Edible Monterey Bay

WHAT’S IN SEASON

Crafty Condiments

PHOTOGRAPHY BY CRYSTAL BIRNS

With barbecue season in full swing, make healthier, more delicious accompaniments


Have you ever wondered why organic mayonnaise made with a healthy oil is so expensive or thought about how much ketchup your household goes through each month? Or how some sauce or spread really tied your meal together or improved a snack? Making your own condiments allows you to choose healthier oils, avoid unwanted ingredients and create custom spreads that are so delicious. All you need are fresh, local ingredients, high quality oil, garlic, spices and a high speed or stick immersion blender!

At Serendipity Farms I am always playing around with various herbs, fruits and vegetables in the kitchen and now sell nutrient-dense spreads, salad dressings, hummus, pestos and dips at the farmers’ markets, alongside our fresh produce. It is not complicated to make great tasting condiments. The summer bounty offers so many options for creativity and an opportunity to put up some of the best flavors that will add brightness to your meals.

RECIPES

MAYONNAISE AND AIOLI

RECIPE: JAMIE COLLINS
PHOTOGRAPHY BY CRYSTAL BIRNS

First you need fresh eggs, preferably pasture raised with nice bright yolks, and an oil of your choice that is liquid at room temperature. I like to use avocado oil because the flavor is neutral, but other neutral tasting oils include walnut, almond and macadamia nut. Olive oil is also good, but adds olive flavor, which is tasty but does not resemble traditional mayo like my childhood favorite: Best Foods. 

GARLIC SPREAD

RECIPE: JAMIE COLLINS
PHOTOGRAPHY BY CRYSTAL BIRNS

Many farmers are harvesting fresh garlic at this time of year, which is all the more reason to make my favorite simple garlic spread. You may also substitute leeks or onions in this recipe, but will need to cut them up in small chunks before roasting so the blender will be able to grind them up well. Toss 1 cup of garlic cloves or leeks in olive oil, or the oil of your choice. Roast until brown around the edges. Let cool and blend with 1 cup of oil, 1 teaspoon of salt. You can add honey mustard for an extra tasty spread, or some dried herbs or spices that you like.

PESTO SAUCE

RECIPE: JAMIE COLLINS
PHOTOGRAPHY BY CRYSTAL BIRNS

You can turn almost anything into a delicious pesto. In a high speed blender, add herbs, oil, garlic, an acid such as lemon juice, seeds (pumpkin, sunflower or hemp) or nuts (toasted pine, walnut or almond), salt and Parmesan cheese if you eat dairy. Otherwise, add nutritional yeast for a cheesy flavor. Aromatic herbs are in full swing during the summer. Good ones to make into pesto are basil, mint, dill, tarragon, cilantro, pea shoot and parsley. You can add vegetables like spinach, kale or arugula to bulk it up and increase the nutrient factor. There is no wrong way to make a pesto, just work with what is available, either using a single herb or various raw herbs and greens. In pestos, herbs and greens are never cooked.

FRUIT CHUTNEY

RECIPE: JAMIE COLLINS
PHOTO BY REBECCA LUNA ON UNSPLASH

Summer is the best time for stone fruit, and what a better way to savor the season than by making chutneys and barbecue sauces. Ask farmers at the market if they will sell their soft or bruised fruits that are typically pulled from the tables. Most farmers have a stash of fruit they would likely sell for a good price rather than compost at the farm later. If they don’t, ask for case pricing as there may be certain varieties they need to move. Chutneys are usually a freshly minced mix of both fruit and vegetables and are a refreshing side to fish or in place of salsa fresca. Try a piel de sapo melon from Happy Boy Farms, pair it with some cucumbers and fresh, raw sweet corn from Pinnacle farm, grab some cilantro, a red onion, jalapeño peppers, a few limes and some mint, add a dash of salt and it’s done—a tasty, fresh and interesting summer fruit chutney!

BLUEBERRY BARBECUE SAUCE

RECIPE: JAMIE COLLINS
PHOTO BY JOANNA KOSINKA ON UNSPLASH

Making barbecue sauce is similar to chutney but with a few different ingredients. I love making barbecue sauce out of fruit like blueberries or plums instead of tomatoes. I once made pulled pork sliders, slow cooked in a homemade blueberry barbecue sauce, which were topped with a mango fennel coleslaw on soft Hawaiian rolls for a birthday lunch. The guests all stopped talking. Fresh, homemade food will do that to people. Don’t you want to give it a go?

Local Foods in Season: June, July and August

FRUITS

*Apples • ****Apricots • Avocados • Blackberries • ****Blueberries *Boysenberries • Cactus Pears • **Cherries • Figs • ***Grapes • Lemons **Loquats • ***Melons • Nectarines • Olallieberries • Oranges • Peaches ***Pears • Plums • Raspberries • Strawberries • Tayberries

VEGETABLES

**Artichokes • Arugula • **Asparagus • Basil • Beets • Bok Choy • Broccoli Cabbage • Cardoons • Carrots • Cauliflower • Celeriac • Celery • Chard Chicory • Collards • Corn • Cress • Cucumber • Dandelion • Eggplant • Endive Fava Beans • Fennel • Garlic • Green Beans • Kale • Leeks • Lettuces Mushrooms • Mustard Greens • Onions • Pea Greens • Peas • ***Peppers, Bell Potatoes • Radishes • Spinach • Summer Squash • Tomatoes • Turnips

SEAFOOD

Abalone • Halibut, California • Lingcod • Rock Cod (aka Snapper,Rockfish) • Sablefish (aka Black Cod) • Salmon, Chinook/King Seabass, White Squid, Market Sole (Dover, Petrale) • Spot Prawns Tuna (Albacore)

*Comes into season in June **Ends in June ***Comes into season in July ****Comes into season in August *****Goes out of season in July

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