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Farmers Market Coop of East Liberty Update

Posted 1/19/2012 8:14pm by Val Kennedy.

Update for Saturday January 21st

The market is open this Saturday, and all four of the farmer stands will be open and fully stocked- Kistaco Farm, J.L Kennedy Meat Stand, Zang's and Greenawalts.  Here is a summary of what will be available, along with a few notes  and suggestions from me: 

  • J. L. Kennedy Meat Stand- Val just let me know that they will have chicken backs for soup/ stock this Saturday. You can call to the farm on Friday to order, or take a chance on the availability on Saturday morning.  The number at the farm is 724-898-2316.
  • Kistaco Farm continues to have locally raised apples and apple cider.  I picked up a box of apples last week and they are still really good.  Fall apples in January- where else can you find that!
  • Last week I picked up a locally grown squash from Greenawalt's and made a delicous Jamaican sqush (they call it pumpkin) soup.  Please see the recipe at the bottom of this message.  It is very easy.
  • Speaking of soup, I also purchased a dried soup mix from Kistaco and made a delicous bean soup.  The mixes are very inexpensive, and yield a huge pot of soup. 

There will be a variety of fruits and vegetables available throughout the market from Zang's, Greenawalt and Kistaco stands.  Some are still locally grown items and some are "imported."  If you are interested in locally grown, please feel free to ask the farmers which items are local.

Potatoes (still locally grown at Greenawalt's)
Carrots and other root vegetables

Tomatoes (Zang's should have several nice varieties)
Peppers- sweet and hot
Green beans
Florida Citrus such as lemons, oranges and tangerines
Other fruit such as berries

Other vendors in the market will also be open.  So keep in mind that this includes many locally made offerings such as hummus from the Greek Gourmet, fresh baked items from Rebecca Plum, and fresh made donuts from Better-Made Donuts.  Also, pasta from Fontana Pasta, and bread from Wood Street Bakery.  Many Amish made prepared items are available at Greenawalts.  Kistaco sells dried soup mixes which are easy to make and great during the cold weather months.

Kew Park Coffee Bar

Last week we started to feature the beans that we imported "green" and roasted locally in Pittsburgh.  This week we will contiue to offer a darkmedium bean roasted by LaPrima, and a medium bean roasted by Commonplace Roasters.  People seemed to really like both roasts, so please stop by and let us know what you think.

Florida citrus is in its prime so we have beautiful oranges, nectarines and grapfruits for making fresh squeezed juice.

Since the weather has turned cold, we will have hot chocolate- back by popular demand!

PA Made Cheese

We received some new items.  We got an enormous wheel of Luddington Lace Swiss from God's Country in Potter County.  We will also have fresh curds from Arsenal Cheese, and fresh goat chesses from Riverview Dairy.  The aged "tome" goat cheese that we got from the Bylers was very popular.  I have some blue cheese coming in from Clover Creek tomorrow.

California Olive Oil Connection

We have six different extra virgin olive oils this week.  We also have 4 different organicly grown dried fruits from Van Dyke Organics in Gilroy, CA.  These are great items for the winter months.

Update on Direct from the Farm (A repeat from last week)

2012 will be the second full year of business for the Lagnese family who have brought the "direct from the farm" concept to the Farmers Market Coop of East Liberty.  The idea behind this is to bring great items to the market and do it by dealing directly with the farmers and producers.  This way the farmers get a larger share of the revenue since we are not dealing with middle men or distributors.  In many cases the itms we are bringing in are not available any where else in Pittsburgh.  We look forward to continuing and expanding the concept in 2012.

We recently took inventory for the business in preparation for our tax filing.  As I did that, I was reflecting on all of the relationships that we have formed over the last year.  It made me feel really good to know that we (and you the customers) are supporting so many small scale, family operations.  I have gotten to know these folks through email and phone correspondance, and in some cases visiting the farms.  So I just want to take a moment to recognize all the farmers and producers that we have worked with in 2011.  Each of them puts a great deal of hard work and care into growing and making their products.

Kew Park Estate Coffee

Located in Westmoreland, Jamaica.  This was our first relationship.  Kew Park is owned and operated by Peter Williams and Gina Green.  We have developed a great business relationship and friendship with Peter and Gina since meeting them during a vacation to Jamaica in 2009.  Peter has vistited the market 3 times so far, and we hope to get him back in 2012.

Learn more at:

Olive Oil- California Olive Oil Connection

Corto Olive Farm

Owned and operated by the Cortopassi family. The farm is located in Stockton, which is in California’s “Central Valley.”

Learn more at:

Figueroa Farm

The farm is located in Santa Ynez, and the oil is milled on the farm.  It is owned and operated by Shawn and Antoinette Addison, a prominent family in the California olive oil industry.

Learn more at:

Hillcrest Ranch

Located on top of a mountain in Sunol (a hair raising journey that I experienced in April).  The property is owned and operated by Kathleen Elliott- a third generation female farmer.

Learn more at:

Olinda RIdge Organic Farm

Located in Butte County in northern California.  Also now owned by Shawn and Antoinette Addison.

Learn more at:

Olio Nuevo

Located in Paso Robles in the heart of wine country. The operation is owned and operated by Art Kishiyama.  I visited the farm in April and was so impressed by the meticulous growing and processing practices used by Art.

Learn more at:

Stonehouse Olive Oil

The olives are grown on Silver Ridge Farm in Oroville California.  Trish Baldwin is the owner.

Learn more at:

 Dried Organic Fruit

 Van Dyke Organics

Located in Gilroy, California.  Owned and operated by Peter Van Dyke and his family.

 Learn more:

 PA Made Cheese

Arsenal Cheese- Allegheny County

Located right in the east end of Pittsburgh in Lawrenceville.  Owned and operated by Jonathan Gaugler.

Learn more:

Clover Creek Cheese Cellar- Blair County

Clover Creek is owned and operated by David and Terry Rice and their children.

Learn more:

God's Country Creamery- Potter County

God's Country Creamery is owned and operated by Mark and Melanie Bachman and their three children. 

Learn more:

Hidden Hills Dairy- Bedford County

Hidden Hills Dairy is owned and operated by Lori Sollenberger and husband Rex Knepp.  

Learn more:

Riverview Dairy- Clarion County

Riverview Dairy is owned and operated by Sam and Susie Byler and their 7 children.   Sam and Susie used to come to the market in person, but now work with us to sell their cheese.  We have visited their farm twice and are so impressed with the care and love that go into both raising the goats and making the cheese.


Jamaican Cream of Pumpkin (Squash) Soup

2 Tbsp. butter

3 Tbsp. flour

2 cups milk

1 onion chopped

2 cups of boiled pureed squash

1 Tbsp. sugar

Salt and Pepper to taste

1 Tsp. sweet curry (optional)

Make the pureed squash by lightly simmering peeled squash pieces in water.  I put the pieces in a saute pan and covered them with water.  I cooked them until soft which only takes about 5 minutes. I drained them and reserved the liquid which I added to the soup later.  I pureed the cooked pieces in a food processor.

In a pot, melt butter and lightly brown onions

Add curry, flour, salt, pepper ansd sugar

Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring constantly to make sure the flour does not burn

Add milk slowly, stirring constantly until the milk is well incorporated

When the milk mixture starts to reach a simmer, add the pureed squash, and the reserved liquid that you cooked the squash in.

Continue stirring to incorporate all ingredients together

Simmer for 5 minutes, then its ready to serve

Check for seasoning, add salt and pepper as needed.  You can also add some hot pepper flakes if you like.

Of course like all soups, it will be better the next day.


Thanks again for your support!



Please visit the market's website for information on the market and all the vendors.  You can sign up for a weekly email update.


The Farmers' Market Cooperative of East Liberty is located at 344 North Sheridan Ave., adjacent to the Home Depot parking lot.  The market operates year round- and is open from 5 AM until 12 noon every Saturday of the year.