<< Back to main

Reflections on "growin' like a weed," First Pop-Up, Markets and other Farm Happenings

Posted 5/14/2015 7:31pm by Leslie Cooperband or Wes Jarrell.

new header

Farm News

The litmus test for farmers this time of year is the degree to which they understand the expression “growin’ like a weed.”  City folks invoke this expression when seeing other people’s kids; how fast they’ve grown since the last time they saw them.  Farmers’ understanding of weeds is more profound and humbling.  Weeds, by definition, are plants that thrive in places where we don’t want them to grow.  They have finely honed evolutionary strategies to emerge quickly when environmental conditions are optimal.  Warmth and rain trigger their slumbering seeds to jolt into action, germinate and rapidly colonize the bare soil around them.  Somehow, their genetic knowledge outpaces that of seeds planted intentionally. 

It’s not just about pace either. The upshot: utter frustration in trying to find the beet and onion seedlings in a sea of tiny grasses and broad-leafed seedlings designed to look like vegetable seedlings.  The plasticity of weed genes to make them grow so rapidly and mimic the “good guys” beguiles me the most.  When my fingers accidentally pluck a vegetable seedling in place of a weed, I am humbled and exasperated.

Farmers’ Markets

This Saturday, we’re returning to both the Urbana Market at the Square and Chicago’s Green City Market. There is a chance of rain on Saturday, but don’t be deterred; just bring an umbrella and you can shop with impunity.  We’ve got a beautiful line up of cheeses for you:

Fresh chevre: plain, herbs de Provence, cracked pepper

Fresh Ricotta—it’s back and it lasts! We’ve modified our recipe a bit so that the shelf life on this fresh cheese is similar to our chevre (under refrigeration of course): two weeks. It’s a great cheese for cooking. It’s also simply delicious with honey and fresh fruit.

Goat milk feta—ask us for a sample of this tangy and sharp feta. It tastes great and it crumbles perfectly.

Black goat—young but tasty; slight yeastiness on the rind and a firm paste. If you like it more pungent, just leave it in your frig for another week

Little Bloom on the Prairie—our camembert style goat round; also a bit young but perfect served with roasted asparagus or kale

Angel Food—our little crottin-like rounds go really well with pickled ramps and a slice of baguette

Moonglo—still cutting into our late December batches of this complex raw milk cheese. Just try it (Huckleberry Blue is on hiatus until our early spring batches are ready by the end of June). 

We have some great flavors of gelato for you as well (* indicates flavors going to Green City Market as well as Urbana):

  • Vanilla
  • Chocolate
  • Fresh Mint*
  • Lemon Chevre*
  • Rhubarb Cream*
  • Salted Caramel Swirl*

We will also be bringing our salted goat-milk caramels to both markets and our “artisan” crackers to the Urbana market.  So, sing in the rain and make your way to the markets on Saturday. 

Farm Happenings

If you’re looking for a great way to spend your Friday evening, come out to the farm TOMORROW (FRIDAY, MAY 15TH) for the first “Third Friday Pop-Up” of the season.  From 5:30 to 7:30 pm, we’ll be serving up some southern-Midwestern fare and grooving to the mountain music of “The Young and the Fretless.”  NO RESERVATIONS REQUIRED. 

Tuesday, May 19th, we will be at the downtown Champaign Farmers’ Market (4-7 pm).  Next Wednesday, May 20th, our midweek farm “Open House” returns, 4-6 PM—lots of great farm and artisan food products for sale as well as gelato by the scoop.  Thursday, May 21st, from 7:00-8:30 pm, we’ll be hosting a workshop on healthy eating with an emphasis on local foods. The workshop will be led by Maria Ludeke, Founder and CEO “Creative Health” and Maureen Sullivan.  To get more information and to register, please email either Maria (maria.ludeke@gmail.com) or Maureen (msullivan9217@gmail.com). 

healthy habits workshops

Copyright 2014 Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery, LLC. 2014. All rights reserved. 4410 N. Lincoln Ave., Champaign, Illinois 61822 Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery, LLC is responsible for the content of this email. Please contact Leslie Cooperband or Wes Jarrell with any inquiries.