News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Farmer’s Market — cooking hard

Thank you to all who joined us during the Sisters Farmers Market! It was an incredible experience. Many local partnerships have blossomed to make the event possible and safe.

Next week we will have even more vendors so make sure to check out the weekly Farmers Market email that will pop in your inbox when you subscribe. Picking up your fresh goods is just the beginning. The kitchen holds the key to transforming those kohlrabies and napa cabbages into a centerpiece for sharing your day, holding space for tough times, or simply providing some energy to help you achieve your goals each day.

At times I feel like I am wrestling with the kitchen.

The lack of time, the pots, the pans, the mess, the vegetable scraps —really my cooking style is an expression so much of myself.

A friend walked into dinner one night to see three pans sizzling and filled to the brim, veggies scraps on the floor, and the music blaring.

They proclaimed my personal cooking signature style was “cooking-hard.” I laughed and then thought, I guess you are right.

I truly feel like I am “cooking hard” these days.

I am also really working on cooking hard, but a little less messy.

It has become another expression of myself; my meals, the flavors, the process.

As we grow through the market season I invite you to explore your cooking style!

In all reality, a silver lining of COVID-19 is how it has pushed me above and beyond what I thought I had time to do in the kitchen. I love dining out and enjoying our local community. However, the past few months allowed me to be more intentional with my shopping and time. Creativity and substitution in meals became essential. Sometimes this resulted in an incredible new dish, and at times, even my dog got a questionable meal. But through trial, error, and necessity I discovered ways to integrate those odd cans of coconut milk, sardines, pinto beans, and taco seasoning that linger in the back of the cupboard. Mind you, I did not put these all in a recipe together. Phew.

At the end of two months, I was so proud of myself, realizing that I was able to take simple, limited processed ingredients and make nearly all of my meals from scratch. This also happened during our busiest season on the farm where time seems to be evaporating. Not that this is my goal for life, but I would have never thought I would have had the skills to prepare every single meal for myself for two months with the temptations of Oliver Lemon’s sushi, Open Door beet salad, Saloon burgers, Boone Dog pizza and more.

I am sure we have all had our own COVID-19 food journeys these past few months. I urge you to embrace some newly developed habits and feelings of self-sufficiency. How can our local products, newly discovered resourcefulness and creativity come together to make this your most unforgettable year in the kitchen? Or perhaps just an opening to a new chapter.

Join us at the Farmers Market to explore community resiliency. I encourage you to brainstorm a goal or two. Something that seems attainable. Last year my goal was to preserve one item a week. Now, did this happen every week? I will never tell...

Perhaps your goal is centered around food preservation or maybe it is trying three new recipes a week? Maybe you want to get your kids involved, get through those weekly greens, or perhaps attending the market and trying a new veggie was your goal for the year — that is all a journey!

Examine your goals, priorities, and then set yourself up for success.

What do you need to help yourself along with this goal? Some suggestions could be a meal planner, a trip to the store to stock up on all those cooking staples, better cooking resources for using up those greens, a freezer for preservation, lessons for canning, quick recipes, more food storage containers and tips for healthy meal prep? Please share these needs on our Facebook page so we can all support one another.

For myself last year, a freezer was instrumental in my local food journey.

It allowed me to quickly freeze items from bountiful times for winter.

I was able to find a used one at Habitat Restore and from that moment my local food journey was transformed!

Join the Sisters Farmers Market on Facebook for our vendors, tips, and tricks:


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