Every other week our neighborhood hosts a farmer’s market. It’s a real reason to smile and be grateful!
In the summer, it’s too hot for outdoor markets, but across the Valley of the Sun a number of farmer’s markets have found indoor locations. They are all fairly distant from my home, so I savor the fresh flavors from October to April. It’s not a huge market, but it’s got a little of everything.
One vendor, certainly the largest at our little market, sells fresh fruits and vegetables. A recent trip netted some farm fresh carrots, onions, tomatoes and … a favorite … fresh herbs. The aromas of fresh cut basil, rosemary and thyme send me over the moon!
Around the “corner” from the veggie guy, there’s a table with homemade pastas. A chat with the owner reveals he uses the same recipes and techniques as his family in Catania, Sicily. He says he even uses the same equipment. Lucky for us, his flavored pastas are beyond delicious. My favorite is the black olive pasta. It somehow retains a little of that Sicilian olive flavor even with my homemade bolognese.
There are booths with salsas and giardiniera. There’s a tea vendor; someone sells avocado products. Occasionally there’s a gelato food truck.
Local crafters and home product sellers offer hats, straw purses, leggings and the always colorful metal yard art. It’s a favorite with its splashy display.
Along the end row are the food vendors. On this particular day, the smell of brats, dogs, burgers and chicken fill the air. I managed to time my trip to end at lunchtime, so I snagged a footlong hot dog. It’s a rare treat and there’s something special about dogs cooked in the open air.
Our market isn’t huge, but it’s just right for me. I am grateful to the vendors who trek into the desert to hawk their wares. Shopping in the sunshine, encountering neighbors and supporting local businesses fills me with joy.
There’s a whole world out there just waiting to be explored. Find a market during your travels and check out what’s local.
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