The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Cookbook


Pardon me if I am a bit biased and excited about this next entry. It’s about a very special person and her very special book about a very special place. Amelia Saltsman, writer, cooking teacher, producer and host of Fresh from the Farmers’ Market, has just written a book titled The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Cookbook, Seasonal Foods, Simple Recipes, and Stores from the Market and Farm and I am as giddy as I can be just thinking about it. A California institution, the Santa Monica Farmers’ Market is one of my favorite places (it’s right up there with one of my other favorite spots, La Boqueria in Barcelona) and it’s always a treat to pay a visit to this market. It reaffirms everything I love about California — the produce, the people and our geographical location on this big crazy planet. Amelia, who has a deep connection and relationship with the Santa Monica Farmers’ Market, has written a book about all the wonderful things that makes this place so truly special. It’s more than just a cookbook though; it’s a great resource for utilizing the season’s best fruits and vegetables while giving recognition to those who have dedicated their lives in bringing it to us. It’s a worthwhile and commendable effort on the farmers’ and Amelia’s part indeed.


I haven’t had a chance to fully work my way through the book yet (I’m halfway there!) nor have I had a chance to meet Amelia and ask her a few questions;  I plan on doing so in the next few weeks. But I wanted to share the special events that she has coming up during the month of October. And the best part is that she’s not only doing events in Los Angeles but in my hometown of Austin, Texas. How neat is that? Peruse the events, check your calendar and be sure to make it to one of her events. I have it on good authority that they’ll be lovely, informative, delicious and worthwhile. And if you go to Monday night’s event, say hello – I’ll be there!


Monday, October 1, 2007
6:30 p.m.
100 W. Channel Rd.
Santa Monica, CA
For reservations: (310) 454-4544

Brass Cap Restaurant is proud to host author Amelia Saltsman for a signing of her new cookbook The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Cookbook: Seasonal Foods, Simple Recipes, and Stories from the Market and Farm, followed by a seasonal farmers’ market dinner with recipes from Amelia’s book prepared by Brass Cap’s Executive Chef Ricky Moreno. 

The evening includes hors d’oeuvres, Brass Cap cocktail, a copy of the book, and four-course dinner with wine. Some menu highlights: Heirloom Tomato, Cucumber and Bread Salad; Farmers’ Market Risotto; and Pork Stew with Seasonal Beans and Greens. 

A longtime advocate of slow food, organic produce, local farmers and farmers markets, Amelia Saltsman’s recipes reflect her love and admiration for the people who grow our food — the farmers.  Joining us at this special event, will be some of the farmers whose produce will be showcased on the menu.  Cost is $98.

“When So Cal Went Ag: Past and Present Stories of Farming and Farmers’ Markets in Southern California”
Panel Discussion & Book Signing
Saturday, October 13, 2007
10:30 a.m.
Los Angeles Central Public Library
630 W. 5th St.
Los Angeles, CA
(213) 228-7201

Back in the day when southern California was prime agricultural land and The Los Angeles Times printed crop reports, Angelenos had local access to a wide array of fresh produce. We lost our way for awhile, but now there is renewed passion for crop diversity and connecting to the source, most often, for us city dwellers, by purchasing directly from the grower at farmers’ markets. What was available here one hundred and more years ago? What was, and is it like to be a farmer in southern California, and why and how did the current and booming certified farmers’ market system develop? Join Amelia Saltsman, author of The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Cookbook; Molly Iwamoto Gean, third generation-California farmer and co-owner of Harry’s Berries farm in Oxnard; and Laura Avery, Market Supervisor of the Santa Monica Farmers’ Markets for a lively presentation followed by a reception and book signing including tastes from Molly’s farm and Amelia’s book.

Laura Avery, Market Supervisor of the Santa Monica Farmers’ Markets, has overseen the growth of the city’s market program since she began as the downtown market manager in 1982. She also serves as president of the Southland Farmers’ Market Association Board.

Molly Iwamoto Gean is a third generation-California farmer who comes from a long line of farmers in southern Japan. She is co-owner of Harry’s Berries farm in Oxnard, which sells exclusively at southern California farmers’ markets, and is president of the Santa Barbara Certified Farmers’ Market Association.

Amelia Saltsman is the author of The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Cookbook: Seasonal Foods, Simple Recipes, and Stories from the Market and Farm, and editor of The Food Journal, the newsletter of the Culinary Historians of Southern California. Amelia serves on the California Certified Farmers’ Market Advisory Committee.

The Culinary Historians of Southern California is a not-for-profit organization that supports the culinary collections at the Los Angeles Public Library. For more information on the Culinary Historians of Southern California go to

Saturday, October 20, 2007
11:00 a.m. to 1 p.m.
1201 Third Street Promenade
Santa Monica, CA
(310) 260-9110

Cooking Demo & Book Signing
Thursday, October 25, 2007
7:00 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Santa Monica Public Library
601 Santa Monica Blvd
Santa Monica, CA
(310) 458-8600

From easy table decorations to simple festive dishes, the Santa Monica Farmers’ Market offers all makings.  Amelia Saltsman demonstrates sustainable decorating ideas and delicious food from her book, The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Cookbook: Seasonal Foods, Simple Recipes, and Stories from the Market and Farm.  A book signing will follow the demo and tasting.


Cooking Demo & Book Signing
Saturday, October 27, 2007
9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
4th & Guadalupe
Austin, TX
(512) 236-0074

Harvest Dinner and Book Signing with Boggy Creek Farm
Monday, October 29, 2007   
7:00 p.m.
2905 San Gabriel St.
Austin, TX
For reservations: (512) 474-2905

All photographs in this post ©2007 Hill Street Studios.


  1. says

    I think you just took care of my entire Christmas list. What a wonderful book. And to think everybody almost got Nueske’s bacon samplers.

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