Soup @ Fulton Street Farmers Market runs March 21 (Saturday) 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Cost – $8 per person, $5 kids 10 and under, $5 friends of FSFM, free with Friends of FSFM 2015 renewal or new membership.
Winter market hours 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays only through April 25 at the Fulton Street Farmers Market
Fulton Street Farmers Market opens for its 92nd season the first Saturday in May, at 8 a.m. Regular hours 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday
At 10 a.m. Saturday, down the stalls of the Fulton Street Farmers Market, crisp apples, firm potatoes, farm eggs, non-homogenized milk, sun-hued winter squash, and growlers of People’s Cider Company catches the eyes. Bright micro-greens and exotic mushrooms picked seconds before arriving (yes!) woo market shoppers toting re-useable bags. Roast-chunks of ham, lamb and beef, nitrate-free bacon, hand-crafted sausage nestle in snowy mounds, with Mother Nature providing the refrigeration.
Nearby, bread, hand-kneaded and baked slow; goat’s milk cheese coagulated and dressed with fennel ; and lardy tarts with farm eggs, winter vegetables and unpasteurized cheeses are snapped up.
Determined and unbelievably upbeat, a dozen Fulton Street market vendors continue outside in the snowy tundra while six vendors move into the warm building for the Saturday winter market from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Most markets in Michigan are two or three-season operations with tarps and tables dismantled around Halloween, certainly before Thanksgiving. The hearty souls – who grow, catch, pluck, brew, and bake the homegrown food and drink that we devour – show up each and every Saturday – through Michigan’s wintry stew.
Let’s have a community party to share the bounty, one bowl at a time, decided Chef Matt Overdevest, FSFM board member. “Let’s give market shoppers a chance to linger amongst friends and farmers,” says Overdevest, a Culinary School of America-trained chef.
Scheduled for Saturday March 21, Soup @ Fulton Street Farmers Market is a community fest celebrating winter’s locally grown goodness while giving market customers a chance to linger amongst friends and farmers.
The Fulton Street winter market gathers the community, equally a place of necessity and destination, says Theresa Hogerheide, FSFM board president and blogger at Michigan Local Food Beet. “The winter market brings about this wonderful camaraderie,” says Hogerheide, “and surprise that we can eat locally year-round, even if we have to tunnel through the snow to get here.”
“Soup @ Fulton Street Farmers Market will be a great opportunity to taste, touch and talk about local eating year-round,” says Overdevest, joining a crowd of eager customers clamoring to buy Case Visser’s winter vegetables — locally grown beets, carrots, celery root, potatoes, rutabagas, and turnips, as well as kale, spinach and honey.
“I love to coax the flavor out of homegrown root vegetables – I mean I can sweet talk it right down to a delicious soup base,” Overdevest says. “The first thing that most people do when they make soup is grab a can or box of stock and start there. That’s just gives you a chemical kind of taste, that is terrible.
“When I make soup, everything is based in water,” he continues. “I use roasted vegetable puree that I am puree-ing very smoothly and turning that into my stock. When I roast the vegetables, I’m kind of caramelizing the sugars within the vegetables and turning that into something gorgeous.”
With locally grown vegetables, Overdevest might leave the skins on which offers added nutrients and sometimes flecks beautifully in the soup, looking a bit like peppercorn flecks.
Kim Sanwald, of Cloverdale’s Brickyard Farms LLC which vends year-round at the city’s oldest farmers market, suggest visiting the Fulton Street winter market to create stewy soups to chase away the Artic air.
“I think soup is a journey really,” says Sanwald, author of “Basics with a Twist: Life and Food at Brickyard Farms.” “A good soup recipe lives within all of us – it’s just waiting to come out.”
Matt Overdevest’s Winter Vegetable Soup
2 white or yellow onions, peeled and diced
4 garlic cloves, peeled
1 celery root (not stalk celery), peeled and diced
½ winter squash (neck of a butternut or ½ of kumbocha), peeled and diced
1 large apple, cored and quartered
2 turnips, peeled and diced
4 carrots, peeled and sliced into ½-inch coins
2 parsnips, peeled and sliced into ½-inch coins
½ winter squash, (other ½ from above), peeled and diced
2 tablespoons fresh thyme (1 tablespoon dried), leaves off the stem
2 fresh spinach, handfuls rough chopped
1 bunch flat leaf parsley, chopped
2 tablespoons cider or white wine vinegar
SPICE MIXTURE (see recipe below)
PREPARATION: To prepare the soup base In a 8-quart pot (or larger,) add enough oil to coat the bottom and place it on a medium high heat. When the oil ribbons (gets hot and looks like ribbons are running through the oil,) add the onions, stirring occasionally. When the onions are translucent and have a little color, remove half of them for later; add garlic celery root, half of the winter squash, apple and enough water to cover by an inch. Simmer covered until everything is soft. Puree the mixture with a stick blender in the pot, or carefully in a blender. Fill the blender half-way and cover the lid with a towel for safety; start on lowest setting and work up to higher speeds.
Return the soup base from above to medium high heat. Add the reserved onions, turnip, carrot, parsnip, remaining half of the squash and thyme; adjust the heat to maintain a simmer. Cook vegetables until tender but not a soft texture- check after about 15 minutes. Adjust the consistency with a little additional water if needed. When the texture suits you, adjust the salt level and remove from the heat. Stir in the spinach, parsley and vinegar. Serve with some of the spice mixture to enhance.
1 teaspoon caraway seed, whole
1 teaspoon cumin seed, whole
1 teaspoon poppy seed
1 tablespoon sesame seed
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon red chili flakes, optional
PREPARATION: Place a sauté pan on medium heat and dry toast the seeds till fragrant. Turn off the heat and add the oil and chili flakes to combine. Spoon over or stir into soup.