january 7, 2016

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It’s safe to say that many of you have sworn off bread in 2016. Pshaw!
My advice? Eat BETTER bread.

Fortunately we can help you with that at our winter market where, both Bien Cuit & All you Knead are here every single week, unlike the outdoor market where these two beloved bakeries (one from Brooklyn, one from Beacon) have traditionally alternated. Not so at our new winter digs at the First Congregational Church.

This week we focus on Bien Cuit, the Smith St. Bakery in Boerum Hill that keeps getting accolades from food magazines like Saveur, Food & Wine and Bon Appetit. Founder/baker Zachary Golper was nominated for a James Beard award this year for his baking prowess, which involves small-batch mixing and slow fermentation. And the city’s top restaurants continue to vie for his baguettes. Golper’s miche bread which requires a three-day process from mix to bake, is, by now, legendary in Brooklyn (and in Chappaqua, too, where many a miche graced a holiday table this season). But, today, I want to let you know about their stretch pain de mie – which has become a staple at our house.

Pain de mie is the France’s answer to Pullman Bread. The Bien Cuit bakers add eggs to the traditional flour, yeast, milk, salt, sugar, and butter mixture, giving the loaves a golden edge. It’s baked in a lidded Pullman pan so the loaf has clean, sharp corners. The “mie” or belly of the crumb is dense, slightly dry and rich. What I love about it is its versatility: it’s terrific toasted in the morning with some butter and jam or a bit of honey or dark chocolate Nutty Spread. (Having a hard time getting your kids to eat breakfast in the morning? Pop a couple of slices in the toaster and watch the buttery smell lure everyone to the kitchen counter).

Continue reading january 7, 2016

december 17, 2015

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SOUP’S ON, MERINGUE ROYALTY AND A BIG BANG AT THE INDOOR MARKET

Did you know that Steve of Steve’s Country Kitchen is a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu Culinary School in London? And that before he started selling his popular soups at the farmer’s market he’d been cooking for Fortune 500 company directors in the U.K.? Despite the fancy pedigree, Steve’s cooking is straight from the culinary hip: wholesome, honest ingredients prepared with lots of care and a dash of creativity.  He always cooks with the seasons – to wit his  current staple, a smooth, Sweet Potato and Apple Soup – liquid velvet. Also popular this time of year are his French Onion Soup and his hearty Ham and Split Pea. He will be offering all of these at the market this week, so now that the temps are finally seasonally correct, make sure to stock up.

And so it goes for coffee, of which you’ll need plenty in the coming days for late-night wrapping. Enter Big Bang Coffee making their debut at the market this week. Roaster Elina Dart uses only fair-trade organic beans for her coffee which she roasts in small batches at the Hat Factory in Peekskill, just a few steps away from the new Big Bang Coffee Shop.

What timing! This week if you buy one of our cool and cheery CFM Coffee mugs – you get a free cup of coffee (or tea from Teagevity) on us!  Who wouldn’t love to get a bag of locally-roasted coffee beans, or organic loose tea along with a mug for the holidays?

Continue reading december 17, 2015

december 10, 2015

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OUR FIRST WINTER MARKET WILL BE WARM IN MORE WAYS THAN ONE THIS SATURDAY

We are so excited to invite you to our new winter digs at the First Congregational Church. The locale could not be more pleasant, cozy and inviting. We’ve got plenty of space which, of course, means lots of new vendors.

Two of them come to us from GreenMarkets in the city: Breezy Hill Orchard – which will be bringing cider, fresh pasta made with local produce and Hudson Valley whole wheat and buckwheat and crates of Hudson Valley ORGANIC apples. Their award-winning hard cider has won over this girl from Brittany, where hard cider is the drink of choice and drunk in bowls. They will also be bringing baked goods and authentic handmade tamales – though made with vegetable oil instead of lard.

The other, Yellow Bell Farm is bringing fresh local chicken, eggs, and their ever-popular and healthful  bone broth which has created a lot of buzz at the Union Square market. They routinely sell out of this broth – which is sold frozen in pouches – so I’m glad they will be coming every week to Chappaqua. Oh, and don’t forget to try their Bourbon chicken pate. Continue reading december 10, 2015

november 19, 2015

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FAREWELL TRAIN STATION – HELLO FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH

This Saturday is our last outdoor market of the season. Where did the time go?
It seems like just yesterday we were filling our market baskets with radishes and rhubarb and now we are racking up the rutabaga. Thank you, shoppers, for making this such a banner season for our vendors.

There were many highlights this season, obviously President Clinton’s visit to the market was one of them. We had some particularly great music each week, great help from fantastic interns, Nate, Ryan and Rachel – who helped with everything from photography to traffic control to face painting.

Betsy, the Brownie Lady left us for a new life in Colorado, but we were joined by Christiane – our favorite Austrian baker, and her game-changing Linzer Tarts.

Nutty Spread, Larchmont Charcuterie and Steve’s Country Soups – joined us late in the season – but were instant hits and will, of course, enhance our winter market line-up.
Continue reading november 19, 2015

november 12, 2015

NUTTY SPREAD IS BACK, PLUS LARCHMONT CHARCUTERIE AND TWO MORE GUEST VENDORS

If you turned up at the Nutty Spread tent last week only to find a “sold out” sign – you’re in luck. News about their fantastic product spread fast. They are returning this weekend to make things right. If I were you, I’d do what our market staff and volunteers did – buy one of each flavor just to be on the safe side. Great to give as gifts but also great to spread on slice of Bread Alone’s peasant bread for an after-school (or middle of the night) snack.

Speaking of gifts…it’s never too early to get started. Crown Maple Syrup is making it extra easy on you with their gift boxes: For $40, you get one 12oz syrup (choose among Amber, Dark or Bourbon) AND one 10oz bag of their maple sugar which is so fantastic for baking. OR, you can get two 12oz syrup (Amber and/or Dark). Can’t think of a better hostess gift for Thanksgiving – especially if you are an overnight guest and can offer to whip up some pancakes in the morning. (Get this – the Crown Maple folks at the market will ship your gift box anywhere in the U.S. for $50 all told).

Continue reading november 12, 2015

november 5, 2015

 

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NUTELLA – MEET YOUR MATCH!

Nutella. Kids love it. Parents concerned about the high sugar and fat content? Not so much. Enter Nutty, an organic, handcrafted chocolate hazelnut spread made right here in the Hudson Valley. “Nutty” is the brainchild of Joseph Briggs and Kerstin Kup of Valatie, NY. Both are passionate gardeners and homesteaders who love to cook, and especially love to serve (and eat!) fresh, healthy, whole food. Their spread, which is also fair-trade, comes in three flavors: original creamy Milk Chocolate, luscious Dark Chocolate (which is completely dairy-free) and Dark Chocolate Crunch (dairy-free with deep roasted hazelnut bits).

Continue reading november 5, 2015

october 29, 2015

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Pssst…. Here are the recipes for the Winning Pies at our 2nd Annual Pie Contest

What with President Clinton crashing our pie contest a couple of weeks ago and with securing a fantastic location for the winter market (huzzah!) we got a little sidetracked.

Here are the winners of our Second Annual Apple Pie Contest and, as promised, their winning recipes.
Don’t you want to bake a “winning” pie for your Thanksgiving guests?.

In the kids category, top honors went to:

1st place: Hannah Rosenberg
2nd place: Hallie Rackoff & Kaitlin Genda
3rd place: Julia Ziebenberg & Lauren Kassin

Continue reading october 29, 2015

october 22, 2015

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Bonkers for Brussels Sprouts

I read recently that Terrance Brennan was closing his beloved Picholine Restaurant near Lincoln Center. Most New Yorkers associate Brennan with towering cheese carts. I immediately think of Brussels Sprouts. I once had the pleasure of interviewing Brennan at his Westchester home. His sprawling kitchen had been featured in a book about famous chefs’ home kitchens and so that’s where we did the interview. It was mid-afternoon, too late for lunch and too early for dinner. Rare is the chef who doesn’t want to feed a food writer. So, on the fly,  Brennan decided to whip up some Brussels sprouts. It was a risky choice. The world is divided between those who love Brussels Sprouts, and those who, well…run at the sight  of them.

But Brennan knew exactly what he was doing when he spread them out on a cookie sheet, doused them with quality olive oil, peppered them with fancy French sea salt and popped them in a hot, hot oven. The kitchen smelled fantastic, and when the crispy sprouts came out with their charred outer leaves, they were as addictive as French fries.

Continue reading october 22, 2015

october 15, 2015

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Our annual apple pie contest gets serious, a new variety of apple and caramel apples….

If he’s talented enough to cook Sunday supper for the Clintons, then surely, he’s got the palate required to evaluate your Aunt Betsy’s golden apple pie.

That’s right, Oscar Flores, the Clintons’ personal family chef,  will be judging our apple pie contest on Saturday. He will be joined by Michelle Hecht, whose winning apple pie last year made judges swoon. Among them,, Beth Sovern, Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher at Bell Middle School and Helen Harrison, ESL Teacher at Bell, 7 Bridges and Horace Greeley, who are returning to the judges’ table for another round of grueling work.

Remember – your entries must be submitted by 10:30 am on Saturday to qualify.

May the best pie win!

And on the subject of apples, there’s a new apple in town and everyone is talking about its “monster crunch.” Introducing the sweet and snappy Snapdragon apple which you can find in limited supply at the Orchards of Concklin tent. This is not a baking apple, but a crazy delicious apple to be eaten out of hand. Immediately!

Continue reading october 15, 2015

october 8, 2015

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Red Kale, Plum Chutney and lots of tulle at the market this week!

This is the time of year when kale runs rampant at the market. Running Creek Farm has been picking lots of Russian red kale this week. Oddly enough, the stalks and veins of  Russian red kale turn ruby-slipper red in cold weather, but lean green when grown in warmer conditions.

Red kale, which turns red the minute it is cooked, is one of my favorite varieties because although tough to the tooth, it has a sharp, distinct flavor, more pronounced than other varieties. It’s a natural in soups and wilted in risottos.

Continue reading october 8, 2015