by Steven Doyle
A leisurely stroll through the Dallas Farmers Market Saturday morning netted plenty of excitement as we visited with many of the farmers, chefs and even took in a cooking demo by none other than Cane Rosso boss Jay Jerrier.
Before any morning stroll through the downtown Dallas Farmers market it is required of myself to make way to the center of the action outside Shed 2, La Marketa. La Marketa makes many fresh to order taste treats including tacos and gorditas. The gordita has fast become my favorite morning snack. The tiny pocket is made from fresh masa harina and grilled with any number of breakfast choices. Mine is typically overstuffed with eggs, refried beans, queso fresco and chorizo.
Marketa always serves the gordita with a side of fresh made salsa, red or green. Green is my pick, it is a lush thick paste with a bit of heat and a natural sweetness of jalapeno. Sometimes I have them add crema for an even fresher taste.
Straight to the south of La Marketa the Farmers Market sets up a largish tent each weekend and hosts a different chef from the area. This weekend I ran across Jay Jerrier from Cane Rosso as he was prepping bruschetta with his house made mozzarella and a variety of greens, and another bruschetta made from ricotta that his staff makes in house as well.
Before the demo I toured around and visited with the farmers, tasting melons and peaches along the way. I was on a mission to buy some of the Lemley tomatoes we wrote about last week. Seems I made my way out of Canton without procuring some of his vine-ripened reds.
While chatting with Lemley he made mention that he ran out of his peaches and had to send for a second shipment from his farm just over an hour away. Having tasted the peach last week I can see why the hoards were snatching them up.
After making my purchase I headed to Shed 2 to visit with the Justin and Diane Fourton at Pecan Lodge. The sweet young couple were busy making breakfast. For some that was waffles and blueberries, for others it was waffles, blueberries and fried chicken. There is a lot to choose from for an early hour meal, but the waffles seemed to take the lead in orders that morning. The One-Eyed Fiona is also particularly good.
Many were attempting to order BBQ, but they would have to wait another hour as Lurlene (their name for the smoker) was choking through the briskets and ribs gently kissing them with smoke so they would be ready by 11am that day.
It was 10am and time for Jerrier to take his stage, so I sat next to craveDFW reader Slade Armstrong. Jerrier tapped his mic to make sure it was working properly, and immediately went into a great set of 30 minutes discussing how he started his restaurant, the style of pizza he makes and the process they go through to make the ingredients that we enjoy on his pizzas, pastas and sandwiches.
Jerrier was quick witted and kept the crowd laughing with his self-deprecating humor. He made his bruschetta and after the people dispersed he set his sites on the fried chicken he had heard so much about since it was still 10:30am, but I am sure he wanted some of Pecan Lodges now legendary brisket.
Later Jerrier told me that not only did he have the brisket, but the fried chicken as well.
Edit: I spoke with Diane Fourton of Pecan lodge last evening and she assured me that Lurlene was not named after the Simpsons character, as much as I wanted it to be. She mentioned it was instead a family name and that the Simpsons character was spelled differently. We also discussed fried pies at length. Have you had hers yet?