Pizza + Beer = A Night Out for Local Foods

Pizza + Beer = A Night Out for Local Foods!

Join us for a night of local food with pizza from Embers Bakery and a great selection of beer from Garrison City Beerworks!

August 20th
5:30PM at Garrison City Beerworks
455 Central Ave., Dover
3 course dinner with locally sourced pizza and beer pairing
$35 per person

What’s for Dinner?

White Vegetarian Pizza paired with the Synapse Pale Ale.

This pizza is light, colorful, and crispy, highlighting in-season veggies from Brandmoore Farm and featuring a drizzle of balsamic reduction. The Pale Ale with this course (double dry hopped with Mosaic hops) showcases blueberry and citrus notes balanced with a light crisp body.
The Short Creek Special with the Equilateral IPA

Our second course pizza is spicy, savory, and scrumptious. It features cured meats from Short Creek Farm, with a sprinkle of leeks and layer of heirloom tomatoes to give a pop of brightness. The paired IPA is medium bodied with bright and juicy with pineapple notes and orange zest.
**Vegetarian option available**
A special Dessert Pizza paired with the Horachata Box and Whisker White Stout

Our dessert pizza is sweet, fresh, and bright. This pizza will feature a butter-baked pizza dough topped with local mixed berry puree, local blossom honey, and a homemade whipped cream. Our final beer pairing for this course is the Horachata Box and Whisker White Stout. This beer is very pale in color, has a nutty flavor with bakers chocolate and fresh brewed coffee aromatics.

Emily’s Post: Meet Cole, The Market Manager

This week on the blog, I am happy to introduce Cole Gove, the market manager for the Portsmouth Farmers’ Market. Cole is part of the staff at the Seacoast Growers Association (SGA), a nonprofit that has successfully run Farmers’ Markets since its start in 1977. The Seacoast Growers Association runs or manages a number of summer farmers markets including Durham, Portsmouth, Exeter and Dover. I was introduced to Cole in my first day at the market, and have gotten to know him better each week (especially since our tents are right next to each other).

Interestingly enough, the Portsmouth market was where Cole first became aware of this community as a whole. He was trading labor for art classes at a local studio under renovation, and met a man who worked as a furniture maker. Cole worked with this furniture maker and helped him sell his goods at the Portsmouth markets, which is where he began the gradual transition from vendor to market manager. Although Cole supports both the farmers and artisans, his real interest in the markets stems from his talent and passion for event coordination. “I see myself as someone who works for the farmers [and artists], to help them facilitate what they do”, he stated in his interview.

Cole has a certain affinity for the Dover market in particular. As a resident, he has been able to get a real sense of the intensity and the pace of this small New Hampshire city. He appreciates that Dover is traditionally known a blue-collar city, identifying that each market brings with it a certain vibe. Exeter, for example, has a very family-oriented vibe, while Portsmouth brings in a wider variety of customers.

Portsmouth, being the longest market from 8:00am-1:00pm every Saturday (rain or shine), is one of the most difficult markets to coordinate. “I appreciate that it is more of a challenge [to manage], in that there are a bunch of different people you interact with throughout the day. You can have one conversation, walk thirty feet, and enter into a completely different context,” Cole said. He takes on the role as an ambassador for the farms that are there, helping to positively represent them in each interaction with both customers and other vendors.

Cole’s favorite part of this work is his ability to meet all of the different people that attend these markets. “It is very rewarding for me to be able to meet people like the local soap makers, furniture makers and farmers. I like the idea of supporting the local economy, and localism as a general way of living,” he said. He loves supporting people who are following their dreams, and “making a living through creative means.” In other words, he is inspired by the people who choose to follow their passion, and make a living that fits who they are, regardless of the traditional career paths that are already present. This aligns closely with SGA’s mission, which is to find a way for people to actively pursue a small farm and make a living from it.

 Cole’s current projects include identifying and reaching out to new customer segments, in order to increase the general awareness of these markets to the Seacoast community. Catch him every week at the Portsmouth and Dover markets, rocking his well-known bright green t-shirt (worn for ease of recognition).

Emily’s Post: Springtime Snacks

With warmer weather coming around the corner, there is going to be a lot more opportunity to meet up with friends to enjoy the weather.  If you’re anything like my friends and I, there is no such thing as a gathering without food around.  Typically, some snacks include some sort of chip product.  Unfortunately, chips are not the healthiest snacking option because they typically are high in fat content, making them higher in calories.  I have recently discovered a yummy alternative…carrot chips!  Carrots are high in vitamin A which helps with eyesight and also contain more fiber in comparison to a potato chip.  Carrot chips are easy to prepare and make, and satisfy that chip craving.

Here’s how to make them:

Ingredients

  • 2 large carrots
  • ½ teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt

 

Directions 

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Wash and peel the carrots.  Using a knife, tilt the carrot and slice diagonally making oval-shaped pieces.  The thinner the slice, the crispier the chip will be.
  3. In a bowl, toss the carrot slices with the olive oil and sea salt until evenly coated.
  4. Lay the carrots on a lined cookie sheet.
  5. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the carrots are crisp.

This is such an easy way to get your salty chip craving fix while not putting extra fat and calories into your body.  You can modify this recipe and use it with other root vegetables.  Pair your homemade chips with your favorite dip and you will be ready to have a healthy springtime snack!

When Food becomes like a Pet

When, like I do, you have a bit of a penchant for projects, sometimes your food starts to feel oddly like a pet – or at least something that is monitored and cared for on a daily basis until finally you get to enjoy the ‘fruits’ of your labor!

There have been a few ill-fated trial runs with my own yeast starter, a passable-but-not-great hard apple cider experiment, an endless array of pickled this and thats, a fermenting box built specially for black garlic and gelled egg yolks… and now, my own brined corned beef.

It turns out my significant other loves meat. So, in my love for him I got a little too enthusiastic about a recent NYT Cooking headline, “What if You Could Make Great Corned Beef?” Well, what if I could… that sounded like a challenge and a perfect opportunity to deliver the delicious meat he loves and and have the project-based cooking and social time I enjoy (dinner party, anyone?).

Step 1: Find the Meat

Brisket, which is the cut of meat called for in making corned beef, can be a bit harder to source locally than some others, especially on short notice. Be sure to call around to local beef vendors before heading to the farm or market so that you are not disappointed. If everyone seems to be fresh-out, source from a reputable butcher that can work in higher quantity and therefore get the cuts you need faster. You should still call ahead. We recommend our friends over at MEat in Kittery!

Step 2: Oh yea, those other tricky ingredients 

There’s always that one ingredient or one piece of cooking equipment that just trips you up. For this recipe, it was the curing salt. after some phone calls and online shopping, I’ll admit that I decided my best bet was to order an appropriately sized and priced baggy of curing salt from Walmart. Then cue Superstorm Stella…. the salt didn’t come in time, but thankfully it wasn’t vital to the recipe. Looks like I will have plenty for next year..

Step 3: This is where I spend more time with my meat than with my dog

And now the brisket is like a part of the family, or maybe more like an inconsiderate guest. It’s taking up more than its fair share of fridge space and pantry supplies and has the audacity to need turning every day for 5-7 days before I spend 4 hours cooking it to perfection… to be devoured in 20 minutes.

We are four days in and holding strong… here’s hoping that Saturday evening reveals a delicious home-corned beef brisket for a late St. Patricks Day celebration!

 

Get inspired yourself with the recipe: What if You Could Make Great Corned Beef?

What’s next you ask… Authentic Sauerbraten for Easter... another brined meat!

Bone Broth on a Bone-Chilling Day

It’s winter again here in New Hampshire and absolutely bone-chilling cold outside.

I’m taking advantage of some time cooped up in the house due to cold and (impending) snow to catch up on long-overdue office work and to strike a few things off of my kitchen to-do list. By this evening I will be defrosting about 20 gallon bags of tomatoes in my bathtub for some canning… in the meantime, I am warming up with some bone broth!

Bone Broth has become all the rage the last couple of years, but it’s also just known as good ole’ fashioned stock made from vegetables or meat bones and simmered for an impossibly long time on low heat. Some people advocate for drinking warmed bone broth straight from a mug – talk about bottoms up! In my house, broth is the base for many soups and stews or for starting certain pasta, rice or bean dishes. Everything benefits from a good broth.

Everything benefits from a good broth, and everyone has the ability to make it. Bone broth can be made with few resources other than some time and planning. In the days before I had a large stock pot (a gift from a friend of my parent’s who was retiring/moving), I used two smaller pots that I had for pasta or sometimes my jumbo canning pot. Bone broth is also made for the food-rescuers and scrap savers among us. You can use fresh ingredients, but broths do just as well with a roast chicken carcass from last night’s dinner, some pantry items and either on-the-edge-of-goodness vegetables and/or frozen vegetable scraps and peels that have been squirreled away in a freezer bag. You can make your broth cost $50 or more if you like, but with a little foresight and planning, your broth can be just as good at virtually no cost. 

This past weekend I took advantage of a sale at Riverslea Farm: $1/lb lamb soup bones! Below are my guidelines for warming up the house with a delicious bone broth during this final winter blast:

  1. Start with the bare bones!

Any bones will do. Use what you have, what is on sale, or what is readily available to you. In this case, I used lamb bones because.. that’s right… they were on sale. You need 3-5 pounds of bones for a good batch of broth. If you are using a chicken or turkey, simply use any leftovers and/or the carcass from a roasted bird. In this case, skip the roasting step. If you prefer vegetable broth, there are many good recipes out there. Gather what’s around the house and consider adding some less-thought-of veggies, like a head of fennel, for added flavor. I prefer to make vegetable broths in summer/early fall when the most ingredients are in season and often cheaper than other times of year.

2. Roast em’ Up

Spread the bones in a deep baking dish and sprinkle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast in an oven heated to between 400-450 degrees. I have seen recipes for broth calling for temperatures all within this range. I split the difference at 425. My bones were still frozen, so I put them right in the pan in a big frozen ball and broke them apart once they had been in the oven long enough for me to take a shower. NOTE: In my experience, this can be a smoky process. If you, like me, suffer from a poorly vented stove/kitchen and are notoriously faint of heart- be prepared. I roasted my bones for about an hour, stirring them up or turning them occasionally when things got a little smoky.

3. Transfer to a Stock Pot

This isn’t the time to be stingy. Use the biggest, heaviest stock pot you have. Transfer the bones to your stock pot and then scrape up any remaining bits from the roasting pan. Rinse with water and pour all the goodness into the pot with the bones. If you’re like me and realize your stock pot is still dirty from when you boiled maple syrup over the weekend, go clean it up while your bones roast. In my younger, poorer, smaller-kitchen, less-well-equipped days, I often used two pots for one batch so that the ingredients had some room to move around and I wasn’t overflowing the pots with liquid — it worked just fine!

4. Add What You Have, but Keep It Simple!

Remind yourself of how the tradition of broth making started in the first place… hundreds if not thousands and thousands of years ago. It was a method for using up everything available, sucking out every last nutritious morsel and leaving no waste. No special trips to the store, no buying items to add to your broth.  Keep it simple. Use what you have. I added 2 onions and 2 garlic heads that I had in the house already (skins and all), 2 whole starting-to-get-soft carrots, a pinch of whole peppercorns, a couple bay leaves and a bit of dried seaweed I found in the pantry (because why not.. but be careful, seaweed is SALTY!). If you are one of those great people who keep a frozen bag of veggies and other scraps in your freezer, now is your time to shine/gloat. Cover with a couple inches of water.

5. Patience is a Virtue

I bring my pot to a boil, then cover, reduce heat and simmer on low…. basically forever. All told, it took me about an hour and 15 minutes to get to this point, but only about 15 minutes of this time was ‘active.’ Now it’s time to set and forget. Bone broth recipes call for cooking times between 12 and 48 hours.

“48 hours!” you say!? Several recipes out there advocate for leaving your oven or stovetop on while you leave the house, go to sleep etc… I say, do what you are comfortable doing. If it’s 6 hours or 12 or 25… the end product will still be good. The longer the cook time, the more opportunity the bones have to break down and release their greatness. Add water to your pot if needed, but a covered pot should not lose volume.

6. Get Your Containers Ready… and Filled!

Go out, right now, and invest in decent freezer-safe tupperware if you do not already have some. Get it in as many sizes as you can. If it’s stackable, you get a gold star. When your broth is ‘done,’ strain out the ingredients, cool it down and ladle it into containers for freezing. This is also an opportunity for skimming. Let the broth cool in the fridge and then skim off fat if desired. If you are out of time, you can put the stock pot in the fridge for a day or two before this step. I like to ladle my broth into single serving containers that hold about 1 cup, as well as containers that hold 3-4 and also 6 cups. These are the perfect amounts for rice/pasta, dishes that call for a small amount of broth and then larger soups and stews. Label and freeze.. then use as needed!

There you have it… bone broth made on a bone chilling day and for less than $10 (actually, half that!). It’ll be keeping me warm and happy for the rest of this long, long winter!

Emily’s Post: Really Rad Radishes!

After spending every other Saturday morning at our farmers’ markets, I have been able to walk around and see what kind of produce is available.  A few weeks back, I stumbled upon a new vegetable to me – a watermelon radish.  I saw this and didn’t know what it was, so I had to learn more about it.  For those of you who have not heard of watermelon radishes, this is the blog post for you!

The outside of the watermelon radish is a green and yellow mix with light pink roots.  The inside has a distinctive fuchsia color to it.  The texture is firm yet succulent, with a mild sweet taste to it and slight peppery undertones.  The outside needs to be washed with water before consuming, but it does not need to be peeled.  It can be served fresh or cooked.  Watermelon radishes are a low-calorie root vegetable, and are high in vitamin C.

Here are some ways to incorporate watermelon radish into your diet:

  • Watermelon radish slaw
  • Pickled
  • Chopped up & added to a stir fry
  • Raw to use with dip (try my kale hummus – recipe on the blog!)
  • Add to a salad as a topping

Watermelon radishes are available now, so stop at our farmer’s market this upcoming Saturday and go try them out!

Veronique’s Post: Unleash the Quiche!

It was in a quaint café in Montreal, Quebec that I discovered my love for quiche. Was it the flaky, buttery crust? The melt in your mouth texture of the egg filling? Or was it the meaty robust flavor of the sautéed mushrooms? What I knew for sure was that brunches were never going to be the same.  A quiche is the perfect recipe for any local shopper, due to the versatility and effortlessness of the dish. You can throw in any leftover produce from your refrigerator to make an amazing quiche. Another bonus is that you can vary quiche recipes by season, for example a winter vegetable quiche! This recipe is extremely flexible, as you can replace the butternut squash or kale with any winter vegetable you can find at the farmers market.  

Serves: 4-6 servings as a main dish 

Ingredients 

  • lb butternut squash, cut into ½” cubes 

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided 

  • 1 single pie crust 

  • 1 cup diced onion 

  • oz shredded kale 

  • 4 eggs 

  • 1 cup heavy cream   

  • oz cheddar cheese, shredded 

Instructions 

  1. Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Combine the butternut squash with 1 tablespoon of the oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 20-25 minutes, stirring once or twice, until soft and browned on the edges. Remove from the oven and reserve. 

  1. Lower the oven temperature to 375ºF. Roll out the pie crust and line a 9-inch pie dish with the crust and crimp the edges. Poke the bottom and the sides generously with a fork. Spray a piece of foil or parchment paper with nonstick cooking spray and place over the pie. Add pie weights and bake the crust for 10 minutes. Remove the crust from the oven and remove the weights and the paper. 

  1. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet and add the onion. Cook until the onion has softened, about 5 minutes. Add the kale and cook, stirring, until the kale has started to wilt a little bit, another 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the roasted butternut squash. 

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the eggs and the half and half. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then stir in the gruyere. 

  1. Spread the butternut squash/kale mixture in the bottom of the par-baked crust. Pour the egg mixture over the top, spreading out the cheese if it tries to all stick together in one spot. 

  1. Bake the quiche until the top is light golden brown and a tester inserted in the center comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Cover the crust with a pie shield or foil if the edges start to get too brown. 

Adapted from Taste and Tell Blog

*Note the picture attached is a kale quiche I made this summer while working on a farm in Brewster, NY

Chloe’s Post: A Nutrition Major’s Take on Eating from Local Farmers’ Markets

As I mentioned in my introductory blog, I am a University of New Hampshire student currently majoring in nutrition. I chose this major because I always have had a passion for eating well and have always been fascinated with how we control what foods we consume! Throughout my studies, I have formed my own opinions on the food system we live in and how we should eat.

Ultimately, our food system is extremely flawed and is, in my opinion, the main cause of the obesity epidemic and the Western diseases associated with obesity (cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes etc.) The food system we live in is flawed because it promotes processed and packaged foods high in salt, sugar, fats, and chemicals rather than vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Yes, there are documentaries out there (like Fed Up) and educational resources on how to eat right (MyPlate guidelines). However, these do not seem to be working because more and more people are becoming obese. Subsidies are going to corn and livestock production rather than fruits and vegetables. It should honestly be the other way around. Instead of subsidizing the high fructose corn syrup and chicken meat that will become deep fried chicken fingers, why not subsidize fresh strawberries and lettuce?

In my opinion, the healthiest diets are those that are packed full of fresh fruits, vegetables, enough dairy, sufficient protein (mostly white meat), and whole grains. One thing I always like to think about when I go shopping for food is, ‘does that food product come with a nutritional label?’ If it does, it is more likely to contain added sugars, saturated fat, and preservative chemicals with unpronounceable names! When you go to the fruit and produce section of the grocery store or to the farmers’ market, you see that this is not the case. Fruits and vegetables do not come with a nutrition label slapped on them. If you eat as label-free as possible, then you are eating well.

This is where local farming comes into play in a major way. Most of the farms at a farmers’ market sell fresh fruits and vegetables. Staples of a healthful diet. Additionally, the produce and meats will have fewer chemicals because the farmers’ aim is not to increase the shelf life. Instead, they want to give you the freshest, most natural, and best product possible. Eating goods from a farmers’ market not only benefits you, but also benefits the local farmers, the local economy, and the environment. You can get all the major food groups at a famers’ market. Fruit and vegetables are the most popular. However, you can also get dairy from cheese producers, grains from pasta producers, and meat (protein) from butcher stands. The farmers’ market is your one-stop-shop to eating healthfully. Processed and refined goods are almost non-existent! If you are looking to eat well, just go to a local farmers’ market. They are even better than your whole foods and Trader Joe’s because those chains still have processed and packaged goods and the food is not produced locally in most cases.

Another great way to get goods from a farmers’ market is to purchase a CSA share, otherwise known as community supported agriculture share. You pay an upfront price to an individual farm and then you get a share of the harvest! It is an incredible deal because you get so much food! While the farm share is usually fruits and vegetables, there are also meat, egg, seafood, dairy, and even flower shares! For more information on CSAs and the CSAs Seacoast Eat Local is associated with, follow this link: https://seacoasteatlocal.org/find-local-food/csas/ .

 

Though our food system is flawed, farmers’ markets are one answer towards a healthier and fresher future!

 

Till Next Time,

Chloe

Emily’s Post: Getting Hummus Happy

Easy Kale Hummus

This weekend at our farmer’s market I had the pleasure of having my own table where I had samples of hummus!  I had two different types, a classic hummus and a kale hummus.  I used fresh carrots and radishes for dipping, and I must say it was a success!  It was great to promote a new way to get kale into everyone’s diet.

Kale is known as a nutrient-dense superfood.  It is low in calories yet packed with vitamins and minerals that help fuel your body.  Kale contains powerful antioxidants to help support your overall health, including beta-carotene which your body turns into vitamin A.  It is also high in vitamin K which is vital for your bone health and blood clotting.  Kale is a great source of calcium to help build up your bones and teeth.  Also, kale is high in vitamin C which helps your immune system fight off colds and infection.  In fact, one cup of kale contains as much vitamin C as a whole orange!  My easy kale hummus is another way to incorporate kale into your diet so you can be healthy and happily full.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups kale, de-stemmed
  • 1 can of chickpeas, well-rinsed and drained
  • ¼ cup + 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • ¼ cup tahini
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper

Instructions:

  1. Add everything to a food processor or blender and process until smooth
  2. Use as a dip for raw veggies or pita bread, or as a spread on a sandwich
  3. Store in the fridge in an air-tight container

Not sure you are a fan of kale-hummus?  You can use this recipe and take out the kale for a classic plain hummus alternative, or add roasted red peppers for a twist on flavor!

Chloe’s Post: Restaurants with a Local Focus: Another Way to Incorporate Local into Your Life

While going to a farmers’ market and getting your own local foods is a fantastic idea (read my previous blog post: 7 Reasons to Go to Your Local Farmers’ Market), there are other ways you can incorporate local foods into your life. One of these ways is by going to restaurants that have a local focus! Usually, this means that the restaurant gets a portion of its foods from local vendors. This is great because it not only gives you the benefit of eating local ingredients, but it also helps the local economy, the community, and the environment (because there is not as much travel time from farm to restaurant).

Due to my love of nutrition and food, I have been to quite a few locally-based restaurants and cafes. I think the local aspect of an eatery adds something to the atmosphere. Usually, the restaurant or café will have a visual of where they are getting their ingredients from. I have seen some restaurants do this by listing where all the local goods came from and others do this by noting the places on a map. I love reading these because I find it interesting to know where my food is coming from. Because the ingredients I am eating are coming from the surrounding towns or states, I feel more connected with the place I live and the resources it can provide.  While the price of the dishes can be a little bit more expensive than your average restaurant, I believe it is worth it because of all the external benefits to the farmers, environment, and the local economy! Another benefit to eating at locally-based restaurants is that you find unique dishes that serve the local goods in creative ways! To me, the more local a restaurant is, the more the food reminds me of a home cooked meal. Who doesn’t love one of those!

Currently, there are many restaurants and cafés around us that have a local focus. Ones that I have been to personally include the Thistle Pig, Beach Pea Baking Co., Lil’s Café, Robert’s Maine Grill, and the Big Bean Café (for more locally focused restaurants and cafés, follow this link: https://seacoasteatlocal.org/find-local-food/restaurants-that-use-local-foods/).

In order to highlight how restaurants can incorporate the Seacoast Eat Local mentality into their work, I am going to use Young’s Restaurant as an example. I love this restaurant because it is right on UNH’s campus. This place also has special meaning to me because my dad and I eat there when he visits. Young’s sources approximately 40% of its food products from local vendors such as Stonyfield Farm, Stout Oak, and DeMerritt Hill Farm. In addition, they donate food scraps to Wild Miller Farms (Lee, NH) for their pigs. This is great because it reinforces the idea of a local food system. Young’s also has a large focus on environmental sustainability! For more information about the restaurant and their fantastic work with local foods and sustainability, visit: http://youngsrestaurant.com.

Even if a restaurant is not advertising the fact it is local, it could still incorporate local ingredients into its dishes, so don’t be afraid to ask! Additionally, don’t be afraid to strike up a conversation with your waiter/waitress about which local dishes he or she recommends best! That not only can result in you having a fantastic meal, but also connects you with your local community.

Happy hunting!

Chloe