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Photos by Jane Pellicciotto

The Globe artichoke (cynara scolymus), according to one myth, gets its Latin name from a story involving a young nymph, Cynara, who had a tryst with Zeus. After a disagreement, Zeus turned Cynara into an artichoke—and we all benefit from her ill-fated romance. Ancient Greeks and Romans considered the artichoke an aphrodisiac and some believed it secured the birth of boys. Catherine de’Medici developed a near obsession with the wonderful thistle and indulged in vast quantities of them.

But despite the long history of the artichoke, its daunting exterior can turn away the less intrepid eaters among us. Once you dive in, however, there is almost no turning back. The grassy, nutty, metallic flavor and the smooth, slippery texture of the leaves are indeed intoxicating. This prickly, grenade-like vegetable is a perennial thistle in the sunflower family. The artichoke itself is the bud of the flower. If allowed to grow, a glorious, purple, spiky flower emerges from the top. There are some 140 known varieties of artichokes.

Artichokes have a number of nutritional benefits. They’re high in fiber and also contain a lot of iron, which produces the curious metallic taste. They’re also believed to stimulate the liver, purify the blood and help to dissolve kidney and gall stones. Artichokes are believed to be a calmative; some make a stress-reducing tea from the leaves, or bracts.

But alas, life throws us culinary curveballs. For all the artichoke’s delightful qualities, there is one unfortunate drawback. They ruin the flavor of wine due to their metallic taste. One source offers this advice: Where artichokes are fried or part of a frittata or pasta, try a rosé or soft structured white wine. But when more simply prepared, artichokes are best paired with water. If you must drink wine, don’t drink your best bottle!

Look for artichokes that are firm, with tightly packed leaves unmarred by brown spots. Artichokes can stay in the refrigerator for a week or longer, but don’t wash them untll they’re ready for use. As you prepare artichokes for any dish, keep them in a bowl of acidulated water—a medium-sized bowl of water with juice of a lemon. This prevents discoloration.

Artichokes can be steamed, fried, grilled, braised, roasted and stuffed. They’ll pair beautifully with almost any Spring vegetable: leeks, fava beans, peas, spinach, chard, spring onions, asparagus. They are delightful raw if sliced thinly and dressed with lemon, olive oil and shaved parmesan. Baby artichokes are particularly versatile and entirely edible because they lack the prickly choke.

To prepare any size artichoke, snap off a row or two of the outermost tough leaves. You can eliminate any sharp leaf points with scissors. Then lay the artichoke on its side and cut off the top. For larger artichokes that you plan to add to a dish or stuff, you’ll need to dig out the choke—the fuzzy interior—with a spoon. Unless the stem is very long and tough, leave it. It tastes just as good as the heart. Steam a whole artichoke for 30 to 40 minutes (depending on size) testing tenderness by inserting a knife tip into the heart, close to the stem. These can be enjoyed with a sauce of butter, lemon, garlic and a little parsley or mint. Tug the leaves one by one and remove the tender pulp with your teeth till you reach the center. Cut out the fuzzy choke and enjoy your reward—the heart—and your effort.

Try the recipe below, which is a little work, but you will celebrate the short-lived Spring concurrence of favas and artichokes…otherwise you must wait another year.

                      --Jane Pellicciotto


Kids Cook at the Market

Saturdays in June, July & August
8:30 - 10am
Register Now!

June Schedule
June 20 (ages 7-11)
June 27 (ages 12-15)
Veritable Vegetables!

Preserving the Market

Thursday, June 25
5 - 8pm at the Eastbank Market
Preserving Luscious Oregon
Berries & Fruit

Powell's at the Market

Saturday, June 27
Birds & Bugs (Chickens & Bees)
Browse and buy books on the care
and feeding of chickens and bees



Greg Perrault, the chef of DOC restaurant, is a regular customer at Portland Farmers Market.  We often see him perusing the aisles and purchasing local delights such as buttermilk from Jacob's Creamery and farm fresh produce from Groundwork Organics and Gathering Together Farm.

Visit DOC to sample Chef Greg's daily menu featuring local, seasonal ingredients fresh from the farmers market.  If you are lucky enough to snag one of the dining room's 24 seats, you can watch Chef Greg prepare your meal right in the restaurant's open kitchen. 

Hood Strawberries
Green Garlic
Fresh Lavender
Floral Bouquets
Wild and Cultivated Mushrooms
Farm Fresh Eggs and Milk
Fresh and Cured Pork






Oregon Trail EBT Shoppers
Double at PFM Markets

Making healthy, local and sustainable foods available to all of the area’s citizens is a cornerstone tenet of Portland Farmers Market (PFM). One of the ways PFM helps realize this goal is through its participation in the state’s Oregon Trail EBT program. Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT for short) is commonly referred to as food stamps—except the program no longer uses stamps. Transactions are now handled electronically through recipients’ Oregon Trail benefit debit cards.

Instead of having each market vendor decide individually whether to participate in the EBT program and complete the subsequent paperwork, PFM processes all EBT transactions at the Info Booth of each of its five markets, debiting the Oregon Trail card in exchange for $1 tokens that shoppers can use at PFM vendor stalls.

Either due to greater awareness of PFM’s participation in the EBT program, concerns about food safety, or the double whammy of double-digit unemployment and increased food inflation—possibly a little of each—the EBT token program at PFM has experienced a 100% increase thus far during the 2009 season.

For many people, PFM’s EBT/token program offers the opportunity to bring healthy, affordable foods to their table. According to government statistics, over 90% of benefits go to households with either a child, senior, or disabled individual. PFM spoke to market shopper, ‘Ken’ (not his real name) who represented another type of food aid recipient: single and childless; a full-time student who became eligible for his Oregon Trail card when his work hours were cut to under 20 hours a week earlier this year.

‘Ken’ believes the PSU Market is the "cheapest place to get fresh produce downtown." This is not just the way he feels; for the third year in a row, Seattle University students and researchers found that prices at farmers markets were less expensive than comparable items at grocery stores. For ‘Ken’, the market offering an EBT option to shoppers means he is able to add fresh vegetables to his self-described diet of “rice, beans and ramen”.

60% of people who receive Food Stamp/Oregon Trail benefits will voluntarily leave the program within a year as their household conditions improve. During this time of need when the desire to be self-sufficient and provide for your family is not always matched by opportunities to do so, having access to nutritious foods can alleviate at least one worry. 

The majority of farmers markets in the Portland area accept EBT cards, so please help spread the word!  PFM would like to thank Oregon Trail benefit recipients for shopping at all area farmers markets, supporting local farmers and investing their dollars back into the local economy.

--Dave Adamshick

Kids Cook at the Market

On Saturdays in June, July and August, junior chefs age seven to fifteen can cultivate their culinary skills, meet local farmers and enjoy seasonal, farm-fresh foods by enrolling in kids' cooking classes held at our Saturday market. These fun and informative weekly classes are taught by professional chef and nutrition instructor, Vanessa Rubin.

For more information about classes, the instructor, and registration, please download the Registration Form. Advance registration is required, so hurry while there is still space left!

Preserving the Market

Thank you to all the would-be preservers out there for nearly selling out our Preserving Series this year!  Instructor Cara Haskey will teach the basics of successful home canning during this 3 part series. Each class will include an overview of food preservation, food safety and selection, canning basics, and helpful resources for trusted recipes, canning supplies, and creative ideas for labeling and gift-giving.  View the Registration Form for more information.


Pietopia is back! If your life was a pie, what would it be? To participate in this wonderful community event, please submit your 300 word blurb and recipe by July 15th to, including why you chose the recipe and how the taste of it relates to the current state of your life.  Sample the winning pies and meet the bakers at the victory celebration to be held on August 20th at Eastbank Market.

Market Tours

Summer is a perfect time to see farmer’s markets in bloom. Portland Farmers Market welcomes tour groups of almost any size interested in learning more on the topics of regional food systems, farmer’s market operations, sustainable cities, agro-tourism, and food education.

In addition to a guided walk around the market, tours may also include product sampling, presentations by Market vendors, a question and answer period with vendors and staff, seated dining and beverage options, and an overview of the organization’s history, community relationships, and vendor selection criteria. Tours take approximately one hour and each is customized based on the specific interests of the tour group.

We welcome input from tour participants in order to develop the most meaningful experience for individual groups. The goal of our tour program is to help the greater public understand the critical role that shopping at the farmer’s market plays in keeping our local family farmers farming, strengthening the local economy, and adding to the health and vibrancy of our community.

For more information about market tours and rates or to arrange a visit, please contact Anna Curtin at 503.241.0032 or We look forward to seeing soon!


Oregon Berry Farmers

It's Berry Time!

June marks the start of Oregon’s berry season.

Juicy, bright red Hood Strawberries are among the first berries to appear at the market. Raspberries, blackberries, huckleberries, marionberries, loganberries, boysenberries and blueberries will soon follow.

A variety of market vendors offer berries throughout the summer. Vendors who specialize in growing berries include Chernishoff Farm, Krivoshein Farms, The Berry Patch, Valley Berry and Unger Farms. Some vendors, such as Winters Farms, also make jams and syrups from their berries.

Although many shoppers can’t resist snacking on their berries before leaving the market, there are as many ways to cook with berries as there are days in the summer. Market-fresh berries usually take center stage in pies, cobblers and crisps, but they're also great in savory dishes. A Pinot Noir-berry sauce or gastrique (a sweet-sour reduction using vinegar or wine) made with huckleberries, blueberries or blackberries would be a delicious accent to pork, lamb, duck or game.

If a simpler recipe is more your style, a strawberry and blueberry shortcake is a fast and easy crowd-pleaser. Or, top perfectly ripe berries with rich and tangy crème fraiche or chocolate mascarpone from Jacob’s Creamery and watch smiles appear on your guests' faces!

Interested in enjoying the taste of berries throughout the year? Consider preserving them. To freeze whole berries, rinse and air-dry them, place them on a cookie sheet in the freezer until firm and easy to handle, then seal them in a plastic bag or freezer-safe container. If you can dedicate more time to cooking, consider canning. Jam and jelly recipes are easy, and make fun holiday gifts.

Inspiration and recipes are available online, as well as the Taste the Place recipe station at PFM’s Saturday PSU Market. If you’re interested in making jams and jellies, be sure to check out the upcoming Preserving Series at the Eastbank Market, where Instructor Cara Haskey will show lucky home cooks how to turn abundant summer fruit into tasty treats that can be enjoyed year-round. 

For more information on which months berries are in season, check out the seasonality calendar on our website. To find out which berry vendors are at your local PFM market, see the list below and visit the interactive market maps on our website.

Deep Roots Farm
Early Mom
Gathering Together Farm
Janna's Flowers
Krivoshein Farms
Kruger's Farm Market Inc.
Liepold Farms
Lucky Farms
Market Fruit/Packer Orchards
Outback Farms
Persephone Farm
Rainyway Farm
Raynblest Farm
Rick Steffen Farm
Stephens Farm
The Berry Patch
Thompson Farms
Unger Farms Inc.
Vicki's @ Sun Gold Farm, LLC
Viridian Farms
Winter Green Farm
Winters Farms

Bella Organic
Liepold Farms
Lucky Farms
Natures Fountain Farm, llc
Winter Green Farm

Early Mom
Gathering Together Farm
Krivoshein Farms
Kruger's Farm Market Inc.
Liepold Farms
Lucky Farms
Market Fruit/Packer Orchards
Rick Steffen Farm
Stephens Farm
The Berry Patch
Thompson Farms
Unger Farms Inc.
Vicki's @ Sun Gold Farm, LLC
Viridian Farms
West Union Gardens

Denison Farms, LLC
Gathering Together Farm
Heavenly Harvest Farm
Liepold Farms
Market Fruit/Packer Orchards
Unger Farms Inc.
Valley Berry Farm
Winter Green Farm

Bella Organic
Chernishoff Farm
Krivoshein Farms
Liepold Farms
Lucky Farms
Pasture Radicals

--Pamela Brehm

America's Favorite Farmers Market

Do you love shopping at your five local PFM markets? Then here is your chance to show your support and VOTE PFM the best farmers market in the country!

This summer, American Farmland Trust is supporting farmers markets across the nation with this nationwide contest to promote farmers markets and sustainable local farms and food across the country. Cast your VOTE for PFM by August 31st!

INGREDIENTS, a documentary

Solutions to our anonymous and industrialized food system are featured in the new film INGREDIENTS, narrated by Bebe Neuwirth and featuring Greg Higgins, Alice Waters, Gary Paul Nabhan and Joan Dye Gussow. INGREDIENTS also prominently features Portland's farmers markets, and the many talented and passionate chefs, growers and consumers who have placed Portland Oregon at the forefront of America's local food movement.

In August INGREDIENTS will make its world premiere at the Globians documentary festival in Berlin, and in September the U.S. premiere in Portland, Oregon. Working with Edible Communities, Slow Food and other national food advocacy groups, INGREDIENTS will help to build local food communities through public screenings that can also raise money for these vital organizations.

The makers of INGREDIENTS - James Beard Award winning team of Robert Bates and Brian Kimmel - are asking for small contributions to help finish and promote this groundbreaking look at local food efforts in America. Go to to learn more, contribute and help share this important story about the next step in the local food movement.

The Plastic Quilt Project

In order to raise awareness about the importance of decreasing our dependence on plastic, Leave No Plastic Behind ("LNPB") created The Plastic Quilt Project. From March through May 2009, LNPB invited artist/participants to live plastic-free, then use any plastic collected during these three months as inspiration for creating a 12' x 12" square art piece to be added as part of a large quilt that will travel around the city, country and possibly the world!

To view the artists' creations, visit the RE:Vision Gallery at SCRAP, 2915 NE MLK Jr. Blvd., Portland, OR, 97212, through the month of June.  Gallery hours: 11-7pm Wed, 11-6pm Thur-Sat, and 11-5pm Sun; closed Mon and Tues.

Intro to Organic Gardening and Farming

Zenger Farm is offering a workshop series which introduces practical organic agriculture skills through hands-on learning and small group instruction. Topics will include vegetable cultivation, irrigation and pest management.

Zenger Farm is a non-profit farm and wetland in outer southeast Portland dedicated to promoting sustainable food systems, environmental stewardship and local economic development through a working urban farm.

Food Front Cooperative Grocery

How can a business thrive with 5,500 owners?

Ask Food Front Cooperative Grocery. For over 35 years, they have been successfully running a member-owned grocery store in NW Portland and recently opened a second location in Hillsdale. Together, 5,500 owner/members provide the capital—and common ideals—to allow a business like this not only to exist, but to flourish.

Historically, co-ops have allowed individuals to band together in order to source food products otherwise unavailable in mainstream grocery stores. Activist principles like buying products with less packaging, sourcing locally made products and choosing producers with shared values spurred the popularity and success of co-ops early on, and still do to this day. In fact, many of the mainstream stores that have adopted this natural/local/organic purchasing model might very well owe their success to co-ops.

Founded in 1972 by a group of neighbors in NW Portland, Food Front has long been committed to the community which it serves. In order to provide its customers with the freshest, highest quality items, Food Front has forged relationships with an impressive list of local farmers and food producers.

Food Front works with 40 to 50 local farmers. Signs in the store identify not only whether produce is local and/or organic, but also the name of the farm on which it was grown. This fosters education—one of Food Front’s missions—by encouraging people to learn and care about where their food comes from. Throughout the store, signs identify locally produced items, making it the ideal place for locavores to shop.

Tom Mattox, Marketing and Outreach Coordinator at Food Front, believes the co-op’s commitment to local producers helps incubate small businesses. He says, “Food Front is often the first store where local producers get their start. Food Front seeks out these products, and these food entrepreneurs know that there’s no barrier to entry here.”

Each semester, Grocery Manager Gary Koppen visits OSU’s Food Innovation Center to help program participants learn how to get their products to the retail marketplace. “If there’s a new barbeque sauce being made by someone local,” Tom said, “it’s usually carried here first. Many successful products, now sold nationally, got their start at Food Front.”

Many shoppers come to the co-op for that very reason. And despite the store’s modest size, Food Front carries a surprising variety of items. Food Front can buy in smaller quantities, which enables them to carry an interesting and diverse selection, possibly even special ordering an item for a customer. People who shop at the co-op care about what they buy. As Tom put it, “There’s a higher consciousness [in Portland] about food than anywhere else I’ve been.”

For a $150 fee per year, anyone can join and own a share in the market. Although you need not be a member to shop at Food Front, there are tangible benefits to owning a share. For many, a powerful, if subtle, benefit is knowing that they are helping to create and sustain a business that aligns with their values. As an owner/member you also have access to dozens of regularly discounted items, special ‘discounts days’ four times a year, dividends from profits, and the ability to vote for the board members who set goals and make strategic decisions for the store.

When asked about why Food Front sponsors Portland Farmers Market’s Ecotrust Market on Thursdays in the Pearl, he explained, “The values around farmers markets work their way into people’s consciousness. It was a no brainer to be part of it. I always work from my intentions and values.” Food Front values being part of an education process that connects farmers to consumers, spreads good will around and helps create relationships and community.

--Jane Pellicciotto

Market Dates + Locations

8:30AM – 2PM   Fall Hours: Nov – Dec   9AM – 2PM
in downtown’s South Park Blocks
between SW Harrison & Montgomery

APRIL 29 – OCTOBER 28   10AM – 2PM
in South Park Blocks
between SW Salmon & Main

JUNE 4 – SEPTEMBER 24   3:30 – 7:30PM
NW 10th Street between NW Irving & Johnson

MAY 7 – SEPTEMBER 24    3:30 – 7:30PM
SE Salmon at 20th
between SE Hawthorne & Belmont

MAY 3 – SEPTEMBER 27    10AM – 2PM
NE 7th at Wygant between NE Alberta & Prescott

All markets accept Oregon Trail EBT, debit and credit cards.
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