Most summer people on Martha’s Vineyard hit the beach or troll the shops. Me? I hunt food.

I grab my market basket and a small cooler and whistle my dogs into our island car, my father-in-law’s 1986 baby blue Toyota Corolla, same year I graduated from college. Crank windows, cassette deck, no cup holders. I gleefully slide that matchbox into parking spaces half the size of an SUV.

Full disclosure: in my life off the Rock, I work on a farm in Vermont and live off what we grow, raise and process. So I take a busman’s holiday here to honor what Vineyard farmers coax and craft from the soil and water. Treasures unique to the Island. Mermaid Farm feta, a firm block of snowy whiteness floating in a salty brine. A bag of North Tabor Farm mixed greens, harvested small, dense and fork-friendly. Rebecca grows a special blend of peppery arugula, spicy mustards, pungent Asian greens. Shiitakes cultivated on oak logs by MV Mycological. From Menemsha Fish Market, a take-away tub of striped bass salad, refreshingly light with the zing of capers, lemon juice, and red onion, and a chunk of melt-in-my-mouth smoked bluefish. Brick-red spicy tuna spread from Martha’s Vineyard Smokehouse packs a surprising kick. A triumvirate of award-winning cheeses crafted at the Grey Barn. Succulent pork from Cleveland Farm, juicy pastured chicken from The Good Farm. I eat two pies a year, both from the Scottish Bakehouse, with buttery shortbread crust and whatever fruit combo is in season.

And what’s pie without ice cream? I recently discovered an unused, still in the box, Donvier ice cream maker in the cellar of our Vineyard Haven home and was transported back to my Silver Palate days. (The Vineyard always seems to bathe me in a 1980s time warp, when I started coming here right after college. A dependable flow of Grateful Dead, Allman Brothers, and Bob Marley on WMVY keeps me rooted in that carefree period of my life.) I cooked up a base of heavy cream, milk, eggs, and sugar and converted that into mint chocolate, studded with hand-chopped dark chocolate. Later in the week, I scored a few perfectly ripe peaches at a farm stand which inspired a chunky peach ice cream. For me, the joy of the Donvier is its unplugged simplicity — pour the creamy base into the frozen container, slide the paddle into place, and turn the crank a few times for about twenty minutes. An effortless sidebar activity while I prepared a supper of pan-roasted corn kernels, cherry tomatoes and seared scallops. Just another reason to seek a bottle of raw milk and local farm eggs.

Honey from Island Bee Company. — Ray Ewing

So while others head off to frolic in the waves or shop for new togs, my dogs and I roam the Island, sipping a coffee cradled between my legs (remember the no cup holder thing?) and listening to WMVY on my scratchy radio. We meander without a plan, stopping at farm stands, fish markets, and bakeries with wooden screen doors. The dogs know these excursions conclude with a romp at the ag fairgrounds, a reward for their patience and companionship.

And as we wander the open fields, I concoct my Vineyard-centric meals. Smoked bluefish flaked over a bed of mixed greens with a drizzle of lemon-infused mayo. Roast chicken with herbs from the garden and sautéed shiitakes. Grilled pork with roasted veggies. A platter of multicolored tomatoes and crumbled feta to accompany the striped bass salad.

The dessert’s a no brainer.

Maria Buteux Reade spends her dirty days at Someday Farm in Dorset, Vt., and clean days as a freelance writer for Edible Green Mountains and several other publications.