Local Food Still in Season and Where to Find It – Sponsored by Vera
Local Food Everywhere
This remains the season when local food is in season. Yes, we want you to visit a farmer’s market–we’ve provided some good ones below. Yes, patronage the growing number of stores in the Chicago area that specialize in local food. We also want you to get local food where you can find it. See, yes it can be accessible and affordable to get your local food at the grocery store, but by doing so, you are also improving the whole local food system. You encourage all stores to stock local foods, and you make it possible for more farmer’s to prosper.
Our intel this week tells us that Whole Foods had, amongst other things, locally grown watermelons and apples. Meijers had locally grown tomatoes and corn. You can also see the local produce Angelo Caputo has right now here, and this ad for A&G International Fresh Market shows they have Michigan peaches. What else can you spot?
We told you that Chef Mendez at our sponsor,Vera, knows that you can do no worse than rubbing in-season tomatoes across country bread, a/k/a tomato bread a/k/a pa amb tomàquet. He still has the roasted vegetable dish escalivada on the menu, and we encourage you to try this dish at peak season too.
The full depth of the local food scene is always on display in Jeannie’s Local Calendar.
What’s In Season Now
The tables remain stacked with tomatoes in all shapes, sizes and colors. And finally, the peppers are coming in, in colors other than green. Eggplants can be green, white or orange; round, long, or squat. Apples are yellow, pears are red, and plums deep purple. Don’t settle for anything the way you thought it should be this time of year.
From the Ground
- Sweet peppers – try the longer “carmen” peppers for variety
- Poblano peppers – as Michel Morowitz once said, whatever a green [bell] pepper can do, a poblano pepper can do it better
- Various “frying” peppers – melrose, shishito, padron
- Hot peppers – jalapenos, serranos, cayenne, etc.
- Sweet corn
- Summer squashes
- Shelling beans
- Green beans
- Fresh “peas” a/k/a black eye peas, crowder peas, etc.
From the Trees and Bushes
- Peaches – nearing the end of the season!
- Melons – and nearly all those orange ones around here are muskmelons, not canteloupe!
- Asian pears
- Summer strawberries
- Meats, poultry, lake fish
- Milk, cheese and other dairy
- Grains and breads
- Preserved and jarred products
Where to Find Local Food
Almost all markets are running now. We’ve highlighted some of our favorites. If you want to roam, go back to this post for some interesting markets within a short drive. What about the Sugar Beet Coop? They got lots of local food as do these other stores.
There’s a good chance the Condiment Queen will have the justly famous Tomato Mountain sun golds this Sunday at Independence Park – 9 AM – 1 PM – Springfield and Irving Park
It may not be the biggest market in the Chicago area, but it is the only market with a free breakfast of Eli’s Cheesecake Cafe (and the only market where you can gorge on cheesecake samples). We maintain a special place in our heart for this market, Thursdays – 7 AM – 1 PM - 6701 West Forest Preserve Drive
Good salumi at a farmer’s market is just one of the reasons we love the Logan Square Farmer’s Market. Sundays 10 AM – 3 PM (yes!) – Logan Boulevard, just east of Milwaukee
What did you forget? Well, there’s a Monday market by Loyola in the afternoon – 3 PM – 7 PM - This market accepts the LINK card. - 1200 W. Loyola Ave
Looking for the Condiment Queen and her sun golds and you cannot make it to Oak Park because you live in the Big City. Well, Tomato Mountain and some of the other Oak Park Farmer’s Market faves like Geneva Lakes produce and Hardin Farms Michigan fruit are at the Andersonville Farmer’s Market on Wednesdays from 3 PM to 8 PM. This market accepts the LINK card – 1500 Berwyn
Green City Market is overflowing right now. Saturday from 7 AM to 1 PM – Lincoln Park between Clark and Stockton Drive (approximately 1817 N. Clark)
Have we mentioned donuts. Family ties? Well, what about one of the few area markets with locally tapped maple syrup? Jim the Vinegar Guy? Sadly, no Hazzard Free grains this year. Saturdays from 8 AM to 1 PM - 460 Lake
There are often times, when we think about these things, quantify these things, we say this is the best there is in the Chicago area. There’s the heirlooms, the regular, meats, cheeses, breads, the unique and the mundane, about all you could want in one market. Saturdays from 730 AM to 1 PM - University Street & Oak Avenue
Very close Beet ties to this one, so get there on Saturday and shop, shop, shop. Saturdays 8 AM to Noon - 6210 Dempster
Do you think we’re not gonna include something way far away? The Geneva Green Market has been focusing on organic and sustainable farmers for a while and is worth the visit if you are anywhere close (or not as it’s a great drive or a great train ride). Thursdays 9 AM to 1 PM - 327 Hamilton Street
Did you want to get a head start on the weekend by hitting a Friday market? How about this one which runs from 930 AM to 1130 AM - 190 S. Roselle Road
Why not a farmer’s market by a farm? Glenview lets you do that on Saturdays from 9 AM – 12 PM - This market accepts the LINK card. - 1510 Wagner Road
What’s In Season and Where to Find It – Sponsored by Vera 1023 W. Lake, Chicago