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I also bid farewell to my favourite designer chocolates. Like the black bears, chocolatier Sarah Plummer of Sweet Sarahendipity will slumber into sweet hibernation after Thanksgiving. The bright, colourful, airbrushed chocolates will fade into old man winter’s memory. Unfortunately, the yearning for creative dark chocolate concoctions will painfully persevere through sleet, hail and snow — the deep-to-the-bottom-of-your-soul cravings can’t be fooled or dazzled by a grocery-store-bought-bar.
Sarah’s new white chocolate-centred morsel capped in dark chocolate and set with a swirl of blue will haunt me, as will her nougat squares bejeweled with pistachios, apricots and almonds.
The salty, soft caramels encased in dark chocolate; the milk chocolate crisps dressed more colourfully than a bad Christmas sweater; and the playful fruit layers changing up every week faster than weather patterns will no longer tuck me in with a book and cup of tea — bad for my cravings, great for my waistline.
Good-for-you stops at the market included potatoes from Across the Creek Organics for a roast chicken dinner; eggplant, green pepper and zucchini from Glen Valley Artichoke Farm for a ratatouille; wonderfully sticky and pungent garlic and Thai basil from Mojave Kaplan and William Hayward’s organic stand for pasta dishes; and of course chicken and cheese dog cookies at Canine Confections — with ingredients you might find in your own kitchen, humans could even eat these.
It’s cash-only at the stalls, so leave the plastic at home and bring a cloth bag to carry things.
Some boutique food creations can be costly, but the quality of product, support of independent businesses and the local economy makes up for it. You can find some killer deals on vegetables by visiting the farms directly — and good news, many farms are open for business past Thanksgiving weekend.
I will miss my fresh local blueberries on cottage cheese routine and my organic rainbow-coloured beets on pigweed salad tradition. I’ll now have to read labels to get to know my produce and product, rather than meet the farmer or food artisan face to face. Buying local will become more of a hunt, but I am armed and ready with my cloth bag and the farmer’s market slow food philosophy of buying local and thinking global for the winter months. I’ll have to adopt a new Sunday ritual with trips to Pemberton to continue to stock up on slow food.
It will be eight months, roughly 249 days and approximately 6,696 hours before I’ll have gelato for breakfast again — do you think the Shepherd family is in the white pages?