This is the time of year to live in Florida. The weather is either warm or cool with absolutely no chance of snow, and the farmers markets have all reopened for the season. Two stops at the Sarasota Farmers Market this morning led to our dinner tonight – ceviche. We used shrimp, crab and tilapia marinated in tangerines, lemon and limes mixed with strips of jalapeno pepper and red onion. Normally ceviche calls for cilantro, but to me it tastes like soap, so I never use it in anything. Any combination of seafood and citrus will do for ceviche. Maggie’s Seafood and Brown’s Grove are the two stands to look for. Maggie’s is on the corner of Main Street and Lemon Avenue. Brown’s is at the corner of Lemon and State Street.
But here’s an insider tip on Maggie’s Seafood: if you can swing it, visit her stand at the Phillippi Farmhouse Market on Wednesdays. The market is open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and there’s never a line. Saturday mornings downtown, her line runs around the block and she often sells out.The market has expanded quite a bit since the vendors took over control from the Downtown Partnership two years ago. An extension along State Street was added last year, but now the market stretches further along Lemon Avenue as well. One of my favorite morning treats is pure maple syrup, so I was happy to see this sign and a few others…We also ran into a Lukey look-alike! It was a good day.