Local hidden gems: 5 interesting items from your farmers’ market

Written for MyCentralJersey.com on 5/17/17

Everyone loves their local farmers’ market — from fresh produce, to locally grown meat to quality dairy products, the grub you can find at a farmers’ market simply cannot compare to what’s on the shelves at the grocery store.

However, another upside to shopping at a local farmers’ market is that besides the typical goodies you would find like fruits and vegetables, you can also to shop for interesting, artisan items such as pickles, hot sauce, jams, specialty breads and more. Read on to find out what quirky items you can find at your farmers’ market this spring.

Boston Cream Pie doughnuts from Curiosity Doughnuts. (Photo: ~Courtesy of Curiosity Doughnuts)

Doughnuts with a spin at Stockton Farmers’ Market

The Stockton Farmers’ Market, held Fridays year-round from 12 to 8 p.m., Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 19 Bridge Street in Stockton, has quite the roll-out of vendors for their market, but at least one that is sure to make you feel both very guilty and very satisfied – Curiosity Doughnuts, which brings new doughnut varieties to their booth every single weekend.

However, you won’t just find doughnuts here – instead, you’ll also find mouthwatering products like their pretzel crusted fried chicken served with cherry pepper caramel dipping sauce and doughnut bread pudding, just to name a few.

Stockton Farmers’ Market:  Year-round Fridays from 12 to 8 p.m., Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 19 Bridge St. in Stockton

Florence’s ravioli stems from Florence’s original recipe that she made starting in 1941. (Photo: ~Courtesy of Florence Ravioli)

Pastas from an 80-year-old recipe at the Scotch Plains Farmers’ Market

The Scotch Plains Farmers’ Market, conducted every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. from May 12 through Nov. 18 at 430 Municipal Avenue in Scotch Plains, has a wide array of vendors with storied pasts from throughout the area. However, one with a past that can’t be beat is Florence Ravioli, in which Florence, an Italian immigrant, sells her homemade ravioli, cavatelli, fettuccine, spaghetti and tortellini to hungry locals.

Florence’s ravioli stems from Florence’s original recipe that she made starting in 1941 for her sister, Vincenza Agnellino’s, restaurant, The Reservoir Restaurant, now located in South Orange. However, you no longer have to go all the way to South Orange to get it – you can simply head to the Scotch Plains Farmers’ Market.

Scotch Plains Farmers’ Market: Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. from May 12 through Nov. 18 at 430 Municipal Ave. in Scotch Plains

Capcaicin Chiles products can be found at the Highland Park Farmers’ Market. (Photo: ~Courtesy of Capcaicin Chiles)

Homemade hot sauce at the Highland Park Farmers’ Market

The Highland Park Farmers’ Market, held Fridays from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. from June 2 to Dec. 18 at 218 Raritan Avenue in Highland Park, has one vendor that certainly likes it hot – Capsaicin Chiles, run by David Bell of Highland Park, is known for lovingly growing every pepper that goes into his hot sauce and ground chile powder.

At the market, you’ll find two of Bell’s products that he has created from his homegrown peppers – Smoky Disturbance, a sauce made with chiles and pomegranate molasses that is so hot it is recommended to only use a drop at a time and his Magma Powder, made from ground peppers that have been lightly smoked and dehydrated.

Highland Park Farmers’ Market: Fridays from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. from June 2 to Dec. 18 at 218 Raritan Ave. in Highland Park

WoodsEdge Farm sells USDA aged beef and yak sausage among many other items. (Photo: ~Courtesy of WoodsEdge Farm)

Everything llama and alpaca at the Hunterdon Land Trust Farmer’s Market

The Hunterdon Land Trust Farmers’ Market, held every Sunday from May 21 to through Nov. 19 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Dvoor Farm at 111 Mine Street in Raritan Township, has grown into a huge farmers’ market that regularly attracts 1,000 visitors. One good reason for that may be because of WoodsEdge Farm’s booth at the market, which is a three-generation farm that has one of the largest herds of award-winning suri llamas in the world.

Here, you’ll find llama and alpaca fleeces, rovings, yarns, socks, gloves, scarves, mittens, hats, shawls, rugs as well as USDA yak and aged beef and yak sausage, all of which are free-range and free from additives, growth hormones, steroids and antibiotics.

Hunterdon Land Trust Farmers’ Market: Sundays from May 21 to through Nov. 19 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Dvoor Farm at 111 Mine St. in Raritan Township

Jams by Kim, run by Kim Osterhoudt of Hillsborough, creates all-natural jams, jellies and preserves. (Courtesy of Susan Bloom)

Jams both classic and offbeat at Duke Farms’ Farm to Table Market

Duke Farms’ Farm to Table Market, held 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursdays starting May 11 until Oct. 26 in front of the Farm Barn Orientation Center at Duke Farms located at 1112 Dukes Parkway West, Hillsborough is home to many specialty food makers among its 20 vendors, but perhaps the most famous is Jams by Kim.

Jams by Kim, run by Kim Osterhoudt of Hillsborough, creates all-natural jams, jellies and preserves in both classic flavors like blackberry jam and tangerine marmalade as well as more interesting flavors such as Bartlett pearl and strawberry; blueberry and lemon or even jams from vegetables such as her roasted garlic and sweet onion jam or tomato, orange and ginger jam.

Duke Farmers’ Farm to Table Market: Thursdays 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. starting May 11 until Oct. 26 in front of the Farm Barn Orientation Center at Duke Farms at 1112 Dukes Parkway West, Hillsborough

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