Ah, the lazy days of Summer. The days get longer, the heat gets hotter, and the “to do” lists rarely get any shorter. Seems like I’ve been slacking on my posts lately, but actually I’ve been really busy. I’ve been doing a lot of Albukirky Seasonings promotion, and I’ve been spending my Saturday’s at the Armijo Village Grower’s Market selling my sauce and rub among a small group of artisans and farmers. I never expected I would ever be at a gower’s market selling anything, but I have to admit, I’ve been having a hell of a good time.
|Chica chilling in the shade|
|The Onion Lady & her granddaughter|
We have certainly enjoyed a plethora of the freshest produce being at our fingertips over the past few weeks and this accessibility has elevated our cooking and menu preparation to a whole new level. Even more amazing than the verdant veggies, however, is the people. Stroll up to any booth and you are invariably greeted with a smile. They welcome questions and will happily tell you when the items were harvested, what types of seeds they used, and how they prepare them at home for meals. Unlike the big chain grocery stores, these folks are not motivated by profit. They enjoy the fruits of their labor (forgive the pun) by eating fresh at home, but sometimes end up with a surplus which we are lucky enough to share in. Like I said I’ve spent most of my profits on fresh produce and it’s been worth every penny.
|Linda grows all this great stuff in her lil ol’ garden|
If you’re looking to get the best produce and want kick your cooking up a notch, I urge you to seek out your local growers markets and visit them on a regular basis. Most of the time, the produce was harvested that morning and it doesn’t get any fresher than that. The best part is the produce is grown by people who are passionate about what they are doing and you can really taste the difference. It may be a bit cliché but Think Global and Buy Local has never been more important, as is the need to build community and support small business owners. Next time you’re at the local big box store, ask an employee (if you can even find one) in the produce section these questions…”where was this grown?”…”what pesticides were used?”…”when was it picked?”. If they can’t answer these simple inquiries, drop that head of lettuce and head to your neighborhood grower’s market. They’ll not only answer these questions with flying colors, but they’ll do it with a smile and might even share a recipe or tell you how to grow your own. Show your support for your local growers and they will support your dinner table. You’ll be glad you did.