If you’re like me and have a want-to-do list that’s an arm’s length long and haven’t gotten around to even ticking off the first four—then high-five to you—you’re not alone. I could blame it on the snowpocalypse. Ok I will. So this past Saturday, before another snow storm started and while the roads were mostly drivable, I took the opportunity to visit two winter farmer’s markets: Egleston in JP and Roslindale—markets I have vended at in the past and have good memories of.
The Egleston Farmer’s Market is in a new location this season at the Sam Adams Brewery Complex just across from where tours of the brewery take place and the Roslindale’s new Winter Farmer’s Market is held at the Sons of Italy on Birch St. (off Corinth St.) in Roslindale. Both markets are open Saturdays from 10-2.
The Egleston market is closing for the season after this Saturday (February 28th) and will reopen in the spring. Each of these markets had a great selection of vendors from fruit/veggies, cheese/eggs, tea/coffee, baked goods, spices, nuts, jams and what I didn’t see was too many duplicate vendors—nice job market managers!
Some of the goods I bought:
Q’s Nuts—who doesn’t love a nut?! I bought 3 for $10 small packs: Mexican Chocolate with a bit of cinnamon, Original Sweet, and Coquito with rum and coconut. The 3 were supposed to last all week. Obviously I have a problem because they were all gone by Sunday night.
The Popover Lady—I couldn’t resist a popover, a small personal-sized strawberry coconut pie, a blueberry and a cranberry scone.
Let me first say that I’m really picky about my baked goods. I find most stuff out there way too sweet. Naomi bakes small pies, popovers in cinnamon and sugar, Asiago cheese, and plain, and she had scones in blueberry, lemon, and cranberry on that day (that’s 3 different flavors). The scones are flaky yet not falling apart, her pies are not overly sweet, the crust is baked just right with the amount of fruit to crust ratio spot-on, and the popovers always consistently delicious. Popovers are $3, scones are $2, and small pies are $5 or $6.
Doves and Figs Jams—I have a jar of store-bought jam at home but Robin’s jams are unique and the flavors are so intense, I couldn’t help myself. I bought the Cranberry Fruit Mustard consisting of cranberries, mustard seed, and spice—I’m a big fan of sweet and spice. I added this to my plain ‘ol grilled cheese, and wow, this was absolutely delicious. I also got a small jar of the Winter Carnival: apple, pear, and cranberry conserve—excellent on just crackers and if I’d had any goat cheese (next time I hit up Foxboro cheese) I would’ve topped it with that. Jars are $5 each.
Samira’s Homemade—always a staple for delicious hummus, pita bread, mixed olives with herbs, and spinach filled pastry.
And last but not least, al Fresh Co is a company that takes CSA a step further. Laurel sources local ingredients creating recipes for you made from what’s in season. She packages up the pre-washed, cut, and measured ingredients in brown paper tied with twine, puts the recipe, nutritional information and instructions on a label, and all you have to do is light up the stove and in less than a half hour you have dinner made.
What makes these farmer’s markets worth the trip is that most of this stuff can’t be bought at a grocery store because these vendors are too small and haven’t gotten into or don’t want to do major wholesale. What makes the food so good is that it’s made by people who love what they do and put their all into it—you can tell by the quality of their products. If you’re around the area on Saturday take some time and check ‘em out!