Wednesday, July 14, 2010

John Koppelman Recognized by Hawthorne's City Council & Mark Ridley-Thomas

Last night John Koppelman submitted a speaker card to address the Hawthorne City Council to update them on the Farmers Market's First Year.  Well, the Council was prepared to address him, thanks to Mayor pro tem Danny Juarez who presented a City of Hawthorne Proclamation for John's tenacity and commitment to the Farmers Market that serves the Hawthorne Community.   "Wow...I'm surprised, I was here to talk about the Farmers Market. I'm very passionate about the Market, it's been a wonderful experience, there Sat I'm setting up and tearing it down, and um... most of the time I'm real enthusiastic, every once in a while I think I should have my head examined,  it's only a fleeting thought." followed by laughter by the crowd. "We have new vendors, the newest vendor has a breakfast burrito, which it's only Tuesday and I'm already salivating. With the variety increasing, families come, kids on their bicycles, a real family atmosphere.  I'm real proud of that. Thanks for the help from the City Council the Mayor, you've all contributed in your own ways, my wife Ema she really is a big back bone, takes care of stuff,  bails me out in a pinch" . What did I say in an early post, behind every great man is a great woman!!! That is Ema. 

Appreciate John's acknowledgement.  "Susan Hillyer our Market Manager she's indispensable, she takes care making sure we have good vendors, she's very aggressive in going out to the farms to assure that our farmers are who they say they are, the market's certified by the Department of Agriculture so we must follow the rules.  You can't bring fruit you buy to sell at the market. Susan watches for that and if it's not in season she picks up right away and goes to the farm. She's vigilant that our reputation stays in tact. Thank you to Sean Walsh, he's been very helpful and he and his wife Robyn sponsored the Jumper at the July 3rd Celebration Thanks Sean."
But that wasn't the end of the evening.  Mark Ridley Thomas who visited our market on July 3rd also wanted to recognize John.  Unable to attend last night's council meeting I presented on his behalf which read "Los Angeles County Commendation to John Koppelman for his dedicated service, to the affairs of the community and for the civic pride demonstrated by numerous contributions for the benefit of all the citizens of Los Angeles County."

It was a great evening for John and great to see him acknowledged by the leaders of Hawthorne & LA County - Hawthorne City Council & Mark Ridley Thomas.

You'll see John at the Hawthorne Del Aire Farmers Market 9am - 1pm every Saturday Rain or Shine in the parking lot of Aviation & West 135th Street.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Hollywood Salad Bowl

You know it's summer when you've been to the Bowl. The following Salad was my contribution to last nights picnic at the Hollywood Bowl.
Thanks to our Farmers it was a hit!
The evening was tremendous. It was A Beetles Celebration with the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra conducted by Thomas Wilkins (love him!!!) and special guests Patti Austin, Rob Laufer, Bettye LaVette (must add to my IPod), Todd Rundgren, Brian Stokes Mitchell (Wowza!)
Hollywood Salad Bowl with Blackberry Vinaigrette
Yield: 4+ servings
1 tablespoon olive oil - Olive Press
1 tablespoon minced shallots - Gama Farm
1 teaspoon minced garlic - Vang Family Farm

1 Heirloom Tomatoe Brandy - Vang Family Farm
1 pint fresh blackberries, plus extra for garnish - Santiago Farm
1/2 cup white balsamic vinegar - Olive Press
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint - Vang Family
1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon - ABC Rhubarb
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/2 cup light olive oil
6 cups mixed greens, well washed and spun dry
Mix of Arugula & Amaranth (Chinese Red Spinach) - Vang Family
1/4 Small Red Onion Thinly Sliced - Uristoigi Farm
1/4 cup roughly chopped toasted pistachios - Peanut Dude
4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
1 avocado, peeled, seeded, and thinly sliced - Gama
1 Lemon Cucumber thinly sliced - Capay Organic
1 Cup of Chilled Chicken Cubed (poached in lemon water) - La Bahn Chicken & Eggs
In a large skillet, heat the oil over a medium-high heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the blackberries and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Deglaze the pan with the vinegars and cook until reduced by half, about 30 seconds.
Remove from the heat and transfer to a blender. Add the sugar, mint and tarragon, and process to a smooth paste. Add the salt and pepper. With the machine running, add the light olive oil through the feed tube and process until smooth.
Strain through a fine mesh sieve into a clean bowl and refrigerate until completely cool, about 1 hour.
To make the salads, in a large bowl, combine the greens with the pistachios and toss with the vinaigrette until lightly coated. Season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
To plate, divide the greens among 4 plates and top with the goat cheese & chicken. Arrange sliced red onion, avocado slices decoratively around the edges, and serve. Garnish with extra blackberries.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Survey Says...

With the help of Survey Monkey we've created a Survey .

The Purpose, to improve the Market as we go into our Second Year! 

Appreciate your Feedback so we can Give Back to what YOU want from YOUR Certified Farmers Market!

Click HERE to participate in the Survey!

Option to enter to win 4 Family Dodger Game Tickets at the end of the Survey!

Thank you!!

Dubious Farmers Tour

It's important that our Farmers represent their certification they hold. After David Karp's Los Angeles Times Friday online article July 2nd, he suggested there are a few dubious farmers in our market. Monday on a 400+ mile trek in the Jeep (off roading at times) to find out the facts about these alleged dubious farmers.  It was a great trip where I met Farmers, their Families, a 3rd Generation Family Owned & Operated butcher serving the high desert & a Hungarian Sausage Maker which I'm still enjoying because of course I had to take some home.  More to this post on Friday after my second visit.  
As Farmers Market Managers we rely on Certification issued by the department of Agriculture.  As important as that Certification is, we as Market Managers work together to assure our Farmers bringing what they Farm.
Thank You David Karp for the Write Up!
It was Awsome to see the Review of the Hawthorne Del Aire Farmers Market & Our Farmers In the LOS ANGELES TIMES!!!!

Mark Ridley-Thomas Visit's the Hawthorne Del Aire Farmers Market

Pleased and honored that Mark Ridley-Thomas visited the Hawthorne Del Aire Farmers Market last Saturday July 3rd.  Amazed that he found the time to come by.  President of the Del Aire Neighborhood Association John Koppelman, "Big John", as Mark Ridley-Thomas call's him, walked the market introducing the Farmers & Food Vendors that make up  our market.  It was exactly one year ago that Mr Ridley-Thomas visited. Pleased to show him the progress thanks to the community we support!


A Celebration of the first Anniversary of the Farmers Market brought out the community who's
support & patronage is why the market has made it through a rollar coaster year. The market is a success and trending positively over last year's sales.  With new vendors & farmers at the height of production it's the place to be on Saturday Mornings. 
Appreciation to:
John Koppelman (the Farmers Market was his idea afterall)
Ema Koppelman (you know what they say about every great man, there's a great woman)
Sean Walsh (President of the HollyGlen Association)
Robyn Walsh (Supporter, Gardener & Baker)
Danny Juarez (Hawthorne City Councilman)
Don Harris(Our Insurance Man)
Harley & Bill (Wiseburn Watch)
Sarah Nitsos (Anza Elementary School & Customer)
Da Vinci Charter School
Mary Lou Weiss (Torrance & Hermosa Farmers Markets)
Greta Dunlop (Beverly Hills & So. Pasadena Farmers Market)
Natalie Dushon (Manhattan Beach Farmers Market)Paul - El Segundo Driving Museum
Douglas Kraus (City of Hawthorne)
Dr Alice
Lisa Mead (Volunteer Nutritionist)
Ibitsiam (LA County Nutrition Program)
Gold's Gym
Our Famers (they are the Heart of the Farmers Market)
Our Food Vendors (you are what makes us different)
Each & Every Customer!!!