Monday, August 9, 2010

The surprising gourmet delights of a small town farmer's market

To market, to market to buy....buttery and flaky chocolate croissants made by a French baker, organic string beans and beets by a female farmer committed to producing great vegetables, new potatoes, a pecan pie and some amazing, locally roasted coffee beans...when did our local farmer's market get so deliciously veggies, fruit and beyond?

Just a few years ago, Annapolis Royal's Farmer's Market (in its 30th year) seemed to be mainly produce, flowers and a vendor with organic beef, but these days the varied and down-right delicious vendors offer everything from baked goods (Max can't pass up the chocolate croissants) to roasted coffee beans that make the smoothest, most delicious coffee to a man who has a table of folk-arty birdhouses he fashions using old license plates. 
My market bag in the car, loaded with my Saturday morning shopping; new potatoes, organic beets, a baguette, a pecan pie, and a bag of ground coffee beans. 
I read recently (in the Locavore book I devoured) that Farmer's Market's, in the smaller Canadian communities, have begun to be the social gathering place that churches used to be. 

Getting to market early is of prime importance if you have something in mind that you absolutely want---the fresh blueberry pies ($3 each!!!!!) go FAST, and there is a lineup at the bread baker's table at least 4 people long till everything sells out. Some surprising items are two tables of local winemakers wines; one who specializes in fruit wines and a second who makes fabulous whites and dessert wines. 
One runs into everyone there, and after people have secured their goods, they stroll about and catch up with friends. As much as I love the farmer's market in our Tribeca neighbourhood, it is nothing compared to this market, where I can even buy a jar of homemade Jewel jam (made of four local fruits) from a girl I used to waitress with in my college days (delicious Sandy!). Getting to support local farmer's and artisinal food makers makes every thing I buy, that much sweeter to eat. I love it! 

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