Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Webb City Sentinel column - 8/19/11

You like potato and I like potahto;
You like tomato and I like tomahto…*

Whatever your pronunciation, the Webb City Market currently has a wonderful selection of tomatoes and potatoes. Big ones, little ones, “ugly ones” and more. Same goes for peppers, onions, eggplant, and cucumbers! And they all taste great!!

As you probably know, the tomato is one of the best-loved and most versatile ingredients. We use them in so many ways – freshly sliced or diced, sautéed, stewed, grilled and even baked. Tomatoes are extremely healthy and low in calories. You can literally eat all you want!!

Here’s a favorite vegetable dish that takes advantage of tomatoes along with many of the current market vegetables:


Heat 3 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 medium eggplant, peeled and diced, and season with salt and pepper. Sauté until browned, juicy and cooked through (10-12 minutes). Transfer to a medium saucepan with a slotted spoon.

Add another 2 tbsp oil to the skillet and sauté 1 diced onion, 1 small diced green pepper, 1 small diced red pepper, and 1 small diced yellow pepper until tender-crisp ( 3-5 minutes). Transfer to the saucepan.

In another 2 tbsp oil, sauté 3-5 minutes 2 small or 1 large diced zucchini and 2 small yellow summer squash, diced. Transfer to the saucepan and add 2 diced ripe tomatoes, and 4 diced cloves of garlic. Also add 1, 8 oz can of tomato sauce or puree and a little chopped basil or oregano.

Simmer 15 minutes over medium heat. Season with more salt and pepper. Flavor will be enhanced if cooked ahead and reheated. Try this dish, you will love it. It makes the perfect side dish for any of the locally raised, grass-fed meats sold at the market. This Friday take advantage of delicious bison and elk offered by Flintrock Ranch . On Saturday, Green Elm Farm may still have lamb (it has been selling like crazy).

“There’s no greater summertime pleasure than fresh peaches,” says TV Chef, Mr. Food. Amen!

Peaches are in their prime and Pate’s Orchard is selling them like crazy. You might also find fresh blackberries at the market. And melons are showing up in greater and greater quantities.

Here is a simple but unusual recipe for peaches, kindly provided by Pate’s Orchard.

Easy Peach Cobbler

Slice fresh peaches to cover the bottom of an 8 x 8 baking pan.

Cut crusts from 5 slices of white bread and cut into fingers.

Lace the bread fingers across the top of the peaches.

Mix 1 c. sugar, 1 stick of melted oleo and 2 Tbsp flour. Pour all over the bread fingers and peaches. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes until topping is brown.

Market Events

On Friday August 19, lunch from 11-1 p.m. offers spaghetti w/ meat sauce, salad, garlic bread, chocolate fluff & drink for only $6. The urban forester, Jon Skinner with the Missouri Department of Conservation, will be at the market to answer your tree and shrub questions. Granny Chicks will be playing toe-tapping music.

Saturday, August 20, from 9-11 enjoy the benefit breakfast of biscuit, gravy, sausage, coffee or OJ with market eggs to order supporting Crime Stoppers. Dan, the Birdhouse Guy, will also be paying a special visit with his unique birdhouses made from tornado debris. Erick Brown will be our featured musician.

Tuesday, August 23, the Cooking for a Cause lunch benefits Healing the Family Counseling Service. Gary Kyger will provide musical entertainment.

*Song by George and Ira Gershwin, "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off," 1937.