Find a feast at the Farmers Market
By Deirdre Parker Smith
Greens of all colors have been exploding at the Salisbury Farmers Market the last few weeks.
At one tent, you’ll find three or more different kinds of lettuce. At another, there’s bok choy, pea shoots and spinach. At another, onions, cucumbers. And at another, two kinds of cabbage, broccoli rabe, kohlrabi and fennel.
If that’s not enough, there’s a table full of herbs, flowers ready to be planted, hanging baskets of petunias.
To go with all that green, there are some delicious browns — freshly baked bread, pound cakes, pies, muffins, brownies, cookies, even whoopie pies.
With the aroma of coffee floating around, it’s almost too much to take.
Almost everyone buys too much because it’s all so beautiful. Your mouth remembers the flavors from last spring and you can’t wait to get home and stuff yourself.
Early on you can find radishes, daikon, zucchini, squash. A lot of that will keep producing during the summer.
David Correll’s tent is bursting with color and all kinds of fresh vegetables. He’s worried about rain, but has plenty to offer.
The Millers, who have had weeks of delicious strawberries, promise corn by June, lasting until fall with successive plantings.
There are at least two farms that offer fresh meat, Bame Farms, which has pork, beef and chicken. It’s near Wild Turkey farms, so you know that land raises good food.
At Two Pigs Farm, you can get hormone-free ground turkey, duck, Cornish game hens and pork cuts.
Many vendors have eggs, and all those eggs have deeply colored yolks and a freshness that makes them hard to peel if boiled.
The Lys have wildly colorful flowers to set on your table while you eat.
At Eagle, greenhouse tomatoes look red and juicy.
The Bread Basket has just that, breads of all sorts and treats like pound cake and pecan pie.
How Sweet It Is has brownies, cookies, muffins, cinnamon rolls and more.
The only thing missing is milk and cheese and market manager Eric Bowen is trying to find some. It’s hard, he says, for people to transport fresh milk for sale in warm weather.
There’s fish, too, from OBX Seafood, and pimento cheese from McCombs, sauces and such from the Funky Pepper, soap from Treehouse Soaps.
And new vendors are coming, adding even more variety to what’s tempting shoppers.
Come early if you want the best of the best, but don’t fret if it’s later. You will surely find something. Several vendors accept and appreciate pre-orders to make sure you get what you want.
Talk to the vendors, make friends with them, ask how to cook or serve their offerings. They’re full of ideas. Try something new or different.
I hate to share my secret by inviting you, but my friends there have so much to offer. And it’s good, clean food that hasn’t been sitting in a warehouse or truck for days. Some is even picked in the wee hours of market days, Wednesday and Saturday, at the corner of Fisher and Jackson streets.
It’s a great place to meet people, too, and visit with friends. If not in Salisbury, visit the markets in China Grove, Kannapolis and around the area.
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