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Intoxicating peaches, market news and farm happenings

Posted 7/13/2017 9:50pm by Leslie Cooperband or Wes Jarrell.

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Farm News

The aroma of peaches in the orchard is intoxicating. The yellow globes with red blush dangle from the trees, in stark contrast to the green leaves that surround them.  Their vibrancy draws you to them, where the smell of peachness compels you to cup them in your hand and give them a gentle squeeze. If the flesh gives way, and a simple twist of the stem releases them from the branch, you know you have a dead-ripe peach in your palm.  A force overcomes you, and you bite into the soft yellow flesh. You’re overcome by the sweet-tart and slightly floral pulp and the sticky sensation of juice dripping down your sweat-soaked chin.  The sultry days of July bring us tree-ripened peaches, and we are forced to remember why we started this farm in the first place.


I am not sure who decided millennia ago that the apple was the consummate forbidden fruit. I’m convinced they never had the experience of sinking their teeth into a perfectly ripe peach, warmed by the hot summer sun.  They cast a spell on you like no other fruit. They make you forgive the occasional insect that might be lurking in the pit (damn oriental fruit moth) or the fact that you’re drenched in sweat just walking from tree to tree, breathing in the peach perfume. 

Farmers’ Market News

This weekend, we’re attending both Urbana’s Market at the Square and Chicago’s Green City Market.The weather should be substantially cooler than it has been, but that just means that your appetite is back, and you’ll definitely want to eat more cheese! With all the great veggies and fruits in season at the markets, it’s so easy to pair our cheeses with your favorite seasonal produce: tomatoes, berries, peaches and summer squash and cucumbers; use your imagination.

  • Fresh chevre: plain, herbs de Provence, cracked pepper
  • Raw-milk Feta: Packed in whey brine for flavor and preservation, this cheese is perfect for salads or roasted veggies.
  • Angel Food: our little compact bloomy rind—firm paste, mushroomy rind.  Very limited availability this week at the Urbana Market only (sorry GCM folks)
  • Little Bloom on the Prairie: our goat milk camembert
  • Black Goat: our ash-coated bloomy with a hint of yeast on the rind; don’t let the funky molds scare you away from tasting this cheese. 
  • Magia Negra: our nod to a Manchego style cheese, sharp nutty notes with hints of tart berries. Rind is rubbed with an olive oil-black currant & aronia berry paste. 
  • Moonglo: our first spring batches are finally ready for prime time.  The flavor is grassy and slightly tart compared with their fall-milk cousins. In addition to the picture perfect wedges, we’ll be selling some discounted wedges that have some rind imperfections (Urban Market only).  These are strictly cosmetic cracks that occurred when we had some temperature fluctuations in our aging room this spring.
  • Huckleberry Blue: the last of the raw-goat-milk blue made last December. This cheese is creamy, sweet & salty—the most flavorful blue in central IL.
  • Whole milk Yogurt: plain and simple—goat milk and live cultures (no thickeners, no sugar, just pure goodness (Green City Market only)

We will have local grains crackers for you to accompany those cheeses at both markets- blue corn-chevre, oat chevre, semolina lavender and herbed flatbread.

With the start of peach season at the farm, we just had to make a few batches of our “Peaches & Cream” Gelato. It’s divine. Don’t forget to grab a pint or two of gelato this Saturday (*indicates flavors that will be available at both the Urbana Market and Green City Market):

peaches n cream

  • Peaches & Cream
  • Maple Chevre: made with our goat cheese and “Sticky Pete’s maple syrup from Athens OH*
  •  Red Currant Sorbetto (this tart dairy-free option tastes as beautiful as it looks)*
  • Lemon Balm-straight from our herb garden
  • Vanilla
  • Chocolate
  • Hazelnut
  • Salted Caramel Swirl*
  • Mexican Coffee (cinnamon and a hint of cayenne take this flavor into the stratosphere)
  • Strawberry (Green City Market only)  
  • Red Currant-Aronia Berry (Green City Market only)  
  • Blueberry-Lemon Balm (Green City Market only)  

CU Farmers: Online Farmers Market with two outdoor pick up locations; weekly ordering opens Friday (7/14) at 8:00 AM through Monday, 7/17, 10 PM)

If you’re not able to make to the market on Saturday, consider CU Farmers. Blue Moon Farm, Bane Family Meats and Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery have teamed up to offer the CU Community an online farmers’ market.  It is simple, convenient and comprehensive (veggies, meats, eggs, cheese and gelato).  You won’t find a better deal on some of the highest quality local foods around.  

Farm Happenings Farm Summer Hours:  

Our week-day hours are a great way to visit the farm when there aren’t lots of people here.  Take in the tranquility of the landscape and enjoy a scoop of gelato on the patio. The goats love visitors all the time, any time. U Pick Peach Season will start next week (either Wednesday or Friday-will let folks know on Monday next week). Open hours are:

  • Wednesdays, 3-6 PM
  • Fridays, 11 AM to 6 PM
  • Saturdays and Sundays, 1-4 PM

Don't forget to follow directions to the farm from our website. This will ensure easy travels during the road construction on N. Lincoln Avenue.

Farm Dinner Updates Chef Raquel Ritz will be frying up some delicious fish (Asian Carp) for our “Invasion of the Fish and Chips” Dinner on July 22nd).  This is going to a fish fry like no other! Asian Carp is NOT carp; these unusual fresh-water fish swim vertically in the water column eating algae. Their flesh is delicate and quite mild.  Help us prevent this invasive species from entering Lake Michigan by eating them!

While you’re at it, check out the other dates and themes. We still have seats available for both seatings of the Cubano Brunch on Sunday, August 13th and the Summer Vegetarian Dinner on Saturday, August 19th.     

Girls Pint Out and Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery team up for a cheese and beer night-Tuesday, July 18th

Join us for a celebration of two of the best things ever invented – cheese and beer! Champaign-Urbana Girls Pint Out, the local chapter of the national non-profit organization Girls Pint Out, Inc., is hosting a cheese and beer pairing event for women who love craft beer and who want to be an active, contributing part of the greater craft beer community.  Ticket sales close on Sunday, July 16th, so don’t delay.   

This event will feature an array of cheeses, including some locally made goat cheese straight from the farm, paired with a variety of craft beers from our community, including local favorites like Triptych, Riggs, JT Walkers, White Oaks, Blind Pig, and Destihl. You can buy tickets online at http://goatfarmandbeer.brownpapertickets.com/. For more info about the local chapter of Girls Pint out: http://www.facebook.com/ChampaignUrbanaGPO

Copyright 2017. Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery, LLC. 2017. All rights reserved. 4410 N. Lincoln Ave., Champaign, Illinois 61822 Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery, LLC is responsible for the content of this email. Please contact Leslie Cooperband or Wes Jarrell with any inquiries.