Archive for June, 2014

Earlier this week I presented a couple of posts about my day out last weekend in Tamworth, NH – mostly at the charming Tamworth Farmers Market. Today, for my Friday Finds, I wrap up my visit with some final finds and observations.

FF: The African Market Baskets of Bolga Baskets International

TFM.5On sale at the Tamworth Farmers Market, although not quite local, was a nice collection of African Market Baskets from Bolga Baskets International.

About The African Market Baskets of Bolga Baskets International: “Bolga Baskets are all completely hand-woven and come in as many unique sizes, colors and patterns as they have household uses. From a gardening partner, to a grocery carrier; a picnic basket to the centerpiece of a fine living room, Bolga Baskets’ uses are limited only by your imagination. Funky yet stylish . . . Both modern and timeless . . . let Bolga Baskets International help you find the perfect baskets for your lifestyle!”

See more about all the African Baskets of Bolga Baskets International here.

FF: Big Love Mexican Diner

BLDOne of the best things about returning to New Hampshire and the Tamworth Farmers Market in particular, was the opportunity to check in on some old friends. I was very pleased to see the fine folks of Big Love Mexican Diner on hand.

Big Love Mexican Diner serves up some of the best burritos and related Mexican fare from their cool food truck – all sourced from locally grown produce, meat and cheeses.

Seriously, their stuff is the best.


Check out Big Love Mexican Diner here.

FF: Hobbes Tavern & Brewing Co.

HOBBSMeanwhile, just a couple of country miles down the road from Tamworth in West Ossipee, NH is the brand spanking new Hobbes Tavern & Brewing Co. – and it is fabulous.

Billed as “an idyllic countryside tavern and brew house offering warmth, history, classic comfort food, and handcrafted beer at the foot of the New Hampshire White Mountains”Hobbes Tavern & Brewing Co. is one of the most pleasant restaurant atmospheres I have experienced in a long time and the food is amazing.

And it’s in Ossipee. NH!

See more about Hobbes Tavern & Brewing Co. here.

FF: Tamworth Distilling & Mercantile

DISTFinally, while visiting Tamworth Village, NH I was thrilled to see the progress being made on the renovation of – or really the transformation of – the historic Tamworth Inn into Tamworth Distilling & Mercantile. I am pleased to say it is coming along nicely.

Sure, as soon as I move away a distillery opens in my former backyard…

Follow the progress of Tamworth Distilling & Mercantile here.

Continuing my review of my visit to the lovely Farmers’ Market in Tamworth, NH last Saturday, I am pleased to present a few of the vendors I found there…

TFM.7…first, the fine folks from Sap House Meadery based in Center Ossipee, NH.

About Sap House Meadery: “Sap House Meadery is a small producer of premium, hand-crafted meads (honey wines). The Meadery was founded in 2010 by two young entrepreneurs, Ash Fischbein and Matt Trahan. Together they rejuvenated an old store front in downtown Center Ossipee, New Hampshire using many recycled materials and sustainable methods. Sap House Meads use only time-tested traditional methods and procure ingredients from local farms and markets. The signature of Sap House Meadery is its use of pure New Hampshire maple syrup in many of its meads. In some, such as the Hopped Blueberry or Cranberry Sage, it is used to add complexity. In the Sugar Maple however, it is the main ingredient with nearly half the fermentable sugars coming from maple syrup.”

I love Sap House Meadery’s Vanilla Bean Mead.

Learn more about Sap House Meadery here.

TFM.4I was also happy to find Kearsarge Mountain Soap at the market. Mostly because their products smelled so good and I was able to appreciate them even though my head was all stuffed up due to seasonal allergies.

About Kearsarge Mountain Soap: “We feature over one hundred products made right here at the base of Kearsarge Mountain in North Conway, a scenic little New Hampshire village in the heart of the Mount Washington Valley. Rich in vitamins and minerals, goat milk is a miracle of nature that cannot be synthetically reproduced. Soap made with milk has a pH close to your skin making it the most gentle you can use. Each Kearsarge Mountain soap is handmade, hand cut, and hand packaged. Each is an individual work of art, so no two are exactly the same.”

I just love anything made with goat’s milk.

Learn more about Kearsarge Mountain Soaps here.

I won’t say that I have neglected the old family estate back in New Hampshire (I have a great local caretaker who keeps the place in good shape) but on my trip home last weekend I was pleased to find one of the back fields had yielded to a sea of dandelions.  I love when weeds are beautiful…


JMAI have been a big fan of British chef Jamie Oliver for years. I used to watch his various television shows and always found him personable and his recipes and tips relatively easy to follow. And as an Anglophile, his “mockney” sensibility was always a plus for me.

I am also a big fan of Mr. Oliver’s books, which are always interesting and entertaining. I really like his spin on American cuisine as detailed in his book Jamie’s America: Easy Twists on Great American Classics, and More.

About Jamie’s America: Easy Twists on Great American Classics, and More by Jamie Oliver: “Jamie has long been fascinated by how vast and diverse America is, but his experience had been limited to only a few cities. All that changes with Jamie’s America. This was his chance to see it all, and he couldn’t wait to travel all over the country, in search of recipe gems buried in Americans’ own backyards. As he says: ‘I wanted to get to the heart of great American food…I set off on what I knew would be a completely inspiring trip. I wasn’t wrong…From New York to New Orleans, the energy of Los Angeles to the big skies of Wyoming, I found what I was looking for: Some of the most diverse and delicious recipes I’ve ever come across!’”

Like Alexis de Tocqueville before him, Jamie Oliver’s travels across America helps us see our very own country (and what we like to eat) in a new way through the eyes of a visitor – and it is a revelation.

Jamie’s America: Easy Twists on Great American Classics, and More by Jamie Oliver is available from Amazon and other fine booksellers.

…my back yard here in Kansas seems to be a feeding ground for all sorts of critters.  But for some reason it are the rabbits that appear to like it the most.  Here are a couple of bunny friends who have been dining on my weeds recently:


Last weekend on my visit back to New Hampshire – I stumbled upon the neighbor’s chickens (and a handsome rooster) snacking on the back forty of the old estate.


TFM.3I made it back to my native New Hampshire this past weekend for a quick trip to deal with a few items at the old family homestead. Although the trip was mostly “business” – I was able to squeeze in a few hours of visiting some of my favorite places in good old Carroll County, New Hampshire.

First, I was pleased to stop in at the fabulous Tamworth Farmers’ Market – which is just a total delight from one end to the other. The market is held every Saturday morning in season in the charming Village of Tamworth, NH.

Among the charms of the Tamworth Market is that it is home to many truly local vendors selling their wares. You can get just about everything you need for a great meal at this market all originating from within a few miles of this lovely village. You can choose some fresh meat from local farms, cheese made from local goats, breads made with native New Hampshire wheat, and of course all the in-season produce you can gather.

TFM.1Over the next few days I am going to post about a few of the nice finds from my visit to the market – but none as cool as today’s feature: this cute young lad who was set up selling lucky rocks for a quarter.

This budding entrepreneur carefully accepted the challenge to find the particular rock that was most lucky for my sister (my companion at the market) and for me, and he was a total delight.


The Tamworth Farmers is held on the corner of Rt. 113 and Main St. every Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. the awesome place known as Tamworth Village, NH USA.

FALLENI really love the whole premise of Fallen Industry:

“Fallen trees, knocked down by industrial growth, reclaimed & reborn with beautiful purpose.”

Yep, the fine folks at Fallen Industry take the wood of fallen trees and turn it into some of the finest pieces of handcrafted furniture you are apt to find anywhere.

About Fallen Industry: “Our wood materials are all from fallen trees. Trees that were cut down to make room for industrial growth. Trees that have lived their lives and have fallen naturally. Or trees that were about to fall and cause damage to homes. The trees come from all over the country, and as new and unique projects arise, we must search deeper to find the exact right shapes and species. After all, trees don’t always grow the precise way you want them to. The wood is milled, kiln-dried, planed, cut, joined, butterflied, sanded, finished with a hand-rubbed oil, sanded, oiled, sanded, oiled, sanded, oiled… Then we use several coats of a secret company glaze to protect the wood from any future damage.”

The pieces made by Fallen Industry are not just furniture, they are works of art rescued from nature.

Learn more about the great work of Fallen Industry and see all their fine products here.

NATGEOThere is something about flipping through vintage issues of National Geographic magazine that is comforting.

There is something timeless and universal about the magazine and its coverage of the world in which we live and have lived for the past century that is very cool.

The photography in National Geographic is amazing and they have been capturing glimpses of our world for decades. I was pleased to discover National Geographic’s “Flashback” feature on their website – which makes it easy to explore some vintage pictures from old issues of the magazine without the risk of mold spores.

About National Geographic’s Flashback: “Each month, National Geographic features a photograph from our archives in Flashback. Browse through the galleries of historical images for a view into our past.”

I can spend hours flipping through old National Geographic’s and clicking though the great images in their online gallery – and it is not a waste of time.

Check out National Geographic’s Flashback gallery online here.