Summer has seemed to quickly come and go and one of the things I will miss the most will be the trips to our local farmers market as it closes the end of this month until next spring. I wanted to share a few of this year’s highlights from our trips to our local farmer’s market. Our summer Saturdays usually start with pancakes and are followed with a trip to the market. When we buy our weekly produce at the farmers market we are guaranteed to have a delicious and diverse selection of fruits and veggies in our home. The market kicks off with late spring vegetables like asparagus and beets, then transitions to peas, beans and lettuces, kicks into high gear with tomatoes, corn, melons and berries, and finishes in fall with cabbages, squash and apples. My kids get to pick out some of our produce at the market each week and it helps them be adventurous eaters and connect with the farmers growing our food.
I like to scout out new vegetables and ask farmers about them. That’s the biggest advantage of the farmers market; personally meeting who grew your food. One week, a farmer had five different varieties of garlic for sale so I asked him which kind he would recommend for stir-fry. As it turns out, he was passionate about the different varieties of garlic and told me a little about each one. I left his stand with a bulb of strongly flavored stir-fry garlic, a mellow garlic for vinaigrettes, and a garlic bulb for roasting and putting on homemade pizza. Another time, a farmer helped me pick the right kind of apple for applesauce, pie, and fresh eating. If you see a vegetable or fruit you’re not familiar with, ask the person who grew it and they can tell you what it is and how to prepare it. Best of all, the farmers market always gives me a great feeling of community. We run into friends and teachers, meet farmers, get fantastic food advice, put our money back into our community, and leave with delicious, local food.
My girls are picking out a box of their favorite summer treat: raspberries!
In addition to being laid locally by free-range chickens, I think brown eggs are beautiful. The yolks of fresh eggs are nearly orange and I find them to have a more rich taste.
My son picking out blueberries at the farmers market. We like to give him a $5 farmers market coin and let him make the decision about how it’s spent. Then our farmers market trip doubles as a micro economics lesson as well.
This year at our farmers market a new stand opened up that makes fresh fries. My kids love watching as a fresh potato gets washed, sliced, fried and served right in front of them.
The resulting basket of fresh, delicious, piping hot garlic fries. They quickly become one of our favorite Saturday treats.
The girls used their $5 farmers market coin to buy some fresh pressed apple cider. It’s cool, crisp taste is perfectly refreshing on a hot summer day.
Beautiful broccoli is one of my all-time favorite vegetables. When I buy it in season at the farmers market I love to make fresh broccoli salads with it that highlight its robust flavor.