Pascale’s Blog

december 14, 2017

HeaderLast chance for edible (or drinkable!) gifts from the market!

This Saturday marks the end of yet another successful season for our market. It is the final outdoor market of 2017 and the last opportunity to purchase unique gifts that reflect the local food culture of the Hudson Valley. Whether you need a small gift for the office Secret Santa or an impressive spread for a loved one, the market has something for everyone.

Shopping for a mixologist? Hillrock Estate Distillery will be joining us with their handcrafted whiskey. They are in the heart of the historic Hudson Valley, overlooking the distant Berkshire Mountains, where prime farmland, crystal clear water, and a favorable climate create a unique terroir which is profoundly expressed in Hillrock’s artisanal whiskeys. They are one of the few “field-to-glass” whiskey producers in the world and is the first U.S. distillery since before Prohibition to floor malt and hand craft whiskey on site from estate-grown grain. A bottle of this will be most welcome at any holiday party!

HillrockYou can also pick up small gifts to give alone or as part of a market basket. Think jam from Laurelmaud’s, caramels from La Petite Occasion, coffee from Big Bang, granola from Dragonfly, etc. Bring a basket, peruse the stands and get inspired to create your own medley of market treasures.

Speaking of granola, make sure to pick enough up for any holiday brunches. Serve it alongside yogurt and apple slices or applesauce from Wrights. Better yet, serve it as part of a decadent holiday brunch spread. Flip through the recipes of Gourmet Traveler’s Winter Breakfast collection to create a tablescape full of market flavors like braised greens with poached eggs and French toast topped made with Wave Hill’s Brioche loaf or Bien Cuit’s pain de mie topped with organic jams from Laurel Maud’s Kitchen. You can hit the gym in 2018!

Gifts1Who wouldn’t like to find some salumi in their stocking? For your swine-loving friends Mangalitsa by Mosefund will be here with two festive gift baskets. For $29 you can get three cacciatorini (sweet and spicy) and a small cutting board. For $59 you can get a crate containing both sweet and spicy cacciatorini plus piquillo peppers, olives, Hungarian paprika and local honey.

Gifts2A reminder that we will be at the train station from 9 to 1 pm. After the holiday, we will be holding four winter market “pop-ups” at the First Congregational Church (FCC) at 210 Orchard Ridge Road on the first Saturday of each month (Jan 6; Feb 3; March 3 and April 7), also 9 to 1 pm. The majority of our summer vendors are participating in the pop-ups which will include kids activities and live music.

Do you consider your chocolate chip cookies exceptional? Then you might want to enter our chocolate-chip cookie contest on Jan. 6th. We’ve got some local kids with very discerning palates judging that day. Find details on our FB Page. If you do not know where the FCC is, make sure to pick up a winter market card at the market tent on Saturday. There’s a handy map on the back!
See you at the market!


Pascale Le Draoulec
food writer/ farmer’s market director
author: “American Pie:Slices of Life (and Pie) from America’s Back Roads” (HarperCollins)
914.806.3380

december 7, 2017

HeaderGetting into the Holiday Spirit at the Market

The second of three December markets will take place on Saturday. Not only will we have market staples like winter squash, organic eggs and a variety of apples, we will also have a number of prepared food vendors so you can pick up lunch while you’re out shopping. Megha Indian Cuisine is back with samosas, tikka, lentil soup, chana masala and aloo gobi. If you’re in the mood for something more Mediterranean, Mrs. D’s will have a limited amount of her Greek specialties. Three Little Pigs BBQ is also visiting with their stick-to-your-bones ribs and sides. Perfect for a cold winter day!

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Come to the market for your groceries AND gifts! There are some special items that any foodie would love to add to their pantry or snack drawer. La Petite Occasion is bringing plenty of caramel gift boxes. They make great stocking stuffers or a small Hanukkah gift. They’re also the perfect size to buy in bulk and give out as small tokens of gratitude during the holidays to anyone from the mail carrier to the school secretary. Continue reading december 7, 2017

november 30, 2017

HeaderDid you miss us?

We’re back! After a pause for Thanksgiving, the Chappaqua Farmers Market returns for three appearances in December so that you can enjoy local produce from your favorite vendors well into the holiday season.

Sun Sprout Farm, who is filling in for Deep Roots, has several greenhouses on their 24-acre organic farm, extending their harvest of greens and root vegetables. They’re bringing kale, collards, carrots and lots of squash, all grown in the famous “Black Dirt” of Chester, NY in Orange County.

SunSproutFarmThe farm, in many ways, is a testament of love – the love of the owners Simon Ziegler and Madeleine Banulski that has endured over ten years and across continents, a love of land that spurs a genuine commitment to sustainability, and a love of community that brings people together through food and farming. The seed for Sun Sprout was planted five years ago when Simon, fresh off a return to his native Germany for a degree in organic agriculture and Madeleine, a newly minted nurse, were working on a Massachusetts farm. They knew they wanted their own little piece of dirt to cultivate so they saved and planned and finally found land in upstate New York where they could realize their dream of “making a living by providing people with fresh and organic food.” A lot has happened in five years. They were certified organic, expanded into five markets across Westchester and New York City, and recently added a little Ziegler to the mix. Though you’ll fall in love with them, try not to become too attached, they are only visiting for two weeks! Continue reading november 30, 2017

november 16, 2017

HeaderWhat’s Up Doc?

Every month our Chappaqua Farmer’s Market board meets to discuss market issues – anything from new vendors to market traffic or music, to what kind of market bags we should order. Every single board member is a keen market shopper and, inevitably, someone will bring up an ingredient or item they tried at the market for the first time.

This week it was all about the carrots at Morgiewicz Produce. One board member mentioned how disarmingly delicious they were and before long, we had a quorum declaring these rugged, earthy carrots grown in Black Dirt country, the sweetest most flavorful carrots around. I live for such food epiphanies. I hope you will give Morgiewicz carrots a place of honor at your holiday table next week.

Weren’t planning on cooking carrots? Here are a few carrot recipes from Food & Wine that are definitely worthy of the occasion. I’m particularly fond of making the carrot puree – in addition to smashed potatoes, natch. But I also like the idea of cooking carrots in carrot and orange juice, instead of water, to enhance their innate sweetness, as suggested by Chef Shawn McClain (recipe #4 on the list). 

No doubt, the folks at the Morgiewicz tent will ask if you’d like your carrot tops removed. RESIST. Here are some clever ways to use them – beyond throwing them in your turkey stock post holiday. Cilantro carrot-top chimichurri for roasted carrot tacos? Sign me up!

carrotsA reminder that though this Saturday’s market marks the official end of our regular market season, we have added three markets in December: we will be outside at the train station on Dec. 2, 9 & 16. The hours are 9 to 1 pm. We are closed on Saturday November 25 for the Thanksgiving holiday.
Continue reading november 16, 2017

november 9, 2017

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Our winning chili recipe and must-haves for Thanksgiving

In case you missed last week’s chili cook-off, our winner was Pam Wright. Naturally we asked her for the recipe (see below) and if there was a story behind it. Pam said the Chili Primero recipe is a sentimental favorite for her family. It’s from a cookbook called The Creme de Colorado Cookbook, which was given to her by a close friend who loved every recipe in it and used the cookbook almost exclusively.

ChiliRecipeThe recipe is Pam’s husband’s favorite chili recipe. The combination of flavors, she says, “is slightly more complex than a typical chili recipe and does not rely on heat for its intensity.” As you can see from the long ingredient list, “this isn’t a recipe that fits into a hectic family lifestyle,” says Pam.  “It is definitely a slow cook recipe for a contemplative day.” As soon as she heard of the market chili cook-off, she knew it was time to make it again. Preparing this recipe was bittersweet, she says. “Our dear friend, who loved that book, passed away quite suddenly a couple of years ago. I thought of him often while I made the chili and it gave my husband and me a chance to reminisce about all the fun and food we shared with our friend over many years.” Continue reading november 9, 2017

november 2, 2017

HeaderThrowing down the Chili gauntlet

“Chili concocted outside of Texas is usually a weak, apologetic imitation of the real thing,” President Lyndon Johnson is quoted as saying.
We bet there are CFM shoppers and cooks who beg to differ. Please come out this Saturday – with your warm pot of chili in hand – to prove Johnson wrong.
This is our first chili contest at the Farmer’s Market and we couldn’t be more excited. The Chili Cook-Off will be judged by members of the Chappaqua and Millwood Fire Departments  (bowl of red “experts”).

Please list all ingredients on paper with your name & phone number. Contestants must bring their WARM chili to the market before 10:30am. We prefer if the chili is in a crock pot so that we can keep it warm. 

Judging will begin at 11am!

• We will provide bowls and spoons for tasting.
• We will be selling bowls of contestants’ chili for $2 to shoppers after the judging.
• We’ll provide the toppings!
• Judging will be based on appearance, aroma, taste.
• 
Please put your name on a piece of tape and attach to the bottom of your crock pot.
• 
Bonus points for any chili that contains ingredients from the market.
• 
There will be 3 winners.
• 1st Place winner will get $30 in market bucks and some serious bragging rights.
• 
2nd Place winner will get $20 in market bucks.
• 3rd Place winner will get $10 in market bucks.
• The winners will also receive other goodies from the market.

Continue reading november 2, 2017

october 26, 2018

HeaderThe Other Leafy Green

Overheard at the farmer’s market the other day: “If I have to eat one more kale leaf I think I’ll turn green, curl up and die.”

It’s a sentiment I’ve heard a lot these days. Whether massaged and tossed with a tart  Caesar dressing, or morphed it into child-friendly “chips” kale’s popularity seems to be on the wane. To which I say: Swiss Chard. The other leafy green. It offers all the same nutrients as kale, without any of the righteousness.

Chard is, in fact, a member of the beet family and is known under other names such as silver beet, perpetual spinach, beet spinach, seakale beet, or leaf beet. It originated in the Mediterranean region and not in Switzerland — no matter what its name might imply.

The French call chard “blettes” and they love to tuck it into a “tourte” – sometimes savory and sometimes sweet (chard and apple tourte is dish that goes back several centuries). Here’s one recipe from the Chicago Tribune and another from David Leibovitz.

FYI – Rainbow chard is not a variety of chard. It is simply different colored chard bunched together. And these stems aren’t just pretty faces. Any cook worth her salt knows better than to toss them out. Pickling them is a must. If you think they look pretty at the market, just imagine how they will look pickled, as in this recipe from thekitchn.com alongside their (wilted) leaves on a plate.

Chard is a beautiful addition to any soup or pasta dish but also stands alone as in this Melissa Clark garlicky standby. In addition to painterly mushrooms, Township Valley (back this week!) sells some stellar garlic.

We are so happy to welcome back Bohemian Baked – the popular gluten-free/vegan baker who was here a couple of years ago and had to take some time off from markets. Nancy Haggerty will be back with bagels, soft pretzels, scones, Halloween cookies (ghosts and pumpkins), chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal raisin cookies & brownies, too.

See you at the market!

Pascale Le Draoulec
food writer/ farmer’s market director
author: “American Pie:Slices of Life (and Pie) from America’s Back Roads” (HarperCollins)
914.806.3380

 

 

october 19, 2017

HeaderPick a Pretty Pepper

I’m loving all the peppers at the market these days. So many shapes and sizes and varying shades of sunset, vermilion and plum. Naturally, these fruit (yes, they are fruit) are crying out to be stuffed. Fortunately there are plenty of  pastured meats and sausages at the market that fit the bill. Or, you could go a bit more unconventional. Check out this Melissa Clark recipe from last week’s NYT. Clark trades the traditional pork or veal stuffing with tuna and bulgur plus capers, yogurt, cumin and parsley which all add up to some serious umami.

peppersThis Nigel Slater recipe keeps it disarmingly simple: charred yellow peppers stuffed with sweet cherry tomatoes, feta cheese and black olives. The pretty green plate doesn’t hurt. And here’s a recipe for vegetarians that really showcases the “pepper as baking vessel:” golden eggs baked in peppers packed with ricotta and butternut squash.

See you at the market!


Pascale Le Draoulec
food writer/ farmer’s market director
author: “American Pie:Slices of Life (and Pie) from America’s Back Roads” (HarperCollins)
914.806.3380

october 12, 2017

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Cauliflower, Fennel and Leaf Steeping

So, fall showed up. It’s about time.

Seeing corn AND tomatoes at the market in October was just a little too jarring. Now that temps are in the 60s we can turn our attention away from the grill and bring out the soup pots and roasting pans. How perfect, cauliflower is in full bloom now – purple, orange and snowy-white.  As are licorice-flavored fennel bulbs. Here’s a great recipe that brings them both together in a roasting pan. This recipe for sausage and escarole over toast is just the ticket for a late lunch after a brisk fall hike or bike ride.

veggiesIf you’ve yet to spend time at the Leaf of the East tent this season make sure you do that before it gets too cold. Markham Sindeband has a way with Taiwanese tea leaves and is eager to share his wisdom and hot blends. Continue reading october 12, 2017

october 6, 2017

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Soul Food

It’s been a bruising week for our country. This weekend would be a good time to chill with family, prepare a simple meal and just be together. In fact, my recipe for this week is just that. Doesn’t matter what you make. Just break bread with the people you love.

There will be no shortage of stellar ingredients at the market to work with.
McGrath Cheese is here with their pillowy Victoria cheese and their queso fresco which tastes great on roasted beets (gold and scarlet) filling the fall produce bins.
Blessed Brewery is here for their one a month visit, with their popular kombucha drinks including “fairy tonic.” Calcutta Kitchens is bringing her simmer sauces for an easy heartwarming supper.
Dragonfly Granola has added extra market dates for the fall, including this weekend, so you can sprinkle some granola goodness into your Hawthorne Valley or Shepherd Valley yogurt.
La Petite Occasion is back with her always satisfying salty caramels.
Laurelmaud’s Kitchen always has a new fruit jam or blend up her sleeve.
Mangalitsa will be cooking up brats in addition to selling their charcuterie made from heritage pigs.
If Farm EATS burgers are what you need, NY Chup is here to help you gussy them up.
How perfect: Pennylick Ice Cream is also here. Ice cream and apple pie should round out any family meal this weekend.food Continue reading october 6, 2017