Exploring the Local Farmers’ Market – Bedford

In honor of New Hampshire Eat Local Month and NH Farmers’ Market Week, I’m dedicating this weeks’ blogs to New Hampshire’s Farmers’ Markets.  This way everyone gets a chance to see how great grocery shopping and eating local truly can be!

I’ve start my farmers’ market journey at Salem Farmers’ Market and continued on to Durham’s Farmers’ Market. Durham, which takes place every Monday June through October from 2:30- 5:30 p.m., is held in the parking lot by 15 Newmarket Rd.

Today I decided to explore Bedford’s Farmers’ Market. The market is held at Benedictine Park, which is located off of Wallace Road, signs letting consumers know what is available, line the road just after the turn off. Benedictine Park offers the potential for an array of activities, besides farmers’ marketing, such as hiking, skiing, picnicking, snowshoeing, bird watching or gardening but today I was there to enjoying the farmers’ market variety.

http://bedfordfarmersmarket.org/

The turn off from Wallace Road is a rough dirt road. The parking lot can be either dirt or grass. The first thing I noticed as I pulled into the parking area was the two police officers patrolling the parking lot. Next was the Mitt Romney booth which promoted his presidential campaign. These are touches I haven’t seen at any other farmers’ market. The market is otherwise peaceful and surrounded by lovely greenery.

Bedford had other offering that made it almost irresistible. The first booth I couldn’t pass up was Tomina’s. Tomina’s offered gluten free, vegan, organic cookie dough. The vendor, Tina Birdsall, provided patrons with a sample of her cookies. They were delicious. As someone who was gluten free for 5 year, to go to a farmers’ market and find someone who specializes in tasty gluten free treat, is great! Tomina’s offers an excellent alternative for vegans and Celiac’s at the farmers’ market.

www.tominascookiedough.com

Another exciting find at the farmers’ market was LaBelle’s Winery. I love my wine and if I can find a tasty local wine you know I’ll love it all the more. LaBelle’s is currently in the process of moving and will be located on route 101 in September.  When they open, they will be available for tastings Wednesday through Sunday. While I couldn’t try a wine at the market I did purchase the Granite State Apple. It is a semi sweet, slightly crisp bottle of wine quite enjoyable with a good sharp cheese.

www.labellewinerynh.com

While I was there I found a wonderful Maple Syrup vendor. He made the best maple cream I have ever had. It was rich like a frosting. It tasted heavenly. Sadly, I assumed when I purchased the cream the business’ name was on the label, it wasn’t. So all I can tell you is if you have a chance to get up to Bedford’s farmers’ market, find the maple syrup vendor and ask for a sample of the cream. Trust me it absolutely delicious! You won’t be able to leave without your own jar.

Laurel Hill is another fun vendor! They sell locally made jellies and jams. They are very tasty. They offer jams and jellies made from wines as well as fruit and veggie jellies. I purchased the “Zetz” Red Pepper Jam because I like a little heat and spice in my life. The two you women running the booth were charming and full of laughs!

www.laurelhilljams.com

Another vendor I really enjoyed was the Rolling in the Dough Bakery. The focaccia bread I was sold was wonderful and made an excellent bruschetta. The man running the booth was lively and passionate about his work. He was kind and attentive to his customers no matter their age. He sold a variety of baked goods from cookies to breads.

The vendors at Bedford were well versed in their crafts and loved talking about them. It was a very charming farmers’ market and I look for to tomorrows.

Exploring the Local Farmers’ Market – Durham

In honor of New Hampshire Eat Local Month and NH Farmers’ Market Week I’m dedicating a week of blogs to New Hampshire’s Farmers’ Markets.

I started my farmers’ market journey in Salem. Where I had the chance to enjoy a friendly crowd, good food and fun New Hampshire made products.  Today I headed out toward the seacoast to the lovely little town of Durham. University of New Hampshire (UNH) calls Durham home. Durham is a bright and cheerful town although sort of quiet when the college kids head home for break.

www.seacoastgrowers.org

A little about the Durham Farmers’ Market; it’s open Mondays, June – October from 2:15-5:30p.m. It’s located in the parking lot behind 15 New Market Road.

Durham is a small farmers’ market with a lot of charm. As you walk over towards the market the smells of fresh baked bread and fresh cut flowers catch your nose. The market is two rows of booths set up with a large isle in the middle for quick social meet ups from the regulars.

I found an a few diversions which were not available at the first farmers’ market. One that I really loved was Jessica Seaton Pottery; this young woman is very crafty with clay. Her bowls and pots, which were on display, were absolutely charming. She doesn’t have a website yet but she does have a facebook page where images of her art can be found and they are very beautiful. Definitely check this girl’s pottery out on Facebook!

Another pleasant surprise was an organic vendor, Stout Oak Farm out of Brentwood run by Kate Donald. She had an amazing selection of tomatoes and some not quite purple eggplants. I couldn’t resist her orange cherry tomatoes. These little beauties are sweeter then red cherry tomatoes and were snackable like berries! I ate half the bag on the ride home!

http://www.stoutoakfarm.com/

I couldn’t pass up the fresh baked banana bread. This was a real treat. Soft, moist and fresh; what more could you ask for in a cake style bread. The breads as well as some coffee cakes and cookies were being sold by Forty Five Market Street Bakery and Café out of Somersworth. I tried the bread, after a local feast of a dinner and it was excellent, one of the better banana breads I’ve had. Check them out on Facebook.

What’s a New Hampshire farmers’ market without maple syrup? Sadly I currently have 3 bottle of maple syrup in my house and don’t need any more for the time being but Sugar Mama’s Maple Farmer came ready for people like me. Not only were they selling Maple syrup but they also had maple candies and maple covered nuts.  So, of course, I couldn’t pass up the chance at some maple cover cashews! I enjoyed that little treat quickly and only have an empty bag to show for it.

http://www.sugarmommasmaple.com/

So that was my farmers’ market adventure for today! Check back tomorrow to see what else I’ll discover tomorrow.   

Exploring the Local Farmers’ Market – Salem

In honor of New Hampshire Eat Local Month I’m dedicating this weeks’ blogs to New Hampshire’s Farmers’ Markets. Also last week was NH Farmers’ Market Week, since I missed it; I’m going to dedicate my blogs to this also.

So I’ve start my farmers’ market journey at Salem Farmers’ Market, which is held every Sunday from June through October from noon to 4 p.m. at Lake Street Garden Center, located at 37 Lake Street, Salem, NH.

www.salemnhfarmersmarket.com

This was a charming little farmers’ market hosted by a beautiful Garden Shop. As soon as you pull up to the driveway the elegant landscaping of the grounds around stun! Exotic plants lavishly decorate a tranquil water features and fascinating flowers lined the opposite side. Some plants so large and unique almost look like they may have been borrowed from Dr. Suess’ The Lorax. The parking lot is set to the right, at the end of the driveway and the farmers’ market circles the end of the parking lot. One of the main highlights I encountered upon entering the farmers’ market was the friendliness of everyone. I was greet by a woman, who by all accounts is the neighborhood welcoming committee, thrusting an ecofriendly shopping bag upon me as I checked out the meat options at one booth.

Many of the vendors worked together to sell their products. At one booth’s they were selling hamburger from one farm, and dressing it with cheese and barbecue sauce from 2 other vendor. The honey used to make some of the barbecue sauce was provided by another vendor. A restaurant that specializes in Italian cuisine gave out a dish of pasta and sauce, so the bread company in the next booth gave a piece of bread to compliment it. They form a friendly community that works together to enhance all of their products.

The market offered naturally raised meats, from Hurd Farm of Hampton. The Hurd Family raises all grass feed beef. They have owned and run the farm since 1923. Today they were selling beef and pork. So I purchased some hamburgers to try later in the week.

www.hurdfarm.com

To go with my burger I purchased a bottle of King’s Spicy Barbecue Sauce. The woman running the booth offer me a tasting before I purchased the sauce and I must say I was pleasantly surprised how wonderful the sauce was. It had a rich smoky flavor, sweet with just enough burn in the back of your mouth. Can’t wait to dress up my burger with this sauce! The woman running the booth told me she used the honey from Karley’s Just Bee-Cause, who had the booth right beside her. Karley is a young lady with entrepreneurial spirit caring for her bees with the help of her dad. She produces raw honey and bees wax products. Pretty awesome young lady!

www.kingsbbqsauces.com

www.soothinghoney.com

The Slippery Soap Company makes all natural body products. They had a nice selection of soaps, salves and creams but what peaked my interest was the all-natural bug that I tried out at dust. I didn’t notice any mosquitoes bother me after. Gonna try it again tomorrow night and if I don’t get bit again this may become one of my favorite NH Made products. Next to of course Fulchino’s which I’ll write about in detail in another blog!

www.slipperysoapcompany.com

Entertainment was also provided at the Market. Poor Howard Stith played his 12-string guitar blues. The music was light and relaxing. It was perfect for taking it easy at the market or night out to unwind with friends. I had a chance to talk to “Poor Howard” and he was classy artist with a great smile and guitar finger to woo ones soul.

www.poorhowardstith.com

So this was a little touch of my first outing at a farmers’ market. I can’t wait till tomorrow to check out the next one! If you’re interested in checking out some NH Farmers’ Market’s yourself check out the link below.

www.nhfma.org/

If you’re from MA and interested in farmers’ markets and living local check out this blog. It’s an awesome blog by a friend!

http://livinlocalboston.blogspot.com/

Persied Meteor Shower

Persied Meteor Shower

The much need rain is falling but let’s hope for some clearing tonight and tomorrow night. New Hampshire beautiful skies will be streaked with Meteor tonight and tomorrow night as Persied Meteor shower peaks tonight and tomorrow night (August 11-12). So slip away from the city lights and find a dark place to watch the heavens and you will be blessed with a light show by the stars, if the skies clear!

Vacationing In Your Backyard – A Hike With a View

Trail Map

;

Last fall on Falling Waters Trail
Cloud over the mountain

It’s often hard to imagine an exotic vacation in your own backyard but what if you could see beautiful waterfalls, climb above the clouds and be submerged in an array of vibrant colors? Would you believe then?
As summer rapidly moves to a close and September is racing in with the autumn hot on its heels, I thought I should start my new blog with one of the most stunning hikes in the White Mountain the Franconia Ridge Loop Trail. This loop consists of the Falling Waters Trail, Franconia Ridge, the Greenleaf Trail and the Old Bridal Trail. It is not an easy hike, at 8.8 miles with a 4000 foot elevation gain and two Mounts over 5000 feet each, many guidebooks rate it as strenuous hike but if you are up for the challenge you will be rewarded with breathtaking scenes.
Access to the trailheads is very convenient and parking can be found right off of I-93. When heading north watch for a Trailhead Parking sign about a mile and a half after the Basin.
This hike is best in September when the foliage can be seen in mid to northern New Hampshire. I enjoyed starting the hike on Falling Waters Trail so when I get to the ledge opposite of the Franconia Ridge, I can sit back and enjoy the view of what I have already hiked. But either of the trails, Falling Waters or Old Bridal, offer amazing views which will be enjoyed no matter which trail you start on.
Falling Waters Trail, which weaves in and out of Dry Brook, is the home of, not one but three beautiful waterfalls. The first and smallest of the three waterfalls is Stairs Falls. Stairs Falls is a beautiful cascading fall that’s under 20 feet high. Don’t be fool by its size, though it’s one of the prettiest falls. Swiftwater Falls is the second fall. It’s a bit larger and a beautiful site to see. This fall cuts through the path. The final fall is the Cloudland Fall. Cloudland is the largest, running about 80 feet high, of the three falls. Cold sprays of water cool hikers when the waters are high. The view of this fall is stunning.
As amazing as the falls are, your adventure doesn’t end here. As you reach the end of Falling Waters Trail, you will find yourself reaching the summit of Little Haystack Mountain. Little Haystack stands just over 4000 feet. It is not considered one of New Hampshire 4000 footer though. It lacks this recognition because Mount Lincoln’s col stands just 200ft below it. The views when you reach the top of Little Haystack, with Mount Lincoln to the north and Mount Liberty to the southwest, are stunning. Your breath will be taken away as you look out over New Hampshire as far as the eye can see. The hike only gets more impressive as you reach the peaks of Mount Lincoln and Mount Lafayette. At Mount Lafayette if you are really lucky you may find yourself above the clouds and starring out into light fluffy pillows rolling over the lower hills and trees. Always beware of the weather when hiking on the Ridge. The weather can change fast and suddenly so be sure the weather is in your favor for hiking. On top of Mount Lafayette, the highest of the three peaks, is the best place to enjoy the surrounding and lunch! I suggest a nice rest here.
After lunch, the decent begins but the beauty isn’t over. Greenleaf Trail to Greenleaf Hut is the next destination. Greenleaf hut can be stayed in but must be booked well in advance. Old Bridal Trail will be the last trail you will take. This trail will take you back to the parking lot. Old Bridal trail offers a look back at the Franconia Ridge and a stunning panorama picture of the foliage. I suggest you grab a quick rest here and enjoy the spectacle before you continue on. The foliage shines rich with gold, reds and sunshine oranges.
Remember when hiking safety first! Please check out the link below for safety tips and items to take with you on your hike!
http://www.wildlife.state.nh.us/Outdoor_Recreation/hiking_safety.htm

It’s Time To Go New Hampshire!

Welcome to Going Local NH. A New Hampshire adventure awaits us! This blog will be a tour of New Hampshire’s local made, markets, boutiques and culture. Stories, suggestions, and fun wait in this blog. Wine, brews, food, shopping, vacation adventures and more will be what I am sharing with everyone in hopes that people who live here will enjoy what is right in their backyard while people who don’t, will come up and relish in the excitement that can be found in New Hampshire!