Farmer’s Market season may begin in spring but some of the most anticipated Colorado crops are not in season until summer. Cooler nights and sunnier days are driving forces to making Colorado crops full of so much flavor (such as melons, peaches, corn, grapes, berries and squash). We are so excited to incorporate all our favorite summer flavors into the Serendipity Catering 2018 Summer Menu! The majority of Colorado’s popular crops are harvested in summer, get the lowdown on which ones to look out for at your local Farmer’s Market:
Palisade Peaches | Available Late June thru Mid-September
One of Colorado’s most sought after crop is the Palisade Peach. Because let’s face it… there is nothing sweeter than biting into a juicy summer harvested Palisade Peach! Luckily you do not have to travel to Palisade to enjoy the naturally sweet treat (unless you want to attend the Palisade Peach Festival for endless palisade peaches). August may be the height of peach season, but you can start finding them at farmer’s market at the end of June! Mix things up with all your farmer’s market finds this summer with this Peach and Basil Flatbread:
2 large naan breads
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon crushed garlic
1/2 peach (thinly sliced)
4 oz fresh mozzarella (sliced)
15 basil leaves (chopped)
Optional: balsamic vinegar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix oil and garlic in a small bowl.Brush the oil mixture over the naan bread. Place the bread on a sprayed cookie sheet. First add your slices of mozzarella. Then place your sliced peaches on top. Sprinkle salt and pepper on both naan breads. Bake for 25 minutes or until the cheese is brown and bubbly. Sprinkle basil leaves on top. While the flat breads are cooking, add the vinegar to a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil and then lower to simmer. Cook until the vinegar reduces and becomes a bit thicker. Drizzle the vinegar over the cooked flatbreads, cut and serve.
Bookmark these delicious recipes for yummy summer peach dishes, here.
Rocky Ford Melons | Available Mid-July thru Late September
The Rocky Ford Melon season typically is only for about 7 weeks through the summer! Because of it’s short availability/harvest during the summer it is a high demand Colorado crop. About 4 million cantaloupes will be produced and sold by the end of the harvest period in September. The perfect combination of temperature, weather and elevation makes the Rocky Ford area perfect growing for melons. Don’t let the Rocky Ford Melon Season Pass by without trying Cantaloupe Gazpacho with Crispy Prosciutto:
1 medium cantaloupe (peeled, seeded, chopped)
1 medium cucumber (peeled, seeded, chopped)
2 tablespoons shallots (minced)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2/3 cup plain nonfat yogurt
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
4-6 slices prosciutto
Optional: extra diced cucumber, cantaloupe, chopped fresh herbs, and olive oil, for garnish
To make the gazpacho, in a blender, combine the cantaloupe, cucumber, shallots, salt, and 1/3 cup of water. Puree until smooth. Transfer half of cantaloupe mixture to a large bowl. Add the yogurt and sherry vinegar to the remaining cantaloupe mixture in the blender and puree until smooth. With the motor running, slowing pour in the olive oil and blend until creamy and very smooth. Pour into the bowl with the rest of the cantaloupe mixture and stir to combine. Chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Place a wire rack on a large baking sheet. Arrange the prosciutto slices in a single layer on the rack and roast until crisp, 6 to 8 minutes.
Make all the melon recipes your heart desires before the season comes and goes with these recipes, here.
Olathe Sweet Corn | Available Mid-July thru Mid-September
Corn is one of the biggest cash crops in Colorado…it is no wonder why the tender and sweet Olathe Sweet Corn is celebrated across the country! You can even attend a whole festival in August (Olathe Sweet Corn Festival) dedicated to this highly desired crop. Olathe Sweet Corn is so tender that some farmers opt to hand pick every ear of corn by hand, because the corn is too delicate for a machine. Get a mouthful of this Sweet Corn Crab Salad:
2 ears worth of corn kernels
1/2 red bell pepper (seeded and finely diced)
3 scallions (thinly sliced on a diagonal)
1/2 – 1 whole jalapeño (seeded for spice and minced)
1 pound crab meat
2 cloves garlic (minced)
1 tablespoon coarse grain dijon mustard
zest and juice of one lemon
1 teaspoon white wine or rice wine vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon cracked pepper
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon fresh basil (chopped)
1 tablespoon fresh tarragon (chopped)
1 tablespoon fresh mint (chopped)
Add kernels from both ears of corn into a large bowl. Add the bell pepper, scallions and jalapeño. Toss to combine. Add the crab and toss to combine. In a small bowl add the garlic, mustard, lemon zest and juice, vinegar, olive oil, pepper, salt and fresh herbs. Whisk until combined. Pour dressing over the crab mixture and toss until salad is well dressed.
Once you bite into the tender sweet corn, there’s no looking back. Get the best sweet corn recipes, here.