I am like… oh, 95% positive that I made the first purchase of the season at Carmel’s Farmer’s Market on Saturday morning.
I had been in Indianapolis Friday night for dinner with friends who were running the next morning in the 500 Festival’s 5k and Mini Marathon.
I, however, was not.
I can power through an intense spin class like a champ but am pretty sure that I have not run more than two miles since last summer.
I blame the winter.
So, the girls all rose early to get to the race and I began the drive home. On the way, I stopped in downtown Carmel to check out their Farmer’s Market.
It was opening day of the market for 2014, but I had never been to the market period. I had always heard great things so I was eager to see what they had to offer.
I got there about forty minutes before the market opened thanks to the early race start so I grabbed a Starbucks and brainstormed a few blog ideas in my car while I waited. Ten minutes to open I decided to hop out of my car and see what was going on.
I took a lap around the market and was beyond impressed.
There was so much available, despite the cold, late spring. I even saw tomatoes. Obviously, green house tomatoes. But still… tomatoes!
By the time the mayor began her opening day speech and rang a bell to signal the commence of the market, I was standing underneath a vendor’s tent that was selling vibrant rhubarb and big, green spears of asparagus handing over some cash.
Note: There’s no prize or celebration for the first purchase of the season. Dang!
They were the two things I was looking for and I couldn’t wait to get them home.
Rhubarb is a perennial vegetable and is typically cooked in sugar to be added to desserts. Rhubarb is typically harvested in mid to late spring. The color of rhubarb is the best. It can be from deep reds to pinks with a little green.
I had never had rhubarb until I started dating Adam. Rhubarb crisp is one of his families most loved desserts.
I thought about making the crisp but then remembered that Cinco de Mayo was just around the corner and decided to use the rhubarb to add subtle flavor to one my favorite Mexican vacation cocktails, the mojito.
Mojitos are incredibly refreshing and are not as sweet as a margarita. And, with all the mint left over from the Derby’s Juleps it seemed perfect for Cinco de Mayo!
3 large stalks rhubarb, thinly sliced
1 cup light brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
1 ½ cups water
Place all ingredients in a medium pot, stir to combine. Bring to a boil and then simmer for about five minutes or until rhubarb is tender.
Strain rhubarb collecting the liquid mixture in a bowl. Clean pot and pour liquid mixture back into pot. Boil over medium heat until liquid becomes a syrup. About fifteen minutes.
Let cool completely before using.
6-7 mint leaves, torn
3 tablespoons rhubarb syrup
1 ounce white rum
Fresh lime juice
Add the mint, syrup and rum to tall glass. Stir to combine. Add ice and top with club soda and juice from a lime wedge. Garnish with mint and lime wedge.