Certified Farmers' Market

Certified Farmers’ Market Fresh Pick of the Week: Kale!

Locally-grown organic Kale is this week’s Fresh Pick of the Week at the Coachella Valley Certified Farmers’ MarketsKale is a dark green (and sometimes purple) leafy vegetable that is filled with all sorts of vitamins and nutrients - beta carotene, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Sulforaphane, lutein, calcium, manganese, carotenoids, flavonoids and fiber, to name a few.

Kale is actually a form of cabbage although it does not form a head like modern forms of cabbage. It is also, like cabbage, closely related to Broccoli, Cauliflower, Collard Greens and Brussels Sprouts, and contains many of the same cancer-fighting nutrients and cholesterol-lowering abilities as its cousins. In Kale, though, they are found in a much greater supply. In fact, it’s fair to say that when it comes to vegetables, Kale is quite a nutritional powerhouse. Move over, Spinach. Popeye may be choosing Kale from now on!

Kale has been cultivated on multiple continents, and for thousands of years. Although its actual origin is unknown, it is believed to have originated in ancient Asia (where it is still a popular ingredient in many Asian cuisines). Kale was eaten regularly by the Greeks, and later by the Romans as well. Wandering bands of Celts, who prized Kale as a food source, introduced it into Europe, and European immigrants later brought it with them them to North America. Today, Kale exists (in one variety or another) pretty much throughout the world (except in Antarctica), and is considered one of the world’s most important vegetables. It can be eaten raw (in salads), steamed (which actually increases its cholesterol-lowering abilities), sauteed or boiled. Recently, chefs have even begun baking Kale leaves into crispy and nutritious Kale Chips!

Did You Know: Many of the more colorful varieties of Kale have become popular as ornamental plants, both for their vivid colors, and for their ability to withstand Winter’s freezing temperatures. Garden Shops often market these Kale varieties as Ornamental Cabbage. They look great in flower beds, but the best part is that all of these ornamental varieties are edible, tasty and nutritious. Moreover, their leaves are said to be even sweeter when gathered after a frost!

Price: $2/Bunch or bag

Sidebar/Additional Information:

All Certified Farmers’ Markets accept CalFresh EBT Cards, WIC Farmers’ Market Checks, and Senior Farmers’ Market Checks. The Markets also offer Market Bucks that can be purchased using charge cards or cash, then used at the market for purchases.

Palm Desert Certified Farmers’ Market: NEW HOURS in Palm Desert only (8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.). The Market is held at 72-599 Highway 111 (adjacent to the Palm Desert Chamber of Commerce).

Palm Springs Certified Farmers’ Market: The Market is held at 2300 Baristo Rd. (adjacent to The Camelot Theatres)

La Quinta Certified Farmers’ Market: The Market is held in Old Town La Quinta at 78100 Main Street (off Calle Tampico).

The Certified Farmers’ Markets are the Coachella Valley’s only State and County Certified Farmers’ Markets. That means all the fruits, vegetables, meats and other products that are on sale at the markets have been grown on California Certified farms. In addition, almost all the farms are located within a 90 mile radius of the markets (thus reducing the carbon footprint), and many of the products sold are “USDA Certified Organic.”

The Certified Farmers Markets are sponsored by the Palm Springs Cultural Center, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, which was established to encourage the development of the cultural arts in the Coachella Valley with a specific focus in the areas of film, fine art, live performance, dance, music, and community festivals. The Center is dedicated to advancing education, to nurturing community-wide participation in the cultural arts, and to sponsoring scholarship awards for deserving individuals.

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