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Food & Drink

Navigating Philadelphia’s Headhouse Farmers Market

June 27, 2012 6:00 AM

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Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

headhouse farmers market credit food trust via facebook Navigating Philadelphias Headhouse Farmers Market

Photo Credit: Food Trust via Facebook

Headhouse Farmers Market
2nd St between Lombard and Pine Sts
Philadelphia, PA 19147
(215) 575-0444
www.foodtrustmarkets.org

Hours: Sat and Sun – 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The Food Trust’s goal is simple: make healthy food available to everyone. Sounds easy enough, right? But how do you actually do that?  You teach good nutrition, you help poor neighborhoods open grocery stores, you provide the training for schools to serve healthy foods and you offer fresh, healthy seasonal food in many neighborhoods in the form of farmers markets. Headhouse Farmers’ Market is just one of Food Trust’s 30-plus markets throughout Philly.

Located in the historic Headhouse Square in Society Hill, the market is open every Saturday and Sunday, May through December, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. With over 30 vendors, it offers the very best local produce, artisanal chocolates and cheese, fresh bakery items and a rainbow of fresh-cut flowers. Many of the city’s popular food trucks make a stop near the market; you can get your coffee from Joe Coffee Bar, now Philly Fair Trade Roasters, and a sausage sandwich from Renaissance Sausage while you browse the wares. If you need to, you can even purchase some local compost from Bennett Compost. Be prepared for crowds; Headhouse Market can get really packed.

Just a few of Headhouse Farmers’ Market’s vendors include:

Blooming Glen Farm (fruits, veggies, herbs and flowers)

Busy Bee Farm (honey, pesticide-free lavender and herbs)

Buzby Farm (produce)

Cranberry Creek Farm (farmstead goat cheeses, raw goat milk and goat meat)

Griggstown Quail Farm (fruit pies, pot pies and quail eggs)

Hillacres Pride (beef, pork, lamb and cheeses)

Otolith Sustainable Seafood

Ric’s Breads (artisan breads, muffins and cookies)

The vendors at Headhouse Market only accept cash, but an ATM can be found nearby. All of the Food Trust’s farmers markets’ vendors accept Senior Citizens and WIC mothers Farmers Market Nutrition Program vouchers and SNAP/Food Stamps (EBT Access cards for food stamp benefits). In a new initiative, for every $5 spent on fresh, local products with SNAP/Food Stamps, the user receives $2 in Philly Food Bucks. The Food Bucks can then be spent on more fruits and vegetables.

Related: Guide To Philadelphia’s Farmers Markets

fennel thinkstock Navigating Philadelphias Headhouse Farmers Market

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

One of the late spring/early summer’s great vegetables is fennel. Don’t let your childhood hatred of black licorice scare you away. This licorice-flavored and healthy (one cup has 20% of your recommended daily value of vitamin C) member of the parsley family is becoming a popular ingredient in all kinds of cooking.

Fennel has a bulbous base, celery-like stalks and feathery leaves. The entire plant is edible; the crisp bulb has the expected anise flavor and is slightly sweet and tasty when served raw in salads. If you cook it, whether by roasting, grilling, braising or sautéing, the bulb becomes mellow and soft.

Look for white bulbs that are firm and solid. The stalks should be crisp, with feathery, bright-green fronds. Pick up some fresh, crunchy fennel bulbs and garlic from Blooming Glen Farm, and enjoy this recipe from its website:

Fennel and White Bean Salad

1 1/2 C dry white beans
2 bay leaves
2 cloves garlic, peeled and left whole
1 tsp salt
2 small or 1 large bulb fennel, cut into thin strips
1 small red onion, or scallions, sliced
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 C red wine vinegar
1 T prepared mustard
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 C extra virgin olive oil
chopped leaves from 1 bunch of basil

Soak the beans for 4 hours, replace with fresh water and bring to a boil. Pour out the boiling water. Replace with fresh water and add bay leaves and garlic. Simmer until tender but not mushy, 40-50 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat, stir in salt. Drain beans and cool. Trim the stalks and rough outside layers of the fennel. Cut the stalks into quarters and remove the cores. Thinly slice the pieces and add to the beans. Add the onion.

Combine the lemon juice, vinegar, mustard and garlic powder and mix well. Whisk in the olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Toss the dressing with the salad and add the basil.

Related: Top Spots for Rum Selections in Philadelphia

Trish Deitemyer is a freelance writer living in Philly. She covers Food & Drink and has been writing since 1986. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.

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