You might not be able to tell by looking at it, but the peanut is actually a member of the legume family, making it more of a pea or bean than a nut, botanically speaking. Originating in South America, the peanut was grown commercially in the US in the 1800s, when it was used for oil, as a cocoa substitute, and occasionally for food or livestock feed. Sixty years later, during the Civil War, soldiers turned to peanuts as a quick, inexpensive snack, and they returned home with a taste for the nut, leading to the popularity of roasted peanuts at baseball games and circuses. Now the peanut is one of the most popular and well-loved nuts across the country, contributing more than $4 billion to the US economy each year.
As equally delicious in a spicy dipping sauce for chicken skewers as it is in a chocolate-drizzled brittle, the peanut blends effortlessly into a wide array of recipes, and is sure to please children and adults alike. The peanut contains 25% more protein than any other true nut, boasts an antioxidant count that rivals most fruits, and is loaded with heart-healthy fats that are associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.
Pears, wine and cheese are a classic combination. Here are some suggested pairings for pear varieties and cheeses you can find at the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, with wines that are produced locally.
Warren pears with Point Reyes Farmstead Blue Cheese and a late-harvest Sauvignon Blanc
Bartlett pears with triple-cream cheese like Mt. Tam or Red Hawk and a sweet Muscat wine
Bosc Pears with fresh goat cheese, honey, and an unoaked Chardonnay
Asian pears with Capricious cheese or St George and Pinot Noir
In Season at the Market
Product descriptions are generously shared and created by CUESA (Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture) in San Francisco. CUESA is dedicated to cultivating a sustainable food system through the operation of the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market and its educational programs. Visit CUESA at www.cuesa.org.