Spring Holiday Guide | CUESA

Ferry Plaza Farmers Market »

Sat 8am–2pm | Tue & Thu 10am–2pm | SF

Jack London Square Farmers Market »

Sun 9am–2pm | Oakland

March 18, 2016

Spring Holiday Guide

As the days grow longer and warmer, the change of seasons is evident at the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market: citrus and winter squash give way to tender spring greens, strawberries, and asparagus. This is a rewarding time to be a market regular, because shopping is like a weekly hunt for new treasures of spring! Sugar snap peas, green garlic, and fresh goat cheese have already made appearances, and before long, early stone fruit will be on its way.

From natural egg dyes to seasonal brunch recipes, we’ve put together some farmers market shopping and menu ideas to help you take advantage of the best local bounty in your spring equinox, Easter, and Passover celebrations.

See our spring seasonality synopsis >

Pasture-Raised Eggs and Natural Egg Dyes

Chickens start laying more eggs in the spring, and indeed, the egg serves as the perfect symbol for the season, representing rebirth and renewal. The Ferry Plaza Farmers Market only allows pasture-raised eggs, which can be found at Eatwell Farm (Saturday) and Rolling Oaks Ranch (Saturday). Beautiful au naturel or dyed, these eggs come in a variety of colors, from creamy white to latte brown to Ameraucana blue.

The perfect hard-boiled egg: Place the eggs in a single layer in a pan with enough cold water to cover by 1 inch. Bring the water to a boil, then remove from the heat, cover, and let stand for 12 minutes. Run the eggs under cold tap water or place in an ice water bath until cooled to room temperature.

Natural egg dyes: Did you know you can use farmers market produce like cabbage, beets, and onion skins to create a rainbow of chemical-free egg dyes? Check out our Guide to Natural Egg Dyes, which includes a useful color guide.

Farmers Market Easter Basket Goodies

Check out these Easter basket treats from the farmers market—just add a basket and a bow!

  • Candied citrus, Nordic syrups, and drink kits for Easter brunch cocktails from June Taylor Company

Baked Goods and Brunch Specials

  • Carrot cakes from Craftsman and Wolves: Spring Carrot Cake with Lime Macarons; and Moist Carrot Cake with Citrus, Vanilla, Pastel Macarons Filled with Lime Valrhona White Chocolate Ganache (preorders suggested)
  • Treats from Batter Bakery: honey vanilla bunnies, lavender sea salt bunnies, Easter shortbread, carrot cakes, strawberry buttermilk upside down cake, Meyer lemon bars

Easter Brunch Recipes

Celebrate the flavors of spring with these seasonally inspired offerings from the CUESA recipe archive. For more seasonal recipes and holiday inspiration, follow us on Pinterest.

Brunch Basics

Basic Frittata | Amie Bailey, Williams-Sonoma

Asparagus, Leek, and Goat Cheese Strata | Adam Timney, Starbelly

French Toast with Lemon-Ricotta Filling and Fresh Citrus Compote | Thy Tran, Executive Chef, CUESA

Elegantly Simple Deviled Eggs | Sandra Keros, Healthy Focus

Pea Shoot Salad with Fava Beans | Kimberley Hasselbrink, The Year in Food

Deviled Eggs with Quick-Pickled Asparagus | Jodi Liano, San Francisco Cooking School

Strawberry Shortcake with Goat Cheese Cream and Balsamic Reduction | Susanne Stampke, Pastry Chef, The Plant Café Organic

Citrus-Strawberry Muffins | Jen Musty, Batter Bakery

Cocktail: Elementary, My Dear Watsonville | Greg Lindgren, Rye

Spring Greens

Radish, Rhubarb, and Strawberry Salad | Louisa Shafia, The New Persian Kitchen

Spinach Salad a la Grecque | Joyce Goldstein, cookbook author

Chickpea and Dandelion Zuppa | Christophe Hille, formerly of A16

Tender Spring Green Salad with Almonds, Radishes, Chèvre, and Kumquat | Leif Hedendal, local chef

Kumquat and Basil Salad with Shiro Miso Dressing | Pooja Mottl, Pooja’s Way

Delta Asparagus and Frisée Salad | Francis Hogan, Bluestem Brasserie

Tips for a Sustainable Passover

Also known as Chag Ha-Aviv (“holiday of spring”), Passover is a time to acknowledge and celebrate the new season. There are many ways to make your Seder plates more sustainable, such as using fresh, local farmers market ingredients for karpas, maror, and charoset. Check out Hazon’s Healthy, Sustainable Passover Resources.

Seder Plate Shopping List

Get all your seder plate ingredients at the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market:

Maror (bitter herb)
Horseradish: Knoll Farms

Charoset (chopped fruits and nuts)
Nuts: G. L. Alfieri Farms, Glashoff Farms, Bella Viva Orchards
Apples: Hidden Star Orchards, K & J Orchards
Dates: Flying Disc Ranch

Beitzah (hard-boiled egg)
Eggs: Eatwell Farm, Rolling Oaks Ranch

Karpas (non-bitter herb)
Parsley: County Line Harvest, Eatwell Farm

Z’roa (roasted bone)
Lamb shank: Stemple Creek Ranch

On Saturday, look for special Passover offerings from Wise Sons Jewish Delicatessen.

No-Rise Passover Recipes

Charoset | Evan Bloom, Wise Sons Jewish Delicatessen

Turkish Lamb with Green Garlic (Kodrero con Ajo Fresco) | Joyce Goldstein, Sephardic Flavors

Grilled Leg of Goat with Charoset Stuffing and Fava Bean, Parsley, Arugula, and Frisée Salad with “Four Glasses of Wine” Vinaigrette | Scott Youkilis, Maverick Restaurant

Spicy Carrots | Sherri Brooks Vinton, author of Put ‘em Up

Snap Pea Soup with Mint and Lemon | Kimberley Hasselbrink, The Year in Food

Braised Green Cabbage | Molly Stevens, cookbook author

Warm Strawberry Salad | Daniel Clayton and Trace Leighton, Origen


CUESA (Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture) is dedicated to cultivating a sustainable food system through the operation of farmers markets and educational programs. Learn More »