The city seems like an odd place to go for a farmers market, doesnt it? In the middle of the concrete jungle, surrounded by tall buildings and endless roads, you would never expect to find a bustling market full of the seasons best produce. When Shaun suggested that we make a visit to the Baltimore Farmers Market, I was a bit skeptical.
As we drove through the city (actually, we sat in traffic for an hour because of a race that morning), I wondered if we were wasting our time. How could the city offer anything more than my local farmers market? Though I was reluctant, I am always up for trying something new, so onward we went.
When we got within a few blocks of the market, I began seeing crowds of people on the sidewalks, all smiling and carrying over-stuffed bags of market treasures. My hopes began to rise. Once we arrived, I knew before I even stepped out of the car that this was going to be amazing! The air was filled with the aroma of homemade bread and freshly brewed coffee- a tempting duo so early in the morning.
We began walking around the market, taking in the sights and smells, immediately realizing just how massive this farmers market was. Ive been to markets in the past that offered everything imaginable, but nothing compared to the sheer size of what Baltimore had to offer. I was instantly drawn to the stand offering samples of fresh local goat cheese, while Shaun and the boys checked out a vendor offering fresh lamb and poultry.
Once I had my fill of goat cheese (which was amaaa-zing, by the way), Shaun and I met back up to check out the rest of the farmers market. There were farm fresh eggs, organic veggies, locally raised meats, varieties of mushrooms Ive never even heard of before, a dozen different flavors of pickles, and a local vineyard offering wine tastings- score!
Just when I thought the day couldnt get any better, Shaun turned to me and said do you want some lobster tails? Umm yes, please- this gal never turns down lobster! Although I was already impressed with the Baltimore Farmers Market, I was blown over when we discovered a seafood vendor offering the freshest fish, clams, oysters, and of course lobster! We quickly bought our fill and headed off in search of the next treasure-in-waiting.
In addition to the lobster tails, we also brought home some of the freshest, local, organic veggies Ive ever seen. The very best offerings of the season were available in abundance, which we took full advantage of. That night, we treated ourselves to the lobster tails and some of the produce we snagged at the market.
The end result was this amazing dish- Lobster Tails & Farmers Market Veggies with Lemon Cream Sauce. The light and delicate lobster nicely balanced out the earthiness of the veggies. We topped it all off with a rich, creamy, lemon butter sauce. The sauce was indulgent but the flavors were bright and springy, a perfect combination.
Now that spring is here, we plan to check out all of the farmers markets in the Chesapeake region. Next up is either Chestertown on the beautiful Eastern Shore, or DuPont Circle in the heart of Washington, DC. I cant wait to see what unusual treasures we find next time, although it will be tough to beat fresh lobster tails!
Lobster Tails & Farmers Market Veggies
with Lemon Cream Sauce
FOR THE LEMON CREAM SAUCE
3/4 cup heavy cream (organic)
1/4 white wine
1/2 stick butter (organic)
1/2 lemon, juiced
Pinch of Old Bay seasoning
Salt & Pepper, to taste
1. Combine all ingredients into a small sauce pan.
2. Simmer over medium heat until butter melts and all ingredients combine together. Sauce should be thick enough to stick to your spoon.
FOR THE LOBSTER
2 fresh lobster tails, 5-6 oz. each
2 Tbsp. butter (organic), cut into 8 small pieces
1/2 lemon, juiced
Pinch of Salt & Pepper
1. Set oven to High Broil.
2. Crack each lobster shell in half, and butterfly tail meat lengthwise.
3. Sprinkle lobster meat lightly with salt and pepper.
4. Place 1 Tbsp. of butter on each lobster tail (4 of the little cubes).
5. Drizzle lobster tails with lemon juice.
6. Broil in oven for 10-15 minutes, depending on your oven.
FOR THE VEGGIES
3 potatoes (organic), cut into long rectangular pieces
5-6 carrots (organic), cut into long rectangular pieces
1 sprig of fresh rosemary
1 sprig of fresh thyme
Pinch of Salt & Pepper
1. Fill a large saucepan halfway with water, add salt and pepper.
2. Tie the rosemary and thyme sprigs together with bakers twine.
3. Place herb bundle into water, bring to a boil.
4. Once the water comes to a boil, gently add carrots and potatoes, reduce heat to medium.
5. Cook until carrots and potatoes are fork tender, remove from water.**
**Note: If you choose to serve broccolini with this dish, like we did, add it to the boiling water once the carrots and potatoes are removed. Cook until slightly tender.
TO PLATE LOBSTER & VEGGIES WITH CREAM SAUCE
1. Layer carrots and potatoes onto the plate in a neat stack, in alternating layers. (Shaun describes this as building with Lincoln Logs
2. Place one lobster tail on each plate (and broccolini, if you choose).
3. Drizzle the carrots, potatoes, and lobster tail with the lemon cream sauce.