• Updated Website Address: LocalBanquet.org
  • Looking Back on a Decade of Maple Innovation
  • Listening to Farmers’ Voices in the Ecosystem Services Discussion
  • Updated Website Address: LocalBanquet.org

    We've changed our website. Please update your bookmarks to LocalBanquet.org LocalBanquet.org is where you will now find the latest Local Banquet stories, a new Story of the Day update feature, features from the archives, and information on how to contribute to Local Banquet if you're interested in writing about Vermont agriculture. 

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  • Looking Back on a Decade of Maple Innovation

    Back in 2007, Local Baquet ran an article by Bonnie Hudspeth on maple innovation and production in Vermont. Since then, maple production in Vermont has tripled to 1.8 million gallons a year and innovation seems to have entered a new golden (or perhaps amber) age. We did a quick maple innovation news round up for 2018 / 2019 to help everyone keep up with the some of the trends. 

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  • Listening to Farmers’ Voices in the Ecosystem Services Discussion

    In 2015, the USDA funded a project for UVM researchers to engage in discussions with Vermont farmers about the idea of being paid for ecosystem services. Ecosystem services are things farmers do that improve the environment for everyone, a common example is grass-based farms capturing carbon in the soil as a way to combat climate change. Some services happen naturally through sustainable farming, others take more of an incentive to implement, and either way some policy makers believe that farmers shoudl be compensated for their contribution. 

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Pumpkin Tarts

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Pumpkin Tarts

These festive treats are delicate to handle and are surprisingly healthy for a dessert that has a custard-like filling and a tart-style crust. Serve them with a dollop of local whipped cream on top. Original recipe by Raechel Barone, On The Rise Bakery in Richmond, VT.


  • 2 cups cornmeal
  • 2 cups buckwheat flour
  • 1 cup melted butter
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 2 cups pumpkin
  • ¾ tsp. baking soda
  • 1 ½ cups half and half
  • ¾ cup maple syrup
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 ½ tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tbs. ginger
  • 3 eggs lightly beaten



Combine cornmeal, buckwheat flour, butter, and maple syrup well and press into an oiled muffin tin so that the crust is about ½ thick on the bottom and around the sides of each muffin cup. (Form the crusts about ¾ of the way up the sides.)


Whisk pumpkin, half and half, maple syrup, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and eggs together in a pitcher and pour into crusts. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes, then turn the oven down to 350 degrees for 15–20 more minutes. Remove when filling has set and begins to brown.

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Our stories, interviews, and essays reveal how Vermont residents are building their local food systems, how farmers are faring in a time of great opportunity and challenge, and how Vermont’s agricultural landscape ties into larger questions of sustainability and the future of our food supply.