Get Porky With Your Local Calendar

July 17, 2009 at 9:44 am

Rob Gardner

Are you too stuffed from the Green City Market BBQ to even think about eating local every again?  Probably more inspired than ever to eat local, right?  The problem, right, is that you are probably more inspired than ever to eat local tongue, blood sausage corn dogs, and other meaty products.  This local calendar, when you should be thinking about freshly dug potatoes, the earliest eggplants, baby zukes with their blossoms still attached, and candy sweet onions (not to mention the first peaches and that short season of local apricots), you are thinking where can I get me some Swan Creek pork.

You can’t.  I mean you can.  For instance, you can do no worse than a few John Manion sliders at Goose Island with George’s pork.  Still, there is no Swan Creek for sale retail.  There’s Crystal and her Indiana pastured pork.  You can find her at Sunday at the Beverly Market or Thursday at Hyde Park.  There’s a Wettstein selling pork at the Evanston market and another branch of the family selling hogs at the Oak Park market.  Oddly, one place you may have trouble finding local pig is Green City Market, at least if you shop there on Wednesday.  On Saturday, you can find Twin Oak Meats for your porcine pleasures.   Then, Sunday you can get your local pork at Logan Square from Cedar Valley or Jake’s Country Meats.  Stumped for local pork during the week, head to Cassie’s Green Grocer.  She usually has pork from Faith’s Farm.

More thoughts on local pork: Marion St. Cheese Market in Oak Park has a range of products from La Quercia.  Binny’s has Nueske smoked ham at a very good price.  Hasselmann Family Farms drops off their pork in Arlington Heights.  Anyone ever order?

You can always order your local pork from Irv and Shelly.  They have some from the aforementioned Twin Oaks and some from Stan Schutte’s Triple S Farm.

For a market, any market, with or without pork purveyors, use the Local Beet’s Market Locator.

Look for the first local honey of the year from Chicago Honey Coop.

I hope you’re inspired to check out the events at UnCommon Ground, especially the market tonight.

Enter your zucchini recipe in our ongoing search (who’s name I’m too ashamed to say anymore) after stopping by Beet Blogger Vera V’s booth this Sunday at the Logan Square Market for her collection of summer squashes.

Enter your jam in Hull House’s second Jam-off by this Monday.  The tasting and judging, open to the public, is Tuesday at Hull House.

Gapers Block informs me that a place I don’t always associate with local food, Gioco, is hosting a locavore dinner starting on Monday.

Paul Virant of Vie, who is about as associated with local food as anyone, will be doing a demo next Wednesday at Green City Market.

And right up there with local association, our pal Rob Levitt is saying let’s not just have fun with pork.  On Tuesday, he debuts his bistecca fiorentina dinner; a set piece of Tuscan classics centered around a big T bone steak.  Chef Levitt also reminds us that he will not allow his meat to be grilled past medium rare.  The special dinner for two runs through next Sunday and kind of takes the place of a July family dinner.

Finally, just before your next Local Calendar, go see the Beet Team at Eli’s Cheesecake.  The Local Beet, with Purple Asparagus, will have a table at the Eli’s Cheesecake Farmer’s Market for their family day on July 23.  Then, myself and the Sustainable Cook, Melissa Graham will speak at 1 pm.