17 Weeks Down and a Great Story

Over the past 17 weeks of the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market we’ve come to expect our regulars week-in and week-out; it’s part of what makes Lake Bluff a great community – the people! From all of us at the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market we say “thank you for your support.” Without it, our 20 years in Lake Bluff would never have been possible.

Perhaps no one epitomizes the spirit of Lake Bluff – and the Farmers’ Market – like the lively group known – perhaps unofficially – as the Dawn Pilots. Talk about a great story – this group has come out every Friday morning for 17 weeks straight, arriving at 7:00 a.m. on the nose each and every week. They have even used past markets to do everything from celebrate birthdays to renew wedding vows! Check back for more information on the Dawn Pilots and other Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market fans.

RegularsJoin us for the last Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market of 2013 on Friday, October 11th to meet this great group of passionate market-goers and hear more about their unique stories and great camaraderie while perusing Fall’s farm goodies and more!

Beers and Brats? Yes, please!

On Friday, September 6 – around 10:30 a.m. the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market will celebrate three great things:

Bratwurst * Beers * Local Businesses

That’s right! This week’s farmers’ market in Lake Bluff will feature a special tasting event provided by our friends at the Lake Bluff Brewery and the Daily Grind. The team from these two amazing local businesses will come together at the Village Green to highlight their products and how well they pair together – it’s no wonder they’re located on the same block!

Beer and bratwurst have long been a favorite pairing of BBQ’s across the country, and at this week’s Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market you can learn the intricacies of why these two are married in deliciousness!

Labor Day? Really?

Yep, really! Monday marks Labor Day and – sadly – the unofficial end of Summer. While it seems like Summer was just getting started ahead of this weekend, Fall is a fabulous time in Lake Bluff and a wonderful time to continue finding produce, products and more from your local farmers’ market.

With that in mind, the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market team welcomes you to make Friday’s market your first stop this weekend! Headed to Wisconsin for one more lake weekend? Pick up some cakes, cookies or corn to complement a great BBQ spread. Or if you’re sticking around Lake Bluff this Labor Day make your home shine with fresh flowers or help a weekend with family special with smoked whitefish dip.

We’ll be going strong for another few weeks and hope to continue to be graced by great weather by Mother Nature. See you on Friday in Lake Bluff!

Refrigerator Pickles

While we have a “Recipes” page on our site already, the following was so mouthwatering, we had to share it on the homepage. Submitted by our great friend Deb, these pickles are easy to do at home and features all produce from the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market. Join in the fun and try it out for yourself at home soon!

Refrigerator Pickles – August 2013

2-4 glass jars – 2 qt total capacity– repurposed/reusable

10 cloves or more, peeled garlic (no such thing as too much garlic)
2 C white vinegarIMG_0461
6 t kosher salt
Fresh dill heads, and sprigs – 6-8
1 t each celery, coriander, and mustard seed
1 t black peppercorns

Vegetable to pickle:
Any veg will do well, go for it
6 small cucumbers, qtrd
4 small hot peppers – color diversity is appealing
6 small carrots, peeled, and sliced lengthwise

Spears in general:
Green beans, green onions, zucchini

Red onion
Pieces of other spears

Brine process:
Medium saucepan
4 C boiling water
Add garlic for 5 minutes
Add vinegar, salt, 5 minutes, turn off heat

Dill, seeds, peppercorns
Add boiled garlic
Add tall veg, alternating with heat peppers
Stuff jars full. That means sliding in the tall pieces tightly, supplementing with chunks
Heat brine again, pour over veg, let cool, seal and frig.

After a couple days, can last for months.


Happy Farmers’ Market Week!

The week of August 4 – 10, 2013 has been declared National Farmers’ Market Week by the United States Department of Agriculture. It is humbling to know that our Farmers’ Markets – and the great farmers, businesses and other vendors that make them the iconic pieces of America they are today – have fans from the communities they occupy all the way to the federal government!

Check out the official proclamation from the Secretary of the Agriculture Department below and be sure to help us celebrate on Friday at the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market!

080813 FM WeekLove the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market (or any other market across the United States)? Then share your experience with us in our comment section or on Facebook or Twitter!


Market Goodies Make for Great Birthday Dinner!

As we mentioned on Facebook and Twitter, Friday was one of our Market Committee member’s birthdays. In true Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market team fashion, we made him a great meal on Sunday night (had to wait for the next generation of Market fans to have time) completed with goodies almost exclusively from the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market. The highlights:

A Whitefish Spread Appetizer
The night kicked off with a wonderful whitefish spread perfect for a chilly summer night. Not too heavy on other ingredients, this whitefish spread goes on crackers or bread easily and lets the fish speak for itself.


Tomatoes and Cucumbers
For the [first] side dish we simply cut up tomatoes and cucumbers and drizzled with olive oil and completed the dish with salt and fresh pepper. Again, we were excited to let the actual produce shine rather than dousing it with too much dressing or another ingredient.


Corn and Beans
For another side we boiled green beans and corn for additional “greens”. Salads don’t have to  include lettuce, we’ve learned!


The core of our main dish was steak filled with mushrooms. These baby portabellas have more flavor than many other varieties, and are easier to work with than some of the more delicate mushrooms. We love mushrooms of all shapes and sizes at our house, but for this dish these were perfect.

mushroomsThe Main Course
The only item of this meal that didn’t come from the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market was the steak. It did, however, come from our great friends and local meat purveyors at The Daily Grind. Rick set us up with this huge cut that could be split down the middle, stuffed, tied, grilled on indirect heat, sliced and served. This steak and mushroom combination was hearty enough to feed four adults!

steakmushroomsThe Complete Spread
When all of the preparation was complete, it was time for the celebration and a farm-to-table birthday extravaganza!

completemealFINALCome on up to the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market every Friday through October and make a great meal for that special someone – or someones – soon! Our great market vendors can help you with recipe ideas, menu suggestions and other insider tips on their products to make sure a meal large or small is perfectly prepared!

July’s Coming to a Close

Can you believe it? July’s almost over. Now before we go an get sentimental about summer ending and thinking ahead to back-to-school time and fall, there’s still plenty of time to enjoy Lake Bluff’s best season! Don’t miss Terry Moran performing at tomorrow’s Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market, along with one of summer’s favorite crops – corn!

See everyone on the Village Green on what looks to be another great Friday in Lake Bluff! In the meantime, in case you missed our great ad on Gazebo News, we’ve included it below!


Corn Roast Returns Friday, August 2nd!

On Friday, August 2nd, 2013 an activity that has turned in to a fan favorite returns to the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market. In celebration of the Lake Bluff Market’s 20th anniversary, and following rave reviews from market-goers enjoying the Corn Roast in the past, the event will be fresh and – perhaps best of all – provided free of charge.

Fresh corn has long been a staple of barbeques and farm stands across the Midwest. For the August 2nd Corn Roast corn is being provided by regular Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market vendors Didier Farms, Red Barn Farm and Twin Gardens. The Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market Corn Roast is made possible by the Village of Lake Bluff and MC2, the Village’s electrical provider, who will serve as the event’s co-sponsors.

Thanks to the great support of the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market’s regulars, and our dedicated vendor partners, our Corn Roast continues to grow and draw exciting crowds to the Village Green for professionally-roasted corn. Illinois is home to acres upon acres of cornfields and our state’s farmers produce some of the best corn in the Midwest, while feeding hundreds of thousands of people. With great corn readily available the Market team knew this event would draw the crowds out. We’re excited to keep the tradition alive in 2013!

Our annual party in the park will also feature live music from Terry Moran, helping create a festive atmosphere for all. We’re looking forward to seeing everyone back for some fresh and free samples on August 2.

Marshal Day is Almost Upon Us!

We can’t wait! On Thursday, July 4, 2013 at 10:00 a.m. Lake Bluff’s most popular and longest running traditions will step off in front of the Village’s Public Safety building. At the same time, another great Lake Bluff tradition will continue its 20th anniversary celebration. The Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market. The Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market was launched in 1993 to provide Lake Bluff residents access to farm fresh produce, flowers, baked goods, jams, and much, much more. The Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market, specifically, brings America’s traditions of farmers and small business owners to a historic community.

“We’re ready and raring to go for Thursday,” said Gridley Swanton, market manager for the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market.  “Parades celebrating our nation’s independence and farmers’ markets are two great representations of the American spirit of community and freedom – and two things the Village of Lake Bluff and its residents do extremely well.  Putting the two together is more an honor for our committee, but rather a celebration of Lake Bluff.”

More on the Lake Bluff Farmers’ Market serving as the Lake Bluff 4th of July Parade’s Marshal was included in the annual parade book, picture below:


%d bloggers like this: