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TRUMANSBURG, NY — Like many other T-burg residents, Atlas Bowl’s Chef Brittany Loughlin pays a visit to the Trumansburg Farmers Market every Wednesday. At around 4 p.m., she emerges from Atlas’ kitchen and sets off across the restaurant’s parking lot to the Village Park, wicker basket in hand.

Chef Brit from @atlasbowl heads to the Trumansburg Farmers Market to scope out the scene for the #locavore special. #localfood

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“Chef Brit” is shopping for the restaurant rather than herself, however, looking to create a limited-run special for the evening with her farmers market finds. She has two hours to shop around and then prepare a dish showcasing the locally-sourced food available that day. The Wednesday special runs the whole length of the summer market, from May through October.

Each week, she said, is a bit of a gamble.

“You have no idea what vendors are going to be there,” Loughlin said. “Sometimes you go over and there are only like two food vendors of raw goods.”

Purple asparagus from #threestonefarm went into the #locavore special @atlasbowl last week. #eatdrinkbowl

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We joined her the first Wednesday in June, the sky threatening rain. Her method is to comb the market twice, once to get a lay of the land, and the second time to make purchases.

It’s still early in the growing season, and paired with the gloomy weather, the market is sparsely populated. After her first pass, Chef Brit decided on a pasta dish with conchiglie (shells) from Wide Awake Bakery, paired with a combination of mild Italian sausage and chorizo from Wixom Farms, adding a not-too-spicy kick.

The downpour began as we searched for greens to sautée. At Thalli’s booth, Chef Brit chatted with foraging experts Edward and Avery about what might complement the sausage. After sampling honey-sweet black locust flowers, we settled on vetch (wild pea shoots) and broad-leaved dock for their textures.

In the pouring rain last week, Chef Brit and I made a quick nip over to #birdskogfarm for kale and polenta. #locavore

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With the clock ticking, Chef Brit made two more quick pick-ups: amazingly fat purple asparagus from Three Stone Farm, and finally kale from Birdskog Farm (plus one more batch of Farmer Ground Polenta for another special.)

Racing back through the rain, Chef Brit took a pit-stop to take photos of her haul before whisking off to the kitchen.

Getting meta last week: snapping a photo of Chef Brit snapping an #insta photo @atlasbowl #locavore #localfood #eatdrinkbowl

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“I have to very quickly prepare this, write a description, figure out food cost, how many portions I have, write it all down for the staff. This is the part that gets stressful,” Loughlin said. “What’s cool though is that I ran a pasta special yesterday with locally-foraged ramps, so I have a ramp Alfredo all ready.”

The next hour was a blur of chatter, cleaning, chopping and clattering pans.

To the kitchen! Chef Brit slices up #wixomfarms sausage for the #locavore special last week #localfood #eatdrinkbowl #trumansburg

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Putting the finishing touches on last week’s #locavore special @atlasbowl

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Stop by Atlas Bowl any Wednesday from through October 25 after 6 p.m. to try and snag a locavore special.

Atlas Bowl

61 W Main St Trumansburg, NY |14886 | (607) 387-3191 Located just minutes from Taughannock Falls,  Atlas is the perfect social dining destination, complete with elevated comfort food for casual diners...