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It’s Summer, Eat Local!

June 27, 2009
Pumpkin Ridge Flowers

Pumpkin Ridge Flowers

I have to admit to a passion for fresh, local food, and summer is the time when it is easy to find in Philadelphia. Farm to City, is a Philadelphia based program which brings locally grown organic and IPM produce and products from pastured animals to Farmer’s Markets around the city. Each market is opened only one day a week, so it is necessary to remember which day is market day in your neighborhood.

Weaver's Way Farm Produce

Weaver's Way Farm Fresh Produce from Mt Airy

The Chestnut Hill Growers Market takes place on Saturday mornings until 1:30 PM on Winston St between Germantown Ave and Mermaid Lane. Here you will find several vendors providing local produce, including some from the Weaver’s Way Co-op Farm located just a few miles away in E Mt Airy.

Fresh ripe tomatoes in June

Fresh ripe tomatoes in June

Market offerings will change from week to week. On the last Saturday of June I found early and cool weather green vegetables including peas, and lettuce, some fruit including blueberries, and my favorite, spring rhubarb. It’s too early for most tree fruit, so the Fahnestock Fruit Farm was offering lovely red, ripe tomatoes which they grow in the soil but under cover. Peaches are due in the beginning of July.

Local Honey

Local Honey

Other offerings include raw, unprocessed honey. The ‘creamy’ type is so delicious, it is hard not to eat too much. Honey comes from sites throughout Pennsylvania. Locally it has been a cool and rainy June. This is not good weather for honey bees, so they have hardly made enough to sustain themselves.

Shellbark Hollow Farm offers hand crafted cheese in several varieties as well as goat products including soap. I like the Fresh Chevre which comes in mild and sharp flavors. This is a soft cheese that can be spread on crackers or added to a salad or pasta dish. Other varieties include a ricotta, and herb flavored.

Shellbark Hollow Farm

Shellbark Hollow Goat Cheese and Products

Also available at this market is pastured, grass fed beef in a variety of cuts from brisket to steak.

If you miss the market on Saturday, you will find other Local Farmer’s Markets, on other days of the week, around the city. Produce and Pastured Beefhttp://www.farmtocity.org . Selections vary from market to market, but all offer local, organic, pastured, and IPM products.

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