Monday, July 13, 2009

St. Paul Farmer's Market -Saturday Morning

No two colors the same!
Colorful! Yellow wax beans, light green snap peas, deep green beans, brown garlic, white onions, Yukon gold and red potatoes, snappy orange baby carrots
The Capital City Brass!
More than a horn of Good Plenty

A friend and I had a delicious time at the St. Paul Farmer's Market on Saturday. Many of Minnesota's tasty bounty are now beginning to show up on the marketer's tables. Some of my "must-have" items are fresh flowers, kohlrabi, green beans, and red potatoes. Since The Hassenpfeffer Heist, as it's become known at my home, I am forced, sigh, to get to farmer's markets around the area as often as I can. Do you feel for me? You don't?

There are location choices. There are satellite markets Tuesday in one suburb, Thursdays in a western city, and Saturdays both in Apple Valley where I live and in St. Paul. I went to our city market about two years ago, and wasn't that enthralled, but it may have been my timing. Two weeks in our short growing season makes a big difference.

On this past Saturday, we went to both Apple Valley and St. Paul, wondering which was better, or whether the choices would be limited at the smaller suburban venue. I was pleasantly pleased with the fact that our market had almost everything the "big city" had. They were all the same price, and they had everything on my grocery list! The raspberries and a few blueberries were coming in, some small broccoli, currants, and a few tomatoes from western Wisconsin were there. This farmer's market boasts a fifty mile radius for goods.

The St. Paul market is much bigger. It included organic meats, eggs, cheeses and dairy, beef jerky a table of hmong purses, and a handmade jewelry marketer.

However, the best part is that up in St. Paul, there is music. Every Saturday, a different group performs. Here is the schedule if you're interested. This requires a fair amount of work from the performing group. Horns and chairs, music stands, clothes pins, and even a towel become part of the experience. Ask people who've ever played live outside, and they will tell you that clothes pins are an indispensable musician's tool. I learned the hard way on my first outdoor wedding. Since then, they are always in the bottom of my bag. You just never know.

I'm still waiting for my first tomato of the season. They just didn't look quite robust yet today. It needs to dribble down my chin.

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