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Farmers Market Archive

Mill City Farmers Market Blog

The Unofficial Blog of the Mill City Farmers Market.  Mill City Times is proud to be a Sponsor and Community Partner of The Market.  Read more here...

Celebrating their 12th Season!

Mill City Farmers Market 2017 Dates:

Every Saturday / May 6 - October 28

Mill City Farmers Market 2017 Hours:

8:00 AM to 1:00 PM (October Hours 9a-1p)

Mill City Farmers Market Location:

704 S. Second St. Minneapolis, MN

Monday
Sep112017

Mill City Cooks: Chicken & Wild Rice Corn Chowder

For the September 9 Mill City Cooks demo, Chef Jenny Breen cooked up a batch of Chicken & Wild Rice Corn Chowder.

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

The recipe calls for chicken broth, but Jenny substituted a vegetable broth made by simmering all the vegetable stalks, peelings, etc.

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

There are two proteins in this chowder - chicken, along with bacon for garnish. Jenny used the bacon fat to brown the chicken and sauté the vegetables.   

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Along with simmering the broth and cooking the bacon and chicken, additional prep was cooking the wild rice, chopping all the vegetables and mincing garlic. 

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

 September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Once the vegetables are cooked, the rice and chicken are added, and finally the whole milk with cream (which was a substitute for the half and half that the recipe calls for).  

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Recipes prepared at Mill City Cooks demos can be found online.

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Thank you to Lakewinds Food Co-op for sponsoring the 2017 Mill City Cooks series, and providing fun activities for the little ones!

May 6, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

May 13, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market 

Saturday
Sep092017

Shopping Basket from the September 9 Mill City Farmers Market

New in the basket this week: Honeycrisp apples from Ames Farm, Circle of the Sun cheese from Cosmic Wheel Creamery, butternut and spaghetti squash from Dusk2Dawn Farm.

September 9, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Wednesday
Sep062017

It's Apple Season!

Look for local apples at the Mill City Farmers Market from vendors such as Ames Farm, Horner's Corner, WEI and Prairie Hollow Farm. Because NO ONE should have to be subjected to a Red Delicious! ;)

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Below is an article submitted to us by Fast Horse, a local creative agency, regarding the Honeycrisp:

This year’s fast-approaching apple season marks the 20th anniversary of the Honeycrisp — which revolutionized a bland and slumping apple industry, and paved the way for bolder varieties that are piled high in produce aisles today.

Now, the same family-owned orchard in rural Minnesota that made a bold bet on bringing the Honeycrisp to market finds itself on the forefront of industry innovation, once again.

Twenty years ago, annual apple sales in the U.S. were in a slump. Growers were bent on breeding consistent red colors, rather than focusing on flavor, and mainstream varieties were bland and mushy. In fact, Pepin Heights Orchard, like many family farms around the country, found itself on the brink of bankruptcy. But the little-known Midwestern farm made a big bet on Honeycrisp, which offered bolder flavor and innovative texture.

Flash forward, and U.S. apple sales have been on a steady climb. What's more: The price that U.S. growers receive for apples has more than doubled between 1990 and 2015. That's because, on the heels of Honeycrisp's success, more orchards are producing higher-quality products that consumers are willing to pay more for.

The industry transformation was made possible by Pepin Heights owner Dennis Courtier, who worked with David Bedford of the University of Minnesota’s apple breeding program and brought Honeycrisp to the market.

Sunday
Sep032017

Mill City Cooks: Greek Pico de Gallo Chicken Salad

For the September 2 Mill City Cooks demo, Chef Jenny Breen prepared a super tasty Greek Pico de Gallo Chicken Salad, featuring chicken breasts from Braucher's Sunshine Harvest Farm, feta cheese from Cosmic Wheel Creamery and produce from several of the vegetable farmers.

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Jenny marinated the chicken in a sauce consisting of Greek yogurt, minced garlic, lemon juice, honey and fresh herbs. From there, the chicken was fried in a few tablespoons of olive oil, with additional marinade added while it cooked thru. 

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

The final step in prepping the chicken was to shred it into bite-sized pieces.

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Once the chicken was removed from the pan, fresh sweet corn was seared to bring out extra flavor.

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

With the chicken and corn ready, the remaining salad ingredients were chopped and everything was combined, along with a Greek yogurt dressing (yogurt, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, honey and salt) and crumbled feta.

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Recipes prepared at Mill City Cooks demos can be found online.

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Thank you to Lakewinds Food Co-op for sponsoring the 2017 Mill City Cooks series, and providing fun activities for the little ones!

May 6, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

May 13, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market 

Saturday
Sep022017

Shopping Basket from the September 2 Mill City Farmers Market

New in the basket this week: Brussels sprouts, Zestar!® apples (insanely sweet!) from Ames Farm, purple sweet corn from Prairie Hollow Farm and Delicata squash from Dusk2Dawn Farm.

September 2, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market
Wednesday
Aug302017

Mill City Farmers Market Organic Field Grant Program: How the market community extends beyond Saturday shopping

Article by Jenny Heck, Marketing & Events Manager, Mill City Farmers Market:

If you’ve ever walked through the Mill City Farmers Market on a Saturday morning, you may notice there is something that distinguishes it from other shopping experiences. Not only do over 120 local farmers and artisans transform the historic train shed overlooking the Mighty Mississippi into a bustling marketplace, but they also create a community. Farmers educate shoppers about this year’s sweet corn harvest (it will be going late into September) and the Alaskan fishing season (Sockeye goals were met!). Local artisans explain their crafts through weaving demonstrations, small-batch sauerkraut samples, bees buzzing in a tableside beehive and even a sourdough starter on display, bubbling away in the morning heat. You will also see neighbors gather to support healthy foods and local farmers.

“From my perspective, [what distinguishes Mill City Farmers Market is] a combination of Brenda's vision for the market, and a customer base that cares about the farmers and vendors,” says long-time Mill City Farmers Market vendor Jeff Nistler of Nistler Farms, who sells organically grown sweet corn, melon, tomatoes and winter greenery from his farm in Maple Plain, MN. “It translates into a desire for education and a desire for the farmers to diversify and experiment. It's not just words; they put their money down to help fund education programs and grants that enable farmers to expand and improve practices. There is no other market that does this.”

The Mill City Farmers Market Grant Program that Nistler mentions started in 2013 as a way for our community to support their farmers in times of crop loss, structural damage and other forms of hardship. It has since grown into a program that not only offers hardship support, but also funds small farmers and food makers working to improve sustainability in their businesses. Nistler, for example, is currently working on a tomato grafting project funded by the Organic Field Grant, in which he aims to reduce viruses in his plants by joining delicious tasting tomatoes onto virus-resistant ones to get the best of both.

Since 2013, the Mill City Farmers Market has awarded almost $67,000 to grantees. The grant program is funded through donations at the market’s annual fundraiser, The Harvest Social, which is coming up on Sunday, September 10th. The event includes and abundant farm-to-table dinner sourced from the market’s vendors, live music, a silent auction and a passionate live auction and Fund-A-Need that directly supports the Market’s grant program.

Moses Momanyi and Lonah Onyancha

Moses Momanyi, a Mill City Farmers Market farmer and grant recipient, will be speaking at the upcoming Harvest Social about the impact the grants have had on his farm. In 2016, Moses and his wife Lonah received a grant to implement an irrigation system on their new 20-acre certified organic vegetable farm, Dawn2Dusk, in Cambridge, MN. The irrigation allowed them to increase the quantity and quality of produce they bring to market every Saturday. A few months later, they also applied for a hardship grant for crop loss due to flooding, ironically. Heavy rains destroyed over $10,000 worth of crops in their fields. While Moses and many other farmers have crop insurance for such events, it rarely covers the full value of the crop. Support from our generous market community makes a huge difference to farms and families in times like these.

In addition to hardship grants, the Organic Field Grant has funded other projects, including: packaging and labeling improvements, trialing new crops and value added products, cool-storage systems, soil improvements, experimenting with new growing techniques and organic certification. The market and its supporters believe that investing in local farmers and food makers through its grant program promotes bio-diversity, reduces pesticide and herbicide use, produces food with greater nutritional content, and benefits the environment. Money spent with local growers and food makers also stays close to home and is reinvested within the community.

Starting this year, the Organic Field Grant is part of the Market’s new Charitable Fund, making all contributions tax-deductible for the first time. The success of the Mill City Farmers Market’s educational programming, grants and food access work over the past eleven years inspired the creation of its new Charitable Fund. Launched as an extension of the successful Mill City Farmers Market, the Charitable Fund shares resources and collaborates with partners to improve community health and well-being.

While the Mill City Farmers Market has been funded by sponsorships and individual donations since its beginning, this new fund will allow the Market to expand the scope, reach and sustainability of its educational and charitable activities.

You can support the Mill City Farmers Market’s Grant Program and Charitable Fund by attending the Harvest Social Benefit on Sunday, September 10th. Enjoy signature cocktails and an abundant farm-to-table dinner prepared by Market Chefs Jenny Breen, Beth Jones and Nettie Colón in the historic Mill City Museum Train Shed. Plus, listen to live music from Orange Mighty Trio and support the market with highly curated silent and live auctions. Purchase your tickets or sponsor a farmer to attend the event by visiting Mill City Farmers Market’s website (http://millcityfarmersmarket.org/support/benefit/).


If you are unable to attend the event, you can donate directly to the event here, to support the markets educational activities, or donate to the Organic Field Grant fund here.

For more information and a summary of past Mill City Farmers Market Organic Field Grant Awardees, visit: http://millcityfarmersmarket.org/learn/farmer-grants/.

Sunday
Aug272017

Shopping Basket from the August 26 Mill City Farmers Market

New in the basket this week: artichokes from GVY Fresh Produce, Body Bliss Hand & Body Creme, Garlic Scape Pesto from Seven Songs Organic Farm, pears from Prairie Hollow Farm, nameko mushrooms from Cherry Tree House Mushrooms, and Barkley's Bistro freeze dried minnows (for a family pet!).

August 26, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Monday
Aug142017

Mill City Cooks: Sweet Corn Ice Cream

Chef Nettie Colon mixed up a batch of Sweet Corn Ice Cream for the August 12 Mill City Cooks demo, using fresh cream and milk from Kappers' Big Red Barn and sweet corn from Nistler Farms.

Recipes prepared at Mill City Cooks demos can be found online.

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

A "corn" hat - how appropriate for this demo! :D

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Per Nettie, don't worry about getting all the silk off the corn, as the mixture will get strained before it goes in the ice cream maker.

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

For demo purposes, Nettie walked thru all the steps, starting with cooking the milk, cream, corn and white sugar. In real life, the mixture would then be allowed to sit overnight in the refrigerator to assure it's super cold when going in the ice cream maker.

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

The chilled mixture then gets blended, followed by straining to remove the kernel pieces and any corn silk.

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Bonus with this recipe - If you misplace your spoon or spatula, you can use a corn cob to work the mixture thru the sieve!

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Finally, the strained mixture goes in the ice cream maker and churns for about 20 minutes.

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Nettie displayed the finished product in a dish created by Fringe and Fettle. She sprinkled on three varieties of salts, which add a little color and enhance the overall flavor.

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Lucky for the audience, Nettie arrived with a box of samples packed in dry ice. The volunteers each had containers of the three salts on their serving trays so that samplers could enjoy their treats with a little extra flavor of their choosing.

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Thank you to Lakewinds Food Co-op for sponsoring the 2017 Mill City Cooks series, and providing fun activities for the little ones (...and adults in the mood for a little coloring!).

May 6, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

May 13, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market 

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Saturday
Aug122017

Shopping Basket from the August 12 Mill City Farmers Market

New in the basket this week: celery from Loon Organics, romanesco from WEI, mozzarella from Cosmic Wheel Creamery, freeze dried cheese curds (for a family pet) from Barkley's Bistro, and Kale Pesto frm Freak Flag Foods.

August 12, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Tuesday
Aug082017

Mill City Cooks: Charred Cauliflower Steaks with Piri Piri Sauce

Chef Nettie Colon prepared Charred Cauliflower Steaks with Piri Piri Sauce atop a fresh salad for the August 5 Mill City Cooks demo.

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Sooo...what is Piri Piri? It's a hot sauce of Portuguese origin (and/or African, depending on who you ask) made with peppers and spices. The version Nettie demo'd included Aleppo chili flakes, cumin seed, coriander, smoked sweet paprika, salt, sugar, cloves, lemon juice, garlic cloves and red wine vinegar. Per Nettie, Allepo chili flakes are hard to come by locally, but you can find them at Penzeys Spices (and who doesn't enjoy an occasional trip to Penzeys?).

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

The sauce comes together in a food processor.

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Nettie explained how to cut cauliflower steaks into wedges rather than even slices to assure as little breakage as possible during the grilling process.

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

She also suggested investing in some inexpensive wire trays to keep vegetables from falling thru your grill grate. The cauliflower steaks are drizzled with olive oil and salt and peppered before going on the grill, 8-10 minutes per side, depending on how hot the grill is and how thick the slices are.

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

The grilled cauliflower was served on a bed of mixed greens and shredded cabbage tossed with sliced carrots, along with a sprinkle of forbidden rice.

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Nettie discussed the benefits of forbidden rice. It is a variety said to have disease-fighting antioxidants, as well as dietary fiber, anti-inflammatory properties, and the ability to help stop the development of diabetes, cancer and heart disease. 

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Once plated, Nettie gave the dishes an extra drizzle of olive oil, and topped them with an edible Nasturtium.

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Recipes prepared at Mill City Cooks demos can be found online.

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Thank you to Lakewinds Food Co-op for sponsoring the 2017 Mill City Cooks series, and providing fun activities for the little ones!

May 6, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

May 13, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market 

Monday
Aug072017

Complimentary Sweet Corn and Shopping Bags at the August 8 Tuesday Night Market at The Commons

So far the weather report is looking perfect for the August 8 Tuesday Night Market at The Commons, and an extra incentive to check it out is a free half dozen of sweet corn, compliments of Mill City Farmers Market sponsor, Cynthia Froid Group.

2017 MCFM Night Market

The Tuesday Night Market is open 3:30pm to 7:30pm (the corn give-away is 4p-6p at the Nistler Farms booth, while supplies last). You'll find produce, meat, cheese, baked goods, prepared foods, food trucks, music - not to mention an entire park to relax and play in. The Commons has a huge cart full of games and toys, so the kids won't get bored.

Also at the August 8 Night Market: Farmers Markets of MPLS will be giving away free reusable bags and children’s books near the information booth. Farmers Markets of MPLS is a collaborative of Minneapolis’ 27 farmers markets, fostering the vitality of the City’s farmers markets through strategic and informed innovation, advocacy, education, and cohesive partnerships.

2017 MCFM Night Market

2017 MCFM Night Market

2017 MCFM Night Market

Saturday
Aug052017

Shopping Basket from the August 5 Mill City Farmers Market

All kinds of new treats in the basket this week: melons from Nistler Farms and Loon Organics, apples and a sugar beet from Prairie Hollow Farm, Chinese Long Beans from the Bean Market, and tomatillos from Mhonpaj’s Garden.

August 5, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Thursday
Aug032017

Get to Know Freak Flag Foods - New at the 2017 Mill City Farmers Market  

Freak Flag Foods is new at the 2017 Mill City Farmers Market, and with Fred Haberman at the helm, they're on a mission to make the world more sustainable, delicious and fun. Partnering with Urban Organics and The Good Acre for ingredients, they've created sassy sauces and encourage you to "spread it, mix it, dollop or dip it."

Find them on the MCFM's expansion space (in front of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) building, across from the main Market plaza).

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

There are currently three varieties: Red Sauce, Kale Pesto and Green Sauce. Ingredient for each are shown in the below photos, and the captions offer some serving suggestions (obtained from their website).

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers MarketRed Sauce: Mix it with tomato sauce for perfect enchiladas. Add it to tomato sauce and butter for Indian inspired curry sauce. Heat it with coconut milk, chicken and sweet peppers for Thai inspired soup.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers MarketKale Pesto: Spread it on your favorite sandwiches, burgers or wraps. Toss it with hot or cold cooked pasta.Spoon it over sliced tomatoes or other veggies.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers MarketGreen Sauce: Spread it onto flat bread for amazing pizzas. Make it a marinade for grilling meats, fish, tempeh and veggies. Mix it with cream cheese and goat cheese for a tasty spread.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Does the woman holding the bag look familiar? That's none other than Mary Jane Miller from the Sustainable Farming Association (SFA)! She has served as a guest chef for the Mill City Cooks demos over the years.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Wednesday
Aug022017

Mill City Cooks: Fennel Basil Pasta Salad and Whipped Feta & Harissa Crostini

Jill Holter of Lakewinds Food Co-op was the guest chef for the July 29 Mill City Cooks demo. She prepared two recipes - Fennel Basil Pasta Salad and Whipped Feta & Harissa Crostini.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

For the Fennel Basil Pasta Salad, Jill used noodles from Dumpling & Strand, zucchini, sweet corn, green onions, basil, cherry tomatoes, GYST fermented fennel, olive oil, white wine vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Jill cooked the pasta first. While the pasta cooled, she grilled the zucchini, onions and corn. 

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

After grilling, the veggies were chopped and tossed with the noodles, along with the basil, cherry tomatoes, fermented fennel and olive oil.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

For the Whipped Feta & Harissa Crostini, Jill used bread from Salty Tart, feta from Singing Hills Goat Dairy, Greek yogurt, Caldo Foods harissa, lemon juice, GYST Golden Beet Pickles and green onion for garnish.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

The beets are diced for garnish.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Jill used a whisk to mix together the feta, yogurt, harissa and lemon juice.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Jill presented the completed recipes on dishes from Joanna Buyert of Fringe & Fettle Ceramics.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Recipes prepared at Mill City Cooks demos can be found online.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

Thank you to Lakewinds Food Co-op for sponsoring the 2017 Mill City Cooks series, and providing fun activities for the little ones!

May 6, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market

May 13, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market 

Sunday
Jul302017

Shopping Basket from the July 29 Mill City Farmers Market

New in the basket this week: European sandwich pickles, sweet peppers, sweet corn, eggplant and Freak Flag Foods Organic Red Sauce.

July 29, 2017 Mill City Farmers Market