Trending topics that have kicked off the month of February on the East End of Long Island are the arctic blasts and the Riverhead Farmers Market — polar opposites: an oppressive freeze and a nourishing thaw. On Groundhog Day opposing predictions from Punxsutawney Phil was for six more weeks of winter and Long Island’s very own Malverne Mel and Holtsville Hal for an early spring. Unfortunately, I think Punxsutawney Phil is right. But one thing is certain (I predicted this one); the Riverhead Farmers Market is a huge success. On the first day, hundreds of eager attendees swarmed through the front and back entrances of the 8,000-square-foot old Swezey’s Department store downtown. It took me 15 minutes to find a parking spot, and I was a few moments shy of purchasing some of my favorite edibles.
The theme of the day? Sold out.
Miss Lady Root Beer was dry of their small batch root beer by noon. I was bummed. I had plans to make poached pears and a marinade for tasty short ribs. I snatched a growler of Moustache Brewing Company’s Everyman’s Porter, as they eventually became tapped. Browder’s Birds ran out of their eggs twice after going back to the farm to replenish; thankfully I grabbed a dozen. And the theme continued: Tend Coffee, Kalypso Greek Yogurt, Blue Duck Bakery, Merkin Fisheries, Goodale Farms, Race Rock Oysters and Moustache Brewing Company all sold out. I made my way to chef Lia Fallon of the Riverhead Project where I sampled Moroccan egg salad with green mango and a snow pudding of meringue, lemon curd and a currant that resembled a cracked egg.
After indulging, I scurried over to the North Fork Chocolate Company, which makes artisanal chocolates and desserts from products of the local farmers. I bought the espresso chip bark crafted using LiV espresso vodka. Fallon’s snow pudding and the handcrafted bark of the North Fork Chocolate Company inspired my lemon curd chocolate tart, a sweet treat sure to please your sweetheart this Valentine’s Day.
Visit outeastfoodie for the full blog post and recipe.
Riverhead Farmers Market, Saturdays 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. until May 17.