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Sebastopol market shines after the storm

On Sunday, the Sebastopol Farmers Market was smaller than usual, though it was hard to tell, given the market's location shift. For the month of December, the market moves to the town plaza so holiday shoppers have access to parking. It will return to its usual spot Jan. 6.

Although the market opens at 10 a.m., the day begins much earlier for farmers and ranchers, who must harvest if they have not already done so, pack and drive, sometimes a fair distance, and then spend an hour or more setting up their booths. At the time many of the vendors needed to head to town, the storm was still having its way with us and thousands were without power.

Several venders were unable to make it, but by mid-morning, as rains stopped, clouds parted and a pretty blue sky seemed like an early Christmas present, those who had canceled were groaning and kicking themselves. Those who braved the early morning rains were in great spirits.

Produce vendors included Orchard Farms; Earthworker Farm; First Light Farm; Schletewitz Family Farms and Armstrong Valley Farm, which still had eggs at 11:30 a.m. Among them, they offer everything you need to make bone-warming soups, vegetable stews and winter salads, including garlic, shallots, onions, leeks, Italian parsley, arugula, cabbage, Napa cabbage, celery, celery root, beets, carrots, fennel, several varieties of kale and chard, potatoes and winter squashes.

Hector Alvarez had his honey products, eggs and a huge array of fresh and dried chiles.

Pepper Road Poultry had chicken and Weirauch Farm offered their delicious cheeses, though they do not currently have their popular Tomme Fraiche, as they've recently lost their source of cow's milk (for more on this recent development, visit Eat This Now at pantry.blogs.pressdemocrat.com). Javier's Goat Ranch had its delicious cheeses, along with a caramel made with goats' milk he calls raw-milk natilla.

J & S Apple Juice had their apple juice, the best commercial apple juice I've ever tasted. Heron Fox had both plant starts and almonds.

Rainbow's End Farm attended, with a new supply of gorgeous dried persimmons. The Hummus Guy offered hummus and other condiments, flatbreads and chips.

The Sebastopol Certified Farmers Market, founded in 1994 and currently managed by Paula Downing, takes place in the town plaza at McKinley and Petaluma Avenues, on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. For more information, visit sebastopolfarmersmarket.org. The market is one of four county-wide that operate year round. The others are the Santa Rosa Original Certified Farmers Market; the Redwood Empire Farmers Market, also in Santa Rosa, and the Sonoma Valley Certified Farmers Market in Sonoma.

Michele Anna Jordan hosts "Mouthful" each Sunday at 7 p.m. on KRCB 90.9 & 91.1 FM. E-mail Jordan at michele@micheleannajordan.com. You'll find her blog, "Eat This Now," at pantry.blogs.pressdemocrat.com


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