We will Weather the Weather Together
Markets Open this Weekend
Howdy Market Goers!
Winter weather is visiting Jefferson County this week and weekend. Starting with frost reaching Port Townsend gardens on Tuesday morning, the week has shaped up to be a wet one. That said, the Port Townsend and Chimacum Farmers Markets will be open this weekend. Our beloved local farmers are bringing fresh vegetables, apples, pears, meat and eggs to market Saturday and Sunday. Come on out to the Port Townsend and Chimacum Farmers Markets and help support our farms and local economy.
Considering the inclement weather, Kale Day has been rescheduled to October 22nd. Join us on October 22nd from 9am to 2pm on Tyler Street for a chef demo by Jefferson Healthcare’s Executive Chef, Arran Stark. There will also be lots of fresh kale at market. Yum!
It is great soup weather. Here is a Portuguese Kale and Potato Soup recipe from chef and author, Alice Waters. This recipe is published in Chez Panisse Vegetables, 1996 by HarperCollins Publishers.
- 1 Bunch kale
- 2 Pounds potatoes
- 2 Quarts Water
- 1 Teaspoon salt
- Optional: 1 garlic sausage and a splash of extra virgin olive oil
“Directions: Remove the stems from the kale, wash and cut the leaves into a chiffonade [long-thing strips]. You should have about 6 to 8 cups.
“Peel the potatoes and chop them up very fine (Yellow Finns are good for this – or use some other flavorful boiling potatoes). Bring the water to a boil with the salt. Add the chopped potatoes, return to a boil, and cook for 2 minutes, covered. Add the kale and cook 2 minutes more. Taste for seasoning. If desired, serve with slices garlic sausage heated briefly in the soup and a splash of olive oil.
“Note: the proportions of kale to potatoes in this soup is not terribly important. Nor do you need to chop the potatoes. You can also run the soup through a food mill or food processor and serve it as a puree; replace water with chicken stock; or enrich it with other vegetables.”
- October 22nd: Kale Day 9am-2pm, chef demo by Arran Stark 9:30-11am, Port Townsend Saturday Farmers Market, Tyler Street
- October 30th: Halloween Market and Closing Day of the Chimacum Farmers Market, 10am-2pm, Chimacum Corner Farmstand
Local Farm, Local Family
Willow Wind Farm, Mikiya & Zach Brayton
Willow Wind Farm has been vending at the Port Townsend Saturday Farmers Market since 2007. Owned and operated by Mikiya and Zach Brayton, Willow Wind is a flower and mixed vegetable farm as well as nursery. The success of this small business is rooted in family, with the Port Townsend Farmers Market playing an important role as a platform for the business to connect with our community.
Mikiya is a fifth generation Jefferson County native. After graduating from Edmonds Community College with a certificate in ornamental plants, Mikiya worked as a landscaper and at nurseries in the Seattle area. It was a job with a plant wholesaler off of Egg and I Road that brought Mikiya back to the peninsula. When that nursery when out of business Mikiya, with support from her family, purchased the remaining plants and started her own small business selling plants from the parking lot of Rhody Drive Storage, a family-owned business.
She and Zach met in this same parking lot. They hit it off over talk of plants. He, also from Jefferson County, was working in construction at the time. When the housing market went down hill in 2008, Zach and Mikiya joined forces tending the farm, vending at the Port Townsend Farmers Market and growing their farm and nursery at Four Corners.
Mikiya and Zach first started growing flowers for their wedding. Today, flowers are an important part of their summer income. Willow Wind also focuses on a wide variety of pepper and tomatoes as well as some mixed vegetables, orchard fruit and plants, many of which Mikiya propagates herself. Shrubs sold by Willow Wind are sourced from Washington State. Mikiya is very committed to sourcing plants from the region and caring for them using organic methods and fertilizers to ensure that they are acclimated to this environment and that Willow Wind offers high-quality products to the community Mikiya and Zach hold so dear.
Running a small business is a challenge and labor of love. Zach and Mikiya’s four-year old daughter, Ayla, is a big inspiration for their hard work. “Farmers throw down every dime at the beginning of the season to get started,” says Mikiya. “When you have kids something changes. You have to make the most of every day, and make the most of your land and what it can produce.”
“The Port Townsend Farmers Market definitely was an important building block for our business,” says Mikiya. “It provides a space for businesses to get themselves out there. Our booth at the market is like our business card. It helps introduce people in Port Townsend to what we offer as a farm and nursery, and it brings people to our business.”
As much as the Port Townsend Farmers Market has been an incubator for Willow Wind, Mikiya and Zach’s family is the backbone that holds this small farm together. A wide circle of Mikiya’s extended family live in Port Townsend and Jefferson County. Her parents are actively involved with the farm. Both of her parents assist at the farmers market and her dad helps tend the beehives, mows, and maintains the orchard and farm equipment. “Without all of us working together,” says Mikaya, “there would be big holes to fill. We are a family farm.”
You can find Willow Wind Farm in the middle row of the Port Townsend Farmers Market at the corner of Lawrence and Tyler Streets. Introduce yourself to Mikiya, Zach and Ayla and check out their beautiful bouquets. Willow Wind Farm is soon to close its retail business for the season but they will still be at market with tomatoes, peppers and flowers. For more information, check out their Facebook page.
From Our Vendors
SpringRain still has gorgeous, big heirloom tomatoes and will until the first freeze. Stop on by for a lovely Striped Brandywine, Mortgage Lifter, or Pineapple to take home.
Red Dog has a ton of beautiful broccoli for sale. Celeriac and celery still coming on strong. Winter squash is amazing right now and very sweet.
Millbrook Clayworks will have some fun new kale cups at market for Kale Day on October 22nd. Come check out their new designs.