From the Market Manager
It’s the time of year when produce is so abundant that you should consider putting some of it by for the colder months. It really isn’t hard to do at all. Even canning isn’t hard. There are books in the library that will instruct you.
Then, you buy jars that are especially for canning in different sizes.
Freezing some things is also easy. I roast tomatoes with olive oil and kosher salt at 400 degrees until they are collapsed, then I puree them and freeze the puree in plastic containers. 20# of tomatoes make just about 3 quarts of puree. The puree is good by itself depending on what you are making, or the beginnings of sauce.
I also freeze peaches. Blanch ripe peaches in boiling water for a very short time, plunge them in ice water and then when you can handle them, slip the skins off. I put a little sugar in with the peaches because I think that helps them retain their color.
I also freeze lots of blueberries so that I can make blueberry muffins and cakes throughout the year. Just put them in a single layer on a cookie sheet with sides and when they’re frozen, put them into a freezer bag. Use them right from the freezer.
Make jam with local fruit. It’s delicious, but also you will impress your friends and family with it. It makes a great gift. Buy Ball pectin. I like it the best.
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, 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, and no matter how much you get from SNAP. Even if you only get $15 a month, you still get $40 in HIP.
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. Maple Corner
Farm doesn’t take HIP, but they do accept WIC for their blueberries. All of the vendors who sell produce accept WIC and elder coupons.
You should walk around and see who has what and what the prices are before you shop. Each vendor sets their own prices.
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.
Highland Foundation Free Fridays—August 31st
The Highland Foundation sponsors free admission each summer for 10 weeks to many museums, etc. throughout Massachusetts.
Old Sturbridge Village
Norman Rockwell Museum—Stockbridge
Cape Cod Museum of Natural History--Brewster
Chatham Marconi Maritime Center
USS Constitution Museum—Boston
Cape Ann Museum--Gloucester
Griffin Museum of Photography--Winchester
Provincetown Art Association and Museum
The Mary Baker Eddy Library & Mapparium—Boston
We have market t-shirts for sale for $10 each, just $1 more than we pay for them. We have all sizes including some children’s sizes. Come to the market table to get one. When you wear one, you are helping to advertise our market.
Make these just before you are ready to fry them.
INGREDIENTS: zucchini or any summer squash, onions, eggs, grated cheese, flour, pepper.
If you make a small amount, use two eggs and about a half cup of grated cheese and enough flour to hold the batter together along with about 2 smallish zucchinis.
Test fry one. If it falls apart, add a little more flour. You can put some pepper in this mixture, but leave the extra salt out until you’re at the table because the cheese is salty and you have salted the squash earlier.
Shred zucchini then put it in a strainer and sprinkle it with salt until some of the moisture comes out. Then squeeze it in a clean dish towel to get more moisture out. Add cut up onion, grated cheese—Parmesan, Romano, or a combination. Then add eggs and flour.
The reason you don’t want to make the mixture too early is that the salt in the recipe will keep it from coming together as a pancake. I learned that the hard way.
This ‘n’ That
Take down tag sale signs when your sale is over. Take down signs even if they aren’t yours.
After you cut corn kernels from the cob, put the cobs in boiling water and boil for about 10 minutes. Save the water and use in soup.
Start stockpiling gifts for the upcoming holiday season. Goat milk soap, lotions and more from Chevreaux de la Grange, maple products, tie dye items, jams, jellies, and pickled vegetables and relishes from Maple Corner Farm, honey and honey products from Bearded Bee,
sauces of many kinds from Wickedly Wild, hard cider and wine from Outlook Farm, all kinds of things including spice mixes from White Buffalo. We can also provide you with a gift certificate that the recipient can turn in at the market table and get wooden coins for.
Rachel’s Table will not be here this week collecting food to give to needy organizations. They call it “Buy an extra pound day.” We’ve done this for a few years and you all have been extremely generous. We will let you know when they plan to be here. The heat kept them away.
I had no idea that you could make soup with eggplant. This sounds delicious.
3 medium tomatoes, halved
1 ½# eggplants, halved lengthwise
1 onion halved
6 garlic cloves, peeled
2 T. vegetable oil
1 T. fresh thyme, or 1 tsp. dried thyme, chopped
1 cup cream, heavy or otherwise
¾ cup goat cheese, crumbled
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Place tomatoes, eggplant, onion and garlic on large baking sheet. Brush vegetables with oil. Roast until vegetables are tender and brown in spots, about 45 minutes.
3. Remove from oven.
4. Scoop eggplant from skin into heavy large saucepan; discard skin. Add remaining roasted vegetables and thyme to same saucepan.
5. Add 4 cups chicken stock and bring to boil. Reduce heat to simmer. Cook until onion is very tender, about 45 minutes.
6. Cool slightly.
7. Working in batches, puree soup in blender until smooth. Return soup to saucepan.
8. Stir in cream. Bring to simmer, thinning with more stock, if desired.
9. Season soup with salt and pepper. Ladle into bowls.
10. Sprinkle with goat cheese.
You can freeze the soup before you put the cream in, and it’s good without the cream also.
We have a winter market here in the park that is from November into April. Sometimes we go through the month of April, sometimes not. We are usually the second and fourth Saturdays, but in November and December we will be the 2nd and 3rd due to Thanksgiving
and Christmas. It’s in the old monkey house.