By 6:00am last Saturday we were en route to the Edwards’ Farmers Market, where we sell our freshly ground organic spices from a booth. I much prefer driving in Saturday’s spectacular morning light to fighting the Friday evening traffic. As we left the foothills, a thunderstorm loomed to the north. The sky above Boulder was black, as if the day had not yet begun there. To the south, the sun was brilliant, casting a golden glow on the rock peaks as we ascended into the Rockies.
We have had more rain this year than any other year I’ve lived in Colorado. The traditional grays and browns of the mountains have been replaced with lush green mosses and purple and yellow wildflowers. The wide open Colorado blue sky is now blanketed in clouds. The morning sun highlights the moisture in the air, and creates colors and shadows that amaze and astound me. Last week, we saw a sunrise rainbow, … a first for me, no rain present, just big fat moist clouds.
The road to Edwards crosses the continental divide at Loveland Pass and then continues on over Vail Pass. Sunlight dances upon the water spilling from the rocks high above the road. We stopped in Georgetown for coffee. The air was crisp, a hint of fall, with the feeling that winter is not too far away. I pulled my heavy fleece from the trunk, excited by this omen of seasonal change. As we cross Vail Pass, the temperature dropped to 38°.
When we arrived in Edwards, the mayhem was underway. As usual, Clarks Orchards was already set up. “Fresh corn, picked yesterday.” “Peaches, $8 for a large bag.” He is an early bird, and always gets his worm. It was 8:30. The market doesn’t open till 9:30. Still, a line had formed at his trailer. The rest of the vendors were setting up; popping tents and hauling their produce and fresh baked goods across the parking lot. They come from all over Colorado, some from the Western slope, others, like us, from Denver.
On Saturday, my tent was between a new honey vendor, and a chef demonstration tent. The Chef (Kelly) and owner of my favorite restaurant in Vail, Kelly Liken’s, prepared the following tantalizing salad. I had a taste of it at mid day, and craved more for the rest of the market. It was so good, I marched right down to the Morales Farms booth and bought snap peas so that I could make the salad when I got home.
I tried to julienne the peas in the food processor with a julienne blade. All it did was create a mess. Do it the old fashioned way, with a sharp knife. Though it seams like a daunting task, it only took a few minutes. (It took me longer to clean the food processor). The sweetness of the peas, the saltiness of the parmesan, and the earthiness of the truffle oil join together to create a symphony of flavors in your mouth. The julienne cut highlights the crisp texture of the peas almost creating the sensation of eating an apple. I wish snow peas were is season all year round because I just love this salad.
- 1 lb snow peas, julienned (sliced lengthwise)
- 1 shallot, minced
- ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
- ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 2 Tablespoons Champagne vinegar
- 7 Tablespoons extra virgen 0live 0il
- 1 teaspoon truffle oil (or substitute 1 teaspoon black truffle sea salt)
- Combine mustard, shallots and vinegar in a mixing bowl with a whisk
- Drizzle in olive and truffle oils while whisking
- In a second bowl, combine cheese, parsley and peas.
- Toss the peas lightly with the dressing and season with salt and pepper.