Ever since the start of summer, one of my favorite things to do on a Saturday morning is wake up to the sunshine, mix up a quick iced coffee, lace up my Converse and walk to the farmer’s market. I used to love sleeping in on Saturdays, but there is something about waking up when the grass is still dewey and the morning light still has that glow to it. It was on my summer bucket list to go to the market every Saturday, and so far I’m making great progress. Here are my favorite parts about the market and a few tips I’ve learned.
Talking with the Farmers
If you are able to get to the market on the earlier end when it first opens, I highly recommend it. Before the rest of the crowds roll in, the market is calm and you can talk to the farmers about their products. Visit with them, ask their opinion and always follow their recommendations! They know what produce tastes the best, what are a hit or what you could to do prepare them.
Catching up on Podcasts
On my walk to the market, I listen to a few episodes of podcasts and people watch. My go-to podcasts right now are Side Hustle School and Jenna’ Kutcher’s Goal Digger podcast. They are both super entrepreneurial-based and fire me up with ideas while I walk.
Grab Lunch for Later
Because I am such a morning person, I love to have my regular breakfast when I get back from the market. Yogurt, granola, fruit and a slice of peanut butter toast go with with a second cup of coffee. A few hours later after my relaxation and Food Network watching, I like to warm up something for lunch that I found at the market. Last week at the Carmel farmer’s market I got some tamales and they were so good! This weekend I’m eyeing Rosie’s barbecue.
Spend Less at the Grocery Store
One thing my weekly trips have gotten me thinking about is how to spend less time and money at the grocery store. You all know I love Trader Joe’s, but it’s no secret their produce is not always prime. Now I’ve been able to cut down my visits to only getting the essentials that I can pair with fresh produce from the market!
A Whole New Look at Produce
Remember the Instagram story I filmed about the “ugly tomatoes?” I found these huge cartons of tomatoes you could buy for only $5 because they were not as pretty as the perfectly round unblemished ones next to them. I love how the produce is REAL at the market. The tomatoes are not perfect, the lettuce is still in big full leaves on the head, fresh garlic has the green tops still growing on it and the berries are not super sized. Shopping seasonably reveals the true beauty of produce that was meant to be grown during this specific time of year for a reason.
A Few Tips
Make your own iced coffee in a tumbler to bring with you. It will save you a few dollars that you can use for produce instead! (Try this Trader Joe’s cold brew concentrate that I’m loving.) Be sure to bring reusable grocery bags or a beach tote to save from carrying plastic bags from each vendor. Wear sunglasses or a hat and sunscreen because it’s always sunnier than you think it will be! Bring cash so you can make quick transactions. And the #1 tip: do a circle around all the vendors before you start buying – you won’t have buyers remorse that way and you can see what inspires you!
What are you doing this Saturday morning? Do a quick search and see if there is a farmer’s market you can drive to or, even better yet, walk to! Even if you don’t purchase anything, it’s a simple way to get morning exercise, enjoy the fresh summer air and explore your city. If you have any questions about shopping at the market, send me a Tweet!
Love food. Love self. Love life.