Thanks to everyone who came to see us on Saturday at the Chicago Nettelhorst French Market! We had a great first day at the market and learned a lot. We really enjoyed the direct interaction with customers and getting feedback on the products, something we don’t usually experience thru the online store. It was a great opportunity to spread the word about our business and meet lots of new people. And of course, we also sold some products while we were at it!
When we woke up in the morning (bright & early), the forecast called for a chance of storms and a very hot day. Luckily, the storms and heat held off and we only had a few sprinkles! This market is located in the heart of the Lakeview East neighborhood, just north of Belmont on Broadway. The market has a wonderful community feel and many customers inquired if we would be back the next week. We will be back at this market, but not until August 24th & September 7th.
This Saturday (June 29th) we will have a booth at the Wheaton French Market. This market is very well attended and will likely be a very different experience for us. I'm glad we started with the Nettelhorst market as it was a great learning opportunity and helped to give us an idea of what to expect at Wheaton.
(Sorry this photo is blurry, but I wanted to show the awesome utensil display
that Kryz & Kaleb came up with!)
We will also have a booth at the French Connection Day at Cantigny on Sunday, August 11. This past weekend was a great test market for Stone Creek Trading, and we are hoping to add more dates throughout the summer. If you know of a market you would like to see us at, please send us an email or leave a comment below. We are always looking for ways to get our products out to more people!
If you didn't get a chance to come check out our products in Chicago, we would love to see you this weekend in Wheaton!
PS. You'll notice in the above photos of our booth from this weekend a number of new products that haven't made it onto the website yet. We are working hard to get them up, but preparing for the market has taken most of our time recently. You can use this post as a sneak peak of the new products! However, some of the toys you see here won't make it onto the website at all - we had such a great response at the market that we either sold out or have too low of inventory now to sell them online. If there is a particular item you see in the photos that doesn't make it onto the website, be sure to let us know! We are always looking for feedback on what products people are most interested in!
We are excited to announce that we will have a booth on Saturday, June 22 at the Chicago Nettelhorst French Market! For those in the Chicago area, this is the prefect opportunity for you to come see our products in person and make a purchase without having to pay for shipping. We will be able to accept credit cards at the market, so you don't have to worry about whether you have enough cash on hand to buy all the amazing products we offer!
The Chicago Nettelhorst French Market is run by the same organization that operates the very popular Wheaton French Market and has been open since 2003. The market takes place at the Nettelhorst school in the heart of the Lakeview East neighborhood of Chicago, near Broadway & Melrose.
A french market is very similar to a farmer's market, except that in addition to the usual fresh produce there are also goods for sale - like our housewares and toys! We feel that this venue is a great match for Stone Creek Trading as our products align with the natural lifestyle many market attendees desire. After you choose your fresh produce at the market, you will be able to purchase our kitchenware and fermenting crocks to turn those ingredients into delicious foods!
We will also be at this market location in August and are looking to add dates at other markets as well. So stay tuned to the blog and our Facebook page for future announcements!
We hope to see you there!
PS. Those who attend will also get a sneak peak at all the new products that haven't made it onto the website yet! So be sure to stop by if you can!
The art of fermentation is filled with nuances. From how much water & salt to add, to what type of vegetables you use, to the temperature of the space you are fermenting in - so many different variables that lead to different results. Each batch you ferment will be different, and experimenting with these options is part of the fun!
But for someone just starting out, all the variables of fermentation can be quite overwhelming. That's exactly why we include a recipe for both sauerkraut and pickles with every fermentation crock we sell. But beyond recipes, there are many fermentation tips and tricks that help make the process easier, which we hope to cover here on the blog!
So to get things started, our first tip is specifically for the type of fermenting pots that we sell. Our fermentation crocks feature a water seal air lock to allow air to escape without letting bad bacteria in. However, the seal only works when the groove is filled with water.
Over the weeks it takes to ferment sauerkraut, it is normal for the water in the seal to evaporate. Depending on the climate (humid or dry), you may need to refill groove every few days to once a week. In order to slow down the evaporation process, we suggest pouring a small amount of cooking oil on top of the water. The oil should cover the surface of the water, thereby creating a barrier that the water can't evaporate thru! You should still check the water periodically to ensure its not evaporating, but the oil will slow down the process.
We hope you'll try out this trick and would love to hear how it works for you. Do you have any other fermenting tips or tricks to share? Or maybe you have a stumbling block that you'd love to have us address? Please share in the comments!
Fermentation has been getting a lot of great press lately. Check out this link for a great piece from NPR on the advantages of fermented food. -
"It's delicious, it's nutritious and it's basically rotten. Fermentation is a hot culinary trend, and, as Weekend Edition food commentator Bonny Wolf explains, the preservation process gives food a flavor unique to time and place."
There are so many wonderful health benefits from eating fermented foods - not to mention just enjoying the wonderful flavors! If you're ready to start fermenting for yourself, be sure to check out our fermenting crocks.
We're just getting things started around here. We hope you'll take some time to look through our products as we are sure you will find something you love! Check back often for product updates and promotions as well as recipes and tips & tricks for using our products.
Thanks for stopping by!
Emily & Kryz