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Winter Farmers Market and More – Coming Up

Winter Farmers Market January 7, 2012

The Second Winter Farmers Market will be held on Saturday, February 4 from 10 am – 1 pm at  the Second Congregational Church on Court Square in Greenfield. I attended last month and stocked up on beets, turnips, pears, apples, squash and Real Pickles sauerkraut. It is exciting that so much local food is available to us in midwinter. And even more exciting to know that plans are in place to give us even more local food all year long.

The February Farmers Market is the beginning of Winter Fare Week, a celebration of local food with many events planned. In addition to buying produce on February 4 shoppers will have an opportunity to attend a number of workshops.

Daniel Botkin of Laughing Dog Farm, a ‘seedy madman’ will inspire you as he shows off his favorite “open-pollinated” heirloom tomato (and other!) seeds that have inspired a decade of great gardening at Laughing Dog Farm. Dan will review the significance of “heirloom genetics” as well basic seed botany and seed saving/preserving protocols, including which ones need only to be gathered, cleaned and dried, (the “easy” ones…) and which seeds need more elaborate “isolation” and/or hand-pollination schemes. Seeds for sale and free!

Mark Lattanzi will show you how to can the delicious abundance of the summer and fall garden. Think about putting up your own local food this year.

Rachel Scherer will present Get Sauced. Did you know that condiments like “Sriracha” and “Tabasco” start with lacto-fermented chilis? That lacto-fermented fruit and vegetable chutneys are the culinary origins of ketchup and relish? This workshop will cover the basics of making lacto-fermented condiments at home, and the details of how to go from the general process to a custom recipe.

Annie Sullivan-Chin with Catherine Bryars will talk about the many benefits of composting and how to make it feasible in your home. Conversation topics include soil science fundamentals, how to get/build buckets and bins, troubleshooting a lazy compost pile, and a special show-and-tell about worm composting. Participants are encouraged to bring questions and experiences to share.

In addition to the workshops there will be a Local Food Barter Fair. How does it work? Anyone who has home-made food items items to barter will gather at 12:15 p.m. with their goods and take part in informal trading.  A great chance to meet your home-growing neighbors, practice the art of bartering, and bring home delicious food and goods without exchanging money.  Open to gardeners, gleaners, foragers, canners, dryers… even professional farmers!

I’ll be telling you about more great events coming  up the week of February 5-12.  Friends and Food. What a combo.

Gray Dog's Farm, Huntington

Gray Dog’s Farm is just one of the farms that is participating in the market. Other participants include Clarkdale Fruit Farm, Red Fire Farm that is moving to Montague, and