The forecast for this weekend is rain, so I have heard, as I do not follow the weather reports. There, I have said it for the record - I choose to let the day surprise me. If I really want to know what it is going to be like that day, I just look outside OR if need be, I actually step outside and test the air.
Rain has not affected the crowds or the spirit at the market. It has delayed the crops by a few weeks, and gave us a storm to contend with at FreshFest last Thursday evening but regardless, the market is well attended, rain or shine. Thank You all for that!
Currently in-season produce includes beets, peppers, sweet corn, melons, peaches, pickling cucs, eggplant, and tomatoes. The first few apples are starting to show up (Paula Reds) and a few things are winding down - mostly the blueberries and raspberries. Learning to blanche is one of the easiest methods of extending the bounty of summer/fall harvest into winter. One year I decided to double up on almost everything I purchased from the farmers market and froze half of what i bought to extend into the winter. We enjoyed stuffed peppers (freeze as halves on a tray and store in ziploc bags; stuff frozen and bake- yummy!), fresh sweet corn, brocoli, green beans, and blueberries(also freeze on a tray, no blanching, and store in ziploc bags) through the entire winter season. I also made freezer tomatoe sauce, and froze leeks, onions, and 1 cup serving sizes of kidney beans and black eyed peas to make a quick crock pot of warming chili. These are just a few of my quick, easy methods of continuing to support local through the winter and make meals work for busy families. We are having a canning and preserves demonstration at the market on Saturday, September 12 - come with your questions and see how easy it is to preserve. I just finished off a jar of pickled green beans that was from my first attempt at preserving which we did with beans and dill from the market - they were delicious!
We are having some local talent performing this weekend so bring your chairs and prepare to stay a while. Centrepiece Marketing will be presenting the talented Siobhan O'Neal.
Born and raised in London, Ontario, Siobhan O’Neal stepped onto the local music scene an ex-band geek with a book full of songs and an electric keyboard. Finding her passion in a performing arts school and her church youth band, she began writing songs at the age of 12 and performed her original work for the first time at her high school talent show. Her musical style has grown and developed over the years, incorporating her childhood influences of classic rock and classical training to a range of folk and indie traits. Her songwriting is deeply introspective, exploring thoughts on disappointment, truth, hope and love.
Please visit Centre Piece Marketing to keep up to date with what's happening on the local music scene.
Have you heard about My Pick? There is information inside the market building about this new program from Farmers' Markets Ontario. My Pick vendors are verified local farmers audited by a representative of Farmers Markets Ontario. The My Pick logo is a way to ensure that the farmer is local, is the grower of what they are selling and that it is produced on their farm. Please note, if a farmer is not 'My Pick' verified, it does not mean that they don't qualify but rather that they have not done the verification process. Please continue to talk to the vendors about their produce, if they are the growers of all that they bring to the market, and where they source their additional produce if they do bring other produce.
This is the last Saturday in August but far from the last Saturday of the season (Market Season Ends October 31st ). Just like I don't follow the weather, I try not to get in on the famous saying of "Where has the time gone?" But sometimes, like this month of August, I just can not believe how the month has disappeared! My how time flies when you're having a social gathering every week! There are groups (ie. Doors Open & ACO of Ontario, Summer Blast, and IPM2010) at the market promoting other community events happening into September, October and later. Be sure to stop by their booths for tickets and details!
Look forward to seeing you soon,