Friday, May 04, 2012
Farmer's Market on Airline Road
The second reason is I like to pick out each tomato, or okra, or ear of corn or cucumber. More and more in the grocery stores, food is getting packaged----four ears of shucked corn in a styrofoam box and wrapped in plastic, little plastic tubs of cut up melon and fruit, a plastic box of okra. I've never liked the prepackaged produce but now that we are starting to hear more about what can leach out of the plastic and into our bodies I like it even less.
While we were picking out okra, we struck up a conversation with another man who was also picking out okra. And that is the third reason I like shopping at the Farmer's Market.....community. The conversation was about what we were going to cook with the okra which of course led to talking about gumbo. He made my mouth water when he said that he had some crabs to put in his gumbo. It isn't unusual at all for a conversation to start up while you fill your bag, "My, these tomatoes sure look good." "Yes, they are. I think I'll make up a pot of tomato sauce." "That would be good. How do you make yours?" And so it goes.
I always see a lot of stately black women shopping there with their baskets filled with okra, greens, tomatoes, peas......Oh, I wish they would take me home with them. I know that I would have a meal filled with soul.
And the fourth reason I shop there is because they have produce that I can't find in the grocery stores. This week they had purple hull peas, lima beans, speckled butter beans, and pinto beans. They were blanched and frozen, just like I would do them if I bought a bushel of beans and shelled them. They are not the same as Swanson frozen black-eyed peas and they certainly taste differently than dried beans and peas. Have you ever eaten fresh pinto beans? They are so fabulous, the same with the speckled butter beans, fabulous. If I hit the market at the right time during May, I might be able to buy a bushel of fresh pinto beans and shell them like I use to do but that was back when we were a family of five. It isn't practical for just the two of us. So I'm really grateful to find them already shelled and frozen.
One other thing I love about this market, Food Trucks. I know that these days food trucks are the IN thing. As long as I have been going to the Farmer's Market on Airline, there have been food trucks and they have all had some kind of Mexican street food. We try to time our trips there so we can eat from one of them.
So now you know why I drive across town to shop at the old Framer's Market on Airline.