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This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Farmers’ Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Covington Farmers’ Market weekly newsletter by Charlene LeJeune:

Heartfelt salutations, dear friends! Market Day is almost upon us…you can feel that tingling way down in your toes as you consider the lunch possibilities. First, you’ll need your Double K eggs. Those hens are really so diligent in keeping us supplied. Hopefully, Jerry will have satsumas and he always has rich, sweet honey! Croque Monsieur is on Jerome’s menu— a delicious grilled sandwich with ham, a sauce made with gruyere cheese and more cheese. oooh! la! la! Apricot cake, too! Welcome back, Abeer! Now we can enjoy her delicious hummus and baklava again. She’ll have both green bean and eggplant moussaka as well. 

Golden Light Candle Sale at the Covington Farmers’ Market Wed & Sat

Tomorrow may just be the time for you to try Johnny’s veggie Bhakti Bowl, a truly delicious, warming bowl with rice and squash and flavor, lots of flavor. Mignon will have her fabulous “chics” and jun. Her handmade beeswax candles are fast becoming quite the item around the market. Chicken pasta, empanadas, and boudin balls are the stars on Joy’s table. Kandy’s salads are always a treat and it’s hard to choose just one but the good thing is that they are just as good the next day. So, while you may not  be able to decide what’s for lunch on Wednesday, you can can enjoy any of these lunches on Thursday or Friday and they make great suppers, too!

Last Chance Bluegrass Band will be coming to you from the gazebo as Saturday marches in! So grab yourself a hot cuppa coffee (or tea) from the pavilion to enjoy while you’re making groceries. Huckleberry Fred’s will be there every other week for the next month or so. They will be there this week and along with goat milk and cheese blends. Plus, they are now offering yellow grits and cornmeal (ground with their own little hands, I think). Cow’s milk is available each week from Mauthe’s. You’ll also find buttermilk, heavy cream and, Mr. Wonderful’s and the grandkids favorite, chocolate milk.

Beautiful mushroom selections from Screaming Oaks Mushroom Farm at the Covington Farmers Market

Credo Farms will be at the market on Saturday so you can stock up on chicken or even try some of her lovely fragranced, homemade soaps. She’s generally there on the 2nd and 4th weeks each month. And right next door is James of the amazing mushrooms fame. These are not the little button mushrooms available in any grocery store, these are gourmet types like Lion’s Mane, Chestnut, Oyster, Shiitake, jam packed with micronutrients! 

Sweet potatoes are soooo delicious but most of the recipes you find are filled with sugar. Why not try something different, like Garlic Parmesan Sweet Potatoes. What you’ll need is a container of sweet potatoes (Nick). This will work with any of the varieties that he has. Peel and cut them into similarly sized pieces or slice them.  In a bowl, combine 2 tbsp melted butter (Mauthe’s), 1 tbsp olive oil, 2 tsp minced garlic, 4 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese, 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning, and a bit of fresh thyme (Northshore Greens). Add your sweet potatoes and toss to coat. Bake at 400F for 30-35 minutes. Enjoy! Hmmm. That recipe may work just as well with cauliflower or broccoli (Ken, Eddie).

Sweet potatoes & satsumas from Nick at GROW.farms

I noticed that Sam had lots of daikon radish last week so I went searching for recipes and came across Daikon Radish Pancakes. Whaaat! Yes, you heard me right and they sound so delicious and a lovely accompaniment to any meal or (if you make them a little smaller) the perfect hor d’oeuvre. You’ll need 1 cup grated daikon (squeezed dry), 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, 1/4 cup room temp water, 2 tbsp black sesame seeds, pinch white pepper, 1/2 tsp salt and 1 green onion (Ken, Eddie). For the complete recipe, see below.

Johnadale has plenty of strawberries. I’d try to find a recipe but, let’s face it, they really don’t last long enough to make it into a recipe since they are delightful without any fanfare. But if you wanted to enjoy your berries in a “recipe” stroll on over to Succotash Ferments. Nancy makes an exquisite kefir with them. 

Stay a while, enjoy the music, shop around to find something different; we’ve got pralines, we’ve got sprouts and mircogreens, we’ve got jams and jellies; we’ve got honey, we’ve got divinity; we’ve got amazing pickled veggies; we’ve even got chewy puppy treats! Don’t even think about sleeping in!

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

Check out our Facebook page – facebook.com/thecovingtonlafarmersmarket
On Instagram — @covingtonlafarmersmarket

Sam Sprouts at the Covington Farmers Market

Daikon Radish Pancakes

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  • 1 cup daikon radish, grated and squeezed dry
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup room temp water
  • 2 tablespoons black sesame seeds
  • 1 pinch white pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt, for drawing out moisture

1 scallion, chopped (optional)

Dipping Sauce

  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce 
  • 1 teaspoon wasabi 

DIRECTIONS

  • Prepare the Daikon Radish. You will need around 400 grams (14 oz or just under a pound) of raw, unpeeled Daikon radish for this recipe. Start by peeling the radish, then finely grate it with a grater or finely chop it with a knife. Add the salt, mix well to combine, and let stand for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, take handfuls of the grated daikon and squeeze out as much liquid as possible; transfer the squeezed daikon into another bowl.
  • Prepare the Batter. Add the all purpose flour in two batches, stirring in between additions. Follow that with room temperature water and mix well until a batter forms.
  • Fry the Pancakes. In a non-stick pan, heat up a touch of oil on medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot, spoon the batter on and shape them into round disks. Sprinkle on some black sesame seeds on the uncooked side of each pancake, and when the bottom becomes golden-brown, carefully flip them and fry until both sides are golden-brown. Remove them from the pan and let drain on a paper towel.
  • Prepare the sauce. Make the sauce by simply mixing soy sauce and wasabi.
Farmers Market Recipes

Farmers’ Market Recipe: Crowder Peas & Stewed Greens for a Local New Years Tradition

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Seasonal recipes inspired by fresh ingredients found at the Covington Farmers’ Market by Chelsea Cochrane

For many of us here in the South, New Years day would be incomplete without the compliments of black-eyed peas and greens. This tradition is said to bring prosperity and good luck into the new year.

The recipe has inevitably changed over the years, but probably not by much. The standard ingredients generally remain the same: peas (usually black-eyed), pork, rice and greens. You can’t go wrong with a dish like that. Some folks make it all in one pot – I prefer to cook my rice separate, and ever since I tried this stewed greens recipe I can’t have them any other way. You can add a local twist by using Nick’s crowder peas from the Farmers’ Market in place of the black-eyed peas! After all, traditionally we used what was around us. The Market has plenty of fresh greens for you to choose from too, and as always, hormone and nitrate free bacon from Jubilee Farms.

Crowder Peas & Stewed Greens

(serves about 4 people)

Ingredients for the peas:

  • 6 – 8 ounces bacon, cubed in 1/2 inch chunks, from Jubilee Farms
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 2 – 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb crowder peas from Nick at GROW.farm
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 2 – 4 cups water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tsp dried basil
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • cayenne, salt and black pepper to taste

For serving:
4 cups cooked rice of your choice
1/2 cup chopped green onion for garnish
optional: homemade hot sauce

Directions for the peas:

  1. Sort and rinse peas before use.
  2. In a large pot, bring peas and 6 cups of water to a boil. Let it roll for about 5 minutes, then turn the pot off and let them sit for 15 minutes or so. Strain into a colander.
  3. In the same large pot rinsed out and dried, cook bacon until it begins to crisp. Add onions, bell pepper and celery with a little salt and pepper. Once fragrant, add garlic. Stir and cook for a few more minutes.
  4. Add peas back in with 4 cups broth. Bring up to a boil then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer. Mix in bay leaf, herbs and spices. Add water a 1/2 cup at a time as needed. Cook to desired consistency.

Ingredients for the Greens:

  • 4 – 6 ounces of bacon, chopped
  • 1/2 sweet onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 lightly packed cups chopped greens of your choice – collards or mustard
  • 1 cup broth or water
  • 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • red chili pepper flakes to taste
  • salt & pepper to taste

Directions for the greens:

  1. In a large skillet, cook bacon until crispy. Remove and pat off excess oil. Set aside.
  2. In the same skillet, saute onions until they are translucent. Add garlic and stir.
  3. Add the greens in batches, about a cup at a time. Pour in the broth and bring to a light boil – reduce heat and simmer for 5 – 10 minutes, until a good bit of the liquid has cooked out. Add the apple cider vinegar, honey and spices.

Serve with cornbread & have a Happy New Years!

Farmers Market Recipes

Farmers Market Recipe: Sweet Potato Spiced Lentils & Cumin Roasted Cauliflower

Published by:

By Chelsea Cochrane

Bring on the fall veggies! Autumn harvests are full of warming foods, well-paired with rich spices like ginger, turmeric and cumin. Sweet potato is a favorite for a reason – its versatile flavor and texture can go sweet or savory and adds something special to almost any dish.

Try out this delicious recipe using fresh sweet potatoes from Grow.Farm, sweet bell peppers from Faust Farms and fresh turmeric from Sam Sprouts. All at the Covington Farmer’s Market!

Sweet Potato Spiced Lentils & Cumin Roasted Cauliflower

Ingredients for the lentils:

  • 1 cup dried lentils
  • 2 cups vegetable broth & 1 cup water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 Tablespoon cooking oil
  • 1 lb sweet potato, cubed in 1/2 inch cubes – from Nick at Grow.Farm
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped sweet peppers – from Faust Farms
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 – 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 – 2 Tablespoons of minced fresh turmeric – from Sam’s Sprouts
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 – 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • a dash of fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1 Tablespoon dried rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • sea salt & fresh ground black pepper

For the cauliflower:

  • 1 whole head of cauliflower
  • 4 – 5 cloves garlic, peeled, whole
  • 2 – 3 Tablespoons of cooking oil
  • 2 – 3 Tablespoons of cumin
  • 1 Tablespoon course sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper

Directions for lentils:

  1. Bring lentils with bay leaf, broth, water & a little salt to a boil then reduce heat to medium low – simmer for 20-30 minutes, until lentils are tender. Drain most of excess liquid.
  2. Heat a large skillet on medium high. Add oil and sweet potatoes with a little salt and pepper. Sautee, tossing occasionally, until potatoes are browned mostly evenly.
  3. Lower heat to medium. Add in onion, peppers, & celery. Sautee until fragrant.
  4. Add in garlic, spices & herbs. Add more salt & pepper to taste.
  5. Once everything has cooked well together add to lentils. Let simmer on low covered for a few minutes for flavors to combine.
  6. Serve like this or over rice.

Directions for the roasted cauliflower:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Clean outer leaves off cauliflower head but keep head whole! Rinse well.
  3. Shove whole cloves of garlic between cauliflower florettes.
  4. Rub with cooking oil, covering entire head.
  5. Sprinkle with cumin, salt & pepper.
  6. Roast for 30 – 45 minutes, or until browned and beginning to get crispy.
Farmers Market Recipes

Farmer’s Market Recipe: Black Bean & Crowder Chili

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Fresh recipes inspired by local ingredients found at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Chelsea Cochrane

Nothing welcomes in the first few cool fronts of Fall like a nice homemade chili.

Fall is my favorite season for a lot of reasons, top among them being soups, stews, and chili. Another favorite thing about the first cool snap is breaking out all my baking tools I so sparsely use during the hot summer months. Not that I needed much more than a bowl, a whisk and a pan for this fantastic apple spice cake mix from Henderson’s Hearth at the Covington Farmer’s Market. The recipe called for a sprinkle of powdered sugar on top – not having that handy, I can say that it was quite delicious on its own.

Henderson’s Hearth also has some delicious soup mixes, like potato, hearty barley, and the black bean soup mix we used for this recipe. Crowder peas from Nick at Grow.Farm is a nice addition that gives this chili a hearty, rich flavor and serves as an excellent meat replacement. Of course, you can add some ground beef from Jubilee Farms. I find the full flavor of the beans, peas and veggies are a perfect balance for an early Fall chili!

Black Bean & Crowder Pea Chili

Ingredients:

Crowder Peas from GROW.farm
  • Black Bean Soup Mix from Henderson’s Hearth
  • 1 cup fresh crowder peas, hulled & rinsed from Grow.farm
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 – 4 cups water
  • optional – 1 lb ground beef from Jubilee Farms
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped bell pepper – Faust Farms is back with some beautiful produce!
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped carrot
  • 1 ear of corn, shucked
  • 1/2 cup chopped arugula – fresh from the market!
  • 3 heirloom tomatoes, diced – fresh from the market!
  • 15 oz can of fire-roasted diced tomatoes and chilies
  • 2 – 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • optional – a couple of hot peppers, minced, or hot pepper flakes
  • 2 Tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • salt & black pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • a splash or two of fresh lime juice

Directions:

  • In a large pot bring bean mix and peas up to a boil in broth and 2 cups of water. Boil for a few minutes then reduce heat to medium-low – let simmer covered. Add bay leaf and a little salt.
  • If you are using meat, brown it first with some spices in the same skillet before cooking the veggies and set aside for later
  • In a large skillet over medium heat sautee all veggies up to the canned tomatoes with a little salt and pepper
  • Add the canned tomatoes, garlic and hot peppers if you are using them. Add all the spices, too
  • Once the beans are tender add all ingredients to the pot. Allow this mix to cook together for 15, 20 minutes, up to an hour on low.
  • Depending on how you like your chili you may need to add a little more water. Adjust salt & spices accordingly.
  • Stir in the fresh cilantro and lime juice right before serving.

Farmers Market Recipes

Farmer’s Market Recipe: Crowder Peas & Duck Cassoulet

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Fresh recipes inspired by local ingredients found at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Chelsea Cochrane

An example of a traditional cassoulet from the Toulouse Office de Tourisme, France

Usually I share quick and easy recipes with you, designed to whip up in under an hour. This is not one of those recipes.

Cassoulet traditionally is a rich, slow-cooked casserole that originates in southern France and usually contains water fowl, pork and white beans. In the classic French style, this is typically a two-day ordeal. As a general rule for optimal flavor and consistency you want to cool the dish down completely twice and cook it three times. This can get a bit tedious. I’ve modified this recipe slightly to fit my own cooking style, but have included options to expand upon for a more traditional flavor.

Purple hull Crowder Peas from Nick at the Covington Farmers Market

One cooking tradition I like to uphold is using locally sourced ingredients. Historically most long-established recipes would change slightly from province to province depending on what crops and game were available in that area. Why buy food from halfway across the country when you can get it fresh at your local market?

This recipe uses fresh crowder peas from Nick at Grow.Farm. If you see them there, don’t pass them up. Shelling peas together as a family is one of those life-long memories you don’t want to miss out on. Grab extra to dry and have year-round! Crowder peas are very close to black-eyed peas in the cow pea family, known for their rich nutty flavor and versatility.

Crowder Peas & Duck Cassoulet

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz uncured bacon, cubed, from Jubilee Farms
  • 10-12 oz quartered duck legs from Backwater Duck Farm
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup minced carrot
  • 1/2 pound oyster or other favorite mushroom, chopped, from Screaming Oaks Mushroom Farm
  • 6 – 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound shelled fresh crowder peas, rinsed, from Grow.Farm
  • 6 – 8 cups chicken broth from Credo Farms
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  • Heat a large dutch oven or other oven-proof pot on the stove-top at medium-high heat.
  • Once pot is hot add bacon cubes. Let sit for a few minutes before stirring, then sit again. Try to get an even brown on all sides. Remove from pot and cool.
  • Repeat process with the duck legs. Once evenly browned set aside to cool.
  • Reduce heat slightly to medium and sautee onion, pepper, celery and carrots in debris and fat left from the meats. Add a little salt and pepper.
  • Cover & cook until veggies are soft. Add mushrooms and garlic. Cover again.
  • There are two options here. You can add the peas, meat and stock back in, bring it up to a boil for a minute then soak overnight, ready to cook in the morning. Or, you can remove the veggies from the pot and cook the peas in the stock for 30 minutes, then add the veggies and meats back in. Either way works. Slip in that bay leaf here at some point, too.
  • And either way once the peas have cooked enough to soften you’ll want to cool the dish down completely, one last time, before it goes in the oven. This can be accomplished by a.) being patient or b.) placing the whole pot in an ice-bath in your sink.
  • Once cooled fish out any bones from the duck legs. The meat should have fallen off by now. Add your herbs and nutmeg. Salt & pepper to taste.
  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  • Place your dutch oven or large oven-proof pot in the middle of the oven, uncovered.

I bet you think because it’s going in the oven the hard part is over, right?

Truth is, this classic French recipe requires a little more doting to achieve a true traditional flavor. You see, as this dish cooks it creates a delicious crust on top. Original recipes call to occasionally pierce this crust, gently scoop out some of the liquids underneath and pour it over the crust, returning it back to the oven to form another fantastic layer of crust. Traditionally this step is done seven times! I think a few times suffice, but definitely don’t skip it. Those layers add a wonderful richness and depth to this dish, and it would surely be lacking without them.

Continue baking until much of the liquid is cooked out and several layers have formed a nicely browned crust, about 45 minutes. Serve with a vinaigrette salad, red wine and a nice toasted fresh bread.

Bon appétit!

This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

Published by:

Covington Farmer’s Market weekly e-newsletter provided by Charlene LeJeune:

Happy, Happy October, friends! Well, almost. No matter, the weather is lovely and inviting you to a delightful lunch at the Covington Farmers’ Market. Didn’t I tell you to get some soup mixes from Henderson’s Hearth last week? You didn’t??!! No problem. Check ‘em out this week ‘cause these cooler days (and cooler nights) will be with us for at least this week. I’ve tried the Celtic Blend and the Creamy Rice (excellent!). I’m anxious to try the Black Bean.

Henderson’s Hearth is ready for fall! Covington Farmer’s Market (click for link)

Mr. Houston is always there with his veggies – count on peppers and eggplant. This cooler weather is sure to make the Double K hens happy and when the hens are happy, the eggs are plentiful. I usually opt for one of Kandy’s amazing salads but she also makes tasty spring rolls as well filled with shrimp or chicken, lettuce, cilantro, and noodles. It’s like a salad in a wrap. (You may as well pick up some of her creamy shrimp rolls or you’ll be thinking about them all day and probably Thursday as well.)

Hummus, grape leaves, chicken & spinach pies fill Abeer’s table but there’s also Eggplant Moussaka this week. Corey is smoking up a gorgeous pork roast, perfect for making his pulled pork sandwiches and he will be making his tasty cole slaw! Mignon has developed a delightful tonic, strengthening your body in readiness for the winter season. It’s a subtle blend of wild cherry bark, sarsaparilla, anise seed, star anise, and slippery elm. Baby Bhakti has arrived! Congratulations to Johnny and Caroline! Jerome will wow us this week with a creamy Three-Cheese Quiche. I know! Can’t wait to taste it!

As Saturday rolls around, the delightful tunes of the Steve Anderson Band fall from the gazebo and flood the market with music. (I was going to say spring but we are well past that.) So grab your coffee or milk or kombucha or fresh juice and take a stroll around the market to see what’s new.

Last of the summer veggies from GROW.farm (click for link)

These cooler temps just seem to put the fall veggies in gear and, if we are lucky, we’ll be seeing some greens soon. Or you can try growing your own. Simply grab a bag of good potting mix and find a sunny location. Poke a few holes in the top and you are ready to plant starter plants from Alton & Sandra — lettuces, kales, parsley (gotta have some herbs), thyme. You may want to ask him about Culantro which apparently tastes like cilantro but looks like a thistle. Get some mushrooms too. You don’t need to plant these; James has already done the work. You just need to cook and enjoy!

Greg is bringing pumpkins! I’ll have to pull out my soup recipes and check out different ways to cook this fabulous veg. Hmmm. Pie comes to mind….muffins…and breads…I wonder if our lovely artisan bakers will take advantage of that. Even if they don’t, a fantastic loaf from Happy Flour or Bear Creek Road will pair perfectly with your soup or the mix of Henderson’s soup mix you got on Wednesday, especially when wearing a spread of Jennifer’s blended butters. For my vegan friends, Jim’s Low-Carb Cauliflower Crust is perfect. Plus, it has so much flavor, anything else would get in the way.

We may not have full out greens yet, but we do have microgreens. Aminta grows an amazing selection of this mini powerhouses. Sprouts also contain a wealth of nutrition, so check out Sam’s. Nutrition powerhouses can come in liquid form, too, and Nancy’s strawberry kefir is fabulous! Try the kombucha flavors as well. And nothing says delicious like a fresh glass of juice from Amanda.

Remember to pick up your Elderberry Syrup from Naturally Well and your raw honey from Blood River, Nick, or Serenity Lane. Indulge in tasty beef jerky from 3 J’s and peruse the Moringa Teas from Exnihilo Farms (and the rabbit).

No matter where you look, you’ll find something wonderful at our Market. Whether you’re looking for doggie treats (Tiger Bait), or treats for yourself (Rose’s creamy pralines), or delicious prepared foods (Norma Jean or Tessier Gourmet), you’ll never regret NOT sleeping in.

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

Check out our Facebook page – facebook.com/thecovingtonlafarmersmarket
On Instagram — @covingtonlafarmersmarket

Farmers Market Recipes

Farmer’s Market Recipe: Quick and Easy Roasted Ratatouille (that doesn’t feed an army)

Published by:

Fresh recipes inspired by local ingredients by Chelsea Cochrane

Ratatouille is one of those classic early fall dishes because it uses so many of the end-of-the-season fresh veggies that we’re not quite sure what to do with now. It’s really a bit of a kitchen sink stew, usually consisting of eggplant, zucchini, tomatoes and peppers. Feel free to add other veggies such as yellow squash or patty pan.

There are two down sides to ratatouille in my opinion: it takes an afternoon to make and is WAY too much food for two people. Sure you can re-invent it as a side or main course, serve it over orzo, rice, noodles, even quinoa (it’s delicious!) but after day three even the best dishes get tiring. Not to mention if you want an even sear on your veggies you’ll end up sauteing them in batches, which can take up the better part of a day pretty quickly.

Never fear, your oven is here! You can get a nice brown on those veggies in a fraction of the time by roasting them in the oven. Plus you get the added bonus of all your veggies cooking together and sharing their delicious flavor juices. Yum.

there’s something magical about roasted tomatoes and garlic

Note: roasted eggplant can get bitter! The trick is to toss sliced eggplant with salt in a colander and let sit for 15 – 20 minutes, then rinse and strain it out. Don’t skip this step! The salt helps to pull the bitterness out of the skin so you can leave it on and keep the benefits of its color and texture.

So here’s a quick(er) Ratatouille for Two recipe. You can always double it for more people, or freeze some for a future meal. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

Asian eggplant and black bell peppers from Nick at GROW.farm

1 medium yellow onion, sliced in 1/4 inch half-moons
1/2 pound bell pepper, red or yellow (or black, like these delicious peppers from GROW.farm) sliced about 1/4 inch strips
1 pound eggplant, sliced 1/4 inch half-moons (Asian varieties seem to work best for this, and are still plentiful at the Market!)
1 medium zucchini, sliced 1/4 inch half-moons
4 medium tomatoes, cubed
6 – 8 cloves garlic, crushed
1/4 cup fresh thinly sliced basil (or 2 Tbs basil pesto) plus 2 more tablespoons for serving
1 tablespoon rosemary
2 teaspoons oregano
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon dark chili powder
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
about 1/4 cup low-flavor cooking oil
1/2 cup vegetable stock
1 bay leaf
Optional: 1 15oz can of stewed or diced tomatoes

Directions

  • Toss sliced eggplant with salt in a colander and let sit for 15 – 20 minutes, or up to an hour. Rinse well, strain juices and pat dry.
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Apply parchment paper over a 12×16 sheet pan.
  • In a large bowl, mix all ingredients except vegetable stock and bay leaf. Use enough oil to coat veggies. Toss until well combined. Spread evenly on sheet pan.
  • Cook 15 minutes and toss for even roasting. Continue cooking for an additional 10 – 15 minutes until veggies begin to brown. Remove from oven and let sit for a minute.
  • Combine in large pot with stock & bay leaf over medium heat. If you’d like a more tomato-y stew, you can add a 15oz can of stewed or diced tomatoes.
  • Cook just long enough for everything to meld together and be evenly heated, about 5 minutes. Stir in remaining fresh basil or serve on top.
This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Farmers Market by Charlene LeJeune

Published by:

The Covington Farmer’s Market weekly newsletter by Charlene LeJeune:

Althee’s Jellies & Jams at the Covington Farmer’s Market (click for link)

Aren’t Tuesdays wonderful, friends? And better still, Wednesday is almost here! Now, it may be a bit on the dreary side (thank you, Beta) but it will be blissfully cooler! So join your Covington Farmers’ Market vendors for a wonderful lunch. Abeer will line up all the usual suspects but you will have a hard time picking out one. Whichever you decide, don’t forget to include grape leaves and hummus —fabulous for snacking. If Kandy’s creamy shrimp rolls are getting a little tiring week after week (yeah…right), a great choice is her lemongrass infused chicken salad, always a favorite of mine because it is very versatile. I can have a fantastic salad or I add a quart of chicken broth or stock. Chop up the cilantro and add to half the soup; to the other half pour in some or all of the “dressing” and voila! two different soups and with temps dipping into the 70s, you’re gonna need warmth.

I do really enjoy blueberry jam from Jerry. I add it to my smoothies or the yogurt I picked up on Saturday from Mauthe’s. So having a jar in the fridge perks up my day…did I mention its absolutely perfect paring with peanut butter? While it may not go well with peanut butter, you can’t go wrong with Corey’s smoked chicken, brisket, and brisket chili. He’ll have his amazing BBQ nachos and Frito pie, too!

Henderson’s Hearth at the Covington Farmer’s Market (click for link)

You definitely don’t want to forget your eggs! They are an essential part of cooking. Henderson’s Hearth offers a plethora of baking and soup mixes, not to mention jams. Hopefully, Johnny and Caroline will be there with their exclusive Bhakti Farms meals and treats but baby will definitely dictate that.

Music from Mr. Funny Money and his All Stars will be prancing out from the gazebo as our market gets into full swing on Saturday. So grab your coffee and get shopping. Start your morning with a veggie pancakes from Meme’s or one of Jennifer’s amazing breakfast sandwiches. Norma Jean prepares a delightfully delicious quiche that makes for a lovely breakfast (but then so does one of her brownies).

Pasture-raised chickens from Credo Farm
(click for link)

If my calculations are correct, Credo Farms will join us this weekend, offering eggs and chicken (whole or parts). a few weeks ago, I discovered a seasoning she makes with kelp, oregano, thyme, basil and several other spices. You don’t need a lot to give your broth or meat or veggies a lovely flavor. I’ll bet her seasoning would be lovely on duck breast or thighs from Ross. Kaitlin from Exnihilo Farms will have whole rabbit this week. She also prepares a green onion powder that makes a delicious dip. I wonder if it also make a great seasoning on those rabbit pieces before you stew them. Remember to visit James for mushrooms to go with your rabbit stew (or chicken stew or hmmm…..yes, you can make stewed duck.)

Huckleberry Fred’s Creamery at the Covington Farmer’s Market (click for link)

Get your dairy fix with goat milk and cheeses from Huckleberry Fred’s. I’m not much on goat milk but their blended cheeses (like French Onion or Garlic) are delightful. As with goat’s milk, I’m not big on cow’s milk either, but I do love Mauthe’s buttermilk (go figure) and my grandson has declared their chocolate milk is the best in the world! Their yogurt is pretty terrific, too! You can eat it plain or stir in one of Althee or Stacey tasty jams, or top with Norma’s granola.

There really is so much to discover and enjoy at the Covington Farmers’ Market. Wonderful things, marvelous things, like pralines (Rose), fruity popsicles (Amanda), apple turnovers (Happy Flour), doggie treats (Tiger Bait), raw honey (Blood River, Nick, Serenity Lane). Of course, you’ll never discover everything that’s new and tasty without being here. You must come and enjoy the adventure with 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

Check out our Facebook page – facebook.com/thecovingtonlafarmersmarket
On Instagram — @covingtonlafarmersmarket

This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Farmers Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Covington Farmer’s Market weekly e-newsletter provided by Charlene LeJeune

Basil from Sam’s Sprouts at Covington Farmer’s Market

Welcome to Tuesday, friends, and what a wild Tuesday it is! Hurricane…no hurricane…Sally finally made up her mind. Our Wednesday market is still on and Abeer is planning to be there with her fabulous Mediterranean foods. Jerry is also planning to be there with both honey and blueberry spread. If she is able to pull things together quickly, Kandy and her amazing salads, spring rolls, and egg rolls will be there. Unfortunately, I can’t be more specific than that since our vendors had no idea what the weather would end up like. Of course, nothing short of a city order stops our Farmers’ Market band from tuning up and serving us with great music. Hope to see ya at the market!

Where is a better place to be on a Saturday morning than the Farmers’ Market, especially after a storm? I don’t know either, but I do know that this Saturday will begin with the delightful tunes of Aden Paul spilling out of the gazebo. So grab your coffee, juice, or ‘booch’ and a hearty breakfast and spend a little time taking in the wonderfulness that is the Covington Farmers’ Market!

Norma Jean’s Cuisine at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Those amazing veggie pancakes from Meme make a fantastic breakfast. Meme also makes a tangy Kimchi. Jennifer, at Bear Creek Road, has some tasty breakfast options, not to mention sweet treats, butter blends and an amazing assortment of breads and, yes, dinner rolls. Norma Jean’s quiches and enchilada pie are legendary and an excellent source of morning nourishment. Althee’s pies and quick breads are absolutely fabulous with a hot cuppa joe. You’ll find some delicious muffins and apple tarts at Happy Flour and an unbelievable assortment of artisan sourdough breads.

Check out Jubilee Farms for your beef, lamb, and pork. Liz has some lovely roasts, chops, sausages and bone broth. Duck on the menu? Ross is the one to see. He has duck meat and duck products (fat, liver, pate, and maybe even broth).

GROW.farm okra at the Farmer’s Market

Eggplant, peppers, and okra are the mainstay of veggies as produce transitions from summer to fall. Nevertheless, there is still lots of delicious to be found. Micah has a wonderful selection of low-sodium jerky. Try any one of his flavors—Teriyaki, Hawaiian, Habanero, Original. Burled Baby Corn, Lemony Cauliflower, Spicy Asparagus and more from Stacey is a most delightful way of enjoying your veggies.

No greens at the market yet? Oh yes, Sam has sprouts and some fresh basil. I know sometimes you look at the bundle and think, “what will I do with all that basil?” While I believe Sam will work with you on bundle size, remember that basil freezes well and would be a great addition to soup or sauce. Just throw a bunch in your food processor and let ‘er whirl while drizzling in some olive oil. Then spoon into an old ice cube tray and freeze. Then, pop into a freezer bag and you’ll have some for use throughout the winter. Peppers freeze nicely, too, with very little effort. Chop, spread on parchment covered cookie sheet, freeze. After an hour or so in the freezer, you can put them in a ziplock bag and freeze, ready for use through the winter and into the spring. Microgreens, Aminta-style, may be small but will add loads of green nutrition to all your dishes.

Naturally Well Elderberry at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Now may just be the time to stock up on some honey. Blood River Honey has been a market favorite for many years has an amazing flavor. Several of our other vendors offer honey as well. Nick has a wonderful honey. And right next door, there is Naturally Well’s Elderberry Syrup. There ya go, a fabulous (and tasty) one-two punch for flu season. Serenity Lane also has a raw unfiltered honey along with skin care products that will have you looking and feeling great, inside and out.

No matter what the storms of life bring, we hope that your Covington Farmers’ Market can bring a modicum of relief. God bless and keep 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
Check out our Facebook page – facebook.com/thecovingtonlafarmersmarket
On Instagram — @covingtonlafarmersmarket

Farmers Market Recipes

Farmer’s Market Recipe: Easy Homemade Hot Sauce

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Recipes inspired by fresh ingredients found at the Covington Farmer’s Market by Chelsea Cochrane

Louisianaians cherish their hot sauces. Everyone has their favorite – some of us even carry it around with us. On the list of necessary condiments, hot sauce comes right after salt and pepper.

Peppers from GROW.farm at the Saturday Covington Farmers Market

The good news for us is that hot peppers grown in abundance in our climate. Cayenne, scotch bonnet and tobasco peppers are some favorites. Add one (1) to any dish and you will know it’s there. This means that if you buy a bunch from the market, or have them growing in your garden, you are left to figure out what else to do with them.

Wonder no more with this easy and delicious homemade hot sauce recipe! You can adjust this recipe depending on how many peppers you have and how spicy or savory you want it to be by adjusting your hot pepper/sweet pepper/garlic ratios. Any hot pepper will do – the redder, the better. I used a blend of scotch bonnets, tobasco peppers, banana peppers and a red bell pepper. The yellow of the banana peppers brightened into a nice orange when I blended it up. Just cut the stems off your hot peppers and leave the star tops on for extra smoky flavor.

Note: seriously, use caution when dealing with hot peppers. Use gloves or wash hands immediately with cold water when handling. DO NOT touch your eyes, face, or any other sensitive areas. Cooking peppers can be a very cleansing experience, especially for your sinus cavities. Breathe with caution.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 lb hot peppers of your choosing, whole
  • 1/2 lb small sweet peppers, halved
  • 6 – 8 cloves garlic, halved
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cups of filtered water
  • 1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar (or white vinegar)
  • 1 teaspoon honey (optional)

Directions:

  1. Add peppers, garlic, salt, bay leaf and water to a pot and simmer on medium until peppers are soft and air is spicy (you’ll know what I mean).
  2. Allow to cool and blend in a blender (bullet blender works best) with vinegar until smooth. You may need to add more water. This mix will thicken in the fridge, so remember that for your consistency.
  3. Taste for salt. You may want to add a little local honey to cut the tang. It won’t make it sweet – if anything it adds some savory notes.
  4. Pour in clean jar(s) and seal air-tight. Allow flavors to meld for 3 – 5 days before use for best results. Keeps refrigerated for 2 – 3 week. You can also freeze or can this sauce to have year-round!

Notes: this hot sauce will separate over time. Just give it a shake before using. If it really bothers you, you can add 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum during blending to emulsify the sauce.

Want the real deal? Try lacto-fermenting your peppers instead! Follow the procedure here in our Lacto-Fermentation Recipe and skip the cooking – just ferment and blend! This is a more traditional hot sauce – it should still be refrigerated, but will keep several months.

This Week at the Farmer's Market

This Week at the Farmers Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Covington Farmers’ Market weekly newsletter by Charlene LeJeune:

Hope you had a restful Labor Day, friends! I hope you’re ready for a scrumptious Wednesday; I sure am! A refreshing glass of jasmine tea is so welcome on these last days of summer. But, don’t stop there, a serving of Kandy’s most awesome shrimp cream cheese rolls will make you smile all day long. Fresh eggs (Double K), fresh eggplant (Mr. Houston) Now what?? Simple. Finely chop 1 small yellow onion in 2 tbsp olive oil. Add 2 eggplant (or more if small), diced and seasoned with salt and pepper, then fry until golden brown. When almost done add a few dollops of goat cheese (Huckleberry Fred’s has a wonderful selection. Hope you got some on Saturday.) Fry 4 eggs in a separate pan and serve on top of your eggplant. For added flavor, try a sprinkling of Johnny’s Cajun Spice (Bhakti Farms).

photo from Happy Flour at the Covington Farmers Market

Corey is smoking chicken and ribs for this week and serving them with his wonderful cole slaw. Tomato tart will be on the table at the French Stall and Jerome is also preparing Ratatouille and the amazing Madeleines. Henderson’s is not only a great place to find baking (you gotta try the shortbread) and soup mixes but they also offer roasted nuts — almonds, pecans, cashews, peanuts, lightly coated in cinnamon sugar and absolutely perfect for snacking.

Asian Eggplant from GROW.farm

The jammin’ music of The Farmers’ Market String Band will greet you from the gazebo as we slide into Saturday. Get out early, grab your coffee and take a stroll around the market. Lots of eggplant to be found, suitable for slicing, roasting, and topping with a bit of pasta sauce from Jennifer. Ross will be out there with duck meat and it occurs to me that I did not include that recipe last week. Oops! Sorry about that! I did include it this week.

As you stroll around the market, you’ll see there are so many things to enjoy. I found some amazing baby corn pickles at Stacey’s. She has them pickled with mustard seed, peppercorns, and celery seed —you know, the traditional stuff —but also “burled” in crab boil. Wow! That’ll wake up any so-so dish! New to the market Jim’s Low-Carb Sweets & Treats. He has some wonderful treats like peanut butter cups and chocolate coconut balls. He also makes a fabulous cauliflower crust. It would really make a nice pizza crust but I found it also makes a great sandwich whether you cut it into “slices” or use it as a wrap! I’ll bet it would make amazing “crackers”, just cut into small triangles or squares and bake until crisp. Then dip into some of Tessier Gourmet’s Spinach Artichoke dip or Abeer’s hummus (she will be at the Saturday market) or Norma Jean’s walnut pâté or Happy Flour’s basil pesto.

New vendor 3 Js Jerky

Gerard and Judy (Serenity Lane) have a delightful selection of essential oil blends. They also have some recipes that use a very high quality brand of CBD oil — great for inflammation! While you’re over there, grab some sausage or chops or hamburger meat from Jubilee Farms. The weather has been cooling a bit so grilling some green onion or Italian sausage would be a treat! Sittin’ outside…sippin’ on a bottle of Nancy’s kombucha or one of Amanda’s fresh juices…sausage/burgers on the grill…some of Nancy’s kraut or Aminta’s microgreens waiting to top ‘em off, sautéed mushrooms (James) on the side…I’m happy! And, for dessert, check out the wonderful pies and cobblers that Althee has been making or some of Rose’s sweet pralines. Heaven! So you see, 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

Check out our Facebook page – facebook.com/thecovingtonlafarmersmarket
On Instagram — @covingtonlafarmersmarket

Pasture-raised duck from Backwater Foie Gras

Roasted Duck Breast

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1.8 lb duck breasts (4 duck breasts)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, can use more, to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  2. Score the skin of duck breasts in parallel lines or in criss-cross pattern. Generously season both sides of duck breasts (and especially add more salt to the skin side!) with at least 1/2 tsp salt.
  3. Use a large oven-proof cast iron pan, or use an oven-proof large stainless steel skillet (make sure that the pan you use has an oven-proof handle).
  4. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large skillet on medium heat until the oil is hot. Add duck breasts to the skillet skin side down.
  5. Cook the duck breasts, uncovered, for about 8 minutes on medium heat on the skin side, until the fat is released. I like to use a splatter screen to keep the oil from splattering (the splatter screen allows the heat to escape). After 8 minutes, remove the duck fat from the skillet, leaving just enough to cover the bottom of the skillet. Turn the duck breasts over to the other side (non-skin side) and cook for 2 more minutes on medium heat.
  6. Place your oven proof skillet (with duck breasts in it) in the oven (preheated to 400 F) and let the duck breasts roast for about 5 minutes, until they are medium rare.
  7. Remove the skillet from the oven (wearing oven-proof gloves to protect your hands, of course), and let the duck breasts rest for about 7 minutes before slicing them.
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

Happy Tuesday, friends! There’s a lovely day at the market for you tomorrow, full of music and fresh veggies and wonderful food. Take some time to have lunch with us. Feast on a new creation from Kandi – a shredded cabbage salad with shredded carrots, chicken, red onions, cilantro, mint, and Chinese cilantro all lightly seasoned with a side of fish sauce. And so tasty too! Nanette is making a refreshing watermelon gazpacho to lighten your meal. Add one of her remarkable chicken salad wraps to go. Jeff is preparing that crunchy broccoli salad that’s so delicious to go with his smoky pulled pork. Maybe a few chicken tamales would be more to your liking. Finish with a slice of lemon blueberry bread from Frankie (and save the rest for during the week). And then I suppose you do have to get back to work…heavy sigh. But wait! Don’t forget your veggies! Pick up some new potatoes and bell peppers from Mr. Houston or a few Creoles and peaches from Greg Miller. Natalie will be back next Wednesday with zucchini, cucumbers, bell peppers, and yellow squash.

I am planning for a lucky Saturday with the Lucky Dogs bouncing out their tunes from the gazebo while gentle breezes and friendly smiles sprinkle your morning. Grab your coffee and stay awhile. Norma Jean Marcon of Norma Jean’s Cuisine will demonstrate how to make the perfect Salade Nicosia using the bounty of the Covington Farmers’ Market.

Fresh picked chanterelles at the Covington Farmers Market

Fresh picked chanterelles at the Covington Farmers Market

And bounty we do have! Last week, Nick put out baskets of heirloom tomatoes – tiny orbs of yellow, pink, red, and chocolate all sharing their pint of space. There are tomatoes a plenty from JR Bardwell, John Bartlett, the Clecklers, and Greg Miller. Yes, Greg is back and he also has peaches and Chanterelles. Yippee! But he’s not the only one. Chanterelles also joined James’ lions mane, oyster, and shiitake mushrooms and I found them on Nick’s and John’s tables as well. I’ll have a new seasoning on Saturday that will take those mushrooms on a magical mushroom tour (or somewhere close to there). Or, you can try one of Spicy Lady’s seasonings. Cheryl is sure to have one to go with any veggie at the market and still keep your taste buds hoppin’.

Potato Yukon Gold from Bartlett Farm

Potato Love – Yukon Gold from Bartlett Farm

You will find many varieties of squash around the tables and I’m sure you’re looking for unique ways to prepare them. I came across a couple of sandwiches that would fit the bill perfectly. I’ll post the photos below. The first one comes from our terribly missed friends at Slice of Heaven (now inconveniently located in Oregon). Brandon and Marietta used sautéed greens, which may be a little hard to find at our market these days but sprouts (Sam) or shoots (Nick) will be a wonderful substitute. He then added cheese (Mauthe’s or Farmhouse Dairy), onions, pesto, red peppers and grilled for a very tasty veggie sandwich. Nur sautéed tomatoes and zucchini and spread her bread with hummus. You know that we have the best bread around so no matter which you choose, you will come out a winner. Each sounds so delicious and simple and you can vary the veggies to suit your tastes.

Those aren’t the only veggies gracing the tables. Mr Houston has purple bell peppers, JR has eggplant, John Bartlett has Yukon Gold potatoes (and the red ones too), Eddie has fresh garlic, Nick has cute little heirloom squash, and Natalie is back with zucchini, cucumbers, squash and more.

Screaming Oaks Mushroom Farm table last Saturday - mushrooms, blueberries & chickens!

Screaming Oaks Mushroom Farm table last Saturday – mushrooms, blueberries & chickens!

What will make your market merry? Mushrooms, raw honey, avocado salsa, Japanese maples, fresh juices, Kombucha, special treats for your pets, muffins, fresh bread, and cookies all wrapped up in a glorious Saturday morning!  I know, I know…I can hardly believe it myself. If you’re not there, you’re gonna 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 signHappy Tuesday, friends! We’re looking forward to a great day tomorrow full of music and fresh veggies and good food.  Mr. Houston’s garden has been bloomin’ with cucumbers (eatin’ and picklin’), green potatoes, squash, bell peppers, and he may even have some tomatoes and eggplant. Come and join us for a relaxing lunch. Kandi’s pan seared salmon salad and a glass of sweet jasmine tea make a perfect lunch. Bring home dinner with a pound of Jeff’s pulled pork, cole slaw, Mac N Cheese, and baked beans. Or try Nanette’s refreshing cucumber yogurt soup which will go very nicely with her summery Mediterranean salad. A Honduran hot tamale (they are pretty big), salsa and chips and you have lunch for Thursday or even Friday. And, of course, you can’t be without dessert and Frankie’s gotcha covered with strawberry dream pie or her incredible Marguerita pie. Ooh my!

Make plans to come out on Saturday and enjoy the toe-tappin’ melodies of Chris Talley coming from the gazebo. So grab your coffee or one of Sacred Earth’s new caffeine bars and enjoy the music while you do your shopping. Oh, you heard me right. Enough caffeine for a full cup of coffee, balanced with fresh herbs and oats in a scrumptious breakfast bar. Then, get ready for some barbecue because VooDoo Foods will have their rig parked on Columbia Street, ready to dish out some great BBQ. They will also have homemade Worcestershire Sauce and Twangy sauce. Not sure what Twangy sauce is but it does sound tasty doesn’t it?

Summer Squash from GROW.farm

Summer Squash from GROW.farm

I took a slow walk around the market last week and it surely has blossomed this past week. I guess it’s all the rain we’ve been having. But even a quick stroll around will reveal a treasure trove of veggies. Eddie’s Veggies table was filled with golden wax beans, Maxibell green beans, yellow zukes and banana peppers (soooo good sautéed with onions and Italian sausage and served over spaghetti – easy peasey). The Clecklers not only had tomatoes but peaches as well. I cut up a peach to add to my tea for a flavor boast. Mr. Houston told me he would have tomatoes and possibly eggplant for this week along with squash and. J.R. said he will have cherry tomatoes, potatoes, rattlesnake snap beans, zucchini, yellow & white squash, and cucumbers.  John promised bell peppers, eggplant, red and Yukon Gold potatoes, great juicing carrots, and , if you get there early, some heirloom tomatoes.

Carrots from Bartlett Farm at the Covington Farmer's Market

Carrots from Bartlett Farm at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Don’t forget about grilling! We’ve got a smorgasbord of meats and veggies that are ready and waiting for a few grill marks. Marinate your chicken in Bechac’s Roasted Garlic & Tomato Dressing for an hour or so before grilling for tender tasty chicken. YUM! Careful, a dab of goat cheese in the middle of your burgers will have you crowned Master Griller and you will be in charge of the pit from then on.

I had a chance to try Spicy Lady’s Wasabe Seasoning on Saturday and I’ll admit to a bit of trepidation since I always associated wasabe with lots of heat. It was delicious, not too hot, and I thought that it would be really great mixed with a little of Cheryl’s oils and tossed on grilled veggies, potatoes, mushrooms, shrimp, or what have you.

Breads love it on the grill. Suzie will have Spinach Feta this week which probably won’t work too well on the pit but her Health Grain bread or French baguettes toast up wonderfully, especially with a little of Vincent & Mauricio’s Skordalia spread over it. Lena’s home ground wheat breads just dying to get toasted and Crystal’s gluten free sourdough breads are sure to please even those who are not concerned about gluten. Spread some of Bear Creek’s garlic and herb butter on several slices and pop those babies on the grill. Or just toast ‘em plain and add a little Meaux Mustard for a jazzy sandwich. With four flavors – Local Honey, Creole, Green Heat, or Blueberry – you may have a tough time choosing.

Bear Creek Road Pie of the Month: Dark Chocolate Strawberry Pâté Tart with Lavender Meringue

Bear Creek Road Pie of the Month: Dark Chocolate Strawberry Pâté Tart with Lavender Meringue

You won’t want to stop there. After all, Lolly Marie is boasting those yummy caramels, white ginger truffles, and chocolate raspberry truffles plus caramel apples. There’s so much more out here – a beautiful spring breeze, delightful music, great food. What more can you ask for?

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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Market_Menu-02-18-15

Happy Mardi Gras! I hope you’re enjoying your day today and are making plans to join us for lunch tomorrow. It may not be Christmas but you can still make your list and check it twice:

Cup of cream of mushroom soup (Nanette)
Chicken salad wrap from Nanette for later in the week
Chicken porridge from Kandi for later in the week
½ lb Smoky pulled pork to chop up in my eggs for breakfast
Lemon olive oil from Nuccio’s (‘cause I’m out)
2 mini apple pies (‘cause Mr. Wonderful loves them)
Frozen stuffed peppers from Veggie Meals 2 Go (Oh! Did I forget to mention they are making their Wednesday debut) Check out the menu.
1 pint of red ripe strawberries
1 pint of Earl’s raw honey for my coffee

Ah! Aren’t Wednesdays wonderful? And Saturday will be just as wonderful with Ed Whiteman faithfully and graciously serving coffee and tea from the pavilion (thanks, Ed!), Chris Talley with lovely melodies in the gazebo, lovely fresh breezes sweeping the market, and Lola Deux pulled up to the curb on Columbia Street. Enchanting!

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 This Saturday

I don’t want to “throw” all our thrills out there at once but we have a special surprise for Saturday. Okay. Okay. I’ll spill the beans – the Covington Farmers’ Market will have its own ATM machine! I know it was supposed to be a surprise but it’s kinda like catching all your beads and dubloons in the air. You just have to shout about it!

Jasmine Aubert has created a new organic coconut “everything” soap. It cleans everything from you to your clothes. Whaaaat! Everything???!! But will it do the dishes? Yes!  While you’re over there, take a look at her shampoos – organic green tea shampoo and wild rose cream shampoo for colored and fragile hair.

I hope you had a chance to taste Bear Creek Road’s airy meringues, macaroons, and marshmallows last week. Jennifer also had a caramel pecan chocolate bar that she says will be on the menu again this week. She’s also featuring Potato Rosemary Boules and Mushroom Onion Focaccia. If you need more reason than that to get here, try a sample of Betty Rue’s new chewy, chocolaty, grain-free brownie or her chocolaty, nutty Rocky Road cookie! Sam’s Sprouts has been adding loads of new things to his sprout line. I tasted a ginger peanut butter coconut bar that was out of this world and the coconut chips are crunchy and perfect for snacking.

Bartlett Farm's own Braising Mix - fresh baby Bok Choi. Mizuna , and Tat Soi mixed and washed. Ready to go for salad or sauté or soup!

Bartlett Farm’s own Braising Mix – fresh baby Bok Choi. Mizuna , and Tat Soi mixed and washed. Ready to go for salad or sauté or soup!

Our produce vendors haven’t been slacking. Nick (Grow.Farm) has broccoli rabe, Tuscan kale, heirloom turnips and bags of mixed chards. He also has those flavorful sweet potatoes. John’s (Bartlett Farm) table includes carrots, beets, mixed bags of lettuce and beautiful floral bouquets. Mr. Houston (Father & Son Farm) has Brussels sprouts, red sails lettuce, a variety of kales, collards, oak leaf lettuce, and mustard. Ken has huge heads of cauliflower and broccoli, greens and a yellow variety of carrot that I’m told is quite sweet.

All of this is only 1 and 4 days away. Set your countdown clocks, your alarm clocks, your biological clocks, whatever clocks you have to. You 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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Blessings of the season to you, friends. Tomorrow is Christmas Eve and I know you’re all getting ready for family and friends and lots of great food. Stop by for some of Frankie’s goodies, Earl’s raw honey (makes a great gift) and fresh veggies from Mr. Houston.

Crispin Schroeder will play at the Covington Farmers Market this Saturday

Crispin Schroeder will play at the Covington Farmers Market this Saturday

Saturday will be the last market of 2014. Weren’t we just celebrating the 4th of July?  Come and enjoy a refreshing cup of coffee with us while you shop for the goodies you’ll need for your New Year’s party. Chrispin Schroeder will sing out the old year from the gazebo while Jeff and Kristen get the rig into place to smoke up some amazing pork. Make sure you get extra for sandwiches. Lena and Suzie have wonderful breads to make that sandwich perfect.

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

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

I thought we’d finish out this year with the reason you all come to the Farmers’ Market – the vegetables! A quick perusal of the tables last weekend shows that the veggies are not taking a holiday, so much the better for us. I saw the first beets of the season on John’s table along with turnips, carrots, radishes, chard, spinach, kale, tat soi, bok choi, broccoli and iceberg lettuce (sounds like we may need a little dressing too.)

Beets from Bartlett Farm at the Covington Farmer's Market

Beets from Bartlett Farm at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Dinosaur kale, collards, mustard, chard cabbage, spinach, broccoli, carrots and green onions were loaded onto Mr. Houston’s table and a few feet away Ken Savage offers huge, gorgeous cauliflower, oranges, sweet kumquats, red navel oranges, grapefruit, and satsumas. While you’re over there, check out Spanish R Us. Soriedad is baking a fantastic Tres Leche cake, almost too pretty to eat – almost. She’s making coconut flan too.  Remember to get refried beans and salsas for your party!

Baby Swiss from Grow.Farm at the Covington Farmer's Market

Baby Swiss from Grow.Farm at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Fortunately, Nick still has those fabulous Evangeline sweet potatoes. You’ll also find heirloom turnips, chard, curly mustard, flat leaf kale, and persimmons plus quail eggs. Don’t forget your New Year’s cabbage from Natalie and some strawberries too! Johnadale Farms is back again with their strawberries – we’ve got goodness all around! Dennis has pure cane syrup made from his own sugar cane fields. Stop by and check it out!

Alton and Sandra have some absolutely gorgeous camellia bushes that will not be available for long. Look over their table for the most fragrant herbs for your garden – rosemary, lemon thyme, chocolate mint and more.

We hope you’ll join us for the last market of the year. By next Saturday, a whole new year will have begun along with the hopes and plans that a new year always brings. We wish you peace and prosperity in 2015. Thank you for your patronage, your friendship, and your recipes; we look forward to another year with 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

Farmers Market Recipes

Farmer’s Market Recipe: Okra Creole

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Inspired by fresh, local ingredients found at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Okra from Grow.Farm

Okra from Grow.Farm

Ingredients:

2 cups of chopped okra (Grow.Farm)

2 large creole tomatoes, diced (Slice of Heaven Farm)

1/2 medium onion, diced

a few toes of garlic, minced

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

fresh basil (Slice of Heaven) & lemon thyme

sea salt

Directions:

In a medium sized pot heat a 1/2 cup of water with a dash of salt. Add the onion, garlic, basil and thyme, cover and cook for a few minutes. Stir in the okra and tomato, let this cook for a minute. Tomatoes cut down the “slime” produced by cooking the okra, but fresh squeezed lemon juice helps too. Add this to your liking, along with any additional salt.

 

Farmers Market Recipes

Farmer’s Market Recipe: Eggplant & Chanterelle Sautee

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Local recipes inspired by fresh ingredients found at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Sauteed Potatoes, Eggplant & ChanterellesIngredients:
6 – 9 red potatoes (Slice of Heaven Farm)
1 large eggplant (Father & Son Farm)
1/2 pound of chanterelles (Grow.Farm)
Fresh goat cheese (Farmhouse Dairy)
2 green onion stalks, chopped (Slice of Heaven Farm)
1 clove of garlic, minced
rosemary, thyme & a touch of sage
extra virgin olive oil, or other oil of choice
sea salt & white pepper

Directions:
Slice the potatoes in thick medallions and quarter. In a large saucepan, sauté 1/2 the garlic in a tablespoon of oil. Add the green onions, herbs & spices. Let simmer for a second more, until everything softens. Add the potatoes and mix, cover and let simmer on medium heat, tossing occasionally. Cook until potatoes soften. Eggplant & chanterelles

Slice the eggplant in medallions as well, but leave round. In another large saucepan or skillet heat a tablespoon of oil on medium heat. Once the oil begins to steam, add the eggplant medallions. Add the chopped chanterelles and the rest of the minced garlic around the eggplant. Flip and mix occasionally, cook until the eggplant has browned slightly on both sides.

Plate the potatoes and top with the eggplant slices. Cover with the sautéed chanterelles and garlic. Crumble with fresh goat cheese and dress with a sprig of rosemary. Enjoy!

Farmers Market Recipes Shop Local

Farmer’s Market Recipe: Summer Harvest Farmer’s Market Pizza

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Fresh recipes inspired by ingredients found at the Covington Farmer’s Market

Fresh Veggie Pizza, photo courtesy Slice of Heaven Farm

Fresh Veggie Pizza, photo courtesy Slice of Heaven Farm

Homemade Whole Wheat Crust

3 & 1/4 cups organic whole wheat flour (Bob’s Red Mill)

1 & 1/2 cups warm water

1 tablespoon premium yeast

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon raw local honey

1 teaspoon turbinado sugar (brown)

1 teaspoons course sea salt

In a large mixing bowl dissolve the sugar in the warm water (about 105 – 115 degrees F). Add the yeast and lightly stir in. The yeast should begin to foam – if it does not, it is dead, and you will have to start over with new yeast. As it foams, let sit for about 5 minutes to set.

Add the olive oil, honey and salt. Stir in the flour, mixing to avoid clumping. Mix with a large spatula until the mixture becomes dough-like.

Lightly powder a surface with flour, and place the dough in the center. With floured hands, knead the dough. Lightly dust the dough with more flour as needed. Once done, the dough should be soft but not sticky, smooth and elastic.

Shape the dough in a ball, and lightly coat with olive oil. Place in a large mixing bowl (note: the dough will rise over twice its size!) cover with a warm damp cloth and place in a warm spot, not in direct sunlight. Let sit for about 1 – 2 hours.

One risen, press down on the dough to deflate, and cut in half. Roll each half into a ball, and let sit separated for another 20 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 475 degrees.

After the dough has sat, place again on a lightly floured surface. Start by pushing in the middle of the ball, and then gradually pushing out in each direction. I like to do this by hand, but it can be done with a roller too. Shape to desired size and crust thickness. Create a lip around the edges to keep your tasty toppings in. Once shaped, brush lightly with olive oil. Your crust is now ready for toppings!

Suggested Toppings For A Summer Harvest Farmers’ Market Pizza:

Fresh Veggie Pizza, photo courtesy Slice of Heaven Farm

Fresh Veggie Pizza, photo courtesy Slice of Heaven Farm

Summer squash, zucchini, red onions, green onions, leeks & Swiss chard from Slice of Heaven Farm

Chicken & mushrooms from Screaming Oaks Mushroom Farm – James Shoop

Bell peppers & other goodies from Bartlett Farm

Tomatoes, eggplant & greens from GROW.farm

New at the Market! Emmanuel Pig Farm featuring pasture raised, aged pork

Goat cheese & feta from Farmhouse Dairy

Base: try a red sauce base from Abundant Life Kitchen, or a basil base from Basically Basil. Or go for a gourmet flavored olive oil from Nuccio’s.

Layer on your toppings and bake for 15 – 20 minutes, or until golden!

Local Events Shop Local

This Week at the Farmer’s Market by Charlene LeJeune

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Oyster Mushrooms - Screaming Oaks Mushroom Farm - James Shoop

Oyster Mushrooms – Screaming Oaks Mushroom Farm – James Shoop

Hi, friends and Happy Tuesday! We’re already gearing up for tomorrow…this rain will be gone and the sun will be shining. It will be a day to get out and enjoy that sunshine and a great lunch. The grandkiddies have already decided what they will order. I will decide when I get there.

Music will usher in our Saturday morning with the contemporary folk tunes of Reed Alleman. So grab your coffee and spend a relaxing morning with us. Chef Robert Vasquez of Opal Basil on the Trace and Café Vive will delight us with a menu that he creates from the specials he buys from our market. With all the choices before him, I’m wondering where his creativity will take him.

Will he make crepes topped with fresh fruits like peaches and blueberries or even a scoop of Althee’s new low sugar Mulberry Jelly? Personally, I’d be just as happy with Mauthe’s yogurt or cream cheese topped with any or all of those. But, delicious as that is, it certainly doesn’t require the creativity for which Chef Vasquez is known. Perhaps he will choose eggplant (yes, we will have them this week) for his canvas, roasting them with carrots, tomatoes, zucchini, yellow squash, bell peppers, and onions for a quick and easy ratatouille. Maybe he’ll really be daring and surprise us!

We have a few new vendors at the market. First, on both Wednesdays and Saturdays, Sacred Earth makes meal replacement bars. Made with organic ingredients, these bars are gluten, dairy, soy, and nut free but definitely not taste free. They are delicious. Stop by and check them out. Next, we have Emmanuel Pig Farm featuring pasture raised pork. Their meat is aged for 7 days before being frozen.

Jessica of Two Kids Farm has homemade stevia extract along with an assortment of fresh veggies. Cucumber pickles decorated Norma Jean’s table for a little while before she sold out. She says she will also feature a different variation on lentil salad each week. While you’re over there, check out the gorgeous gladiolas from Alton and Sandra. I know a bouquet of glads make certainly make me glad! (OK, I’ll stop.)

Gina and I were discussing different ways her customers use her dressings, such as using Roasted Garlic and Tomato in a shrimp salad or drizzling Bleu Cheese over roasted veggies right before they’re done and back in the oven just long enough to let the cheese melt. Our discussion turned to how nice it would be to have Angel’s artichoke stuffing to use to stuff pork chops or chicken breast. Angel said she would be happy to take orders….hmmmmm…I’m thinking Angel’s stuffing, sandwiched between thick rounds of fried eggplant, finished with a “sauce” of Bleu Cheese dressing. And then, slice up a few of Nick’s heirloom tomatoes – so exquisitely simple. They need nothing else.

I’ve been babbling on and on and haven’t mentioned a third of the delights you’ll find at the Market. You’ll just have to come out and see for yourself. Just remember to stop by and say, “hello”. Personally, I can’t wait to find out what’s new this 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

Farmers Market Recipes

Farmers Market Recipe: Pasta Prima Vera With Garden Herbs PLUS Potato & Heirloom Squash Summer Soup

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Fresh recipes inspired by ingredients found the Covington Farmer’s Market

Pasta Prima Vera With Garden Herbs

Ingredients:

Pasta Prima Vera1 lb. Mixed Summer Squash, GROW Farms

Green Onion, Slice of Heaven

1/2 onion, chopped

6 toes garlic, minced

1 tbsp. herbed olive oil, 7 Grain

1 tbsp. butter

1 tbsp. vinegar

salt, ground pepper, cayenne (to taste)

rosemary, parsley, basil (to taste)

1/2 lb. of your favorite pasta

cheese to top (optional)

Directions:

Start by heating up some water for the pasta. When the water comes to a boil, cook the pasta. In a separate pan, melt some butter. Cook the onion and garlic until translucent, then add the rest of the vegetables, oil, vinegar and spices. Stir and cook just until the veggies begin to soften. Add the cooked pasta and the minced herbs, stir again and cover to let steam a moment. Top with parmesan, feta, etc. and serve.

There are plenty of greens available for a spring salad (see last week’s recipe!) and great choices for home-baked bread from 7 Grain and Windfield Farms.

Potato & Heirloom Squash Summer Soup

Take basically all of the above listed ingredients plus potatoes to make the soup. If you would like to start with a base or boullion for the broth, that’s fine. Heat your water/broth in the soup pot. Melt the butter in a separate pan and cook the garlic and onion. Add the rest of the vegetables, oil, vinegar and spices. Once the veggies cook down a bit, you can throw it all into the soup. Bring to a boil, then simmer for a moment. I did not include the pasta in the soup, but you can add that if you wish. Turn the fire off, throw in the fresh herbs, let steep and serve.