Dear Mother Nature: Please make up your mind :)
Let’s hope with the official beginning of June we’ve seen the last the FROST warnings – I mean, what’s with that? Last week had so many of our farmer friends panicking to protect precious crops of produce. Personally, I lost a few cukes and maybe a few tomato plants, but my frustration cannot be compared.
With the ushering in of the summer season, the market really takes shape. We all start thinking of easy, fresh meals. You’ll find lots of options here. We have a well balanced group of meat producers at our market ready for your summer needs – fresh turkey from Oegema, allllll kinds of meat of Farmgate, outside we have pastured pork, and we’ve now introduced Derek Weaver, the fantastic fisherman. He is selling locally caught Perch & Pickeral and has had a complete sell out each weekend he has attended. Welcome aboard Derek!
Outside more and more early produce is lining tables. If you are looking at growing your own this year, several vendors are offering many veggie starts to make gardening easy. If you lost a few plants to frost last week, they have you covered to re-plant. Don’t be discouraged! Still lots of time! Beautiful local flowers and bedding plants are still a plenty too! Add some colour and beauty! The market has you covered!
See you this weekend!
The Horton Farmers Market
It’s a buzz word in the foodie world, and this weekend we have two vendors offering traditionally fermented food for sale at the Market. Visit Vicky at the Harvest Pantry or Cindy at Elgin Harvest to learn more about ferments!
Humans all over the world have been fermenting food since ancient times. The earliest evidence of winemaking dates back to eight thousand years ago in the Caucasus area of Georgia. Seven-thousand-year-old jars which once contained wine were excavated in the Zagros Mountains in Iran. There is evidence that people were making fermenting beverages in Babylon around 5000 BC, ancient Egypt circa 3150 BC, pre-Hispanic Mexico circa 2000 BC, and Sudan circa 1500 BC. There is also evidence of leavened bread in ancient Egypt dating back to 1500 BC and of milk fermentation in Babylon circa 3000 BC.
8 Reasons to Eat Fermented Foods
1. Fermented foods improve digestion.
Fermenting our foods before we eat them is like partially digesting them before we consume them. According to Joanne Slavin, a professor in the Department of Food Science and Nutrition at the University of Minnesota, “…sometimes people who cannot tolerate milk can eat yogurt. That’s because the lactose (which is usually the part people can’t tolerate) in milk is broken down as the milk is fermented and turns into yogurt.”
2. Fermented foods restore the proper balance of bacteria in the gut.
Do you suffer from lactose intolerance? Gluten intolerance? Constipation? Irritable bowel syndrome? Yeast infections? Allergies? Asthma? All of these conditions have been linked to a lack of good bacteria in the gut.
3. Raw, fermented foods are rich in enzymes.
According to the Food Renegade blog, “Your body needs [enzymes] to properly digest, absorb, and make full use of your food. As you age, your body’s supply of enzymes decreases. This has caused many scientists to hypothesize that if you could guard against enzyme depletion, you could live a longer, healthier life.”
4. Fermenting food actually increases the vitamin content.
According to the Nourished Kitchen blog, “Fermented dairy products consistently reveal an increased level of folic acid which is critical to producing healthy babies as well as pyroxidine, B vitamins, riboflavin and biotin depending on the strains of bacteria present. [1. Vitamin Profiles of Kefirs Made from Milk of Different Species. International Journal of Food Science & Technology. 1991. Kneifel et al]“
5. Eating fermented food helps us to absorb the nutrients we’re consuming.
You can ingest huge amounts of nutrients, but unless you actually absorb them, they’re useless to you. When you improve digestion, you improve absorption.
6. Fermenting food helps to preserve it for longer periods of time.
Milk will go bad in the fridge but kefir and yogurt last a lot longer. Sauerkraut, pickles and salsa will keep for months. And if you’ve got a huge batch of produce in your garden that you don’t know how to use up — ferment it!
7. Fermenting food is inexpensive.
There’s nothing fancy required for this hobby. And many of the foods required to make these recipes are very cheap. You can use inexpensive cabbage to make sauerkraut, or get yourself a kombucha scoby and with just pennies’ worth of water, sugar and tea, you’ve got a health elixir slash soda pop.
8. Fermenting food increases the flavor.
There’s a reason humans enjoy drinking wine and eating stinky cheese. There’s a reason we like sauerkraut on our hot dogs and salsa on our tortilla chips. It tastes good!
Who’s Coming?: Check out our weeks offering of vendors here.
This weekend we welcome the return of Noa Manning! If you know of someone who may be interesting in playing music at the market, please have them email the manager, there are still some weekends available.
Super Fun Weekend from the Friends of the Market Crew!
So far this season we’ve planted a giant sunflower, lettuce and an herb garden.
This weekend we’ve decided to steer away from the dirt and have a good ole’ fashioned fun Scavenger Hunt!
The first 50 kids who come to the Friends of the Market tent will pick up a list of clues. Each clue will lead you to a vendors table. Once you collect all your clues, return to the Friends Booth to claim your “Smile!” from Spicers! Yummy and fun!
Thank you to Nicole Allen for submitting the above photo of daughter Ava hanging out with her Smile Cookie! You’re this weeks winner of $15 in Market Bucks. Want to win next week? Tag yourself or Check in with your Smart Phone this weekend for a chance to win – or submit a photo (by email or facebook)!
We Asked, You ANSWERED!: Last week we asked what your favourite things to do with Rhubarb were, we got some great answers!
Gail wrote: Our family favourite is Rhubarb Crisp. We love the sweet topping on the tart rhubarb—a delicious medley of tastes!
Jaclyn wrote: My favourite thing to do with Big Red is make Rhubarb sauce for ice-cream – it’s so easy and the kids love it! So do I! Just chop, place in a pot, add a few Tbsps of water, a 1/4 cup local honey, and a 1/4 cup local maple syrup and voila – yummy rhubarb sauce for ice-cream!
Rhubarb Recipe: Submitted by Cindy Bircham of Elgin Harvest
Granita makes a fantastic palate cleanser during a meal (after the main course but before dessert) or can be the dessert course itself. Serve in paper cones, glass bowls, margarita glasses with a sprig of mint, small cookies, crème fraîche, or even a wee nip of your favourite liqueur.
When you think about the simplicity of the ingredients and equipment required to make granita, it’s easy to imagine the unlimited flavour combinations available and vessels to serve it in. Don’t have any fresh, local fruit available? Substitute local frozen fruit instead.
Cucumber mint, strawberry balsamic, coffee, orange creamsicle, lemon basil, lavender, almond raspberry, coconut banana…just a few ideas to get you started as the seasons progress.