Juggling bags full of peaches, Jerry Harkins swings by market to sample local flavors and create new dishes. Harkins, sous chef at Clancy’s, is a regular at our Uptown Tuesday Market. Today, Harkins is picking up summer stone fruits and looking to transform his armload of peaches into homemade dressings and cobblers. We caught up with Harkins in between vendor booths to discuss his own unrelenting love for local New Orleans cuisine. Read on to learn more!
While stationed in Germany, far from the Gulf Coast, Harkins realized just how much he loved (and missed) Louisiana foods. Soon after completing his time in the military, Harkins returned to his home state ready to immerse himself in the New Orleans restaurant scene. “I started out as a dishwasher and gradually worked my way up to my current position with Clancy’s.” Lucky for Harkins, Clancy’s shares his love for local flavors. The restaurant specializes in classic Creole cuisine, best complemented by the restaurant's impressive wine collection. Since the early 1900s, Clancy’s has been firmly committed to providing Uptown residents with the best Louisiana foods available.
For Harkins, working in the restaurant industry has its perks, including weekly trips to his neighborhood farmers market. Harkins’ previous position at a local cafe first introduced him to the Crescent City Farmer’s Market. Since then, Harkins swings by every Tuesday eager to build lasting relationships with the farmers who grow his food. He comes with an open mind, ready to let the market’s seasonal offerings inspire new culinary creations. “Anything fresh and good always finds its way onto my menu.” Harkins particularly loves purchasing local berries and peaches for himself, which, as he notes, he would never dare buy at a grocery store.
So, how does Harkins spread the word about fresh local foods? “It’s all word of mouth--customers often ask about the dishes, wondering where the ingredients all came from. I make sure to let them know that I get everything at the farmers market.”
Crescent City Farmers Market would like to thank Jerry Harkins and Clancy's for keeping their business local and strengthening our Louisiana food economy. Support those who support us by stopping by Clancy’s to taste the season for yourself!