Rotate Your Own Tires
And here we go, down the slope toward the end of the LFM regular season, the other side of that peak we mentioned last week. Okay, okay, there are 12 Markets to go so it's a rather long slope; nevertheless, we've passed the halfway point. Now's a good time to ask yourself if you're in a Market rut: Are you purchasing pretty much the same things from the same vendors each time you visit? While there's nothing wrong with supporting your favorites (repeat: Not. A. Thing.), consider challenging yourself to try a new product, a new vendor, or both every Saturday from now on. Chances are good that you've skipped some vendors for no reason other than they're not on your usual list; maybe give them a try.
At the very least, alter your schedule a bit. Try showing up a little earlier once in a while because the selection at the Market changes -- ie, dwindles -- as the day goes on. For example, someone we know bought every last elderberry that Livengood Family Farm had a couple weeks ago before anyone else got a shot at them. (Livengood is always worth checking out, since Kristy not infrequently shows up with something unusual, wild, or both, like elderberries or pawpaws, but never a lot of it.) On the other end, vendors are sometimes willing to make deals in the last half hour, throwing in an extra tomato or what have you, so switching up your arrival and departure times could have benefits besides the obvious plus of making it harder to tail you.
The gauntlet is thrown: Tweak your Market routine.
And You Thought Algebra Was Hard
This Saturday is the fourth in August, which happens to have five Saturdays, contrarian that it is. May had five Saturdays also, and we invited our 2/4 vendors to participate that final week. In fairness, the August 29th fifth Saturday goes to the Market's 1/3 vendors, who will also be in attendance the following week, September 5. This is the long way of saying that this week's 2/4 vendors will not be back for three weeks (returning September 12), so if you're low on something sold by a nonweekly vendor, like wine from Paradocx, ravioli from Vera Pasta, or Amazing Acres' wonderful chevre, don't tell yourself you'll wait a couple weeks and restock then. No siree Bob, you'll be waiting three weeks anyway, which is almost a month, and anything can happen in a month. Remember the bird in the hand rule, divide it by 5, carry the 3, solve for X, and make your purchases now.
Not That Kind of Pie
While innocently browsing one of our bookmarked
food porn cooking sites, we came across a recipe for tomato pie that made us want to drop everything and make it immediately. However, the preparation is a little involved and the result is too dazzling to waste on serve as a weeknight family meal, so we've put it in our Impressive Recipes folder, which is where the party foods are found, the dishes you carry regally into a crowded room and push other potluck offerings aside carefully make room on the table for -- the ones that people talk about later. But we're not going to wait long to make it because it calls for a lot of heirloom tomatoes, and the bigger variety you include -- of sizes and colors -- the more knockout it looks, and now is the Time of Ripe Tomatoes and Green Zebra is our stop for them. The recipe uses a crust that's heavy on cheddar, and the accompanying article suggests using lemon thyme as a seasoning instead of oregano so the tomato pie does not venture too far into pizza territory, but our feeling is that pizza is awesome and everything should taste more like pizza, so use oregano if you want to (and we do).
This somewhat less stunning looking and quicker to make but no less delicious sounding polenta with fresh corn and cherry tomatoes may be what the family ends up eating tonight, so don't you worry about them. They're just fine. (And here are a few more tomato recipes just in case you're still looking for the one that makes you want to stop reading and go cook.)
This would normally be a week for Neil's Sharpening Service, but he's on vacation, so catch him next on September 25. Uncle Harold's Snacks just let us know they can't make it this week either, so you'll have to wait until September 12 to restock on their products.
Pope or Pups?
If you were intending to stay as far away from Center City as possible the last weekend in September when Pope Francis comes to Philly, you should know that in addition to its usual charms, the LFM will be host to Dog Day on September 26, so why not come see us and bring your pooch? Animal Friends of Lansdowne is kindly organizing the event for us, and we'll start leaking details soon. All we're at liberty to tell you at the moment is that there will indeed be a dog parade. What's better than that? Not much besides a belly rub.
Look for the list of next Saturday's Community Day #2 participants here next week. They'll be in the Market's northerly expansion row on August 29.
We haven't given away any Market Bucks in forever. Tell ya what: Try something new this week and then come tell us what you bought and we'll give you a Buck. It's like an instant no-mail rebate. Just that simple.
And how about volunteering to set up or break down next week, August 29? We could really use the help, as much of the committee is flying the coop then. Stop by the Market Manager tent this week and confirm if you think you can assist us. Know that we will be most muchos graciasful.
Two Sides, Two Years -- Coincidence?
If you still have a turntable or record player, there's no better fun than pawing through crates of albums and 45s looking for your own personal treasure. For some people it's the Beatles, for some it's Donna Summer, for us it's that song that closed out our seventh grade dance. So thank goodness for Vinyl Revival, which is celebrating 2 years in Lansdowne by offering shoppers half off all new and vintage records this Friday and Saturday, August 21 and 22, which doubles the fun of crate diving. The store opens at 11:00 am on Friday and 10:00 am on Saturday, and there are events both evenings (exceptional short films on Friday and a concert on Saturday) that will make nighttime shopping possible. Call them (610-284-3537) if you have questions about inventory or hours. And be sure to wish them happy second anniversary as you make off with a stack of discounted music!