10 peach dishes you need to try now

Given that our ubiquitous state fruit has made its way onto our license plates and street signs on practically every corner, it should come as no surprise that local chefs are also tinkering with the Georgia peach in a number of creative ways.

Xocolatl to make single-origin, dual-ingredient chocolate

Matt Weyandt and Elaine Read always had traditional jobs. He worked on political campaigns, while she focused on international aid with the Peace Corps. In 2012, they packed up their two children—ages one and four—and moved to Costa Rica for a change of scenery and the chance for adventure. There, the husband-and-wife team met cacao growers and gradually learned how to grind the beans into chocolate. They decided to bring this pure, unadulterated, single-origin, two-ingredient delicacy back home to Atlanta. And Xocolatl was born.

Urban farmers now opting to rent, not buy, land

Even those with little to no agricultural know-how might assume, and reasonably so, that to be a farmer, you have to own land. Turns out, that’s not the case.

This month’s farmer’s market find: blackberries

Blackberries are about as common at markets this time of year as they are along roadsides, though the big, juicy berries that farmers grow are far more tempting. While many farmers maintain only a row of brambles, Ronnie Mathis of Mountain Earth Farms in Clarkesville has set aside an entire acre.

Urban beekeeping on the rise

If it seems that the buzz around bees has picked up volume, that’s because it has. According to the USDA, bees help pollinate one-third of all our food, but recently, a mysterious and destructive honeybee disease called Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) has been wiping out record numbers of hives across the U.S. Although CCD is a common phenomonom, scientists can't explain why it's increasing at such a devastating rate.

Doggy Dogg hot dog cart puts a local twist on the American staple

Think of the hot dog and visions of stadium concession stands and summer BBQs probably come to mind. But locally-grown, farm-fresh ingredients? Not so much. The humble American hot dog has a less-than-glowing reputation, notorious for a best-not-ask hodgepodge of add-ins and questionable sources. James Hammerl is trying to change that stigma. Since 2011, the creator and owner of the local hot dog cart, Doggy Dogg, has taken to the streets to push an American classic made using locally-produced meat, bread, and toppings.

Heirloom summer squash can add flair to your salad

Kaleidoscopic tomatoes pull focus when they begin appearing at farmers markets this season, but another vegetable-that’s-really-a-fruit also waits to be noticed: summer squash.

Queen of Cream launches frozen goodies cart in Atlanta

There’s a new queen in town. Cora Cotrim, affectionately nicknamed the Queen of Cream, has started an ice cream company of the same name and will be giving out samples like caramelized banana and coffee-donut this Saturday at Empire State South.

Cheesemonger Tim Gaddis to leave Star Provisions, heads to the farm

The monger is becoming the maker. Tim Gaddis, Star Provisions’ cheese oracle, is moving on to work for Many Fold Farm down in Palmetto, Georgia. This Friday will be his last day.

Sweet onions: A unique breed

You’ll never find a sweet Vidalia onion grown by an Atlanta-area farmer. Not technically, anyway. To be labeled a Vidalia, the onion—a hybrid known as yellow granex, developed to thrive in warmer climates—must be grown in a twenty-county area of southeast Georgia, which includes the city of Vidalia in Toombs County.

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