On the Way In and Out
Check out Tony Fetters Fruit Farm for more apple varieties and great cider. The secret to my Healthy Homemade Applesauce is using apple cider to sweeten it.
The winter squashes are coming in, and the weather is finally cool enough for one of my favorite soups. Squash Bisque is easy, loved by family members of all ages, and is a great soup to send in a thermos for lunch.
We will have other new recipes at the Smart Markets table this week; in this cooler weather you can enjoy cooking again, hopefully with the kids helping out.
Vendors Absent This Week
Soul Cakes by Tanya will not be with us this week; you will have to wait a week for your sweet potato pie fix.
From the Market Master
I was at several of our markets last week and had some time to look around and watch our shoppers react to the market -- the food, the vendors, the atmosphere, and the special activities we hosted at each of them. I realized that if you have never been to a farmers' market or do not come every week to see what's new, you are missing out on an opportunity to benefit from the experience.
If you want to commit to buying local, our markets offer almost everything you need to cook for your family all week long. If you are just there for produce, BBQ, Trickling Springs Dairy, or low-fat, high-taste Piedmontese beef, spend a little more time and money, and you will come away knowing that someone you have met and talked to about their products will benefit from that sale.
The buck really does stop at a market; it doesn’t fly across the country or out of the country via a middleman. You hand it to the person who grew, raised, or made with their own hands the food you take home. You haven’t just connected to the source of your food -- the farm, dairy, or home kitchen -- you have connected to the people who work to produce it.
You can sample food all through the market, even more so during the winter months. You will discover that all those apples and tomato varieties actually have distinguishable flavors, and all of them are good!
In addition to learning firsthand how good local food can taste, you can also learn what to cook with it and how, as well as why it is so much better for you than food grown far away on huge corporate farms or created in corporate kitchens where in some cases no hand ever touches the product.
We have chef Annie Sidley, who comes to our markets to teach you at no cost how to cook with market ingredients. We have Patty Repko, a certified health coach who will teach you what to eat to stay healthy throughout your life and will answer questions about creating a healthy pantry. You will learn how to stock your kitchen with the ingredients that make up healthy meals and snacks that even the kids can learn to make on their own.
We also bring in guests such as Luanne O’Loughlin, owner of Olio2Go, who samples and sells Italian olive oils and other ingredients that you will need for that healthy pantry. None of this costs you anything but your time. Where else can you get so much, and get to sample as you learn, for nothing but your time?
I will share some additional thoughts in next week’s newsletter. See you at the market!