by JB Del Campo, Assistant Market Manager, Prescott Farmers Market
The cold season is around the corner, and the question we hear most this time of year is, “What do local farmers grow in the winter?”
Our growers choose cold-hardy crops, and use a variety of season extension techniques such as cloth row covers, greenhouses, and hoop houses, which keep frost from damaging crops.
Here’s a sampling of what you can expect to find this winter: leeks, potatoes, beets, radishes, carrots, salad mix, parsnips, spinach and kale. Our local growers also have special varieties of vegetables that you won’t find at your grocery store. Look for sunchokes, watermelon and daikon radishes and måche at the farmers market.
Sunchokes are a species of sunflower that are cultivated for their tubers (roots). When raw, they have a nutty, sweet taste and a crunchy texture. The tuber is great when grated or shaved in salads, and can be roasted and pureed into a delicious soup.
Watermelon and daikon radishes are as beautiful as they are delicious. Slice them for a spicy addition to your salad, or spruce up that veggie tray at your holiday party.
Måche is a small leafy green with a sweet taste and velvety texture, making it an ideal addition to your green salad. There’s more to explore at the market, so stop by this winter and fill your bags with all this fresh, local loot!
Make Your Own Sunchoke Fries
- 1 pound sunchokes
- 1/2-3/4 cup olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- Salt to taste
- Chopped herb of your choice (parsley, thyme, rosemary etc.)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Wash sunchokes and cut out eyes. Cut into 1-inch pieces. In a large bowl, whisk together olive oil, garlic, salt and herbs. Toss sunchokes in olive oil mixture then place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake in oven until tender and crispy, about 30-40 minutes.