Lately I’ve been kind of obsessed about eating seasonally & locally. I figured, I have some free time during the day to hit up different farmers markets, so why not? And I have to admit, once I started, I was totally hooked! Not only do you get super fresh produce but the farmers markets have so much more than you would ever know! Think meats & fish, cheeses, nuts, bread and even honey! With so much delicious ingredients grown locally, we really are spoiled! So why not take advantage of it?
San Francisco has numerous farmers markets across the city. There is at least one somewhere in the city every day. And you get to choose for multiple different ones on the weekend. I rotate between a few of them, but my favorites are at the Civic Center, Fort Mason and the Ferry Building. The Ferry Building tends to be a bit more expensive, as they’re catering to tourists, but they usually have a really great selection.
The weekend markets usually have a few more vendors, but the week day ones can be just as great. You just have to get out and discover which ones you like best. And be sure to always ask the vendor any questions you may have about their product. They love sharing with their costumers great ways to cook, store and eat their product. It’s fun getting to know the different vendors and we look forward to seeing them every week.
Also, a good tip: Bring cash to the market with you, as most vendors do not take cards. Some may take cards using square or other methods, but don’t count on it. Some markets (such as the Civic Center – Heart of the City Market) have booths where you can charge your credit or debit card and they will give you tokens that you can then use around the market. However, some vendors will offer “cash discounts”, so cash is always ideal.
If you’re trying to find different farmers market in San Francisco so you can shop around and find your favorite, here’s a good list I found here . If you’re not in San Francisco, yelp is a good place to start when looking for local farmers markets. Go through some local blogs and see if you can find a list like this for your city as well. You’d be surprised what you can find.
You can learn more about all CUESA has to offer on their website. This organization is so great when it comes to eating seasonally and locally. They also have great charts to show you which vegetables/fruits are in season and all the locations & times of local farmers markets in your area. Be sure to find one in your area so you can experience the deliciousness of eating seasonally and locally.
It’s also important to know what to shop for. Buying organic is always a good idea, as it keeps unwanted toxins and chemicals out of your home. But did you know not all organic produce are equal?
If you have the means to always buy organic, then do it! But if you don’t, it’s a good idea to remember the Dirty Dozen & Clean Fifteen. These are lists of produce which are high and low in pesticide and toxin levels. Be sure to always buy organic produce from the Dirty Dozen, as those are always the highest in all those nasty chemicals. If you’re on a budget, you can relax knowing that not buying organic for the Clean Fifteen isn’t all that bad. There may still be toxins on your produce, but these items tend to have a much lower amount than other items.
So the next time you’re buying produce, just remember this list. Keeping your family healthy and clean doesn’t always have to come at a high cost. What are some of your favorite things to buy at the farmer’s market? What’s your kids favorites snacks? I love hearing from you! Like, comment and share!