Black Cat Farm Comes to Longmont Market
Black Cat Organic Farm began when its founder, Chef Eric Skokan, realized that the best food he was sourcing for his menu came from his garden. What started as a small passion project has since grown into a 425-acre operation Eric runs with his wife, Jill, on plots across Boulder County. Their hard work has culminated into a thriving restaurant, a published cookbook, two James Beard Award Nominations, and the largest farm-to-table operation in the country.
A well-established community institution, Black Cat has been a staple at the Boulder Farmers Market for over a decade. From their signature wooden barrels, customers can shop from restaurant-quality produce, herbs, grains, and meats to use in their culinary adventures at home, knowing that everything from Black Cat was grown or raised with flavor in mind. In fact, the Black Cat team typically brings extra produce from the market straight to Bramble & Hare to prepare for that evening’s dinner crowd.
This season, Black Cat Organic Farm will join the Longmont Farmers Market as a full-time vendor for the first time. On opening day, Longmont customers flooded the farm stand to scoop up overwintered spinach, spaghetti squash, carrots, sunchokes, beets, and onions. Since Black Cat Farm supplies the majority for Bramble & Hare, the farm is operational year-round – resulting in an impressive early-season spread.
In their greenhouse, Skokan pointed out thousands of onion plants getting ready for their dirt debut in a few weeks. Joining them were peppers, tomatoes, cute-cumbers (a new variety he coined on the spot), and an exciting new experiment for 2023: watermelon!
Swing by the Black Cat booth at the Boulder and Longmont Farmers Market for your weekly dose of local food, agriculture, and community.
Spinach Salad with Goat Cheese Frites from Farm Fork Food
12 medium shallots, peeled
2 teaspoons sunflower oil
2 tablespoons quinoa flour
1⁄2 cup rice flour
1⁄2 cup plus 2 tablespoons soda water
1.5 cups goat cheese
1⁄4 cup garlic oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 sprig fresh thyme
2 tablespoons hazelnuts, toasted
1⁄2 pound spinach
Preheat the oven to 450°F. On a baking sheet, dress the shallots in the sunflower oil and season with salt. Roast until the shallots are beginning to brown and are very tender, about 15 minutes. Let cool then chop the shallots. In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, heat 2 inches of oil to 375°F. Combine the flours in a medium bowl and mix in 1 teaspoon salt and the soda water until smooth; it should be as thick as pancake batter. Form the goat cheese into 12 balls and dip into the batter one at a time, coating them completely. Using a fork and working in batches, fry the balls in the oil until golden, 30 to 60 seconds. Drain on paper towels. In a small saucepan over low heat, heat the garlic oil, vinegar, thyme and hazelnuts until fragrant, about 6 minutes. Season with salt and whisk well. Toss the spinach and roasted shallots with the warm vinaigrette. Season with salt and toss again. Divide among four salad plates. Top with the crispy goat cheese and serve immediately.
This recipe is from the cookbook Farm Fork Food: A Year of Spectacular Recipes Inspired by Black Cat Farm by Eric Skokan.
This article was originally published in the Daily Camera.