Aquidneck Growers’ Saturday Farmers’ Market

The local harvest arrives Saturdays at the Aquidneck Growers' Farmers' Market in Middletown, RI.

The local harvest arrives Saturdays at the Aquidneck Growers' Farmers' Market in Middletown, RI.

The Aquidneck Growers’ Farmers’ Market takes place Saturdays during harvest time on the field next to the Newport Vineyards & Winery.  Although today we’re about halfway through the season, there still aren’t many fruits — except blueberries, of course, as well as some pretty hard nectarines and peaches.  But I did find an abundance of locally grown vegetables and leafy greens from local farms such as Simmons Farm, Sweet Berry Farm, and Paradise Hill Farm.

This morning, I bought tomatoes, beets, squash, garlic, corn, and red onions.  Geoff bought radishes and hot dogs.  I also spotted eggplants, onions, carrots, kale, swiss chard, green beans, and plenty more.  Having now tried both the corn from Paradise Hill and Simmons, I can now officially declare my preference for the corn from Simmons.  There are also a variety of bakeries (Olga’s Cup and Saucer has excellent pizza doughs and blueberry scones); creameries (try Narragansett Creamery’s Atwell’s Gold or ricotta cheese); and even one butcher (Pat’s Pastured sells top-notch poultry and pork).

Hey, I love avocados too, but I’d almost always rather buy something at a Farmers’ Market than the supermarket.  Shopping at farmers’ markets isn’t cheap — it’s a bit like gambling in that you should arrive with the money you’re prepared to lose.  Even so, it’s always worth it — you certainly get the freshest produce and products, in addition to the satisfaction of supporting local farms and producers.

Aquidneck Growers Farmers Market
June 6-October 24, 2009
Saturdays 9am-1pm at Newport Vineyards & Winery
909 East Main Road
Middletown, RI
www.farmfresh.org/food/farmersmarkets_details.php?market=1

I’d Rather Be at Frosty Freez

I challenge you: who doesn't love Frosty Freez?

I challenge you: who doesn't love Frosty Freez?

If you have a soft spot for soft serve, you must immediately head to Frosty Freez in Middletown, RI.  I have to admit, I have something of an obsession with ice cream and soft serve to the point where my husband once asked me last summer if it was okay that our 18-month old daughter ate ice cream daily.  As I discovered, a cookie or a chocolate could be eaten on the sly, but an ice cream cone is hard to conceal from a toddler.

If I’m within driving, walking or hitch-hiking distance from Frosty Freez, I will go and eat my favorite ice cream — a medium chocolate and vanilla ice cream swirl.  I do not mar my ice cream with jimmies or chocolate or cherry dip, although if that’s your thing, they accommodate you.  And although I keep telling myself I will switch over to their low-calorie Only 8 (which is, in fact, quite good as well), those words just never come out of my mouth when I order.

Here are my words of advice as a Frosty Freez expert.  If you go, do not order the hard-pack ice cream — it’s mostly Hersheys and it’s ordinary.  If your child wants some blue colored hard pack ice cream, do not permit him it.  Instead, here are your options: chocolate, vanilla and coffee soft serve ice cream or Only 8 chocolate and vanilla.  They also have ‘flavor burst’ which they can swirl into vanilla for additional flavors.  And don’t go from October 1 to March 31 — they’re closed.  I know, that’s hard news to hear, but it’s true.  To get around this, I even once emailed Garelick Farms who supplies their milk to find out if there was some other Frosty Freez imitation made with their milk on the eastern seaboard, but they never got back to me.  So there will be times, when even I will not be at Frosty Freez, which is why I have joined the Facebook group “I’d Rather Be at Frosty Freez.”

Frosty Freez
496 East Main Road
Middletown, RI 02842
http://frostyfreez.com