Sunday, January 10, marked the first day of the 2016 season for the indoor Huntington Farmers Market on Lowndes Avenue in Huntington Station. Despite the bad weather, customers flooded the gymnasium with bags in hand, ready to buy farm fresh produce, soups, breads and other products.
A line had already formed at Orwasher’s, which makes fabulous artisanal breads from Manhattan, and the race was on to get the best produce before it ran out at the farm stand run by Finks Country Farm in Wading River. Since the growing season was extended due to the warm temperatures, there was an amazing selection of carrots, golden and purple beets, parsnips, Brussel sprouts, squash, potatoes and apples to name a few. Finks also featured a variety of lettuce, three of which were grown hydroponically by Jamesport farmer Carl Gabrielsen. I purchased two beautiful heads of kale and a dozen local brown eggs.
David Rubin, owner of Sconeheads Bakery in Rockville Center, was selling homemade soups, hummus and dips. Soups included split pea, lentil, chicken pot pie, vegetable beef and chili. All Rubin’s soups are made from homemade stock where he uses a minimum of 14 different vegetables that he gets straight from the farmer. He also makes delicious hummus, a cheddar bean dip and a black bean dip. I picked up two containers of split pea soup, which contains carrots that were roasted in tarragon; the black bean dip has black beans, lime, cilantro, cumin, garlic, salt, and jalapeno and habanero peppers. A touch of molasses finishes it off adding sweetness and balance.
A stop at Horman’s Best Pickles is always a must. I just had to have a large container of Red Flannel pickle chips, which don’t last long once my sons know they’re in the fridge. Next up was Copia’s Granola, which has been made the last year-and-a-half at Stony Brook University’s Business Incubator. Owner Grace Longinetti from Melville is happy to offer her certified gluten free, low sugar and salt, no preservatives, no GMOs or trans fats products. Copia’s is Pride of New York certified, and will be organically certified soon. The hazelnut fig granola and cranberry cashew granola were delicious, so I got a small bag of each.
My husband and I planned to make omelets once home, and decided to pair them with Ridgewood Pork’s amazing smoked maple bacon. We brought home a package of smoked peppered bacon too.
The final stop was at one of my favorites booths, Peck’s of Maine, where I chatted with Brian Jeran of Islip Terrace. He and his wife, Lisa, use recipes that have been passed down from four generations of a Maine family of jam makers. Five years the couple made five flavors; today they offer 28 varieties of jams, which are hand crafted in the Calverton Business Incubator on the East End. These jams are so good! At the end of the summer season I was disappointed that they had run out of their habanero jam, which pairs fantastically with some creamy goat cheese. Now, they had several jars. If you like less intense heat, I recommend their new flavor, cranberry jalapeno, or their mildest version, crazy Cajun. I tried a sample of jalapeno horseradish, which was also delicious and made with fresh horseradish from Schmitt’s Farm Stand on Sound Avenue in Riverhead. For those who prefer sweet, fruity jams, you have a choice of raspberry, strawberry, blueberry, pineapple, four berry and more. Coming soon will be BMW Bourbon bacon jam.
Some other regulars at the Huntington Winter Farmers Market included Gentle Brew Coffee, Sugar Rush Bake Shop, Imperial Empanadas, and Little Lexi’s Barkery, which specializes in natural, homemade dog biscuits.
The Huntington Farmers Market is open every Sunday until April 24, from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.