Summer is the best season at the farmer’s market. Whenever we travel, Tom and I always go to the local one to assess the quality of cuisine we’re in for at a location. In L.A. where it’s always summer, we have a choice of Studio City or Hollywood Farmer’s Market every Sunday with a cornucopia of fresh seasonal organic produce. The Studio City market is a few minutes from our house and is always a good bet for great quality fruit and veggies. The Hollywood one is very glamorous. We go there whenever a recipe calls for special heirloom ingredients. Steps from the Hollywood Walk of Fame, it’s where all the L.A. chefs come to shop for their restaurants. We always see lots of food photographers with long lenses and expensive cameras hovering over unique and interesting produce varietals. Filmmakers in big hats and dark sunglasses carefully pick over Apache apricots and Amaranth spinach while marveling over fragrant leek blossoms.
Organic garbanzo beans are the protein base for my vegan summer salad with everything else preferably in heirloom and local varietals. Let the market and its artisans guide you with their wisdom.
Summer Salad Recipe – serves 2
1 cup green summer squash, cut into half moons
1 cup tomatoes, diced
1 small red onion, sliced
1 cup canned or cooked garbanzo beans, strained
½ cup cooked corn kernels
1 cup micro sprouts
5 large basil leaves, chiffonade
1 orange, sliced or supreme
1 orange, juiced
2 Tbsp Extra Virgin olive oil
“Fleur de sel” sea salt and ground black pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients in a large salad bowl. Mix well and serve.