Our Farmers Market Guide
The farmers market has become a beloved place for me this summer in quarantine. Somewhere to go, someplace to be! With every trip, I understand more and more about how our food is grown and how these practices connect us so deeply to the people and land around us. Here are the questions I've learned to ask, the resources I rely on and the fruits and vegetables that shine in late summer. Plus, a roundup of our team's favorite cookbooks and kitchen tools created by women.
1. Ask Questions
Organic certification can be out of reach for small farmers even if they are committed to ethical practices. Farmers also sometimes choose to forgo organic certification for valid reasons. Start a conversation and ask questions if you don't see certifications. The more you ask, the more you'll understand how to support the practices that matter to you without ruling out smaller farms. If I don't see any signage to communicate organic certification, I like to ask: "What's the difference between certified organic practices and yours?" From seed, soil, fertilizer, pest control, feed, where and how animals are raised, the topics here are varied and really interesting. I've learned so much from these conversations. This is a great resource if you want to dig deeper. I also like to ask: "Is everything grown on your farm?" It can be common for farms to resell produce and other goods bought at wholesale. If they are selling wholesale, is the produce ethically sourced from a nearby farm to round out their selection? Or is it conventional produce flown in from farther away?
2. Understand Seasonality
Understanding what's in season in your local area will give you the best tasting, most nutritious food. Eating seasonally also benefits the environment and your local farming communities. Late summer is when tomatoes, corn, blueberries, blackberries, bok choy, basil, melons and so much more are in season in New York. Use this tool to lookup the best of the season in your local area.
There is something really special about connecting to the seasons and land through what we eat. I appreciate cooking and eating so much more when this connection is there. Below is a roundup of our team's favorite kitchen tools and cookbooks created by women. We hope they help you bring home, cook, and enjoy all the goodies at your local farmers markets.Rally On,