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.
By all accounts, New Hampshire is in the midst of a bee-boom: bee classes and clubs are overflowing with new members. And a conference center in Concord that has caught the bug, but had to overcome a unique challenge to keep bees.
In the mid-1800s the United States was home to more than fifteen thousand varieties of apple - two thousand in New England alone. That diversity was pretty much wiped out by the growth of industrial agriculture and today, only a few varieties remain…at least in the supermarket. John Bunker , a man known as the apple whisperer, is on a quest to find, save and preserve long lost types of apples.
According to the USDA, Americans are producing and eating more locally-raised food every year. But the market for local meat has trailed behind the market for local produce. Until recently, reasoning has been that there’s a shortage of local slaughterhouses. But as three slaughterhouses open their doors in NH this year, industry-wide studies show that more slaughterhouses may not be the answer, after all.
The recently opened Monadnock Food Co-op in Keene has just won a national startup of the year award from the Food Co-op Initiative. The Co-op opened for business April 3 with a Grand opening weekend in June.
For the last three months shoppers like Allison Aldrich have been picking up farmer produced foods at the Monadnock Food Co-op.
Lacto-fermentation has a branding problem. Every person I talked to about this story heard the term, and with visions of rotting milk in their heads, said “hmm… sounds disgusting.”
But if it takes you a little time to get past that initial discomfort, that’s ok with Stephanie Zydenbos-Heino, owner of what’s possibly the only lacto-fermentation business in the state, Micro Mama’s. Her recipes sometimes take six months to finish their work – so she’s used to waiting.
“Also known as Japanese horseradish or mooli, daikon looks like a bigger, uglier, knobbier parsnip and, if its flavor can be likened to anything, it is reminiscent of a finer, less fiery radish.”
- From the cookbookCooking Vegetables.
If you have a CSA subscription, chances are you have found a daikon radish in your share recently. Daikon radishes are a staple in Asian cuisine, the name daikon is actually Japanese for "great root." They're a prolific vegetable and can often grow up to 20" in length with a diameter of 4"! Recently, reporter Josh Rogers was the recipient of a rather large daikon radish, and asked: what do you do with this?
NASCAR may have drawn the biggest crowds in central NH last weekend, but it was far from the only event to attract hardcore fans. The social hall at Laconia's Temple B'nai Israel was packed on Sunday, with people and with food.
“I have matzo ball soup in chicken broth,” says Lynn Goodnough. “We have sweet and sour cabbage soup, and we have borscht, a cold beet soup served with sour cream.”
“We've got pastrami over here, tongue over there, and corned beef over there,” her son, Jordan, adds. “The brisket actually sold out in online pre-orders already.”
Oyster farming in the Great Bay Estuary is in the midst of a little bit of a boom. In recent years, the number of oyster farms has leapt from 1 to 8, with more on the way. These gains are boosting the hopes that using these filter feeders as an “outside-the-pipes” way to clean up the waters of the Great Bay could become a reality.
At farmer's markets, co-ops, and small local farms, heirloom tomatoes are becoming more common. They're older tomato breeds – some very old – that haven't been hybridized or genetically modified, and with seeds that can actually be planted to grow new tomatoes. A pair of young New Hampshire farmers wants to raise awareness that heirloom doesn't just mean tomatoes, and they've started what they say is the state's only all-heritage farm, River Round Heirloom, to prove it.
The past few years, moonshine has been making its way back on the shelf, thanks in no small part to the discovery channel’s popular reality show, "Moonshiners."
While "White Lightning" may have its roots in Appalachia, there's at least one illegal operation brewing in the deep shade of New Hampshire's forest. As part of Foodstuffs, NHPR's new series celebrating food, Todd Bookman reports.
With almost 60 farmers markets across the state, demand for local food is growing. But local farmers still struggle to make a profit growing local food. In fact, about three quarters of all farms in New Hampshire gross less than $10,000 from sales each year.
This is the first installment in our summer business series investigating how a changing market place is affecting New Hampshire farmers.
Although New Hampshire has slipped to the number-two spot nationally in beer sales, it's been a good year for the state's small brewers. New Hampshire Brewers Guild Kevin Bloom discussed these developments with Weekend Edition host Amanda Loder.