Coastal Alabama Farmers & Fishermens Market


Located in Foley, Alabama

Slow Money - Recipe of the Week: Sweet Potato, Corn, Black beans, Tomato

Slow Money


Are you familiar with the Slow Money movement?  The movement focuses mainly on the benefits to our economy based on farmers’ markets and similar venues.  Quoting from their website: “Today, people are hungry for real alternatives to faster and faster, bigger and bigger, more and more global. Investing in local food systems is a way to begin fixing our economy and our culture from the ground up.”  “We are building a movement of individuals who … are choosing a constructive, hopeful course of action. Slow Money … is built on the premise that … we need not only new technologies and new policies, but also new sensibilities and new behavior, without which the words sustainable and transparent and accountable and socially responsible and metrics and impact will mean little in the end.”


Principles of Slow Money

  1. We must bring money back down to earth.
  2. There is such a thing as money that is too fast, companies that are too big, finance that is too complex. Therefore, we must slow our money down — not all of it, of course, but enough to matter.
  3. The 20th Century was the era of Buy Low/Sell High and Wealth Now/Philanthropy Later—what one venture capitalist called “the largest legal accumulation of wealth in history.” The 21st Century will be the era of nurture capital, built around principles of carrying capacity, care of the commons, sense of place, diversity and nonviolence.
  4. We must learn to invest as if food, farms and fertility mattered. We must connect investors to the places where they live, creating healthy relationships and new sources of capital for small food enterprises.
  5. Let us celebrate the new generation of entrepreneurs, consumers and investors who are showing the way from Making a Killing to Making a Living.
  6. Paul Newman said, “I just happen to think that in life we need to be a little like the farmer who puts back into the soil what he takes out.” Recognizing the wisdom of these words, let us begin rebuilding our economy from the ground up, asking:
    • What would the world be like if we invested 50% of our assets within 50 miles of where we live?
    • What if there were a new generation of companies that gave away 50% of their profits?
    • What if there were 50% more organic matter in our soil 50 years from now?


You can find out more information about Slow Money on their website:




Big business farms are not only questionable in their health practices and environmental practices, but as an economic driver, are not sustainable for everyone and are causing economic problems as a result of their dominance in the food market.  We have to ask ourselves, “Do we really want our food from a handful of food sources?  My answer is a resounding “NO!”  Almost weekly, we read or hear about another food recall from the grocery stores.  Early this summer, one well-known food company that makes toddler food that my youngest grandchildren love had a recall due to listeria outbreak.  That recall brought the scare to another level for me and I immediately contacted my son and daughter-in-law.  The food in question was in the garbage before they went to work that morning, thankfully.    


Back to the main point, where do you want your money to go?  Do we really want our money to go to a family that controls a fortune equal to the wealth of the bottom 42 percent of Americans combined?  This same company built a big marketing campaign claiming it was selling food produced by local farmers.  Yeah, they were offering extremely low, poverty level deals to the local farmers.  Sorry store-who-shall-not-be-named with the massive parking lot, I’m not impressed.  (As an aside, I have still have not forgiven them for cutting down all those trees to pave an unnecessarily large parking lot, but that’s another blog.)  So for me, no, I don’t want my money going to them.


In the publishing business, 95% of all books published are by companies owned by only five corporations.  To reverse that sentence, five corporations own 95% of all book publishing companies.  For an author who is published by one of the 5% that is not owned by the Big 5, it gives me freedom that other authors do not necessarily have.  However, it also makes it harder on me because I have to handle marketing on my own and often times my own selling, which is one of the reasons I can empathize with the local farmers at our Market.  Our food sources are rapidly moving to mirror that trend to massive ownership.  Currently, 10 corporations control most of the world food supply.  All these corporations have profits in the billions annually as they control food sources, labor, costs, and most importantly, they control what and how people eat.  (I’ve outlined another blog about “what and how people eat” and how farmer’s markets make it better.  Later…)


I know I’m sounding real doomsday here and I’m sorry.  But, it brings me to the positive point I want to make.  We are fortunate that we have alternatives.  We can choose to whom our money goes and we can choose what we eat.  When we purchase our food from our neighbors at the local farmers’ market, not only are we getting good quality food that’s a lot healthier than the highly processed food of questionable safety, we are supporting the local economy.  You help pay for the college education for your neighbor’s children, you help pay for uniforms of a local high school band color guard member, you supplement someone’s retirement, and by the way, these aren’t just randomly selected phrases, these are real examples of slow money being spent at Coastal Alabama Farmers and Fishermens Market. 


In addition, our neighbors are controlling the cost of what we pay for our foods.  Most of the time, when I’m told how much my purchase will be, my response is “You’re kidding?  You’re not charging me enough.”   I said that one Saturday to a farmer and he said, “You’re right.  Here. Have another cucumber,” and he threw another vegetable in my bag.  Our choice, build the wealthy empire of people of questionable ethics or support our neighbors who treat us fairly and keep our money locally.  It’s an easy choice.  See you at the Market.



The original premise of Recipe of the Week was to stroll through the Market, pick up a few items, and take them home to create a recipe.  Also, I have a self-imposed rule that I must use at least three items.  Of course, I’ve broken the premise a few times and will do so again this week.  Two items in this week’s recipe come from the CSA box I received this week as well as corn I bought several weeks ago and had in my freezer.  So, the spirit of the premise remains, just slightly bent.




1 sweet potato (CSA)

Kernels of one ear of corn (several vendors)

1 can of black beans (I use Eden’s because of no BPA in its can linings) drained and rinsed

Grape tomatoes (CSA) quartered

Basil (from a plant purchased at the Market)

Olive oil

Cayenne pepper

Sea salt




  1. Peel and dice the sweet potato, approximately bite sized pieces.  Coat with olive oil.  Sprinkle with sea salt and cayenne pepper.  Cook in a shallow baking dish at 450° for 30 minutes.
  2. In a separate baking dish, sprinkle corn kernels with sea salt and cayenne pepper.  Bake at the same time as the sweet potato.
  3. Warm the black beans approximately five minutes at 450°.
  4. In a bowl, line the bottom with sweet potato chunks.  Add corn and black beans. 
  5. Top with tomato quarters.
  6. Add torn basil.


I had this for lunch with a big glass of water on my meatless day.


Enjoy and I’ll see you at the Market.


Bob Zeanah

Author of No Anchor (published November 2015)

Available online from Amazon or Barnes and Noble or Books a Million

Author of Work to Do (published July 2014)

Available online from Amazon or Barnes & Noble or Books a Million

14410 Oak Street

Magnolia Springs AL  36555

251-752-5174 mobile device 

Fourth of July Brunswick Stew

Overwhelming Information and a 4th of July Recipe

Do you feel overwhelmed with information about “healthy eating?”  In spite of all the advice we receive about healthy eating, Americans still suffer from higher rates of obesity and chronic diseases caused by poor eating habits more so than ever before.  One major problem, in my opinion, is that over the years we have received so much contradictory information that we tend to quit listening.  Fats are bad.  No, wait, we need good fats.  We need high carbohydrate diets.  No, wait, carbs are bad.  High protein diets.  No, wait, meat is bad.  Lots of seafood.  No, wait, heavy metals in fish are bad.  So, we give up and go through the fast food drive-in.

What we really should be doing is following relatively simple advice: eat a variety of foods, especially fresh fruits and vegetables; whole grains; and farm fresh eggs and meats.  Get more exercise.  And watch how much we eat (guilty).  Stripping away some of the advice that I find difficult to believe, I have found some advice along the way that makes sense.  Sorry, I don’t remember all the sources or I would properly give references.


  • If your grandparents wouldn’t recognize something as being food, don’t eat it.
  • Don’t eat anything you can’t pronounce.  (Similar to the grandparent advice)
  • Eat plenty of seasonal foods.  (Sounds like an invitation to a farmers’ market)
  • Add a variety of plant-based foods to your diet. (ditto above)
  • Eat your vegetables colorfully.  (I like this plain, simple advice.  Of course, following this advice would result in eating foods that provide a variety of vitamins and nutrients.)
  • Never eat an amount of meat or seafood larger than the palm of your hand.  (This one is the hardest for me, but it’s a good way to ration proportionally the amount I need … and no more.)


Obviously, the best place for us to find the foods we need is at Coastal Alabama Farmers and Fishermens Market and Forland Family Market.  Nothing makes me feel healthier than a plate full of vegetables on Saturday night after having selected foods at the Market based on the advice above.  Just not too much, I keep reminding myself.  Plus, there are a variety of farm raised meats available in unique sizes (like the size of my palm) other than the factory produced versions in grocery stores and a variety of seafood caught in the Gulf.


Another thing I love to do at the market is talk with the farmers and vendors about how they prepare foods.  They have lots of ideas and are willing to spend time telling you.  (Okay, when customers are stacked up waiting, I just come back later when they’re not busy.) Baking, stir frying, lots of ways other than, as my mother always put it, “drowning your vegetables and cooking the nutrients out.”  By the way, another thing my mother always said that I thought was good advice that she gave me, “You weren’t born loving fried chicken.  Bake it.”  But, that’s another blog.

In other matters, in my family we have our traditional foods for holidays and most of the time, the foods are not what others might consider to be traditional.  For instance, for Thanksgiving, we have gumbo or some other seafood dish.  For New Years’ Day, we have red beans and rice for good luck.   Here’s recipe for our Fourth of July meal tradition, including ingredients that can be found at the Market.  Normally, I share recipes based on foods I found that day at the Market, but this is a special holiday recipe that will take a little planning ahead and I offer to you my recipe for Brunswick Stew utilizing ingredients from the Market.


Fourth of July Brunswick Stew

“Life without liberty is like a body without spirit.”  ~ Kahlil Gibran




Whole chicken (NatureNine Farms)

2 cups of thinly sliced onions (from various vendors)

2 cups of diced celery (Forland Family Market)

1 ham hock (George Family Farm or NatureNine Farms)

1 28 oz can of crushed tomatoes (I prefer Muir Glen)

¼ cup chopped parsley (plants available at the Market)

1 diced jalapeno pepper (various vendors)

1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce

1 pound potatoes (from various vendors) (Any type will do, but I like red potatoes quartered)

3 cups lima beans (from various vendors, but if not available then frozen will have to do)

3 cups corn (from various vendors, but if not available then frozen will have to do)

Sea salt

Ground pepper

Hot sauce




1.Cook a whole chicken in a large pot with water.  Slow, rolling boil about 4 hours.  Add water as needed to keep covered, but just barely. 

2.Let cool.  Pull meat, tearing into small pieces, and set aside.  Discard bones and chicken skin.

3.Add onions, celery, and green peppers to the broth.  Add sea salt and ground pepper.  Cook on medium heat until vegetables are wilted.

4.Add ham hock, tomatoes, parsley, jalapeno, and Worcestershire.  Cook on low for 90 minutes.  At this point until the end you want to let the water evaporate and make a thick stew.  Go easy on adding water as you will want a thick stew unless you are expecting a lot of company and then do as they say in Louisiana, “Baptize it.”

5.In another pot, cook diced potatoes under tender.  Drain.  Let cool.  Mash coarsely and reserve.  (Note:  I save potato water for soups and stews.  You can add this water to the stew if you need more water)

6.Add lima beans and cook for 20 minutes. 

7.Cut off any meat from the ham hock and return to the stew pot. Add chicken back to the stew.      

8.Add corn and cook 10 minutes.

9.Add potatoes and cook 10 minutes.

10.Turn off heat and let sit covered for 1 hour.  (If still watery, let sit uncovered)

11.Warm the stew to serving temperature when ready to eat.


I serve this stew with cornbread and a selection of pilsner beer and red and white wine.  Set the table with sea salt and a bottle of hot sauce for individual tastes.


I hope you enjoy.  Happy 4th of July!


See you at the Market. 

Egg – Crab Cake – Grits Stack

Farmers’ Market Nerd

One Saturday morning recently when the weather was pleasant, I ate breakfast on my front porch.  During the week, I usually have oatmeal and eggs for breakfast fulfilling nutritional needs and doctor’s suggestions, but weekends are spent being more adventurous with my breakfast – still nutritious, but a little more variety.  On this particular morning as I was eating breakfast and making out a grocery list for purchases at the Coastal Alabama Farmers and Fishermens Market and at Forland Family Farm, I stopped making notes and looked at my breakfast – two eggs (Farmers’ Market), a roasted new potato (Farmers’ Market) with rosemary (from a plant purchased at the Farmers’ Market), grilled zucchini (Farmers’ Market), and banana nut bread (Forland).  I thought, You’ve become a Farmers’ Market Nerd!  Of course, I can’t think of a downside to being such a nerd.

My oldest son lives in Memphis and when I go visit, one of our regular stops is the Memphis Farmers’ Market.  My youngest son lived in Denver for three years and I visited him three times and that meant three visits to the Denver Farmers’ Market.  Before that time, he was in graduate school at The University of Texas in Austin and we made a couple of trips to the Austin Farmers’ Market.  He moved to Dallas a year ago and is currently looking for a new apartment and is considering one particular apartment based on the fact that it’s close to the Dallas Farmers’ Market.  During a recent visit to see him, we went to the Dallas Farmers’ Market.  In addition, my mother lives in Tuscaloosa and whenever I visit her, we go to one of the Farmers’ Markets there. 

Healthy, locally produced food, nice people. Pretty good combination. If I’m a Farmers’ Market Nerd, so be it.

Recently, as I was telling Heather Pritchard about visiting the Dallas Farmers’ Market as well as the others I have visited she asked me, “What do they have that we don’t have?”  Good question from someone obviously devoted to her job and wanting to ever improve the quality of the Farmers’ Market experience for customers. 

I thought a moment and came up the fact that Austin, Texas being Austin, Texas, the Farmers’ Market had a stage with a music group entertaining the customers.  Memphis Farmers’ Market had food trucks – one for tacos and one for gyros – the times I’ve visited.  Those are the only two things I saw that Coastal Alabama Farmers and Fishermens Market does not have.  Of course, three of these markets are in huge urban areas and our Market matches theirs. 

However, the one question Heather did not ask me was, “What do we have that they don’t have?”  I would have answered, “The nicest people you’ll meet anywhere.  The fairest prices you’ll find anywhere. Seafood.  Fresh brewed coffee.  And, a fantastic Market Director!”  Of course, having Forland’s nearby increases the options that other markets do not have.  Amazing for Coastal Alabama.

Recipe for this week is not really a recipe as it is something I like to put together for a weekend breakfast.  You’ll note that everything is from either the Coastal Alabama Farmers and Fishermens Market or from Forland Family Farms.

Egg – Crab Cake – Grits Stack



Bayou Cora Farms Heirloom Grits (vendor at the Market)

Crab Cake (J&K Farms)

Tejas salsa (if not a vendor at the Market, available from Forland)

Egg (available from several vendors)

Parsley (from a plant I purchased at the Market)

Butter (Forland)




  1. Heat a frozen crab cake at 375° for 40 minutes.  (This is almost the exact length of time it takes me to walk my dog in the morning, which I do while the crab cake cooks in the toaster oven.) 
  2. Prepare grits according to package directions.  Add butter (optional).
  3. Cook an egg according to preference – poached, over easy, or sunny side up work best.
  4. Assemble on a plate:
    1. Ladle grits, flattening slightly
    2. Place a crab cake on top of the grits
    3. Place a cooked egg on top of the crab cake
    4. Dollop of salsa on top of the egg
    5. Sprinkle with parsley
    6. Enjoy


This recipe can be expanded, of course, to fit the number of people eating breakfast. 


See you at the Market.








Cucumber – Tomato – Avocado – Rice Salad

There is a theory, an obscure, unsubstantiated theory for sure, but a theory that the human body desires or craves the nutrition derived from fresh, in season, fruits and vegetables.  If you enjoy the first strawberries or blueberries of the season as much as I do, you probably understand that feeling of tasting the first of the crop.  When we’ve gone months without fresh berries (no, grocery store berries just don’t satisfy) and the nutrients available, there is something immensely satisfying in the taste.  Of course, the same feeling results in first vegetables.  Is there anything better than a fresh off the vine tomato when they first start producing?  The theory is that our body is receiving nutrients that it craves and the nutrients are in greater supply in a fresh product. 


The theory also includes a component the human body will crave a substitute of fats, salt, and sugar when the nutrients are not available.  Our bodies tell us that nutrients from fresh fruit and vegetables are needed and we substitute drive-through fast food and super sweetened drinks instead.  Even after finishing a hamburger, fries, and drink, we will still feel something is missing – a lingering hunger for something.  That something must be nutrients from fresh food.


Sometimes from the Market I buy a vegetable that just came in and for supper I will either steam it or lightly grilled the vegetable.  This spring I got a bunch of the first yellow wax beans.  I steamed them, added a little sea salt and flavored vinegar, and I felt healthier with each bite.  One of my favorite vegetables to eat fresh is zucchini.  I slice zucchini lengthwise, lightly rub olive oil over each piece, lightly salt with sea salt, and grill it.  While still crunchy, it makes a great sandwich on whole wheat bread or as a side dish. 


The recipe this month includes some fresh vegetables from vendors at the Market plus some other foods to make a salad.


Cucumber – Tomato – Avocado – Rice Salad




1 Cucumber (available from various vendors)

8-10 Cherry Tomatoes (available from various vendors)

1 Avocado (Forland Family Farm)

½ cup of Farmer’s Cheese diced (from Forland Family Farm)

¼ - ½ cup whole grain rice (chilled – this is a great way to use leftover rice)

Note:  We use a mix of different whole grain rice at our house, but other grains such as Quinoa work well.

Cilantro (from a plant I purchased from Lilly)

Olive Oil

Balsamic Vinegar

Sea salt

Ground Pepper





  1. Peel and dice cucumber ~ ½ inch pieces.  Add to a large bowl that will allow mixing.
  2. Quarter cherry tomatoes and (Any tomatoes will do, but I like the flavor of cherry tomatoes in a salad.  However, when the Cherokee Purples come in, I’ll use that tomato.)
  3. Dice avocado into ½ inch pieces or larger and add.
  4. Add diced cheese. 
  5. Add chilled whole grain rice. 
  6. Mix the ingredients with your hands.
  7. Add finely chopped cilantro ~ 1 teaspoon.  Cilantro can overpower, use discreetly.
  8. Mix ingredients.
  9. Sprinkle lightly with olive oil and balsamic vinegar (about ~ ½ - 1 tablespoon of each to taste)
  10. Mix
  11. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and ground pepper.
  12. Mix.
  13. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
  14. Stir the mixture before serving.


Note:  This salad lends itself to using other fresh vegetables available – radishes, zucchini, squash, bell peppers, and/or carrots.  I just included the vegetables I found the day I was shopping for the purposes of this salad.


This salad can be a side dish or a stand-alone salad.  Also, the salad can be served on Craine Creek Farms lettuce (available at Forland Family Farm). 


I like this salad as a stand-alone to accompany a thick vegetable soup.  Goes great with red or white wine.  My wife likes to eat the salad as a late-night snack with whole wheat crackers.




See you at the Market.


Bob Zeanah

Author of No Anchor Available online from Amazon or Barnes and Noble or Books a Million

Author of Work to Do Available online from Amazon or Barnes & Noble or Books a Million

14410 Oak Street

Magnolia Springs AL  36555

251-752-5174 mobile device 

Coastal Alabama Fritatta

You must understand that I am an unabashed fan of the Coastal Alabama Farmers’ and Fishermen’s Market; I make no pretense about it.  Fresh, healthy food from local people.  However, the experience of shopping at the Market goes deeper than that simple, definitive statement.  The vendors are, without a doubt, some of the nicest people you’ll meet anywhere and they are passionate about what they do.  For an example of that passion, I urge you to stop by the Sweet Bee Farm booth sometime and strike up a conversation with Daryl Pichoff.  First, he’ll give you a sample of honey and then, if you start asking questions, you’ll learn how passionate he is about the purity of his honey, about protecting his bees (of course, it’s well known that something dreadful is happening to bee populations), and about his selectivity regarding where he will allow his bees to collect pollen and pollenate plants.  From him, I learned some of the methods that local farmers are using to minimize or eliminate pesticides from their crops and, in turn, that protects his bee populations.  Not only do I feel better about buying his honey, but I feel better about buying vegetables from local farmers who are using careful methods to protect their customers from harmful pesticides.  As I stated, fresh, healthy food from local people.

On the subject of honey, for many years, researchers have attempted to verify claims that consuming a small amount of local honey each day can help alleviate the symptoms of airborne allergies.  While medical researchers can neither confirm nor refute the beneficial claims, I can report that formerly I was a serious allergy sufferer being in my doctor’s office two times a year seeking relief from pollen-related allergies.  More than a year ago, I started adding a ½ teaspoon of Sweet Bee Farm honey to my non-GMO oatmeal each morning.  Since that time, I feel better … a lot better.  I have now survived two major pollen seasons with little or no noticeable detrimental effects from the pollen.  Some will dismiss my experience as an example of the placebo effect and maybe they’re right.  I don’t care, I’m adding Sweet Bee Farm honey to my diet every day because it makes me feel better and healthier.

As promised, this week’s recipe is my favorite Sunday morning breakfast.  Let’s call it a Coastal Alabama adaptation of an Italian classic dish – the frittata.  As stated before in this blog, each recipe will have at least three ingredients purchased at Coastal Alabama Farmers’ and Fishermen’s Market or from Forland Family Farm.  Also, as a reminder, I’m not a trained chef and make no claims to be other that a self-taught cook who cooks with foods he loves.  So, if you see a cooking instruction that doesn’t read like a professionally written cookbook would be written, you’re right.  Enjoy it anyway.

Coastal Alabama Frittata


2 yard eggs (available from numerous vendors) at room temperature

2-3 small red potatoes or Yukon Gold potatoes (available from numerous vendors)

Handful of diced tomatoes or quartered cherry or grape tomatoes (available from numerous vendors)  

Optional ingredients: No more than a heaping tablespoon of diced carrots, diced bell pepper, and/or diced green onions (all available from numerous vendors)

¼  cup – ½ cup of diced cheese from AA Farm  (I use Montasio, but a softer cheese such a Fontina or Mozzarella works best and you can even add shredded soft cheese after cooking if you want more cheese.)

Basil and parsley (from plants purchased from Camellia Gardens)

Butter (I use the Amish butter from Forland’s)

Olive oil

Salt and pepper


  1. Scrub potatoes clean and quarter potatoes into bite sized chunks.  Coat with olive oil and salt slightly.

  2. Bake potatoes at 350° until browned.  Remove from oven and leave the oven on.

  3. Warm a skillet over medium heat.

  4. Scramble eggs with salt and ground pepper.

  5. Add butter to skillet.

  6. Add potatoes and arrange evenly.

  7. (Optional step) Add vegetables and sprinkle lightly with salt.  Arrange vegetables evenly.

  8. Add eggs and rotate the skillet until egg mixture is distributed evenly.

  9. Add diced herbs.

  10. Add cheese.

  11. With a rubber spatula, lift the egg mixture lightly around the edges.

  12. While the egg mixture is still very runny, put the skillet in the oven for 10 minutes.

  13. Remove and again lift the egg mixture lightly just around the edges.

  14. Let sit for 2-3 minutes.  

  15. Slide the frittata onto a plate and add sprig of parsley for garnish.  


Next week:  Another Coastal Alabama adaptation of another Italian classic, but made in a slow cooker.

See you at the Market.

Bob Zeanah, Author

Work to Do.  Available online from Amazon or Barnes & Noble or Books a Million

No Anchor.  Available online from Amazon or Barnes and Noble or Books a Million

14410 Oak Street

Magnolia Springs AL  36555

251-752-5174 mobile device 

Recipes from the market- Black eye Peas


The entire experience of using Coastal Alabama Farmers’ and Fishermen’s Market results in using fresh foods as well as using what’s “on hand” in order to create something economical, healthy, and good.  Many times when I come home from shopping at the Market with a head of broccoli, I cut into florets or a bunch of carrots, I dice into bite-sized pieces, and just steaming either or both of these slightly is wonderful.  Add a little salt and/or some flavored vinegar and it’s a treat.  That’s one of the great things about being fresh from the farmers who grow vegetables – most food is picked the day before and nothing tastes better than a really fresh vegetable – something you can’t find in a grocery store.  Fresh steamed broccoli or carrots for lunch with a slice of bread.  Fantastic!


Another advantage of cooking from items selected from the Market is the economic value – both time and money – of using what’s on hand with what I picked up at the Market.  The recipe that follows is based on the fresh ingredients purchased from the Market as well as some dried peas that I had on hand.  Of course, adding fresh ingredients is what makes the recipes so much better.


Recipe for Black-eyed Peas




[Note: First three ingredients purchased at Coastal Alabama Farmers’ and Fishermen’s Market as well as a clipping from the thyme plant that I bought at the Market and is currently growing in a pot on my back deck.]


1 diced bacon slice (purchased from George Family Farm)

1 Tablespoon diced onion (can be purchased from several vendors)

Salsa to taste (Purchased from Tony’s Tejas Salsa)

Dried black-eyed peas (when in season, I buy fresh peas, but on this day, peas were not in season and I used dried peas stored in a mason jar)

Water/Chicken broth mix ~ 4:1)

Thyme (from a plant purchased from Lilly at the Market)



In a pan, cook diced bacon over medium heat until browned.

Add diced onions and cook until translucent.

Add dried peas and coat with bacon oil.

Add all the ingredients to a slow cooker and turn to high for 1 hour.

Change the setting on the slow cooker to low and cook 3 hours.


Serve with generous ladling of salsa on top.  Last week, I wrote about having ham steaks that I had with black-eyed peas, some brown rice, and a glass of red wine.


In a few months from now when peas are fresh, I will use a similar for fresh peas, which I will, of course, purchase from the Market.


Next week I’m going to share with you my favorite Sunday breakfast using nothing but Market ingredients.


See you at the Market.

Bob Zeanah

Author of No Anchor (published November 2015)

Available online from Amazon or Barnes and Noble or Books a Million

Author of Work to Do (published July 2014)

Available online from Amazon or Barnes & Noble or Books a Million

14410 Oak Street

Magnolia Springs AL  36555

251-752-5174 mobile device


Chopped Ham Steaks

Welcome to our new blog. I am Heather Pritchard. As Market manager, I have come to know many of our loyal customers. Often we delight in sharing how wonderful the products are and what dishes we have created. Cooking from the market is an experience where the plan comes together as we shop. Eating local is about what was harvested today! What is fresh and available changes with the seasons. This creates diversity in our diets and allows creativity in our daily meals. Bob Zeanah is a friendly face each week. He is also a writer. I welcome him as our first guest blogger. He will be sharing his weekly cooking experience with simple meals that have come together for him each week.  If you would like to share your recipes from the CAFF Market and from Forland Family Market. Please let me know in person at the market or by email at Here's Bob!

On a Saturday evening, after having visited Coastal Alabama Farmers and Fishermens Market, as I was creating supper without the use of a recipe, I realized that as a result of my weekly visits this style was now the way I cooked most of the time -- created my own recipes using ingredients purchased at the Farmers' Market or from Forland’s.  Why not write down these recipes, share with the people from whom I buy stuff and share with other people who shop as I do?   A few years ago, there was a cookbook that won several book awards, both as a non-fiction book and as a cookbook.  The cookbook consisted solely of recipes using foods found at the San Mateo, California Farmers’ Market.  While I’ve never been there, I am certain what we have at Coastal Alabama beats anything they might have in San Mateo.  Also, I’m certain that our vendors are some of the nicest people you will meet anywhere. 


At Heather Pritchard’s encouragement and invoking my own provincial pride, I offer a recipe to you each week.  By the way, I am not a trained chef/cook by any means.  This is just me experimenting.  As a caveat, I created a self-imposed rule that Coastal Alabama cookbook recipes MUST contain at least three items purchased at the Farmers' Market and/or Forland Family Farm and identify from whom purchased, if possible.  Here’s my first recipe to share.


Recipe for Chopped Ham Steaks



[Note:  First three ingredients were purchased at Coastal Alabama Farmers and Fishermen’s Market]


4 chopped ham steaks (purchased from George Family Farm)

1 shiitake mushroom (purchased from Terry Underwood) cut in strips (1inch X ¼ inch)

1 Tablespoon of diced onion (could be purchased from several vendors)

Flour and black pepper mixed 1 cup & ½ teaspoon

Olive oil

~½ cup White wine

~¼ cup No salt added chicken broth




Dredge chopped ham steaks in flour/black pepper mix

Over medium heat, in a large pan, add olive oil.

Cook ham steaks, allow room between each, for 5 minutes.  Turn, cook 5 more minutes.

Remove steaks to warm platter

Turn heat to high.  When debris is golden brown add white wine and chicken broth.  Deglaze pan.

Add strips of the mushroom and diced onions.

Cook down stirring constantly until mushrooms and onions are soft and liquid is reduced in half.

Remove heat and let rest 5 minutes.

Serve ham steaks and ladle reduction sauce over the steaks.


This is what I had for supper that night along with brown rice, black-eyed peas (recipe to follow next week), and a glass of red wine.  


See you Saturday at the market.


Bob Zeanah

Author of No Anchor (published November 2015)

Available online from Amazon or Barnes and Noble or Books a Million

Author of Work to Do (published July 2014)

Available online from Amazon or Barnes & Noble or Books a Million

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Magnolia Springs AL  36555

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