Bunches Thai chilies
About four to five times spicier than a jalapeño, but not quite as intense as a habanero, this variety is not intended for those sensitive to spicy food. Also known as a “bird’s eye chili” this variety is one that I most commonly encountered at produce markets, and in local cuisine, when traveling through Thailand many years ago. Used in curry dishes, soups, pickled, as well in an array of sauces, they deliver a very unique flavor profile under their hot presence. This week, I made a sweet Thai chili garlic sauce, the Fix of the Week. Ranging from green to red in color depending on their level of maturity, they are grown and sold by both the Her Family Farm and Moua Family Farm at both the Saturday Santa Barbara and Sunday Camino Real farmers markets while in season. Price averages $5 per bunch.
Pink Eureka lemon
One of the most unique finds at the market lately, these lemons possess a very unique yellow skin with splashes of green. Once sliced, the pink colored flesh is exposed. Used to make true pink lemonade or served sliced on the side with your fish dishes. A stunning presentation on the plate, this week I served them on a platter with salmon sashimi, pickled cucumbers and carrots. Also nice to float in water or to incorporate into cocktails. Grown by Rancho Vista Del Mundo and available at the Saturday Santa Barbara farmers market weekly. Price is 4 lemons for $3.
Sweet, crisp and juicy, this variety is recognized by its oval shape and pinkish-red hued skin. This late-season variety is a favorite with my kids, regularly finding their way on either their breakfast, lunch, or dinner plates. They also enjoy them frozen and eaten as a sweet treat, or incorporated into a fruit salad. Crimson grapes are currently available from select growers at all weekly Santa Barbara certified farmers markets for a limited seasonal window. Prices average $3 per pound.