Moving Into Winter The Local Calendar

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December 8, 2011 at 9:09 am

Well, we are not quite there yet but we are a couple weeks away from the Winter Solstice, December 22nd and the official start of winter, until then lets still enjoy what’s left of the bounties of the Fall harvest. Saturday and Sunday are predicted to be sunny for all those hustling to the farmers markets across Chicagoland. What we mean is that we want you to continue to search for and consume “fall” in your locavore efforts.  Of course, you should also be making haste in your efforts to put-away for those actual snowy days, but in the next few weeks, think fall: broccoli, brussels spruts, kale and other greens, maybe a stray green pepper.  You’ll have plenty of time to live on rutabagas and other roots from the cellar.

To assist you in your winter farmer’s marketing, we have this guide, and we also have a stocking up list for your to use. We’ve listed, below, the markets for this week, but you can also look at our master list of Chicago area winter markets.

WHAT TO BUY NOW

Since the Local Calendar still says Fall, it also says there’s more produce out there than you might expect Fruit-wise, there may be some pears, certainly Asian style “papples”, and grapes as well as various apples. Vegetable-wise, look for cold friendly fall crops like greenscabbagebroccoli, cauliflowerrocketlettucesspinachradishes, probably a pepper or two, and then continue to stock up on all the storage stuff: potatoesgarliconionssquash and the roots like turnipsbeetsrutabagas, etc.  Other items you may still find include leeks, sunchokes, and hearty herbs like cilantro, sage, and thyme.

WHERE TO FIND LOCAL FOODS

Find a farmer’s market near you with our market locator.

These stores specialize in local foods:

City Provisions Deli in Ravenswood, Chicago

Downtown Farmstand in the Loop, Chicago

Green Grocer in West Town, Chicago

Dill Pickle Coop in Logan Square, Chicago

Marion Street Cheese Market in Oak Park

Butcher and Larder in Noble Square, Chicago

As Hammond notes in his root cellar diary, it is possible to buy good quality local food at your neighborhood grocery store.  We see tons of Michigan apples at Caputo’s, and not just plain ones, but interesting varieties like fuji.  Whole Foods has an assortment of stuff, primarily from Wisconsin’s Harmony Valley Farm.  We’ve also spotted Michigan concord grapes at Whole Foods.

WHAT TO DO NOW

December 9

Chicago – Friday 7:30pm Showing of the movie The Greenhorns, a documentary film about the challenges of young farmers across America, at The Plant, 1400 W. 46th Street, Chicago. The Plant is a vertical farm, food business incubator, research and education space in what was the Buehler Brothers packing plant near the old Union Stockyards.

December 10

Chicago - Green City Market – You will now find the market in its cold weather home, the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum.  Expect a wide range of cold weather produce –  8 AM – 1 PM This Saturday is Free Tote Bag Day, get them while they last!

Chicago - 61st St/Experimental Station – 6100 S. Blackstone – 9AM – 2 PM

Chicago – Screening Farmageddon Gene Siskel Film Center 3pm Green City Market members pay $7 The movie is a documentary about the unseen war on American family farms.

Elgin - Elgin Winter Market – 166 Symphony Way (right across the street from Centre -Kimball/Douglas) – 8 AM – 2 PM Here is a list of the vendors that will be there this Saturday.

Evanston – The NEWLY MINTED Evanston Indoor Farmer’s Market, at the Evanston Ecology Center, 2024 McCormick Blvd at Bridge St., (there is a large parking lot across the street), thrown by the Friends of the Evanston Market – Expect many of the vendors found at the summer Evanston markets, see here for a list of vendors and other information on the market – 2024 McCormick – 9 AM – 1 PM

Geneva – Geneva Green Market – Note, the market has moved to a new location, 27 N. Bennett (Geneva Place) – 9 AM – 1 PM

Grayslake – This market in the far north suburb starts early and ends late.  Dress warm as it’s outdoors – Whitney and Center Streets 10 AM – 2 PM

Woodstock – This large suburban market moves indoor this weekend to the McHenry County Farm Bureau building at 1102 McConnell Rd. in Woodstock, just off Route 47 – 8 AM – 1 PM

December 11

Chicago – The Glenwood Sunday Market – The Glenwood Bar, 6962 N Glenwood, Farmers, Food Artisans, Crafters and More!

Chicago - Logan Square Farmer’s Market – This market moves indoor to the Congress Theater, 2135 N. Milwaukee. Randy Brockway says his Brockway Farms will still have many local vegetables including baby spinach and cauliflower – 10 AM – 2 PM

Chicago – Andersonville Winter Market – The Andersonville winter market is the third Sunday of each month. This month is hosted by The First Evangelical Free Church, 5255 North Ashland, sponsored by Faith in Place. - 1130 AM – 330 PM

Chicago – Countrybelly Pop-Up -10am -2pm Chef Bill Kim will host his second Countrybelly pop-up. Taking place at Belly Shack (1912 N. Western), Countrybelly will focus on classic Southern dishes done with an Asian spin. The main courses, which include fried chicken with corn bread and chorizo gravy; tofu skillet with bok choy, Chinese black beans and potatoes; and challah French toast with bananas, coconut cream and Vietnamese cinnamon caramel, range in price between $9 and $12. Various sides will also be available, but reservations won’t. The first-come, first-served brunch is also BYO.

Chicago – Farmageddon – 5:15pm Gene Siskel Film Center

December 12

Chicago – Farmageddon – 7:30pm Gene Siskel Film Center

Chicago - Food Truck Meetup – 5-8pm Location TBD(check link) Sponsored by the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce this is a forum to bring together, food truck owners, operators, restaurants, individuals who want to start a food truck, AND fans of food trucks can meet, socialize, and learn about the obstacles and opportunities in this new industry. Many if not all of the food trucks source local as much as possible so this is an opportunity to support this growing niche in street food.

December 14

Chicago – Open House – 4-6:30 Faith in Place 70 East Lake St. Suite 920 Join us for an Open House at our office in the loop!  You’ll have a chance to chat with the staff and meet other friends of Faith in Place as we celebrate the end of another great year. We love to end the year with a little good food, a splash of something warm and celebratory and the company of our good friends. No program, no agenda, we won’t even ask you to donate! Just come and share a little community spirit with us as the year winds down.

December 15

Chicago – Farmageddon – 6:15 pm Gene Siskel Theater

SAVE THE DATE!

Friday December 16 3-8pm Saturday December 17 11-6pm Ms. Mint Local & Fair Trade Gift Bazaar 3-8pm Grossinger Autoplex(near North Avenue and Clybourn) Curated grassroots gift bazaar that brings together regional food artisans, fair trade businesses, designers, authors, community organizations and more!

March 15-17

Chicago Good Food Festival – More soon!

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