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May 2011 Farmers Markets, Farm Stands, CSAs and other local food sources

BostonZest May 2, 2011 05:16 PM

It's the month of grand openings for farmers markets. SOWA opened over the weekend and next up should be Stillman's behind the Bank in Jamaica Plain. They are hoping their permits will arrive on time.

Here are the opening dates of the markets I go to most of the time.

SOWA, Harrision Ave. May 1st (Sundays)
Jamaica Plain (677 Center Street): May 14th (Tuesdays & Saturdays)
Copley Square: May 17th (Tuesdays and Fridays)
Cambridge Center (Kendall MBTA) Cambridge: May 18 (Wednesdays)
Prudential Center: May 19th (Thursdays)
Cambridge/Charles Square: May 22rd (Sundays)
Boston City Hall Plaza: May 23rd (Mondays and Wednesdays)
Central Square, Cambridge: May 23th (Mondays)
Davis Square, Somerville: May 25th (Wednesdays)
South Station/Dewey Square: May 26th (Tuesdays and Thursdays)

How about your favorite places and CSA updates.


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  1. y
    y2000k May 2, 2011 07:11 PM

    Newtonville Market is opening earlier this year: May 24th thru June 28 (Tuesdays) 12n-5p
    then switch over to Fridays from June 17-Oct 7

    It doesn't list the vendors. Last summer I went a few times but there were very few stands; hopefully it's better this year.

    Lexington Farmers Market opens May 31st (Tuesdays) 2p - 6:30p

    1 Reply
    1. re: y2000k
      BostonZest May 3, 2011 05:44 AM

      Thanks for the Lexington Market mention reminder. That market has a great reputation. I'll have to make a day trip of it and try it this year.

    2. BostonZest May 3, 2011 05:40 AM

      Good tip over here on a new source for fresh fish for those who can pick up in Marblehead.


      1. Gio May 3, 2011 05:51 AM

        Connors Farm in Danvers opened Sunday 1 May. We didn't get there but plan to go this coming Saturday. We didn't do a CSA this season and decided to simply buy at the farm as we've done in the past.

        1. y
          y2000k May 17, 2011 11:38 AM

          Any reports on the first Copley Sq market today?

          9 Replies
          1. re: y2000k
            Madrid May 17, 2011 12:49 PM

            Penny was probably there longer than I was and may give a more complete report. Hamilton Farms had the cider donuts...both regular and cinnamon sugar coated. Guy said they have them all year, as I remembered. Goat cheese guy was there as well as the Narragansset creamery cheese/yogurt people, Iggy's, Siena farms (radishes, baby greens of several kinds, baked goods). Others had lettuces, swiss chard, kale, lots of plants everywhere (herbs and veg). So nice to see the greens even in the cold rain!

            1. re: Madrid
              BostonZest May 17, 2011 06:47 PM

              Madrid, Did we see one another? I was doing a photo shoot for an upcoming piece on Serious Eats. Come up and say hello next time!

              You are right, I spent a good bit of time with the farmers and food vendors today. I'm so happy to have my "home" market back.

              I have a CSA with Atlas so I bought cucumbers, radishes, and lettuce. They have added some prepared foods, pickled and a tomato sauce to their mix. They had a good supply of greens, both salad and cooking greens.

              Hamilton had rhubarb and their baked goods. Cooks was there but without my huband's favorite oatmeal raisin cookies. Come on family cooks, bake oatmeal!

              Bought bread from Iggy, Italian sausage from Stillmans, Babaganoush, and a new lentil and bulgur salad with caramelized onions from Seta's Mediterranean. When we arrived home we sliced the cucumbers and radishes and piled on the babaganoush and salad. It was an outstanding combination.

              Next up was a round of Narragansett's Queso Fresco to fry up and enjoy tomorrow.

              The market has added a once a month knife sharpening service– On the Edge Knife Sharpening. She's at some other farmers' markets.

              And, there is a new market manager, Lily Chou.

              Tomorrow is Cambridge Center's opening day and Thursday Prudential opens.


              1. re: BostonZest
                southie_chick May 17, 2011 08:03 PM

                Hope Seta is coming to South Station / Dewey Squre this year. Do you know Penny if she's gonna be there - & what day she's gonna be there? I know she only did one day a week there last year but I can't remember which one.

                1. re: southie_chick
                  BostonZest May 18, 2011 06:09 AM

                  Here facebook page lists Dewey Square on Thursdays.


                  You can pop over there and confirm!

                  1. re: BostonZest
                    southie_chick May 23, 2011 07:43 PM

                    Thanks Penny! I just got an E-mail from the market saying that Seta will be there (Dewey Square) BOTH Tuesdays & Thursdays but isn't doing City Hall this year (don't know how accurrate that is). I'll have to drop by & see her on Thursday to see what's going on - & she's said she'd "introduce" us if I'm there at the same time as you since we've never met in person. I'll probably swing by about 11:30 - keep an eye out for me! : ) Ruth

                2. re: BostonZest
                  Madrid May 18, 2011 03:38 PM

                  I really just ran in and out and didn't see anyone with a camera but if I ever do, I'll say, Penny? I"m from NC and though I left there more than 30 years ago and have lost most of my accent, I still often pronounce "i" and "e" as one so it will sound more like "Pinny." I didn't see Seta....maybe I was trying to keep my head down out of the rain...her new salad sounds great, that's one of my favorite dishes. I live really close to Union Square in Somerville so that's really my home market, but I love Copley and try to make it every Tues. and Fri!

                  1. re: BostonZest
                    emannths May 18, 2011 04:12 PM

                    Any idea if the cukes were actually local? If so, I want to know their secret (greenhouse?), given the glares I've been getting from by garden recently about the weather...

                    1. re: emannths
                      BostonZest May 18, 2011 04:44 PM

                      Oh yes, they were from Atlas and they may be hoop house grown but at Copley they have to be local and they have to list if they are approved to have goods from a neighboring farm and then identify where it is from. Strict regulation on markets operated by Mass Farmers Markets.

                      I've been buying from Atlas for years and I know the farm family and many of the staff.
                      click over to their site and let the photos run. You'll see some of the hoop houses.



                      1. re: BostonZest
                        BostonZest May 20, 2011 03:33 PM

                        The Atlas Farmer Gideon Porth was a Copley today. He said the cucumbers were from a heated greenhouse.

                        I'm so happy that the farmers had a great market day today. We spent the afternoon at Coppa relaxing and then stopped by Copley on the way home. The stands were empty! It did my heart good to see that after the slow Tuesday business in the rain.

                        Nella Pasta is at Copley this season. http://www.nellapasta.com/

                        What a nice addition! I look forward to some great suppers from their selections.


                        253 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118

              2. MichaelB May 23, 2011 01:25 PM

                Central Square (Cambridge) began today - only a few stands so far, I'm sure more will arrive over the next few weeks. Hi-Rise Bakery was there, as was Austin Bros (meats), Hutchins farm (nice lettuces and some plants), Parker Farms (the most abundant - two kinds of radishes, lettuce, lots of different greens), some nice people selling fresh pasta and sauce.

                There were two new vendors as well - a stand that seemed very into blackcurrant recipes - a jam (not my thing but another person who tasted it loved it), a syrup, and some sort of beet spread. But the more notable - to me - new vendor was Kueh - selling Singaporean pastries and pickles. Very enthusiastic ladies offering lots of samples - pineapple and other pastries, one of those multicolored bouncy rice-flour sweets, etc. - but the hit for me was their Achar - which I gather just means pickled vegetables. But really EXCELLENT pickled vegetables: spicy, aromatic, crunchy, a bit sweet - just awesome. I bought a jar; the ingredients listed are: cucumber, pineapple, shallot, cabbage, long pepper, peanuts, sugar, sesame seed, galangal, lemongrass, chili, lime juice, turmeric, garlic, vinegar, oil. I don't usually get excited about prepared foods at markets, but these are seriously delicious.

                2 Replies
                1. re: MichaelB
                  yumyum May 23, 2011 01:26 PM

                  Nice find on the Singaporean pastries and achar! Thanks for reporting!

                  1. re: yumyum
                    StriperGuy May 23, 2011 01:40 PM

                    Yah, I am so there. And I LOVE black currants as well.

                2. y
                  y2000k May 24, 2011 01:20 PM

                  I was at the Newtonville Farmers Market today (opening day). This is the first year they're doing a Spring market.

                  Sorry I'm very bad with names, so I can't recall most of the vendors. There's only one who's selling vegetables: Old Friends Farm from Amherst. They have quite a selection inclu microgreens, mixed greens, arugula, spinach, radishes, and even kale flowers.

                  There are a couple of vendors selling seedlings, 2 bakeries (one of them have popovers), one cheese vendor which also sells veal, and Turkey Farm (?).

                  1. greygarious May 26, 2011 08:33 AM

                    The Chelmsford FM's blog mentions that MA regulations now allow MA wineries to sell at Farmers' Markets.

                    New this year, a Wilmington FM, which will be on Sunday afternoons starting 7/11: http://wilmingtonfarmersmarket.com/

                    1. PinchOfSalt May 26, 2011 08:45 AM

                      Belmont's Farmer's Market opens for the season on June 9. Its hours are 1:30-7 on Thursday afternoons. One change for this year is that the BFM will be participating in the SNAP program (formerly food stamps). (It is sad but true that the number of people enrolled in SNAP has approximately doubled in the past two years.)


                      Full disclosure: I am a volunteer at the BFM.

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