UNION SQUARE — In late October and early November, you can enjoy the best of two seasons at the greenmarket. Heirloom tomatoes, peppers and zucchini are still piled high in farmer’s stalls, while turnips, pumpkins and brussel sprouts start appearing amid many, many decorative gourds.
Farms such as Carradona, Migliorelli and S & SO Farms are fully stocked with the summer staples along with radishes, beets, onions, leeks and garlic, while smaller stalls such as Eckerton Hill Farm, Rogowski Farm and Tamarack Hollow Farm brought some unique finds to market.
Here we review the more unusual selections on offer at the greenmarket now.
Yukina Savoy — Sold at multiple stands at the greenmarket, this uniquely-textured Asian green is described as a cross between kale and spinach and has a mild flavor. The leaves and stems can be eaten raw in a salad or prepared in any of the ways you might prepare kale or spinach — steamed, stir-fried, sautéed or added to soups.
Watermelon Radish — Spotted in the Tamarack Hollow Farm stall alongside heirloom tubers like the green meat radishes and gold ball turnips, the watermelon radish is named for its green exterior and bright pink center. These radishes are less peppery than their supermarket counterparts and can be braised or roasted like a turnip or thrown into salads for an extra bit of color. You can even pickle them. For our guide to pickling anything, click here.
Jerusalem Artichokes — This week Rogowski Farm brought their first batch of these tubers to market. Neither related to Jerusalem nor an actual artichoke, this low-starch veggie — which is also sometimes referred to as a sunchoke — has a taste similar to that of an artichoke and can be used as a substitute for water chestnuts in stir frys. They can also be used to produce alcohol.
Spigorello — Yukina Savoy isn’t the only green leafy underdog making a play for kale-level fame. The Southern Italian green spigorello’s wavy leaves taste like broccoli and cook like kale. A quick sauté with garlic and olive oil makes this gourmet green a simple and interesting addition to any plate.
Cheese Pumpkin — Sure, the words cheese and pumpkin next to each other look unappetizing, but this large, tan variety gets its name from the smooth texture of its cooked pulp. The bright orange flesh is far less stringy than more common varieties of pumpkin, making it great for pies and savory stews.