Local Tastes Better! Fresh Asparagus, Greens, Fish, Chicken

April 13, 2012
by Pascale LeDraoulec

If you shop the farmers market then you already know what the culinary benefits are of eating local. Fruits and vegetables simply taste better when you eat them within 12-24 hours of being picked or harvested. Traveling along the highway for three days in a hot truck doesn’t do much for tomatoes and asparagus. Never mind baby spinach and mesclun. How “local” are we?

At the Chappaqua Farmers Market, we insist that all of the food sold be grown, raised or prepared within a 200-mile radius of the Chappaqua Train Station, our summer home. Technically, we are a Hudson Valley market though we do make an exception for that glorious fish which comes to us from the Hampton Bays. Under the “10 percent” rule, vendors are allowed to bring a small amount (no more than 10 percent of their display) from a nearby farm (or fishery). That explains why we occasionally sell tuna and swordfish and Nantucket scallops that don’t come from the Hampton Bays.

Eating local is a great start to leading a greener life, but there is so much more we can do. After you shop the market on Saturday why don’t you swing by the Bell School Auditorium for their extremely ambitious Green Fair. You (and your children) are guaranteed to learn something that will help protect our planet – and our farmers in the process.

Farmers like Roaming Angus who is back this week with a new item: ground chicken for healthy lean burgers now that grilling season is here.

Our favorite “vegetable” baker, Flourish is also back this week. And, great news: they will be joining us every other week once we move outdoors (May 5th!).

Clean Ridge Soap Co. has been away for five weeks. Time to restock on that Eucalyptus lotion. I keep one bottle in my car, one by my bed and one by my kitchen sink.

By the Way Bakery is also here this week, proving, once again, that gluten-free can be synonymous with delicious.

Personal Chef Maria Reina is back with a kitchen demo. This Saturday, Maria, who is now blogging for The Journal News about her farmers market-inspired recipes, will be preparing a very spring-friendly Vietnamese asparagus and mushroom soup (crab optional).

See you at the market!

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