Summer’s arrived over here

Spring is the time when blossoms, tulips and daffodils fill our gardens.

How do you define summer?

  1. you wear a tee-shirt and shorts
  2. sweat drips down your back after a walk to the corner
  3. your swim suit and towel are always wet
  4. you have to switch on the AC in your car
  5. you buy iced lattes at Starbucks
  6. picnics
  7. peaches and cherries at your local farmer’s market

I think it’s all the above. What do you think?

You may be interested to learn that I was able to answer in the affirmative for all the above items this week [It was 85 degrees today, so I went swimming] and after seeing the bounty at our local farmer’s market last Sunday, I feel I can say summer has arrived in Southern California.

Come let me show you the farmer’s market …

Studio City farmer's market

Studio City farmer’s market Sunday April 28

I bought a bunch of sweet peas at the market. Their scent takes me right back to my childhood home where they grew on the verandah wall each spring, and the fragrance from multiple arrangements of freshly cut sweet peas and roses filled the house.

I don’t get excited to see apples or pears in the fall (do you?), but I can act like a kid when I see the first peaches and plums, cherries and apricots.

Strawberries and citrus don’t make my heart sing

Cherries and peaches do :D

Three kinds of asparagus, a large variety of squash, and squash blossoms

If you’ve never eaten dandelions this is an excellent time of year to try them.

They are rich in vitamins and minerals. Their bitter flavor stimulates digestive function, from the stomach down to the intestines, including stimulating bile production in the liver.

DSCN3102

Click here for a great recipe of dandelions and shiitake mushrooms.

We bought eggs “from the happiest chickens in town“, and tried a bottle of Rebecca Smith‘s Cold Brew Coffee

In the cold brew process we grind the beans, soak them in water for 18-24 hours, then filter out the beans to get the coffee concentrate.

To prepare: mix 1 part coffee to 2 parts milk, add some ice, and voilà, a cup of iced coffee that’s not bad.  I’ve had some every afternoon this week. :D

At the Studio City farmer’s market kids ride a merry-go-round pulled by real ponies… and  last weekend Snow White popped in.

 I took all the photos last Sunday

NOTE:

It’s not just hot, its dry, and unfortunately there’s a serious fire burning just north of the city.

The Springs fire, which started Thursday around 6:30 a.m., has scorched more than 18,000 acres between Pacific Coast Highway and the 101 Freeway.

Winds continue to push the flames southwest when single-digit humidity, temperatures in the high 90s and wind gusts of more than 40 mph fed the fire that consumed dry old brush that hasn’t burned in over 20 years.

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63 Responses to Summer’s arrived over here

  1. Beautiful post, beautiful photos, and it makes me sad.
    That is my market – or would have been if life had been different.

    I could use a cup of Secret Squirrel coffee right about now. Oh! And are those guys with the incredible booth full of spices that threaten to blow away in the wind still there???

    • dearrosie says:

      It makes me sad to know I’ve written a post that leaves you feeling sad. Although this isn’t the time for you to be shopping at that market, you still have such strong connections to it that I feel something else will bring you there – perhaps your passion for honey

      oh my how funny that you remember those guys who display their spices in large open bowls. I’ve never bought anything from them and can’t imagine why people would buy their spices when they’ve been exposed to the hot sun and wind!
      I’ll photograph it next time I go :D

      • Oh don’t worry, it’s turned into more of a nostalgia. It’s no use crying over spilled relationships :)

        I wrote about that market a year ago, and I included a photo of those dudes and one of the honey vendors. I love that you’ve chosen completely different photos than I did – it gives me a different perspective. Thank you!

      • dearrosie says:

        Of course you’d photograph the honey guys – we didn’t need honey this week so I didn’t visit him. Though I’ve always stared at the dudes I’ve never photographed them…

  2. dadirri7 says:

    what a treat to see your farmers market rosie …. oh i do love the scent of sweet peas :) … and yum for fresh asparagus …and i love the merry go round with real horses!

    • dearrosie says:

      Hello Christine,
      There are farmers markets every day of the week and throughout the year but so many people who live in S. California tell me they shop at the supermarket. You cannot compare those tasteless supermarket peaches that are bred to travel long distances in refrigerated trucks with a freshly picked peach where the juice runs down your arm…

      I love watching the little ones going for the pony rides. I very often get more pleasure from seeing the faces of their parents and grandparents. :D

      So nice to know that as well as 11:11 sightings we both also love the scent of sweet peas. They are so prolific the more you pick them the more they produce but they don’t last long so I guess that’s why you don’t see them in regular florist shops and why they are so expensive.

  3. lucky you to have summer already. here in London Spring is very shy this year….

  4. frizztext says:

    yes green asparagus we eat now!

    • dearrosie says:

      Its good to remember that even though my blogging buddies live in different countries and often speak different languages we have common foods on our dinner plates. I think that’s an important first step to world peace.

  5. How about – you go through the bathroom cupboard to find last year’s left over sun screen.

    • dearrosie says:

      Hah hah Andrew that’s so funny. You don’t have to satisfy yourself with last year’s sunscreen – I’m only too happy to send you some real hot sun. So via a special meditation I learned at the Seeds of Peace conference last month I can sprinkle a big handful of hot sunshine over to you there in England. I hope you can feel it?

      btw it’s already cooler and rain is predicted for Monday. That will be nice – I can’t remember the last time it rained.

      • Hi Rosie

        It hasn’t rained a great deal here either over the last few weeks and I am spending long evenings watering the garden pots.

        Next week I am travelling to Turkey where you wouldn’t expect rain in May but the weather forecast says – take an umbrella! I am still taking the factor 30 just in case.

      • dearrosie says:

        I’m surprised to hear that you haven’t had much rain. I don’t think you often need to water your pots do you?
        You’re going to Turkey next week? Sheesh lucky you! Its another one of those countries I want to visit. Where are you going? Its such a huge country – there are two places I’d like to see – Istanbul and the cave city (forget what its called).

      • dearrosie says:

        oops Andrew I meant meditation and see I wrote mediation. You must have wondered what on earth I was trying to say…

  6. You all have been in my thoughts with the Santa Ana winds blowing and fires so close to the 101.

    • dearrosie says:

      Those Santa Ana winds are powerful. Yes its nice to be warm in the winter but there’s always the chance of fires and we all suffer from allergies when they blow

  7. lexiesnana says:

    Lovely post and you made me hungry just looking at all the fresh produce!

    • dearrosie says:

      We are so fortunate to be able to shop for our produce in farmers’ markets like these. Do you have farmers’ markets in your neighborhood lexiesnana?

      • lexiesnana says:

        Yes we do but we mostly grow our own in the backyard. I live in the thumb of Michigan and it is mostly farmland. Our markets sell fresh produce and honey and sometimes crafts in the summer. Your pictures were making me excited about ours opening up.

  8. Madhu says:

    I was about to say 85 degrees is balmy weather when i saw your note. Hope the situation is under control now. Your photos are so fresh and delightful Rosie. Have never seen a merry-go-round pulled by real horses before :-)

    • dearrosie says:

      I can understand that 85 degrees must sound like a very pleasant temperature to someone living in your part of the world, but this in the beginning of May, and I think our temps are supposed to be in the ’70’s. The Santa Ana winds which blow in from the desert bring the hot winds.

      Gosh you’re so kind Madhu. I’m very honored to get a complement on my photos from you.
      When I first decided to take the photo of the merry-go-round there were kids on every pony, but by the time I got my camera out and positioned myself in a spot where I was only photographing each kid from the back, all but one kid had finished their circuit and come off. I should have waited for it to fill up again, but I didn’t want to ask Mr F to wait…
      What do you do when you need to wait for a particular shot?

      I understand that we sometimes need more time to capture certain photographs – what Cartier-Bresson calls the “defining moment” – so next time we go to the market I’m going to ask Mr F to do the shopping and I’m going to see whether I can capture the wonder of the kids on the merry-go-round and the pride on their parents faces.

  9. Oh, that market and all those berries and fruit! I wish…! But it will come here too in about two months…

  10. Mahalia says:

    I am honoured to have my dandelion recipe featured!
    I love farmer’s markets, and envy southern california’s long growing season(s), for sure. But, I am confused: asparagus and peaches at the same time?? Here asparagus is June (or late May), and peaches are August. A question for you: were there nettles for sale?

    • dearrosie says:

      I hope some of my readers go check out your recipe. :D

      I didn’t see nettles. I’ll look for them tomorrow.

      Your question is a good one but I’m not sure I can answer why we get our asparagus and peaches at the same time. We just do… We can buy asparagus ALL year long at our farmers markets – and I think it’s because some of the farms at the higher-cooler elevations somehow just keep harvesting it – but just thin asparagus. Its only in the spring that we can get this kind of variety.
      Peaches? You’ll be eating California peaches at your supermarkets in the next couple of weeks but as you’re so much further north it takes longer for your peaches to ripen.

  11. sybil says:

    Thanks for the trip to the market. Spring has finally arrived here and it’s summer there ! Hope the rain puts out those awful fires.

  12. nrhatch says:

    Summer is here too . . . I love living in t-shirts, shorts, and flip flops. :cool:

  13. shoreacres says:

    I’m amazed you have cherries already. They must be from the San Joaquin Valley – way too soon for the Pacific Northwest. Do keep your eye out this year for the Orondo Ruby cherries – a variety much like the Ranier, but larger, sweeter and oh, so good! I wouldn’t kill for a box of those cherries, but I’d be tempted to run over little old ladies. (What? I am a little old lady? Oh, well.)

    I went to the farmers’ market this morning and got: yellow squash, green beans, cabbage, strawberries, collards and leeks. It won’t be long until the tomatoes and okra are in. And the blackberries and blueberries. Yum!

    Other than the food, what is summer? Heat, and more heat. Oh, and I did I mention the heat?

    • dearrosie says:

      I didn’t ask the cherry farmer the whereabouts of his farm – some of the farmers come from as far away as Sacramento which is over 5 hours away.
      We do sometimes buy the Pacific Northwest cherries at Trader Joes so I’ll keep a look out for the Orondo Ruby variety and let you know when I see them.

      Your shopping basket is almost the same as ours except I don’t often buy collards. How do you cook them?

      I would imagine that your summers must be darn hot and humid . I don’t do well in the humidity.

      • shoreacres says:

        I’m not sure which video you’d chosen, but try this. Go back to the video. Under the video, click on “Share”. A bit of highlighted code will pop up in the box. Copy that.

        Then, come to your blog and enclose that copied code in between brackets like this:

        [ youtube=(insert video code here) ] There shouldn’t be any spaces between the brackets and the text, though. I left some here to try and fool the editor into not erasing what I typed. We’ll see if it works.

  14. You did a great job of showing our spring/summer, Rosie! I think we’re supposed to get a little light rain beginning tomorrow night. It isn’t going to help us with any drought conditions, but maybe it will help with the fires. This particular Farmer’s Market looks wonderful. We have a nice one in Pasadena on Saturday and I am always very satisfied, but we do NOT have pony rides! I feel a little cheated. :-) Thank you for the dandelion recipe. I’m glad to have one. Our weekly produce box often includes them and I’m never quite sure what to do with them. I’m glad to have an option!

    • dearrosie says:

      I was so surprised to wake up this morning and see it was chilly and so windy. I hope it rains tonight. We really need it.

      I’m glad to introduce you to the Studio City farmers market Debra.

      One of my favorite markets is on Sierra Madre Blvd in Pasadena on Saturdays – not too far from you. I love it because its such beautiful location with the mountains right behind it (I often take out of town guests there).

      I’m looking forward to your feedback on the dandelion recipe. She has several other great recipes on her site.

  15. Super cool stuff .. we’ve been getting real chilly weather in Atlanta (which I love) so it feels like summer is miles off… California dreamin’ … xoxoxo b

    • dearrosie says:

      No more swimming for the time being – the hot Santa Ana winds have gone back to the desert where they belong, and we woke up this morning to a cool, blustery day with rain predicted this evening.

  16. wow, what a great post! yes, i think your temperatures were higher than here in ecuador today! you win! cherries? you win! let’s see, what did i buy today? four grapefruit for fifty cents, and twenty lemons for fifty cents…. you definitely win – my shopping day was boring, as i was tired and ready to get home! z

    • dearrosie says:

      hola amiga nice to see your name here. Next time please come inside for a glass of vino and some cherries… :D

      Its not in the 80’s today. We woke up to a cool overcast blustery day and there’s rain predicted for tomorrow. I hope it rains – I don’t remember the last time it did.

      You bought TWENTY lemons and FOUR grapefruit for how much? Good lord you win
      amiga.

      • hey! i wish i could step inside and enjoy a glass of vinos and cherries with you; i’ll remember to bring ecuadorian chocolates if i make it there on the magic carpet!

        yes, the sweet little man always gives me great prices on produce, and i never ask for special prices, just ‘how much, ‘and he is almost always lower than the neighbors. lemons are three for ten right now, and i was happy to get four for ten!

        z

      • dearrosie says:

        A glass of California wine with some cherries and Ecuadorian chocolate sounds like my idea of a good time. You don’t have to knock -the door is open…

        What a sweet man to give you a special price on produce. I can’t imagine buying three lemons for ten cents in LA….!

        btw Have you heard from Katherine and Sara yet?

  17. Arindam says:

    Rosie Auntie, it’s 112 degree here. So you can guess how painful it must be for us to hear that summer arrived at our part of world. :)
    As always I loved your pictures!! And I am sure you must be enjoying the summer there, after seeing such freshness in farmer’s market at your place.

    • dearrosie says:

      Your temperature is really that high, and its only May 5th? My goodness Arindam that’s *H*O*T* I hope you’re keeping cool on your verandah! Do you drink ginger tea in the summer too or only in the winter?

      I’m happy to know you enjoy seeing my pictures. Do you have similar vegetables at your farmers markets?

      • Arindam says:

        Yes Rosie Auntie, I drink tea in summer too but not the ginger one. :)
        And yes we too have quite similar vegetables available here.

  18. frizztext says:

    “…unfortunately there’s a serious fire burning just north of the city…”
    +
    take care of you – I hope, God will send some helping angels!

  19. Robin says:

    Summer has never been one of my favorite seasons, Rosie. Except… the food is SO good! Your beautiful photos are making me yearn for summer which might be a very good thing since I suspect summer is in the early stages in Maryland right now. Northern Ohio, where I’m still located for a few more days, is in the latter stages of spring although we do have frost warnings for next Monday and Tuesday. That’s typical. We usually don’t plant until after May 15th. The one thing that screams late spring here is the asparagus. My asparagus bed is producing a bumper crop this year. Even though I packed up the kitchen last weekend, we’ve been feasting on fresh asparagus every day. I’ve been roasting it in the oven, and finding creative ways to season it with stuff in the fridge (since we already packed up all the spices). This might be the first year ever in which I grow weary of eating asparagus before it’s time to stop picking.

    • dearrosie says:

      As far as I’m concerned there is nothing as satisfying as a picnic feast of summer fruit :D

      I’ve had vegetable gardens over the years but have never had the pleasure of growing asparagus. I think it must be wonderful to eat it freshly picked – but I do understand that anything in excess can become boring.
      Can you explain how our local farmers can grow asparagus all year long? I’ve asked a few farmers at the farmers market but I don’t understand their explanation.

      • Robin says:

        I wish I knew, Rosie. There are some farmers who grow it under domes year round, but I don’t know how they keep it in a state of growth/ready to pick. My asparagus usually gets exhausted within 4-6 weeks, signaling it’s time to quit picking it. (The spears get thinner and thinner.)

      • dearrosie says:

        I guess that’s it – the spears are very thin in the winter.

  20. Now I’m envious! Summer’s my favorite month. It’s time to head for the beach and yes, those much awaited fun vacations. Time to do overtime hours too to finance my trips. Have a great weekend.

    • dearrosie says:

      I also love summer. It’s a happy carefree time and all we have to do is plan our trips to the beach and prepare our picnics… I hope you don’t get sick from all those overtime hours!

  21. munchow says:

    Summer already? Here where I am the spring has hardly started. Yesterday is the first day I noticed a few trees were just about to burst into leaf. I guess we are a little behind – even compared to normal years. Fun to stroll around in your farmer’s market. Great pictures.

    • dearrosie says:

      sorry I didn’t reply earlier – I hope summer’s started by now?
      Do you remember the night-blooming cereus that bloomed on my patio last year? It only flowers for that one evening? Its produced another flower that is just about to open. You’re invited to come see it.

      • munchow says:

        Don’t worry about being late with your reply. I am often much later myself. Besides I thought you were taking a break from blogging? Anyway, yes, I do remember the night-blooming cereus – and would have love to see now. But since it’s only blooming one evening, I might have a hard time getting there before it’s all gone…

  22. Sartenada says:

    Wonderful summer photos. It was a great joy to enjoy them now when fall has arrived here.

  23. The farmer’s market looks very enticing, Rosie! We definitely should visit one while I’m there, if there is such a thing in winter! I know California winters are not equal to Virginia winters, but still…. That asparagus looks wonderful and I too love the scent of sweet peas. :-)

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