January Highlights at the Farmers Market
Published on January 01, 2017
We love winter with the snow all around us! While the ground may be frozen and the fields, orchards and vineyards are dormant, winter is an important time for a farm. Farmers continue to be hard at work tending to their livestock, greenhouses, as well as planning for the upcoming growing season. Farmers love a classic, cold winter as it is helps to the environment to eliminate damaging insects and pathogens as well as helping perennial crops hold their energy in reserve for a strong growing season.
Visit us the weekend of January 21st and 22nd as we celebrate a Wild Winter Wonderland featuring wild blueberries!
Featured Ingredient: Frozen Wild Blueberries
Image credit Julie VanderKloet
Freezing our Harvest Fruits Bounty, featuring Reyes Farms
Winter is the best time to dig into your supply of fruits and veggies that were picked and frozen at the height of the harvest season, including wild blueberries! Despite being frozen they retain their flavor and nutrition. For a taste of the summer, visit Reyes Farm this winter to enjoy frozen fruits such as strawberries and cherries from the Niagara Region.
4 tips for freezing fruits and vegetables
- For ease of use, cut produce to the desired size according to their intended use (e.g sliced peaches, whole blueberries, diced carrots)
- Blanch vegetables in boiling water for a short period time and then cool immediately to deactivate ripening enzymes and brighten the colour.
- Dry your produce well before putting pieces onto a baking sheet in a single layer. This helps to keep fruits and veggies from sticking to each other during the freezing process.
- Once your fruit and veggies are frozen, transfer to freezer bags. To reduce freezer burn and to maintain the best taste and texture, make sure to squeeze all the air out of the bags before sealing and storing. A vacuum sealer will yield the best results and will help produce keep well for longer.
3 ideas for using frozen fruits
- Use frozen blueberries and other fruits in baked goods such as muffins and cobblers. To prevent the colour from berries bleeding into batter, make sure to add them before they are thawed.
- For a great start to the day or a pick me up snack, add frozen fruits to a smoothie. Not only does it help to keep the smoothie cold but it keeps it thick as well! Winter greens also lend themselves nicely to freezing and are a great addition to a smoothie.
- Mix frozen fruit, oatmeal, and yogurt in a Mason jar and store overnight for a quick and easy muesli breakfast in the morning.
Farmers Market Weekend Schedule
January 21 & 22
First Wild Winter Wonderland Celebrating Wild Blueberries
Join us to celebrate the first Wild Winter Wonderland at the Winter Village. Farmers Market and Street Food market, chefs, and food artisans will be cooking wild blueberries-inspired dishes. Make sure you try them all and vote for your favorite FROZEN dish!
See more here: What's On: Wild Winter Wonderland