Farmers’ Market relishes vendor’s award

Mar. 11, 2014 @ 06:11 PM

At the South Durham Farmers’ Market, we are proud to have one of our many wonderful vendors, Two Chicks Farm, recently reap some well deserved recognition for the quality and tastiness of their products.

The Two Chicks are Audrey Lin and Debbie Donnald of Hillsborough, and, at the SDFM, they are represented by the always cheerful Dana Baldwin, who calls herself the “Old Hen” of the flock. They produce and sell an array of pickled and fermented foods, including beets, jalapenos, kimchi, sauerkraut and seasonal offerings such as salsa and cranberry relish. They grow most of their own vegetables to ensure access to the freshest possible ingredients. And in January, their hard work was recognized with a Good Food Award in the pickle category for their savory Dill Kraut n’ Pickles.

The Good Food Awards honor food producers that not only have a delicious product, but also demonstrate social and environmental responsibility. This year, 1,450 entries were submitted for the 10 categories for which awards are given (beer, charcuterie, cheese, chocolate, coffee, confections, pickles, preserves, spirits and oil). In addition to Two Chicks Farm, there were three other local winners, including Guglhupf Bakery’s smoked hog head cheese, Videri Chocolate Factory’s 90 percent dark chocolate Ecuador Camino Verde, and WR Chocolatier’s mocha.

Two Chicks’ award-winning Dill Kraut n’ Pickles is made from a refreshingly short list of ingredients:  cabbage, garlic, dill, cucumbers and a little Himalayan pink sea salt. (Of course, there are two other important components: a healthy lactobacilli culture and time.) Their unique recipe was the happy result of an abundant cucumber harvest and the desire to create a new sauerkraut.

Coincidentally, around the time I began managing the market, I became increasingly interested in fermented foods. I had read several books and articles extolling the many benefits of eating foods containing live bacteria, so I was very pleased to find such an ideal purveyor in Two Chicks Farm.

It’s easy to forget how fortunate we are to be surrounded by an abundance of good local foods in the Triangle, but the national notice our food producers and chefs continue to garner is a helpful reminder of just how good we eat. To pick up your own jar of Dill Kraut n’ Pickles, come visit us next Saturday and also enjoy our special St. Patrick’s Day market celebration. We will be hosting another excellent local source of fermented goods: Fullsteam Brewery! 

Elizabeth Zander is market manager for the South Durham Farmers’ Market, which in winter is open 9 a.m. noon each Saturday at Greenwood Commons Shopping Center, 5410 NC Highway 55.