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Savoring the Seasons

Savoring the Seasons: Signs of spring!

By MARY MCCLINTOCK

More signs of spring are showing up, in my yard and in nearby farm fields. I checked with Michael Docter of Winter Moon Farm in Hadley and he expects to have his SUPERB spring-dug parsnips in local stores by the time this article is published. Look for them at Green Fields Market on Main Street in Greenfield.

I never thought I’d be so excited about root vegetables, but Michael’s spring-dug parsnips almost don’t qualify as root vegetables. They are so sweet I always feel like I should serve them for dessert. There are many ways to enjoy parsnips, but my favorite is to peel them, cut them into “coins,” and then saute them in butter ... simple and yummy!

It’s a good thing there isn’t a webcam on me while I’m writing this article, because there would have been a big pause as I sat staring out the window, thinking about those buttery parsnip coins and how delicious they are with fried eggs and in chicken soup and in ...

Then, you would have seen me laugh out loud as I realized I was daydreaming about parsnips. I am indeed ready for spring!

I just found an intriguing parsnip and egg recipe in “From Asparagus to Zucchini” (see below).

Thinking about parsnips with eggs and chicken made me think of Diemand Farm’s farm store. I have just one of their roasting chickens left in my freezer, so it’s time for a visit to the farm store to stock up on eggs, chicken, turkey, soups, and other frozen foods. Their annual Easter Egg Hunt is coming soon, a fun event for everyone. Take your family and friends, and make sure to bring a cooler to stock up in the farm store.

Another sure sign of spring is seeing Greenfield Farmers Market’s opening day on my calendar. Soon!

Diemand Farm’s annual Easter Egg Hunt, Saturday, April 12, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., Diemand Farm, 126 Mormon Hollow Road, Wendell. Egg coloring, crafts and an egg hunt for children to enjoy. Baby animals including rabbits, goats, lambs and emus will be there to pet. Visit the farm store to sign up for a chance to win a Diemand Farm gift certificate. For information and directions, visit www.thediemandfarm.com or call 978-544-3806 or email diemandfarmstore@yahoo.com.

Greenfield Farmers Market is celebrating its 40th season! Saturdays, April 26 until Nov. 22, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Court Square, Greenfield. Market vendors have been accepted and are preparing for opening day, which day will feature fresh greens, starter plants, perennial plants, prepared foods, cheese, value-added products, maple syrup, honey, artisans and more! The market accepts SNAP benefits, credit and debit cards. For information, visit:

www.greenfieldfarmersmarket.com

or contact Market Manager Devon Whitney-Deal at devonwd@gmail.com.

Amazing Mycelium Inoculation Workshop, Saturday, April 26, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Colrain. Detailed, hands-on instruction on how to inoculate, care for, and produce delicious, log-grown shiitake, oyster, and hericium (lion’s mane) mushrooms. Bring home a few inoculated red oak or sugar maple logs and watch the magic happen in your own backyard! Coffee, tea and snacks provided. Wear work clothes. Limited to 25 participants. $35 per person (two inoculated mushroom logs included). Call for reservations at 413-624-5188 or email pclagreze@gmail.com.

This week we’re eating ...

Parsnip Patties

By Brantmeier Family Farm (in “From Asparagus to Zucchini” by Madison Area Community Supported Agriculture Coalition, available at World Eye Bookshop)

4 medium parsnips

1 egg yolk

Salt and pepper

1 egg white, slightly beaten

1 C. soft whole wheat bread crumbs (mixed with cornmeal or wheat germ, if desired)

Butter and/or oil for frying

Chop parsnips: steam until tender. Mash thoroughly. Mix in egg yolk and salt and pepper to taste. Form into patties, dip into egg white, then roll in crumbs. Saute in oil and/or butter until golden brown. These can also be cooked in an ungreased skillet or in the oven. Makes 4 servings.

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