As promised in my earlier post there is one book that I find invaluable in helping me turn farmer’s market finds into delicious food on the table. That is Vegetables from Amaranth to Zucchini: The Essential Reference by Elizabeth Schneider. This is a huge book (800+ pages!) that covers every vegetable you are likely to encounter in the United States. Do you know the difference between true (French) shallots and most of what you find in US grocery stores? I didn’t until I read that entry. Alphabetically organized it covers more than 350 vegetables. Each vegetable has its own section which goes over the history, the varieties and what to look for in selecting perfect vegetables. Beautiful color pictures illustrate throughout. Following each entry it gives a bunch of recipes using the vegetable and then finishes each section with chef’s perspectives on using the vegetable. With this book if you see something, you can buy it and take it home and be confident that you will have recipes and a strong starting point to maximize your find.
You can find it here on Amazon. Not cheap but very worthwhile.