Field Trip!
Off To Market We Go!

Last week I promised you I’d be making a trip to the market and I keep my promises!

Unless they involve a chicken coop.  Or doing the laundry.  Or learning to speak fluent Portuguese.

I talked a little bit about eating local last week and how much better tasting fresh fruits and vegetables are.  Because they are.

But even if you don’t buy into the whole hippie dippie, support your local farmer, eat fresh foods and all that … you should still buy local.

Why?  Because the movie Food Inc. tells you to.

And …

Because it’s a shitload of fun.  That doesn’t seem like an appropriate description.  Sorry … sometimes swear words just pop out of me.  I don’t actually swear all that much – writing these posts seems to bring out the inmate in me.  I’m a pig.  What can I say.  What I meant to say is buying local is good, wholesome fun for the whole family!

Upon reflection, shitload is probably a very appropriate description.  What with all the organic farming going on at local markets.

That’s one thing that tends to frighten people from going to their local farmer’s market.  The price.  And yes.  If you’re going to buy all organic it is going to cost you more.  But just buying local isn’t.  So if you can’t afford it, just avoid the organic foods, that’s all.  But the truth is, the amount of extra money you’re going to spend on an organic carrot compared to a non-organic carrot isn’t all that much.

A whole chicken?  Well that’s another story.

O.K. we have a … lot of pictures to get to so let’s get on with it.

I spent a couple of hours last Thursday strolling around my local farmer’s market getting to know the vendors and their wares.  Obviously  you probably won’t be visiting my local market, but the information they gave me pertains to pretty much every food eating person out there.

Where it was possible, I linked to the local farms.  I was not compensated for doing this (O.K. … one lady gave me a muffin and someone else gave me a treat for my cat, but that was before they even knew I was going to link to their farm).  I did it to help out my local farmers in a teeny tiny way and to give you access to some more information about their particular product, be it chickens, cows or vegetables.

So without further ado, this little piggie’s going to  market!

First stop … baked goods.

Even though cookies aren’t my thing, I know how to get you people reeled in.  And of course for the fellas, there’s an old truck.

 

Bakery

 

 

My second stop was Berry Fresh Farms where I got some advice on caring for your berries.

Strawberries

 

 

FARMER’S TIP!

Do NOT wash your berries.  Honestly.  That’s what she said!  She said (with the regulations we have in Ontario) there is no need to wash your fruit.  Her family doesn’t and you don’t need to either.  Washing the berries makes them watery.  If you feel like you absolutely must wash your berries, only wash the ones you’re going to use immediately.

Berries

 

 

Tiny farm girls.  Seriously.  She even has a bow in her hair.  I wish all kids dressed like this instead of … well dressing like miniature adults.  Oftentimes, miniature adult stippers.

raspberries copy

 

 

Corn just came into season around these parts.

FARMER’S TIP!

Best way to cook it?  Soak it in water then BBQ it in it’s husk.  Pull the husks back the last few minutes so the kernels get a bit of grill on them.

(kay, that’s actually a “Karen” tip but as the chief vegetable grower and chicken feeder at Green Fakers, I’m allowed to give a farmer’s tip)

Corn

 

 

FARMER’S TIP!

Peaches are one of the most highly pesticided pieces of produce out there.  If you’re going to buy only one organic fruit, make it this one.

Peaches

 

 

I managed to find a fellow sweet potato lover … an entire booth dedicated to the sweet, sweet potato!

sweet potatoes

If you find a yam in your grocery store – chances are it’s a sweet potato.  90% of the sweet potato looking things in grocery stores are indeed sweet potatoes, not yams which are much more rare.

Sweetpotatofries

 

 

FARMER’S TIP!

You can do more than fry sweet potatoes!  Try making a Sweet Potato Muffin!

sweet potato muffin

 

 

Nope.  Not a beet.  A turnip.  And that thing you think is a turnip?  Nope.  It’s a rutabaga.

Turnip
Market

 

 

FARMER’S TIP!

If you’ve been wanting to plant your own garlics but don’t know how, here’s my guide to growing garlic.

Garlic

 

 

Kohlrabi – also a form of turnip.  German turnip.  Never ate one myself … might pick one up to try next week.  Heading to the local farmer’s market is a great way to prompt you into trying vegetables you’ve never tried before.

Kohlrabi
Oregano

 

 

Swiss Chard!  I’m not sure which exact variety it is, but it appears to be something like Bright Lights.  LOVE it.  If you haven’t tried a new vegetable in a while, make this the one.

swiss chard

 

 

Our local market is filled with 2 distinct types of people.  Hippies and hipsters.  The hippies are buying organic vegetables I don’t recognize.  The hipsters are buying these …

cookie sign

 

 

Homemade dog treats!

dog biscuits2

 

 

Unbelievably cute (the treats) and delicious smelling (the guy).

guy with dog

 

 

These treats were a HUGE hit with the pooches.

 

 

As well as the people.

eating dog biscuit

 

 

The dog treats are made with human ingredients.  Not humans.  Ingredients humans would eat.

 Munchie’s BARKery also offered antlers for gnawing on.  I didn’t notice any people chewing on these though.

Antlers
That’s all until tomorrow.  For now, this little piggy is going wee, wee, wee … all the way home.

O.K.  I lied. I’m already home.  Seemed like a cute way to end the post. At least I didn’t swear again.

Go to The Market Part II


44 Comments

  1. Rose says:

    Karen! Where the heck is your market? It looks tons better than the little farmers market that gets squashed into the mall’s parking lot (closest to me). Will travel far for a good market anyday!

  2. Rosie says:

    Sorry, that boy is mine! LOL
    We have so much fun every Thursday at the DFM. People are awesome, and so are the vendors. Keep up the good word. And… Munch On!
    G&R

  3. Ashley says:

    My German step-dad made me try some Kohlrabi last time I visited. He just cut it up and ate it raw. To me it tasted like a raw radish/cabbage/broccoli. I wasn’t a big fan, but it would probably be better with some sort of dressing.

  4. kelliblue says:

    Karen, thank you for this post! Farmer’s markets, cute boys, puppies, berries, kohlrabi (miss that stuff, they don’t have it here in Dallas…kinda like they don’t know what okra is up there), and a Food, Inc. mention…a movie that has pretty much changed my life, as far as buying food is concerned (however eating well is darn ex$pen$ive!). Thanks for the tip about peaches, never knew that. :( Hope nectarines aren’t the same way, I eat a ton of those!

  5. Amy in StL says:

    I get corn from the local market here and the guy there said I could just nuke it for three minutes in the husk. Totally works and since I only have a charcoal grill it means I’ve eaten a lot more corn on the cob this summer.

    • Karen says:

      Amy – Yup! I’ve done that too, but I did it once and my fella said it tasted weird. It didn’t. However, now he refuses to eat it that way. Well, he doesn’t refuse exactly, but if he catches me cooking it that way I have to spend the rest of dinner listening to him complain about it. ~ karen

  6. Amy says:

    Wow! Maybe I should try kohlrobi again. My mom used to fix it in a cream sauce. It was about the most bitter tasting veggie I ever ate! The minute my sisters and I would smell it cooking we would get in the car and go get fast food for our dinner. (oh, and it wasn’t from the cream sauce)

  7. Talia says:

    My grammy used to grow kolrabi and it is yummy. We ate it raw with a little salt and pepper. Warm fuzzy memories, for sure!

    Your farmer’s market is amazing. I just love to go and wish ours was open more than just Saturday mornings.

    The farm girls are precious. Mothers of daughters everywhere should take notes. This is how little girls should look. Darling!

  8. Devin says:

    I’m so happy that you included a picture of Kohlrabi. When I first started dating my (German) boyfriend, his grandmother (Oma) would send us home with a Kohlrabi fresh from her garden every time we’d visit her in the summer. I was perplexed, i had NO IDEA what to do with. The first few (sadly) rotted in the fridge… but now I’m happy to say that I’d consider myself a Kohlrabi pro!

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