Last week I attended the LA Times Festival of Books at UCLA. This is my third year and it is always a good day though last year they didn't have any decent authors on the Food Stage. I was very lucky to be there and see a good demo from two authors. Amelia Saltsman author of the Santa Monica Farmer's Market Cookbook was half of one of the cooking demos on Saturday. The other was, Jo Ann Cianciulli , and her book is LA's Original Farmer's Market Cookbook .
Amelia was focused on all farmer's markets and the wonderful fresh local food to by and Jo Ann was more about one the 3rd and Fairfax Original Farmer's Market. I bought her book and even stood in line to have her sign it for me. Something I usually don't bother with but she was so charming I had to ask a few questions.
What I found at the demo was Green Garlic. I know, I'm always a bit late to the party and lil bird had mentioned buy some at her FM a few years ago but I was so intrigued with a very simple vegetarian soup Amelia made I had to find some. Quite surprisingly I found some at Jon's our local ethnic market. It looks very much like Mexican Onions but not. It's actually garlic not formed into a head of cloves with the green tops. Everything is eatable and has a mild garlic flavor. I made the soup and as vegetarian recipes go it wasn't bad and it's very quick to make. Next time I'll saute the leeks and green garlic with bacon to give it a little more flavor; maybe a little cream, too.
Vegan Potato Leek and Green Garlic Soup
- about two cups of leeks, white and just a bit of the green part
- three bulbs of green garlic, remove the roots and chop
- about two cups of cubed red potatoes, don't peel
Now she suggested to puree some of the soup to give it a different texture which I did. I just did a quick few whirs with my stick blender. The flavors are very subtle and I'm sure that's why there is no chicken broth and it's quick, less than 30 minutes and with no milk or meat you could serve this to you Vegan friends. My meat-eating husband ate it for lunch and enjoyed it quite a bit.
The book I bought, LA's Original Farmer's Market Cookbook is great and brought back some fond memories. Little vignettes about the origins of the Farmer's Market and great recipes from some of the food vendors. If you've never been or a regular patron this book is great.