Let us give you a “pita” our mind on how to use all this great summer produce. 🙂
This week Squirrel is going nuts over organic red and yellow onions by Hidden Valley Farm*, organic eggplant by Rippling Brook Farm*, sweet banana peppers by Orton’s Fruit Market and new Wild for Salmon smoked salmon spread!
Learn more about Wild For Salmon in the new producer spotlight below and check out our recipe corner for some brain food on what to do with it.
*producers with Clarion River Organics Co-op
New Producer Spotlight: Wild for Salmon
You may be wondering how salmon caught in Alaska has managed to land in our freezer. We have been jumping for a chance to get some fish in our freezers so when the folks at Wild for Salmon, a family business located in Bloomsburg, PA, (200 miles from Edinboro), reached out to talk about their sustainably-harvested Sockeye Salmon and seafood products, it started us thinking about how we could/should define ‘local’. Several of Wild for Salmon’s products, like the salmon dips we now carry, are processed in PA and include local ingredients like horseradish and herbs. We think that falls within our mission of supporting local food businesses.
Stay tuned for more on definitions of local and which ones might best support the regional food system in a future Food for Thought column.
New Producer Spotlight: Mary Jo Haranin
Now introducing: Edinboro’s very own Mary Jo Haranin as one of our latest artisan producers. Haranin is a mixed-media painter, utilizing watercolors and pastels in her work. She splits her time between Edinboro and Arizona, and her unique bird portraits are inspired by photos taken by her son Brett. If you’re an Edinboro native, you may have seen her work on a street sign post in Lakeside!
Flowers for Thought:
A Trip to Windy Acres Farm and Garden
This week, we are sharing some “flowers for thought” as we recently had the opportunity to visit Windy Acres Farm and Garden in Wattsburg, PA. Windy Acres is the family flower business run by Katie Scarabino and her daughter, Camille Flinn, that has been supplying Edinboro Market with colorful arrangements of various sizes.
“It’s not all flowers, all the time,” Katie remarked as we walked through beds of flowering plants in various stages of growing, budding, and blooming. With about 10 acres in cultivation, Katie has quite the array of flowers considering she only started Windy Acres at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020.
As the world went on pause that spring, Katie ended up being laid off from her full-time nursing job. So, like many others faced with nowhere else to go but the backyard, Katie turned to her garden. Being raised on a farm taught her the basics of growing plants and she kept a small veggie garden for years. But as she found herself filling her yard with flowers, an idea sparked: perhaps this budding hobby could bring in some extra cash.
When asked, “Why grow flowers?” Katie responded that she loves everything from the growing process to seeing what people create with the flowers she grows. She sells mainly to two florists in the area and noted that there is a growing florist network in Northwest PA. Locally-grown flowers means higher-quality, longer-lasting bouquets with less of an ecological footprint, and more opportunity for collaboration among growers. They see each other as community—not competition— which allows them to exchange just the right flowers for their arrangements, whether they’re for a baby shower, wedding, or catered event.
Cut flowers can often hold special memories. Katie mentioned that peonies are her favorite flower as they remind her of her grandmother and the “2 long rows of peonies she grew along her driveway.” She recalls her grandmother making bouquets for her church during the growing season and how that made her appreciate the gesture of sharing floral arrangements.
Throughout our tour, it became apparent how some extra time and space to let your passions surface can nurture opportunities to connect with others, and maybe bloom into a successful business. Thanks Katie, for sharing your story and letting us see the farm and garden behind the flowers!
Curtis at the Boro Sweet Spot has fired up pita production once again, and we have some ideas on how we like to eat them. Try one of our suggestions or share your favorite the next time you’re in!
Featured (top): Salmon Pita with all the above-mentioned fixings.
(Bottom): Hummus and Veggie pita made with Beelzebub’s sweet potato hummus, feta cheese from Cherish Creamery, Clarion River Organics sungold cherry tomatoes, and Live and Learn Farms’ violas and summer savory.