Fresh Picks

September 19, 2013 | Visit the Farmers Market online at | Subscribe to Fresh Picks

MARKET NEWS for this Saturday, September 21

The Fall

And just like that, we're well into the double digits of September, and the evening air can raise a goosebump or two with no effort. Fall officially starts with Sunday's autumnal equinox, meaning it's time for a reminder that we're down to only six Markets left in the regular season (seven with the bonus pre-Thanksgiving Market in November). Time for some reflection: What did you do with the 17 Markets that have passed? Did you use them wisely? Were you "all in" -- a Market regular who shops and eats and enjoys the music every week you're in town? Were you more of a dabbler, occasionally stopping by for an hour of shopping and socializing before moving on to other pressing plans? Or did you largely opt out, finding other things to do to occupy your Saturday mornings and coming by the Market only a couple of times at the behest of a friend or neighbor, if at all? (You know who you are.) Whatever your habit has been, it's important to acknowledge that more than two thirds of the season is now past, gone, kaput, so if you've been mostly opting out (horrors!) but for some reason still read this newsletter, your time to enjoy your local farmers market is running out for 2013. And if you're a regular, you need to start thinking about what you'll do with your Saturday mornings just a few weeks from now. We're sure that T he Regency Café, The Avenue Deli, and Vinyl Revival have some good ideas for you. (Yes, once-monthly Winter Markets will kick in in December, but more on that later.)

I and Love and Soup

Last week we asked you to tell us what your single favorite product is at the Lansdowne Farmers Market. Not surprisingly, we got a variety of answers, and since we don't have much else to write about, here they all are: garlic bacon from 1732 Meats, sweet corn from Fruitwood Farms (two votes), vanilla cupcake (and cupcakes in general) from Cupcakeology, blueberries, soap from Spotted Hill Farm, cinnamon bread from Great Harvest, chèvre and rosemary fig spread from Taste Artisanal Market, sour cherries, cheese from Creative Shepherd Farm, knife sharpening, bread from Regency Café, and the winner, with four votes (not that it was a competition), John's MiniTreats mushroom soup. That soup came out on top the last time we asked this question too, maybe three years ago; it may have to be retired to the LFM Hall of Fame next time to give something else a chance.

And It Spread

A lot of cancellations landed in our in-box this week, people, so Saturday's lineup is down to The Avenue Deli, Golden Valley Farms Coffee Roasters, Penns Woods Winery, Spotted Hill Farm, Taste Artisanal Market and Creative Shepherd Farm. John and Kira's and Take Me...Bake Me/Mompops just let us know that they're taking this week off, returning the first Saturday in October, and as far as we know, FreshaPeel Hummus is still on hiatus from our Market.

This is a great week to stock up on cheese that wants to be smeared rather than cut, which is so handy for the sort of impromptu al fresco dining (or at least snacking) that the recent cooler weather invites. Just take a bottle of wine, some bread and fruit, and spready cheese out back or to a nearby park, and you have a perfect early fall meal. Each time Sebastian of Creative Shepherd Farm has come to Lansdowne, he's brought a different variety of flavored spreadable cheeses, and they've all been yummy. Some has herbs and garlic, some has berries, some is plain. Try folding globs of the savory or plain stuff into scrambled eggs, and smear the berry cheese on apple slices (kids love that).

Meanwhile, across the aisle, Taste Artisanal Market has two different jarred cheese spreads that are both on the deluxe and gourmet end of the spectrum -- the chèvre and rosemary fig spread that someone above mentioned as their favorite Market item, and a marinated asiago spread that has many delicious uses beyond bread and crackers -- pasta, tuna salad, hoagies, stuffed mushrooms, you name it. Both of these vendors will give you taste samples, and then you can enjoy the cheese without cutting it, so to speak.

Other notable spreadables at the Market include the fruit butters at Schobers, the housemade jams and preserves at The Avenue Deli, and local fruit spreads at Harvest Local Foods. And if you were our Nana, you'd mix some of Fruitwood's honey with soft butter and apply that liberally to virtually anything that would hold it, and you would not be a bit sorry or guilty about that.

The Greatest Sum

A couple of items have shown up at the Market recently, which, when combined with the recent drop in temperature and a little elbow grease, add up to perfect package: pierogi. The actual equation is potatoes + flour + something in the onion family + sour cream = heaven. Pick up some supplies on Saturday and invite some friends over on Sunday before the game to make these simple, basic pierogi. The dough needs to be refrigerated for somewhere between 30 minutes and 48 hours (pretty flexible on that time, aren't they?), so you could whip that up on Saturday and stick it in the fridge and just put the 'rogi together Sunday. There are other more complicated recipes out there, but the easier you keep it, the more time you have to enjoy the results and the rest of the day. All the math related to pierogi is pretty simple, really.

Laundry Room

Please spread the word about next Saturday's Dog Day (on September 28). In addition to the adoption van and the groomers and vendors that Animals Friends of Lansdowne has invited, we'll be having the Dog Parade mid-Market, 11:30ish. Prizes will be given for Showmanship, Best Dressed, Best Trick, Best Poser, Best Smile, Best Kisser, Funniest, and Best Use of Tail, so you have a week to practice in those categories.

If you emailed in or posted your favorite Market item on Facebook when we asked last week, be sure to stop by the Manager tent and pick up your Market Buck for the contribution. This week's Market Buck is much harder to get. Recognize the relationship between the headings in this newsletter and you will have earned both the Buck and our respect (musically anyway). Email in your guess or tell us at the Market. There is only one correct answer.

We know this record is starting to sound old, but the Market is in desperate need of help with set-up and breakdown yet again. No fewer than four of our regular volunteers are off this week, so if you've been tempted to do this or just became struck by the urge to show support for the Market this very minute, this week definitely would be the time. Setup is at 7:30 and breakdown starts at 1:00. Both are surprisingly fun, really! (With about 100 of each under our belt, we can speak with authority on this.) Big thanks to Rachel Haydon for being our surprise guest help last week and performing like an old pro.


Artist of the Week

Karen Grasso, of Grassroots: Homegrown Handcrafts & Needlework, has been coming to the Market as both a shopper and an artist for several years. We love her way of producing useful and pretty items for the home and self, often using dribs and drabs of yarn leftover from larger projects. She's added serious scarves and wraps to her line, so there's definitely some new stuff to see.

Musician of the Week

Bob has lined up a double bill this week of Americana artist Marc Singer and saxophonist C.C. Crabtree. (And once more the newsletter has almost nothing to offer on the musical acts; sorry.)



Free Electronic Waste Recycling
Presented by Pennsylvania Resources Council
Saturday, September 21, 9 am - 1 pm; free
Highland Avenue Parking Lot
No large appliances or items with freon, please

Park Day at Hoffman Park
Sponsored by Lansdowne Borough
Saturday, September 21, 1:00 - 4:00 pm; Free
Games, prizes, moonbounce, and more
Call 610-284-1493 for information

Lansdowne Folk Club presents North Sea Gas and David Falcone
Thursday, September 26; 7:30 pm, $15/$18
Twentieth Century Club, 84 S. Lansdowne Avenue

Harvest Tea at the Simpson Gardens Dining Room
Saturday, September 28, 1:00 pm; $15
84 N. Lansdowne Avenue
Reservations and info: 610-623-1514

Rhyme, Rhythm and Reason with Mike Cohen
Poetry and open mic at Regency Cafe
Sunday, September 29, 2:00 pm; free
29 N. Lansdowne Avenue
More info:

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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.

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