Farm Fresh and Local Produce – 9/20/08

Well, I’m a day late with my report, but yesterday was a hectic day. I was working on little to no sleep yesterday morning, so I napped for a couple of hours yesterday afternoon (during the time I’d normally do the writeup) in anticipation of the Slow Food Columbus “Shake the Hand That Feeds You” Locavore Dinner at Flying J Farm (more about that later!).

This weekend was the first time I had to go to the farmers market without Paul, since he’s now working nights. I decided to drag my mother and her boyfriend along with me, after oversleeping by about 45 minutes. Still, I managed to get to the North Market before 8am. It was quite a chilly morning (in the 50s, I think), so I wore long pants and a hoodie for the first time in months.

The tide is definitely turning in regards to what’s available. The name of the game of the moment is stone fruits and apples and pears and and root vegetables and winter squash. And I’m perfectly OK with that, as autumn is one of my favorite times to cook, because of the plethora of veggies that can be used for soup and stew making (are you guys craving soup and stew as much as I am right now?).

I was glad to hear that most of our farmers sustained minimal damage in last week’s windstorm. I was worried about how the storm would affect them, since their livelihood is based on the whim of Mother Nature. Most came through just fine.

I’m still shocked to find berries at the market – like these raspberries from Rhoads Farm. It must be a really good year for berries, because there’s been a steady stream of beautiful berries for months now.

Raspberries from Rhoads Farms

Love love love the colors of eggplant this year. This basket of eggplant from Wayward Seed Farm shows about 5 different shades of purple. I just can’t get enough eggplant this year, for some reason!

Eggplant from Wayward Seed Farm

I got a bunch of root veggies at Persinger Farms, including a bunch of these carrots. Again, simply amazed at the quality of produce this year.

Carrots from Persinger Farms

This pile of habaneros looks like just the recipe to set one’s rear on fire. So pretty, but so unbelievably hot that I won’t even get close to one.

Habanero Peppers

It was off to Worthington by 8:30ish. I missed Worthington last week, and am glad things are back to normal. I bought a portable “shopping cart” to take with me to the market, and am so glad that I did so – it made purchasing a lot of produce possible, whereas I would have in big trouble if I had tried to carry all this stuff by myself while at the same time trying to take pictures. I can’t even remember everything I bought at the market today, since there is so much. I spent $100 in mere minutes. Of course, some of that cost is meat, so it’s understandable…

After hearing so much about the awesome pears everyone got at Wayward Seed Farm last week, I picked up a pound or so for munching on later. I hear that last week’s pears were darn near perfect.

Pears from Wayward Seed Farm

The apple cider from Ochs was so good the last time around that I sprung for a gallon this week. To me, nothing says fall more than apple cider (speaking of which, isn’t today officially the first day of fall?)

It’s almost time to get another centerpiece – to replace the flowery spring/summer ones with a naturally beautiful one made with decorative squash.

Autumn Centerpiece

And what I thought were buckeyes were chestnuts – not a chestnut fan myself, but I wish I were – these looked lovely.

Chesnuts from Gillogly Orchard

So what all did you end up getting? Did those of you that lost electricity this week spend an arm and a leg on produce like I did (and I don’t even have the excuse of losing electric!)? What’s on the menu for this week?

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