Farmers' Market at Forest Park

A Weekly Newsletter from Belle Rita Novak, Market Manager

Market Newsletter ~ September 20, 2016

September 20th, 2016 Posted in Newsletters

From the Market Manager

Congratulations to Smyth’s Trinity Farm. They have been named the Connecticut Dairy Farm of the Year by the New England Green Pastures Program.

Each year, a van of judges travels the state touring outstanding dairy farms recommended for the award according to a news release from UCONN Extension System in Brooklyn (CT). The judges are past winners of the award which is sponsored by the Extension System as well as members of the dairy industry. Trinity Farm has progressed over the years as a farm that markets 100% of its milk directly to consumers, either by home delivery, the retail store on the farm, or farmers’ markets in Ellington and New Haven, CT and here in Springfield.

Mike and Dale Smyth and their family handle the three layers of management of the farm—herdsmanship, dairy processing, and product marketing. They work long hours (some start at 4AM) and the need for multiple areas of expertise.

Fluid milk, butter, yogurt, kefir, and cheese curds are processed at the farm plant built in 1995, which Mike manages; Dale handles the farmers’ markets.

A recently built bedded pack barn provides comfort for the herd between time on the pasture and time for milking in the older barn. The pack barn was built with assistance from a USDA contract to keep the exercise area covered as a win-win for the environment and the animals, the UCONN release says.

Siblings Sam Smyth and Anne Dugas have co-owned the farm since taking over from their parents in 2010 though their parents are still very much involved in the day to day operation of the farm.

We’re honored said Anne. “We love this industry. It’s something we grew up in, and we’ve learned many things from different people along the way.”

The award was received on September 16th at the Big E.

We are so glad that they are part of our market family.

This ‘n’ That

We have 6 more weeks of the market including this week. Our last day is October 25th. If you have WIC or Elder market coupons, you must use them at our market by that date; they expire at the end of October. If there is another market before the 31st that takes the coupons, you can use them there.

Wooden coins are sold at our market if you use a credit, debit, or EBT card. We have been doing this since 2008. If you swipe your debit or credit card for more than $25, we charge $1 to help us pay for the terminal that costs us about $1,000 a year.

The bonus program that CISA has implemented this year for SNAP/EBT customers has been a huge success. We have many more EBT customers this year. If an EBT card is swiped for $10 or more, the customer gets a $10 bonus. So far this season over $5,000 in EBT bonuses have been given out. That’s 5K that has been spent at our market that wouldn’t have been spent otherwise. Although a customer can only get the bonus once each week, they can get it each week, so that certainly expands their buying power.

SNAP benefits aren’t generous at all, so anything that can expand buying power is good.

Winter Market

Although we are almost 2 months from the start of our winter market, it isn’t too soon to start talking about it. Our first date is November 12th. It is on a Saturday, twice a month. Usually we are there on the second and third Saturdays of each month, November through April, but due to Thanksgiving, we will be there on the second and third Saturdays of November. Also, we will only have one date in April, as the 4th Saturday in April is only 3 days before we open our Tuesday market.

The market is held in the old monkey house which is the second building on your left when you come in the Trafton Road entrance.

Many of our Tuesday market vendors are there plus we always have some others as well.

Uncommon Vegetables—Fennel

The aroma of fennel is sweet and green and anise like. The flavor of fennel is similar to anise, though more full and earthy, sweet and herbaceous. The fruits (commonly called seeds) of fennel are traditional in Italian sweet sausage. Northern Italians often add the seeds to their tomato sauce, and it is used in biscotti and other baked goods. The aromatic blue-green foliage and crisp stems, particularly the bulblike leaf base, are also sliced and used in a variety of dishes, especially seafood preparations, salads, and vegetables. It is also good roasted. You will often find fennel seeds with a candy coating at Indian restaurants as a sweet ending to a meal. The classic method for its cookery (like celery) is braising. That is, cooking the slices, covered, on top of the stove or in the oven, with a smallish amount of liquid until the fennel is tender and its surface can be easily pierced with a sharp knife.

POACHED FENNEL AND PARSLEY

2 medium heads fennel (about 1 ¼ pounds)

2 cups chopped fresh parsley

4 T. unsalted butter

1 small onion, finely chopped

½ cup heavy cream 1/8th tsp. ground nutmeg salt and pepper

1. Trim the stems from the fennel and peel the bottoms. Discard any tough outer stems.

Separate the bulb into pieces. Cut the large ones in half lengthwise. Chop the fronds (leafy green tops) and reserve.

2. Place the fennel pieces with the parsley in a medium saucepan. Cover with water; heat to boiling and boil until tender about 8-10 minutes. Drain thoroughly.

3. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-low heat; add the onion, cook 5 minutes. Add the cream; cook until fairly thick, about 5 minutes. Toss in the fennel and parsley. Cook until warmed through. Add the nutmeg, and salt

and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with the chopped fennel fronds. Serves 4.

Quick Pickled Vegetables

SWEET AND SPICY PICKLED RED ONIONS

1 red onion, halved and sliced thin through root end

1 cup red wine vinegar

1/3rd cup sugar

¼ tsp. canning and pickling salt (kosher) 2 jalapeno chilies, stemmed, seeded, and sliced into thin rings

1. Place onion in medium bowl. In small saucepan, bring vinegar, sugar, salt and peppers to simmer over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally until sugar dissolves.

2. Pour vinegar mixture over onion, cover, and let cool to room temperature, about 1 hour.

3. When cool, drain vegetables in colander and serve. Pickled onions can be refrigerated for up to 1 week; onions will turn soft and harsh after 1 week. Garnish a taco, serve alongside grilled sausages or burgers, sprinkle over a green salad.

VIETNAMESE PICKLED DAIKON RADISH AND CARROTS

8 oz. daikon radish, peeled and cut into 2” matchsticks

1 carrot, peeled and cut into 2” matchsticks

¼ cup bottled lime juice

1 ½ tsp. fish sauce

1 ½ tsps. sugar

¼ tsp. kosher salt

1. Combine all ingredients in bowl, cover and let it sit at room temperature for one hour.

2. Drain vegetables in colander and serve. Can be refrigerated for one day. The daikon radish will begin to taste bitter after 1 day.

Serve with Asian dumplings, roll into spring rolls, stir into cold noodle salads, layer onto a sandwich.

Market Newsletter ~ September 13, 2016

September 13th, 2016 Posted in Newsletters

From the Market Manager

There are so many wonderful things going on in our area at this time of year. This coming Saturday and Sunday, from noon to 5, you can go to The Kitchen Garden’s Chili Fest. It is in Sunderland at the Warner Farm, 23 South Main Street. You can also go through Mike’s Maze which is at Warner Farm. The cost for the chili fest is $5 children/$10 adults.

Coming up the next week is CISA’s Taste the View on the evening of the 23rd at Quonquont Farm. It is a catered affair with food and drink, plus a silent and live auction. If you are interested, you MUST contact CISA now at buylocalfood.org as they usually sell out.
On the 24th and 25th, the 18th annual North Quabbin Garlic and Arts Festival will be held in Orange at 60 Chestnut Hill Road. You can get all the details if you go to their website—garlicandarts.org.

This ‘n’ That

A friend was mentioning that she really likes potato salad, but never buys it because she would eat it all. I told her to just take 2 potatoes and make it from them. She’d probably have enough for 2 servings, and she wouldn’t be tempted by a big container. If you do make any salad like that, mix the dressing together and then add it to the potatoes, or pasta or whatever. You won’t make everything mushy.

Once in a while someone will tell me that they (usually a woman) doesn’t make something because her husband doesn’t like it. I always tell her to make some for herself. So what if he doesn’t like it. Why should any of us not have something we like?

Bring cookbooks that you no longer use to our market. The blue bin needs more books.

Make fresh breadcrumbs, and store them in the freezer. If you don’t, they will get moldy. If you use the plastic bag that the bread comes in, you’ll know at a glance what’s in the bag.

Take your tag sale signs down when the sale is over.

Take a plastic bag with you when you go for a walk and pick up litter. Every little bit helps.

Meet the Vendors—Bear Meadow Farm

Bear Meadow Farm in Ashfield grows apples, makes hard cider, and keeps bees. It has a growing apiary business that can provide pollination services to growers who do not have their own bees. They produce honey, pollen, and manage apiaries in Franklin, Hampshire, and Berkshire counties. Their farm cidery produces New England style hard cider aged in whiskey barrels. They use a minimalist approach to apple orcharding as slightly stressed trees lead to a more flavorful cider. Their cider is from a blend of orchard-grown and wild apples, and is released each June during the middle of the honey production season. They bottle a dry and semi-dry cider that has been sweetened with honey.
They sell at area farmers’ markets, restaurants and fine retailers. It is run by Rick and Nancy Intres and was founded in 2005. Their cider makes a great gift.

Baked Herbed Tomatoes

2 large tomatoes, halved horizontally
½ cup finely chopped onions
½ tsp. (or more) chopped garlic
½ cup finely chopped fresh basil
½ tsp chopped fresh thyme
½ cup coarse bread crumbs (panko is good)
1 T. olive oil
Salt and pepper
1. Arrange the tomato halves, cut side down, on paper towels and leave to drain for about 1 hour.
2. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
3. Combine the remaining ingredients in a small bowl. Place the tomatoes, cut side up in a baking dish and fill each half with the bread crumb mixture.
4. Bake until the bread crumbs are golden on top, but still hold their shape, not more than 10 minutes. Serve right away, or at room temp.

Apple Season is Here!

Go apple picking. There are many places that offer pick your own apples. Go to buylocalfood.org for local Massachusetts orchards. Connecticut also has some of course.

A friend’s mother used to put the amount of blueberries in a freezer bag that she needed for a pie. You can do the same thing with apples. Or, make a pie, and freeze it unbaked.

Make applesauce; it couldn’t be easier. You can can it or freeze it; freezing is easier. Just don’t fill the container up too much or it will crack the container. Wash and cut up apples, no need to peel or core. Put in a pot with a tiny bit of water on the bottom to keep them from scorching; cook until mushy. Use a food mill to puree the apples. Add cinnamon and a little bit of sugar. You’re done. SO much better than commercial applesauce.

Apple Walnut Crisp

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 1/8 cups old-fashioned oats
1 1/8 cups packed light brown sugar
1 ½ cups walnuts, toasted cooled and finely chopped
1 ½ tsps. cinnamon
¾ tsps. salt
1 ½ sticks unsalted butter cut into 1/2” cubes and softened
4 ½ # sweet-tart apples
3 T. fresh lemon juice
4 ½ T. granulated sugar
2T all-purpose flour
1. Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 375. Butter a 13×9” glass or ceramic baking dish (3-3 ½ quarts).
2. 2. Stir together flour, oats, brown sugar, walnuts, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl, then blend in butter with your finger tips until mixture forms small clumps.
3. Peel and core apples and cut into ¼” thick wedges, then toss with lemon juice, granulated sugar, and flour in a large bowl.
4. Transfer to baking dish, spreading evenly.
5. Crumble oat topping over apple mixture and bake until topping is golden and apples are tender, about 45 minutes.
6. Makes 8 servings. Serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Potato, Carrot and Zucchini Kugel

5 large eggs
3 medium onions, peeled, cut into 1” pieces divided
14 green onions, coarsely chopped, divided
40 oz. russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1” cubes, divided
2 medium carrots, peeled, cut into 1” pieces, divided
1 large zucchini, trimmed, cut into 1” pieces, divided
½ cup unsalted matzo meal or regular bread crumbs
2 ½ tsp. salt, ½ tsp. black pepper, 8 tsps. vegetable oil
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2. Combine 3 eggs, half of onions, and half of green onions in a food processor. Blend until mixture is almost smooth and fluffy. Add half of other vegetables. Blend until vegetables are finely chopped.
3. Transfer mixture to a large bowl.
4. Repeat with remaining eggs, onions, etc.
5. Add to mixture in bowl.
6. Whisk in matzo meal or bread crumbs, salt, pepper and half of oil.
7. Brush remaining oil over bottom and sides of pan. Put pan in oven until very hot then pour the mixture into it. Bake until top is brown and crisp, about 1 hour. Serve hot

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Market Newsletter ~ September 6, 2016

September 6th, 2016 Posted in Newsletters

From the Market Manager

This coming Thursday, September 8th, is election day for some offices—sheriff, governor’s council, state representative and a few more. It’s on Thursday because the powers that be thought that having it the day after Labor Day would make for a terrible turnout. We have terrible turnouts for most elections around here. I don’t understand it because, to me, it is a privilege to be able to vote. I know it’s not exciting, but being a good citizen isn’t exciting. Please vote. You can register to vote by taking one of the forms that we have at our market table. Not for this week’s election, but for November. All you have to do is mail it in. The League of Women voters campaigned for many years to get the Motor Voter bill enacted. Remember, if you have moved since you last voted, you have to fill out one of these forms prior to the next election so that you will know where to vote.

Ethnic Stores

We are fortunate to live in an area where we have many ethnic stores. You will find a variety of items that you may not find in a regular grocery store, and much of what you find is less expensive. In the South End we have 3 Italian grocery stores where you can also get something to eat while there. They all offer much more than just grinders. Milano’s and Mom and Rico’s are on Main Street; Frigo’s is on William Street. Spices of Asia is on Elm Street in West Springfield near the library. They have fresh, frozen, and dry items to satisfy your palate for East Asian food.
Middle Eastern stores have sprung up in recent years. The Cedars is at Armory Circle in Springfield across the street from the Boland School. They have everything you could want including prepared food and sandwiches made to order.
The Elsafi Supermarket is at 532 Main Street in West Springfield, also Middle Eastern. Not far from there, at 573 Union Street in W.S., is the Victory Market; an Eastern European market. They have a huge inventory including some food to take out and a large delicatessen.
We have several Asian markets including the Saigon Market on Belmont Avenue in Springfield, as well as the FoodZone market which has a large Asian section also on Belmont Avenue. Then there is the Asian market on Pomona Street off Sumner Ave., and a small Asian market in the South End.
Although I’m not familiar with them, I know that there are Polish and Portuguese markets in our area.

A Poem—Eating Cantaloupe by Midge Farmer-from If I had my life to live over, I would pick more daisies

I scrape the seeds from a halved cantaloupe

pare off the thick

veined rind, cut and hold

a wet, orange slice.

I eat standing over the sink.

Juice runs across the back

of my hand, drips from my wrist

forearm and chin

even though I quickly suck

and lap as I bite off

each chunk.

The brash color, variegated

texture and gush of juice

from the fruit give me purpose

for this day.

I am the fruit

seeds gone, wrinkly shell

peeled off to reveal

soft flesh covering muscle

electric-bright mind

and life-juice still rampant

still far from being sucked

away.

This ‘n’ That

You only need to use one half of a dryer softening sheet each time you have a load of clothes in the dryer; they will come out fine.
We now have t-shirts in all sizes, so if you’ve been waiting for a M-L or XL, we have them.
Start collecting non-perishable items to give as holiday gifts. You can make some lovely gift baskets with some of what is at our market.
Did you know that you can get former Tanglewood concerts online by going to WCRB?
This is the 19th year of our market.
You can make a fabulous vegetable soup this time of year.
Native melons are picked ripe. Don’t leave them on the counter to get soft; you’ll end up with a mushy melon.
Bring cookbooks that you don’t use anymore to our market and put them in the blue bin. Someone will take them.

Recipe—Onion Marmalade

From Greene on Greens

This is good on unbuttered vegetables or a baked potato, or a hamburger. And, it stores well, up to six months in a sterilized jar in the fridge.

1 stick unsalted butter
2# yellow or white onions, half, sliced ½” thick
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. ground black pepper
2/3 cup sugar
2 T. dry sherry or white wine
2 T. red wine vinegar
1 cup red wine
¼ cup honey
½ cup chopped pitted prunes
1. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat until bubbly. Stir in the onion slices, tossing well to coat them with the butter. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper; reduce the heat to low. Cook covered 30 minutes.
2. Remove the cover from the skillet, add the remaining ingredients, and cook, uncovered, over medium heat until very dark in color and thickened, about 2 hours. Take care, as the marmalade will burn easily toward the end of the cooking time. Reduce the heat if it is cooking too fast.

Cool and store, tightly covered, in the refrigerator. Makes about 2 pints.

Corn Pudding

¼ cup sugar
3 T. all-purpose flour
2 tsps. baking powder
1 ½ tsps.. salt
6 large eggs
2 cups heavy cream or half and half
½ cup butter, melted
6 cups fresh corn kernels (about 12 ears) or 6 cups frozen whole kernel corn, or 6 cups canned white shoepeg corn, drained
1. Combine sugar, flour, baking powder and salt.
2. Whisk together eggs, cream, and butter.
3. Gradually add sugar mixture whisking until smooth; stir in corn.
4. Pour into a lightly greased oblong baking dish.
5. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes or until golden brown and set.
6. Let stand 5 minutes before serving

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Market Newsletter ~ August 30, 2016

August 30th, 2016 Posted in Newsletters

From the Market Manager 

Don’t you just love shopping at the market this time of year? The hard part is deciding what to buy because this time of the year there is so much to choose from. If you can or freeze some of the bounty, you can enjoy the summer later on.
I always make roasted tomato sauce, applesauce, jam, bread and butter pickles, and sometimes salsa. I freeze blueberries, rhubarb, and peaches which, alas, I can’t do this year due to there being no local ones. I like being able to make something with native fruit during the winter.
Although my family is all grown up, one of my sons lives nearby, and I have friends that I share with. I don’t have a lot of money to give away, so by sharing some of what I make, it makes me feel good.
If you make jam, look for some unusual combinations to make. I made raspberry/peach jam one year that I called peach melba. Then I have made peach cantaloupe with a cinnamon stick that is nice and chunky. I freeze all of the jam that I make, so it lasts a long time.
If you have a special recipe, share it with your family. So often we hear that so and so made a wonderful something, but no-one got the recipe from them prior to their death. Or, make notes in your favorite cookbooks so that when your family is going through your stuff, they will know which recipes you liked.
If you’ve never tried fried green tomatoes, do so. They aren’t sour or bitter at all. Slice, dust with seasoned flour, dip in egg then dip in corn meal. Fry in a frying pan with some oil. Just sprinkle them with salt. Delicious.

This ‘n’ That

If you live in Springfield, you can call 311 for bulk pickup, or to report a code violation, or to be connected to any city department. It’s available in English and Spanish.
Please take your tag sale signs down when the sale is over. Also, if you can whack those stop smoking, or we buy houses signs down from telephone poles, do so. They are illegal, and they junk up the area.
This is going to be the last week that we hand out the X tokens to folks who use their EBT cards as we will have used up the grant money that we received to do that. Those tokens were used to purchase fruits and vegetables only.
Make your own mashed potatoes. Nothing could be easier.

Personal

My daughter Jennifer (I only have one daughter) was diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in May. As it is a genetic condition, (which we didn’t know about) the doctors believe that this is what her dad died from when he was 40.
Her condition has progressed to the point where she needs open heart surgery. It is a very specialized surgery, so she will have it at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio. As of today she doesn’t have a date for the surgery. (We hope it is very soon as she is uncomfortable.) I will be gone from the market for a while. Don’t know when I’m leaving, don’t know when I will return. It all depends on what she needs when we get back to where she lives (D.C.) Fortunately, we have terrific volunteers at our market, and our vendors are very self-sufficient, so you won’t notice a difference except the smart-mouthed manager won’t be at the table to tease you. Also, I have someone who lives in my house so the plants will be watered, garbage taken out, etc. It’s almost like living in a condo; all I have to do is walk out of the house and I won’t have to worry. I will spend my energy being concerned about my daughter.

Cookbooks

Bring cookbooks that you aren’t using anymore and put them in the blue bin at the market table. You are welcome to take some also. We all have cookbooks taking up space on our shelves that we either barely, or never use, so give them away.

UMASS Extension

Thanks to the ladies from UMASS Extension who have come to our market 5 times this season with new ideas about how to use some of the local produce. They also give out lots of recipes and other ideas on how to eat healthfully.

Recipe—Panzanella
6 cups cubed stale bread
6 cups tomatoes cut into chunks
4 large garlic cloves minced
2 T. chopped fresh oregano leaves
½ cup roughly torn fresh basil leaves
2 T. red wine vinegar
½ cup olive oil
salt and pepper
½ cup pitted olives
1. Place the bread in a large salad bowl. Add the tomatoes, garlic, oregano, and basil and toss to mix. Pour in the vinegar and oil and toss again. Season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside at room temperature for 15 minutes so flavors can blend.
2. Toss the olives, if using, toss again, and serve.
3. Note: the bread for panzanella should be country style, with a coarse crumb. Otherwise the salad will be soggy.

Grilled Veggies in a Jar
1. Fill a large jar with an assortment of garden vegetables such as summer squash, onion, any kind of pepper, whole heads of garlic, eggplant,Leave the veggies whole if they are small,or cut in half if large.

Add:
12 sprigs of fresh thyme
12 sprigs of fresh parsley
10 garlic cloves cut in half
1 tsp. black pepper
2 T. balsamic or red wine vinegar or juice of one lemon
¼ cup olive oil.
2. Mix and set aside to marinate at least 30minutes or up to 3 hours
3. Place the veggies around the edges of the grillrack to cook while your meat or fish cooks.

Unusual Produce-Tomatillos

Tomatillos are part of the botanical family that includestomatoes, potatoes, and eggplant. In flavor, however,they differ widely from the other nightshades. The tasteand texture most closely resemble green tomatoes, but with a softer, more glutinous pulp, a bit like okra, and a sharper taste. Like green tomatoes, they are almost never used raw. Instead, they are better suited as a mild thickening addition to Mexican and South American style soups and stews or as the center of an unassertive green tomato salsa. Here’s a salsa recipe using tomatillos.

CONNECTICUT SALSA

20 tomatillos, about 1 ¼ pounds
2/3s to ¾ cup fresh cilantro leaves
4 cloves garlic
¼ cup olive or vegetable oil
2 medium onions, finely chopped
½ teaspoon salt
(If you want it spicy, add red pepper flakes)
1. Bring a medium pot of water to boil. Peel the papery husks off the tomatillos and add them to the water. Simmer until they are soft, about 8-10 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool in the water.
2. Lift the tomatillos out of the cooking liquid and transfer to a food processor. Add the cilantro and garlic and puree as fine as possible. Set aside.
3. Heat the oil in a sauté pan over low heat. Stir in the onions and cook slowly until slightly wilted and no longer sharp tasting, 1-2 minutes.
4. Add the tomatillo mixture and the salt, stir to mix and bring to a boil. Remove from heat right away and transfer to a bowl. Cool, then refrigerate until the flavors soften and blend.

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Market Newsletter ~ August 23, 2016

August 23rd, 2016 Posted in Newsletters

From the Market Manager

The sound of the rain Sunday evening was wonderful. I fell asleep listening to it. I am sure that as nice as it was for me, it was music to our farmers’ ears.
You probably all know that hay is cut when it’s dry, and expected to stay dry so that it can be baled. But, it has to grow first, and without sufficient water, this year is a bad year for hay. That means that dairy and cattle farmers will most likely have to purchase hay which will drive up their costs.
I don’t know how many of us think about why something costs what it does. I remember years ago when the cost of petroleum products started going up, it seemed as if everything cost more. The cost of transporting goods went up. Plastic,  which has petroleum as an “ingredient,” went up, and we all know how much of our lives includes plastic. Many service businesses started adding a trip charge to compensate for the high cost of fuel. And so on, and so on.
Most of us who own vehicles have one or two. Farmers have trucks, tractors, other farm equipment, greenhouses to heat, workers to pay, supplies to buy, etc. All of these costs must be considered when deciding what to sell their products for.
I don’t like paying higher prices any more than anyone does, but I am so grateful that we live in an area wherehave local farms. I don’t begrudge any farmer whatthey have to charge to make a living. I thank them forraising my food.
Thanks Mayor Sarno for coming to our market last week. I have been nagging him for years to stop by as he hadn’tbeen here since our early years. His wife and daughtersare regular customers here, but he is the mayor, so Iwanted him to see how we’ve grown. We are the largestfarmers’ market in this part of the Pioneer Valley.

Gift Certificates

Would you like to give someone a gift from the market?Give them a gift certificate. Just let us know and we’ll print one up for you.We have many non-perishable items here, so you can also put together a lovely gift basket yourself.

Museum Free Fridays

This summer many museums and gardens in Massachusetts are free on Fridays. It ends on August 26th.

August 26th:
Franklin Park Zoo–Boston
Old Sturbridge Village
Freedom Trail Foundation–Boston
Museum of African American History–Boston
Norman Rockwell Museum–Stockbridge
Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum–Lenox
Cape Cod Museum of Natural History

On Sunday October 9, 2016 at 3:00 pm, Springfield’s own Mamie Duncan – Gibbs and Vanessa Ford, along with two-time Tony Award Nominee Vivian Reed, will be bringing their Broadway friends to Springfield Symphony Hall for a spectacular performance. All proceeds will go to sustaining the vital youth and adult programs at the Dunbar Community Center. Tickets start at $10 and are available at the Symphony Hall box office and at symphonyhall.com, and at Broadway
Comes to Springfield EventBrite. Some sponsorship opportunities, starting at $40 are also available. Information can be found on the Broadway Comes to Springfield for Dunbar Facebook page.

August Gardening

• Sow a fall crop of spinach, leaf lettuce, turnips, and kohlrabi.
• Apply organic mulches to vegetable gardens before you go on vacation.
• Check tomato plants daily for tomato hornworms.
• Eat white varieties of onions first since they don’t store as well as yellow onions.
• Sow seeds of basil and parsley in pots for winter use.
• Later summer is the best time to seed a lawn.
• Do NOT store ripe tomatoes in the refrigerator; keep them room temperature.
• Do NOT strip foliage from tomato plants to hasten ripening.
• Immediately harvest tomatoes that are split or cracking.

This ‘n’ That

• Please put your keys in your pocket or purse when you come to the market. It’s too easy to put them down and then walk off and leave them.

• If you lose something here, don’t hesitate to contact us via Facebook in particular, or call the manager; the phone # is on the website.

• Don’t throw cigarette butts on the ground; they don’t disintegrate.

• Libraries loan out e-readers; they are loaded with several books. It’s great for when you travel.

• Bring a new neighbor something home-made to welcome them to your neighborhood.

• Or, bring them something from our market.

• The WIC and elder coupons are only for fruit and vegetables. Same for the X token that you get if you use an EBT card.

• Market tee-shirts have been ordered in sizes medium to extra-large. They should be here soon. They are $10 each, just a tiny bit more than what we pay for them.

Recipe—Summer Spaghetti

1# firm, ripe fresh plum tomatoes
1 medium onion
6 pitted green olives
2 cloves garlic
1/3rd cup chopped fresh parsley
2T. finely shredded fresh basil
2 teaspoons (or more if you wish) capers
½ tsp. paprika
fresh or dried oregano to taste
1 T. red wine vinegar
½ cup olive oil
1 # uncooked spaghetti
1. Chop tomatoes, coarsely. Chop onion and olives. Mince garlic. Combine tomatoes, onion, olives, garlic, parsley, basil, capers, paprika and oregano in medium bowl, toss well. Drizzle vinegar over tomato mixture. Then pour oil over tomato
mixture. Stir until thoroughly mixed. Refrigerate covered at least 6 hours or overnight.
2. Just before serving, cook spaghetti just until al dante, 8-12 minutes. Drain well. Immediately toss hot pasta with cold marinated tomato sauce. Serve at once.

Stuffed Mushrooms 

White or baby bella mushrooms

Celery

Onion

Corn flake crumbs

Garlic

Butter or olive oil

1. Clean mushrooms, remove and save stems.
2. Put celery, onion, garlic cloves, and mushroom stems in food processor; process until finely chopped, but not mushy.
3. Sauté in butter or olive oil until done, maybe 10 minutes.
4. Process corn flakes in processor and add to sautéed vegetable mixture.
5. Add salt and pepper to taste.
6. Fill mushrooms.
7. Drizzle with a little olive oil or butter.
8. Bake at 350 about 15 minutes or so.

Mark Your Calendar

Beethoven’s Wig, Sunday, September 25th, 3PM. $10 adults, $5 children. Beethoven’s Wig is the most honored musical group in family entertainment. The group opens the door to “serious music” in a way that’s fun. This is being held at the Wistariahurst Museum at 238 Cabot Street in Holyoke.

 

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Market Newsletter ~ August 16, 2016

August 16th, 2016 Posted in Newsletters

From the Market Manager 

Last Friday night I had some of my family to dinner. I used lots of local ingredients for it. I love this time of year when I can be creative (or not) and no matter how complicated or simple a recipe may be; it is enhanced by the very fresh delicious ingredients. I made zucchini fritters, gazpacho, caponata, chicken, cole slaw, corn on the cob, and blueberry cake. Everything except the chicken was local, or had local ingredients.
I almost never can anything because I have 2 big freezers, so even my jam and jellies are frozen. Ditto for the roasted tomato sauce I make each year.
Unfortunately, we aren’t going to have peaches due to the extreme cold temperatures that we had in February, so I’ll have to make do with canned this winter.
We are so spoiled in the U.S. that we have produce from all over the world at all times of the year. Once in a while someone will ask me if we have bananas at the market. I always smile and tell them that bananas don’t grow in New England, but, if and when they do, we’ll have them here. They obviously don’t know where things grow. Also, probably because we have strawberries and other produce in the stores all year, some people ask for strawberries in September. The strawberry season is primarily in June. There are ever bearing berries, but those aren’t too common.

Barbara Kingsolver wrote a book several years ago called “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle” which was about her family’s experience eating food from within 100 miles of where they lived in Virginia for one year. They did make some exclusions like coffee and chocolate, but just about everything else was local. It’s an interesting read. Even in Virginia which has a more moderate climate than we have, it was difficult. But, eating as much local food is definitely worth it. First and foremost, it tastes better. Then it lasts longer. Then you know that you are helping the local economy. Win, win, win.

Crimson Lion won’t be at the market for 3 weeks; they are going to be at fairs selling their products.

Recipe—Caponata 

The only substitution that you can make in this is to use green rather than black olives. Otherwise, it needs all of the ingredients. The amounts don’t matter because you can make a little or a lot.
Ingredients: olive oil, eggplant, celery, garlic, onion, tomatoes, red peppers, red wine vinegar, sugar, capers, Greek or Italian olives.
Cut up and sauté eggplant, onions, garlic, celery, and red peppers until onion and peppers are soft.

Add tomatoes, either fresh, or canned (I like diced ones), and cook until the eggplant is soft. Add vinegar, a little bit of sugar, capers (a lot or a little), and the olives.

Taste. If you think it needs more seasoning, go for it. This is good room temperature. Let it sit for a day in the fridge before serving to blend the flavors. Lasts a long time.

Cantaloupe Soup

Ingredients: Cantaloupe, plain yogurt, fresh ginger, honey, pinch of kosher salt, mint or basil for garnish.

Peel and cut up melon, add 1/3 cup plain yogurt, 1 tsp. (or more) honey, ¼ tsp. (or more) ground nutmeg, puree.
Chill for one hour or more.

Roasted Tomato Sauce

Try to use Roma/plum tomatoes for this. Cut tomatoes, put on rimmed baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with kosher salt, bake at 400 degrees until they have collapsed. Puree in food processor or blender. Add fresh basil when pureeing if you want. Freeze.

Meet the Vendors-Bearded Bee

Tom Flebotte is our Bearded Bee. Tom has been keeping bees for about 20+ years. He currently has 30-35 hives spread out over 4 yards. 2 are in Wilbraham and the rest are in Ludlow. Farmers like having bee hives on their farms because they pollinate their crops. Tom is the current president of the Hampden County Beekeepers Association, and he runs 2 booths at the Big E for the club. That is their major fundraiser which helps to pay for the bee school that they run each year to train about 50 new beekeepers.
He owns the house that he grew up in in Ludlow. His family raised sheep. At one time they had a herd of 150 sheep. His parents showed their sheep in all of the local fairs. He and his siblings were active in 4-H. Tom now raises chickens, goats, sheep and cows for his family’s own consumption. He currently has about 100 free-range chickens whose eggs he brings to our market. FYI, the color of an egg shell is determined by the type of chicken that lays the egg.

Concerned Citizens for Springfield

CCS is our sponsor. This organization was established in 1995 primarily by landlords who owned property in the Forest Park neighborhood. They were joined by neighborhood residents who cared about the condition of the neighborhood. Their mission is to enhance the neighborhood through housing restoration and blight remediation. Forest Park is the largest neighborhood in terms of population in Springfield with about 25,000 residents. It has a slight majority of low to moderate income people, and has every type of residence from large apartment buildings to magnificent homes.
Through the years CCS has rehabbed some properties, keeping them from being torn down, torn down distressed properties and built new in their place, landscaped some areas, planted trees, sponsored community fairs, continues to sponsor 2 community gardens, and, of course, this farmers’ market. CCS has sponsored landlord training for new/small scale owners, renovated and donated new playscapes for Johnny Appleseed Park along with the Hampden County Corrections Department and the Springfield Park Department, worked closely with Wynn Development to create affordable housing in the former Longhill Gardens, now Forest Park Apartments, contributed to Sumner Avenue period lighting and gateway signage and much more. They work closely with the City of Springfield’s Office of Housing and Neighborhood Services. It is an all-volunteer organization.

Outlook Farm’s Blueberry Festival

This time of year Outlook Farm usually has a peach festival, but you know there won’t be any peaches, so they are having a blueberry festival instead this coming Sunday, August 21st. From 12-3 PM they are having a barbecue and music. Outlook is located on Rte. 66 in Westhampton. It’s a pretty ride, and they have a lovely store plus a café if you don’t want barbecue.

Gift Certificates

Would you like to give someone a gift from the market? Give them a gift certificate. Just let us know and we’ll print one up for you. We have many non-perishable items here, so you can also put together a lovely gift basket yourself.

Museum Free Fridays

This summer many museums and gardens in Massachusetts are free on Fridays. It ends on August 26th.

August 19th:
The Institute for Contemporary Art/Boston
USS Constitution Museum–Boston
The Discovery Museums–Acton
EcoTarium-Worcester
The Children’s Museum of Greater Fall River
New England Historic Genealogical Society–Boston
Fuller Craft Museum–Brockton
Griffin Photography Museum–Winchester
August 26th:
Franklin Park Zoo–Boston
Old Sturbridge Village
Freedom Trail Foundation–Boston
Museum of African American History–Boston
Norman Rockwell Museum–Stockbridge
Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum–Lenox
Cape Cod Museum of Natural History

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Market Newsletter ~ August 9, 2016

August 9th, 2016 Posted in Newsletters

From the Market Manager

This is National Farmers’ Market Week. When we started our market in 1998, there were 98 farmers’ markets in Massachusetts; now there are over 250. In the U.S. there are more than 7,000 markets. Some say that there are too many. If there are too many markets in any area, the farmers have to work harder to make the same amount of money that they used to earn when there were fewer markets. Just because you want a farmers’ market doesn’t mean you should have one. A few years ago a business owner in Agawam told me he thought they should have a market there. I told him that they have 2 very good farm stands in Agawam (Cecci’s and Calabrese’s) and that they didn’t need a farmers’ market there.
Farmers’ markets are lots of work for the vendors, especially farmers. They start early and end late. I once asked a farmer if when it was going to be hot if they started early and worked ‘til noon. He told me that they worked until the work was finished; no special hours for very hot weather.
Sometimes someone says that farmers’ markets are expensive. Just like the prices anywhere, there are many factors that go into pricing. Here in the Northeast, our large farms are small in comparison to farms in many other parts of the country. Small production farming is more expensive than large production farming. They don’t have economy of scale.
Just as we should all try to purchase as much as we can from local businesses, we should do the same with our food. The money that is earned is very often spent locally; it trickles down to the local economy.
I am grateful that there are many people who want to do the hard work of farming.

Gazpacho

There are hundreds of recipes for this soup. It is Spanish in origin and is considered to be a liquid salad. Here is my recipe. As with any soup, the amounts of any ingredients are always variable.
Ingredients: Tomatoes, sweet peppers, onions, garlic, cucumbers, red wine vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper, hot red pepper flakes if you want it spicy.
Method: Puree some tomatoes to make a base. Rough chop more tomatoes and the remaining vegetables then add the vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper to taste. Don’t use too many onions or too much garlic. It should be served very cold, but the olive oil solidifies a little so it needs to melt before you serve it. It will still be cold when it is served. I use my food processor to puree and chop everything, but a blender works also.

Recipe—Zucchini Basil Muffins

2 large eggs
¾ cup whole milk
2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup sugar
2 tsps. salt
1 T. baking powder
2 cups zucchini, grated, squeezed dry
2 T. finely julienned fresh basil
½ cup Parmesan, Romano, or similar hard grating cheese
Mix all ingredients except cheese together. Sprinkle cheese on top of muffins. Fill each muffin cup about ½ full. Bake about 20-25 minutes in 425-degree oven.
Serve warm.

Another Recipe—Tomato Cheddar Pie

Makes a 9” pie
Make a recipe for a one crust pie crust, chill for at least one hour or overnight.
Ingredients: Filling—about 2 pounds of tomatoes sliced ¼” thick
¾ tsp. kosher salt, divided
all-purpose flour (for surface)
1 cup finely chopped Vidalia or yellow onions
½ T. unsalted butter
1 ½ cups grated sharp cheddar, about 4 oz.)
½ cup mayonnaise
1 tsp. hot sauce
¼ cup coarsely chopped fresh herbs such as basil, oregano, parley and/or thyme
½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Line a rimmed baking sheet with several layers of paper towels. Arrange tomato slices on prepared sheet, sprinkle with ¼ tsp. salt and cover with more paper towels. Let drain at least 30 minutes.
1. Position rack in bottom rung of oven and preheat to 350 degrees. After the pie crust dough has chilled, lightly flour work surface and roll out dough to a 13” round. Roll dough loosely around rolling pin, then release into pie pan. Trim edges to leave 1” overhang and crimp as desired. Freeze dough at least 15 minutes.
2. Line crust with parchment paper or foil and fill bottom with baking beans or weights. Bake crust, rotating halfway through, 20 minutes. (this is called blind baking.) Remove weights, pierce bottom of crust all over with a fork and bake again until very light brown and dry, about 10 minutes more.
3. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion, butter and ¼ tsp. salt and cook stirring occasionally until onion is softened and just starting to brown, 5-8 minutes. Let cool.
4. Combine cheese, mayonnaise, herbs hot sauce, pepper, onion mixture and remaining salt in a medium bowl. Blot tomatoes with fresh paper towels to remove as much remaining moisture as possible. Arrange tomato slices in pie shell
and top with filling; smooth.
5. Bake pie, rotating halfway through until golden brown, 40-45 minutes. Let cool to room temperature before slicing.
Israeli Salad

Tomatoes, cucumbers, flat leaf parsley, purple onion, sweet peppers, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper Cut up vegetables into small but not tiny pieces. Make a vinaigrette with lemon juice and olive oil. Season to taste. Make this the same day you are going to serve it.

Saving Herb Seeds

This is the time of year to start saving seeds as many herbs are going to seed now. The key is to catch the seeds before they start dropping and self-sowing in your garden. As the seeds mature, cover the seeds with paper bags to collect them. Cut the flower head stalk and move them to a well-ventilated garage or shed to continue drying. Store the seeds in glass jars in a cool, dark place and try to use them up within 6 months. After that they lose their potency.

Don’t keep any herbs or spices near your stove; the heat destroys them.

Meet the Vendors—Red Fire Farm

It took a bit of doing to convince Ryan Voiland to join our market several years ago, but he has been very pleased to be part of our market. Ryan is a graduate of Cornell University and has been farming since he was a boy. He has been growing with certified organic practices since he began RFF in 2001. The farm produces a wide variety of vegetables, flowers, fruit and a quality selection of vegetable and bedding plants in the spring.
In addition to selling at farmers’ markets, RFF sells wholesale, has farm stands in Granby and Montague, and offers Community Supported Agriculture shares (CSAs).
Ryan’s wife Sarah was an environmental studies major at Vassar College. She started a CSA farm in Stafford Springs, CT, her home town. Eventually she handed it over to others and began working at RFF in 2007, and after meeting and dating Ryan for a couple of years, they married. They have 2 little boys, Wally and Chester.
Every year RFF has a tomato festival at the end of August. This year’s festival takes place on Saturday, August 27th, from 12-6, rain or shine. Go to their website redfirefarm.com for details. There is a fee.

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Market Newsletter ~ August 2, 2016

August 2nd, 2016 Posted in Newsletters

From the Market Manager
If you go to our website, (address above) you will find an archive of recipes that have been given out through the years. This is the time of year when you should make recipes with fresh corn; there is a difference; it’s sweeter.
Try corn chowder, or corn pudding. I made corn pudding once for a brunch and one of my friends said that she wanted to lick the pan it was so good.
It is also the time of year for gazpacho. There are hundreds of recipes for this cold Spanish soup. I like the one with tomatoes and other  egetables. I will make it for next week’s market. I always hand out samples. I like it with lots of flavor, so I use red wine vinegar. One time when I was handing it out, a mother said when I offered some to her child that he wouldn’t like it. He did; he asked for seconds.
It’s important to offer children a variety of foods. Some they will like, some they won’t, but you’ll never know unless you offer it. I also tell young adults that if there was something they didn’t like when they were young, that they should try it as an adult. Our tastes change, so there’s a good chance you will like something when you’re older.
I went blueberry picking at West Granville Blueberries last week. That is owned by Maple Corner Farm, and the picking was terrific.
It’s 25 miles from Springfield, but it’s a pretty ride. Go out Rte. 57 to Southwick. Continue on Rte. 57 to Granville. After Prospect Mountain camground signs you will see a sign for Maple Corner Farm; that’s North Road; it’s on your right. Eventually you will see the sign. They’re open from 10-5. You can stop at the Summer House for lunch or ice cream.

Community Preservation Act
Voters may have the opportunity this autumn to decide whether Springfield will adopt the Community Preservation Act (CPA). Since 2000, CPA has been adopted by 161 municipalities including Longmeadow, East Longmeadow, Hampden, Wilbraham, West Springfield, Agawam, and Northampton.
CPA would place a surcharge of up to 3% on tax bills. For example, someone paying $2,000 in property taxeswould pay $60 more if there is a 3% surcharge, $20 if a 1% surcharge. The Commonwealth then provides additional funds to participating communities from the CPA Trust Fund which comes from fees from deed and municipal lien recordings and legislation allocation. A study of CPA from 2002-2007 estimates that $3 million from Springfield recording fees went into the Trust Fund to be allocated to participating communities. Local and state CPA funds can only be used for:
• Historic resources—acquire, preserve, rehabilitate/restore
• Open space—acquire, create, preserve
• Recreational land—acquire, create, preserve, rehabilitate/restore
• Community housing—acquire, create, preserve, rehabilitate/restore, support

Funds can’t be used for maintenance, staffing or programming. A minimum of 10% of funds must be annually allocated each for Open space/recreation, Historic Resources, and Community Housing. An ad hoc CPA study committee has been appointed by City Council President Mike Fenton to make recommendations on the levy percentage and whether any exemptions should be included. CPA may exempt the
first $100,000 of residential valuations, the first 100K of commercial/industrial valuations, all commercial/industrial properties, and/or residences owned and occupied by lower income people. The Committee, which includes former Historical Commission members Bob McCarroll and Ralph Slate, is expected to make its recommendation to the City Council soon. The Council will decide by the end of summer whether to place the question on the November 8th ballot. Once adopted, a CPA committee reviews applications to ensure compliance with state requirements and sends recommendations to the Council. The CPA Committee is composed of members from the Historical Commission, Conservation Commission, Park Commission, Housing Authority, Planning Board, and up to 4 other members if the Council allows. CPA allocations need approval by the City Council. Makes sense to me as a Springfield homeowner.

This ‘n’ That
Would you like a sign to put out on Tuesday mornings? We have a couple of extras. All advertising helps.
You can cook corn on the cob in the microwave if you’re only doing a couple at a time. Leave the husk on. They will steam, so be very careful when you remove them from the microwave. The silk comes right off.

Children’s Theatre
New Century Theatre has 3 more performances of “A Year with Frog and Toad” coming up on August 3rd-6th.It’s only $10 per child. Go to newcenturytheatre.com for details.. They are in Northampton.

WIC & Elder Coupons
These are given out at WIC offices and the elder coupons are given out at senior centers. The elder coupons are most likely all gone. If you didn’t get any, contact your local senior center to find out how you can get on a list for next year. There is always a limited supply. These WIC coupons are only for fruits and vegetables.
The elder coupons can also be used to buy honey, but the vendor has to be registered with the state to accept them, and our honey vendor isn’t registered.

Save the Date
The Springfield Preservation Trust will be hosting its annual summer garden fundraiser on Sunday, August 21st at the home of David Hall, 2 Glen Road, in Springfield. The event, which begins at 1PM, is part of the McKnight neighborhood’s celebration of 40 years as an historic district.
The house was built in 1899 in the Colonial Revival Style by Mary McKnight. This charming house is bordered by a dingle on one side, and looks out onto the McKnight neighborhood. It is fitting that the fundraiser is here as Mary McKnight was one of the founders of the neighborhood.
You can reserve a ticket by going to SPT’s website, springfieldpreservation.org, or by mailing a check by August 16th to: Springfield Preservation Trust, 74 Walnut St., Springfield 01105. It’s $35 for SPT members, and $40 for non-members.

Recipe—Cauliflower Soup
You can make this with broccoli also, but it is much smoother with cauliflower.
Butter, olive, or salad oil
Cauliflower (use the white or yellow ones only)
Onions
Chicken or vegetable broth
Half and half, cream, or whole milk
Curry if you like
Salt and pepper
(you can chop up carrots and celery and sauté them with the onion also)
Remove the hard core of the cauliflower and chop the head into smallish pieces. Sauté the onion, celery and carrots together until they’re soft. Add the cauliflower.
Cover with broth. Cook until soft. Puree until smooth, add curry and dairy. This is good hot or cold.

Meet the Vendors—Velma’s Wicked Delicious Kettle corn
Steve Cary, owner of Velma’s West, started working with Eric Bickernicks at our market in 2006. Eventually Eric stayed in the eastern part of the state with his Velma’s setup although the two of them do work together on
occasion.
Steve is a videographer and teacher; Velma’s is a side
job. He will tell you that it is dolphin free, organic, and all
sorts of other claims, only some of which you should
believe. (It is dolphin free.)
Now that his children are older (2 are going off to college this fall) they often staff the booth. The Cary family lives
in the neighborhood. He literally married the girl next
door and they have 3 children.
We allow him to go on vacation occasionally, but he has
to notify his customers well in advance so that they don’t
have Velma’s withdrawal.

Market Newsletter ~ July 26, 2016

July 26th, 2016 Posted in Newsletters

From the Market Manager

We have voter’s registration forms at the market table.If you aren’t registered, please take one and send it in.The League of Women Voters worked for years to get the Motor Voter Act implemented; it is so easy to register. You need to send in a form if you moved since the last election.  remember how excited I was to register. It was the day before the election; It was my birthday. I was 21 which is what the age was in order to vote in those days. Except for one primary election in 1968 when I was in the hospital having a baby, I have voted in every election;
I don’t take the privilege lightly. People all over the world have risked their lives in order to vote. Please don’t throw your vote away.

This week is the halfway point in our market season. I find that I am seldom in a grocery store at this time of year. When I have friends over to dinner, I use as many local items as possible. I had friends over this past Saturday. The menu was simple, with little fussing involved. I made a Caprese salad, zucchini pancakes, corn on the cob, hot dogs, and blueberry cake.

FYI-Maple Corner Farm, located in Granville is open for blueberry picking 10-5 every day. Ask Jess or Lisa for directions. I know that you drive out Rte. 57 past Southwick, and past the center of Granville. After that I just go by what I remember.

Meet the Vendors—White Buffalo Herbs

White Buffalo Herbs is a small, family run herb company located in Warwick, MA that provides the community with quality organic herb medicines, cosmetics,aromatherapy products, kitchen herbs, and plants. Carol Joyce makes each item by hand and raises most of the herbs that she uses on her farm.
Carol is an organic farmer who is also a social worker with years of experience as a criminal justice specialist including addictions counseling.
White Buffalo has a large array of products including body care, bug repellents, kitchen herbs, aromatherapy and more. Carol also sells a very refreshing herbal tea at the market. Go to their website—whitebuffaloherbs.com for a complete listing of what they offer.

Help Needed

Sylvia Staub, a retired therapist, has started another women’s support group for refugees through Jewish Family Service. They would like to expand the service, but need more facilitators. They are trying to identify retired mental health professionals or graduate students who might have an interest in facilitating a group. If you are interested, or can recommend someone, please contact Sylvia at 736-1463 or at sylviastaub@earthlink.net.

This ‘n’ That

If you make your own vegetable soup, save some of the water that you cook corn in, and use it in the vegetable soup. Or, if you are going to make corn chowder, use it in that.

If you have leftover cooked corn, cut it off the cob and sauté it with butter until some of it is browned (caramelized.) Or, put it into your pancake or wafflle batter. Or, add some to corn muffin batter.

If you’ve never made muffins, do so. They are simple to make. Seriously. Pick extra blueberries and freeze them. Put them on a
rimmed cookie sheet in one layer, and when they’re frozen put them in a freezer bag or another container. They are individually frozen, so are easy to use.

It’s so nice to have warm syrup on pancakes.

If you want to make stuffed cabbage, freeze the head of cabbage. The cells of the cabbage are loosened so the leaves are very pliable.

Warm maple syrup in the pan that you cook pancakes in.

Jewish Community Center aka The J 

Some people think that the J is only for Jews; not so. It is open to anyone. The J has programs from infants to senior citizens. They have a pre-school, a comprehensive physical fitness facility including an Olympic size swimming pool, a summer day camp, vacation day camps, a coffee shop, programs for children and adults who have different types of disabilities, and much more.
Check out their website springfieldjcc.org.

Recipes

SOUR CREAMED CORN from Greene on Greens
4 large ears corn
2 T. unsalted butter
3 whole scallions
¼ cup sour cream (you can substitute plain yogurt)
dash of hot pepper sauce
salt and pepper
chopped fresh parsley
1. Cut the corn kernels from the cob, and place them in a bowl. You should have about 2 cups. With the back of the knife, scrape the cobs over the
bowl to extract the juices.
2. Melt the butter in a large heavy skillet over medium-low heat. Add the scallions; cook one minute. Stir in the corn until barely tender, 4-5
minutes. Add the sour cream and hot pepper sauce. Cook until warmed through, don’t boil. Add salt and pepper to taste and sprinkle with
parsley.

THE BEST BLUEBERRY MUFFINS from The New England Inns Cookbook
½ cup butter, softened
1 ¼ cups sugar
2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
2 eggs
½ cup milk
2 ½ cups blueberries
1. Cream butter and sugar together.
Add all other ingredients except blueberries and stir until just mixed.
Fold in blueberries and spoon into paper-lined muffin tins. Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes. Yum!

BERRY BANANA MUFFINS also from New England Inns Cookbook
2 eggs
¼ cup oil
¾ cup milk
1/3 cup honey
1 mashed banana
¾ cup blueberries or raspberries
¾ tsp. salt
2 tsps. baking powder
2 cups flour
¾ cup almonds
Beat together eggs, oil, milk, honey, banana, and berries. Add remaining ingredients just to moisten. Bake in greased or paper-lined muffin cups at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

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Market Newsletter ~ July 19, 2016

July 19th, 2016 Posted in Newsletters

From the Market Manager

Last week, one of our regular customers brought me a gift from a spice company on Cape Cod. This isn’t the first time someone has brought me a gift over the years, and, of course, it is always appreciated. I mention this, not because I expect more gifts by doing so, but because it demonstrates how our market is like a large family in many ways. (without the bickering I might add.) Although Outlook Farm is the only vendor that has been with us since our first market, many of the other ones have been here for several years. I often hear from the vendors how much they like our market, that it is a pleasure to get along so well with the other vendors (we have almost never had a problem with that) and how many customers have become good friends.

I am sure that part of it is due to our size; we aren’t large. Also, we don’t live in a major metropolitan area where you are unlikely to bump into the same people each week. I see lots of hugging at our market with folks meeting up with friends. I sometimes joke that I’m going to charge rent for those that linger in conversation.

To those of you who don’t come to our market regularly, do so. Don’t just come to use WIC or elder coupons, become one of the regulars, become one of the family.

Meet the Vendors—Sweet Pea Cheese

The House of Hayes Dairy Farm is located in North Granby, CT, a stone’s throw from the border of Connecticut and Massachusetts. This 8th generation farm is run by Stanley and Dorothy Hayes, with help from their 3 children—Daniel Hayes, Samantha Hayes, and Ellen Whitlow along with her husband Brian who works on the farm.

Initially the farm only sold their milk wholesale. Nowadays they have a retail operation on the farm where you can go and purchase their products. They have a herd of goats, so they have goats’ milk, and they make chevre (soft goat cheese) in many flavors, Greek style yogurt, and feta. They sell the extra cows’ milk to Cabot, a wholesale operation in West Springfield.

Their herd of cows number about 65, and the Saanen dairy goats number about 70.

Their address is 151 East Street in North Granby, CT. Their store is open every day from 10-7. They have additional products for sale there that they don’t bring to our market.

What does “all Natural Mean?

Not much. According to the USDA definition, it means that no artificial ingredients, or preservatives have been added to the item being sold, and they have been minimally processed.

However, they may contain antibiotics, growth hormones, and other similar chemicals. Regulations are fairly lenient for items labeled “natural.”

How About Organic? What does That Mean?

Simply stated, organic means that organic produce is grown without the use of synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, sewage sludge, genetically modified organisms, or ionizing radiation. Animals that produce meat, eggs, or milk (including poultry) are not given antibiotics, or growth hormones.

In order to use the word organic, a farm must be certified. That is a lengthy process, and makes sense when a farm is a particular size, as it is also expensive.

In lieu of using the word organic which they can’t, a farmer that isn’t certified can use the words “chemical free” or “organic farming practices.”

SNAP Bonus

Those of you who shopped at our market with your SNAP/EBT cards last year, as well as this past winter market, know that you received a bonus when your card was swiped for $5 or more. This year, Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture (CISA) has raised $100,000 so that they can not only increase the bonus to $10, but also make it available in Hampshire and Franklin counties as well. They also expanded their Senior Farm Share program.

Trinity Church’s A Little Night Music

Each July Trinity Church, the beautiful church right next to Forest Park, has several concerts. The music is in the sanctuary, and it is followed by supper outside on the lawn, weather permitting. During supper there is always a carillon concert. The concert starts at 6PM. The music is free, but a $5 contribution is requested for supper. You can bring your own chair for the lawn, or sit at one of the tables that they set up. Everyone is welcome. This week they are serving hamburgers, and they always have side dishes.

Tanglewood

Many of you know what Tanglewood is. For those of you who don’t, it is in Lenox, MA where the Boston Symphony Orchestra has its summer home. In addition, there is a music “camp” where very talented young people can spend their summer learning. They put on concerts throughout the summer.

You can go online to find their schedule. Also, you can listen to the Friday and Saturday night and Sunday afternoon performances either on the radio, or streaming online. WAMC broadcasts all three concerts, and NEPR broadcasts the Sunday one.

This is a seriously fabulous way to spend an afternoon or evening. If you can’t make it up to Lenox, invite a few friends over to listen on your porch or deck. Serve some food, tell them to bring something to read, applaud in all the right places, and then send them on their way with no traffic to contend with. Enjoy!

By the way, children are welcome at Tanglewood. Many people bring a picnic and sit on the lawn for the concert.

This ‘n’ That

If you shop at a place that is littered, call the company and ask them to clean it up. If they don’t clean it up within a reasonable period of time, call Code Enforcement. In Springfield you can just call 311. I truly don’t understand why anyone wouldn’t want to have their place of business look good all the time. Ditto for where you live whether you own or rent. When you’re out, pick up some litter; it all helps.

Try to pick all summer squash when it’s small. They are more tender when small. Use large zucchinis for relish or pickles.

Recipe—Zucchini Pancakes

Easy, but don’t make these until the day you will make them because the salt in the cheese will leach the moisture out of the zucchini and they won’t come together for pancakes. I am going to give you ingredients, how much you use is up to you.

Zucchini shredded, squeeze as much moisture from it as possible.

Eggs

All-purpose flour

Parmesan/Romano cheese, shredded

Butter or oil Pepper

Mix all together and test in a frying pan. If it comes together and you like the taste, you’re done. If it needs more egg or flour to hold it together, add it. Or add more cheese if you want it cheesier. You can use other types of cheese, but I like this combination best.

Cream of Summer Squash Soup

Any kind of summer squash cut up

Butter Onions.

Chicken or vegetable broth.

Curry Salt and pepper

Half and half or cream or whole milk

Saute onions in butter until soft Add cut up squash. Add broth, cook until soft Add curry and salt and pepper. (Use white pepper if you have it.) Puree, and add whatever dairy product you are using. Done. Serve warm. Adjust seasoning if necessary.

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