Farm-fresh time | News, Sports, Jobs
Summer is here, and local farm stands and farmers markets are in full swing.
Eileen sets up a farm stand three days a week where the bike path crosses Route 86 toward Lake Placid. His is big.
Paul Gutmann operates a farm stand on Averyville Road in Lake Placid. His is tiny – and profits are plowed back into supporting his little farm.
There are other farms in the area, on Cold Brook Road in Vermontville, on State Route 30 towards Malone. The Tupper Lake Hub sells vegetables from its farm in St. Lawrence County. Further on there are farms on the way to Potsdam.
And farmers’ markets are booming. The Saranac Lake and Keene weekend markets attract a few thousand shoppers each week. Others, in Lake Placid and Tupper Lake, are smaller.
Everyone wins at the farmer’s market. Consumers win because they get fresh, local produce. The community wins because our marketplace is a community experience. The planet benefits because fewer natural resources are used for trucking and packaging.
Products shipped across the country in refrigerated trucks lose both taste and nutritional value by the time they arrive at the supermarket. Fresh, local produce has much better flavor and more nutrients. Farmers win because buying local supports our farmers and our region’s economy.
We meet friends. We build relationships with farmers. Our dollars stay in our community. People shop at local stores and eat at local restaurants. The whole planet also benefits, because buying local saves gas and packaging.
It’s summer! Plan your weekly menu around seasonal local produce found at farm stands and your farmers market.
Chicken supper with vegetables and potatoes
I made this on Thursday with ingredients from the Farmer’s Market and Eileen’s Farm Stand.
10 to 12 small new potatoes
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 tablespoon olive oil or other cooking fat
2 chicken breast fillets
Salt, black pepper, turmeric
About 4 oz. mushrooms
4 small carrots
1 small head of broccoli
1 or 2 Hokkaido turnips
Half a dozen garlic scapes
A little basil
Brush the potatoes, place them in a saucepan, cover with water, salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook until tender when pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes.
While the potatoes cook, heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken pieces; sprinkle both sides with salt, pepper and turmeric; cook about 3 minutes on each side. Put aside.
Peel and dice the onion, add the cooked chicken to the pan; lower the heat and cook, covered, over low heat for 3 minutes. Clean and slice the mushrooms; add to skillet.
Wash and slice the carrots; add to skillet. Rinse broccoli and cut into florets; add to skillet. Rinse and slice or chop the turnips; add to skillet. Slice the stems into 1-inch pieces and add. Season with basil. Place the chicken over the vegetables to finish cooking.
When everything is tender, drain the potatoes and serve with chicken and vegetables. Add seasoning if necessary.
Pan-fried new potatoes and potato chips
1-2 tbsp butter
2 cups potatoes
1/2 teaspoon of salt
3-4 cups snow peas
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
Remove the strings from the peas. In a large skillet, melt some of the butter. Beat the eggs with a little water and/or milk until frothy. Pour into pan, tilt pan to spread evenly, and cook until set (or flipped). Remove to a plate and set aside.
In the same skillet, melt the remaining butter. Peel (optional) and cut the potatoes into thin slices, add them to the pan, sprinkle with salt, cover and cook over low heat for about 5 minutes. Peel and dice the onion, stir into the potatoes and cook for another 5 minutes or until the potatoes are almost tender.
Cut the cooked eggs into strips. Add the snow peas, herbs and eggs to the skillet and cook, stirring, for another 2 to 4 minutes. Serve hot with a green salad for a light dinner or lunch.
Garlic Summer Squash with New Potatoes and Ham
Garlic scapes add flavor to this dish.
2 teaspoons of butter
1 cup red-skinned potatoes, cut into half-inch cubes
2/3 cup garlic scapes, sliced
1/2 teaspoon of salt
2 green onions, sliced (or a large one)
2 cups diced yellow summer squash
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 cup diced ham
grated parmesan cheese (optional)
Melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Scrub the potatoes and cut them. Add to the pan, along with the salt, and stir. Add the garlic scapes, cover and cook for about 5 minutes. While the potatoes cook, chop the green onions and summer squash, add, stir and cook for another 5-10 minutes, until the potatoes are tender.
Chop the parsley and add it along with the ham, cook for another 2-3 minutes to warm through. Serve hot, sprinkled with grated parmesan, if desired.
(Author of award-winning cookbook “Garden Gourmet: Fresh, Fabulous Meals From Your Garden, CSA, or Farmer’s Market,” Yvona Fast lives in Lake Clear and has two passions: cooking and writing. She can be found at www.yvonafast.com and reached at [email protected] or on Facebook at Words Are My World.)