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THE FRONT BURNER

FLS reporter Katie Thisdell serves up news on local food finds, tales from home cooks and inspiration to help you have fun in your own kitchen.

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In Season: August

Here’s our monthly feature on what to look for in area farmers markets. For more vegetable-specific ideas on using seasonal produce in your kitchen, take a look through the archives of our “What’s Coming Up” feature, which ran last year in Food.

August: It’s been hot for so long now that we’ve forgotten what it’s like to not start sweating before 10 a.m. But relief is on the way. Along with the pencils, notebooks and other school supplies in the stores, other signs of fall will start to pop up at farmers’ markets this month. Local apples and the first hard squash of the season appear alongside summer favorites like watermelon, canteloupe and tomatoes. August and September are both great months for local eating because they combine the best of summer with a hint of what fall has in store.

Apples

Blueberries, blackberries, some raspberries

Cantaloupe

Cucumbers

Green Beans

Grapes

Zucchini and yellow crookneck squash

Bell peppers

Eggplant

Okra

Sweet corn

Watermelon

Peaches, nectarines

Tomatoes

Some varieties of winter squash, toward the end of the month

Ideas for the kitchen:

  • Make a frosty watermelon granita: Blitz watermelon chunks in a blender with sugar to taste and a bit of lemon juice. Pour into a wide, shallow container. Freeze for three hours, taking the container out to rake the frozen bits every hour. Then scrape the treat into serving dishes. Garnish with mint or lemon slices.
  • To freeze okra for storage, first submerge it in boiling water for two minutes, then quickly dunk it in ice water. Remove the pods to a freezer-safe container, where they may be stored for up to a year.
  • Make a quick, cold summer salad with sliced cantaloupe and cucumber, plus a salty bite from feta cheese, kalamata olives or strips of prosciutto. Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste.

Look for next month:  Pumpkins

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