This weekend’s German Coast Farmer’s Market was downright bleak: just three vendors, and only one with fresh produce. After nearly a week of sub-freezing temperatures, local farmers didn’t have much left to harvest. I bought an armload of turnips and broccoli, plants cold-hardy enough to survive our recent bout of Arctic air, as well as sweet potatoes harvested earlier in the season and a dozen yard eggs. I commiserated with the lone farmer, Mr. Schexnaydre, about the damage to local citrus trees. He advised me to wait until I saw new growth (usually in late February) to determine which parts of my backyard orchard need to be pruned of their frost damage.
Heavy, persistent fog and cold rain derailed my grilling plans for the Saints’ playoff game. Instead, I put the sweet potatoes and turnips to use in a hearty, warming vegetable beef soup, along with carrots, peppers, spinach, celery, and potatoes. Somehow, vegetable soup doesn’t seem like football food, but the dish was a perfect antidote to the dreary weather.