Foodstuffs

A food blog from NHPR news, digital, & programming staff, exploring food & food culture around the state & the New England region. On-air features air Thursdays on All Things Considered and Saturdays during Weekend Edition.

mantasmagorical / Morguefile

Among the tables featuring fresh fruits and vegetables at New Hampshire farmers markets this summer, you’re also likely to see small craft breweries and wineries selling their creations.

Tasting one of these alcoholic beverages, however, will have to wait until after you purchase it and take it home.

Jane Lang is president of the New Hampshire Farmers Markets’ Association. She says it’s important to taste samples of food and beverages before you buy—it helps the consumer choose—and this is especially important for wine and beer.

Luca Nebuloni via Flickr/CC - http://ow.ly/LZ7gR

A lot of what you see at presidential primary events is pretty standard: a national political figure, local officials, members of the press, and, of course, voters.

On this night at the Snowshoe Club in Concord, there was something else: a long table with sixteen pies.

The guest of honor, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, says he mostly adheres to a paleo diet, which doesn’t include baked goods. But in the spirit of the evening, he dug into a slice of blueberry pie – and the potential 2016 candidate had no regrets over indulging.

K Hardy via Flickr/CC - http://ow.ly/L97SE

There's a spring tradition that's been building over the last few years: Peeps diorama contests. Participants use those marshmallow birds and bunnies to put together all kinds of wacky and creative displays.

Steve Richardson via Flickr CC

Looking for something  Grade A to do this weekend? After an especially long winter, New Hampshire residents can finally taste the sweet stuff that's become an annual rite of spring: local maple syrup produced in a roadside shack.

Sean Hurley

Local Foods Plymouth has been connecting area residents with local farmers and bakers via their online farmer's market since 2006. Members can order meat, vegetables, bread, hot sauce, even hand-made soaps online and collect their goods at a local pick-up spot.  Last year, they made it even easier with a delivery service they call "Farm to Desk" as NHPR's Sean Hurley reports.

  It’s the first week of March, about the time we usually see the kickoff to the maple sugaring season. But maple syrup producers are still waiting anxiously for the sap to start flowing.

Howard Pearl joined All Things Considered. He’s a maple producer in Loudon and a director of the New Hampshire Maple Producers Association which represents 400 maple farms in the state.

Karima Nabulsi owns Karima's Kitchen, a specialty food and catering company that operates out of Eastman's Corner Farmstand in Kensington, N.H.

Nabulsi moved to the United States from Lebanon when she was 14. Today, she uses produce from Seacoast-area farms to make traditional Lebanese food.

Listen to the audio postcard below to hear her recipe for spinach fatayer: a Lebanese finger-food.

Matt Saunders via Flickr/CC - http://ow.ly/IzBvo

Over the next few weeks Foodstuffs is going to look at the range of foods we have here in the Granite State - and it may be a wider range of foods than many of us think.

Among winter comfort foods, Susan Laughlin of New Hampshire Magazine has one choice for the ultimate: poutine. She compiled a guide to poutine in New Hampshire and she joined All Things Considered to talk about it.

Sean Hurley, NHPR

Each year the New Hampshire Maple Producers Association honors the state’s best maple producer with the Lawrence A. Carlisle Memorial Trophy.

This year’s winner is the Fadden family, which has been making syrup for some 200 years, and has been producing on its current location in North Woodstock since the 1930’s.

Jim Fadden joined All Things Considered to talk about the award and the sweet old world of maple.

Michael Rosenstein via Flickr/CC http://ow.ly/HN2Su

If seaweed isn't part of your share of New Hampshire food, it may soon be. At least that's the goal of the “exploration of seaweed” event taking place at Stages at One Washington in Dover.

Ted Murphy via Flickr/CC - http://ow.ly/Hoz3v

In cold weather we turn to comfort food, and there are few foods more comforting than mac and cheese.

This winter favorite is becoming increasingly versatile, as is evident from the many entries in the New Hampshire’s Own Macaroni and Cheese Bake Off, which takes place Saturday, January 17th, in Concord.

Ryan Lessard / NHPR

The A&E Custom Coffee Roastery in Amherst is hosting a latte art throwdown. We decided to learn more about how latte art is made and judged.

Sam Delay really knows his coffee.

“This espresso that we’re using is our bonbon espresso blend.”

Delay is a trainer and wholesale account manager at A&E. And, as a barista, he puts a lot of pride in his art, describing the exact weight of the coffee grounds, the time it takes to pour, the volume of a double-shot and so on.

“Mugs that are very good for pouring art have a very curved bottom.”

Florian Schroiff via flickr Creative Commons / flic.kr/p/4LGNke

UPDATE: Thanks to everyone who submitted answers to our questionnaire. We'll leave it up in case some of you haven't had a chance to submit. Here's a link to the answers we've received so far: Questionnaire Results.

Overview of Results: These don't include the results of our panel.

Ketchup: Heinz or Hunts?

This is a time of year when food banks and aid groups are looking for ways to encourage people to donate food and money to help the hungry.

The Portsmouth Public Library is offering its patrons a deal: donate food to the Seacoast Family Food Pantry and they’ll forgive some overdue fines.

Rhett Sutphin via Flickr CC

Your dad made it look easy...maybe. But carving a turkey is a bit more complicated than you might think. It's a big bird, after all, and not every knife is created equal. (Nor is every bird, thanks to the "spatchcock" craze!)

But never fear, humble home-chef, there's somewhere to turn if you're confounded by the prospect of carving: YouTube. 

Listed below are some of the most informative and easy-to-follow turkey carving how-to videos on the site.

Pro Tip: Watch them in advance of the family arriving and you'll look like a turkey carving ninja come dinner time.

Jocelyn & Cathy via Flickr/CC - http://ow.ly/EeQ62

Yankee Magazine recently released the winners of its 2014 Editors Choice Food Awards. One of the New Hampshire honorees caught our attention: Moochie’s Macarons of Nashua.

Amy Quinton, NHPR

For the past several years, two men calling themselves The Fish Nerds have been on a quest to catch and eat all the species of New Hampshire freshwater fish. Their quest is now complete.

Clay Groves and Dave Kellam talked with All Things Considered about what they learned while trying to “Catch-m-All and Eat-m-All.”

How did this all get started?

Stef Noble via Flickr/CC http://ow.ly/CdH92

It’s apple season, and one of the most enjoyable ways to partake is the apple cider doughnut.

Amy Traverso is senior lifestyle editor at Yankee Magazine and author of The Apple Lover’s Cookbook.

She tells says even though New Hampshire has plenty of great cider doughnuts for sale, everyone should try making a batch at home at least once.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

A Colebrook woman is trying to make it easier for people to buy locally grown foods while giving farmers an economic boost. Her idea is a variation on the classic roadside farm stand, and it is a model that could be used around the state.

But it’s going to require a change in state law.

Cascadian Farm via Flickr/CC http://ow.ly/APWQE

Yes, the Market Basket dispute is over, but not all is rosy in the New Hampshire food world. Take for example, the legal challenge in Walpole between two ice cream shops.

Michael Samuels

Basil has been one of the big draws all summer at Dimond Hill Farm in Concord. 

“We give a sprig away for every customer who buys something,” says Yianna Coliandris, who works at the farmstand.

“Everyone was enjoying that, and it was absolutely thriving. It was beautiful, beautiful basil, and it tasted and smelled absolutely wonderful.”

But now customers will have to find basil elsewhere.

“This was the basil,” says Jane Presby, surveying a tenth of an acre of empty soil.

Sarah VanHorn, Manager of NH Community Seafood / N.H. Sea Grant

This is the second year for a New Hampshire program that brings the farm share model to fish.

It’s called New Hampshire Community Seafood, and it was the subject of a recent column by David Brooks, who writes the weekly Granite Geek science column for the Nashua Telegraph and Granite Geek.org. He joined us on All Things Considered to talk about the program.

Boscawen Community Kitchen Survey Underway

Aug 1, 2014
Emily Corwin, NHPR News

A New Hampshire college student's proposal for a community kitchen in Boscawen is in line to undergo a USDA-funded feasibility study.

A community kitchen would provide farmers and entrepreneurs with access to processing, packaging and storing facilities. For smaller enterprises, the access to such a facility would mean a chance for expanded production and profits.

Ale Viyie via Flickr Creative Commons

For years, Market Basket has called itself the store where you get more for your dollar.

And those longtime customers who are currently boycotting the chain over the firing of longtime CEO Arthur T. Demoulas say they’re spending more on groceries as they’re patronizing other stores.

Those worried about their grocery budgets might pick up a few tips from Erik August Johnson.

Michael Samuels

 

The blueberries are ripe and ready to pick at Apple Hill Farm in Concord.

Erin Urquhart / Putting Up With Erin

About 40 foodies are expected to show up at the Seacoast’s first community Food Swap this Sunday at Frank Jones Mansion in Portsmouth. 

Organizer Erin Urquhart says it works like this:

You get together and one person says 'ok I have two cans of blueberry jam, I have two pounds of carrots, I’m willing to swap for that,' and someone behind you says 'I have a sheet of brownies that I made, I want that instead.'

Brian Smestad, courtesy of Blue Tree LLC

A Mexican lime shortage had some NH bar owners worried. 

Margaritas, mojitos, gin and tonics... when you think of summer drinks, there's probably a lime in the picture. But up until a few weeks ago, this summer looked pretty grim – at least lime-wise.

“We were paying $50 a case to begin with,” says Jim Derosiers, “and then they jumped up to $150 a case and $175 a case.”

Desrosiers is the bar manager at Poco's Bow Street Cantina in Portsmouth. Every week, Poco's goes through about 15 cases of 250 limes each.

nseika via Flickr/CC - http://ow.ly/z98qI

The world of crowdfunding is awash in potato salad, thanks to a spud enthusiast in Ohio called Zack Danger Brown. Promising only that, upon raising ten dollars, he was going to make potato salad – “I haven't decided what kind yet” – Brown raised nearly $50,000 in two weeks on Kickstarter. (The total was well over $70,000 before Kickstarter cancelled several donations it said couldn’t be verified.)

Jeff Couturier via Flickr/CC - http://ow.ly/z1nyR

Winter feels far away right now, but farmers looking to grow winter crops - and there are a growing number of them -  are starting to think about what they’ll put in their greenhouses.

Michael Samuels

 

A Bedford coffee roaster offers a different kind of buzz.

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