Things to Look for in This Weekend's Farmers' Markets: Angelica, Sugar Snap Peas, and Lambs Quarter
Hollow-stemmed angelica is gorgeous, even if you have to scramble for culinary and herbal uses for it.
This is a particularly rich season for area farmers' markets, when foraged and cultivated plants are found side by side in profuse variety. The fervent interest of shoppers, and their willingness to spend money on unfamiliar botanicals, has resulted in more things available than we've seen in several years, and here are a few things to look for in the market that have been spotted in the last few days.
Angelica is classified as an herb, and the leaves can be used to make soup. The stem can be candied, too, but the most common usage is in tea as a folk remedy for flatulence, or as a mild stimulant.
Sugar snap peas are great eaten raw. Don't even think of shelling them; the peas inside are extremely small.
This is the weekend that sugar snap peas appear in abundance. After trimming the ends, you can eat the whole thing raw as a snack or as an addition to a salad, or poached briefly and smothered in butter.
Lamb's-quarter is a weed that makes an amazing salad, especially when dressed with a thick mustard vinaigrette.
Lamb's-quarter is a weed that is best eaten raw. It is one of the rare wild salad greens that doesn't have a bitter flavor.
We are also getting near the end of the spring asparagus crop. Definitely a great weekend for a vegetarian supper featuring salad, steamed asparagus, and fried potatoes, of which many varieties -- nearly all harvested last fall -- are available. Avoid those which are not firm to the touch.
Get the Food & Drink Newsletter
Our weekly guide to New York dining includes food news and reviews, as well as dining events and interviews with chefs and restaurant owners.