California Citrus
Winter is Citrus Time in California!

Midwinter is peak time for California citrus fruits and when they are at their juiciest and sweetest. You'll find a large selection of lemons, kumquats, grapefruit, clementines and several varieties of oranges at the farmers markets through spring. One of our favorites is the Meyer lemon with its distinctive floral, slightly sweet taste highly aromatic peel.

The Versatile Mushroom
Earthy Hidden Treasures

Raw, grilled, sautéed, stuffed, braised, stir-fried, breaded, or roasted — mushrooms are a surprisingly versatile ingredient! Fresh mushrooms add dimension, texture and flavor to dishes as well as provide important nutrients including selenium, potassium, riboflavin, niacin, and Vitamin D. The Monterey Bay is ideal for mushroom production and is the second largest producer of cultivated mushrooms in the US.

Healthy Kale
A Nutritional Powerhouse

Kale, the queen of the greens, is loaded with vitamins A, C, and K, along with vitamin E (antioxidant), calcium, phytonutrients, and helps lower cholesterol — not only is it one of the healthiest vegetables on the planet, it tastes great in salads, braises, soups and even smoothies. Here are some tips for selecting, storing and prepping winter greens from our market chef.

Local Raw Milk and Cream
Schoch Dairy’s motto —“Quality over quantity.”

Raw milk from from grass fed cows contains higher levels of CLA (conjugated linoleic acid), vitamins, and a wide range of minerals. Schoch's Family Farmstead raw milk is creamy, full flavored and delicious. Learn how to make homemade kefir, a cultured milk beverage full of healthy probiotics using raw milk.

Edible Paradise :: Seasonal Cooking

MBCFM Recipes

From Our Markets to Your Table

Edible Paradise celebrates the year-round abundance of the highest quality, freshest food grown on the Central Coast by our family farmers at the Monterey Bay Certified Farmers Markets. If you enjoy preparing and eating locally grown food, this blog is for you!

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Meyer Lemon — The Darling of Farmers Markets

California Meyer Lemons

California Meyer Lemons

The Meyer lemon and I have an odd history that began at a party in San Jose in the early 80s. I was offered a choice between lemon or lime with my sparkling water — and I chose lemon. However, one sip later, I was confused — that was not a lemon in my drink! I returned the drink to the bartender and asked for a lemon. The bartender explained to me that the yellow skinned citrus quarters sitting in the condiment bowl were MEYER lemons, like that would explain everything. I was expecting a real lemon, not some impostor posing as a lemon. I settled for a lime instead, hoping it would be a genuine lime with a flavor I would recognize. Continue Reading →

Delectable Edible Gifts From Your Kitchen



If you are pondering holiday gift ideas for friends or coworkers, you might not have to go any further than your own kitchen for inspiration.  Ingredients like dried fruit and nuts are plentiful at the farmers markets, just in time for making some delectable confections or savory snacks.

Late fall and winter fruits make excellent fruit butters and chutneys. When elegantly wrapped or bottled, homemade products from your kitchen make memorable gifts. Here are some of our favorite recipes and gift ideas — Continue Reading →

Pomegranate — The Original Forbidden Fruit


Pomegranate – The Original Forbidden Fruit

The name “pomegranate” derives from Latin pomum (‘apple’) and granatus (‘seeded’). Jewish scholars believe that the pomegranate was the original “forbidden fruit” of the Garden of Eden. The pomegranate has been a prominent symbol in many religions and cultures since Biblical times, when Moses promised his followers that they would find the fruit in the Promised Land, to the 18th century, when Spanish sailors introduced it to the southern United States. Cultivated since ancient times, the pomegranate is native to the region from Iran to northern India. The pomegranate is now cultivated widely in California and Arizona for juice production.

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Pears – Sweet Pleasures of Autumn


The Extraordinary Pear

Pears are one of the world’s most alluring fruits with its voluptuous contour and buttery textured flesh. A perfectly ripe, luscious pear is without peer as a sweet pleasure of autumn. This ancient fruit captured the praise of the well-known Greek poet, Homer (8th century B.C.), who referred to pears as a “gift of the gods.” The Romans developed over 50 varieties of pears and introduced the cultivated pear to Europe. The California Bartlett is an ancestor of a pear originating in Berkshire, England from the 17th century. California grown pears include Bartlett, Bosc, Sekel, Comice, Starkrimson (red pears), D’Anjou, Forelle, Packhams, Taylor’s Gold,  and Warrens.

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Mushrooms — Earthy Hidden Treasures


Monterey Mushrooms

Did you know the Monterey Bay area is the second largest producer of mushrooms in the US and third in the world? Pennsylvania, where mushroom farming was pioneered, ranks first in the US for mushroom production. The Chinese learned mushroom farming in Pennsylvania for shiitake production and are the number one producer in the world.

What were once exotic are now commonplace — shiitakes, oysters, cremini, and Portobellos. And they can all be found at the Aptos Farmer’s Market. New Natives offers shiitake and oyster mushrooms, and Blanca at Global Mushroom carries Portobello, cremini and white button mushrooms. Continue Reading →