Also commonly labeled with multiple alternatives, including “snake” beans, these long slender beans average from 12-18 inches in length and deliver a very distinct green bean flavor with an underlying bitterness.
Yardlong beans are often stir-fried in Asian style preparations. I love to sauté them with seasonal vegetables and tofu, toss them with a little soy sauce and sweet chili sauce, and serve them over steamed brown rice.
This week I prepared grilled yardlong beans as the Fix of the Week on the next page. They pair quite nicely with grilled steak, chicken and fish.
In Chinese cuisine, the China Long bean is traditionally pickled with Sichuan peppercorns, garlic, ginger and star anise.
You can expect to find yardlong beans over the next few months from both Her Family Farm and Moua Family Farm and the Saturday Santa Barbara and Sunday Camino Real Marketplace farmers’ markets. Price averages $3 per large bunch.
Spring Flame Yellow Peach
This early season variety is just one of dozens of types of yellow peaches you can expect to find at the weekly farmers’ markets throughout the year. This clingstone variety of peach is excellent to eat as it comes, incorporated into a fruit salad or served sliced on a breakfast plate. Delivering a nice acid-rich flavor, this round, medium-size peach possesses a stunning scarlet color across its skin. And it’s quite juicy.
You can find these yellow spring flame peaches from several California fruit growers at most weekly Santa Barbara certified farmers’ markets. Price averages $3.50 per pound.
Blood orange and tangerine Juice
This has been one of my most enjoyable weekly finds at the Saturday Santa Barbara farmers’ market lately, brought in freshly squeezed from Friends Ranches’ of Ojai.
From the orchard to the juicer, this blend of tangy blood oranges and sweet tangerines yields a dynamic flavored juice, a favorite with my kids in the morning. The deep red color is quite attractive as well. They’re also excellent for use in house-made margaritas or other citrus-based cocktails.
Add this juice to a smoothie or use it to make a citrus reduction sauce for seafood preparations. You can also incorporate the juice into a salad dressing.
Price is $4.50 per pint or $14 per half gallon.