Farmer’s market inspiration for a vegan, gluten-free Menu Plan Monday

Every other week, when I don’t get my CSA box, I try to make it down to the marvelous farmer’s market by my house. This week I actually remembered to bring cash with me and stocked up on all kinds of delightful goodies. I am usually very strict with myself about not buying prepared food at the farmer’s market (it is usually way outside my budget) but there is one stand, Sinbad’s, that sells the most incredible Middle Eastern food. Their baba ganoush – already one of my favorite foods – is divine, full of smoky chunks of eggplant in a smooth, perfectly seasoned base.

Mujadara, chopped salad, falafel, and Sinbad's baba ganoush

The market had plenty of eye candy this week – gorgeous squash blossoms, mountain-grown blueberries, incredible peaches and nectarines from Kashiwase Farm. Kashiwase had out a huge display that let you taste twelve different kinds of peaches and nectarines. The Honeygold nectarines (I think that’s what they’re called – definitely “honey” in the name) taste like honey, but like the honey that the gods drink on Mt. Olympus.

This was the first time I’d been to the market on an overcast day – the whole place looked different without the usual awnings, and my favorite table of Asian greens at the end of the market was alive with motion, all the leafy veggies flapping in the strong wind. I bought eggplants – several sizes and kinds, so happy to see them in the market at last. Strawberries, peaches, and nectarines. Chinese broccoli, a gorgeous head of cauliflower, a huge bunch of fat stubby carrots, and some pickling cucumbers for my long-delayed Russian meal.

I am barely scraping this menu together this week, so sadly I fail on the Gluten-Free Menu Swap ingredient-of-the-week. This week it is almonds and almond flour, chosen and hosted by Cheryl of Gluten Free Goodness, all around great cook and organizer of our GF menu swap. If I weren’t rushing about I would be all over this theme as I love cooking and baking with almond flour, but sadly I’ll just have to be satisfied with hungrily checking out what everyone else is doing.

And, as always, you can find a world of menu plans over at the giant MPM compendium at OrgJunkie!

Mujadara (lentils and rice with caramelized onions)
Homemade falafel
Chopped salad (tomato, cuke, red onion, sugar snap peas)
Baba ganoush

Vinegret (Russian beet and potato salad with dill)
Kasha with home-fermented cabbage and carrots
Pickling cucumbers

Soft polenta layered with steamed Chinese broccoli, kidney beans, and mushroom tomato sauce

Udi’s GF pizza crust with garlicky beet greens, broiled eggplant, and tomato
Butter lettuce salad with citrus vinaigrette

Three sisters stew with leeks (Fresh Food Fast p105)
Arepas (Fresh Food Fast p105)

Hot pockets with eggplant caponata filling (using Flying Apron pocket recipe)
Hot pockets with Indian sweet potato and cauliflower curry filling

Zucchini and black bean quesadillas with chipotle salsa (FFF 85)
Chilled cucumber and mint soup (FFF 87)

Vegan plum clafouti
Roasted peaches with labneh made from soy yogrut (FFF 138)

For $22 at the farmer’s market I got:
Huge bunch of carrots
Medium globe eggplant
pint strawberries
4 pickling cukes
3 nectarines
2 peaches
head cauliflower
bunch chinese broccoli
4 large japanese eggplants