Serving Up Vermont
“Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting, and autumn a mosaic of them all.” – Stanley Horowitz
Fall is a vibrant time for Vermont. Richly colored apples and squash obscure my countertops; beets and Swiss chard find their way into breakfast, lunch, and dinner; and most notably, the aromas of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and all of my favorite warming blends fill my senses. Surrounded by falling leaves, and starting to feel the chill in the breeze, I can’t help but feel inspired by it all. Mulled cider and wine make regular evening appearances and chili often cooks in a crockpot throughout the day, filling my home with these wonderful smells.
Whether your child is in 1st grade or you yourself are taking classes, eating well is an important part of performing well in school and feeling great during the long days away from home. Although there are no school-goers in my house right now, I was there myself just a few months ago and learned a few tricks to easily keep my bag full of healthy food that I would actually want to eat! Below are some simple, healthful recipes for lunches and snacks to keep students fueled, energized, and focused during their days in the classroom.
Going back to school can be hard. Alarm clocks shrewdly remind us that lazy mornings are a thing of warmer months, and it’s time to trade in beach towels for backpacks. If you’re like me, you dream about being organized and prepared the night before so that mornings are a little less rushed, and I’m more inclined to actually sit down for my breakfast.
What if I told you there was a product we stocked that is in even higher demand than Heady Topper? Would you believe me? If you’ve ever looked for Gerard’s bread at the Co-op, then you know it’s true! We’ve even seen folks notice it arriving at our loading dock out in the parking lot, and head back inside to meet the deliverer right as they arrive in the Bakery Department.
As many of you know, Summervale season is upon us. Every Thursday in our office is a bustle of activity to make sure orders arrive on time, all the prep work of washing, grinding, chopping, and slicing is done, the signs are printed, and the van gets packed with everything we need to head on down to the buzzing scene at the Intervale. Last week, as I prepped for our “Make Your Own Pesto” activity, I had to make a last-minute change of plans to whole basil tops instead of already-picked leaves. Basil tops include the whole stem and come in large whole bunches.
Radishes. Always one of the first spring goodies to pop up in my garden, it’s always exciting to pull those red (or white or purple) globes out of the ground. But if you are like me, you probably grow tired of eating radishes the same way all summer long – sliced raw on salads.
As spring moved into summer, our radishes, as radishes tend to do, became spicier and spicier. Too spicy for salads, in my opinion. I needed to find something else to do with them. I had heard of roasting radishes, and in my searching, I also found recipes for braising radishes. Both methods are easy to prepare and mellow out radishes’ spice, making them creamy, mild little nuggets.
Last week, City Market hosted a class where the cooking lesson featured raw vegan tacos. I was as intrigued as I was excited for this class—as were many of our participants! The instructor, Krissy Ruddy, is a holistic health coach, and is well versed in variations of the raw food and vegetarian and vegan lifestyles.
If you take a walk through our bread aisle, you may see some impressively dark loaves marked as a product of Bee Sting Bakery. As owner and lead baker, Heike Meyer would say “Don’t fear the dark crust!” This week, Heike led a tour of her bakery and a class on the wonders of sourdough baking. She and her husband, Jens, who she affectionately introduces as Chief Oven Manager, together run this picturesque and self-sustaining bakery out of their home in Fairfax, VT.
A couple of us from the Co-op had the opportunity to visit Ploughgate Creamery at Bragg Hill Farm in Fayston, VT the other week.
As I write this, my final blog post, I am headed into my last week as City Market’s Outreach and Education Coordinator. After 9 years of coordinating and attending classes, I feel as though school is being let out for summer…or forever. It really is a bittersweet feeling. I am happy to be moving into a part time position at the Co-op, which will allow me to spend more time with my son. And staying at the Co-op allows me to continue to connect with all the awesome folks that I have met along the way. However, I have always enjoyed being a student!
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