Saturday, April 3, 2010

My Farmer's Market Loot

I have been meaning to go to my local farmer's market for some time now, but have been too lazy until today.  The market is on Saturday mornings from 8 - 12, which is usually when I love to sleep!  Well, today I sucked it up and went because I am getting more and more angry with the food industry and I want to support local economy.  (Don't even get me started!  If you want to know more, I highly recommend reading "The Omnivore's Dilemma" by Michael Pollen.  Two friends of mine recommended it to me and I'm so glad they did.)

Here's some of the loot I picked up today (Ignore what's in the back.  That's just what was on my messy counter):

On the left, we have some local honey which I was very happy about since eating local honey is supposed to help with allergies.  (It helps you build antibodies to local allergens.)  I'm not eating honey myself these days (b/c of my no-sugar diet) but it's good for my hubby.  Behind the honey you can see a bag of pecans.  Then, some mustard greens, kale, cauliflower, carrots, sweet onions, strawberries, and butter.  Look how crazy those carrots are!  You can tell someone pulled them out of the ground.  To my delight, the butter is from a local, family-owned farm and was made from cream from cows who were grass-fed, NOT corn-fed.  (Meat and dairy from grass-fed cows are SO much better for you!)  My one food splurge was the strawberries.  I'm not supposed to have even fruit sugar and I haven't had fruit of any sort in months.  However, I decided that it's Easter and I'm not going to have Easter candy so some strawberries wouldn't be too bad, right?  Anyway, I had a few right after I took this picture and they are delicious!  When you don't eat sugar, fruit tastes like candy!

 Above are some dry goods I bought.  The rice cakes, tea, and almond butter are the same brands I have been buying at Whole Foods but it makes me happy that an actual person got the profits today instead of a big food conglomerate.  The bread is a treat for my husband who is less than thrilled with my gluten-free ways lately.  I satisfied both halves of his ethnicity by getting Kalamata olive bread and a hot-cross bun.  The buns were baked fresh this morning and Ted said it was the best ever.

And lastly, I splurged again and bought myself something girly.  I have been wanted an anklet for a long time now and they're hard to find.  Anyway, I bought this one directly from the woman who made it:
   
All in all, a successful trip!  It's really nice to buy things from the people who grow or make them.  These people can answer any questions you may have and are knowledgeable about their area.  The veggie and fruit growers can even help you pick out produce that's at the perfect ripeness based on when you're going to eat them.  (Today, the strawberry lady had special pints of them set aside if you were going to eat them today; then other batches for tomorrow and later in the week.)  All I can say is, eating things at the exact, perfect ripeness is an experience you don't want to miss out on.

Check out your local farmer's market and I think you'll enjoy it and you'll wonder (as I did) why you haven't been going all along.

11 comments:

  1. Jim and I used to go every weekend and I miss it so! Thanks for the memories :-)

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  2. It's great, isn't it? I definitely need to start going regularly.
    BTW - Thanks for telling me about "The Omnivore's Dilemma". It's life-changing!

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  3. Just ordered the book " The Omnivore's Delimma" and it is being downloaded onto my nook as we speak

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  4. Cool! Get ready to be seriously ticked off at the government and the food industry. :P

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  5. I see you have some swiss chard. Let me know if you want a recipe. Do you have a CSA (community-supported agriculture)? That's where you get periodic deliveries from a local farm (or group of farms). It's somewhat cheaper because you get whatever they have at that moment (great if you don't mind just finding recipes for new stuff and going with the flow). We get a box of produce once every 3 weeks and we also have a meat CSA here and get once a month delivery of grass-fed meat (goat, beef, chicken, lamb). It comes out to about $6/lb. It's a mix of ground, roasts and steaks.

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  6. That sounds awesome, Pauline! Some friends of ours in England have something similar. Unfortunately, I don't think we have CSA near where I live although I haven't checked it out in a few years. The last time I checked, I could have organic produce shipped from California but I thought that would defeat the purpose. ;-)
    (BTW - sure--what swiss chard recipes do you have? I usually just make a salad with it b/c I don't know what else to do.)

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  7. I separate the leaves from the stems and cut the stems into slices (like how you cut celery). Then roll up the leaves and cut rolls into slices (so that you end up with strips of leaf). Then I saute the stem slices with onion/shallots/garlic (any combo thereof). I saute in half olive oil and half butter but no reason you can't use all olive oil. When that mixture is softened and ready to eat, add leaf strips and saute those actively tossing them. They should saute rather than steam. It'll be ready when the leaves have softened slightly. Sometimes I deglaze the pan with wine before adding the leaf strips.
    I just added in some carrots last time I did this (add those at the beginning when you start sauteeing). It adds a nice sweetness.

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  8. Yum! Thanks, Pauline! That sounds really good.

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  9. you are lucky to be able to go to the farmer's markets. they don't open here until june.

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  10. I just found a CSA in Jacksonville...but may try the Farmers Market First. We have one here that is open 365 days/year

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  11. Really? Not until June? I guess I should be grateful. (...and here I was begin down on my town for not having a CSA.)
    Lyza - that's awesome! Let me know how it is. :-)

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