It is mid-July and the Port Townsend and Chimacum Farmers Markets are in their prime. This glorious time of year almost everything is in season. You can still find spring fava beans, salad greens, radishes and peas. At the same time, berries, summer squash, cucumbers and even tomatoes are making their appearance at market. Last Saturday, I was surprised to see the first of the eggplant and a second round of artichokes.
It is an especially plentiful time for berries at the PT and Chimacum Farmers Markets. This week you can find strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, sylvanberries, marionberries and currants at our markets. These super delicious “superfoods” pack tones of flavor as well as antioxidants and vitamins, which help prevent disease and reduce signs of aging. Berries also support heart health, cancer prevention, brain function and weight loss. Wow!
In honor of berry abundance, we are celebrating this Saturday with Berry Day at the PT Farmers Market. Chef Arran Stark will fix up something yummy with local berries starting at 9:30am. Several of our prepared food vendors will also serve dishes with local berries. Some of the fun prepared foods to look forward to include: Crust berry pies, Scoops Brats and Nuts berry pancakes, raw raspberry creme torte and raw wild-berry cobbler from Sol Food, Finnriver blueberry croissants from Sweet Lamb Baking Company and berry tea from the Salmon Cart. Finnriver Cidery will also offer tastings of their apple blueberry cider, made with Finnriver blueberries and four varieties of crab apple. Crab apples are the only native species of apple available in the United States. Talk about local!
Music this week includes: Ethan J Perry & The Remedy Band at the PT Wednesday Farmers Market, Geoffrey Castle and Howly Slim at the PT Saturday Farmers Market, and Geoffrey Castle at the Chimacum Sunday Farmers Market. See you at the Market!
Millbrook Farmers Market Cups are Back; Meet the Artist
Many of you have fallen in love
with the hand-made PT Farmers Market cups by Millbrook Clayworks. Good news! After selling out of our first small batch, we will have new stock this Saturday at the PT Farmers Market as well as at the Chimacum Farmers Market on Sunday. Come by the Farmers Market booth to get your veggie cup with artwork by Market Director, Amanda Milholland.
But what is the story behind the cup? How does a lump of clay become a PT Farmers Market cup? Artist, Todd Stephens, photo documented the process for us. After weighing each piece of stone-wear clay, he wedges the clay to get out any air bubbles then forms it into a ball. Next, he throws and shapes each cup by hand. With intention and precision, he pushes and pulls the clay into form on his wheel. He sets completed cups aside to dry before trimming. Each cup goes through three firings; the first takes place once the cup is dry and trimmed. After the first firing, Todd dips each cup in glaze that he makes himself. He then fires the cups a second time. Lastly, he adds a sticker of a hand-drawn radish, carrot or peas as well as the PT Farmers Market logo to the cup and fires them a third time. Todd uses 100% green power to run his kiln and mixes his glaze in small batches from raw materials to reduce waist. Millbrook pottery is dishwasher and microwave safe with all lead-free glazes.
Originally from Bainbridge Island, Todd studied Liberal Arts at Western Washington University and at the University of Amsterdam. Todd has been a potter for the past 15 years and the owner and artist of Millbrook Clayworks for the last eight years. An avid outdoor adventurer, Todd was inspired to work with clay after seeing beautiful hand-made tiles in Mexico while working there as a mountain bike and wind surfing instructor. Todd started as an apprentice in Bellingham, WA where he swept the floors in exchange for pottery lessons. He also shared a studio as a member in a pottery coop near Bellingham for seven years.
Today, Todd makes cups, bowls and other usable art for the home in a studio shared with his wife, Sarah. His pieces reflect his love for nature with mountain scenes, salmon swimming, bikes and trees. Sarah, hand-carves some of the stamps Todd uses in his work. You can also see the influence of Todd’s children, Chloe and Ayla. Designs like dinosaurs on skateboards and dogs on bikes show Todd's playful side inspired by fatherhood. Some designs Todd hand-draws on his pieces. Other designs he draws by hand and prints onto stickers, which burn into the clay during firing.
In addition to helping Todd with some of his designs, Sarah is an artist in her own right. She studied at The Evergreen State College and further developed her artistic talents at the Pratt Fine Arts Center in Seattle. You can find Sarah’s jewelry alongside clay pieces at the Millbrook studio and at the PT Saturday Farmers Market. Like Todd, Sarah’s pieces are inspired by nature with birds, trees and other animals.
You can find Millbrook pottery at the PT Farmers Market. On Kids’ Days, you can also find Millbrook Clayworks at the Chimacum Farmers Market. Todd will be offering kids the opportunity to paint their own bowl at the next Kids’ Day on August 7. Additionally, art by Todd is available at the Millbrook Studio in Port Hadlock, the Chimacum Corner Farmstand, and the Nordland General Store. Learn more about Millbrook in this recent
From Our Vendors
Midori Farm is running a sale on all six varieties of sauerkraut and Kimchi as they make the switch from one production season to the next. Regularly priced at $10, you can buy two jars for $18, three for $25, and five for $45 this week at the PT Farmers Markets. This amazing deal is available while supplies lasts. Come stock up!
Red Dog Farm is bringing GREEN BEANS! This first batch of the season is super sweet and tender. Karyn and Devin will also have English cukes, baby summer squash, cherry tomatoes, raspberries, and a whole lot more.
One Straw Ranch has beef back in stock. They also have a new selection of beautiful wool yarn ranging from cream colors to nearly black.
This Saturday River Run Farm will have raspberries. In addition to berries, our selection of vegetables include: fresh fingerling new potatoes, an assortment of head lettuces, bunches of tender broccolini, and sweet red and golden beets.
Sol Food will have raw raspberry creme torte and a raw wild-berry cobbler featuring local raspberries, wild-harvested June berries and salal berries. Alexa will also serve up other "berry delicious," raw, non-dairy, gluten-free, organic delights!
SpringRain Farm & Orchard will have berries galore this week at the PT Farmers Markets, including: strawberries, sylvanberries, blueberries, and currants. They will also have plums, sungold cherry tomatoes, eggplant, basil, eggs, fresh chicken, jam, and pesto.
Please visit our website for more information about our markets. Thank you!