In the last few years there has been a boom in year round availability of local food, my ability to participate in the Dark Days Challenge is a direct result of the increase in markets and year around availability of produce, cheeses, meats, and an increasing variety of specialty foods.
Many of the 'in season' markets have closed or are closing around thanksgiving. Finding local food involves a little more effort but isn't very challenging.
I work near Boston's Downtown Crossing neighborhood, and the holiday market runs everyday from November 26 through December 24th. Last year it featured a local orchard, root vegetable, honey, baked goods & local free range meat. Also open everyday until about Christmas time is Allandale Farm which transitions to holiday related stuff but features a variety of local produce from their farm and from around southern New England, as well as local specialty foods.
The Somerville Winter Farmer Market is already open as of this Saturday, and stays open each Saturday from 9:30 - 2:30 all the way until May 26th, making it the longest running. Last year it featured a huge variety of specialty foods, as well as root veggies and storage crops. I look forward to visiting soon.
Along with Somerville I was also a regular visitor to the Wayland Winter Farmers Market at Russell's Garden Center, which runs each Saturday from 10 - 2 from Jan 7 through early spring. This place had fresh baked goods, bagels, an orchard, multiple farms, specialty food producers, meat, and much more. Probably my favorite though it is a little out of the way it's well worth the trip.
New this year is the SoWa Winter Farmers Market which opens this Sunday, November 20th through April 29th and runs s from 10 - 2 each Sunday. It will feature produce, live plants, baked goods, herbs, free range meats, cheese, organic coffee, art, crafts, and more!
If those options aren't enough, and I am a little west of town there is the Natick Winter Market which is open Saturdays from 9 - 1 Jan 7th through April 28th.
All of these options are under 20 miles from where Gail and I live, and may require some planing to visit, but really aren't out of the way. I can't wait to share all the great market finds throughout the winter!!
Do you have any winter market favorites??