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Jewels at the Santa Monica Farmers Market

Gorgeous fresh picked carrots in a rainbow of colors.

This week at the Santa Monica Farmers' Market the jewels of the season glow. Among my favorites? The rainbow carrots in orange, ruby, purple and gold. Some roots were so young they were the tiniest of crooked fingers, delicate and naturally sweet. These carrots make wonderful crudities for hummus.

I love these beautiful purple and yellow carrots.

Rainbow carrot bounty.


Persimmons. Just the word make my lips pucker. I can almost taste the astringency just by saying it. I suppose I ought to confess I've never eaten a persimmon in my life. I am a persimmon virgin. But my pal Kalyn over at Kalyn's Kitchen has persimmon experience (she advises, "Regarding the persimmons, you must remember to get FUYU PERSIMMONS. Repeat it like a mantra, Fuyu, Fuyu. The Hachiya persimmons are astringent and taste terrible until they are ripened to the point of being soft and almost liquid, but Fuyus can be eaten like an apple at almost any stage of ripeness.").

This Winter Fruit Salad Recipe with Persimmons, Pears, Grapes, and Agave-Pomegranate Vinaigrette from Kalyn sounds fresh and fabulous for the holidays. Maybe I'll be tempted to finally take a bite?

Radish beauty.

The Brassicaceae family and I do not get along. So I cannot indulge in these Easter colored egg-evocative root vegetables. Radishes do not a happy tummy make, in this kitchen. But I can admire their globular loveliness just the same. Aren't they beautiful?



Rach said…
That must be awesome to have a farmers market in DECEMBER :)
Beautiful photographs. I've never had a persimmon either - let me know what it's like if you try one.
They are SO beautiful! I have market envy. ;-)
Lauren said…
I've never had a persimmon either, but they look fantastic =D.
Annie Pazoo said…
Sigh. I'm so jealous; the S.M.F.M. is my favorite!. We only get there (to California) once a year.
trishtator said…
These are beautiful - and in December! I bet living in California is great!
Laura said…
I used to live in Santa Monica and I loved the market. I remember the mushroom guy and the beautiful family that had amazing produce. Last time I was visiting there I bought 5 pounds of the most amazing pistachios I ever tasted, I still have few ounces in the freezer. Time for another trip! Thanks for the pictures, they are beautiful.
tastyeatsathome said…
I am in love with those carrots. And you really should try persimmons! The fuyu ones are not astringent - they're mildly sweet and so tasty eaten right out of hand. Which reminds me, I need to find some...maybe a persimmon salad is what I need on my Christmas dinner table!
Nicole said…
Natures Rainbow! <3
you are such a fabulous writer&photographer!
Kalyn said…
Gorgeous photos! I am seriously jealous because our market closes in October! Regarding the persimmons, you must remember to get FUYU PERSIMMONS. Repeat it like a mantra, Fuyu, Fuyu. The Hachiya persimmons are astringent and taste terrible until they are ripened to the point of being soft and almost liquid, but Fuyus can be eaten like an apple at almost any stage of ripeness. I never thought much about them until I had this big box of persimmons to experiment with, but now I love persimmons.
jessy said…
Karina, I love persimmons and I can't wait to see any persimmon recipes you come up with, especially cakes and breads and pancakes! Here in Northern California the persimmon season is just ending and I have a huge bag of mushy persimmons to work with ... YUM. I might try adjusting your apple cake recipe ... we'll see.
Karyn said…
My Mom has Alzheimer's and sometimes its hard to get her to eat enough at meals. I always look forward to finding the Rainbow Carrots at the market because she loves them so much. She marvels at the fact that they all taste like carrots and don't taste like the different colors. :)
Anne Marie said…
What beautiful "eye candy" for a foggy-cold wintery day! Brightened my day. Aside from all that I appreciate your comments on your different food sensitivites. I share all your intolerances and hearing someone else talk about them in such a light-hearted way helps me not feel like I'm the only one dealing with so many food issues. But at the end of the day it's so wonderful to eat healthy, delicious foods and stay healthy and well! I make all of your recipes. Thanks Karina and Merry Christmas!
Anonymous said…
Suddenly I miss being in the SF Bay Area where I would peruse the market at Jack London Square (Oakland) on Sunday and the one in San Francisco throughout the week. All the beautiful peppers in every shade and the honey and the fruit...and the Lilies... I guess I need to go downtown to the Big D farmer's market and buy some of my own. Grapefruits are in season here. Thanks for sharing these beautiful jewels with us. :)
I'm green -- and orange and red and pink -- with envy. Not just at the gorgeous carrots, but at the fact that you have a farmers' market at this time of year. We have a Wintertime farmers' market in Providence, but there is very little fresh produce there.
We're actually moving to Santa Monica tomorrow. I can't wait to start hitting the farmer's markets!
Karina - you are one lucky gluten free goddess! A farmer's market in the winter! And persimmons - I had my first one when I traveled to Israel - right after I was diagnosed with Celiac - I bet you'll be able to find some good Middle Eastern recipes that use persimmon. Can't wait to see what you come up with!
Juanita said…
I have never seen carrots in any other colour than orange. How lovely! :-)
I grew those carrots and radishes this year. Had great success with the radishes. The carrots? Not so much. Beautiful photos.~~Dee
It's hard to imagine a farmer's market with those beautiful fresh veggies while we have a foot and a half of snow here (and it's still snowing!), but I love seeing them. So glad you are back in CA and happy once again. It shows in your new photo!

I am so envious! We will not have farmers' markets again until May or June. (sigh) That's the great thing about the internet - I get to live vicariously through my favorite bloggers. Thanks for posting the pics. Loved 'em.
Nicole said…
Beautiful produce, I'm jealous!
~M said…
Beautiful food - and photos! Those carrots are fabulous when scrubbed (I don't bother peeling the organic ones), halved or quartered, and roasted at a super high temp...and made into carrot fries.

By the way, the new header is gorgeous! The sliced strawberries make me itch for spring. At least the days are finally getting longer! :)
I really want to use carrots as a centerpiece instead of flowers after seeing that incredible photo... brilliant colors!
Carolyn Jung said…
I love the white carrots, especially. Those are so sugary sweet, it's unbelievable. Mother Nature's candy. ;)
rose said…
so healthy food.
Janet said…
Sorry Goddess, but I must respectfully disagree with your friend's advice regarding the Persimmon. Yes, the Fuyu is great because it can be eaten when still firm and can be used to cook with as well, but the Hachiya is an old variety used for making holiday goodies. Each year I make my grandmother's Persimmon Bars (which I would love for you to adapt hint, hint)which can only be made with the Hachiya. When they get super ripe and squishy you don't just have to scoop out the pulp and bake with it, cut off the top with a sharp knife and use a spoon to eat the gooey goodness inside. Might be an acquired taste, but to me, the Hachiya says: HOLIDAY TIME IS HERE!!!
Anonymous said…
I agree with Janet! I live in the central valley and this is the season for persimmon cookies, muffins, and breads! We are more accustomed to baking with the Hachiya persimmons(once they are pulpy, add a tsp of baking soda to weaken the astrigentness before baking). I would love to see a gluten free, dairy free, and egg free recipe. Do you think I could sub the pumpkin puree for persimmon on your pumpkin muffin recipe? We loved the pumpkin muffins by the way!!! Erika