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September 30, 2010 | Visit the Farmers Market online at | Subscribe to Fresh Picks

News for This Saturday, October 2

Dog Day Done
Certain events at the Lansdowne Farmers Market require both a lead-up (the promotion beforehand) and a wrap-up (the summary afterward), and Dog Day is definitely one of them. Folks, it was a howl. (You saw that pun coming, didn't you?) The cuteness of some dogs was upstaged only by the immensity of others. Some dogs could do tricks, some had interesting back stories, and some dressed for the occasion. A few were looking for homes, but most had clearly happy havens already. They were all a delight. The $27 we collected in entry fees for the parade went straight to Animal Friends of Lansdowne, and the PSPCA's donation jar was doing pretty well also, thanks to the generosity of Marketgoers. All of John Kelly Green's photos from Doggywood and the parade and the whole barkin' day are available here for free download or just a couple bucks for a print. Our thanks to everyone who came and brought a pooch to share (and cleaned up after it).

High Notes
We would be remiss if we didn't take a moment to mention how gosh darn terrific the music was last week. The Musicians of the Week are nearly always really good, but last Saturday they were fantastic. First Doc Terry McGrath and friends played a mesmerizing set using guitars, mandolins, a baby accordion, maybe a hammered dulcimer, and some other metal whosie. It doesn't really matter what they played, just that their sound was unique and uplifting and pulled a crowd to the periphery of the tent to get a good look. Though these guys were a really hard act to follow, Cassandre Xavier then stepped up to the microphone with just a guitar and a voice that belongs on a much bigger stage and knocked the crowd out once more (and she'll be returning to do so again on October 16!). We were in several conversations that day about how great the music at the LFM is, and we couldn't agree more. Thanks once more to Bob Beach, who does a heck of a job with his music budget of zero dollars. Perhaps a "Live at the Lansdowne Farmers Market" CD is in our future...

Coming Soon
One event that needs plenty of lead-up is the LFM's Fall Festival, which is Saturday, October 23. Along with some fun things for the kids and a simultaneous Community Day (applications come out next week), Fall Festival is host to the Sweet Endings dessert contest, which is a great opportunity to show off your kitchen skills. Okay, so Mikia Moore has won two years in a row with her super delicious pies. That doesn't necessarily mean she's going to win this year. She could slip up and accidentally use salt when she intends to use sugar, or she might be out of butter at a crucial moment, or perhaps the fruit she chooses isn't quite ripe enough. Practically anything can happen. Plus, if she wins again this year, she will be retired as reigning queen of Sweet Endings so someone else can have a moment in the spotlight. So don't worry about Mikia, as good as she is, and just start thinking about what you'd like to make and enter (just FYI, pies have won two years in a row , which could mean that pies have an advantage or that the judges will be looking for something else this year; who knows). Remember that you need to include two ingredients purchased at the Market; that entries will be judged on flavor, appearance, seasonality, and originality; and that it costs $5 to enter. The full rules and application are here, and next week we'll tell you about the auction and where the money goes. Judges will be Mayor Jayne (it's good to be mayor!), Mike Nelson from Fruitwood Farms, one member of the LFM committee to be named, and a randomly selected newsletter reader who sends us an email. We'll let you know who the reader judge is right here on October 21. So get thinking, get planning, get cooking.

Also, since not everyone seems to have the right information about the LFM's schedule, let's be clear: the Market runs every Saturday through the end of October (that's Saturday, October 30, this year), then takes a couple of weeks off and returns for our special, bonus pre-Thanksgiving Market on November 20, for which all vendors -- regular and alternating -- are invited to participate, so it'll be a full house.

Market News
Alternating vendors this week are Bone Appetite Barkery (which was pretty well cleaned out after Dog Day), MyHouse Cookies (fall pies are now available!), and To You, From Me from the Soap Group. You may have noticed that MiniTreats wasn't there last Saturday. John had had a really rough week and was forced to cancel Friday afternoon, so we weren't able to include that information in the newsletter. Hope the unexpected lack of chili and pot de cremes didn't make your week really rough too. By way of apology for his unannounced absence, John will be offering frozen quarts of chili this week for a dollar off, or $8 rather than the usual $9. Bonnie's Wondergardens has had some really fabulous hanging baskets and plantings for fall the past few weeks, including mums, hibiscuses (hibisci?), and some fancy wandering Jew baskets that quickly wandered off with Market shoppers, so be sure to stop there if you want to add some color and life to your garden, now that it's finally decided to rain occasionally.

Harvest Local Foods should have its first fall organic broccoli at the Market this week, as well as organic pie pumpkins, tomatoes, chard, fennel, radishes, fresh turnips with greens, and their usual wide selection of lettuces, potatoes, onions, dairy products, meats, and pantry items. And though they'll have fresh mozzarella Saturday, when the tomatoes end in a week or so, the mozzarella will end too, so enjoy it now!

Ode to 'Maters
Of all the summer bounty that's fading fast, the one many of us will miss the most is the tomatoes. So grab a big basket at the next Market and first try making tangy and sweet tomato jam (yes, you read that right -- jam), which is perfect over grilled shrimp, pork chops, or chicken wings, or as a cracker topping when paired with cream cheese. The NY Times' inimitable Mark Bittman kicks the normally savory tomato into the stratosphere with lime juice, sugar, ginger, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, salt, and jalapeño peppers to create an unbelievably delicious way to use up the last of the summer crop. Then make oven candied tomatoes with no sugar added. The recipe from The Splendid Table's Lynne Rossetto Kasper is super easy. Use as a substitute for sundried tomatoes or slap some drained tomatoes on toasted French bread with goat cheese, add to an antipasto spread, or toss into a green salad with sliced Italian cold cuts or cheeses, shaved slivers of Parmesan or Romano cheese, and a simple vinaigrette. Use the olive oil from the jar as the base for a pasta "sauce" -- gently cook some chopped garlic in the olive oil, toss in some chopped candied tomatoes and cooked pasta and top with Pecorino Romano cheese. Yum! A riff on that theme is to add cubes of roasted butternut squash to the mix and, with sage leaves crisply toasted in the oil, it's to die for over any pasta. Don't let this summer bounty slip away without one last hurrah!

Fair Deal on Books
Sure, it's only the beginning of fall, and we're just starting to get geared up for Halloween, but if you know of a young person that's going to end up on your holiday shopping list, here's an opportunity to get a head start on your gift shopping. The Lansdowne Friends School is set to hold its Annual Book Fair next week, giving you the chance to pick some excellent reading materials from a wonderful collection of literature for children. The Book Fair takes place Wednesday and Thursday, October 6 and 7, in the LFS Meeting House, located on the school grounds at 110 North Lansdowne Avenue. Hours are 3:00 pm to 8:30 pm on Wednesday and noon to 8:00 pm on Thursday.

New Face
So, how many of you recognized Joe Heath as last week's Face of The Lansdowne? Wasn't that a great photo? Made you want to know Joe if you don't already. Well, if you don't know Joe, maybe this face will be more familiar (and we promise you that you'll recognize next week's -- stay tuned). Everyone seems to be in agreement that the Faces campaign is a really clever and interesting way to get the word out about saving the Lansdowne Theater. Kudos to the Historic Lansdowne Theater Corporation for coming up with advertisements we look forward to seeing!

MAP The Lansdowne Farmers Market takes place every Saturday from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm in the parking lot next to 28 North Lansdowne Avenue, rain or shine.

Visit our sister market, the Oakmont Farmers Market, Wednesday afternoons in Havertown for more local produce, bread, meat, and other products.

Featured This Week

Artist of the Week: Don't stand still for too long in the Sisters' Art booth this Saturday or you might come out covered in grouted glass and tile. Sisters Melannie, Robyn, and Pam Huber have already made mosaics on tougher stuff, including bowling balls, so they're up to the task. Their work is colorful, clean, and brightens any space indoors or out.

Musician of the Week: London-born Rupert Wates has been a professional songwriter for almost 20 years, but only in the last decade has he developed his skills as a singer and performer. Now based in New York, Rupert tours the eastern half of the U.S. just about nonstop with his witty, worldly tunes.


Upcoming Local Events

Movies at Cinema 16:9
Troll 2, Best Worst Movie, The Extra Man, The Lady Vanishes
Call or go online for times and ticket prices
35 N. Lansdowne Avenue; 484-461-7676

Minas Duo Concert
Monday, October 4, 12:30 pm; Free
Swarthmore College

Book Fair at the Lansdowne Friends School
Wednesday, October 6, 3:00 to 8:30, and Thursday, October 7, 12:00 to 8:00
110 N. Lansdowne Avenue; 610-623-2548

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Ellie Moore performs.
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Bob Herre begs.
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What a 'do!

Photos courtesy of John Kelly Green.