The Gleaner

Get cooking this Valentine’s Day!

The Huntingdon County Farmers’ Market will be hosting three winter markets across the Haut-Saint-Laurent in the coming months. The first of these will be a Valentine’s Day-themed market in Sainte-Barbe, at the community centre on February 11.

The Market’s coordinator, Cynthia Roy, says that as always you will find a wide variety of unique products, “from fresh fruits and vegetables, meats, to fine chocolates, wines, ciders, and local beers, as well as woodworking, soaps, candles, and plenty of baked goods and preserves. A full list of vendors can be found on the Market’s Facebook page.

Farmers’ markets are a great way to learn about the different artisans and producers in the region. At the Huntingdon County Farmers’ Market, says Roy, there is a selection process to ensure quality. “The selection committee chooses its vendors very carefully to give the best experience to the visitors, allowing them to find high-quality products and the best selection possible,” she says, adding that any extra expense, compared to a grocery store, is justified by the quality. “The produce you buy at a farmers’ market will also last you a lot longer, and you know exactly where it came from.”

With Valentine’s Day around the corner, this first market offers a chance to buy quality ingredients for a romantic dinner. “You can create the perfect dinner with the local meat and vegetable producers. If you don’t feel like cooking, you can also get prepared meals,” Roy says. There will also be options for drinks and dessert to pair with whatever you choose to serve.

In terms of gifts, Roy shares that “There will be locally made jewelry, soaps and body care products, preserves, and teas.” Giving a gift from a local vendor versus a big online store makes it more personal and unique. “Buying a locally sourced gift shows that you are putting more time and effort into gift giving, rather than just buying something from the checkout aisle of the store,” she adds. Plus, you’re stimulating the local economy.

If you miss the Valentine’s Day market, you can attend the event at the recreation centre in Ormstown on March 24 (just in time for Easter!), or the next one the Huntingdon Adult Education and Community Centre in Huntingdon on April 14.

Roy says they are always looking for new vendors and products, meaning that there are often new things for clients to try. From black garlic to elderberry products to baked goods, the scope of treasures to be found at the market is always expanding.

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