Do You Need “Fresh” Food with This Local Calendar?

January 21, 2011 at 12:00 pm

We fear that at the few available winter farmer’s markets this weekend, you will not be able to find what is commonly referred to as “fresh” food. That is food that is from the plant in its natural state. Fruit and vegetables that have not been placed in a jar or a freezer or left to dry. Fresh. To eat local sometimes means one must forsake fresh. As we said last Local Calendar, do not get caught up on the idea of fresh produce. Resist the Tyranny of the Fresh. Listen, you aint gonna find much fresh on the Local Calendar, so you might as well embrace your canned tomatoes.

I mean at the markets this weekend, Logan Square and the two winter markets associated with Faith in Place, you will find high quality, packed at their peak of ripeness, tomatoes from Tomato Mountain.* Irv and Shelly remind us that if it’s too cold to hit a market, you can find freshly frozen food from them, specifically Midwestern corn. We hate to say it, but sometimes it’s difficult to eat local. Look at your options below. Don’t discount your local food specialists like Cassie’s Green Grocer or the Downtown Farmstand. Get what you can this week and remind yourself you should have been listening to us when we told you about putting up your own food.


We remain in the part of the year where it is not a question of what’s “in season”, it’s a question of “what’s available.” The following items may be found, depending:

Indoor grown vegetables: lettuces, spinach, micro-greens, mushrooms, cucumbers, herbs, rocket; root vegetables: beets, carrots, celery root, sunchokes; storage crops like onions, potatoes, and apples,winter squash and cabbage.


These stores specialize in local foods:

It’s open! Eat locally butchered meat at the Butcher and the Larder.

C&D Pastured Pork’s sales around town.

We bet, if you look around, you can also find local foods at various grocery stores, especially local apples, onions, winter squash and potatoes.


Saturday – January 22

Beekeeping class at Hull House offered by Chicago Honey Co-op – 800 S. Halsted, Chicago – 10 AM – 3 PM

Evanston – Winter market associated with Faith in Place at Lake Street Church – 607 Lake, Evanston – 9 AM – 1 PM

Geneva – Geneva Community Market – Inglenook Pantry – 11 N. 5th Street, Geneva – 9 AM – 1 PM

Sunday – January 23

Chicago – Winter market associated with Faith in Place at Irving Park Luthern Church – 3938 W. Belle Plaine, Chicago – 12 PM – 3 PM

Chicago – Logan Square Farmers Market – 2135 N. Milwaukee – 10 – 2 PM – All sorts of things on for Sunday including Otter Creek cheddars, Mint Creek lamb, and Tempel Farms eggs; Otter Creek Organic Farm also has grass fed beef and pasture raised organic pork and chicken – Congress Theater, 2135 N. Milwaukee – 10 AM – 2 PM

Chicago – Happy 3rd Anniversary Green Grocer Chicago – A day of tastings and celebrations to mark three years in business for Cassie and Gary and the little store that can, Green Grocer Chicago – 10 AM – 7 PM – 1402 W. Grand, Chicago 

Chicago – Slow Food Chicago Book Group – Discuss Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser – First Slice Cafe, 4401 N. Ravenswood, Chicago – 2 – 3 PM – RSVP to

Wednesday – January 26

Soup and Bread at the Hideout benefiting local food pantries – 1354 W. Wabansia, Chicago – 530 PM – 730 PM


Sunday – January 30

Chicago – Slow Food Chicago Annual Meeting Featuring James Beard award-winning author Deborah Krasner. Deborah will host a Q&A session on sustainable meat.  Submit questions for Ms. Krasner and register for the event here. – 230 PM – 430 PM – Kendall College, 900 N. North Branch Street, Chicago.


March 17 – 19 – Expo including Financing Farm to Fork, Chicago Food Policy Summit, Localicious Party and Consumer Day.

*In the past, my wife has been employed by Tomato Mountain, and she may work for them in the future.