Farmer’s Market Musings
To Market…To Market…
Farmer’s Markets have proven to be a great place to test our products, connect with people, and get our hands on some of the best local and organic produce around, which ultimately inspires new menu ideas. As a food entrepreneur with four children, it has become the ideal place, so much so that when we are not at the market, they anticipate the next one and I understand why. Presently, we are at Germantown on Fridays, at Mt. Airy’s on Tuesdays and just joined Greensgrow on Saturdays. Farmer’s markets are on despite inclement weather and setting up in the rain is more fun than we ever realized.
Phili has been referred to as the national gathering place for local food and there is no doubt we a part of a resurgence of locally grown and prepared foods. In fact, there are at least 4 markets, all within walking distance from our own backyard garden in Germantown. Being a part of the Farmer’s Market motivates us to include more locally grown ingredients in our prepared and specialty products, when they are available. The market is a place where growers, manufacturers, like ourselves, and consumers can meet, experience new local foods, share recipe ideas, ask questions and walk away feeling a sense of connection to the food we eat; this alone being an important part of the cycle of food and the ritual of eating, that we are very much advocates of.
Along with the beautifully grown food, the natural landscape and wildlife of the historical Wyck House, we are exposed to new local foods, like senposai and yellow watermelon that Emma, of the Wyck house grows and shares with the market. A new recipe has been born, since our last meal with senposai, local garlic and onions; it’s tasty, tender and easy to prepare. We feel a sense of belonging here, perhaps because this is the very community we live in, or maybe that folks, vegetarians and non-vegetarians have been so supportive. We have not met too many that have passed on our samples and based on their feedback, now offer individual cakes to meet the demand and it’s working quite well. Follow this link for more insight about Germantown’s Market:
The Mt. Airy’s Farmer’s Market, housed at the Lutheran Theological Seminary is the new hot spot, a child made veggie land, laced with blackberries, sugar plums and grapes. While parents shop for their local goodies, the children gather and delve into their own creative imaginings without the boundaries of play structures and synthetic toys. When chalk drawing is out, the raw materials, like sticks, stones, benches, and branches are the tools of choice. It certainly helps when food and products have to be sampled and sold and relationships are being built. Here Jersey and Weaver’s Way farmers spoil us with the freshest of the fresh and best of what’s in season. Okra is awesome this time of year and we have on more than one occasion grilled it with fresh market corn and tomatoes for dinner. In addition to good local food and music, folks are pleased with our products and customers return with their glass jars for a credit towards their next purchase of our signature coconut-hemp dressing and/or herbal nutri-spice blend. It doesn’t get better than that! Check out us at Mt. Airy Farmer’s Market:
We just got on board at Greensgrow Farmer’s Market, known for urban farming and sustainability, this past Saturday, August 20th. A truly sensory experience, surrounded by great food, the aroma of fresh coffee, roasted peppers and the sweetness of local vegan ice cream, it lived up to our expectations of not knowing what to expect. My children were delighted to show off the chickens, an array of plants, they were curious to know the names of, not to mention a pump operated sink and compostable toilet. Besides being part of a market that is so environmentally conscious, our gourmet coconut-hemp dressing was a hit, we sold out within a couple of hours and folks were also pleased with our vegan baked goods. Check us out at Greensgrow every Saturday www.greensgrow.org
The decision to do Farmer’s Market was driven by the idea of going directly to the people, discovering what works and delivering to them, fresh, wholesome food, prepared with the best intentions. What we didn’t know we would experience, was a market culture we never knew existed. As vendors at the market, we help each other out when it’s needed and often trade what’s left at the end of the day, sell to one another at discount prices or on a really good day we sell out and return home with gifted produce. While going completely local may not be the goal nor an easy feat, Farmer’s markets definitely takes us all one step closer.