Despite the autumn chill, fresh, local food is still at our fingertips. Chicagoland is home to several year-round Farmers Markets that give you the opportunity to buy local, support the economy, and get the most nutrition out of the best food. Doug D’Avico, Executive Chef Trattoria No 10 says local produce can be used almost year-round, “We do the best we can to keep our produce as local as possible at Trattoria No. 10."
, Founder of the Organic School Project
says food this time of year grows for a reason, “It’s medicine. It grows right now because our bodies need it. It is good for us.” Good for us and for the earth because it came from less than a hundred miles away.
At the Green City Market
, demonstrations give you ideas and it’s still open every Wednesday and Saturday. Christian showed us what he would pick up to make a quick and tasty leek and carrot soup made with all things local! Garnish soup with fresh Kale. (see recipe below)
Green City Market features local, organic free-range meats like lamb as well as their produce. A substitute for turkey for a smaller family around the holidays says Christian would be local lamb, “I would rub garlic, olive oil, Dijon mustard. By the time it's brown it's done. This is no twelve hour turkey."
Even celery leafs – that’s right – the tops of celery can make a killer salad says Chef D’Avico, “We slice them real thin, take goat cheese and fresh herbs a little nice arugula, pine nuts and lemon dressing you’ve got a really nice starter salad."
There are so many reasons to cook local and buy local says Christian, “If you can look the farmer in the eye and you can see their truck changes are it's got more flavor and nutrition and maybe there's a little more love, care, and compassion that goes into it."
LEEK AND CARROT SOUP
By: Greg Christian
3 cups leeks (wash after you cut (sand gets in them))
3 cups carrots (remember, no need to peel)
1 cup celery root
1 head of garlic
2 medium sized potatoes--chopped
1/4 cup butter
1/2 gallon veg stock
Cook all veg(except potato) together very slowly Until clear--maybe one hour (400 F in Conventional Oven)
Stirring once in a while
Then add stock and potato
Boil 10 minutes(until potato done)
Add salt and pepper
Finish with whatever your heart calls to you--chopped parsley Good blue cheese/cooked chicken chunks/potato chips/fried leeks/crème fraiche...