This Week at the Farmer’s Market

Happy end of the year, friends! I’m sure you’re as exhausted as I am and are looking forward to a quiet meal with good music and good friends. Chicken porridge from Kandy would hit the spot right about now and Frankie is stirring up a pot of tomato basil soup to warm your heart. After the indulgences of the past weeks, a light but filling shredded cabbage salad will be perfect. We’ll also have delicious stick-to-your-ribs meals such as Momma’s hot tamales or Frankie’s plate lunch of oven roasted BBQ ribs and fixins. Chris has promised to fix his fabulous pastalaya and is teaming that with Cajun petit pois and garlic bread! We’ll have fresh veggies and citrus, beef jerky, teacakes, and yard eggs and it WILL be a wonderful day in the neighborhood!

Come celebrate New Year’s Eve morning with us as Tony Greene sings us into the New Year and memories of what we shared this year brings smiles to our faces. We waltzed into 2016 with gorgeous veggies – January brought carrots from John complete with the tops which can be substituted for parsley. Nick introduced Tronchuda kale, a rare heirloom variety that is very tender, kinda like baby spinach and terrific in a salad (even the stems which are nice and crunchy like celery and not at all tough and chewy).

January veggies were soon joined by others throughout the Winter and into the Spring — Swiss chard, spinach and tat soi with colorful piles of carrots and turnips, red cabbage, green onions, broccoli, beets, fennel, kohlrabi, mustards and kale. We were treated to an amazing variety of lettuces including Red Sails, Merlot, Bronze Butterhead, and Ice Queen (a lovely butterhead variety that would hold up nicely under your chicken salad) and hydroponic varieties (Romaine, Red Oak and Green Oak.) And we had the dressings to bring out the best in them from Gina and Spicy Lady and special toppings like Dee’s pickled veggies, Sam’s sprouts or my fermented Veggies with an Attitude.

February turned into April and we welcomed back old friends and the Japanese maples, stag horn fern, bougainvillea, blueberry bushes and more. Alton and Sandra’s tables were bursting into “bloom” with starter plans for the spring garden – tomatoes, herbs, peppers, lettuces…. Citrus and strawberries turned into peaches and blueberries and figs to sweeten us through the summer. Amanda’s fresh fruit popsicles put smiles on young and old alike.

Ever faithful, Angel’s stuffed artichokes were with us each week as was Pam Tessier’s fabulous cuisine. Nun’s kitchen brought us the wonderful dishes of Turkey. Norma Jean was there, too, with walnut pate and muffaletta veggies and delicious quiches. Even though our Korean pancakes are now made by Erica and Nathaniel, you can still see plates of them dotting the landscape each week. Rain or shine, Kombucha Girl saw us through with healthy living beverages. Our artisan bakers didn’t fail us and we enjoyed breads and muffins and cookies all year long. Bouquets of beauty drifted from Nancy’s gardens to brighten our days.

And then, it was Fall again and all the fabulous veggies it brought to our tables. Throughout the year, we enjoyed the benefits of jams and jellies from Althee and Robin — always checking to see if there was a new flavor added.  You could always count on Jubilee Farms meats and James’ chickens and fresh yard eggs!

We weathered the rains and the toll it took on our veggies and eggs and rejoiced when Kevin showed up with Blood River honey. The gazebo has never been the same since we lost the grand Old Duchess oak to a winter storm, but we are still here each Wednesday and each Saturday.

Do you recall the Saturdays when the gazebo was bursting with melody and tables were groaning with the produce of the season? And you couldn’t wait to discover what was new and delicious and thankful for old favorites? Enjoying the day, sipping your coffee or fresh juice while you strolled through the grounds? Oh what a year we have had! Thank you for joining us and may you be blessed and prosperous in 2017!

Lots of love,

Charlene LeJeune

Abundant Life Kitchen

The Covington Farmers’ Market is open each Wednesday, rain or shine, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Covington Trailhead, 419 N. New Hampshire and every Saturday from 8a.m. to 12p.m. on the side lawn of the Covington Police Station, 609 N. Columbia St. Call (985) 892-1873 for information or visit covingtonfarmersmarket.org