Category Archives: Produce

The Farmers Market in Bangor

Come visit your favorite Stonington Farmers Market farmers and vendors today at the Maine Harvest Festival in Bangor.

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Missy from Yellow Birch Farm and Matthew and Bob from Blue Hill Spoonworks. 

Avalon Kitchens is there, hawking their yummy clam chowder pies. The 44 North Coffee people are selling — what else? — coffee, and Bob Gillmor from Blue Hill Spoonworks is selling spoons.

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Megan and Melissa from 44 North

Yellow Birch Farm, Lucy’s Granola, JC Turnings and Daily Bread are also be in Bangor (hope we’re not forgetting anyone).

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Donna from Daily Bread. 

Saturday’s event was a rousing success and today’s promises to be even better. So support Maine’s small businesses and farms by starting your holiday shopping at the Maine Harvest Festival.

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Jorge from JC Turnings

It goes from 10 am to 4 pm at the Cross Insurance Center at 515 Maine Street in Bangor. There are 150 vendors — you can’t help but find that perfect holiday gift.

Farmers ask: ‘Who can I sell my land to?’

Ask any of the farmers at the Stonington Farmers Market and they’ll tell you: Farming is hard work. But it’s also a labor of love. When it comes time to retire, farmers often hate the thought of their carefully tended fields, orchards and buildings turned into a McMansion and a lawn.

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That’s the dilemma faced by Leslie Cummins and Tim Seabrook. You’ve seen them selling peaches, vinegar and cider at the Stonington Farmers Market. If you were smart, you bought some.

The Bangor Daily News interviewed Leslie and Tim earlier this week in a story titled, “Maine farmers ready to retire wrestle with succession planning.”

Leslie Cummins and Tim Seabrook own Five-Star Nursery and Orchard in Brooklin, but they are considering selling the farm where they grow apples, pears and make apple cider. They would like to sell their land to someone who would continue using it as a farm instead of developing the property.

According to the newspaper,

It’s evident that Cummins and Seabrook have poured their hearts and souls into this venture, a source of deep pride and connection to their community on the Blue Hill Peninsula. But at 70 and 69, respectively, they’re ready to step back from the hard work of their daily routines and explore the possibilities of retirement.

“We are really ready to do the next part of our lives,” Cummins said. Already, they’ve bought a small house in town, close to friends, services and amenities. Now, they’re trying to find an appropriate buyer for the farm. And it’s not easy.

“Who do we want to sell it to, some rich dude from New York?” Seabrook asked. “We’d probably lose everything we’ve built here.”

The newspaper reports a New Hampshire not-for-profit called Land For Good is helping farmers like Leslie and Tim find other farmers to buy their land.

Read the whole story here.

 

 

Mark Your Calendar for the Last Market

Was that summer that just flew by? Well, yes, and this Friday, Sept. 16, will be the last Stonington Farmers Market of the season.

Though many of our growers and crafters sell their wares at craft shows and retail outlets, Friday will be your last chance to browse them all together in Stonington.

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So stop by for some of the best local food you’ll find in Maine.

Blue Zee Renata

Buy something you can take home to remind you of your wonderful summer Downeast.

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Or do some Christmas shopping.

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Socialize with friends and neighbors.

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Buy flowers. And art.

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Or just pat the dogs. But come!

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(And thanks, in advance, for a great year!)

 

Recipe Ideas for the 2016 Harvest

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This is a great year for locally grown, organic peaches and onions. So … peach relish! Tomatoes and beans and garlic are three other stars of this season. We have a recipe for them, too.

The Stonington Farmers Market is a great place to find the latest, freshest, highest quality produce. So take advantage of the short season and stop by for peaches, onions, vinegar, tomatoes, beans, garlic and more.

You can buy produce from the Yellow Birch Farm, Blue Zee Farm, Haight Farm, Old Ackley Farm and 5 Star Nursery & Orchard (forgive us if we left anyone out — the webmaster is new). And you can get lots of lovely garlic from Libra Farms.

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Here’s a recipe from Epicurious for peach relish:

4 medium peaches, about 1 1/2 pounds, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch-wide slices

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup cider vinegar

1/4 teaspoon hot red-pepper flakes

1 small red onion, halved lengthwise and sliced crosswise 1/8 inch thick (1 cup)

3/4 teaspoon salt

Combine peaches, sugar, vinegar, and hot pepper flakes, and briskly simmer, uncovered, until liquid thickens slightly, 15 to 20 minutes. Stir in onion and salt and simmer for 5 minutes. Relish will continue to thicken as it cools.

And here’s a recipe for Braised Tomatoes with Green Beans and Garlic adapted from Food and Wine:

2 tablespoons vegetable oil, preferably canola

1 large onion, thinly sliced

12 garlic cloves, 6 minced

1 1/2 teaspoons sweet paprika

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 1/2 pounds green beans

One pound tomatoes, diced and seeded

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a large, deep skillet, heat the oil. Add the sliced onion and cook over moderate heat until translucent, about 8 minutes. Add the minced garlic, paprika and cayenne pepper and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the green beans and 6 whole garlic cloves and cook for about 2 minutes, tossing to coat the beans.

Pour the diced tomatoes and their juices into the skillet and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover the skillet and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the green beans are very tender, about 40 minutes. Season the braised green beans with salt and pepper. Transfer them to a platter and serve warm or at room temperature.

Eat a Peach or 12

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Take heart, peach lovers! Last year’s dismal crop of pithy, tasteless peaches is behind us.

This year, coastal Maine is flooded with a bumper crop of sweet, juicy peaches. You can buy them from 5 Star Nursery and Yellow Birch Farm at the Stonington Farmers Market on Fridays between 10 a.m. and noon.

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Leslie Cummins and Tim Seabrook from 5 Star Nursery in Brooklin

Peaches from 5 Star Nursery and Yellow Birch Farm are certified organic. They’re the Reliance variety, a small, sweet peach that grows well in coastal Maine and rarely gets pithy. (Reliance = reliable, get it?)

Since it’s grilling season, here’s a suggestion from Martha Stewart for cooking peaches al fresco:

Toss peach halves with a little bit of lemon juice, brown sugar, and vanilla extract and put them in a foil packet on the grill to become caramelized and tender. Serve the warm peaches with vanilla ice cream, and enjoy any leftovers with yogurt for breakfast.

Or, you know, you could just eat a peach.

 

Be Smart. Buy Blueberries.

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Don’t let the summer go by without buying some healthful Maine wild blueberries at the Stonington Farmers Market. There are only three more Fridays until the market ends, and the blueberries are going fast!

You can’t get these babies just anywhere. Wild blueberries are unique to eastern Maine, because of its rocky acidic soil and cool climate.

The wild blueberry is smaller and sweeter than its cousin, the high-bush blueberry. A Mainer will tell you high-bush blueberries are just wrong.

Blueberries Make You Smarter

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Renata Scarano of Blue Zee Farm

All blueberries are rich in antioxidants, which can help prevent disease. But wild blueberries have twice the antioxidants of high-bush blueberries.

New studies also suggest blueberries can improve memory in older adults.

Even when frozen, blueberries are still an excellent source of antioxidants. That’s why you want to order organic wild Maine blueberries in bulk from Blue Zee Farm. Talk to Renata Scarano about ordering some on the next Friday you’re at the Stonington Farmers Market. Renata runs the Blue Hill organic farm with her husband Mark and little girl Julia.

If you can’t make it to the Stonington Farmers Market, you can call Blue Zee at (207) 374-9976.

Blue Zee blueberries

Sweet Peppers

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Sweet peppers are in season at the Stonington Farmers Market this Friday from 10AM to Noon. Get them at MOFGA certified Blue Zee Farm on the main aisle halfway down the hill. We’re told these sweet peppers are wonderful split open and cooked on the grill with a touch of olive oil and salt.

Friday Fun at the SFM

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We thought you’d enjoy a slideshow of the Stonington Farmers Market, open rain or shine on Fridays in season from 10AM to Noon. Please make us your Maine market!

Big Dipper

 Haight Farm at the Stonington Farmers Market has hydroponically grown greens and other items plus home made vinegars and dipping oils. Come down Friday from 10AM to Noon to taste a sample of the dippers.

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Purple Reign

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Be sure to check out Richard’s purple locks at Libra Woods. Purple looks as good on him as it did on the late great artist Prince. But you’ll also want to check out the garlic scape mini-wreathes which work well on your 4th of July grill. Come down to the Stonington Farmers Market today from 10AM to Noon and stock up.

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