Thursday, July 17, 2008

Grapevine July 20 2008 Market

this week
- Change in Dog Policy
- What's Coming To The Market This Week?
- Cooking Ideas - Lemon Cornmeal Muffins with Berries

Last weekend was very busy, the busiest day of the season thus far and one of the busiest market days ever. Was it the gelato that brought so many people out?

The market has experienced tremendous growth this season and the parking lots are even more crowded than in prior years. Please be patient if you are driving to the market. There is usually plenty of parking on SW Vermont Street so it might be worth your while to just park on SW Vermont instead of trying to park in the lot. The increase in attendance has also forced us to make a policy change which is outlined in the first article. We are trying to make shopping at the market a pleasant experience for everyone. Bear with us as we work out how to manage this new growth.

Greg Clarke returns to the market this week. This is also the final week to drop off books for the Hillsdale Alliance Book Sale. The 32nd Annual Pancake Breakfast is next week. The Red Cross will be conducting a Blood Drive at the market next week as well.

See you on Sunday!

Eamon Molloy
Market Manager

Change in Dog Policy

If you are are a regular Hillsdale Farmers Market shopper then you will have noticed that there are a lot more customers at the market this year. The market attendance has increased over 25% since last year. The increased attendance has also meant more dogs and more dog problems. We have been handing out copies of the market dog rules and had some success in lowering the number of dog issues.

However, the record summer crowds are creating a potentially dangerous situation for dogs and people. On average, 3,000 people are walking through the summer market in a four hour session. As a dog owner, I know that walking through crowds this big on a hot summer day is often very stressful for dogs. The animals get bumped, stepped on and are overwhelmed by the many smells. We have had many small incidents over the last six weeks and the number of incidents are increasing with each market session. In order to insure the safety of dogs, customers and vendors, the Hillsdale Farmers' Market board voted this week to ban dogs from the market until the beginning of the winter market season in November. Dogs will be allowed in the market from November through April when the market is less crowded. This new policy will go into effect on August 3, 2008. We will be handing out flyers to everyone bringing a dog into the market for the next two weeks.

I speak for the board when I say that most dogs visiting the market are very well behaved. The combination of heat, big crowds and a finite space make for a very stressful situation for the even best natured animal. We look forward to seeing your dogs again in November. But for now please leave your dog at home for the rest of the season. Thank you all for your understanding about this matter.

What's Coming To The Market This Week?

This week is much like last week. There will be a lot of berries - blackberries, blueberries and raspberries. Strawberries will be less available. Cherries, mostly Vans and Rainiers, will be in good supply. Peaches are still a few weeks off but apricots and nectarines are readily available.

As for vegetables, snow peas, fava beans, sugar snap peas, lettuce, chard, zucchini and fresh onions will be plentiful. You'll also find arugula, napa cabbage, green cabbage, carrots, beets, radishes, tomatoes and a lot more. Check the availability list for the complete list of who's coming this weekend and what they expect to be selling.

Sundance Lavender

Blossom Vinegars (back next week)
Little Pots and Pans (back August 3)
Salubrious (back next week)
Savory et Sweet (back next week)

Cooking Ideas - Lemon Cornmeal Muffins with Berries

After a slow start, there are now plenty of berries coming into the market. This recipe by Carrie Floyd at Culinate uses blueberries but Carrie has other suggestions. Just follow the link from the recipe title below. You can use Ayers Creek Farm's cornmeal if you've any at home or you can pick some up at the market. Enjoy!

Lemon Cornmeal Muffins with Berries (by Carrie Floyd, from the Culinate Kitchen collection)

1 cup all-purpose, unbleached flour
1 cup fine cornmeal
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
2 eggs
3/4 cup whole milk
1 3/4 cups fresh blueberries

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare 2 muffin tins by either greasing them or filling them with cupcake liners. Melt the butter and set aside to cool.

In a medium-large bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, salt, and lemon zest. In another bowl or a large measuring cup, whisk together eggs with the melted butter and milk. Add the wet ingredients to the dry, stirring until just combined. Carefully stir in the berries, then divide batter evenly between the muffin cups.

Bake muffins in the middle of the oven for 15 minutes, then check to see if a toothpick inserted into the middle of one of the muffins comes out clean. If muffins are still a little gooey after 15 minutes, bake an additional 2 to 4 minutes. When the muffins are done, remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes before eating.