What’s In Season

Strawberry alert! Strawberries are ready at the Dunnville Market.

Strawberry season is here again, and at the farmers market we saw the first glimpses last Saturday of the tasty fruit on a few vendors tables.

Strawberries are an excellent source of Vitamin C, potassium and fibre as well as being low in calories.The size of the berries is not important. All strawberries large and small are equally sweet and juicy.

Here are some helpful hints and recipes to try

How to Store: Remove any damaged berries as soon as possible. Trim damaged areas and use in sauces, ice creams or in baking where appearance doesn’t matter. Store berries in the refrigerator with hulls intact, unwashed, and lightly covered in a single layer. Use within three to six days.
How to Prep Just before serving, gently rinse under cold running water (avoid soaking because the strawberries will absorb water and lose flavour), gently pat dry with paper towels, and hull.
How to Freeze: Strawberries may be frozen whole or sliced, with or without sugar, for up to twelve months. Before using, thaw at room temperature.To freeze without sugar, place in a single layer on a large tray or cookie sheet. Freeze until firm (about one hour), pack in freezer bags drawing off as much air as possible, and seal.
To freeze with sugar, pack in rigid containers, sprinkling sugar between each layer. For every 4 cups (1 L) whole washed and hulled strawberries, allow 1/2 cup (125 mL) granulated sugar; for the same amount of sliced strawberries, allow 3/4 cup (175 mL) of sugar

Strawberry smoothie

This fruity, frothy and good-for-you smoothie can be prepared (without the ice cubes) in the blender and refrigerated overnight ready to blend in the morning.
Makes 4 servings.
Takes 5 minutes.
You’ll need:
· 2 cups (500 mL) Ontario Strawberries, hulled
· 1 cup (250 mL) milk
· 1 cup (250 mL) low-fat strawberry-flavoured yogurt
· 1 tbsp (15 mL) Ontario Liquid Honey
· 4 ice cubes
· 4 Ontario Strawberries
What to do:
1. in blender, combine hulled strawberries, milk, yogurt, honey and ice cubes; process until smooth
2. pour into chilled glasses
3. garnish with fresh strawberry
4. serve immediately

Strawberry Cheesecake Pops

Hands-on Time 10 Mins Total Time 4 Hours Yield Serves 6 (serving size: 1 ice pop) Ingredients
1 (5-ounce) can evaporated low-fat milk
1/4 cup sugar
3 ounces 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup plain fat-free Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons light-colored corn syrup
1 teaspoon lemon juice
10 ounce strawberries, hulled
1/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
· How to Make It
· Step 1· Combine milk and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat; cook 3 minutes. Place cream cheese in a medium bowl; gradually add milk mixture, whisking until smooth. Stir in yogurt and vanilla. Cool completely.·
Step 2· Place corn syrup, juice, and berries in a blender; process until smooth. Divide half of cream cheese mixture among 6 (4-ounce) ice-pop molds. Top with strawberry mixture, followed by remaining cream cheese mixture. Stir slightly with a skewer. Freeze 4 hours or until solid.·
Step 3· Unmold ice pops; dip tips in graham cracker crumbs.

Asparagus alert! Asparagus is ready at the Dunnville Farmers’ Market.

Asparagus is a Spring vegetable, that is a great source of vitamins A and C. One-half cup of cooked asparagus contains 24 calories.
Cooked asparagus is often served with melted butter or hollandaise sauce and paired with boiled or scrambled eggs. It can also be lightly dressed with olive oil, steamed and wrapped in thinly sliced ham or prosciutto, or sautéed with garlic and wild mushrooms.

Here are some helpful hints and recipes to try

Look for straight, crisp spears with green or purple tips with tight heads. It’s freshness, not size, that’s important. One pound (500 g) makes from two to four servings, depending on use

How to Store: Although best eaten fresh, it can be refrigerated for two or three days. Wrap stem ends in damp paper towels, then cover entire bunch with plastic wrap. Or stand straight up in a jug of water.
How to Prep: Wash in cold running water to remove sand or grit. Then snap off and discard tough, woody ends. To keep nutrients, flavour and crisp texture, don’t overcook: thin spears may need less than three minutes. To speed cooking of thick spears, cut an “X” in the bottom of each stalk.
How to Cook: add enough water to saucepan to just cover asparagus. Add 1 tsp (5 mL) salt. Cook until tender crisp, drain well.
To serve hot, use immediately.
To serve cold or use in a recipe, rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.
Other methods of cooking
steaming (4 to 8 minutes, tightly covered), drizzled with oil and oven-roasted (at 500°F/260°C for 8 to 10 minutes)
microwaving (covered with 2 tbsp water on High for 4 to 6 minutes) and stir-frying.
How to Freeze: Prepare the asparagus as you would for cooking, then blanch. Drain well, pat dry and package the asparagus in freezer bags. Freeze immediately. Asparagus may be stored one year

Asparagus-Stuffed Chicken Breasts or Asparagus and Chicken Enchiladas

Asparagus pizza

Fun for the kids  Makes 8 slices. Takes 25 minutes.
You’ll need:·
1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil·
1 onion, halved and thinly sliced·
1 clove garlic, minced·
1 tbsp (15 mL) balsamic vinegar·
1 tsp (5 mL) granulated sugar·
8 to 10 stalks asparagus, cut into 1/2-inch (1 cm) pieces·
1 medium tomato, chopped·
1 tsp (5 mL) dried basil·
Salt and pepper, to taste·
1 baked 12-inch (30 cm) whole wheat pizza crust·
3 tbsp (45 mL) of your favourite cheese, shredded
1. In a frying pan, heat oil over medium-high heat.
2. Sauté onion and garlic until softened and golden, about 8 minutes.
3. Add vinegar and sugar; stir.
4. Add asparagus; cook for 3 minutes.
5. Add tomato, basil, and salt and pepper to taste; cook for 1 minute.
6. Spread asparagus mixture over whole-wheat pizza crust; top with cheese.
7. Place pizza directly on middle oven rack (for softer, chewier crust, bake on cookie sheet). Bake in 375°F (190°C) oven (or according to pizza crust directions on package) for 6 to 8 minutes or until crust browns.
8. Broil for 2 minutes or until cheese begins to bubble.*
recipes from Foodland Ontario

Rhubarb is a Spring thing. Are you ready?

Nothing says Spring better than the first stalks of rhubarb at the farmers’ market. Some of our vendors now have rhubarb in stock.

Botanically, rhubarb is a vegetable but its gets treated as a fruit, despite their tart flavour. All rhubarb is tart to be eaten raw, so you should cook it with plenty of sugar. It is also packed with minerals and vitamins, making it ideal for keeping the bodies healthy.
Rhubarb is such an unusual ingredient, and strictly seasonal, so grab it while you can. Make sure to get extra and freeze for a taste of Spring later in the season.

Here is some helpful hints and a recipes to try
Look for crisp, firm stalks. Colour may vary from various shades of green to deep ruby red. This does not change the flavour.
How to Store: Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for up to one week.
How to Prep: Rinse well, then trim the bottoms and tops. If there are any leaves, slice off and discard (they are toxic). If the stalks are stringy, remove with a small paring knife, as you would for celery.
How to Cook: Because it’s so tart, rhubarb should always be cooked with a sweetener. It’s usually used in baked desserts like crumbles, cakes, and pies. But you can also use in sweet-and-sour chutneys, simmer it in a sugar and ginger syrup to make compotes. You can also toss it with honey, roast briefly, and then add to salads or serve with meats. Or how about making it into wine!
How to Freeze: Rhubarb freezes beautifully. cleaned and cut into pieces or blanched lay it out on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Put the pan in the freezer and freeze until solid. Then transfer the rhubarb to a freezer style zip lock baggie or airtight container. In most cases there’s no need to thaw the rhubarb when you want to use it for cooking.
Caution: Avoid eating rhubarb leaves. They contain oxalic acid which irritates the inside of the mouth and, in some cases, can be fatal.

*this recipe is adapted from Alexandra’s Kitchen taken from the site the view from great island.com

Rhubarb Breakfast Cake

Category: dessert, snack, breakfast Yield: serves 12


  • 1/2 cup (116 grams) half and half
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup, 113 grams) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup (214 grams) granulated sugar plus 2 tsp for sprinkling
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (256 grams) all purpose flour, saving out 1 Tbsp to toss with rhubarb
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cups thinly sliced rhubarb

1. Set oven to 350F Lightly butter a 9×9 square baking pan. I like to line the pan with parchment paper with overhanging ends so I can easily lift out the cooled cake for cutting. That’s optional.
2. Stir the lemon juice into the half and half and set aside.
3. Cream the soft butter and sugar in a stand mixer, or with electric beaters, until fluffy and pale yellow. Beat in the egg and vanilla, scraping down the bowl as necessary.
4. Take 1 Tbsp of the flour to the rhubarb and toss well.
5. Whisk together the remaining flour, baking powder, and salt.
6. Add half of the flour mixture to the bowl and blend in. Add all of the half and half, and blend in. Finally add the rest of the flour and blend just until combined, don’t over mix. Fold in the rhubarb. Note: the batter is on the thick side.
7. Spread the batter into the prepared pan and sprinkle the top evenly with a little sugar. Bake for about 40-45 minutes, or until the cake is turning golden and a toothpick in the center comes out without wet batter clinging to it (moist crumbs are fine.)
8. Let the cake cool slightly before cutting.

Make it your own ~ Other fruit like berries work beautifully in this rhubarb breakfast cake. Also try chopped banana. Mix the topping sugar with a touch of cinnamon for a hint of spice.

Try Turkey Cutlets with Rhubarb Ketchup Recipe or Rhubarb Strawberry Compote From Foodland Ontario

Interesting fact: First known references to the plant are Chinese, dated about 2700 B.C. But it probably originated in Siberia. The word rhubarb comes from the Latin rhabarbum, “near the river [the Volga] of the Barbarians”.However, until 200 hundred years ago, its value was chiefly medicinal and not culinary – it was known to make excellent purgatives and laxatives.Not until after 1778 did it become appreciated for its fruit-like quality at times of year when most fruits were unavailable.Search for:


Maple Syrup is often referred to as the first agricultural crop of the year in Ontario and these  producers work hard to bring the very finest pure maple syrup to you.  and we have two local produces at the Dunnville Farmers’ Market.

Interesting Facts

Maple syrup is a completely natural product with no additives. It is full of minerals and plant proteins.  Filled with Antioxidants

Maple syrup is a superior ingredient to white sugar to increase your antioxidant intake.

 Canada  produces over 70% of the worlds demand of Maple syrup

Kids Page to download

Maple Syrup Brain Teaser download

How Maple Syrup is Made

See link below for more video and information on our local Maple Syrup vendors.

Natural Energy Booster

Pure Canadian maple syrup is an all-natural energy booster and sugar alternative that can help provide nutrition before, during and after exercise. That is right regardless of whether you’re an exercise enthuse, a walker, a bicyclist, or a runner or preparing for next marathon, maple syrup is a 100% natural energy source. It  provides  you with simple carbohydrates that are easily broken down by the body into glucose and used for fuel during exercise.

100% Maple Syrup contains beneficial vitamins and minerals, including manganese, riboflavin, zinc and potassium. These vitamins and minerals combined with simple carbohydrates of pure maple syrup will help provide added nutrition to an exercise program.

Cooking with Maple Syrup

maple syrup can be used as a healthy alternative to sugar in a variety of dishes, such as desserts and baked goods (pies and cakes, just to name a few). The natural sweetener also adds depth and complexity to a wide range of entrees, and can be used as an ingredient in glazes, rubs or barbeque sauces for poultry, meat, seafood or vegetables.


Maple Chicken


2 lb (1 kg) chicken pieces

1/3 cup (75 ml) all-purpose flour

1/4 cup (50 ml) vegetable oil

1/2 cup (125 ml) maple syrup

2 Tbsp (30 ml) cider vinegar

2 Tbsp (30 ml) sherry

2 Tbsp (30 ml) soya sauce

2 tsp (10 ml) ground ginger

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 tsp (2 ml) pepper

1/4 tsp (1 ml) paprika


Coat chicken pieces well with flour. In large nonstick fry pan, add vegetable oil. Cook for 5 minutes, browning well, turn often. Arrange in 9″ x 12″ baking dish. In small bowl, mix together maple syrup, vinegar, sherry, soya sauce, ginger, garlic, pepper and paprika. Pour over chicken evenly. Bake at 350°F for 45 minutes to 1 hour, turning once during baking. Cover with foil, if browning too quickly. Garnish with freshly chopped parsley.

Recipe from  http://www.ontariomaple.com/recipes-main-side-dishes

Bran & Maple Muffins


1 cup oat bran

1 cup fat-free plain Greek yogurt

3/4 cupbran flakes

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1/3 cup chopped dates

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 cup pure maple syrup from Canada

1/4 cup canola oil

1/4 cup water

1 egg


Preheat oven to 350 °F. Line a muffin tin with 12 paper or silicone muffin liners.

In a medium bowl, combine the oat bran with the yogurt and let sit while preparing the other ingredients. In a medium bowl, combine bran flakes, both types of flour, dates, baking soda and cinnamon. In a small bowl, whisk together the maple syrup, oil, water and egg; add to the oat bran and yogurt mixture. Stir in flour mixture just until combined. Spoon into muffin liners. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the muffin center comes out clean. Remove the muffins from the tin and cool on a wire rack.

Recipe from


Come for some Sweet Ontario Maple Syrup right hear at the Dunnville Farmers’ Market  Visit with our vendors to find out more about Maple Syrup.

Richardson’s Farm and Market   James Richardson

Houser’s Home Grown Produce    Chris Houser

Click on our link to learn more about our Maple Syrup Vendors

How Maple Syrup is Made

Facebook links

James Richardson’s Farm & Market Videos on Maple Production

Check out their facebook page for more interesting facts and tours available on the farm


Meet the Vendor   Chris Houser

Houser’s Home Grown Produce | Facebook