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Local Events Shop Local This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Greetings, friends! I know it’s hard to believe it hasn’t even been a week since the fierce rains wrecked havoc on St. Tammany and the surrounding parishes. Many of you are still reeling from the damage done and today certainly is not a happy Tuesday. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you.

Wednesday will dawn and the Farmers’ Market Band will gather in the gazebo spinning lively tunes to brighten your lunch. Our vendors have prepared many delicious choices to entice you, such as Kandy’s fabulous traditional egg rolls (plus special dipping sauce). Nanette is preparing white bean and kale soup to soothe the soul. Chomper’s BBQ will serve green beans and Jeff’s secret recipe cornbread with his pulled pork. Hopefully, some of Natalie’s strawberry crop survived the deluge; Mr. Houston’s veggies did fare well since he was at the market last Saturday. If you need a little more balm for the soul (or are just in need of great dessert), a spoon of Frankie’s old fashioned banana pudding will put a smile on your face. What the heck! Go on and eat the whole thing. Just thinking of it makes me feel better already.

Keith & Nealy Frentz displaying the Lola Deux Food Truck, which will be at the Covington Farmer's Market this Saturday

Keith & Nealy Frentz displaying the Lola Deux Food Truck, which will be at the Covington Farmer’s Market this Saturday

The days will soon blossom into Saturday and we will be blessed with the delightful tunes of the Lucky Dogs floating from the gazebo. So grab your coffee and celebrate St. Paddy’s Day with us. The Lola Deux food truck will pull up to the curb at Columbia Street and, if we are lucky, they will serve ultimate St. Paddy’s Day meal – Corned Beef and Cabbage. If not, we will all still enjoy those incredible Parmesan white truffle fries.

Bear Creek Road has Casatiello Bread for an early Easter celebration, complete with a bright red Easter egg in the center. Nick has gorgeous greens – Swiss Chard, Tronchuda kale, baby carrots, baby kale leaves, fresh parsley, Siberian kale and more. Mr. Houston’s crop also managed to pull through with red sails lettuce, turnips, green onions, carrots, and Brussels sprouts. Sam’s table is “sprouting” with a pea mix, alfalfa and clover sprouts. Norma Jean delighted us with an amazing assortment of quiches – beautiful and tasty!

Woke up with a scratchy throat? No worries. The Kombucha Girl has her Daily Defender available. Daily Defender is a blend of aged kombucha, raw cider vinegar infused with garlic, lemon, ginger, and cayenne, and sweetened with local honey.

Bear Creek Road March Pie of the Month: Raspberry Cream Danish Pie with Lemon and White Chocolate

Bear Creek Road March Pie of the Month: Raspberry Cream Danish Pie with Lemon and White Chocolate

Trudy is back at the Saturday market with her famous Japanese Maples. She also brought along several Lily of the Valley shrubs bursting with dainty little white flowers plus an assortment of succulents that seem to thrive on neglect (my kind of plant). I think Spring is in the air!

Rain or shine, the Covington Farmers’ Market is open and we’ll be wearing our brightest smiles with great tunes drifting from the gazebo, plenty of good things spread out on the tables, and a sprinkling of laughter on the breeze. You really weren’t thinking of sleeping in, were you?

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Healthy Living Local Events Local News Shop Local This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Covington Farmers Market Wellness DayHappy Tuesday, friends! Tomorrow morning may not bring sunshine and blue skies but it will bring lots of great food and music. Be sure to join us and choose from Chomper’s pulled pork & fixins or Kandy’s shredded chicken and cabbage salad. Perhaps you’re thinking of a bowl of Nanette’s carrot ginger soup and a chicken salad wrap and or perhaps you just can’t make a decision. No worries! Get several dishes – after all, there’s dinner tonight, lunch for Thursday……or Friday…..or snack time….

Make plans to join us on Saturday when the magical tunes of Cat and Eddie Arnold will sally forth from the gazebo spreading cheer throughout the market. I got little mixed up last week on the food demo but by the looks of the lines, no one minded having Springs of Life in the demo tent. BUUTTT! Wildcrafters will be here this week to demo their wonderfully fresh juices for our Wellness Fair. Grab your coffee and take some time to visit the wellness vendors set up along Columbia Street in front of the Police Department. There is a large variety of health and fitness gurus there with lots of useful information.

Local juice bar Wildcrafter will be at the market this Saturday!

Local juice bar Wildcrafter will be at the market this Saturday!

When you think of a wellness fair and a farmers’ market, your first thought usually turns to the veggies. Our market sure has lots of vegetables from which to choose and they are absolutely gorgeous. But this market has a LOT of healthy going for it. You’ll find Amanda’s fresh juices and delicious popsicles made from the finest fruits and vegetables and Simply Pure’s cold pressed juices hard to beat.

Then there’s a sparkling taste of Susan’s kombucha flavors with the added benefits of boosting your immune system and aiding digestion. My fermented veggies are known to fight off unfriendly microbes, alkalize the body, and cleanse the colon. Raw honey (especially from Blood River) has anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal properties and is a powerful antioxidant.

Farmhouse Dairy and Mauthe’s Progress Milk Barn offer milk and cheese from pasture raised animals as are the meats from Jubilee Farms and James. The fresh eggs were picked from a chicken coop and not a chicken cage. Read the ingredients list on your packaged breads and compare with the ingredients of the breads (and even the cookies) from our artisan bakers. And there’s so much more.

So make your stroll around the market a leisurely one. Talk to our vendors, both the regulars and the wellness vendors too. That way, you won’t miss out on all the wonderful things the Covington Farmers’ Market has for you. See ya there.

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Local Events Shop Local This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Snappy happy Tuesday, friends! What a day! Now, don’t you worry about tomorrow. I’ve ordered sunshine and blue skies but I think I’ll be overruled on my request for temperatures in the 70s. No matter; we’ll still be at the Covington Trailhead with lots of great food and music. Nanette says she’s preparing her creamy wild rice and mushroom chowder that is so wonderful when the temps are a wee bit chilled. Kandy will not be there, but Chomper’s will offer a choice of smoked sausage po-boys or pulled pork. Frankie’s peach cobbler is on the menu again. Not sure whether or not we’ll have strawberries tomorrow with the weather I’m seeing outside the window at this moment. I know I’d have a hard time surviving out in all this rain and I’m not a sweet li’l berry.

Olga Wilhelmine will be at the Covington Farmer's Market this Saturday

Olga Wilhelmine will be at the Covington Farmer’s Market this Saturday

We’ve got a great Saturday planned as well with Olga Wilhelmine and her jaunty melodies in the gazebo and our faithful Ed Whiteman serving coffee and tea from the pavilion. (Thanks, Ed!) New truck on the block, Old School Eats, will pull up to the curb on Columbia St. and delight us with their deliciosity. They’ll be in the big red school bus; you can’t miss ‘em! Saturday couldn’t be more wonderful – at least until next week!

It’s sad to see not to see Theresa’s Italian cookies at the market but Vincent and Mauricio still have those cute kiddie cookies and balloons available. Hot Tamale Mama is still there, though, with amazing hot tamales, stuffed shells, spinach artichoke dip.… and Johnadelle’s has returned to the market loaded down with fresh strawberries. Slice up a few of those strawberries and add them to your Mauthe’s yogurt or as a topping on one of their divinely luxurious cheesecakes. And then, get another (‘cause you know you’ll have to share.) Probably should get a pound of Coast Roast gourmet coffee (what’s cheesecake without coffee?) Last week, Kevin had a very exotic Yellow Bourbon bean. Not sure how he’s going to top that!

I know the “ladies” have been a little slack on their laying duties but they seem to be back on track and we have plenty of eggs at the market again. Ishmael of Mt. Herman Pork is back with fresh yard eggs and Duroc pork – chops, tenderloin, ribs. Try some ribs on the grill with a glaze of Robin’s Apple Bacon or Blackberry Cabernet pepper jelly.

Tabasco, the Covington Farmers Market mascot Roux-ster

Tabasco, the Covington Farmers Market mascot Roux-ster

I stocked up on a few bottles of Samantha’s elderberry syrup because I’m beginning to see pollen on the trees (and in the cracks of the sidewalks). Then, I spent a few minutes over at Aunt Bee’s soaps sniffing and chatting and sniffing. What lovely bouquets of fragrance Bridgett has created. Get lost in her Vervain & Olive Blossom, a wonderfully clean scent, or the floral Wild Fig and Cassis, and, for the gentlemen, a manly Beau Brummel. Wait. Wait. Just one more whiff.

Just 19 more hours till Wednesday and 4 whole days to Saturday. Set your countdown clocks, your alarm clocks, your biological clocks, whatever clocks you have to. You really don’t want to miss out!

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Local Events Shop Local This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Hi, friends and happy Tuesday! What a lovely day it is today and it looks like we will be blessed with sunshine tomorrow, which is great since we will be equally blessed with great food and great music.  Stop by and enjoy a delicious pulled pork sammy with green beans and cole slaw. Or perhaps you’d prefer a crisp salad of lemongrass chicken, crunchy vegetables, and noodles. Bring home one of Nanette’s chicken salad wraps (by lunchtime tomorrow you’ll be glad you did.) Frankie has old fashioned banana pudding this week and will have her decadent Chocolate Lasagna on Saturday. Mr. Houston has lots of great veggies and fresh yard eggs. Natalie will have fresh strawberries. No need to add anything else; just snip off the tops and enjoy!

LOLA Deux, LOLA Restaurant's food truck will be at the Covington Farmer's Market Saturday

LOLA Deux, LOLA Restaurant’s food truck will be at the Covington Farmer’s Market Saturday

Oh what a day this Saturday will be! Keith and Nealy Frentz and the Lola Deux Food Truck will be parked on Columbia Street and before you know it there will be a long line for those amazing fries. Chris Talley will serenade us from the gazebo so grab your coffee and enjoy the morning with us.

Seek out the lovely ladies from the Master Gardeners’ Club who will be with us every 3rd weekend of the month to answer your gardening questions. These “vege-cators” have lots of great information for the novice and seasoned gardener alike. Then make a beeline over to Alton and Sandra’s tables to get those starter plants.

Norma Jean has a delicious assortment of quiches each Saturday which usually includes the ever-popular Artichoke & Valbreso Cheese quiche. See what’s on “tap” at Earth Milk. With choices like Oat, Almond, Coconut, Hemp Seed, and Cinnamon Oat, Kristen offers a delicious alternative to dairy. Then, turn around and check out the selection of gourmet dog food from Tiger Bait.

Three Cheese and Spinach Polenta Tart from Bear Creek Road

Three Cheese and Spinach Polenta Tart from Bear Creek Road

Since you’re over that way, you should check out the new Three Cheese and Spinach Polenta Tart from Bear Creek Road. Farmhouse Dairy may have some fresh goat cheeses which when delicately draped in Robin’s Blackberry Cabernet pepper jelly make a delightful snack. A slice of Mauthe’s cheddar and a dollop of Robin’s Apple Bacon pepper jelly seated regally atop one of Lena’s toasted bread rounds is a treat not to be missed.

Lots of great food, veggies, and just all around fun…the Covington Farmers’ Market has it all. Our plans include lots of sunshine and blue skies; make sure your plans include joining us.

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Farmers Market Recipes Healthy Living Local Events Local News Non Profit Spotlight Shop Local This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week At The Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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New Venetian Loaves from Bear Creek Road

New Venetian Loaves from Bear Creek Road

Hi, friends and Happy Tuesday! I think we are all enjoying these cooler temps even if it is in the eighties. At least the AC is no longer running full throttle day and night. We have such a lovely day planned for you tomorrow with lively music and nothin’ but blue skies will you see!

As an added bonus, Nanette is making the ultimate in soups for Wednesday – squash and corn chowder! Enjoy that with a chicken salad wrap or just save the wrap for tomorrow. Speaking of soups, Kandy makes light-hearted and tummy-warming Pho which, along with a side of crunchy egg rolls, is a definite take-home-for-supper choice. Or make a wonderful dinner of pulled pork, baked cinnamon apples and cheese grits. It’s too gorgeous outside to cook. This week, Frankie will have more of her incredible peach cobbler and pear cake with buttercream frosting. She’s also fixing fancy crepes topped with Bananas Foster! Better get there early.

Just the anticipation of Saturday morning at the market makes the week seem as though it’s snailing by. This Saturday the gazebo will be filled with sound as We3 floods the market with music. And that’s the only flooding that will happen unless it’s the smiles and laughter raining within our boundaries. So grab a steamy cup of java and get ready for Shah Kinjal. Shah is preparing Vegetarian Punjabi Food for tasting at the Market! I can’t wait; it sounds soooo exotic!

Lots of goings on in the back corner of the market that used to boast our grand old duchess oak. Natalie is back with a table full of large purple eggplant, round zucchini, yellow squash, cucumbers and bell pepper. While you’re back there, check out all the delicious granola breakfast bars that Sacred Earth has to offer – Sun Bar, Summer Love, Winter Serenity, Spring Detox, Coffee Bliss, and Sacred Mother – each lovingly made with organic ingredients. Jennifer (Bear Creek Road) is making spiced pumpkin seeds for your snackin’ pleasure. What, you may ask, is she doing with the rest of the pumpkin? Why, she’s making Pumpkin Honey Beer Bread, of course.

In that area, you’ll also find we have a new vendor, Tasha. In addition to catering and making cakes, Tasha is crafting pralines. I say crafting, because these are not just the traditional pralines that everyone knows and loves (she has those) but peanut butter pralines, coconut pecan pralines, and even a luscious trail mix version. OMGwhiz they’re good!

Lots of doin’s in the produce department as well. Nick is offering a braising mix of baby kale, India green wave mustard, broadleaf mustard, and rapini (broccoli rabb leaves). This greens will change from time to time as the new crops come marching in but for now, try sautéing some mushrooms in a little olive oil and then, just before the mushrooms are done, toss in several handfuls of braising leaves and toss until they are just wilted. YUM! Spicy Lady had a great assortment of seasonings that will only add to the flavor. Persimmons are here and resting comfortably on Greg’s and J.R.’s tables. Bok choi, arugula, lovely radishes are just waiting for their turn in your meal. Greens are really delicious added to soups. It doesn’t take much, just chop ‘em and toss ‘em in the pot.

I noticed Dee (Crescent City Canning) had pickled onions last week and just had to get a jar for my sister. Pickled onions are a favorite for us. I was fortunate to have two of my granddaughters with me this past Saturday. They decided we should get a Korean pancake from Dong to share……..I got a bite (actually, it was 2 whole bites but they were delicious). Next time, I’ll have my bites first. Whether you’re at the Wednesday Market or Saturday’s, a stroll around the market is sure to uncover something tempting and terrific.

Lots of love,

Charlene LeJeune

Abundant Life Kitchen

 

Market Menu for the Covington Farmer's Market at the trailhead - Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Market Menu for the Covington Farmer’s Market at the trailhead – Wednesday, October 7, 2015

 

 

Local Events This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Hi, friends and Happy Tuesday! The weather is going to be wonderful tomorrow, just in time for lunch at the Market. So put your smiles on and meet us over at the Trailhead. Let’s begin with the most important – dessert! Frankie is baking up an unbelievable peach cobbler. Take home her Cinnamon French Toast with maple syrup and pecans for breakfast on Thursday (or Friday). Nanette’s soup of the day is tomato basil and I can see that smile already. Don’t forget to pick up something for the rest of the week. Pulled pork sandwich and fixins for Thursday and a noodle salad with lemongrass chicken for Friday. Of course you could pick up enough pulled pork and fixins for dinner and a sliced turkey wrap for Thursday. OR a couple of soups and turkey wraps for tomorrow’s supper and…well, you get the picture.

Nanette CFM

Nourish by Nanette

Well our Wednesday Covington Farmers’ market vendors are really making a name for themselves in the area. Nanette Shoenwe has also been featured in a Covington Town Talk article. I always knew you guys were special and now the rest of Covington knows!

It was a delightful day last Saturday with cool breezes and sunshine and I will accept nothing less for this coming Saturday, especially since The Lucky Dogs are in the gazebo. So grab your coffee and start your shopping and before you know it Sweet Daddy’s BBQ will be set up and ready to serve tangy dishes from their menu.

Now that the weather is promising cooler days, it’s time to get out in the garden. Alton and Sandra have gotcha covered with lots of great plant starters – Stonehead cabbage, Red Sails lettuce, Chinese cabbage, Brussels sprouts, Swiss chard, Birdseye peppers and a large selection of aromatic herbs. Dennis and Ms. Betty both have fantastic plants to make your patio an oasis.

greensGreens are popping up more and more with mustard greens on Mr. Houston’s table, bok choi, baby kale and arugula. J.R. should have plenty ore of those lovely green eggplant and I’m anxious to see more hot peppers on Nick’s table. Eddie has habanero, jalapeño, and cayenne peppers, butternut squash and more.

Lena is hoping to have more of her splendid corn grits this week. I love to serve them with any leftover pulled pork I have or topped with shrimp barbecued with my Shrimp on the Barbie seasoning. Makes a very quick, convenient and delicious supper. She also has her own special granola mix and amazing breads with freshly ground flour.

Baked goods from Windfield Farms bakery

Baked goods from Windfield Farms bakery

At Windfield Farms, Suzie’s counter is filled with delicious artisan breads. She always has a French batard, baguettes, and her secret formula health bread plus a different savory bread each week. You’ll also find magnificent muffins – blueberry, cranberry, chocolate and Glorious Morning (a delightful mix of carrot, apple, raisin and walnut)!

So much to discover and enjoy. Of course, you’ll never discover everything that’s new and tasty without being here. You must come and enjoy the adventure with us. We’ve ordered beautiful weather for you.

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Healthy Living Local Events Shop Local This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Keith & Nealy Frentz displaying the Lola Deux Food Truck, which will be at the Covington Farmer's Market this Saturday

Keith & Nealy Frentz displaying the Lola Deux Food Truck, which will be at the Covington Farmer’s Market this Saturday

Hi, friends! Well, this is surely a Tuesday that will put the happy into your week! Lovely blue skies dotted with soft white clouds….yep! the perfect I-need-a-nap-in-the-hammock kind of day. I’m working on the same kind of day for tomorrow as well. But if you can’t have that hammock, come on out to the Covington Farmers’ Market and pull up a chair at a table under the pavilion where you can bask in the comforting aroma of good food or closer to the gazebo where sweet music will massage your stress away. Food choices range from Kandy’s Noodle Salad or traditional crunchy egg rolls to Nanette’s tantalizing potato leek soup & chicken salad wraps or Jeff’s taste-tempting pulled pork and baked beans are waiting for you to enjoy. Finish with one of Frankie’s desserts. She’ll have old-fashioned banana pudding this week.

Oh, BTW. There’s a wonderful article about Kandy and Joe on nola.com’s Covington Town Talk – Check it out here. We are sooooo proud of you guys!

Gina Forsyth Old Feed Store Music SeriesCome Saturday morning, we’ll be setting up the tents and the goodies and the blue skies. Get out early (otherwise you’ll miss out on the veggies), grab your coffee and take a stroll around the market while you await melodic tunes of Gina Forsyth coming from the gazebo. Then get ready because it is the third week of the month and that means – Lola Deux! Try to save a few of those incredible Parmesan fries; they are excellent added to scrambled eggs.

Just because Labor Day has passed, doesn’t mean that grilling season is over. NO way!  Remember you can grill much more than chicken and burgers – eggplant, okra, sweet potatoes (Nick). I suppose you’d have to have a special pan but grilled green beans (Bardwell’s) would be really great. Put them to the back of the pit and let them slow roast then lightly coat with one of Chomper’s perfect BBQ sauces. Or leave them plain and dip into Nanette’s Green Goddess dressing.

I found a recipe online for roasted okra so that must mean you can grill them too. To remove the slime, place in a bowl and pour vinegar on them, tossing gently to coat. Let stand for 30 minutes, then drain and rinse well. Brush with one of Spicy Lady’s seasoned oils and pop ‘em on the grill. Place a small bowl of Bechac’s Roasted Garlic and Tomato dressing close by for dipping. Mmmmm! Mmmmm! Sweet potatoes on the grill, wrapped in foil, and slow cooked until tender, then topped with a little of Spicy Lady’s Spiced Cake seasoning and Mauthe’s butter. Or go savory and sprinkle with her Bangkok seasoning. Or generously drizzled with Bechac’s Bleu Cheese dressing. Ooooh, yeah! I love sweet potatoes any ole way!

Jubilee Farms sausage is always wonderful on the grill but for the next two weeks they will have smoked sausage. The heck with the grill, throw ‘em in some beans/peas like those Purple Hull Peas I’ve seen at Bartlett Farms. Liz and Paul will also have bacon – what a way to dress up your scrambled eggs and Parmesan fries!

Brown Butter Orange Tart from Bear Creek Road's Facebook page

Brown Butter Orange Tart from Bear Creek Road’s Facebook page

Bear Creek Road has two lovely new tarts – Brown Butter Orange and Potato Garlic & Rosemary. OMG, do these look spectacular! Nanette has rolled out a fabulous new munchie – NutNola – crunchy and chewy little bits of fruit and nuts. Yum! Her Pattie of the Week is Beet Mushroom “Burger” with Garlic Aioli. Check out the apple and almond butter calzones at Betty Rue – all that lusciousness rolled up in a gluten free pastry. Obviously, the Covington Farmers’ Market is the place you need to be. See ya there!

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Local Events This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Tabasco, the Covington Farmers Market mascot Roux-ster

Tabasco, the Covington Farmers Market mascot Roux-ster

Hi, friends and Happy Tuesday! I hope you enjoyed your Labor Day holiday! I did. It’s always nice to have a holiday but then….. it’s time to get back to work. But work doesn’t have to be dreary especially on Wednesdays when you can enjoy a delightful lunch and great music at the Covington Farmers’ Market. Jeff’s fixing baked beans this week to go with his pulled pork. Talk with him about ordering a meal for your Saints First Official Game of the Season party. For that matter, talk with all our Wednesday vendors to see if they have a catering menu for this event. It’s a great idea even if you’re only gonna watch a movie. Big Branch may not have anything worth snacking on but he’s great on the cleanup! Hey! Here’s a thought… why not get a lunch while you’re there like a turkey salad wrap from Nanette or shrimp and cream cheese rolls from Kandi. It’s a radical concept but worth investigating especially when Frankie is baking Almond Puff Pastry Bear Claws and Cinnamon Rolls for dessert.

Keenan Knight

Keenan Knight will perform for the Saturday market

Saturday will follow at its usual pace with all its sunshine and weekend fun. Keenan Knight will be making magic in the gazebo and Sam’s Sprouts will be in the demo tent showcasing all his fine products. Try the coconut water; it’s really tasty and refreshing.

As I mentioned the Saints First Official Game of the Season is this Sunday – are you prepared?  Do you have snacks? We do!!! Susie has the most delightful lemon squares and raspberry crumble which can be cut in fourths, making perfect bite-sized finger tasters. Bear Creek’s luscious little macaroons in pistachio, lavender, raspberry, and grand marnier are a taste sensation! Hot Tamale Mama’s sensational spinach artichoke dip is also a great snacking treat with crackers or chips. Stroll around the market for an assortment of fine veggies. Veggies always make great dippers. Cheryl (Spicy Lady) has some wonderful seasonings that you can easily turn into dips with a little sour cream from Mauthe’s. Lena’s toasted bread rounds are the perfect “chip” for Farmhouse Dairy chèvre covered with Robin’s Rocking Pepper Jelly – pick a flavor, they are all delish! Chips and salsa from Spanish R Us are a must have and  a dish of pickled veggies are a crunchy delight. Dee has a great selection to choose a favorite from.

Make sure you grab some treats for your pets too from Tiger Bait Raw Whole Food for Pets!

Make sure you grab some treats for your pets too from Tiger Bait Raw Whole Food for Pets!

I missed out on Nanette’s Lemon Lentil soup on Wednesday and got lucky – she had some on Saturday. Needless to say, I enjoyed a bowl of lemon lentil soup along with slice or two of Bear Creek’s Guiness bread (it was a small bowl sine #3 granddaughter got a whiff and wanted to share. Good thing I love her!) We have so may lovely artisan breads at the market which are just aching to enjoy your soup with you. I don’t think it matters what kind of soup is on the menu, bread makes it wonderful. Bread is also really nice sliced and topped with a spoon or two of Nur’s eggplant and tomato dip and popped into the oven for snacking heaven. Her hummus (in regular, cilantro, red pepper, and chipotle) is also a great snacking treat with crackers, chips or veggies. Nur suggests adding hummus instead of mayo to your potato or egg salad for a great change of pace.

With all the selection available at the market, it will be hard to choose. You’ll probably have to get more than one. Take your time…no one’s rushing you.

Lots of love,
Charlene LeJeune
Abundant Life Kitchen

P.S. You’ll find a terrific story about Covington at seethegood.com!

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Local Events This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Wed Farmers Market signGood afternoon, friends, and happy, happy Tuesday! Yes, it really is Tuesday – already. But that only means that tomorrow is Market Day and our vendors are quite busy baking and cooking, veggie picking and soap-making. Earl is even out there playing with the bees — very carefully, of course.

Cheese grits, cole slaw, and green beans will accompany Jeff’s pulled pork this week. Sliced turkey wraps are on Nanette’s menu, along with a tasty lemon lentil soup. Mmmmmm! I’ll add Kandi’s shredded cabbage with chicken to my lunch list (I like to make sure I’m covered for the week) and then dive into dessert. Frankie is making a raspberry cream cheese pastry that has my mouth watering already. I’ll probably also need a couple of bottles of Samantha’s elderberry syrup; I think my allergies have allergies.

Cassie Krebs will be playing music at the Covington Farmer's Market this Saturday

Cassie Krebs will be playing music at the Covington Farmer’s Market this Saturday

Before you know it, Saturday will arrive along with Isabella’s Pizzaria and the official traveling pizza oven. What a lovely treat for this Labor Day weekend! And that’s not all. Cassie Krebs will be in the gazebo singing and playing and adding a bright note to our Labor Day celebration. You’re gonna love it!

Believe it or not, the temperatures have been slowly lowering which means you can get out in the garden more and start planting some of the gorgeous plants our vendors have available. Check out Alton’s selection of fine herbs which seem to do well no matter what the weather is like. In the next few weeks, he’ll have more vegetable starts for your fall garden. isabellaslogo(No worries, I’ll keep you updated.) Stone Creek Nurseries still has blueberry bushes ready for planting. Dennis has fig trees and ornamental bushes and I noticed a stunning banana plant (Rojo Banana) with dark striped leaves. Hmmm, I wonder if it produces striped bananas? Wouldn’t that be a conversation starter!

Now, if you’re still not ready to get outside in the garden, Miss Betty has a few extraordinary houseplants that will create a zen-like atmosphere in any room. One notable plant, the Foxtail Fern, has emerald green fronds that are fluffy and tail-like in appearance. But what makes it even more lovely are the thousands of miniature white blossoms that fashioned an even fluffier “tail.” If you don’t feel like watering, a bouquet of Nancy’s wildflowers really perk up a room. Of course, a little water when you put them in the vase will make them last a LOT longer. An even easier way to bring that garden inside is with Aunt Bee’s homemade soaps and fragrances like Orange Patchouli, Rosemary Lavender (I love those two scents together) and Tomato Leaf which has an aroma that is delicate and beautiful but nothing like a tomato.

Chomper's Original BBQWhat would a Labor Day celebration be without a barbecue? Chomper’s has fabulous sauces made especially for the grill. Gina’s Roasted Garlic and Tomato dressing makes a wonderful marinade or dipping sauce. There’s chicken from James, shrimp from Mr. Two, sausage from Jubilee Farms, and eggplant, zucchini, and squash from our produce vendors that are always grilling favorites. While you’re out there manning the pit, you’ll need a few snacks so check out Dee’s Crescent City Pickles or chips, dip, and salsa from Spanish R Us. You can sleep in on Monday.

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Healthy Living Local Events Shop Local This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Covington Farmers Market picHowdy, friends! Great news! I checked the weather channel and it appears there is a glorious day of sunshine for Market Day tomorrow. We’ve got lots of great food for you to enjoy so come out and join us. Kandi and Joe will be back tomorrow for all of you who have been craving their crunchy shrimp and cream cheese rolls. Take a container of Nanette’s white bean and kale soup back to work to counteract off those icy offices – not to mention put a smile on your face. Jeff’s pulled pork, mac n cheese, and cole slaw will make your day…or your evening. And if you have leftover pork (or get enough to make sure you do) Eddie and Mr. Houston both have some great squashes that would love to be stuffed. Not to be outdone, Frankie is teasing me with temptations of the raspberry cream cheese pinwheel pastries she plans to have tomorrow.

Alex Owens and John Eubanks will provide our musical entertainment on Saturday in the gazebo that used to be under the oak tree. That’s right. The old oak tree, the regal guardian of the Farmers’ Market and the Police Department, has been felled. I wasn’t there for the “event” but I hope there was some sort of acknowledgement for its life of service. We have certainly enjoyed the shade and comfort provided by this faithful giant. So as you grab your coffee, raise a toast to the fallen and prepare to commemorate events that took place here 10 years ago that no one wants to celebrate. But celebrate we should because none of us were untouched by Katrina’s wrath, but together we have rebuilt our city and helped to heal those scars. With that in mind, we offer a New Orleans favorite with a twist – Pastalaya – prepared by our very own J.R. Bardwell. Thanks, J.R.!

Now, even though it’s almost too hot for anything but swimming, our produce vendors still have a lovely selection of veggies. Evangeline sweet potatoes lined Nick’s tables with hot peppers, heirloom eggplant, okra and lemongrass filling in the spaces. On Mr. Houston’s table, there are bell peppers, Cumshaw squash, okra, eggplant and great white and yellow stuffing squashes. Eddie’s tables are laden with okra, banana peppers, squash, and eggplant (and, if you’re lucky, Karen made some cookies.)

Now over in the Bardwell’s “camp”, you’ll find tomatoes, hot and sweet peppers, potatoes, and green beans. And Nancy tells me the Bartletts will be back with okra, red potatoes, and gorgeous sunflowers. I love to see those smiling blooms across the market from me.

If you haven’t tried any of Enten Farms’ Meaux Mustard, I have it on good authority that Blueberry Meaux Mustard  makes an amazing rub for chicken or pork tenderloin. That sounds soooo delish. Check out the fare at Norma Jean’s. She has a creamy jalapeño cheese dip that my friends gave a high thumbs-up. You’ll also find her dish of the month – a spinach wrap spread with garlic mayo then filled with fresh spinach, avocado, boiled egg, and tomato. So, why don’t you come and spend the morning with us. It will definitely put another smile on your face.

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Farmers Market Recipes This Week at the Farmer's Market

Farmer’s Market Recipe: Eggplant Okra Creole

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Inspired by fresh local ingredients in season at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Seared eggplant and corn add a twist to this classic creole okra dish – grab them all fresh at the farmer’s market!

eggplant-harvest1 bunch of small eggplants, cubed with skins

extra virgin olive oil

Salt & pepper

1 pint of okra, sliced in ¼ in rounds

4 creole tomatoes, or pint of cherry tom., chopped

1 ear of corn, shucked, de-kernelled

okra¼ cup celery, chopped

1 bay leaf

½ large onion, chopped

2 toes of garlic, minced

2 tsp each dried basil, parsley, sea salt

1 tsp (or more to taste) cayenne pepper

Put the cubed eggplant in a colander and sprinkle heavily with salt. Allow to drain for at least 30 min. Strain slightly, rinse and pat dry.

Meanwhile, in a medium soup pot, add the okra, tomatoes, corn, celery & bay leaf to a ½ cup of water and cook covered on medium low.

In a large sauce pan, heat 2 tbs of oil. Add in the eggplant slowly and sear to a golden brown on all sides. Add in the onions, garlic & spices. Cover and let cook for a few minutes. Add this to the okra and tomatoes in the soup pot. Raise the temperature to medium and cover, Cook for about 10 more minutes. A little more water may need to be added. Can be served by itself or over rice. Enjoy!

Local Events This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Wed Farmers Market signHappy Tuesday, friends! I’m looking forward to a lovely day at the market tomorrow. Come by for a delicious lunch, fresh veggies, sweets and treats. Kandi and Joe’s pan seared salmon salad and jasmine tea will make you smile. Frankie is preparing homemade pound cake with fresh fruit topping. Slide through lunch with Jeff’s pulled pork or chicken salad sliders. And, there’s always a scandalously good Mediterranean salad with pita bread from Nanette to tempt you. Earl’s back with raw honey too!

Start off Saturday early with a cup of coffee! We’ll have Zac Maris in the gazebo, so make yourselves at home and stay a while. Nealy and Keith Frentz will drive their food truck, Lola Deux, to the Market and you know what that means! Parmesan fries! OK…deep breaths…you still have 4 more days.

Keith & Nealy Frentz displaying the Lola Deux Food Truck, which will be at the Covington Farmer's Market this Saturday

Keith & Nealy Frentz displaying the Lola Deux Food Truck, which will be at the Covington Farmer’s Market this Saturday

There was the loveliest scent of basil wafting from Norma’s tent last week and, sure enough, she has fresh basil – so great on pizzas or salads. A spread of skordalia (Vincent & Mauricio) on a slice of fresh market bread (Lena, Susie, Crystal) would be right tasty with a chiffonade of fresh basil on top.

Hot peppers have been sneaking onto Nick’s table and will be multiplying over the next few weeks. Right now he has goat’s horn, lemon drop, white habanero, and yellow cayenne. He also has brightly colored sweet peppers – purple, yellow, orange, red, and even green. Check out Spicy Lady’s smorgasbord of flavor and you’re sure to find something that will brighten up whatever you’re cooking – whether it be vegetables or meats.

Okra from Grow.Farm

Okra from Grow.Farm

The Bardwells have quite the spread of vegetables – green beans, red potatoes, okra, eggplant – but you have to get there early; they’ve been selling out before 9:30.  The same at Mr. Houston’s table – butternut squash, yellow squash and zucchini, eggplant, and cucumbers go pretty fast as this time of year. Eddie has also been selling out pretty early even with a large offering of banana peppers, okra, eggplant, and some figs…hmmm. I’m going to have to find a few recipes.

Blood River Honey Kevin tells me he will have buckwheat honey this week and Coast Roast Kevin will be back after welcoming his new arrival with freshly roasted coffee. Unfortunately, I will not be at the market this Saturday so I will miss out on all the wonderful things to be had. But you can enjoy your Saturday filled with wonderful music and great friends and the best ever foods.

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Local Events Shop Local This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Wed Farmers Market signWhat a lovely Tuesday! We’re enjoying another gorgeous day today and Wednesday is looking very inviting. So come on out…enjoy a magnificent lunch…delight in the breezes …music and veggies await you. Jeff says he will have those wonderful jalapeño poppers on the menu this week and Nanette’s ready for tomorrow with black bean soup and chicken salad wraps. Kandi will be there will those amazing salads and crispy egg rolls and jasmine tea. Frankie is preparing her fabulous blueberry lemonade and let’s not even mention the chocolate raspberry cake… But that’s not all, Mr. Houston and Eddie will be there with fresh veggies and the scent of Big Branch soaps will freshen your day.

olgacartoonRaise your hand if you were at the market last Saturday. Didn’t you just love the frosty temperatures and the crispy breezes that just lasted all morning long???? I can’t promise the same thing of this weekend, but I can promise that we’re gonna have a great time! I can promise the snappy tunes of Olga Wilhelmine will dance out of the gazebo to brighten your morning. You thought that was the best part, right? Not a chance! Rick and Maryann Haase (devoted Farmers’ Market friends) have volunteered to roast up some hot dogs in the cooking tent. So, I hope you didn’t make plans to go somewhere else.

August is National Goat Cheese Month so here are a couple of ideas to enjoy the goodness of goat cheese. First, stop by Farmhouse Dairy and choose one of their chevres. Then, head on over to the Clecklers for some peaches. You’ll also need some Blood River honey or Peach Bourbon Pepper Jelly (Robin) or both and some granola. Cut your peaches in half, add a lovely scoop of chèvre, drizzle with honey and sprinkle with nuts or granola (Nanette, Susie, Lena). For a spicy change, add a small dollop of Peach Bourbon pepper jelly. (This really is just toooo easy for words.) The rest of that granola will make a nice crunchy topping for Mauthe’s yogurt. Yuummmm!

Farmhouse Dairy at the Covington Farmer's Market

Farmhouse Dairy at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Or, try a refreshing salad with large chunks of watermelon (Greg Miller), quartered figs (I think Greg, Nick, and John still have some), a few blueberries (Justin may not have any more), crumble some goat cheese and chiffonade of fresh mint leaves (Alton) on top. You don’t even need salad dressing.

While you’re at Alton’s trying to decide between regular mint, chocolate mint, or orange mint, check out the starter plants he has for fall planting – in particular, the heat resistant tomato plants.

Black bottom chicory pie is back on the table at Bear Creek Road. Yes, I did pick one up and, yes, I did get lost in the creamy chocolatelyness and, yes, I almost got lost in the homemade whipped topping but I caught sight of the peach ginger buckle…I won’t go into details. Did I mention that next week, Jennifer will have a new savory pie – mushroom Parmesan with polenta crust.

Tired of plain old roasted veggies? Try rubbing them with Vincent and Mauricio’s skordalia before roasting or grilling. Top with pieces of Gina’s new beef jerky. Wonderful flavors of mesquite, sweet hardwood, teriyaki, and pepperoni will add an exciting new taste to your veggies. Who knows? The kids may even like ‘em. What can I say? There’s always something new and wonderful awaiting you. And we’ll be here as well with…

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Healthy Living Local Events This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Chef Robert Vasquez will provide the food demo this Saturday with Jubilee Farms

Chef Robert Vasquez of Opal Basil will provide the food demo this Saturday with Jubilee Farms

Hi, friends, July is quickly fading and August is arriving on Saturday and the kiddies are getting ready to return to school. No matter, after all the market goes on regardless of the day, the month, or the weather. So, get your tasty buds ready for some incredibly delicious food and meet us at the market.

Kandi is offering several lovely salads that are summer perfect. Jeff is preparing smoked chicken salad sliders and Nanette has sliced turkey and also a crunchy vegetable wrap for us tomorrow. And, there’s music and dessert and fresh veggies and dessert so why would you go anywhere else?

Jimmy Robinson will play at the Covington Farmer's Market Saturday

Jimmy Robinson will play at the Covington Farmer’s Market Saturday

Saturday will start with a bang as Jimmy Robinson strums out a little bluesy, a little folksy, some classical, even a little jazz from the gazebo. Then get ready for amazing as Chef Robert Vasquez of Opal Basil and Vive Foods in Mandeville, teams up with Jubilee Farm for a Farmers’ Market tailgate party. This is a day you won’t soon forget!

We still have lots of great veggies but you have to get here early. Last week, mostly everything was gone by 10 am! But, don’t fret. We’ve still have lots and lots of wonderful if you get here later. Try some of our prepared dishes, such as Angel’s bountifully stuffed artichokes. Hot Tamale Mama has a new dish – Mushrooms in Parmesan Cream with crawfish ad andouille sausage. Oh my! Just makes want to dive right in, doesn’t it? Norma Jean always has some delightfully different quiches to try like her deliciously flavorful Southwest quiche. Nanette has several sauce starters just waiting for your cooked chicken or meatballs or shrimp or chunky vegetables – just vary the ingredients for a unique dish every time.

Well, I know this is short but I’m running behind schedule today. But don’t let that stop you from coming out to explore on your own. The tastes are fantastic; the flavors abundant and he smiles are everywhere. How many more reasons do you need to be at the market each week?

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Local Events This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Toasty Tuesday to you, friends! Boy, the weeks are absolutely flying by; school will be back in session before you know it. Not that that has anything to do with the Covington Farmers’ Market, ‘cause we are here rain or shine, July or December, and we have lots of good meals and treats for you. Check out the attached menu and plan ahead.

Jerry Hess will play in the gazebo Saturday

Jerry Hess will play in the gazebo Saturday

Bright and early Saturday (cause that’s when the veggie selection is best) grab your iced latte from Coast Roast and get your veggies while the gettin’s good. The delightful music of Jerry Hess will be drifting up through the leaves of the old oak tree (what’s left of them) and there will be merriment in the air. A market first – it’s Vendor Demo Day – a time for our vendors to showcase their product.

So last Saturday I had this idea that I would do a goodie letter featuring all the wonderful goodies from our market. This would require intensive research.  I hope you all appreciate the things I have to suffer through on your behalf. (I know, I know…I couldn’t even type it with a straight face.) Well, I needed a starting point and Teresa’s Italian is a great place to start. Whether it’s Teresa’s biscotti or Lena’s, I am a big fan. I love a great cup of coffee and a hefty package of biscotti for dippin’. It’s kind of a Calgon moment for me without the bathwater. Check out Teresa’s mini mixed bags of cookies. Not mentioning any names but praline, lemon crunch and collocate are involved. May as well get 2 bags; friends love them too!

Windfield Farms

Windfield Farms

When I got to Windfield Farms, I noticed that Suzie had the grandkiddies with her. Who else would I ask for a reference (like I actually needed guidance)? They proceeded to point out just about everything on the table and I have to admit to getting lost in the Ooey Gooeys, the Fuddy Duddies, and the lemon bars – sweet creamy squares of lemony goodness – and the raspberry crumble, and the pecan squares. (I don’t know about you but I need a minute).

Next, I travelled to Frankie’s table with her incredible mini fruit pies and crunchy nut brittle. Frankie’s brittle is unlike that hard, chunky, tooth-crackin’ stuff that passes for candy. This is delicate and nutty and absolutely delicious. Then she tells me what her special is for this Saturday (and Wednesday too) – peaches and cream cake and cream cheese icing!!! I think I need another birthday.  After that, it’s over to Althee’s for some blackberry jelly. Technically, this isn’t considered a “goodie” but who hasn’t gone in for a spoon of jelly when you just need a little sweet and Mr. Wonderful ate all the cookies.

I mentioned Lena’s biscotti before which is lovingly made from whole grains and is delicious even without the coffee (but where’s the fun in that?). She also makes an amazing cinnamon roll and toasted bread rounds. I hear ya, but don’t discount the tasty goodness of a buttery, crunchy slice on which to spread Sam’s chocolate sprouted almond butter.

It’s very difficult for me most Saturdays, setting up shop right across from Lena and right next to Betty Rue. Those luscious grain free brownies just scream for a bite, or maybe it’s the chocolate mint cookies, or the peanut butter chocolate chip or the blueberry muffins – it’s hard to tell which one yells the loudest. I’d tell you that I don’t listen but you wouldn’t believe me. The cacophony continues from the Spicy Lady’s table where resides creamy, extra chocolatey bites of incredible that have you satisfied and calling for more at the same time.

I’m also conveniently located between Stephanie’s hand-cranked snow cones and Amanda’s fruity Popsicles. What wonderful place to be! What better on these toasty summer days than a refreshing cup of shaved ice with sweet syrup poured over the top? Some would argue that one of Amanda’s Popsicles is far better but most would have a hard decision to make (unless you opt for both). Fortunately, Bear Creek is a little further down from me but not far enough that I haven’t been lured by the exotic creations Jennifer has to offer. This past Saturday (and probably next as well) she built a gorgeous tart generously topped with peaches and cherries and all manner of sweetness that you could very easily get lost in. You’ll also find a box of special creation candies – lemon meringue fudge; coffee-flavored, chocolate covered marshmallows; milk caramels; a chocolate mint; and caramelized orange rind covered in chocolate. I think I need a cold shower.

Of course, I had to stop by Robin’s pepper jellies cause there’s always a wonderful new taste adventure  (like pineapple rum) and I wasn’t disappointed. A little Mauthe’s cream cheese topped with a smidgen  of pepper jelly on a toasted cracker just hits the spot. I also don’t feel like I’ve cheated on my “diet” because everyone knows that the capsaicin in the jelly burns off any calories that you’ve consumed.

Whether you’re here for the veggies or the goodies or the gorgeous plants, you won’t find a better place to be than the Covington Farmers’ Market. See ya there!

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Healthy Living Local Events This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Keith & Nealy Frentz displaying the Lola Deux Food Truck, which will be at the Covington Farmer's Market this Saturday

Keith & Nealy Frentz displaying the Lola Deux Food Truck, which will be at the Covington Farmer’s Market this Saturday

Whadda ya know, friends, it’s Tuesday again! What a lovely day we’re having today and I know you’re all ready for another sensational week at the market. Our vendors are all ready too! Come and indulge in a Wednesday lunch filled with great food, terrific music, and gentle breezes. Enjoy a side of broccoli salad with your pulled pork today. Maybe you’ll be in the mood for Kandi’s noodle salad with lemongrass chicken or a cup of Nanette’s potato leek soup with your chicken salad wrap. Frankie’s serving taste-tempting mini fruit pies this week. If you miss them on Saturday, you can always get your non-toxic cleaning supplies on Wednesday.

Daniele Spadavecchia will be playing at the Covington Farmers Market this Saturday (dsjazz.com)

Daniele Spadavecchia will be playing at the Covington Farmers Market this Saturday (dsjazz.com)

Daniele Spadavecchia will usher in our Saturday morning with wonderful melodies sashaying from the gazebo. And if that isn’t enough to fire you up, Lola Deux will be firing up the food truck where they will dispense armloads of Parmesan fries to adoring fans! I know…I know…I’ll give you a minute. So grab your coffee and one of Suzie’s orange scones and settle in. You don’t want to miss this!

Hopefully, you haven’t missed the figs that have been stationed at various tables. I bought some last Saturday to make fig preserves for Mr. Wonderful ‘cause I know how much he enjoys them. Slice them or quarter them and serve with Farmhouse Dairy fresh chèvre for a very fancy appetizer and maybe add a sparkling bottle of Serendipity Blanc du Bois and a lovely loaf from Lena, Suzie, or Crystal.

It’s amazing what just a stroll around the market will uncover. Emily has a variety of healthy broths for you – beef, chicken, vegetable, goose/turkey and maybe even some fish and crawfish left. She also has some excellent suggestions for what do do with your broth. Reduce it to make sauces and gravies. Use broth instead of water to make rice or quinoa. Drink it hot, full strength in a mug with a sprinkling of salt. I know you think that’s crazy in the middle of summer but some of those office buildings can be pretty cold.

Bear Creek Rd July Pie of the Month: Blackberry Financier Tart with Elderflower

Bear Creek Rd July Pie of the Month: Blackberry Financier Tart with Elderflower

Jennifer, Bear Creek Road, has several extracts and oils for you to use in your cooking. I tried a few drops of the vanilla citrus in my water and WOW! what a difference it made to plain old water! She also suggests you try it in your tea, or next time you make brownies….hmm, maybe I should have gotten more.

Now you wouldn’t think there is much at the market to make a salad with but you’d be wrong. A fruit salad is always welcome on a warm summer eve. Try combining blueberries (Justin still has some) and peaches (Clecklers) drizzled with Nanette’s creamy peach maple dressing. YUM – EEE! Dee’s perfectly pickled veggies added a delightful spice to her Bloody Marys last week. Don’t forget she has lots of new pickles – beets, okra, string beans, bread n butter, and more – for sandwiches or snacking or salads (although, probably not your fruit salad).

New summertime kombucha flavors from Kombucha Girl Living Beverages

New summertime kombucha flavors from Kombucha Girl Living Beverages

Kombucha Girls’ summer flavors have been out – wonderful flavors, maaahvelous flavors like Hibiscus Mint and Piña Colada. Double your pleasure, double your fun with a bar of Aunt Bee’s new Doublemint soap. The scent takes me back to a younger time and that’s just with it sitting on the counter. Norma Jean’s salad of the month is a tasty Greek salad with ripe olives, red onion, bell pepper, zucchini, tomatoes, and feta cheese and Sam is now making chocolate coconut chips! And his sprouted almond butter can be had with coconut, cacao, or just plain almonds. See what a stroll around the market can uncover?

There’s lots of wonderful to discover at the market so set your alarm clock for fantastic, ‘cause if you sleep in, all you gonna do is dream about it! What fun is that????

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Healthy Living Local Events Shop Local This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Wed Farmers Market sign

Good afternoon, friends!  Come celebrate the 1st of July with us on Wednesday with a delightful lunch. Stay a while and relax with music and friends or take something back to work (or home). Either way, remember to stock up for the rest of the week. Maybe this week, it’s time for a summer noodle salad from Kandi topped with crunchy cucumbers, lemongrass infused chicken, and sprigs of cilantro. A tasty wrap of sliced turkey and spinach is a delicious alternative (or addition), as is Rebecca’s spicy Honduran style hot tamales. Pulled pork, baked beans, and cole slaw will get you in the mood for July 4 and there’s always something delicious at Frankie’s table. Samantha will be joining the Wednesday market for the summer with the perfect medicine for summertime allergies – elderberry syrup. It really does work!

Chompers BBQ - food demo this Saturday at the Covington Farmers Market

Chompers BBQ – food demo this Saturday at the Covington Farmers Market

The Farmers’ Market String Band will get things started on Saturday, crooning out snappy tunes from the gazebo. But even better than that awaits you in the cooking tent. Chompers BBQ will drive the smoker out to the Market for an old fashioned BBQ! That means smoky pulled pork AND smoked cheese stuffed jalapeños (with peppers from the Bardwells.) Yummy, yummy, yummy!

Take a leisurely stroll around the market soaking up the ambiance and getting acquainted with new vendors or those you haven’t seen in a while. You may want a refreshing beverage to take along with you. At the pavilion, you’ll find coffee and tea supplied by Coffee Rani (big time supporters of our market). See Kevin (Coast Roast) for freshly roasted coffee beans or a specialty coffee. Last week he had iced lattes, so cooling on a warm day. Kombucha Girls have new water kefir flavors using mint, peach, and watermelon. Amanda’s juices are always fresh and delicious (so are the Popsicles) and Simply Pure offers juice combinations that are out of this world. A nice bottle of La Serendipity Blanc de Bois wine, nicely chilled, goes a long way to easing cares at the end of a long day.

figs1We have a new blueberry vendor at the market. Justin will not only have lots of those sweet little blue orbs but blueberry jam as well. He’s not the only one with berries, both James and Greg have them, cozily packaged, and waiting for you. Greg also has figs – but get there early. Figs never seem to last very long on the tables. Jubilee Farms and Mr. Houston both have lots of watermelon for 4th of July celebrations —— after your celebration with us, of course.

Samosa potato patties with cilantro chutney, beet carrot and seed salad with ginger dressing and zucchini fries from Slice of Heaven Farm

Samosa potato patties with cilantro chutney, beet carrot and seed salad with ginger dressing and zucchini fries from Slice of Heaven Farm

Here’s another treasure from our friends at Slice of Heaven farms – zucchini fries. Cut your zucchini into thin strips, dredge in flour and seasoning (Spicy Lady or yours truly), dip in milk (Mauthe’s or Farmhouse Dairy) and roll in Panko crumbs and nutritional yeast and roast at 425 for 20 minutes. If you don’t have nutritional yeast, Parmesan cheese makes a delicious substitute.

There really is nothing like a farmers’ market when the veggies are at their peak of flavor and variety. And they grill up so nicely while you’re grilling your burgers or chicken. You did pick up meat, right? No worries. We have a number of fine vendors of pork, sausage, beef, lamb, goat, shrimp, and chicken – Mr. Two, Farmhouse Dairy, Jublilee Farms, and James. If you can find anything to go on that grill, you must have slept in. We will be here celebrating the 4th. Hope you will join us!

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Farmers Market Recipes Healthy Living This Week at the Farmer's Market

Farmer’s Market Recipe: Eggplant Pesto Bruschetta

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Inspired by fresh local ingredients in season at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Ingredients:

little-blue-cut-slices-white-eggplant_w5201 large eggplant, cut in 1 inch chunks with skin
1 12-inch loaf of bread, sliced in 1 inch chunks
2 tbs minced garlic
2 tsp ea sea salt & fresh ground black pepper
Oregano, thyme & marjoram
6 large toes of garlic, peeled
¼ cup pine nuts
¼ cup fresh basil
2 tbs fresh parley
1 tbs fresh mint
Olive oil
1/2 pint of sweet heirloom tomatoes
Fresh shaved parmesan
Balsamic reduction

Note: will need a food processor

Instructions:

sweet-basil-plant-in-terra-cotta-potPreheat oven to 350 degrees F. Sprinkle eggplant generously with salt and let stand for at least 10 minutes. Meanwhile prepared two large baking pans by brushing with olive oil. Combine oregano, thyme, marjoram, minced garlic, salt and pepper with 4 – 6 tbs of olive oil. Rinse off eggplant and pat dry. Brush olive oil mix generously on bread and eggplant. Place both in separate pans. Sprinkle pine nuts & garlic cloves in with eggplant.

Bake the bread for 5 – 10 minutes, or until they turn golden brown. Allow to cool on a rack. Roast the eggplant for another 10 – 15 minutes, or until completely tender. Cool on a rack. Meanwhile puree the basil, parsley and mint into 3 – 4 tbs olive oil. Add cooled eggplant pan contents and puree into a paste consistency. More olive oil, salt or pepper may need to be added to taste.

Serve chilled over the cooled bruschetta bread topped with fresh chopped tomatoes and shaved parmesan with a sweet balsamic reduction drizzle. Enjoy!

Healthy Living Local Events Shop Local This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Wed Farmers Market signGood afternoon, friends and great news – it’s Tuesday again! That means just one more day to a tasty lunch, sweet breezes, and relaxing music – perfect for summertime lunching. Now I know you’re thinking it’s gonna be pretty hot, and it is, but there always seems to be a fair breeze whipping up under the Covington Farmers market pavilion.

But it’s more than fair breezes enticing you to the Market for a lunch of Rebecca’s authentic Honduran food. It’s our amazing vendors and their love of food that has you dreaming of Kandi’s shredded cabbage salad with its crunchy bits of carrot, chicken, red onion and herbs and inviting you to partake of Nanette’s savory summer Minestrone soup with lovely chunks of squash, green beans, tomatoes, and great northern beans swimming in a savory broth seasoned with oregano and basil or tempting you with the prospect of Jeff’s pulled pork and a side of cheese grits and a luscious new creation – ranch macaroni salad.

WatermellonYou’ll get there and have trouble deciding between Frankie’s bread pudding with rum sauce or the new egg custard pies with eggs so fresh you can see the yellow. Don’t forget the veggies – zucchini, bell peppers, squash, potatoes, and watermelon. Our vendors are offering some incredible dishes that are hard to pass up, which is why I usually pick up several and enjoy them throughout the week. Sometimes, I even let Mr. Wonderful share in the bounty.

Saturday morning will roll around (as it usually does at that time of the week), just as bright and lovely as ever. Prepare yourself now for the delightful tunes of Joe Barbara coming from the gazebo. Pat Lester’s Food Wagon will be parked at the curb on Columbia Street. Make sure you get here early to get your coffee and enjoy the morning, the music, the many market delights.

Bartlett Farm has heirloom tomatoes galore!!

Bartlett Farm has heirloom tomatoes galore!!

New vegetables are joining the ranks each week. Nick has a selection of heirloom eggplant with names that are as inviting as the vegetable, such as Ping Tong, Pandora Striped, Louisiana Green, and L’il Sailor. They could get you in trouble, though. “Hey, John and Mary, how ‘bout joining us for dinner tonight? We’re cooking up a batch of L’il Sailors – so nice and tasty!” (OK, OK, I’ll stop.) Mr. Houston has 2 varieties of watermelon – traditional and one called Moon & Stars. You may even get lucky and get a few of Natalie’s ghost eggplant.

purple hull peasEddie has yard-long beans and purple hull peas in the shell and you’ll find cuccuzzas hanging around Bardwell’s table. The Clecklers have sweet Alabama peaches and Pink Lady peas. John has a tasty mix of fuzzy yellow tomatoes, bright orange and long skinny reds that look more like a red pepper than a tomato. Didn’t matter to me; they were real good. Fancy names or not, there’s still lots of good eats on the tables.

A Rainbow of kombucha from Kombucha Girl Living Beverages

A Rainbow of kombucha from Kombucha Girl Living Beverages

Althee tells me she is adding no sugar added jams to her repertoire starting with mango and blueberry and will soon add strawberry as well. Hot Tamale Mama is stunning the tamale world with her latest creation – red beans and rice tamales! I haven’t tasted them yet but Pam has a knack for making the ordinary extraordinary. She also has a new oyster mushroom and lentil soup. With all this great food hanging around, please tell me you’re not planning to sleep in. We’d hate for you to miss out.

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Healthy Living Local Events Shop Local This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Wed Farmers Market signHowdy, friends!  It’s Tuesday again. Wrangle them tastebuds in and get ready to head on over to the Covington Farmers’ Market for a mighty tasty lunch. OK, I jumped the gun a bit; there’s 20 more hours before you can bask in swift breezes, lots of sunshine, finger-snappin’, toe-tappin’ music and lots of great food. Can’t wait, can you?

Big Branch Soaps - Revitalize Bar Soap - Sweet Orange, Geranium, Rosehip All Natural Soap

Big Branch Soaps – Revitalize Bar Soap – Sweet Orange, Geranium, Rosehip All Natural Soap

Nanette will be there with her crunchy delicious veggie wraps and tomato basil soup. Enjoy one of Rebecca’s remarkable chicken tamales or wrap yourself around a smoky pulled pork sandwich and fixins’ from Jeff. Kandi has the most incredible salmon salad (not to mention the crispy egg rolls) your mouth will ever bite into. Pace yourself, now, ‘cause you’ll need to save room for a slice of Frankie’s remarkable brownies! She has Hershey chocolate and walnut brownies tomorrow. What a way to finish a summertime meal! Don’t forget cleanup. Big Branch Soaps is now at the Wednesday market with laundry and dish detergents and lovely lotions for the hands no matter what kind of work you do. Cleanup on the veggies, too, with potatoes, tomatoes, squash, and cucumbers and Greg may even have some peaches and blueberries.

Keith & Nealy Frentz displaying the Lola Deux Food Truck

Keith & Nealy Frentz displaying the Lola Deux Food Truck

Bring Dad along on Saturday to enjoy an early Father’s Day. We’ll all be enjoying Michael Millet in the gazebo. Keith and Nealy Frentz will add pizzazz to the morning when Lola Deux Food Truck pulls up to the curb. WOW! I know…just take a deep breath, go get your coffee (Kevin’s got a great lineup of fancy coffees, lattes, etc. at the Coast Roast tent) and get in line for those delightful Parmesan fries. Can ya handle it, Dad?

If you’re really not in the mood for coffee, how about an uplifting juice from Simply Pure or Amanda? If you haven’t tried beet juices, you don’t know what you’re missing. There’s this great little thing about beet juices like the power to increase blood flow through the blood vessels. But if beet just isn’t your thing, there’s a whole passel of fresh juices ripe for the choosing.

Juices from Simply Pure at the Covington Farmer's Market

Juices from Simply Pure at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Hot Tamale Mama is your go-to place when you don’t feel like cooking. She has a delicious selection of prepared foods, such as chicken pot pie, vegetarian lasagne, stuffed noodles, and hot tamales. While you’re over there, let Dad indulge in a bag of Theresa’s lemon crunch cookies or almond macaroons. Or bring home one of Angel’s flavorful stuffed artichokes. That’s a meal in itself. On the lighter side, one of Nur’s Turkish salads such as green lentil and quinoa or tabouli is sure to please.

The Clecklers have fresh beans and peas ready for the pot. JR has the onions and bell peppers to chop up in them and Spicy Lady and I have all kinds of different seasoning to add life and love to ‘em. Pass by Jubilee Farms to see if he has Andouille sausage to throw in them beans. If not, green onion sausage will work right well. Pick up a few ears of fresh corn while you’re there. What are you waiting for? Lasso your calendar and hog tie the date! We’ll see you there!

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 www.covingtonfarmersmarket.org

Market Menu-06-16-15