Yesterday morning I went apple picking with my neighbor. It was a cute little local place, with a beautiful old barn and old apple trees of all varieties (Bailey’s Orchard in Whitestown). For me, apples signify fall. Mr Chiots LOVES apples and apple cider, he’s in seventh heaven during the fall!
I didn’t pick any for myself, we have a few apple trees in the garden that are loaded with apples. A gallon of cider and a few small baskets of pears did make it home with me though. I’m hoping to pick a few baskets of apples today to get started on making some applesauce and apple butter for Mr Chiots.
Do you have a favorite variety of apple?Filed under Going Local | Comments (11)
This is one of only a few peppers that I have on my plants in the garden. I knew my pepper harvest would be low due to the location of the pepper plants. Then the ducks decided that pepper plants were super tasty and my hopes of harvesting even a half bushel of peppers from my garden were dashed. I have been harvesting a few green peppers and other hot peppers for the past month, but I do not have enough to make roasted red peppers for the pantry. I don’t do a lot of canning of garden produce, but I do love to have a few jars of roasted red peppers in the cupboard. They’re so much cheaper than buying them at the store, and you can customize them with white wine vinegar, homegrown garlic, and a really good olive oil. I even use the brine to make salad dressing. (“>here’s my post about making them, including the recipe)
Yesterday, I purchased a load of peppers at the Belfast Farmers Market to preserve. Next week I hope to buy more, along with some jalapeños (which I preserve in the same manner and dehydrate as well).
I also purchased a box of tomatoes since mine are taking they’re time ripening up. Roasted tomato passatta is something I don’t want my pantry to be without as well. I must admit, I’m thankful to live in an area where there are loads of farmers growing all kinds of wonderful organic produce. It comes in handy when my crop doesn’t do well.
Have you had any crops that have done less than stellar this season?Filed under Canning, Farmer's Market, Going Local, Harvest Keepers Challenge | Comments (17)
In the future, we hope to plant blueberry bushes and raspberry canes, until then we have to find them elsewhere. Lucky for us, Sweet Season Farm is located just a few miles down the road and has pick-your-own raspberry and blueberries.
Yesterday morning we loaded up and headed down there to pick. Our neighbor and her mother-in-law were also in our party.
Mr Chiots and I didn’t end up getting any blueberries, we plan on heading back for those later this week. I might freeze just a few, or we might eat them all fresh. Last night I was thinking about making a batch of Nourishing Custard with fresh raspberries. Or I might pull out a few of my cookbooks for inspiration. I love fresh berries in season!
Do you grow any berries in your garden? If you had a glut of red and black raspberries what would you make with them?Filed under Going Local | Comments (16)
I have to admit, I’m a sucker for a farm stand. Whenever I see a sign like this, I slam on the brakes to see what they’ve got. Last Saturday, on my way between plant sales, I spotted this beautiful farm on a back road.
Lucky me, I scored a few bags of spinach and very spicy tiny leaved salad mix. Mr Chiots and I especially love seeing these when we’re out traveling. It certainly makes adding local vegetable to your plate much easier wherever you are.
I especially love little stands like this that work on the honor system. There’s something so comforting about knowing that there are still honest folks in the world and things like this still work.
Do you ever stop when you see signs like this while traveling?Filed under Friday Favorites, Going Local | Comments (9)
Yesterday was the first farmers market of the season (well, if you don’t count the ones that are open all year long). I drove up to Waterville, to their farmers market.
It was small, but had it all. Spinach, arugula, lots of cheese, oxtail, liver and a few other goodies made it into my basket. There was even a local ice cream truck. Mr Chiots wasn’t along, and it was rather chilly, so I skipped the cone.
Even though I grow a lot of my own produce, I still love to hit the local farmers markets. You can find varieties that do well in your area and often find new and interesting vegetables to try as well. I’m super excited that it’s finally farmers market season again.
I’m pretty excited that I have a lot of markets to choose from, there are probably 10 different farmers markets that I can attend within a half our drive from our home.
Has your local farmers market started up again?Filed under Going Local | Comments (19)