Crisp and fresh: those words apply equally well to the weather lately and to the apples, pears, and produce available at the Lansdowne Farmers Market. Thank you, Mother Nature, for the glorious autumn we're enjoying. There's nothing better than throwing on a toasty warm sweater or jacket when there's a nip in the air and going out shopping for the season's bounty on a (hopefully) bright and sunny day.
Some people may assume there won't be anything left at the Market after we've had the first frost, like we did overnight Sunday. Au contraire! Apparently a touch of frost can be a fabulous thing for plants that love the cooler weather, like cauliflower, kale, broccoli, radishes, turnips, chard, cabbage, and, we are happy to announce, Brussels sprouts, which are expected to show their cute little heads at the Market this week. So why would the veggies get sweeter when the temps dip? It's something sciencey about the sugars developing in the veggies. In fact, they may even benefit from a few frosty nights. We are unlikely to see tomatoes this week, but corn, peppers, zucchini, potatoes, yams, and onions will all be on deck to serve your many hearty fall meals. Our choice is this trifecta of roasted potatoes with bacon and Brussels sprouts using this recipe.
Admittedly, we're still fixated on apples but trust us that there still are recipes you should try: apple-caramel hand pies, (not) sausage rolls with apple, kale salad with apples, cranberries and pecans, homemade apple chips, mini-apple pies in muffin tins, and fruit leather.
We talked about honey back in July, explaining what the amber viscous liquid is all about but, fair warning, it's late October already and that means you only have a few more chances to stock up on honey at Fruitwood Orchards before the end of the season. These recipes should keep you busy with your honey: honey and tangerine whipped goat cheese crostini, honey sriracha chicken wings, imploding honey custard cake, cinnamon honey butter, honey-glazed baby carrots, and slow-cooker honey sesame chicken. Of course, if you are the practical sort, you'll want to prepare for the inevitable winter cold by making your own honey-ginger throat drops. They won't cure you but they will soothe your throat and make you proud of your own kitchen-medicine accomplishments.
Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice
Speaking of sweet things, we do hope you'll enter your favorite dessert in the October 31 Sweet Endings Dessert Contest. Note that you're required to include at least one ingredient from the Market, so this Saturday is your last chance to stock up!
Not a baker yourself? You can put in a silent auction bid for the dessert (which you'll get to take home minus a small sliver given to the contest judges). Proceeds from the auction and the entry fees ($5 per dessert) will be donated to the local community food bank.
This Week's Vendors
This is a week for Neil's Sharpening Service, so don't forget those blades that could use a good honing. Remember that in addition to kitchen knives and reel mowers, Neil's crew can put a new edge on garden shears, clippers, and other handheld implements for keeping your yard in check. If you miss your chance this week, they plan to be back for the bonus Market on November 21. But why risk it?
As we reported last week, Buy the Dozen won't be at the Market through the end of the month but, never fear, we've invited Frecon Farm to bring extra flats of breads to tide us over these last few weeks.
October 31 is going to be a real busy day at the Market to end the regular season.
First, it's Community Day, so come on out to meet members of area organizations and businesses who apply for a vending/information spot.
Next, because it's Halloween there will be trick or treating for costumed kids and adults alike among the vendors. Then, starting at 1:00, children accompanied by adults can parade from the LFM parking lot down to the Twentieth Century Club, where they will be treated to a Halloween party with snacks, crafts, games, and prizes until 3:00 pm.
Finally, be sure to bring canned goods and nonperishable foods for the local food bank.
Poetry & Music, Tricks & Treats
The Regency Cafe and the Mad Poets Society are presenting a seasonal treat with a few tricks thrown in for their Rhyme Rhythm and Reason event on Sunday, October 25 starting at 2 pm. Singer/songwriter Seth Lehman will lead off the festivities with his performance and then there will be an open mic for poets who are invited to perform at least one Halloween Haiku poem. Costumes are optional. The Regency is located under the Lansdowne Theater marquee at 29 N. Lansdowne Ave. and parking is free on Sundays right across the street. For more info, email Camelia Nocella, coordinator of poetry and music at the Regency or visit the Mad Poets Society website.