Pascale’s Blog

December 15, 2011

Dear Shoppers,

I just came back from walking the dog and was chilled to the bone, when I got an email from Fork & Glass describing the soup they are making for Saturday’s market: “pureed cauliflower with a touch of milk that has been steeped in laurel leaves.” And just like that I was all warm and tingly inside. Not only will our favorite catering couple from Cold Spring be selling their soups to take home, but for the first time, they will be selling their soup to eat on the spot. You can grab a satisfying bowl as an alternative (or addition) to their hearty, but healthy breakfast tacos or chorizo and potato quesadillas – the perfect energy food for this big last-minute holiday shopping weekend.

Of course, you can opt to make shopping super easy on yourself and buy all your gifts at the farmers market:
Amazing Real Live Food Co. will be selling festive $30 gift baskets with three of their most popular cheeses: Moonlight Chaource, Camembert and Stella Vallis Tomme. Why not combine with some of Honey Locust’s quince preserves which would add panache to any cheese tray.

Demetra of Kontoulis Olive Oil  –  is just back from harvesting in Greece – with her seminal oil and balsamic vinegar. As if these nectars weren’t delicious enough on their own, the amphora-shaped bottles are so beautiful they can be reused in a million different ways. I put my dishwashing liquid in one and just looking at it takes all the drudgery out of doing the dishes (well, not quite but…)

Who wouldn’t want a gift box of exotic (yet locally-made) Bombay Emerald Chutneys? Flavors include royal mint, royal pomegranate and royal tomato – and all are 100 % fat-free. The mint chutney is divine on lamb and the others add a touch of class and spice to any poultry dish.

Ready, Set Sharp, the knife-sharpeners are in the house and offering a 20 percent discount off of all sharpening services. What’s more they’re selling gift certificates worth $25 of sharpening for only $20. How’s that for an original stocking stuffer or Hanukah gift?

Our new gluten-free baker By the Way Bakery is also back this week, as is Big Girl Bakery – one of our market’s best-kept secrets!

As luck would have it Stone Barns is back with their quality line of meats and fowl. So many of you have written us to comment on the deliciousness of their chickens. And they’re so reasonably priced!

Mountain Smokehouse – famous for their chipotle-laced bacon is also back for a visit this week.  They will have smoked salmon and smoked trout for only  $6 per package.  All their smoked chicken sausages will be priced at $9/package. Half hams and smoked ham steaks for $5.95/lb (Bone-in) will also be available. And boneless hams will be $6.95/lb for a super holiday deal!

Finally,  we are introducing a new vendor this week: Rochester-based Flour City Pasta which makes about 15 different varieties of pastas each so flavorful that they require nothing more than splash of Demetra’s olive oil. Some of their fettuccini flavors  include pumpkin-chipotle & wild mushroom. They will also feature a few different types of orzo pasta including a sweet cranberry-pistachio orzo, the perfect holiday side dish. I recently tried (and loved!) their Rasta Pasta – a combination of shapes, each one a different flavor: sweet potato shells, carrot-thyme radiatore;  spinach/lime rigatone – cayenne fusilli  all with a hint of cinnamon spicing. Crazy flavorful and festive…

See you at the market….Happy holidays everyone!

Pascale Le Draoulec
food writer/author/farmers market director

December 8, 2011

Dear Shoppers,

Raise your hand if you’ve ever tried veal pastrami!
After 20 years of food writing I’ve never tried it. So I’m very excited that Gaia’s Breath will be selling some, along with their organic greens, at the Chappaqua Farmers Market this week. Gaia’s Breath is our alternate organic meat vendor who will be at the market every second and fourth Saturday, when Stone Barns is not. Their farm “265 acres of pure organic bliss” is situated between the Catskill and Adirondack mountain ranges. When owner Mark Santoro, isn’t farming, he spends his days dreaming up all sorts of charcuterie products. “In the summer we’re too busy to get creative in the kitchen,” says Tara Santoro, Mark’s sister. But in the winter “that’s when Mark gets really creative.” So, in addition to beautiful cuts of organic free-range lamb, pork, veal and chicken you can expects lots of high-end flavorful sausages and charcuterie as the winter progresses.

Or course, Roaming Angus, always has beautiful cuts of grass-fed beef and pork at a great value. This week he’s particularly proud of his thick pork chops.

There will be plenty of fresh fish this week. Roast some monkfish. Make fish tacos with flounder or lemon sole. Bake some hake!

As promised, By the Way Bakery will make her first appearance at the market this Saturday. I know many of you are not yet familiar with her product, but I promise you that once you take a bite of her sour cherry coffee cake you will be hooked. Oh and “by the way” everything that comes out of Helene Godin’s bakery is 100 % gluten-free, though that barely seems relevant it’s all so delicious.

Renee’s Jams is also back this week with her tantalizing (local!) fruit preserves in adorable homespun jars. Grab some for yourself, and then pick up a trio of jams as a gift for someone sweet in your life. Clean Ridge Soap will also be there on Saturday, so you can cross some more names off of your gift list with her natural homemade soaps in lovely gift baskets.

Fork & Glass will be back next week. This week in our live cooking corner,  personal chef Maria Reina will be making a couple of recipes using proteins from our vendors to show you how easy farrm-to-table cooking can be.

The knife sharpeners will be back on Dec. 17th with a 20 percent off sale. They will also be selling gift certificates (which will include the discount) — a great gift for any foodie on your list.

We know there are many markets to choose from in the area, we appreciate you making Chappaqua your weekly habit!

Pascale Le Draoulec
food writer/ author/ farmers market director

November 28, 2011

Chappaqua Farmers Market
The Region’s Largest Year-Round Market – Moves Indoors With Stone Barns!

Chef Dan Barber has become the voice of food sustainability and his restaurants Blue Hill and Blue Hill at Stone Barns are the gold standard of true farm to table cuisine. So, it is with great pleasure that the Chappaqua Farmers Market announces that on the first and third Saturday of every month, Stone Barns will be selling their pristine meats raised in the Pocantico Hills at the Chappaqua Farmers Market indoor location at St. Mary’s Church in downtown Chappaqua beginning December 3rd. Now you can serve your family the same thoughtfully raised meats and poultry Barber is serving at his restaurants. Expect to find: pork roasts & chops, fresh & smoked hams, sausages, ground pork, ground beef and beef frankfurters. They will also have turkey cuts and whole chickens including slow growing “Italian chickens.”  On December 3rd and 17th, they will also have Bourbon Red turkeys to grace your holiday table.

Roaming Angus will continue to sell their grass-fed meat and chickens at the market as will the bio dynamic Gaia’s Breath Farm, which also sells charcuterie, and gourmet sausage and some organic greens.

In other fantastic news, Pura Vida Fish will return in December so customers can continue to buy their weekly fix of uber-fresh local fish that tastes like it jumped out of the net and onto your plate.

Other new vendors include Spice Revolution, a new shop in Dobbs Ferry that sells meat rubs and seasonings for baking and vegetables as well as exotic spices and gourmet salts and chocolates. This season we’re adding By the Way Bakery to our lineup. The New York Times has written about this cute Hastings on Hudson bakery that looks like it should be set in Paris. The baked goods (layer cakes, sour cherry coffee cake, tea breads & muffins) are 100 percent gluten free but customers would NEVER know it — hence the name. The same can be said for the divine creations from Little Croc Bakehouse, which will also be returning for the winter. Hence, we will have not one but two gluten-free bakers who will come on alternating weeks.  

All the favorite Chappaqua Farmers Market favorite vendors from the summer will return, such as Picklelicious, Flour and Sun Bakery (with their ‘out of this world’ cupcake creations), Big Girl Bakery, Taiim (with their gourmet line of Middle-Eastern hummus spreads and salads), Bread Alone Bakery, Tierra Farms (with their line of organic nuts and granola & locally roasted coffee).

Also: Amazing Real Live Food Co. is back for the winter with their fetching line of probiotic cheeses (Chaource, queso blanco and farmers’ cheese). They also carry Ronnybrook milk and drinkable yogurts. Madura Farms will be there, as well, bringing customers a steady supply culinary mushrooms and greens from their greenhouses in Black Dirt Country.

And so will the Pie Lady of Nyack, which will be there EVERY week, as will the Orchards of Concklin with their apple-cider donuts and their panoply of apple varieties.

Chappaqua Farmers Market favorite catering couple, Fork & Glass will make sure customers are greeted with tantalizing smells every Saturday from their Mexican meets Norway “street food.” Get in line for samples! True Foods will have hot breakfast burritos at the ready.

And, on some Saturdays, Ladle of Love will be selling homespun soup from their soup truck.

We hope to see existing…and new customers… every Saturday!

Nancy McNamara of Honey Locust Farmhouse has been busy making preserves from the fruit and berries on her organic farm, famous among New York City chefs who, come springtime, go gaga for her greens. She will have raspberry, blackberry, quince with ginger & mango, grape and/or plum with Pinot Noir and paradise jelly.
She will have Cayuga brand beans and popcorn. And, she will also be bringing her charming cider cart to make sure you stay nice and warm as you shop the market.

In addition to Stone Barns, we will have Hudson Valley Duck with their whole local ducks as well as confit’s duck legs that are ready to roast and enjoy in no time at all.

And, if meat isn’t your bag, dive into the fish display at Pura Vida Fishery where you can get fish that was caught in the Hampton Bays today! It just doesn’t get fresher than that unless you catch it yourself.

I’m including this fabulous monkfish recipe. Capt. Rick was fairly certain he’d have some monkfish on Saturday – he hadn’t gone fishing for this week’s market yet when this went to press – but this recipe is just as delicious with striped bass or grouper. I love all the aromatic spices this recipe calls for. Just reading it makes me feel like I’m in a souk. Looking forward to our new spice vendor who will by dropping by the market soon!

Roast Monkfish Moroccan Style
4 To 6 small fillets monkfish tails * (1 1/2 lb) membranes removed
1/4 c parsley; minced
1 T minced garlic
1/4 tsp cayenne or to taste
1 tbp ground cumin seeds
1/2 tsp ground coriander seeds
1 pinch  ground cloves
1/4 tsp  ground cinnamon
1/4 c  olive oil
2 c  chopped ripe or canned tomatoes, drained
S/P to taste

* if desired substitute strips of blackfish grouper, or striped bass cut from steaks or thick fillets

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Rinse and dry monkfish. Mix together the parsley, garlic, cayenne, cumin, coriander, cloves and cinnamon (in a food processor if desired; add a little olive oil or white wine if needed to process). Rub monkfish all over with this mixture.

Spread half the olive oil on the bottom of a roasting pan. Place the monkfish in the pan, top with the tomatoes and the remaining olive oil, and roast until the monkfish is tender, 20-30 minutes, turning once or twice. Serve over rice or with bread, with the sauce spooned over it.

See you at the market,
Pascale Le Draoulec
food writer/ author/ farmers market director