Displaying items by tag: High Rock Park
Every year, certain foods find a following nationally among chefs, food writers, and other aficionados. These items often are nutritious, delicious, and add diversity to the daily diet. One place to find such foods is the Saratoga Farmers’ Market. Here’s a quick rundown of the top trending foods available at the market now:
Good for the Gut
At the Wednesday and Saturday markets, look for Saratoga Apple. Their table offers not only their well-known apples but also such products as their own apple cider vinegar, made from fermented apple juice. Apple cider vinegar has been credited with reducing cholesterol and lowering blood sugar levels. Try it in salad dressings or marinades.
One regular purveyor of probiotics is Puckers Gourmet Pickles. Look for them and their jars of fermented vegetables on Saturdays. They offer pickles, kraut, and kimchi -- all of which give the body a healthy dose of probiotics, which are live microorganisms that promote healthy digestion.
Junbucha, a creation of Saratoga Urban Farm may also be found at the market on Saturdays. Jun is made by fermenting tea and honey with a SCOBY (Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast), creating a naturally effervescent and tangy drink that contains prebiotics, probiotics, and amino acids.
New seasonal fruits and vegetables appear at the farmers’ market each week. There is one distinct difference between locally grown produce at the farmers’ market and what is found on shelves at the grocery store. Locally grown produce is not perfect, and people are finally embracing misshapen and a-symmetrical as totally edible.
Different Sources of Protein
Squashville Farm is looking forward to bringing goat meat back to the Wednesday market in June. This meat, described as an “ethical meat” by some, is delicious in stews, burgers, or on the grill. Also, look for bone broths at the Wednesday market from Slate River and Ramble Creek farms. Bone broth is being hailed for it’s nutritional value and immune boosting properties.
And, finally, mushrooms. Mariaville Mushroom Men and Ramble Creek Farm are offering a wide variety of mushrooms, including shitakes, oysters, lion’s mane, chestnuts and others. These bites of goodness are filled with potassium, niacin, selenium, vitamin B, and carry a flavor and texture that is unbeatable. Try them sauteed with olive oil or butter, roasted with root vegetables, or stirred into a pasta.
The opening month of the Saratoga Farmers’ Market’s outdoor season is like a debut to summer.
Several vendors are offering seasonal flowers, herbs, and vegetable seedlings. These items make ideal Mothers’ Day gifts. They also offer fast doses of color and character to fledgling gardens and promises of great harvests to come.
Look this weekend and next Wednesday for bright bunches of daffodils, branches of lilacs, and sweet-smelling hyacinths. Such flowers are available as bouquets. With them are pots of geraniums and packs of bedding plants, the horticultural term for fast-growing seasonal flowers and ornamental plants that can be transplanted into gardens immediately.
On Wednesdays, you can find such plants at the Butternut Ridge and Burger Farm stalls on the south end of the High Rock Park pavilion. And, at the end of May, Goode Farm will bring floral arrangements, dried flowers, and cut flowers. On Saturdays, look for flowers and plants at the Scotch Ridge Tree and Berries and Balet Flowers and Design. Also on Saturdays, the Wild Things Rescue Nursery is on hand with a variety of native plants that can help build bee and butterfly gardens. And cut flower bouquets from Lot 32 Flower Farm will return in early June.
If growing food is your goal, many market vendors also offer a wide array of vegetable and herb seedlings. Some can go into the ground immediately; others are best nurtured in sunny windows until soil temperatures have warmed to about 65-70 degrees.
At the Burger Farm stall, tomato plants already are flowering and bearing small fruits. Andy Burger, who operates the farm with his parents, said that they started the plants at the end of January, raising them with heat and light in a greenhouse. The tomatoes are available for purchase now along with such summer plants as peppers, eggplants, cucumbers, zucchini and summer squash. Burger recommends bringing such seedlings indoors at night and on chillier May days.
For immediate transplanting, try lettuce, spinach, arugula, kale, and other greens, along with such herbs as cilantro, oregano, marjoram, mint, parsley, rosemary, sage, and oregano.
Other vendors who offer vegetable and herb seedlings include Butternut Ridge, Scotch Ridge, Balet, and Otrembiak Farm.
Most vendors will offer planting advice. Master gardeners with the Cornell Cooperative Extension Services are at both the Wednesday and Saturday markets, as well.
Shushan Hydro Farms at the Saratoga Farmers' Market.
Saturday mornings are market mornings for hundreds of area residents. Join them Saturday, May 4 at High Rock Park as the Saratoga Farmers’ Market’s 41st season opens.
Farmers, home artisans, and craftspeople will join city officials and others for a ribbon cutting just before 9 a.m. Then, as music from the Running the River band fills the air, vendors will begin offering fresh vegetables and fruits, meats, eggs, dairy products, home-baked goods, prepared foods, flowers, art, and more.
“We are thrilled to welcome several new vendors this year,” says market administrator Emily Meagher. “Our variety of local products is unparalleled.”
About 65 vendors participate in the Saturday market. The Saratoga Farmers’ Market also operates from 3-6 p.m. every Wednesday, with about 30 vendors.
Bring your shopping list and walk, bike, or drive to High Rock Park. Grab a coffee made with locally roasted beans and perhaps a light breakfast from one of the many prepared food vendors featuring items like crepes or breakfast sandwiches.
Vendor stalls fill the pavilions and spill out onto the lawns. Volunteers will watch your bags and help transport your goods to your car with the Friends of the Market’s veggie valet wagons. The FreshFoodNY app and pickup service is available for
This year, we encourage you to visit the market via bicycle, if feasible. We also invite you to bring your own bags to reduce plastic and will have totes available for purchase. We are continuing our compost collection program and will accept fruit and vegetable scraps, coffee grounds, used tea bags, and similar items. We have an ATM on site, and many vendors accept credit cards. We also accept SNAP benefits
While shopping, check out the children’s activities, and booths featuring the Adirondack Live Steamers, Saratoga Springs Preservation Foundation, and Cornell Cooperative Extension Service’s master gardeners.
Says market administrator Emily Meagher, “To experience spring in Saratoga is to opt to dine on the patio, order tickets from SPAC, and embrace the return of the outdoor farmers' market where the fragrance of flowers and produce mixes with freshly baked bread.”
See you there!
SATURDAY VENDORS AT THE SARATOGA FARMERS’ MARKET
- Alaturco Mediterranean Grill
- Argyle Cheese Factory
- Balet Flowers & Design, LLC
- Ballston Lake Apiaries
- Battenkill Valley Creamery
- Burger Farm
- Clark Dahlia Gardens & Greenhouses
- Dancing Ewe Farms
- Dickinson’s Delights
- Elihu Farm
- Euro Delicacies
- Feathered Antler
- Freddy's Rockin' Hummus
- Giovani Fresco
- Gómez Veggie Ville
- Grandma Apple's Cheesecakes, LLC
- Green Jeans Market Farm
- Halls Pond Farm
- Humiston's Vegetables
- Kim Dolan Designed Jewelry
- Kokinda Farm
- Lake George Distilling Co., LLC
- Lewis Waite Farm
- Longlesson Farm
- Lot 32 Flower Farm
- M & A Farm
- Mangiamo LLC
- Mariaville Mushroom Men
- Momma's Secret Salad Dressings
- Moxie Ridge Farm
- Mrs. Londons
- Muddy Trail Jerky Co.
- Mugzy's Barkery
- Nettle Meadow
- Nut Zez, LLC
- Old World Farm
- Otrembiak Farm
- Owl Wood Farm
- Petra Pocket Pies
- Pleasant Valley Farm
- Puckers Gourmet
- Pura Vida Fisheries, Inc
- R&G Cheese Makers
- Ramble Creek Farm
- Rock Hill Bakehouse
- Row to Hoe Farm
- Saratoga Apple
- Saratoga Chocolate Co.
- Saratoga Crackers®
- Saratoga Peanut Butter Co.
- Saratoga Spicery
- Saratoga Suds 'n' Stuff
- Saratoga Urban Farm
- Scotch Ridge Berry Farm
- Slate Valley Farms
- Slyboro Cider House
- Something's Brewing
- Springbrook Hollow Farm Distillery
- The Chocolate Spoon
- The Food Florist
- The Saratoga Winery
- The Smoothie Shoppe
- Vermont Spatzle Company
- Underwood's Greenhouse / Shushan Valley Hydro Farm
- Vital Eats
- Wild Things Rescue Nursery
- Yankee Distillers
- Zoe Burghard Ceramics
Visit the Saratoga Farmers’ Market for perfect pumpkins to paint, carve and cook, and to get a sack full of other Halloween treats too! Between now and October 31, come to the market at High Rock Park any Saturday 9 am - 1 pm or Wednesday 3 - 6 pm to pick out products for constructing your own Halloween party, and on Wednesday October 31, come join ours!
Halloween’s mascot is the pumpkin, and at the market we celebrate this special squash in fresh baked goods, hot and cold beverages, decorations, dinners and desserts; we even have unique, locally made, pumpkin-spiced marshmallows! The tradition of carving pumpkins dates to Irish immigrants who came to America to escape famine. Legend says that Stingy Jack was a thief and trickster who even fooled the devil into making a promise not to take his soul when he died. The devil kept this promise, but God wouldn’t let an unsavory person like Jack into heaven. With just a burning coal in a turnip to use for a light, Jack’s been roaming the earth ever since. Because of this, children in Ireland put a glowing coal into a carved potato, turnip or beet to frighten away Stingy Jack. Once in America, pumpkins made the perfect lanterns. That is where we get Jack-O’-Lanterns.
Big pumpkins make the perfect carved jack-o-lantern, while small sugar pumpkins are delicious for roasting to make puree for pies, dips and pumpkin bread. Save the seeds of either to sprinkle with your favorite spice and roast as a quick crunchy snack.
If a party is on your Halloween schedule, try these tricks for some healthy and unusual treats: Use a small pumpkin or other gourd as a bowl. Fill it with a sweet pumpkin dip accompanied by sliced apples on the side, or try a savory dip or hummus with vegetable sticks.
Another fun idea is to make kebabs of fruit, veggies or cured meat and cheese. Stick them in a painted or carved pumpkin. It’ll make a wonderful centerpiece for your party table.
And on Halloween itself, come celebrate at the Saratoga Farmers’ Market! Trick-or-treat for candy at the vendors’ booths, win prizes in our costume contest, and paint a pumpkin in a mess-free craft! Before heading home, grab some veggies, a delicious prepared dish and a jug of sweet cider for a quick dinner on this spookiest evening of the year.
October brings a cornucopia of special activities to the Saratoga Farmers’ Market. Along with sales and tastings of autumn’s abundant harvest, we celebrate the last out-door markets of 2018 with llamas to cuddle, ponies to ride, a pumpkin contest, crafts and children’s activities, live music, and a Halloween Party!
Photo by Pattie Garrett.
• Saturday, October 13
Visit with Llamas, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Stock up on fresh local farmers’ market food and beverages and meet the llamas of Dakota Ridge Farm! Pet them, learn about their origins and kind temperament and the many uses of their fiber. Children can also decorate a bookmark with llama fiber and everyone can check out the ponchos, blankets, socks, and other products made from high-quality llama fiber.
• Wednesday, October 24
Customer Appreciation Day, 3-6 p.m.
As the Saratoga Farmers’ Market’s 40th outdoor market season draws to a close, we say thank you to the community of Saratoga Springs for supporting local farms and businesses! We’ll have fall food tastings and special sales, live music, children’s activities and free pony rides from our friends at Adirondack Dreamcatcher Farm.
• Saturday, October 27
Fall Fest, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.
In conjunction with the 17th Annual Downtown Business Association’s Fall Festival, the Saratoga Farmers’ Market will celebrate the fall season in beautiful downtown Saratoga Springs with special activities for people of all ages. Grab a hot breakfast sandwich and cider or coffee and a pastry, stock up on fresh local produce for hearty fall cooking, get a frozen casserole and other locally prepared dishes for quick healthy weeknight meals, enjoy a free fall craft, sample pumpkin-spiced treats, and enjoy the seasonal favorites of over 65 vendors gathered in High Rock Park.
• Wednesday, October 31
Halloween Party, 3-6 p.m.
Trick-or-treating, a kids’ costume contest with prizes, a pumpkin-painting craft, a children’s activity sponsored by the Saratoga Springs Public Library, music, delicious fall food tastings, and just the right amount of spooky fun!
Also, all of our market days feature fresh produce, dairy, eggs and meat from Saratoga and nearby counties; wine and spirits from our region’s vintners and distillers; cozy wool hats and other fall apparel; unique jewelry, pottery and specialty items made by local artisans; potted mums and gorgeous fall flower bouquets; and fresh baked goods, prepared food and live music! And as our outdoor season draws to a close, get ready to join us at our winter home every Saturday from November to April inside the Lincoln Baths at the Saratoga Spa State Park, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. For more details see our website at SaratogaFarmersMarket.org or our Facebook page!
MINUTES BEFORE THE OPENING BELL RINGS Wednesdays at the Saratoga Farmers’ Market, Julz and Marty Irion fire up a burner to warm samples of their product, a gluten-free spätzle.
The bell rings and a heady aroma fills the air. Market goers walk by, stop and smell.
Marty and Julz Irion at Octoberfest 2018.
“Would you like a sample?” Marty asks.
As the shoppers taste the dish, Marty and Julz tell its story. Spätzle is a German dish made typically with wheat, flour, and eggs. The Irions’ version is gluten-free, made with a blend of tapioca, corn, and potato flours along with local milk and eggs, and nutmeg.
Together, Marty and Julz have created a no-boil spätzle that is unique, delicious, and the only one of its kind worldwide.
Marty was born in Erlangen, Germany and loved the dish, made the traditional way. He and Julz met in 1985, and married four years later. Julz started to make spätzle for the family.
Eight years ago, the couple needed to drop wheat from their diets. They were unwilling to let go of their love for spätzle so Julz began experimenting with alternatives. She found that creating a good gluten-free version of the German favorite was not easy. The experiments stretched out for seven years.
Until March 2017. “The family sat around the dinner table that night,” recalls Marty. “We tasted it and we all said at the same time, ‘This is so good.’ ” They also realized they needed to share it, and decided on March 11, 2017, to go forth with that plan.
Vermont Spätzle Company, based in Arlington, VT, sold its first spätzle in June 2017. The Irions offer it now at 60 stores and farmers’ markets.
The appeal of their spätzle goes beyond being gluten-free. On the packaging are the words “Package to pan in 90 seconds,” making spätzle a quick and easy dish to prepare.
For Julz, perfecting spätzle has been a carefully-thought-out craft. It’s not just the ingredients that matter, she says, but also the method of combining them, one at a time in layers. She emphasizes its versatility: Her spätzle absorbs flavor, retains moisture, and is readily combined with a wide range of ingredients. Marty meanwhile focuses on his love for spätzle, a love he shares as he offers samples and stories. Both he and Julz are gratified that so many customers keep coming back.
A couple of weeks ago, on my way back from a visit to a farm in Washington County, I stopped at Saratoga Apple in Schuylerville. Nate Darrow, who owns and operates Saratoga Apple with Christine Gaud, suggested I try a Williams Pride.
It was love at first bite.
Williams Pride apples are dark red, soft skinned and have a flesh flecked with streaks of red. Their flavor is delicately sweet, like summer itself. You can find them tomorrow at the Saratoga Farmers’ Market with a range of other early apples.
But hurry. Tomorrow might be the last chance to savor these fruits of summer before Saratoga Apple’s full array of fall apples roll in.
Why such a brief season? According to Darrow, summer apples do not store well. They are thinner and go soft quickly. Unlike most of the many varieties that sustain market goers throughout the year, the summer apples come and go fast.
“We call them fragile flowers,” says Darrow. “They are meant to be savored briefly, then forgotten until the following year.”
Among the “fragile flowers” are Williams Pride, Pristine, Zestar, Paula Red, and Ginger Gold. Like a bouquet of flowers, they look pretty on a plate, offering a range of colors: deep red, bright yellow, softly sheened green.
Their flavors also span a broad spectrum: extraordinarily sweet to boldly tart.
As I bit into the Williams Pride, memories of childhood surfaced. My family lived in India for a year in 1973-74. We got fresh fruits and vegetables almost daily from a vendor we called the sabzi wallah, which translates to the vegetable seller. He would pull into our compound and call out the residents to come. We would get apples that were small, red, and sweet.
This week, the calendar shifted from summer to fall. With it, the apples of fall – Cortlands, Empires, Northern Spies, and Belle de Boskoop, among others – are filling Saratoga Apple’s bins at the farmers’ market. Apple crisps, pies, and sauces beckon.
But tomorrow I hope to fill my bag with the last of the fragile flowers, for a final taste of summer until the following year.
Erin Luciani, owner of Lot 32 Flower Farm.
On Christie Road, off Route 29, lie 500 acres, deeded to the McNaughton family in 1763. Erin Luciani and her husband purchased 84 acres of it six years ago, with a plan for Erin to grow flowers from March through October and spend winters with her husband Philip, a Navy fighter pilot, wherever he was deployed. After his retirement, they would build a home on the land.
One night, while poring through historic records that a neighbor brought over, Erin Luciani discovered the land they had acquired was Lot 32. In that moment, she knew the name of her farm: Lot 32.
Lot 32 is the Saratoga Farmers’ Market’s newest vendor. Luciani joined the Saturday market in July, after a year of selling flowers at farmers’ markets in Greenwich, Cambridge, and Fort Edward. She offers cut flowers and pre-arranged bouquets. Stop by her stall on the south lawn and pick out blooms you like. Luciani will arrange them, or give you tips on doing it yourself. The bouquets will stay fresh for a week if you change the water daily and make fresh cuts to the stems.
The freshness of the bouquets is about the freshness of the flowers. Luciani grows all of her bouquet ingredients on an acre outdoors. She starts seeding in March with heat mats and grow lights, and transplants in May. Her busiest seasons are summers and falls when she works 14-hour days, doing four farmers’ markets as well as weddings and other events.
“It’s a working farm,” she says. “Pretty because there’s flowers, but not glamorous.”
And on a rainy morning, she adds, “muck boots are not a horrible idea.”
Most of her flowers are annuals, planted close together to encourage the growth of tall stems. Many are flowering herbs, vegetables and grains, such as clary sage, millet, kale and basil.
Luciani grew up in Los Angeles and taught math and science for 14 years. Her husband grew up in Washington County. On a family visit in the winter, she fell in love with the area’s beauty.
“I love having four seasons,” she says. “It creates a rhythm for flowers, for life overall.”
Chowderfest is just around the corner … well, it isn’t, but from a planner’s perspective it might very well be.
Part of farming is planning. So, even as farmers and regulars at the Saratoga Farmers’ Market are savoring the abundance of summer produce, many also are thinking ahead to winter.
Tomatoes, zucchini, corn, beans, and eggplant are plentiful now at the farmers’ market and in backyard gardens. As the days shorten and temperatures drop, they’ll disappear.
I have to confess that while my husband likes to cook down pounds of tomatoes into sauces to can, I enjoy eating what’s fresh and in season. But every once so often I get a hankering in winter for a taste of the summer – for “fresh” green beans in the legendary Thanksgiving green-bean casserole, for sweet corn in clam chowder in early February.
So how to get these tastes of summer in the middle of winter?
One simple answer is to freeze them now while they’re at their peak flavor.
I’ve also balked at freezing too much in the past, partly because I forget what I have frozen and partly because many recipes require blanching vegetables first to preserve their flavor. Blanching requires dropping vegetables into boiling water, cooking them for a few minutes, then plunging them into ice water. It prevents the enzymes in vegetables from deteriorating. But it is a chore.
However, blanching isn’t required for all vegetables, especially if you plan to use them within six months. I’ve decided to experiment this month. I’ll freeze tomatoes in freezer bags whole, probably for a month, for my husband to can. Zucchini, I’ll shred, for winter baking. Green beans are being trimmed and frozen for casseroles and stir fries. I’ll blanch a few eggplants and save them for bharta, a softly mashed Indian eggplant dish I like.
And, finally, corn. The cold of winter and the warmth of chowder are on my brain, so I’m going to try freezing some corn straight on the cob for shucking when I use it. I’ll also trying blanching some to ensure I have sweet, crunchy “fresh” corn when Chowderfest comes.