On Saturday, Dexter worked the farmers’ market with our roommate Luke. I showed up halfway through and dutifully delivered the apple cider doughnuts. And let me tell you, delivering doughnuts to hot coffee stand on a drizzly Saturday morning is no punishment.
In two strolls around the market, we picked up everything we needed: a pound of rhubarb, a bag of spinach, a carton of eggs, and a stewing chicken, all from Salt Fork Farms.
We had resigned ourselves to not joining a CSA this summer. The couple we had split our CSA share with in the past decided not to join, and our old CSA had concocted a really inconvenient delivery plan. I also felt bad for wasting much of what we took home in our share each week. We were elated when we ran across Salt Fork Farms, which specializes in pasture-raised poultry and eggs as well as fresh produce. Since I am on the fence about continuing to be vegetarian, I was excited to see a local option that seems to raise chickens in the best possible way. We also loved the punch card based format of the CSA. Instead of getting a like-it-or-not box of veggies each week, we got punch cards that act like cash at the Salt Fork Farms farmers’ market stand. Each week at the farmers’ market, we buy whatever we want from our CSA and get a 10% discount off the market price. It’s the perfect arrangement for us because we can stock up on the things we love, and if we miss a week, we’re not giving up the food we paid for.
After perusing to my heart’s content, I camped out with Dexter at the coffee stand. I was intrigued by the stand next to ours which sold tiny herb plants, homemade soaps and lip balms, and herb-infused vinegar and olive oil. I had my eye on a bottle of balsamic vinegar for my new homemade salad dressing habit. The girl running the stand, Jocelyn, was so sweet and helpful. She coached me through choosing a basil plant for Dexter’s desk that would hopefully produce lots of usable leaves despite my black thumb. She also recommended a salad dressing recipe for my new vinegar: one part vinegar, two parts olive oil, a little bit of honey. It’s simple, but it was a hit with all three boys at the dinner table last night!
I got to chat with Jocelyn during the slow moments of the market, although her stand attracted crowds! She told me that she grows all the herbs and makes all the products herself. You can check out her company’s website, www.picklecreekherbal.com. I got to watch her stand for a few minutes and “play vendor” while she was gone. I talked up her product and even sold three items. I thought this shy girl did pretty well! (Like seriously, I talked to strangers in real life. On purpose.)
We haven’t potted the basil for Dexter’s desk yet, but I’ve been keeping a watchful eye on it.
My plans for this week’s market finds:
- Rhubarb – I think rhubarb is turning into a bit of an obsession. Last week it was rhubarb crisp. This week it is rhubarb muffins and rhubarb upside down cake. Stay tuned tomorrow for a top ten list of delicious (or at least interesting) sounding list of rhubarb recipes.
- Spinach – We may use this to supplement some store bought mixed greens for lettuce salad. However, it will more likely make its way into a few green smoothies. Dana has some great green smoothie recipes here.
- Stewing hen – This will sit in my freezer until I have the guts to cook it. I plan to cook it with veggies to make broth and to cook the meat for use in other things. (Stewing hens–which are originally used for laying–are best eaten in something since the meat is a little tougher.) Then I’ll use the bones and more veggies for another batch of stock.
- Eggs from pastured hens – Oh heavens. These are delicious. I’ve had them poached and fried. Dexter has had them scrambled. We’ve eaten them with toast or with veggie hash. They’re full of flavor, healthier than standard eggs, and I don’t have to block out what I know about chicken farming while I eat them!
To share what you found at the market, in your CSA box, or in the seasonal section of the grocery store:
- Tell us what you found in the comments.
- OR write a post (link back to me!) and post your link in the comments.
- Feel free to snatch my button with the following code: <a title=”marketmonday by kjacobs729, on Flickr” href=”https://mrsdexter.wordpress.com/category/market-monday/”><img src=”http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5308/5748976749_a03567b98d_m.jpg” alt=”marketmonday” width=”150″ height=”150″ /></a>