What’s In Season is What You Find on the Local Calendar

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January 11, 2012 at 10:03 am

More markets are opening as we move further into January. We will now be giving “what to eat now” its own blog post. So stay tuned. Even though it is only the 2nd week of January, the local event calendar is already picking up, so check it all out!!

WHAT’S IN SEASON

This time of year, the idea of what’s in season is surely not what’s coming out of the ground, but what kind of local fruits and vegetables can I find.  Still, that said, you may find at markets or stores, items coming growing from indoor production.  There are lettuces being grown by Illinois’s Living Water’s Farm (who’s web site indicates that demand is such, that they’ve recently poured concrete towards a big expansion), and you may see rocket, Swiss chard and spinach from farmers with hoop-houses.  Don’t forget that you can always find mushrooms and sprouts.

After that, it all really depends.  Apples and potatoes are the most prevalent storage crops, and it does not even take a farmer’s market to find local apples.  You may come across root vegetables, cabbages and winter squash.  Don’t bring a shopping list; just get what you find.

And supplement with high quality preserved foods.  Resist the tyranny of the fresh!  Look for items like Tomato Mountain pureed tomatoes* or Seedling’s Fruit’s dried and frozen.  At the Logan Square Farmer’s Market you can get Michigan blueberries.

WHERE TO FIND LOCAL FOODS

These stores specialize in local foods:

City Provisions Deli 1818 West Wilson in Ravenswood, Chicago

Downtown Farmstand 66 East Randolph in the Loop, Chicago

Green Grocer 1402 West Grand Ave in West Town, Chicago

Dill Pickle Coop 3039 West Fullerton in Logan Square, Chicago

Marion Street Cheese Market 100 South Marion St. Oak Park

Butcher and Larder 1026 North Milwaukee in Noble Square, Chicago

Southport Grocery and Cafe 3552 N. Southport, Chicago

WHAT TO DO NOW

January 11

Chicago – Cedar Valley Sustainable Farm and Revolution Brewing 3 course Beer Tasting dinner Uncommon Ground Devon -6-8pm $20 Opportunity to meet the farmers behind this great meat and the brewers behind the beer. $10 of each ticket will go to the charity Uncommon Connection, a new non-profit in formation focused on creating an educational platform for all things green.

Evanston – Community Support Day Evanston Downtown Whole Foods Benefitting The Talking Farm - Your groceries can buy more than food, 5% of net sales for the day, at Whole Foods Market downtown Evanston (1640 Chicago Avenue) goes to The Talking Farm 8am – 10pm The Talking Farm is a nonprofit whose purpose is to provide local, fresh food, job training and educational opportunities for our community. They are partners in the ETHS Edible Acre Project in Evanston and in Skokie they are developing the Howard Street Farm, a two-acre educational, demonstration production farm.

January 13th

Chicago - A Night of Food Justice and Urban Farming – 6-9pm Today’s complex food challenges can be solved. Visit Chicago’s urban farm Growing Power to get inspired, network, share, and support ideas and best practices for implementing local solutions to a global food system. At Growing Power’s Iron Street Farm 3333 S. Iron St.

Chicago – Third Annual MLK Weekend Food Justice Symposium “From Plant to Plate – Grow Local as Social Action” kicks off with Doriane C. Miller, M.D. , Director , Center for Community Health and Vitality, University of Chicago Medical Center, will speak during the service on “Health and Food Observations from The South Side. Service will begin at 8 p.m and are held at KAM Isaiah Israel Congregation, 1100 East Hyde park Blvd.

January 14th

Chicago –  Third Annual MLK Weekend Food Justice Symposium “From Plant to Plate- Grow Local as Social Action” Held at KAM Isaiah Israel Congregation 1100 East Hyde Park Boulevard All workshops are free and they start at 11am. This is a weekend long education and advocacy program focused on food justice and sustainability.

New! Chicago – Growing Power’s School Garden Workshop – January 14 Register now for Growing Power’s School Garden ABCs workshop in Chicago! The workshop is designed for school garden educators or involved community members who want to learn more about designing, planning and sustaining school gardens. Cost to participate is $45 with lunch and CPDUs included. To register, click here.

Elgin - Elgin Winter Market – 166 Symphony Way (right across the street from Centre -Kimball/Douglas) – 8 AM – 2 PM

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 – 27 N. Bennett (Geneva Place) – 9 AM – 1 PM

La Fox – Heritage Prairie Farmers Market – 9-1pm 2N308 Brundage Road La Fox

Oak Park - Indoor Farmers Market in Oak Park – Sponsored by Faith in Place, the market will be held at the Unity Temple UU, 875 Lake St. from 9am – 1pm.

January 15th

Chicago – The Logan Square Farmers Market – 2135 N. Milwaukee at The Congress Theater 10am – 2pm

January 17

New! Chicago – Re-Thinking Soup – Jane Addams Hull House 12-1pm Topic of the week “Gastronomica – Feeding the Senses” Darra Goldstein, the journal’s founder and editor-and-chief, talks about how culture and scholarship have helped to shape our radical imaginations about how to form a more just and delicious world. Soup – Lentil Soup with Mushroom Bacon  800 S. Halsted

SAVE THE DATE!!

January 18

New! Chicago - Portlandia, The Tour comes to Chicago at The Hideout 8pm Sorry folks this event is sold out already, check The Hideout for ticket availability.

January 22

Chicago – Winter Farm Wine Dinner at West Town Tavern – This is a midwinter celebration of local food, featuring the produce of Green Acres Farmout of Judson, IN and the cheeses of Hidden Springs Creamery in Westby, WI. A representative from both farms will be there to talk about their farms and philosophy. 6pm sharp at West Town Tavern Noble Square, 1329 West Chicago Avenue $75 per person

January 25

New! Chicago - Bee Loved Feast Bucktown 1616 N. Damen  7-9pm Wine tasting and a special cocktail, the InCider, featuring Chicago Honey Coop Honey, $20. All proceeds to benefit the Chicago Honey Coop Apiary Relocation fund.

January 26

Chicago - Goodgreens.org meets downtown at the FNS(Food and Nutrition Service) offices 10-12pm. Contact Alan Shannon his email address is on the website if you are interested in attending. Goodgreens is a meeting of meetings focused on good, healthy food for all in Chicago. All are welcome to attend.

January 29

Chicago – Woo hoo! It is their 4th Anniversary celebration at The Green Grocer - 10am – 7pm – 1402 West Grand Ave.

February 2

Chicago - Slow Wine Guide - A walk-around wine tasting featuring over 100 wines from 45 Slow Wine Producers presented by Slow Food USA and Slow Food Chicago to celebrate the first ever publication in English of the Slow Wine Guide. Takes place at Spiaggia, 6-8:30pm 980 North Michigan Avenue $30 for Slow Food Chicago members $35 for general admission You can order tickets online here.

Chicago - Fresh Taste Open House - 5555 N. Sheridan Road Pool Terrace 4pm-7pm Join Fresh Taste as they celebrate local food, their new home and the hope that spring is around the corner!

February 26

Chicago – Slow Food Chicago Annual Meeting 2-4pm Location to be announced

March 15-17

Chicago Good Food Festival – More soon!

April 28

2nd Annual Artisan Producer Festival – More soon!


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