits on something for e-v-e-r-y-o-n-e.
Playing With Produce (Or: Mostly Baking With Peaches, But Also Baking With Berries and Pickling With…Rinds)
The simpler, the better, but still the absolute best. Enjoy these produce-focused recipes, all of which were developed with maximum fruit and flavor impact in mind.
Strawberry Shortcake Recipe: A classic that deserves your finest strawberries—and your finest cream. The latter of which you should also totally pick up at the farmers market, but this is a produce-focused editorial undertaking!!Pickled Watermelon Rind Recipe: Daniel’s favorite childhood snack comes to life on-site. Easy like Sunday morning…at the farmers market, after the farmers market, all around the farmers market? Easy!Peach Crisp Recipe: Per Genevieve, this recipe is “good enough to warrant turning on the oven in the middle of summer.” She’s right—it is.Serious Eats / Amanda Suarez