From the Market Manager
Someone stole our sandwich board sign that I put at the corner of Dickinson St. and Trafton Road. Why? Who knows. What possible use can it be for them?
This week is our halfway point to the market. We sure have had some lousy weather. I don’t recall a year when we closed early twice. And that was just during the first half of our season.
I went blueberry picking last Thursday at West Granville Blueberries, the patch that Maple Corner Farm owns. The picking is excellent, and the place is lovely.
Directions: Take Rte. 57 into Southwick. Keep going on 57. Several miles from there you will see a sign that says Prospect Mtn. Campgrounds. Take the next right 2+ miles down the road is the berry patch. They are open from 10-5, cash only. On your way to or from, you can stop at Mrs. Murphy’s Donuts, one of the best donut places in New England. You can also get lunch there.
Blueberry season is fairly long (unlike strawberries), but go early enough so that you can have a good crop to pick from.
When we think about it, we all know how hard farm workers work. Most of us would never want to do that work. Recently, the United Farm Workers Union (UFW) signed a breakthrough union contact with D’Arrigo Brothers which produces the Andy Boy label. What is unique about this agreement is both D’Arrigo and the UFW have pledged to reduce conflict and open a new relationship where management and union work collaboratively to help each other more effectively compete. This is especially exciting as this comes at a time when the industry is confronting labor shortages and both sides are frustrated by bickering and inaction over immigration reform by policymakers in the nation’s capital.
More than 1500 UFW members at D’Arrigo, will receive significant hourly and productivity pay hikes which will make them among the highest paid vegetable workers in California. In addition, they have the best family, medical, dental and vision benefits for farm workers in the state—100% of the premium is covered by the company, plus 6 paid holidays a year and other contract improvements.
They are able to gain a competitive advantage by continuing to attract and maintain a better compensated, more experienced and professional workforce with higher morale and productivity. John D’Arrigo said “It is an historic contract because we’re making a huge investment in our workforce showing them how much they matter to us.”
HIP is funded for this fiscal year, so use it if you have SNAP benefits. Make sure you have some money in your EBT account so that the vendor can swipe your card to take money to pay for your HIP produce. Keep about $10 in your account. Remember, the money you spend goes right back into your account, so it’s not as if it’s gone.
You get $40 if you have 1-2 people in your family; $60 if you have 3-5 people in your family, and $80 if you have more than 5 people in your family. You can spend it over the course of the month, or all at once; it’s up to you.
If you check your EBT balance, the HIP money doesn’t show up. Just know that it is there from the first of the month, no matter when you get your benefits.
We have 5 vendors who accept HIP. New England Wild Edibles, Rainbow Harvest Farm, Red Fire Farm,Riverbend Farm, and Urban Artisan Farm. They all have signs saying that they take HIP. Outlook Farm and Phuong’s Asian Vegetables don’t take HIP.
You should walk around and see who has what and what the prices are before you shop.
WIC coupons are NOT HIP coupons. Not everyone who is eligible for WIC qualifies for SNAP benefits. WIC Farmers’ Market Coupons and Elder coupons can be used whenever you like through the end of October.
Both HIP and the WIC and elder coupons are ONLY for produce.
A Little Night Music
Each Thursday evening in July, Trinity United Methodist Church (big church next to Forest Park) has a musical performance and then dinner. The music, at 6PM, is in the church and it is free, and dinner is outside (weather permitting) for a contribution, $5 suggested. Everyone is welcome.
Highland Foundation Free Fridays—July 27th
The Highland Foundation sponsors free admission each
summer for 10 weeks to many museums, etc.
ISABELLA STEWART GARDNER MUSEUM—BOSTON
BOSTON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA AT TANGLEWOOD
COMMONWEALTH SHAKESPEARE COMPANY--BOSTON
JFK HYANNIS MUSEUM
FITCHBURG ART MUSEUM
OLD COLONY HISTORY MUSEUM--TAUNTON
SANDWICH GLASS MUSEUM
MUSEUM OF RUSSIAN ICONS--CLINTON
TANGLEWOOD’S FAMILY FUN FEST IN LENOX
ITALIAN STYLE SUMMER SQUASH SAUTEED WITH TOMATOES AND BASIL
Summer squash is very versatile. You can use any kind in this recipe. Smaller squash is more tender.
3 T olive oil
1 medium to large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic (or more)
7-8 medium tomatoes, peeled and very coarsely
chopped, juices reserved (about 1 ½ pounds)
6 large leaves (or more) of fresh basil, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
2 heaping tablespoons coarsely grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
Extra cheese (optional)
1. Heat oil in large pot. Add the onion and garlic and sauté over medium heat until translucent,about 8 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and their juices and cook over low heat for 15 minutes
2. Add the squash, basil, salt, pepper and cheese and continue cooking until the squash is very tender and the liquid is reduced and saucy,about 30 minutes.
3. Serve right away, accompanied by the extra cheese if using.
KALE PIE One 10” easy tart crust—recipe to follow
4 cups coarsely chopped kale leaves washed & drained,about 8 ounces
1 T olive or other vegetable oil
2 small onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 large eggs
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
½ cup half and half
1. Prepare tart crust and set aside. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add the kale, stir to submerge the leaves, and cook over high heat until wilted and somewhat tender, but still bright green, about 3 minutes. Drain and set aside to drip dry.
3. Heat the oil in a medium sauté pan. Add the onions and garlic and sauté over medium heat, stirring frequently until beginning to turn golden, about 6 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
4. Break the eggs into a large bowl and lightly beat. Add the feta, half and half, kale, onion mixture, and salt if using. Stir to mix and pour into the prebaked crust. Bake until the center of the pie is firm and lightly golden
across the top, about 40-45 minutes.
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 stick butter—8 T.
2-2 ½ T. water
¼ tsp. salt.
Place the flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse several times until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Continue to pulse while adding the water 1 T. at a time until the dough adheres to itself when pinched.
Gather the dough into a ball and set the ball on a sheet of plastic wrap. Cover with another sheet and roll into an 11 x 13” circle.
Remove the top sheet and turn the dough into a 10 to 12” tart or pie pan pushing gently into corners and up the sides. Place in fridge to chill before baking, up to overnight. If chilling overnight remove from fridge 30
minutes before baking. Prick all over with fork, bake at 425 for 12 minutes then prick the bottom again and bake for another 12 minutes or so. If the sides collapse press them up with a fork. Bake ‘til golden. You can put
the filling in the crust right away or wait a couple of hours, but don’t chill it.