My wife encouraged this post. We have become hooked on our local farmers market. Held in a non-descript parking lot, what it lacks in ambiance it makes up for in quality and quantity. And there’s nothing better than shopping at the farmers market when you’re eating so many fruits and vegetables, as I am these days.
We love it for the farm fresh eggs and seasonal fruits and vegetables. Right now, there are all manners of berries and greens available. Fresh, in-season tomatoes become a meal in themselves. I just had some of the best green beans in my life. Later, we’ll buy fresh, gorgeous Washington State apples by the reusable bag full. If only it lasted longer than May through October!
The only drawback is that our market can be surprisingly expensive for many items. Part of this is mitigated by timely shopping. When blueberries are at their peak, a few dollars buys more than you can eat in a week. My other strategy is to supplement farmers market shopping with a trusted roadside stand. I am lucky to have a place on the way home from work that is a semi-permanent business in a “big tent” adjacent to the proprietor’s house. It’s run by a retired gentleman who buys fresh fruits and vegetables as a proxy for his loyal customers. It’s open more often and is quite a bit cheaper, too.
I’ll bet most of you are familiar with farmers markets and roadside stands. How do you shop them for the best food, the best deals, and all those other benefits of connecting more closely with those who grow your food?