Melons, mangoes at the Farmers Market


By Katrina Bush - For the Record-Herald



Every so often, someone at the Fayette County Farmers Market will mention “mangoes,” as in “do you have red mangoes or only green ones?” or “I’m looking for mangoes; do you know if anyone is selling them?” For a few moments I am puzzled. When I think of mangoes, I think first of the Asian fruit which I love but seldom have and which my sister-in-law uses to make a fabulous ice cream alternative for my dairy allergic niece.

Not until I came to Fayette County did I ever hear what I call sweet peppers referred to as mangoes. Talking to fellow vendors and customers last week, I asked about this phenomena, and while most called sweet peppers, “peppers,” many were familiar with someone, usually an older relative, calling them mangoes.

I was not the first to wonder about this, because it took no time at all to find several articles about “green pepper mango” references. Apparently, this use of mangoes occurs primarily in Indiana, Illinois and Ohio and is somewhat generational. Amelia Friedline, has an entertaining blog (https://www.thepacker.com/article/great-green-pepper-mango-mystery, December 2018) which includes a video taped interview with her grandfather and this quotation from Wikipedia:

“When mangoes were first imported to the American colonies in the 17th century, they had to be pickled due to lack of refrigeration. Other fruits were also pickled and came to be called ‘mangoes,” especially bell peppers, and by the 18th century, the word ‘mango’ became a verb meaning ‘to pickle.’” Okay….somewhere, mango may be used to mean “to pickle,” but that is not the local meaning.

August could easily be celebrated for pickling given the many fruits and vegetables available that are excellent pickled and preserved – okra, green beans, garlic, pears, peppers, peaches, cucumbers and corn, to name just a few. Watermelon pickles are an old time food, which seem to be gaining a new following of young preservers. Watermelons are in season, and after you eat the delicious flesh, you can use the white part of the rind to make the “pickle.” The recipes are diverse in terms of what spices are used.

In honor of Labor Day, the market’s short shoppers will assemble and decorate an American flag on a wooden skewer with glitter stickers. And the “community guest” will be Lisa and Ashley providing information on “Boutique on Main.”

The following list contains the names and products of the vendors that expect to set up this Saturday in downtown Washington C.H. Other vendors may participate as well.

Cozy Baby Blessings (Nancy Cutter): Handmade baby essentials including, crocheted baby blankets, hats and booties. Flannel receiving blankets, burp cloths, bibs and bunny ear teething rings, as well as pink ribbon heart wreaths and crocheted pot scrubbers.

DeBruin Family Dairy (Tori & Toni DeBruin): Butter buns, wildflower cards, chocolate chip cookies, organic butter.

Donaldson Workshop (Roger Donaldson): Wooden spoons, cutting boards, wooden sandwich trays, and walnut spatulas.

Enchanting Acres (Amber Harris): tomatoes, beans, okra, peppers, garlic (mild and spicy, individual and discount bags).

Engedi (Beth Day, Alana Walters, Janet Bick): Assorted home baked goods (cinnamon rolls, bread, yeast rolls, cookies, pies), as well as a children’s activity.

Featherstone Apothecary (Sylvia Call): natural soaps, skincare items, beeswax food wraps, and dog items.

Gerhardts (Kevin Gerhardt): super sweet white corn, Crenshaw melons, cantaloupe, honeydew, seeded and seedless watermelons.

Greens & Greenery (Katrina Bush): Beeswax hand creams and lip balms with essential oils (new scents available) and natural insect repellent. Seasonal produce grown with organic practices– yellow onions, leeks, tomatillos, cherry tomatoes, carrots, German Butterball potatoes, sweet peppers, green beans, sweet potatoes. Sacred (holy) basil (tea). Dried catnip. Buckeye candies, peanut butter & chocolate fudge, mini-pecan pies.

Jones Farm Fresh Produce (Jon & Taylor Jones): Green beans, red potatoes, cucumbers, squash, bell peppers, onions, tomatoes, garlic, apples, eggs, chicken- patties, wings, chicken breast, cheddar chicken bratwurst, chorizo links, ground chicken, pork- sausage, maple links, pork chops, beef- ground and patties, turkey- drums, wings and ground.

Kelsie’s K-9 Creations (Jennifer Anderson): Limited ingredient, purposeful cookies and treats for dogs.

King Farms (Jeff & Sandi King): white sweet corn, melons, honey dew, Crenshaw, watermelon, green beans, vine ripe orange and red tomatoes, Yukon Gold potatoes, yellow squash, zucchini, beets.

Margaret’s Memories (Sharon Fulkerson): Aprons, hand made socks, baby hats, quilts, fingerless mittens, felted bags, towels and wash cloths, dryer balls.

Persinger Produce & Cottage Foods (David Persinger and Julie Mosny): The Jam Man will have assorted jams & jellies including seedless blackberry, a spiced tomato jam, ELDERBERRY jelly, and assorted Texas sheet cakes including white almond sheet cake. The Pie Lady will have local honey, pies (cherry, peach, apple, blackberry, blueberry and strawberry), pumpkin cookies, chocolate chip cookies, buns bars, mini cinni’s and cinnamon rolls.

Super Sport Grubb Hubb, (Kyler Kelley & Marc Grubb): Serving ultimate breakfast burritos in triple threat pancakes.

Wood Designed by DW (Debbie Welch): Handmade, unusual wood crafts. Hand made crocheted dishtowels, clothes, potholders, pocket books and baby booties. Special orders welcome. Cookies, fudge.

Your Other Mother’s Kitchen (Don & Sara Creamer): Artisan breads, whole wheat brownie tarts, bran muffin tops, and cranberry scones.

Bridge View Garden (Hunter & Lorelle Rohrer): Mums and seasonal produce including red raspberries, cherry tomatoes, green beans and red potatoes.

By Thy Hand (Mark and Lori Chrisman): Angel food cakes, specialty breads, pies, cookies, dip mixes, noodles.

Chilcote Farm (Bruce & Marlene Chilcote): Honey, hickory nut cake, white and chocolate sheet cakes, and cookies.

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By Katrina Bush

For the Record-Herald