Note: This is our Stargazer Hollow blog; for official news from HFM please always check the official Hingham Farmers Market website here.

Starting this Saturday, August 15, the long-awaited return of a more typical walk-up Hingham Farmers Market will be back!

The market takes place every Saturday in the Station Street Lot at 95 Station Street, Hingham, MA from 9AM to 1PM rain or shine.  See this article in the Hingham Anchor for more information on the overall market plan.

Social Distancing Precautions

Safety is of the utmost concern! Foot traffic will be one-way and capacity will be monitored to ensure appropriate distancing is possible.  Masks are required, and vendors will be wearing masks and gloves.

Please keep in mind:

  • To ensure that produce is not touched, we will have our produce display set back from the front of our tent
    • I will be happy to show you the tomatoes and let you pick your favorite by pointing!
  • We will continue selling as many items as possible by the “each” or by the “bag” instead of weighing out items
  • Touchless card payments are preferred
    • We take Square, and have both a card “tap” and a card “swipe” reader which will be regularly wiped down

 

Pre-Orders Are Still Available

We, as well as most other vendors, are continuing to support pre-orders which can be picked up directly at our booth — we will have your order pre-bagged and labeled and set safely aside for you.

Our pre-orders will be restocked every Sunday for the following week, and our pre-order site is: https://stargazerhollow.square.site/ 

At current time of printing, all vendor pre-order information can be found on the HFM site here.

 

SNAP is Available, with Matching Funds

With the return of the walk-up market comes the return of SNAP tokens! There will be a tent for SNAP up ahead of the entrance, which will allow exchange of SNAP funds for tokens which can be redeemed to vendors for food items.  

Please see this article in the Hingham Anchor for more info.

 

 

Hello, friends! Please join us virtually for an online demo of the refrigerator pickling method on Sunday, August 2, 2020 at 2PM EST.

This is the link to the online event registration page: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/refrigerator-pickling-demo-by-meghan-from-stargazer-hollow-farm-tickets-113926408956

Last night there was a powerful and sudden storm that centered on our neighboring town of Westwood.

Our farm had significant flooding, best noted by the 8″ piles of woodchips stacking up in some areas of our garden, having been washed out from between our raised rows.  

The most damaged crops that we can tell so far are the corn, sunflowers, lilies, and snap peas — not surprising, as these are all plants that you would expect to be damaged by heavy winds, but sad nonetheless.

We can’t yet tell what the impact to some of our other plants, like our tomatoes and cucumbers, will be.  They were displaced and sitting in standing water and the rain continues on today.  Potatoes seem to also have some damage that we’ll need to dive into to determine.

Nature is such a powerful force in farming. 

Just a few days ago, we were sharing with customers that we were having a hard time with some of our crops due to lack of rain, and our part of Massachusetts was officially in a moderate drought, as has recently happened year after year.  Then, with a single night of heavy rains, we have flooding so severe that local stores are still closed this morning trying to mop up, and our local hospital evacuated patients. 

As the rain lightens up today, we’ll be out to evaluate and salvage things.  

Thank you all for your support and well wishes, and I will communicate any changes to this week’s pre-orders if need be — so far, the main things that we have for sale all seem fine, it was mostly later-season crops that have severe damage.

Happy National Pollinator Week! 

National Pollinator Week is an official federal recognition of the importance of pollinators to our ecosystem, sparked particularly by colony collapse of honeybees.  It became an official week in 2007 with unanimous approval by the US Senate.

Some things that you can do to help your local pollinators:

  • Avoid spraying pesticides on your lawn unless necessary – and if so, hire a professional who is knowledgeable about protections for pollinators.
  • Plant clover and native wildflowers in your yard.
    • Clover makes an excellent lawn, if you would like to lessen your lawn maintenance at the same time! It is soft underfoot, green, and grows much slower and tops out much shorter than grass.
  • If you find a swarm of bees, don’t panic! Contact your local beekeepers association, and they will send someone out to get them for you.
  • Contact your legislators to ask them to back H.763 – An Act to protect Massachusetts pollinators!

Remember: No bees, no food!

June is Pride month, in recognition and support of LGBTQ+ community members and in remembrance of those who came before us and fought for our rights.

Unfortunately, most of the Pride events we would typically attend have been canceled as large gatherings are unsafe due to COVID-19.  Normally, we attend Boston and Providence Pride, and this year I was going to try making some rainbow roses to bring along!

Thank you, during Pride month and at all times of the year, for supporting a queer-owned business.

 –

Snap Pea Risotto with Garlic Scape Butter

An ode to late spring, this fresh risotto features snap peas and tender garlic scapes.
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Keyword 30 minutes, risotto, Snap Peas
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 4

Equipment

  • Large Skillet
  • Medium Saucepan

Ingredients

  • 3 C Chicken Broth
  • 1 C White Wine
  • 1 C Arborio Rice
  • 1/3 C Atwells Gold Cheese grated
  • 1 C Sugar Snap Peas trimmed and cut into ½” pieces
  • 1/4 C Scallions chopped
  • 1 T Olive Oil
  • 2 T Garlic Scape Butter

Instructions

  • Set out ingredients
  • In a medium saucepan, heat chicken broth to medium heat
  • In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium high heat
  • Add scallions to skillet and cook for 3 minutes
  • Add rice, stir to combine ensuring rice is coated with oil. Cook for approximately 2 minutes.
  • Turn the heat on the pan to medium-high, add the wine, and cook, stirring constantly, until the wine is absorbed.
  • Add one soup ladle of stock from the saucepan to the pan at a time, stirring constantly until absorbed.
  • Along with the final ladle of stock, add the snap peas. After absorbing this final ladle, the rice should be tender, but still have a crisp exterior. This takes 20-25 minutes.
  • Remove from heat, and add garlic scape butter and Atwell’s Gold cheese.

Notes

To make Garlic Scape Butter, blend 1 stick of butter with 2-3 garlic scapes in a food processor until smooth.
Atwell's Gold cheese is available from Narragansett Creamery. If unavailable, you can substitute Asiago.
3 ducklings cuddled together on a heating pad in a cardboard box

Today we welcomed three new members to the Stargazer Hollow team — a trio of Indian Runner Ducklings!

3 ducklings cuddled together on a heating pad in a cardboard boxThey are just two days old today, and will live inside with the family until they grow enough of their adult feathers to be ready to swim in the duck pool with our three adults.  I expect this will be sometime around the end of August.

Living on a small farm with limited space for now, we are keeping to a maximum of 6 ducks.  In the future, when we have bought a larger property, we definitely want a big flock! The ducks are delightful to watch, and their eggs are our most popular product at the markets.

All three ducks are likely to lay blue or blue-tinted eggs, once they start laying.  I’d expect their first eggs around the end of September.

Without further ado…

Xena is a black runner duck, like Aurora.

Zelda is a blue runner duck, like Cinder.

Leia is a chocolate runner duck, our first one!

The ducklings took their first trip outside today as well, since it was a nice day.  They explored the herb garden and had a few snacks.

A basket full of colorful eggs with decorative daisy flowers. In the corner, text that says "National Egg Day".

Yesterday was National Egg Day, according to those fun “unusual holiday” calendars.  A basket full of colorful eggs with decorative daisy flowers.  In the corner, text that says "National Egg Day".

We celebrated by gathering up this week’s eggs in a basket to take a picture of their awesome variations.  Our ducks lay eggs with shells that are different colors from each other, which is pretty cool to see! This doesn’t impact the taste or color of the egg itself at all, and is mostly related to the bloom on the egg.

The eggs are also still coming out with some variation in size, since the ducks are young and only recently started laying.  Buttercup is the first duck to lay consistently — basically all “extra large” size white pretty eggs.

We also gave the ducks a bouquet of trimmed arugula flowers as a treat!

In honor of National Egg Day, I’d also like to pass along a recommendation for my ideal method of making scrambled eggs.  Such an easy food, but it’s so easy to make bad scrambled eggs.  Follow these instructions and it’ll be perfect.

 

Radish Risotto

Course Main Course
Keyword 30 minutes, radish, risotto
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 4

Equipment

  • Saucepan, large
  • Pan, large

Ingredients

  • 12 French Breakfast Radishes chopped
  • 1 C Radish Greens roughly chopped
  • 6 C Chicken Stock
  • 1 C White Wine
  • 2 C Arborio Rice
  • 1/2 C Parmesan cheese grated
  • 3 shallots diced
  • 1 clove garlic minced (about 3/4T)
  • 5 T butter (or olive oil)
  • 1 dash Lemon Pepper optional
  • Fresh Mint to garnish

Instructions

  • Prepare ingredients and set out so you will not need to step away from the risotto while it cooks.
  • In a large saucepan, heat the chicken stock to medium temperature. Do not remove from heat during cooking process.
  • In a large pan over medium heat, melt 3T butter and add the shallots and garlic. Cook until soft and aromatic, approximately 5 minutes.
  • Add radishes and cook for approximately 2 minutes.
  • Add rice, stir to combine ensuring rice is coated with butter. Cook for approximately 2 minutes.
  • Turn the heat on the pan to medium-high, add the wine, and cook, stirring constantly, until the wine is absorbed.
  • Add one soup ladle of stock from the saucepan to the pan at a time, stirring constantly until absorbed.
  • Along with the final ladle of stock, add the radish greens. After absorbing this final ladle, the rice should be tender, but still have a crisp exterior. This takes 20-25 minutes.
  • Remove pan from heat, and stir in parmesan cheese, remaining butter, and 1 dash of lemon pepper.
  • Serve, adding a few fresh mint leaves on top for garnish.

 

Some quick additional tips for making great risotto:

  1. Have patience! When you are adding each ladle of broth, it’s important to make sure the previous ladle has fully absorbed.
  2. Use tools that work for you.  I really like using a pasta spoon for all this mixing!
  3. Remove the risotto completely from heat before adding final ingredients, particularly cheeses.
Meghan and her sister Hannah are at a farmers market, in front of the sign. They are wearing masks.

Yesterday, my little sister Hannah and I had a booth at the Hingham Farmers Market, officially marking our very first day at market for Stargazer Hollow!Meghan and her sister Hannah are at a farmers market, in front of the sign. They are wearing masks.

Due to COVID-19 and state precautions, the market is running as a pre-order, pre-paid market.  We had all the customer orders pre-bagged and labeled, and the customers drove up to pick up their orders.

This meant our table was pretty bare (just gloves and sanitizer) and we were wearing face masks, making for a pretty unusual-looking market day!

I am so happy that we got to start at market, and so grateful to everyone who decided to try out our food — I hope everything was great! Our very first order ever was for 6 duck eggs, on the same day that we finally woke up in the morning to have 1 egg from each duck in the coop!

The Hingham Farmers Market runs 9AM-12PM every Saturday, and is currently at the Station Street Lot at 95 Station Street in Hingham.