Do you remember it? And by it, I’m referring to the flower pot herb that is 150 x’s more potent then the stuff currently sold in the grocery stores. Can you smell it – that heady scent that fills your car on the way home from a July farmers market? The green slivers that adorn and complete your August tomato salads?
Basil is easily one of the many ingredients that I forgo in the winter, because it’s such a disappointment out of season. But luckily, some of our industrious local farmers have greenhouses, and right now basil and lettuce are thriving and have been available at the Geneva Community Winter Market.
And, you know, there are a lot of other yummy options in Geneva:
Breads, honey, herbs, lettuce mixes and lettuce pots from Erehwon Farm,
Local, humanely raised meat and eggs from Hasselmann Family Farm (note: Farmer Scott reports that he will be back this weekend with plenty of pork products, and that’s good news because the pork chops? Seriously good).
Artisan cupcakes from The Sugar Path (note: see that cupcake with the pretzel? That’s their Beer and Pretzels cupcake. From their Facebook page: Stout beer infused into chocolate cake and buttercream frosting, topped with a chocolate covered pretzel and pretzel crumbles.).
Breakfast offerings, soups and desserts are always on the offering from Inglenook Pantry:
I went with the clam chowder this weekend. Delicious.
And of course, there’s Pure Prairie farm and their lettuce and basil (along with honey, garlic cheese spread, and wheat berries):
Also, mushrooms will be available this weekend – just in time for that fancy Valentine’s Day dinner!
So what does a locavore do with basil in the wintertime? Well, lemons might not be local, but they are plentiful at the store. Combine lemon juice, local honey, local basil, water and some ice in a blender, and treat yourself to a little reminder of why we love summer so much. And take heart – those green basil leaves will be growing outside again soon!
The Geneva Community Winter Market runs on Saturdays through May from 9:00am to 1:00pm at The Geneva Place, 27 N Bennett Street in Geneva. Get up-t0-the-minute market information on their Facebook page.