The Richmond Register

April 23, 2013

What’s on your plate?

By Gina Noe
Extension Agent

MADISON COUNTY — Madison county farmers are gearing up for another busy Farmers’ Market season. Some cool weather crops are already being harvested and are available  at the Berea Farmers’ Market located in the Berea College Agriculture Building (230 N. Main, Berea), Fridays from 3:30-6 p.m.  Salad greens are available as well as a variety of baked goods, dried foods, eggs and other farm fresh commodities.

The Madison County Farmers’ Market will be opening in mid-May in the Lowes parking lot in Richmond on Saturday mornings, from 8 a.m. to 12 noon, and later in the season will also be open on Tuesdays. They plan to continue the market on Eastern Kentucky University’s campus on Thursdays starting in June.

In Madison County, consumers have many options when it comes to accessing fresh produce. Besides shopping our local farmers’ markets, many grow their own gardens and share their bounty with neighbors and friends. Others may shop at road side stands, local produce stores, or utilize you pick operations.  Many grocery stores or convenient marts also feature local seasonally grown foods. For some consumers nothing tastes better than fresh vegetables or fruit picked at its prime and prepared within a few hours.

If you would like to learn more about eating healthy and purchasing locally grown foods, sign up for the Plate It Up! Kentucky Proud Class. This lesson includes recipes, nutrition information, how to best utilize your Farmers’ Market and information about the Plate it Up! Kentucky Proud Program.

The class will be held Tuesday, April 30 at 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. at the Madison County Extension Education Center at 230 Duncannon Lane. Participants will receive recipes and samples for produce that are grown and can be purchased locally.

Through a partnership with Kentucky Department of Agriculture and the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service, nutritious great tasting recipes have been created and marketed to consumers throughout the Commonwealth.

The recipes highlight locally grown fruits and vegetables, which contribute to the stability of local food systems and healthier family lifestyles.

Students and instructors in experimental foods classes at the University of Kentucky modify recipes from Extension Homemakers, county agents and others. The recipes are evaluated on taste, ease of preparation and nutritional value.

Three to four recipes are selected and published for each season. Since the project began in 2010, forty-three recipes have been developed.

If you would like to learn more about this program, taste some delicious samples and add to your recipe collection, call 859-623-4072 to reserve your seat. This program is free and open to the public.

Educational programs of the Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service serve all people regardless of race, color, age, sex, religion, disability or national origin.