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A Busy Friday Afternoon at the Bayfield Farmer’s Market 

1 Aug


Whether it is stopping on the side of the road to pick up some sweet corn on the honour system or frequenting markets, eating local is both good for you and our economy!

Whether it is stopping on the side of the road to pick up some sweet corn on the honour system or frequenting markets, eating local is both good for you and our economy!

By Diva Calista Powell

We are so fortunate in our area to have beautiful lakes and land that make for the perfect farming climate. We are also very lucky that we have so many places in Huron County for small businesses to sell their harvest. As a past “Londonite” I made sure to visit the many markets the city has to offer, but had never been to one in HC. It just so happened that for one of my other jobs I was asked to sell tickets for a local initiative in Bayfield during the market hours on Clangregor Square. Boy, was I ever impressed. I thought that the sleepy beach town of Bayfield would have a small turnout, but each booth was so busy, I hardly had a chance to chat with the vendors. I was also impressed because there wasn’t just the regular old fruit and veggie stands lining the square. I enjoyed a hot coffee from Shop Bike Coffee Roasters and a vanilla cinnamon roll from the Red Cat Farms bakery cart. I also had the chance to say hello to Pat McDougall and Shelagh Sully of CovenTree Gardens and peruse through Irene Morris’ unique garden art. Overall, Bayfield Market has a great selection of vendors and is worth the visit this summer.

Check out the Bayfield Farmer’s market every Friday from 3-7PM on Clangregor Square.To find other markets in the area download Huron Perth’s Farm to Table, “Buy Local! Buy Fresh!” guide here:http://huronperthfarmtotable.ca/consumers/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/4th-BLBF-Map-FINAL.pdf

Firmly Rooted supplies many happy customers with fresh seasonal veggies.

Firmly Rooted supplies many happy customers with fresh seasonal veggies.

Pat McDougall and Shelagh Sully pose for a shot with their fresh cut flowers. Coventree Gardens is known as the home of Bayfield lilies.

Pat McDougall and Shelagh Sully pose for a shot with their fresh cut flowers. Coventree Gardens is known as the home of Bayfield lilies.

Irene Morris smiles alongside her work that was originally inspired by art she saw in Ottawa.

Irene Morris smiles alongside her work that was originally inspired by art she saw in Ottawa.

 

Samuel’s Thursday Night Sushi is Back!

31 Jul

Samuel's Summer Sushi Backby Diva Calista Powell
Transitioning from living in the city for 5 years to moving back to Huron County is something I welcomed with open arms back in March. I knew that I would not miss the hustle and bustle of traffic, the blaring sirens and unfamiliar faces. But my gosh, I did not consider how much I would miss sushi. Luckily, a good friend and foodie extraordinaire, Jill Donnelly, notified me that her work, Samuel’s Hotel in Saltford, serves these beautiful rice rolls every Thursday night. Conveniently located across the street from my Dad’s house, I met up with Jill and our mutual friend Brittany and was pleasantly surprised to see the wide variety of sushi rolls on the menu. I would have to say that the best part about the menu was the great promotion they have on Thursday night called “A Dinner for One”. For $21, you can order your choice of 1 starter, 1 roll, and 1 dessert. This was a great choice for all of us as Jill is an experienced sushi connoisseur, and Brittany had never tried any before so we ordered to share.

The summer fresh rolls.

The summer fresh rolls.

After mowing down our appetizers of always-a-great-choice edamame and some super gingery summer rolls (fresh rolls), I felt nearly full already but had to continue when the main course arrived. Jill, feeling daring, ordered the Fusion Fire roll which was a spicy blend of Lake Huron white bass, cucumber, and peppers topped with a chili mayo, and after having a couple pieces I thought my mouth was going to literally light on fire. They don’t joke when they say extra spicy, but then again I’m kind of a sissy when it comes to hot foods. Britt chose the safe option and went with the Teriyaki Chicken and although she was a little timid to take the first bite, she ate every last piece and tried some of mine and Jill’s. I decided to go with the Fusion Salmon roll which was cold smoked salmon, cream cheese, chives, cucumber and avocado topped with a pile of fish roe. Britt asked what the “little orange balls” were, and with our encouragement she tried, and liked arguably as much as Jill and I did.
Teriyaki chicken rolls. I have such great friends for letting me sneak a few morsels  off of their plates. “Guys, it’s for a Travel Diva’s article, come onnnn”.

Teriyaki chicken rolls. I have such great friends for letting me sneak a few morsels
off of their plates. “Guys, it’s for a Travel Diva’s article, come onnnn”.

If we weren’t wowed enough already, when the chocolate brownie and emperor’s napolean desserts came out we were definitely impressed. The presentation was so beautiful I almost felt bad destroying it, but it was worth every bite. I have never seen a dessert as elaborate as the emperor’s napolean. As expected, the sweet crispy wontons, green tea whipped cream, summer berries and raspberry chocolate liquor sauce were to die for. I have to say that one of my favourite things to do is introduce friends to excellent cuisine and I don’t think we could have picked a better place than Samuel’s Hotel to dine for girls night.

To view the rest of Samuel’s Special Thursday night Sushi menu: http://samuelshotel.ca/component/content/article/11-dining/31-summer-sushi

Samuel’s Hotel Inc. are located at
34031 Saltford Rd.,  Goderich, ON N7A 4C6

 

A deliciously rich brownie

A deliciously rich brownie

All hail the emperor’s napoleon.

All hail the emperor’s napoleon.

ArtSee Cafe Eats in Bayfield, ON

30 Jul
The mushroom spinach and ham crepe in a white wine cheese sauce. Delish!



The mushroom spinach and ham crepe in a white wine cheese sauce. Delish!

By Diva Calista Powell

ArtsSee Cafe’s website states they are, “Serving delicious, innovative, fresh and healthy food. Our service is friendly, casual and attentive. Our environment is relaxed, current, youthful and welcoming”, and I have to 100% agree with them. I have always wanted to go to this French-style bistro, so on a rainy day I drove up to Bayfield to have lunch here with my Grandma, Polly. It usually takes me about .5 of a second to decide what I am going to order but every single item on this menu was so intriguing. We ended up deciding on splitting a mushroom, spinach and ham crepe and the Mediterranean Panini made up of Metzger’s smoked turkey breast, artichoke hearts, crumbled feta, and sundried tomato mayonnaise grilled on a focaccia. It was nearly impossible to decide which meal I liked better. You can never go wrong with a healthy sandwich made from local ingredients, but then again the crepe had a white wine and cheese sauce that I wish I could eat every day.

The Mediterranean focaccia as recommended by our server. Definitely a good choice.

The Mediterranean focaccia as recommended by our server. Definitely a good choice.

The portions were great for a light lunch and the ambience of ArtSee Cafe was relaxed and welcoming. At one point a lady wearing her pyjamas sat down to an espresso to frantically scribble something on to a napkin that I could not make out . I later overheard as she was speaking to a friend who entered the cafe that she was visiting from London for a poetry workshop and just had a surge of inspiration. It made me smile knowing that someone from a neighbouring city would feel at home here and find ArtSee Cafe as wonderful as I did.

To view ArtSee Cafe’s Schedule and Menu go to their website at http://www.artseecafe.ca

They are located at 19 Main Street, Bayfield, Ontario

The super friendly serving staff Cassie Groot, Shannen Murray & Maddy McDonald.

The super friendly serving staff Cassie Groot, Shannen Murray & Maddy McDonald.

The culinary wizards who made my amazing meal! Big thanks to Guy Spence, Anita Spence and Stacia McLean.

The culinary wizards who made my amazing meal! Big thanks to Guy Spence, Anita Spence and Stacia McLean.

 

A Shopping Trip to the Exeter Market

24 Jun Exeter's Farmer's Market

by Diva Christine Harris

Exeter's Farmer's MarketIt was a beautiful day outside for a Farmer’s Market and I was lucky enough to meet all the vendors and talk to them.  Here are the people and places I met on June 19th during my shopping trip to the market.

Truly-Local-(2)Truly Local

Matt McIntire from Truly Local has a food truck set up and today his specials are Pulled Pork Sandwiches and Meatball Subs. Matt believes in using only local meat, he can tell you exactly where he has gotten his meat from that he’s serving that day and when it was butchered.

Eagleson-FarmsEagleson Farms

Matt Eagleson primarily sells beef, lamb and pork from his farm near Grand Bend.  Most of their food is organic, or pretty close to it.  They also have peanut products from the Simcoe area.

The Healthy Hemp GuyThe Healthy Hemp Guy

Brent Holden sells Canadian made hemp products such as clothes, soaps, and seeds.  He also has a variety of balms, bamboo towels and coconut oil.

Bayfield-Berry-FarmBayfield Berry Farm

This vendor has a wide variety of items, ranging from produce to baked goods and canned goods.  Today the strawberries are in season as well as asparagus and rhubarb.  The pies and tarts look great!

Sandra's-Country-CraftsSandra’s Country Crafts

Sandra has a variety of crafts available for sale.  She enjoys making canvas art, handmade jewelry, and she also knits and crochets items like dishcloths.

WallyWally’s

Wally makes his very own jams, pickles and relish, all ready to take home at reasonable prices.

Good-Luck-GardensGood Luck Gardens

Joanne and Dave Foster are from Kirkton and have been in business for 24 years now.  Today tomatoes, asparagus and potatoes are for sale. They also have some beautiful planters and if you’re someone who enjoys growing their own food, they have heirloom tomato plants.  Look for Joanne on the cover of Rural Voice.

Pillitteri-Estates-WineryPillitteri Estates Winery

All the way from Niagara on the Lake this family owned and operated business joins our farmer’s market with five types of wine.  They have been in business since 1993 and have won over 700 awards.

Susan's-CraftsSusan’s Crafts

Susan has many unique crafts in her booth today.  She makes birdfeeders and what she calls dress-ups for the kids.  She also makes handmade quilts, pillows and purses from used clothing.

The-Home-FarmThe Home Farm

Kirk and Carol pick their produce the morning they come out to the market, so you know what you’re getting is fresh.  Today Carol is selling peppers, cucumbers, cilantro, parsley, lettuce and garlic. She also makes baked goods from spelt, which you can also buy as berries to make your own goodies at home. Today she sells a variety of cookies and pies.

Sheldon-BerriesSheldon Berries

Ray Sheldon from Lakeside Ontario is displaying some beautiful strawberries today.  He tells me that they have raspberries in their greenhouses and blueberries will be ready for July.  Ray is also selling honey, apple butter and raspberry jam.

Cedarvilla-Angus-FarmsCedarVilla Angus Farms

This 7th generation family farm from the Zurich area takes great pride in their products.  Today they were selling beef roasts, pepperettes and beef jerky.  You can contact them to place larger orders as well.

Apple Blossom Walk on the Blyth Greenway Trail

14 Jun The winter was long and hard on fruit trees - and the blossoms weren't quite at their peak.
The winter was long and hard on fruit trees - and the blossoms weren't quite at their peak.

The winter was long and hard on fruit trees – and the blossoms weren’t quite at their peak.

by Karen Stewart

On Saturday, May 24th, 2014 a small group of local residents met in the Village of Blyth to enjoy a walk along the Greenway Trail and hear about the no less than fifteen brands of apples growing there.  The story that these apples grew from cores pitched from the windows of the passing trains captured my interest.

Due to the long, long winter, the blossoms were not quite at their peak, but we did listen to tales of the Blyth Greenway by local historian Brock Vodden while enjoying a walk among the blossoms, trees and shrubs!

This blossom walk was lead by Hauke Reisenbichler, a Master Craftsmen in Gardens and Orchards from Germany.  He shared information on the fruit trees as well as some uses for wild plants growing along the Maitland River located adjacent to the trail.

Participants agreed there was interest in gathering again this fall to walk the trail and identify the apples, many of which are heritage brands.  A local source reported that one particular tree makes great applesauce — I look forward to trying some this fall.

But, the Trilliums were in their prime.

But, the Trilliums were in their prime.

Great things come from ‘Out of the Blue’

7 May

 

Sue showing off their wide variety of imported seafood and talks about the lobster tails from Cuba that customers have coined as “The Ohmygods”

Sue showing off their wide variety of imported seafood and talks about the lobster tails from Cuba that customers have coined as “The Ohmygods”

by Diva Calista Powell
It was fishing on the river where Sue Larson and Don Voisin met, and today this married couple continue to share their passion at their fresh fish and seafood market ‘Out of the Blue’ in Bayfield, Ontario. Six years ago, Sue and her husband noticed that Huron County was lacking a supplier of freshly caught fish and wanted to open up shop and bring in their own fare from the Great Lakes. Since then, they have cast their net wider to import the best lobster tails from Cuba and even catfish from North Carolina that they cure themselves in their at-home smokery. It has been claimed by the residents of our area that they sell the best quality and variety of fish on the West Coast, which is supported by the many restaurants in Huron County that feature their local fish on their menu. This claim is also validated by returning international tourists that stock up before they head home to South Africa, China and Jamaica to name a few places. While chatting with Sue, she said that their claim to fame is definitely their wide variety of smoked fish, so I decided to take the plunge and get the smoked catfish. Even though I can be a picky eater and was hesitant to try catfish, I was blown away by the moist light flavour and have even been back to get some more since writing this article. It was at that time where I also decided to turn up the heat in the kitchen and try out local Lake Huron rainbow trout. Sue gave me a fail-safe recipe that she swore by, and even laughed a little when I jotted down her straightforward directions on my notepad. As promised, this recipe turned out fabulously and the trout was perfectly flaky and had a nice delicate flavoring. If anyone else would like to test their culinary talents and support local, I too highly recommend buying from Out of the Blue Fish and Seafood Market.

Out of the Blue’s fresh fish display case with varieties of bass, halibut, perch and pickerel among others.

Out of the Blue’s fresh fish display case with varieties of bass, halibut, perch and pickerel among others.


Sue Larson’s Simple Baked Rainbow Trout:

Ingredients:
2 cuts of fresh rainbow trout
Soya Sauce
Sea Salt
Pepper
4-6 thick slices of tomato
2 lemon wedges

Directions:
1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees Celsius and line a baking tray with aluminum foil.
2) Place the trout on top of the foil and drizzle on soya sauce and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Top with thick slices of tomato.
3) Bake uncovered for 12-15 minutes and serve with a lemon wedge.

My delicious rainbow trout creation!


My delicious rainbow trout creation!


For more information about Out of the Blue visit their Facebook page at:https://www.facebook.com/OutOfTheBlueFishAndSefoodMarket

Out of the Blue
Hwy 21, Bayfield
(519) 565-4240

 

“You can give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; you teach a man to come over to Out of the Blue and he is happy for a lifetime”.                              – Sue Larson

Situated right off of the Bayfield square makes this a great location for County residents and summer tourists to stop in and acquire a taste for their product.

Situated right off of the Bayfield square makes this a great location for County residents and summer tourists to stop in and acquire a taste for their product.


Sue wraps up my rainbow trout and catfish in newspaper and calls it “the old English way”.

Sue wraps up my rainbow trout and catfish in newspaper and calls it “the old English way”.

photo 3

Ah, sweetest taste of Spring – Fresh Maple Syrup!

7 Apr

by Diva Karen
Saturday was the perfect day to take a trip ’round Huron County to pick up some fresh, organic maple syrup.  I visited Robinson’s Maple Products in St. Augustine and learned all about modern maple syrup production.  With 20,000 trees in five separate bushes, Bill and Susanne have built a business that provides fresh organic products not only to much of southwestern Ontario, but also to a large market in Japan and emerging markets in China and the Ukraine.

Read the full story at HERE at www.tasteofhuron.ca.

This equipment, called a PIG (it looks like one, eh?) churns thickened syrup for smooth creamy maple butter.

This equipment, called a PIG (it looks like one, eh?) churns thickened syrup for smooth creamy maple butter.

Saps contains 2% sugar,  After processing through this Reverse Osmosis System it's at 16%.

Saps contains 2% sugar, After processing through this Reverse Osmosis System it’s at 16%.

Holding tank on the second floor for the 16% concentrate … will flow down to the evaporator

Holding tank on the second floor for the 16% concentrate … will flow down to the evaporator

Evaporator on the left side uses steam coils to boil down the sap to 66.5 degrees Brix*

Evaporator on the left side uses steam coils to boil down the sap to 66.5 degrees Brix*

This filtering system removes the impurities

This filtering system removes the impurities

Dinner on Saturday night included Tangy Maple Meatballs – a recipe that Suzanne shared with us.

Tangy Maple Meatballs (Recipe below)

Tangy Maple Meatballs (Recipe below)

Robinson Maple Products
84548 St. Augustine Line
Auburn, ON  N0M 1E0
Phone:  519-527-7857
www.robinsonmaple.com

SUZANNE’S TANGY MAPLE MEATBALLS

Meatballs
1/2 lb ground beef
1/2 lb ground pork
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 egg
2 tbsp dried parsley flakes
1 tsp Worchestershire Sauce
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper

Preheat oven to 350.  Combined above ingredients and form into 1 1/2″ balls.  Please in 8″ square pan, bake for 20 minutes.

Sauce
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp dry mustard
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp vinegar
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1/4 c water

Combine cornstarch, mustard and salt in small saucepan.  Gradually stir in vinegar, maple syrup and water.  Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly.  Drain fat from the meatballs, pour sauce over meatballs.  Bake 20 minutes.

 

A DIFFERENT WAY OF COLLECTION
While the Robinson’s operation is automated – sap is suctioned via vacuum on those blue plastic lines strung through the bush the local Amish were tapping trees along the roadside and rather than the traditional pails (shown in last year’s story HERE), they’re using Wine Skins as shown in the photo below.

Amish in the area are using WineSkins for sap collection.

Amish in the area are using WineSkins for sap collection.

 

*Degrees Brix (symbol °Bx) is the sugar content of an aqueous solution.  One degree Brix is 1 gram of sucrose in 100 grams of solution  and represents the strength of the solution as percentage by weight (% w/w). If the solution contains dissolved solids other than pure sucrose, then the °Bx only approximates the dissolved solid content.

Olympic Fever at the Albion

26 Feb
The Albion is a popular spot for snowmobilers.

The Albion is a popular spot for snowmobilers.

by Diva Trista Russell
February has been a great month for getting cozy on the couch and watching some television…especially when the Winter Olympics were on! While I was in Bayfield staying at the Little Inn during the Family Day long weekend, I headed down the street to watch the Canada vs. Finland hockey game in the pub at The Albion Hotel.

Not surprisingly, there were lots of hockey fans cheering on the Canadian team, and servers were even dressed in red and white jerseys. It was a sunny winter’s day, so of course there were lots of snowmobilers stopped there too. Every Tuesday, they have great specials and prizes for snowmobilers, which includes $2 tacos or sliders and chili dogs for $5.95!

The Albion has huge murals painted on the walls along with some displays of sports memorabilia. The interior looked different from the last time I was last there, but I love how the decor provides a relaxed and cozy vibe.

Olympic fever has hit the Albion!

Olympic fever has hit the Albion!

For those that enjoy fish and chips, when I went they had a $12 two-piece fish and chips special. I enjoyed the “Nachos Supreme” and a beverage, which definitely hit the spot!

The Albion has a great atmosphere for watching sports, especially the Olympics. You can see how proud everyone is of the Canadian team when the pub erupts with cheers. Go Canada Go!

The Albion Hotel
1 Main Street, Bayfield
Phone: 519-565-2641 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting
Email: albion@tcc.on.ca
The Albion is on Facebook!

My hockey watching menu: “Nachos Supreme” with ground beef

My hockey watching menu: “Nachos Supreme” with ground beef

Watching the Olympic hockey game at the Albion

Watching the Olympic hockey game at the Albion

Murals and sports memorabilia adorn the walls

Murals and sports memorabilia adorn the walls

Audrey’s Feast

30 Sep

IMG_4008by Diva Trista Russell

I have to admit that when I heard about this event, I had no idea who Audrey was. But after attending Audrey’s Feast, it appears that Audrey was wonderful inspiration to our community, and especially the Farmers’ Market in my hometown of Exeter. Unfortunately, she recently passed away, but it was evident from the kind words spoken throughout the night that her inspiration still lives on.

Audrey’s Feast was a long-table style dinner that was held in a tent right beside Main Street in Exeter. Audrey’s Feast was inspired by Audrey McFalls, who saw similar events celebrating local food held in neighbouring regions and wanted to bring it to Exeter. The proceeds from the Feast went to the Huron County Food Bank Distribution Centre and the Exeter Farmers’ Market. The servers throughout the night were all vendors from the Farmers’ Market. Dinner was catered by Devin Tabor of Bon Vivant Personal Chef Service, and live music by Devon Martene and Jon Gill.

The delicious dinner started off with an amuse-bouche (bite size appetizer) of smoked Lake Huron fish, mixed greens with roasted beets, and roasted sweet potato soup. For the main course, there was roast beef with gravy and horseradish cream sauce, and honey dijon roast chicken. This was accompanied with a medley of veggies, smashed potato with roasted garlic, and fresh rolls with seasoned butter. The dessert was an an apple crumble with fresh raspberries, chantilly cream and mint. Yum!

IMG_4009The dinner featured items from Barrking Hill FarmBayfield Berry FarmCedar Villa Angus FarmsFirmly Rooted FarmGood Luck GardensMcClymont Century OrchardSheldon Berries, The Home Farm, and Cudmore Farm.

Guest speaker for the evening was Andrew Fleet, who is Director of Growing Chefs! Ontario, a non-profit organization based in London that unites chefs, growers, educators and community members to help get kids excited about how to grow and prepare healthy food. One of the programs Growing Chefs! Ontario offers is called “Fresh Food Frenzy” which takes school kids to a local farmers’ market and then prepare a meal using market ingredients.

He also spoke about how we need to change how the way we look at food, as often we look at eating as an inconvenience in our busy day. He said that Europeans, especially Italians, have it right: they look at food and eating as a priority, and fit the other things in life around food.

I hope this event happens again next year!

IMG_4021

Each diner got to take home a package from Egg Farmers Ontario, including a handy microwave egg cooker.

IMG_4016

I was one of the lucky winners who got to take home a beautiful centrepiece of fresh cut flowers from Cudmore Farms!

IMG_4015

Some wonderful ladies from London that I met at Audrey’s Feast. Hope you enjoyed the evening!

IMG_4001

A sample of the items you can purchase at the Exeter Farmers’ Market.

European ambiance at the ArtSee Café

27 Sep

by Diva Susan Pye

One recent Friday evening I was standing under the porch of the new public library in Bayfied (a great community resource and meeting place!), watching a very loud  thunderstorm blowing down Main Street and wondering why I had ventured out at all.  I had my answer as soon as I dashed across the road and entered the ArtSee Café to be greeted by the wonderful aroma of various tasty dinners being prepared by Chef (and owner) Guy Spence and the other kitchen wizards at work.

ArtSee is a little restaurant/café tucked into a European, or perhaps New Orleans style, alley and courtyard midway down Main Street on the south side of the street. Small trees, shrubs, grasses and flowers around the alley and little courtyard add to the Euro ambiance.

Friday night is French Bistro night, as is Saturday on long weekends, with the last Friday night French Bistro occurring October 11 (please see the ArtSee Café web site for details on schedule, reservations, and menus; the Café continues to be open on weekends through to November 10 with various special menus planned).  The friendly wait staff (including Guy’s daughter Anita who moonlights as a teacher in London during the week) helped make our dinner decisions, which was tough because everything sounded delicious and looked amazing as the various dishes passed our table to other diners.  We were fortunate enough to benefit from the usual Friday night bistro dinner as well as Lobster Fest option. While I dined on lobster salad and a exceptionally tasty pasta  (little pockets of black truffles with pieces of lobster in sauce), my husband enjoyed the French onion soup (traditional and delicious, not too  gooey as so often can be the case) and a  tender beef filet with béarnaise sauce (who doesn’t love béarnaise sauce?).  While we probably shouldn’t have, we shared a home made cheesecake for dessert, which was exactly what a cheesecake should be (again, not too gooey).

When we rolled out of the Café into the warm autumn evening on the charming Main Street of Bayfield, we were very, very happy. A wonderful way to start the weekend! Thank you Guy and kitchen wizards, and of course Anita and wait staff!

ArtSee Café & Bistro
19 Main Street
Bayfield Ontario Canada

enjoy@artseecafe.ca
519.565.2200

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