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Old 07-11-2015, 08:17 PM   #1  
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Default Do you have and use a Farmers Market?

Hubby and I did our regular Sat. morning farmers market run. Today was okra for roasting, peaches, pluots, strawberries, zucchini and red bell peppers for dinners and snacks. Oh and a honeydew that REALLY tastes like a honeydew!

It's become a Saturday ritual for us. We have coffee in the morning and discuss what we'll have for the week and plan the list. We have favorite vendors we visit and always manage to get lots of extra walking in without it feeling like a forced march. Its like a Saturday morning date

Do you have a use a regular farmers market? Any fave vendors or foods that you get on a regular basis?
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Old 07-13-2015, 04:49 PM   #2  
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Hubby and I love our local farmers markets. Our absolute favorite vendor is an elderly Hmong couple. The lady speaks little English and her hubby barely speaks at all. He and my hubby carry on entire conversations in pantomime and facial expressions (usually making fun of us ladies, and looking innocent when we turn to look).

As the couple is getting older, their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren (who, being born in the U.S., of course, speak English as well as anyone else born here) are taking over the booth. They're all great folks, but I kind of miss the language barrier with "grandma" and "grandpa."

Our favorite produce from them is the pea-sized baby potatoes.
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Old 07-13-2015, 10:06 PM   #3  
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I live in a relatively small city and we have a farmers market, but it is not very big. I don't really live in an area where walking everywhere is really feasible, but I can walk to the farmer's market! I go every saturday and the selection is getting better and better every week. The walk there is pretty easy- 1.1 mIles downhill, but the walk home uphill with a bag full of produce is much more challenging!
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Old 07-15-2015, 06:20 PM   #4  
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Hubby and I went today, and picked up

Pea-sized potatoes
Two bundles of kohlrabi (the second a freebie from our favorite vendor)
Flowering bok choy (looks kind of like a bouquet of weeds with tiny yellow flowers).
A large bag of green and red leaf lettuce
Snap peas
Snow peas
Beets
Diakon radish
Garlic
Rainer (yellow) cherries
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Old 07-15-2015, 06:37 PM   #5  
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Love that there are a couple other Farmers Market-ers here!

kaplods your Hmong couple sound adorable!

Glad to see beets and daikon on your list. I was thinking beets for next week. And...I've never eaten a daikon. It's high time I tried. I've been planning to get one for a while

utgirl how nice that yours is within walking distance! I do understand the weight though. Some weeks depending on what we've purchased, just lugging it from the car to the house can be a mini workout. Maybe for the sake of your shoulders and back look into one of those little 2 wheeled carts?

We're lucky enough to have a couple markets within reasonable driving distance. The one a few minutes from here (by car) is smaller like utgirl's. Another is an extra 10 or 15 minutes away but far more vendors so that's our usual stop. Both happen to be on Saturdays. I do wish we had a mid-week one nearby.

I think our list (so for) for this week will be:
Honeydew - getting them while I can!
Zucchini for more chips
Beets
Daikon
Okra
White peaches and/or pluots
Brocciflower or whatever for snack veggies

Like both of you, I know what I hope to get - but we'll actually get what looks best and has the best flavor. The heirloom tomatoes have started to look promising and I do LOVE those things. I can easily make a meal out of them.
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Old 07-16-2015, 08:26 AM   #6  
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We also always go with only a tentative list and a very open mind, because we never know what's going to "speak" to us when we're there (or what some of the vendors might throw in free).

Our Hmong family always throws something extra in our bags. This time it was some extra kohlrabi. "Grandma" was there and told me (to explain the less-than perfect tops) that they only use manure, not chemicals (which I already knew).

One of the reasons I prefer this vendor and the other older Hmong farmers is because they almost all use traditional, organic farming practices, but don't get certified,so they don't have to charge certified organic prices.

All our certified organic farmers charge astronomical prices and their produce leaves always looks too perfect to be grown without pesticides (and many of the allowable organic pesticides are more dangerous than the man-made ones). Even worse, many of the certified organic vendors trim away the leaves away, so you can't see the evidence of pesticide use or wilting. And because many of the tops (like beets) are edible, you pay a lot more for less food.

Most of the Hmong vendors leave the veggies untrimmed, so you can really see what you're getting, and many pick their veggies the morning of market, rather than the day before.

I just wish I spoke Hmong, because many of the veggies I buy have no English name (or the vendors do not know it).

I've been buying the flowering bok choy (aka Chinese flowering cabbage, or choi sum) for years, without having a name for it. Now I have three.

It's really tasty (broccoli bok choy flavor, but more the texture of pea tendrils and spinach), and very inexpensive.

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Old 07-19-2015, 08:15 PM   #7  
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Yesterday here was kind of a fruit salad day. It's interesting to see what your vendors sell. We have a few vendors that sell veggies only, more that sell a combo of veggies and fruit and even more that have just fruit. I'm vaguely familiar with some of the items you mentioned but I think I only saw them in one booth yesterday.

The coming week is going to be really busy for DH and I so we're going to be doing a lot of basics this week. Mostly things that don't need a lot of prep and can even be eaten raw.

We're starting a see a lot of varieties of pluots and they were all wonderful! Most of the fruit was. I love my fresh fruit in the summer!

One thing I was a little disappointed in was the Heirloom Tomatoes. I really had my hopes up. They all seemed a little mushy and not bright tasting. I'm hoping they get better - I'm having a serious craving.

A couple of our vendors are like yours in that they sell things that have no direct english translation. A couple times I've asked what something is. They'll confer and chat for a bit and tell me that it really doesn't have an English named counterpart. I do plan to experiment with some of these when there's some spare time.

If nothing else, we're fixed for fresh fruit and raw veggies to much for the week!
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Old 07-20-2015, 10:10 PM   #8  
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Where I live we actually have a permanent farmers market in one of our main shopping centres. It's absolutely to die for but I've only been a couple times due to the fact that a) it's too far to walk b) the parking is terrible and c) I never want to take the bus because then I have to come back on the bus with all that stuff.

But reading this thread I think I may give it a go this weekend. I'm getting a little sick of the grocery store we go to because their produce is always eh. The Zucchini are always so skinny and it's impossble to get decent zoodles out of the spiralizer.

The best part is they have all sorts of meat and fish too. I feel like I'm really missing out by not going.
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Old 07-21-2015, 11:12 AM   #9  
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We have one in our small city. It's small but good. I only get eggs there as I grow all my own veggies and buy most of my meat in bulk straight from the farmer. I almost set up this year myself, but decided it was too much work setting up, etc. if I have extras this year I've enough people I know wanting to buy. I plan on going this weekend hopefully for some lamb
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