Saturday, August 9, 2008

Scituate Farmer's Market

As I was writing my Rhode Island Weekend Fun post for my real estate blog yesterday, I realized I had never been to the Scituate Farmer's Market. So off we went this morning. It runs from 9-12 and I had an open house at 12, so we wanted to get there as soon as it opened. I'm glad we got there early, because we got lots of good produce and goodies, and were able to take some time to talk to the vendors and farmers. It turned out to be a popular spot, with lots of regular visitors.

Our first stop was where we met Linda Couture of Butterfly Meadows. She offered samples of her homemade sauces and syrups, which I can tell you are amazing. She makes a Honey, Lemon and Lavender Syrup that is out of this world. We also picked up a Peach Chipotle Sauce that has just the right amount of smokiness balanced by sweet peach puree. Delicious.

I was starving when we arrived which was a mistake because all I wanted to do was eat everything. I decided on an Organic Zucchini and Onion Quiche. It was fantastic and I really loved that it was made with free range chicken eggs and organic vegetables. Melissa had a scrumptuous Blueberry Scone. Next time we go we'll be sure to take a little more time to speak with the owner about her products.

Next up was a pitstop at the Wildtree stand, were we met Donna. She gave us the background of Wildtree and all of the products. I can tell you I came home and used the Dill Dip Blend on my lunch and it was fantastic. It's a great blend of dill, sea salt, onion and pepper. Simple, yet so complex in flavor. I loved it.

Fresh flowers stood out as soon as we got out of the car and now we made our way over to Gayle's stand. Bright, beautiful, fragrant and fresh these flowers are directly from her backyard and all I can say is, she's got great soil. Melissa's going to bring them into her office this week to show off our find. We'll be sure to keep close tabs on Gayle's flowers thoughout the remainder of the season because we can't wait to see what she'll have next.

We then moved down to the next stand which was run by a man by the name of Alfred. He's a retiree whose home gardens provide enough fruits and vegetables to overflow his tables. We grabbed a bag each of the doughnut peaches and shiro plums. Get up there and buy them as soon as possible because they're worth the trip. Alfred appeared to really enjoy everything about being at the farmers market and particularly, offering his produce - from his yard - grown by him. To me that's the essence of localism.

Over to the White Oak Farm table where we met Roger. He had a bounty of fresh vegetables and we snatched up a Sicilian Eggplant. I find that most farmers who come to these markets always bring their best produce, which is good for us.

Right next to Roger was a young pottery artist by the name of Nidal. His pottery is colorful and imaginative and of course we bought a piece.

As we continued on we discovered Dan Tortorella and his delicious pestos. We bought the Olive Pesto but next time it'll be the Tomato Pesto for me. Dan's pestos had many levels of flavor, which I love, and he sells heads of garlic the size of baseballs. Man that's a wonderful thing this time of year. I've been pushing Melissa to make her gravy and this garlic would be perfect.

If you like salsa, then Howards Corners salsas and chilis are right up your alley. We met owners Kim and Fred and even though Kim was a 49er's fan, I still really like her goods. It's lucky for them that Fred was into the Pats or I would have kept walking! I consider myself to have a pretty good palette when it comes to food and I have the waistline to prove it. This salsa was more flavorful and chunky. The Carrot Pepper Salsa, which I bought, had a hint of sweetness with a nice crunch. I couldn't help myself and I scooped up some of their BBQ Chili as well. All I can say is football season is on the way and after talking football with Kim and Fred, all I could think about was gameday food.

Perhaps Melissa's favorite stop was Tim and Meghan's table. Melissa has been vegetarian for more than a year now so when she saw the vegan sign she fell a little bit in love. Cupcakes, cookies, brownies, pancake mix and hummus are just a few of the wonderful vegan offerings made by Tim and Meghan. We picked up some of their spinach hummus, but I'm sure she'll be going back to learn more about everything they make.

Finally we came upon Hopkins Farms. Tables full of all sorts of fresh fruits and vegetables ruled, and off to the side we found the pickled items, along with the different jams, jellies and relishes. It's going to take a long time for us to try everything, but I'm sure we'll try. We met Kathy from Hopkins, who told us a little bit about the farm itself. Also present was farm owner, Robert Hopkins. He sure knows how to grow things because he had the most produce of anyone at the market.

The story of the day was the amazing bounty that can be had in Rhode Island. I'm full of pride when I see so many people come together from all walks of life with one common interest aside from making money. Because let's face it, you're not going to make millions at a farmers market. One common thread binds them all; they love what they do. I'm happy to say we've found our new farmer's market and I'm looking forward to our next trip.


Wendie said...

I'm starting to understand the "spent sixty bucks" thing now...

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

Scituate is the closest farmers' market to me, but I make the trip to Danielson CT farmers' market most every Saturday morning, for the very best organic produce from Wayne Hansen, and great variety from Falls Creek Farm. Scituate comes on late in the season, but there are some lovely farmers there.