Six Tips For Having A Great Trip To The Farmers Market
While farmers markets are typically thought of in the late spring and summer months, they actually occur all year round, and are very popular throughout cities all around the world. If you visit one yourself, you will find great, local ingredients to use when you learn to cook. If your online cooking class calls for fresh fruits or vegetables, check out these tips for making the most of your farmers market visit.
Choose your time wisely
There are benefits to visiting a farmers market both early and late in the day. According to Nourished Kitchen, going early will ensure that you get the best pick of the litter, especially if farmers have smaller quantities of certain crops. However, if you go late in the day, you may be able to take advantage of produce at discounted prices, as farmers won’t want to cart the leftovers home with them.
It’s in the bag
Some vendors offer plastic bags, but they may not accommodate all your purchases. Bring plenty of larger bags like reusable grocery bags, insulated bags, a backpack, or even small duffel, depending on the size of stash you’re hoping to take home. You may even want to consider bringing a wagon so you aren’t burdened with a heavy load.
Buy in season
When produce is in season, it will taste fresher and come at a lower cost because it does not need to travel far distances to get to your market. Know your seasonal produce before heading to your local farmers market. And, keep in mind that ‘seasonality’ varies by region.
Bring a cooler
Farmers markets are great places to buy fruits and vegetables, but many also have stalls that offer meats, cheeses, fish, yogurt and pre-made foods that require refrigeration. When you head out, bring a cooler and ice pack with you so you can safely store perishable items while you shop and are in transit.
Cash is still king
While more vendors can now accommodate cashless purchases, still not all can. Bringing small bills, like ones and fives, can make your transactions go much faster.
Get to know your farmers
If you…or they…are new to the market, make time to get to know each other. They will appreciate you sharing your likes and dislikes as well as you getting to know their farming, harvesting, canning methods, etc. Plus, as they are the experts on their crops, and will most likely be able to share some great preparation tips!