Saturday, June 26, 2010

Homemade Broth

Broth is one of those often overlooked components of a recipe. One that is not given the respect and attention it deserves as the foundation of a soup, sauce or braise. People seem to be overwhelmed at the thought of making their own broth with fresh, quality ingredients. Whether it is the perception that it takes too long, or requires too much preparation, or is just easier to drop in a cube of insta-broth...we are all prone to opt for the short cuts. But once you make your own broth and taste the difference, there is no going back. The depth and richness flavor, the endless varieties that can be paired with the dish you are making - broth matter.

This Sunday, Montavilla Farmers Market Resident Chef Kathryn Yeomans will demonstrate and discuss the merits of homemade stocks and broths in the first of her monthly market culinary demos. Make sure to be at the market at 10:30 tomorrow morning to get the blow by blow, hands on, detailed guide on how to transform your broth-based recipes from ho-hum to wow.

For more on Yeomans' Sage Culinary Advice, visit her Farmers Feast blog.

Meat Broth

makes about 2 ½ quarts

In Italy, it is common for many types of meat to go into a broth, or brodo, depending on what is available. Leftover roast or bones from a roast, such as beef, pork, or chicken, can be used, as well as marrow bones, which give the broth gelatin (which gives it body and makes for a rich flavor). This broth is sometimes served as a first course, simply garnished with a bit of pasta (often maltagliata, meaning “badly cut”, which are the end scraps from making homemade pasta), a drizzle of olive oil, and a grating of Parmesan cheese. It is a wonderful restorative, and can be frozen in quart containers, plastic zipper bags, or even ice cube trays, so that you can pull out as little or as much as you need.

5 pounds mixed meat and bones – (such as 2 pounds of boneless stew meat, like chuck, 1 pound of pork shoulder, 1 ½ pounds of marrow bones – about 4 - or oxtails, and a chicken carcass)

5 quarts of water

2 medium yellow onions, peeled

2 small carrots, peeled

1 large rib celery

1 medium potato, peeled

3 each whole canned tomatoes

a quarter of a red pepper, seeded, optional

1 tsp. black peppercorns

a couple of sprigs of thyme, optional

2 tsp. kosher salt

Place the meat in a large stockpot. Cover with water. Bring to a boil. As the foam (or scum) rises to the surface, skim it off and discard. When the pot reaches a boil, reduce the heat to a gentle but steady simmer. Continue to skim as needed.

After the stock has been simmering for an hour, add the vegetables and aromatics, including salt. Continue to cook for another 2 hours. The broth is done when it has developed a rich, meaty flavor, and has reduced by about a third to half.

Let the broth settle for 20 minutes. Strain the broth through a colander or strainer. Discard bones. Strain again through a colander lined with dampened cheesecloth. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until cold. Cover and keep refrigerated, using within 4 days, or freeze for longer storage. Remove and discard the solid fat that has congealed on the surface before re-heating the broth.

Chicken Broth I

makes 2 ½ quarts

This is a light, flavorful broth. You can use the chicken meat as well as the liquid. With the meat, I make soup, simmer it with sauce and serve it over pasta or rice, make chicken salad, and sandwiches. Slather the meat with barbecue sauce and grill the legs over hot coals or bake them in the oven. Or if you’re ambitious, you can even use the chicken to make tamales!

4 pounds chicken legs and thighs

4 quarts water

2 tsp. kosher salt

Add the chicken to a large stockpot, along with the water. Bring to a boil. As the foam (or scum) rises to the surface, skim it off and discard. When the pot reaches a boil, reduce the heat to a gentle but steady simmer. Continue to skim as needed.

Add the salt and continue to simmer for 30 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pot and check it for doneness. Continue to simmer the chicken-less stock for 30 minutes. Strain the broth through a colander or strainer lined with dampened cheesecloth. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until cold. Cover and keep refrigerated, using within 4 days, or freeze for longer storage. Remove and discard the solid fat that has congealed on the surface before re-heating the broth.

Chicken Broth II

makes 2 quarts

For a more aromatic broth, try this version.

1 pound chicken parts (a package of wings, or backs and necks are ideal, or you can use legs) – note: never use the liver for broth, as it will impart a bitter flavor. The giblets (heart, gizzard), on the other hand, are fantastic for broth.

1 chicken carcass, either leftover from a roast, or one that is raw from which the meat has been removed (join us for our Montavilla Farmers Market Culinary Demo, “Chicken Breakdown” on September 26, 2010!)

3 quarts water

1 tsp. kosher salt

1 medium onion, peeled and quartered

1 small carrot, peeled and halved lengthwise

1 medium celery rib

1-2 cloves of garlic

1 bay leaf

½ tsp. black peppercorns

2 sprigs fresh thyme

1 sprig parsley

Add the chicken parts and carcass to a large stockpot, along with the water. Bring to a boil. As the foam (or scum) rises to the surface, skim it off and discard. When the pot reaches a boil, reduce the heat to a gentle but steady simmer. Continue to skim as needed.

Add the vegetables, aromatics, and salt and continue to simmer for 1 hour.

Let the broth settle for 20 minutes. Strain the broth through a colander or strainer. Discard bones. Strain again through a colander lined with dampened cheesecloth. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until cold. Cover and keep refrigerated, using within 4 days, or freeze for longer storage. Remove and discard the solid fat that has congealed on the surface before re-heating the broth.

Vegetable Broth

Adapted from The Glorious Soups and Stews of Italy by Domenica Marchetti

makes 6-7 cups broth

I love this vegetable broth for its clean, clear flavor. A little white wine gives the broth a little extra body.

2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

2 carrots, peeled, trimmed, and cut into 2-inch pieces

2 celery ribs, peeled, trimmed, and cut into 2-inch pieces

1 yellow onion, quartered

1 leek, white and light green parts, washed, trimmed, and cut into 1-inch pieces

stalks and feathery leaves from 1 bulb fennel (reserve bulb for another use)

2 cloves garlic, lightly crushed with the flat side of a knife blade

5 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley, including stems, coarsely chopped

2 sprigs fresh marjoram

2 sprigs fresh thyme

½ tsp. black peppercorns

½ cup dry white wine

8 cups (2 quarts) water

1 tsp. kosher or sea salt

In a heavy-bottomed stockpot, heat the olive oil over a medium flame. Add all the vegetables and aromatics, except salt, and sauté, stirring from time to time, for about 10 minutes, until the vegetables have softened and the onion is pale gold. Raise the heat to medium-high and add the wine. Let the wine bubble for 2 minutes, then add the water and salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer gently for 45 minutes. The broth is done when it has reduced slightly and has a full flavor. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt.

Strain the broth through a fine-meshed sieve lined with dampened cheesecloth. Use the back of a wooden spoon to press down on the solids, extracting as much liquid as possible. Discard the solids. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until cold. Cover and keep refrigerated, using within 4 days, or freeze for longer storage.

Mushroom Broth

makes 2-2 ½ quarts

This broth is suitable for mushroom risotto or soups. It makes an excellent vegetarian gravy base. It can be used in place of vegetable broth when you desire a mushroomy flavor. I have lots of recipes on my blog, The Farmer’s Feast, , using mushroom broth.

I’ve found that the best way to accumulate mushroom trimmings is to place a plastic zipper bag or small plastic container in the freezer and add mushroom scraps to it as you collect them. When you have enough, this broth comes together easily.

1 pound mushroom trim from wild and cultivated mushrooms, 1 pound mushrooms (less fresh, but not slimy or stinky, older mushrooms work wonderfully

¼ ounce dried porcini mushrooms

½ a small onion, peeled and halved, or 1 leek top (dark and light green part), cleaned and halved, or 2 good-sized shallots, peeled and halved

2 small garlic cloves

½ tsp. black peppercorns

2 sprigs fresh thyme

1 small bay leaf

2 tsp. kosher salt

3 quarts water

Add all of the ingredients to a stockpot. Bring to a boil. As the foam (or scum) rises to the surface, skim it off and discard. When the pot reaches a boil, reduce the heat to a gentle but steady simmer. Continue to skim as needed. Simmer gently for 1 hour.

Let the broth settle for 20 minutes. Strain the broth through a colander or strainer, using a wooden spoon to press down on the solids, extracting as much liquid as possible. Discard the solids. Strain again through a colander lined with dampened cheesecloth. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until cold. Cover and keep refrigerated, using within 4 days, or freeze for longer storage. Sometimes, a brownish-gray film will rise to the surface of the cooled mushroom broth. Simply skim off this film before re-heating.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Montavilla from 1980 to 2010

I recently had an interesting chat with long time board member and even longer time neighborhood resident Beth Kluvers (the woman on the left in the photo) about the evolutionary and revolutionary changes that have taken place since she first called Montavilla home. Beth and her husband bought their home a couple of blocks from the market site in 1980 at a time when all the cool kids were abandoning Portland to live on the Westside and further into Beaverton. Beth and Paul intended for it to be a starter home, but 30 years later, a family raised, a small business established, here they remain with deep roots into the community.
When I asked Beth what drew them to the neighborhood she said it was because of the potential that she saw on Stark Street. Beth grew up in the neighborhood and attended Madison High School. She had fond memories of that time. In 1980, there were a few familiar places a current resident of Montavilla would recognize – Mr. Plywood and Flying Pie Pizza were already fixtures in the community. But beyond that, not much. Bipartisan CafĂ© wouldn’t show up on the scene for another 20 years. Businesses would come and go, but not many would last. Storefronts were mostly vacant or underutilized. There was even a Montavilla Department Store that seemed to have held onto its 1950 inventory well beyond its fashionable lifespan, smelling musty and faintly like mothballs.
One of the most noticeable absences was the utter lack of children. All of Beth’s neighbors were in their 80s or 90s and on more than one occasion their passing meant that a house would be torn down and replaced with a “snout” house. While change happened over time, it happened slowly. But it took many years before families with small children regained a foothold. Beth certainly didn’t think it would take over 2 decades for momentum to build, but build it did and roughly 6 years ago, things just exploded with new restaurants and shops opening up….and staying open, drawing crowds and earning regular customers. Even in the past couple of years, the influx of new storefronts has been astonishing and SE Stark Street boasts a retail lineup to rival any other around the city.
Beth has always been interested in cooking and eating well, perhaps in part due to the fact that family dinnertime when she was growing up meant a box of macaroni and cheese or a frozen chicken pot pie. She recalls the days when being a part of a food buying club meant meeting in people’s basements to divide up a 20 pound brick of cheese or opening up big vats of peanut butter that had to be stirred with big paddles and then divyed up into smaller, usable containers. The Daily Grind on Hawthorn (now the site of an under-construction New Seasons) was one of the few close places to go for buying in bulk or sprouted bread. This was before Natures NW, Wild Oats, New Seasons or Whole Foods ever stepped foot on the Portland food scene. You definitely had to be creative and take charge of your food buying to eat sustainably or locally. And organic? I don't even know if that was a vocabulary word.
On one fateful morning just over 4 years ago, the Montavilla/East Tabor Business Association called a meeting at 9 am on a Saturday at the Flying Pie for anyone interested in talking about the possibility of starting a farmers market. 50 people showed up. The Portland Farmers Market, veterans in the industry, cautioned that at best it would take 2 years to be able to pull it off. A mere 4 months later, the first Montavilla Farmers Market was held. And the rest, as they say, is history. A history that is still being written, and one in which we each play a role.
I'd love to hear from the rest of the long have you been in the neighborhood and what have you seen?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Vendor Profile: Kitchen Dances

You don't have to be a vegan or even a vegetarian to enjoy one of Montavilla Farmers Markets new food vendors. New to the market but certainly not new to the Portland vegan food movement, Piper Dixon is serving up food that you can eat with a clean conscience. Not just because it's animal product-free, but because you can rest assured knowing that you have done your taste buds a favor. On opening day, I ordered the breakfast burrito smothered in mushroom gravy (and a beautiful crimson strawberry for garnish). It was enormous. And scrumptious. I'm going back for more next week. You should too.

To quote from a recent Portland MIX magazine review of the best farmers market food had this to say about Kitchen Dances: "Vegan and gluten free are the new buzzwords among market vendors, and this one goes one better by arriving on a bike. Neighborhood resident and urban farmer Piper Dixon plans to offer unique and delicious wraps with both flour and — get this — sturdy greens such as collards for the wrappers. These are then stuffed with vegetables grown in his garden and drizzled with savory-sweet sauces. Considering he was a former partner in neighborhood hot spot Proper Eats, he’ll no doubt have an instant following. "
Count me in as one of the instant following. If you are looking for a good excuse to explore more meat-free meals, check out Piper's extensive list of cookbook recommendations below.

1. Kitchen Dances specializes in vegan and raw foods, using fresh , seasonal ingredients. We support local farms and supplement with produce that we grow ourselves. It is extremely important for us to serve a quality, healthy product which represents the values of Northwest Vegan cuisine; compassionate, creative food infused and inspired with Northwest ideals and ingredients. I want our food to nourish the community and introduce some to the possibilities with vegan cuisine.

2. The biggest challenge is to grow a support base for a business so that it can sustain itself and provide a living wage for all involved. With that said, I believe in the values and quality of our food and am confident that Kitchen Dances can and will be a success concerning the parameters listed previously. There is a market for the type of cuisine that we represent and based on my connections from previous ventures and the supporters of the Montavilla Farmers Market, this will be a great year for Kitchen Dances to firmly establish itself and grow throughout the year.

3. In general, continuing to strengthen all aspects of the local food system. This includes, educating people to the importance, values and benefits of supporting local family farms and producers, providing healthy food to the children of our community and the meaningful relationships around growing our own food and eating together. As a community, we should be concerned with providing as much food (and other goods) for ourselves before we look outside our home base. Our main question, should be how do and will we feed ourselves? We should be looking to build up our local food base and economy in direct contrast to the globalized food system that has developed over the past few decades.

4. The Montavilla Farmers Market is my community market. I live in the neighborhood and based on my ideals, it only makes sense to be a part of and to support this market. Based on my experiences with other farmers markets, I believe that the smaller, community based markets provide the most opportunity for meaningful relationships with its members.

5. I have been inspired by Isa Chandra Moskowitz's books (Veganomicon, Vegan with a Vengence, Etc.), Sarah Kramer and Tanya Barnard's (How it all Vegan, The Garden of Vegan) and Sarah's (La Dolce Vegan), Ron Picarski's (Eco-Cuisine), Jeremy Safron's The Raw Truth, Myra Kornfeld and George Minot's (The Voluptuous Vegan), and The Candle Cafe's Cookbook among others. I do believe that is important for cooks to develop a level of comfort with food that they can create meals based on what is at hand, knowing that it can and will be enjoyed.

6. Books: Wendell Berry (Bringing it to the Table, The Art of the Commonplace, The Unsettling of America, etc.), Michal Pollan (The Omnivore's Dilemma, In Defense of Food), Tom Robbins (The Food Revolution, Diet for a New America), Heather Flores (Food Not Lawns), The Fatal Harvest Reader edited by Andrew Kimbrell, Paul Roberts (The End of Food), Peter Singer (The Ethics of What We Eat), Erik Markus (Meat Market), Carlo Petrini (Slow Food Nation, Slow Food Revolution), Daniel Imhoff (Food Fight), to list just a few!

Magazine: Gastronomica

Movies: Earthlings, Food Inc., The Future of Food

Sunday, June 20, 2010

An Abundance of Strawberry (Jam)

And so begins the season of abundance. This weekend, I drove out to Sauvie Island for my first of many trips to the U-pick farms to stock up on berries. My fiance and I have an annual tradition of picking berries, making our own jam and loading up the freezer to last us through the year (if we ration it just right). We will make 3-4 trips over the course of the summer, starting in June with strawberries, moving onto blueberries and raspberries in July and then wrapping up with marionberries and peaches in August. One particularly well-fated year of camping we even were able to add 15 pounds of huckleberries from the Indian Heaven Wilderness near Mt Adams to our quota.
There is nothing quite like jam made at home with berries that were plucked from the ground 5 hours ago. The taste can't compare to commercially produced products. They are so sweet that adding too much sugar would adulterate the flavor and cover up the natural sweetness.
This summer, I am getting married and we decided there would be no more perfect wedding favor than our homemade jam. To make 100 half-pint sized containers, I somehow erroneously thought we would need to pick 60 lbs of strawberries. Boy, was I wrong. We could have gotten by with a third of that amount. I chalk it up to the mental contortions of converting pounds of whole berries to cups of mushed berries, quadrupling recipes, and trying to remember how many cups are in a quart. But I can think of worse fates than having too many strawberries. In addition to 48 half pints for the wedding, we ended up with an additional 17 pints of jam for our own personal consumption, 7 gallons of frozen berries and a gallon of strawberry puree that we will save to make triple berry jam once the blueberries and raspberries are ready to pick in a couple of weeks. It only took us a mere 8 hours to process the 75 pounds that we picked in an hour and 20 minutes. Ah, but the work will be well worth it in March when we are still tasting summer on our morning toast and smoothies.
We picked 80% Shuksans and 20% Hoods. I opt for Pomona's Pectin when I make jam because the low sugar recipes set up well, even with half the normal amount found in some other recipes. Pomona's is available at New Season's for just over $4 a box that makes 2-4 recipes. The reason it works with low to no sugar is the use of calcium instead of sugar to activate the pectin. This means you can also substitute other sweeteners like honey, sucanat and xylitol - a bonus for those of us trying to cut sugar out of our diets.

Low Sugar Strawberry Jam
1 batch = 4 - 5 cups of jam
4 cups of mashed fruit
1/2 c honey or 3/4 c sugar
2 tsp Pomona's Universal Pectin
2 tsp calcium water

Prep your jam jars: Wash and rinse jars; let stand in hot water. Bring lids and rings to a boil; turn down heat; let stand in hot water while you prepare your jam.
Prep your fruit: Following the instructions from Pomona, make the calcium water by dissolving the smaller packet in the box with 1/2 cup water. I put this in an old jam jar to store in the fridge between jam making episodes.
Put the fruit into a large, heavy bottom pot. Add the calcium water.
In a separate bowl, combine 1 cup sugar or room-temperature honey with the pectin from the second, larger packet in the box. Mix well.
Bring fruit to a boil over medium-high heat; add the sugar-pectin mixture and stir vigorously for 2 minutes until pectin and sugar is dissolved. Return to the boil and remove from heat.
Pour into canning jars, leaving 1/4″ head space, and seal with lid and ring. Place jars in boiling water to cover for 10 minutes (this is what allows the jam to be shelf stable and not spoil - do not skimp on the time at this stage). The lids will make an audible pop when they cool, indicating that the seal has formed. Jam lasts about 3 weeks once opened and refrigerated.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Vendor Profile: Frog Meadow Farms

Even though the name is new, the vendors faces should be familiar to you. Formerly Hassing Farms, the Montavilla Farmers Market is happy to welcome them back under their new name, Frog Meadow Farms. Frog Meadow specialized in biodynamic heirloom berries and vegetables. In principle, biodynamic agriculture goes beyond organic, envisioning the farm as a self-contained and self-sustaining organism. Farmers avoid chemical pesticides and fertilizers, utilize compost and cover crops. Waste of one part of the farm becomes the energy for another and ultimately makes the farm sustainable. Operating a farm following these principles requires a deep and holistic understanding of how the ecosystem functions - how inputs become outputs, which in turn become inputs for another process. Truly fascinating. When you get a moment, stop by Frog Meadow Farms and ask them to explain how it all works......

Frog Meadow Farms
1) What types of products do you specialize in? We specialize in growing bio-dynamic heirloom Berries and Vegetables.

2) What are your biggest challenges in operating a farm/business? And what makes it all worth it? The biggest challenge for our farm is looking into the future and deciding what people will want, and getting people to try new vegetables they have never tried or seen before.

What makes it all worth it for us is knowing we are able to contribute in provide good quality food to others tables as well as our own. The steady move towards being self sufficient and sustainable is a huge motivating factor in the operation of our farm.

3) What food policy issues do you think are critical to the future of agriculture in Oregon? We feel that the number one issue is keeping clean seed sources that are uncontaminated by GMO and encouraging the move back to small local farming.

4) Why do you chose Montavilla Farmers Market to sell your products?

The people. They are always happy and happy to see us. All customers and vendors alike have been very welcoming and fun to be around

5) Do you have a favorite cookbook that you cook from?

With one of us being a chef it is difficult for us to choose just one cookbook. A lot of recipes are in our mental cookbook, which we are always willing to share. But if we had to choose it would be Country Harvest or Putting it up with Honey

6) What food/agriculture related book, magazine or movie would you recommend?

We would recommend the movie Food Inc
Book- Organic Gardening Made Simple

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Adam Sappington's Country Cat Collard Greens

This week at opening day, we were fortunate to have our weekly chef demo led by Montavilla's very own Adam Sappington of the Country Cat. Adam has garnered the title of PDX's Iron Chef two years running and has also honored the Montavilla Farmers Market by preparing the feast for the market's Harvest Dinner the past three years. A former chef at the distinguished Wildwood, Adam has been cooking the food of his childhood at 79th and Stark since 2007. Each week they use 175 pounds of bacon, butcher their own meat, cure their own bacon, render their own lard, tallow and duck fat. And they use a lot of produce too - all sourced from local markets of course.
This week Adam showed us how to make a staple of their menu - collard greens. The two key elements of this recipe, as any self-respecting southern chef will tell you, are bacon and time - 2 1/2 hours of low, slow heat. But if you can't wait that long, you can always just head over to the Country Cat and order yourself a plate from the menu. They are now open for brunch and dinner every day of the week. Tell them you heard it at the Montavilla Farmer's Market.

Adam Sappington's Country Cat Collard Greens
serves 4
2 bunches collard greens, stems removed and cut into larger pieces
2 yellow onion, peeled and julienned
1/2 l.b bacon, cubed
1/2 c apple cider vinegar
1/2 c sherry vinegar
2 qt. chicken stock (also known as 8 cups)
2 T unsalted butter
salt and pepper to taste

In a medium sized stock pot, melt butter and add bacon. Saute bacon until crispy. Remove bacon from the pot and set aside. Reserve the fat. Add the onions and gently stew until lightly caramelized and soft. Add the bacon, both vinegars, and chicken stock. Season with salt and pepper. When the liquid begins to simmer, add the chopped collards. Stir to incorporate. Cover pot and cook on low to medium heat for approximately 2 1/2 hours or until collards are very tender.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Opening Day just around the corner

Yesterday, as I stared out the window at the sheets of rain pelting the already soggy ground all I could think about was how much better next Sunday was going to be. Not necessarily because we are guaranteed sunshine (though I will put in a request for at least no rain) but because it is finally time for the Montavilla Farmers Market to open for the season.
Other markets opened in April or May and I've been to visit once or twice. But it's not quite the same experience for me as going to the Montavilla market. In a world where it seems like everyone is in a hurry to get somewhere and crowds of people press in on you from all sides - even at farmers markets. The Montavilla Farmers Market makes me feel different - more relaxed, I breathe slower and find comfort in the thought that I will not have to throw an elbow to get the last bunch of basil. Markets are about buying farm direct, local produce of course. You'll get that no matter which farmers market you go to.
What draws me to farmers markets is the sense of community that you get by being there. Running into your neighbors, enjoying being outside listening to music, the knowledge that your very presence at the market adds life and vitality to the neighborhood. This is why I am involved in the Montavilla Farmers Market and this is why I'm happy that Sunday is opening day.
I'd love to from you. What are you most looking forward to about opening day? Is it a particular food item, or a fond memory from last year? Add your thoughts below.

For pictures from last year's market to inspire and excite you, visit our Photobucket page.

Sunday, June 13th - Opening Day
10 AM - 2 PM
7600 block of SE Stark St; across the street from Mr Plywood

Vendor Profile: Liquid Sunshine

After the soggy spring that we've had it only seemed appropriate that we should kick off our vendor profiles with one of our returning vendors, Liquid Sunshine. What an absolutely perfect name. Not only does it describe the product - fresh squeezed lemonade with complex and complementary flavors mixed in. It also describes the personality of the man behind the juicer - Clint 'Trip' Bissell. If you haven't been on the receiving end of his infectious energy and wonderfully booming voice, you are in for a treat this summer. Check out his Pomegranate and Lavender Lemonade blends. Now that's sunshine in a glass. Welcome back, Trip!

Clint "Trip" Bissell, Liquid Sunshine Lemonade.

1) What types of products do you specialize in?

Fresh Squeezed Lemonade with all natural flavors. This season I am featuring a rotating guest flavor each week. Mango, an Oregon 4 Berry Blend, Jalapeno, Lavender, Pomegranate... So many exciting combinations to try! I am looking for more unique ideas, so please send any suggestions to I am also on Facebook at Become a fan to learn about weekly flavors, locations, and special deals. I will be set up downtown Monday-Friday this summer and will be using Facebook to communicate with my fans. I am also featuring LSLCAPC's this year. (Liquid Sunshine Lemonade Customer Appreciation Punch Cards) LOL

2) What are your biggest challenges in operating a business? And what makes it all worth it?

The biggest challenge is Portland's short Lemonade season! LOL I really only have three months of good weather that I attempt to stretch out to five. It is all worth it when people tell me how much they love my product and return to say hello each week. When I see people at the grocery store, library, or movies they call me "The Lemonade Guy" and tell their friends how awesome my fresh squeezed lemonade is. That is why I do what I do. I may not be changing the world, but I am bringing a little happiness and sunshine into peoples lives!

4) Why do you chose Montavilla Farmers Market to sell your products?

The Montavilla Farmers Market is all about the neighborhood! The neighborhood wants the market there and supports it. And in return the market is there for it's neighbors. This symbiotic relationship is essential. However, it is missing at many of the farmers markets around Portland. I have been to many markets where the neighborhood, local businesses, and market managers are constantly bickering and fighting. It is not conducive to good business or healthy for the community. Nobody wins. But at Montavilla the Market Managers, vendors, local businesses, and customers are fantastic! It is a pleasure to attend the Montavilla Farmers Market each week.

5) Do you have a favorite cookbook that you cook from?

The Joy of Cooking. My mom bought me a copy when I left for college. I like that it does not make any assumptions. It explains everything in fine detail. Almost as though it understands how little I really know! LOL

Thursday, June 3, 2010

MIX magazine previews MFM ready-to-eat vendors

In the upcoming weeks, we will be posting features of each of our vendors so you have a chance to get to know a little more about the people behind the products. I already really excited and think this will be a great opportunity to make our cozy market feel even more like a gathering of friends.

Until then, pick up a copy of MIX magazine, the foodie’s monthly publication from the Oregonian. Turn to page 35 and read about five of our ready-to-eat vendors. Whether you're vegan, gluten-free or someone who really enjoys your meat, we will be able to satisfy your cravings. From vegan wraps to ke-babs, crab cakes and Thai, we have some amazing new goodies to tempt you with as you shop at the market for your weekly produce. Now that our secret is out, make sure you get there early to beat the lines that are bound to form.