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Farmer’s Market Finds: Exploring the Flavors of the Season

June 27, 2024

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Farmer’s Market Finds: Exploring the Flavors of the Season

Discovering the Joys of a Farmers Market Picnic

Summer is just around the corner, and one of my favorite activities is heading to the market on the weekend to grab fixings for an impromptu farmers market picnic. There are a few held here in Denver, Colorado, but my personal favorite is in the Platte Park neighborhood, just off I-25. This vibrant market is a treasure trove of local produce, artisanal baked goods, fresh-cut flowers, and so much more.

An afternoon spent here, collecting goodies for a delicious picnic equipped with a chilled bottle of La Crema Pinot Noir Rosé, is the perfect way to kick off the summer. All farmers markets are a bit different, so I encourage you to explore the ones around your area to find your favorite. When it comes to what to pick up for your farmers market picnic, the options are usually endless.

My go-to items are always fresh, juicy cherries and peaches, which should both be in season this time of year. In Colorado, we’re lucky to have the most divine peaches from Palisade that make their way to the stands in June – I can’t wait! A slice of pie or any other delectable baked good is also a must. I came across a mouthwatering rhubarb pie from a local bakery that was simply divine. Cheeses, sandwiches, popcorn, and any other little bites are essential as well. I like to take my time, doing a lap first to see what’s available, before looping back to grab the things that caught my eye.

Don’t miss out on exploring all the local farm stands and their produce. There are usually such great deals, and everything is so incredibly fresh. I often like to plan my meal for that evening by grabbing all the ingredients to make it right at the farmers market – it’s such a fun little challenge!

Packing the Perfect Picnic Basket

To make the most of your farmers market adventure, be sure to pack a sturdy basket or tote to hold all your goodies. Don’t forget a cozy blanket, wine glasses, forks and knives, napkins, and of course, your bottle of rosé. La Crema’s Rosé is the perfect pairing to any summer soirée, especially a farmers market picnic. I love enjoying this refreshing wine with the juicy, vibrant flavors of the season, especially a piece of that delectable rhubarb pie.

Once you’ve gathered all your munchies, head to the nearest park or a perfect little spot near the market to set out your blanket and enjoy your feast. Savor each bite, sip your wine, and soak in the lively atmosphere of the farmers market. It’s a simple pleasure, but one that never fails to fill me with joy and a deep appreciation for the bounty of the season.

Exploring the Flavors of the Season

One of the best things about shopping at a farmers market is the opportunity to discover new and exciting produce that you may not find at your typical grocery store. As I strolled through the stalls, I was immediately drawn to the vibrant colors and enticing aromas of the seasonal offerings.

I couldn’t resist the urge to try something new, so I found myself drawn to a stall featuring an array of heirloom tomatoes in every shade of red, orange, and yellow. The farmer enthusiastically described each variety, sharing their unique flavor profiles and recommended uses. I ended up leaving with a mixed basket of these juicy, flavor-packed gems, already envisioning the delicious caprese salad I would create when I got home.

Another standout discovery was the array of fresh, fragrant herbs. I’ve always been a fan of cooking with herbs, but the selection at the farmers market was truly impressive. From the robust, earthy aroma of the rosemary to the bright, citrusy notes of the lemon verbena, I couldn’t resist stocking up on a variety to elevate my summer dishes.

As I continued my exploration, I stumbled upon a stall offering an assortment of locally-grown mushrooms. I’ve always been intrigued by the umami-rich flavors of mushrooms, and these were unlike anything I’d seen before. The farmer eagerly explained the unique characteristics of each type, from the delicate, velvety oyster mushrooms to the meaty, savory portobello caps. I knew I had to take some home and incorporate them into my next meal.

Celebrating the Abundance of the Season

One of the true joys of shopping at a farmers market is the sense of community and connection with the people who grow and produce the food. As I moved from stall to stall, I couldn’t help but be struck by the passion and pride that each vendor exuded. From the chatty berry farmer who regaled me with tales of her family’s generational farm to the enthusiastic baker who described the painstaking process of crafting her flaky, buttery croissants, every interaction was imbued with a genuine love for their craft.

This sense of community and celebration of the season’s abundance was palpable throughout the market. I couldn’t help but feel a sense of excitement and anticipation as I contemplated the endless possibilities of the ingredients I had gathered. As I returned home, my mind was already whirring with recipe ideas, eager to put these fresh, flavorful finds to use in my own kitchen.

Whether you’re planning a picnic, stocking up on ingredients for a summertime feast, or simply exploring the vibrant world of seasonal produce, the farmers market is truly a place of discovery and delight. I encourage you to venture out and explore the markets in your own community, immersing yourself in the flavors, stories, and connections that make these hubs of local bounty so special.

And if you’re looking for a community-supported agriculture (CSA) service to help you discover the joys of seasonal, locally-sourced ingredients, be sure to check out Thornalple CSA. Their commitment to sustainable, farm-to-table practices and their curated selection of the season’s finest offerings are sure to inspire your culinary adventures.

So, grab your basket, your favorite bottle of rosé, and get ready to embark on a delicious exploration of the farmers market’s bounty. The flavors of the season await!

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