The Farmer’s Market Season kicked off last week, and I made sure I found my way downtown for the Saturday Morning Market first and foremost. The evening markets across Green Bay offer a variety of vendors and new experiences. However, I have a soft place in my heart for the Saturday Morning Market after years of attendance. It’s my priority each week once the weather turns. I have many vendors that I make a point to visit, but I know that I’ve missed out on good stuff in years past. Turns out, even after nearly four years, I still haven’t discovered all of the gems.
Near the Walnut Street Entrance sits the Behnke Farms van, and it’s a van I have both stopped at and walked past a thousand times. This is my fourth year attending the market, and for that reason it sometimes feels hard to find something new to highlight for you, dear readers. Behnke Farm recently caught my attention again over the winter when they started carrying and advertising their picahna at the Winter Market on Military.
The number of heirloom variety growers at the Saturday Morning Farmer’s Market has grown in the last few years, but one of those I have always kept my eye on is Adam’s Heirlooms, who frequently had vegetable varieties on the table that I never saw before that day. One weekend, I happened to stop by and see two words that excite an avid cook: Berkshire Pork.
Berkshire hogs originally hail from England, and in many cooking circles, they are considered some of the best available to a modern cook. They may not be Iberico pigs, but this variety of hog is talked about nearly as often as their Spanish, acorn eating relatives. I had to stop. I had to buy, and I learned a lot from the folks at the stand.
While most of my energy was focused on the animal husbandry portion of their offerings, the varieties of peppers and other vegetables on the other end of their stand remained peculiar and unusual compared to the other vendors at the market that morning. I will be back to investigate those further during the final farmer’s market as hot sauce preparations begin several weeks late in the Eating Normal House.
Of note, you can access their website to pre-order what interests you most and pick it up at the Market this weekend. They have home delivery in the Manitowoc area if that is more your speed. I can only wish for a home delivery in Green Bay in the fast approaching off season.
Morning comes, and the grocery order of the day before is safely stored in my refrigerator. The sheer amount of produce and meat that came from local sources is somewhat hard to believe even after a delicious spring and summer farmer’s market season with other vendors in Green Bay. Produce with Purpose Farm has a strong variety available for the time of year, and access to humanely raised and butchered meats propelled them up the list of my favorite places to shop in the last month. It only made sense that I would eventually set up a farm box pick up, and here we are using it as a challenge opportunity.
Hi folks, long time no write. It’s been a hell of a few months. My health is still not quite where I want to be, but I’m very excited about a challenge I issued for myself starting Thursday, April 15th with a big farm box from Produce with Purpose over at Revolution Market in Green Bay. I’ve debated for a long time if I should start picking up with them weekly after several pleasant in person visits and their new delivery service through Eat Street, and I woke up on a Sunday morning with a fresh idea: let’s cook and eat local only for one whole week starting with them.
And trust me, I know I’ve been screaming on the rooftops about how much I love this place. It might even be getting annoying. I really believe in what they’re doing over there in trying to make these kinds of goods accessible throughout the year. Home delivery, farm boxes, daily vendor hours. It’s dedication, and I’m dedicated to it. It’s a mission I believe in, and to try to live it a little bit more myself, here’s what I’m doing.
My husband and I try to stick to a $100.00 grocery budget a week, which I will surpass slightly buying local meat for our meals. I’m okay with a little extra money out the door to eat local. We’ve got a few weeks in our area before the farmer’s markets start opening and more and more vendors start selling. If this little challenge works out, we will continue to spend nearly every cent of our grocery budget on our local growers and producers.
Here are my rules:
If this sounds like something you want to try yourself, Produce with Purpose is open for box building until 7 am on Tuesday each week to give them time to gather up what you order. Green Bay and Fox Valley locals have got some time to figure out what they want if you want to do this with me.
Visit their Barn2Door ordering website here if you’re interested.
Below is a list of what I personally ordered for the coming week, and if I come out of a recipe particularly proud, I’ll post it for you to try!
Sunday, March 7th, my husband and I went out on a whim to a little building on Holmgren Way that I've watched from a distance for the better part of a year now. Crippled by closures this time last year, Revolution Market got off to a slow start while they prepared to welcome vendors into their space. Those restrictions are gone. Vendors are in their stalls, and Sundays are for Produce with Purpose as one of the only vendors on site during the weekend.
We didn't know what to expect when we arrived. Google Maps told us the whole building was closed, but Facebook told us better. Signs outside let us know that someone was indeed on site and selling. That someone was Rick from Produce with Purpose, holding down the fort at his indoor farmer's market with product availability across the board.
The Exchange Coffee, Mercantile, and Eatery - Winter Menu
The Exchange started their Winter menu 12/1/20. Those lovely pumpkin flavors have passed into memory, but that doesn’t mean their offerings are any less good. Check out the new menu and order for pickup or delivery!
Luna Cafe and Roastery, Bellevue Location - New Menu
Luna also started a new menu at the beginning of the month with some tasty looking breakfast favorites.
Copper State Brewing Co - Brew Decks Available
2021 Brew Decks from Venture Wisconsin are now available at Copper State, but many other town breweries will have these available this week as well. Check out your favorites for an interesting 2021 keepsake. We’re picking one up soon too!
Lox, Stock, ‘n Bagel - Weekly Specials
Been a bit since we talked about one of our local breakfast favs, and in the spirits of a bunch of coffee and breakfast favs also on the list this week, we wanted to remind you that Lox, Stock, ‘n Bagel have a different specials menu every week from their bakery that you can check out on their Facebook page. Different Scones and Different Muffins every single day!
Hinterland Brewery - Igloos are Up
Hinterland has set up outdoor seating with those igloo things we’ve all seen on the internet lately. Cozy and warm and socially distant.
Main Street Bourbon Room - Wednesday half off Apps during Happy Hour 4-6 PM
What it says in the header: Half off shared plates during happy hour on Wednesdays with MSBR so long as you dine at the bar. If you’re brave enough to eat inside, it’s a great deal!
Mr. Brews Taphouse: Bellevue - Slider Flights available, Also Igloos
Slider flights started this week, and Mr. Brews Taphouse also set up igloos last week if you’d like to find another place to eat outside and among people you aren’t afraid to sit in a tiny plastic, heated container with.
Uncle Mike’s Bake Shoppe and Monzu Bakery - Envelope Sales
Both Uncle Mike’s and Monzu, two of our fav bakeries in town, have started their holiday envelopes which MAY contain sales and giveaways on their items, but you can’t open them til after Christmas. What a fun promo!
An idea born in Normal, Illinois, Eating Normal hopes to chronicle the eating Experiences of a Red bird. Pledge monthly to our patreon!