Concord’s Bustling Farmers’ Market

Although Farmers’ Market week and month are over I couldn’t pass up writing about Concord’s Farmers’ Market.  This market is open Saturday mornings from 8:30am to 12:00pm. It’s located downtown Concord on Capital Street. This market is the largest market I have been to so far. It claims to have, give or take, forty vendors. This market boasts the oldest farmers’ market in New Hampshire. It was started it 1981.

http://www.concordfarmersmarket.com/Concord_Farmers_Market/Home.html

This market fills Capital Street. Young musician filled the fresh morning air with their sweet melodies. A violinist and mandolin player strummed their instruments extremely well together. Buzzing with eager shoppers, the market busy from the time I arrived till the time I left. This market offered everything a Saturday morning shopper could need, including your morning cups of coffee and a fresh homemade apple cider donut!  Coffee was provided by Granite Ledge Coffee. Fresh brewed was offer for a $1.50 and it was delicious! As for the apple cider donut they were provided by Chichester Country Store. I decided to try the apple cider donut with the maple frosting on top! Yum!! This tasty breakfast, woke me up an really got me ready to enjoy the farmers’ market which had so much to offer.

http://graniteledgecoffee.com/

http://chichestercountrystore.com/

The market offers fresh flower, veggies (organic and conventional), good meat varieties, eggs, baked goods, dog treats, coffee, seasonings, soaps, cheeses really almost anything you can find on the out skirts of you grocery store. As I said it was a large market and the venders were very friendly. Many offered samples of their products and they were excellent.

Saturday I was on a mission though. My friend, Mel, and I were hosting a local dinner night and we were doing a football/ fall themed food. So we had decided to make nachos, chili, and serve and ice cream dish. So my mission was nachos. I needed some form of chips, and salsa. The cheese and ground meat I had purchase previously from Yankee Farmer’s Market in Warner, NH. Although come to find out I could have purchased these at the market too.

So the chips, I thought would be the hard part, turned out to be the easy part! At the market there was a company called Craquelin. They specialize in artisan flat bread.  These wonderfully tasty cracker/ chips came in a variety of flavors and textures. I decided on the jalapeno cheddar and spicy ten seed. After a sample of each, I couldn’t pass these up as my chips for the nachos.

http://www.crackerlicious.com/index.html

As I said I purchased ground meat from Yankees Farmer’s Market. I had chosen ground bison to offer my guests a change from grocery store ground beef. The bison was excellent but at the market I discover two other sources of meat that would have also worked well.  Cascade Brook Farm offers grass fed Angus Beef as well as their Berkshire Pork which offers a different taste and texture then regular pork. Also available for the adventurous, from Bonnie Brae Farms, is farm raised venison. The meat is tender and delicious.

http://www.cascadebrookfarm.com/

http://www.bonniebraefarms.com/

http://yankeefarmersmarket.stores.yahoo.net/

Of course what would nachos be without salsa?  The market offered a wonderful selection organic produce. I was able to get peppers, onions, tomatoes and garlic from two different venders. The one I really got to talk to was the farmer from Vegetable Ranch. He had large beautiful produce in rich colors, smelling fresh and tasty. The farmer was a charming man fill of information about organic farming and farmers’ markets.

http://vegetableranch.com/index.html

Lastly I needed cheese, which I had previously purchased from Yankee Farmer’s Market. It was country smoked pepper jack from Fox Smokehouse in Canterbury, although Concord’s Farmers’ Market also had cheese options. One option I thought would have been fun would have been goat cheese from Heart Song Farm. They offered a variety of flavors and all the ones I tried were very tasty and would have worked well. Check out the recipe below. It’s easy and ingredients are easily substituted.

Salsa:

1 extra large tomato

5-10 cherry tomatoes either red or golden

1 medium onion

1 medium green bell pepper

1-2 red or green jalapeno (Depending on how hot you like it. Red is hot green is mild to medium)

1-3 cloves of garlic

Garlic pepper salt to taste (I like Two Sisters Garlic out of Canterbury.)

Cilantro to taste

 

Nachos:

2 5 oz packages of broken up bags Craquelins

1-2 cups of ground or shredded meat cooked with your favorite taco seasoning

1-2 cups of salsa

1-2 cups of your favorite cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. On a cookie sheet lay out your Craquelins first, then layer the ground meat out on top of the craquelins, layer the salsa on top of the meat and finally layer the cheese on top of the salsa. Bake for 5-10 minutes, until the cheese melts. Then ENJOY!!

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