ARRIVALS & DEPARTURES: During June, donut peaches make their debut in San Francisco while asparagus heads out of New York (photos added to the MarketWatch Photo Pool by Flickr users beurremanie and Ferryplaza).
MarketWatch is a monthly report on what's fresh and new at farmers' markets in New York and San Francisco. If you've visited a farmers market recently in your own community, tell us what's new in the comments. And, if you have photos, be sure to post them to the MarketWatch flickr pool.
Epicurious features an interesting interactive map that indicates the peak season for produce state-by-state. Select a month, click on a state, and the tool automatically provides a list of what's fresh where, along with links to recipes featuring those ingredients. Naturally, all the recipes are from the epicurious database, but it's not a a bad way to start getting ideas for what to cook with your farmers' market bounty.
NEW YORK: UNION SQUARE GREENMARKET
The big news is the arrival of peas. "June is the month of peas," Greenmarket's Gabrielle Langholz told me over the phone, followed by the exclamation, "Yummy!" Sugar snap peas arrived last week, and shell peas and snow peas are just arriving now at the market. Alas, June is the only month for peas, so get them now before they disappear.
Another June specialty which just arrived this past Monday are garlic scapes, the curly flowertops of the garlic plant. The green, succulent scapes are entirely edible (they taste like garlic, only mellower).
Lettuces are presently abundant, and strawberries, which finally emerged in small supply in late May, are now flourishing.
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Prepara claims that its Herb-Savor will prolong the life of fresh herbs for up to 3 weeks. Designed to fit inside a refrigerator door, the gadget contains a refillable water base to help forestall wilting. It may also be used to store asparagus. $29.95 at prepara.com.
Latte Art Throwdown
On Thursday, June 5th, 8:00 p.m., baristas from Joe (9 East 13th Street) and several of the city's top coffee shops (including Ninth Street Espresso, Gimme Coffee, Cafe Grumpy, Everyman Espresso, and Gorilla Coffee) will compete in "a head-to-head contest in the traditional latte art throwdown style: one shot, one pour, no second chances." Judges include Time Out New York Eat Out Editor Gabriella Gershenson and Counter Culture Coffee's Katie Carguilo, with Adam Roberts (The Amateur Gourmet) as emcee. A suggested donation of $10 will support the work of the American Red Cross in Myanmar and China (rsvp: MEISTER@BIYNYC.COM).
James Beard Foundation Awards
Time magazine has deemed them "The Oscars of the Food World." The James Beard Foundation Awards recognize excellence in all aspects food and beverage industry, and are considered the highest honors for food and beverage professionals working in America. This year's awards ceremony will be co-hosted by actress Kim Cattrall and chef/restaurateur Bobby Flay. The theme of the reception is "Artisanal America: the Craft of Cuisine." The awards will take place at Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center (Columbus Avenue and 65th Street) on Sunday, June 8th, at 6:00 p.m. Reception gala will immediately follow the awards ceremony. Sunday's event is preceded by an awards ceremony for journalists and media on Friday, June 6. Tickets: $450/non-members, $400/members, $200/press.