Today seems like a good day to start our responses to the How you live bioregional quiz. The first questions is:
On what day is your local farmers market?
Chisago City Farmers Market - rhubarb and eggs
Without getting as existential as former President Clinton did with the distinction between "is" and "was," to answer this question we need to explore the meaning of the word "your." The answer, in regard to farmers' markets, could be more obvious if we lived in Minneapolis or St. Paul or some community that had their own farmers market. For residents of those cities it's fair to assume that each would have "their" farmers market. Unless, of course, perhaps because of physical proximity, some residents of St. Paul regularly shopped at the Minneapolis market, or vice versa. This also can occur outside the Twin Cities. The definition of "your" in those cases would be based on the market which the shopper regularly frequented. That seems like a better approach, although we don't shop at any market regularly but irregularly frequent 3 or 4 in our neck of the woods so we still haven't nailed it down. Throughout Minnesota there are 183 farmers markets, according to Minnesota Grown. Within 10 miles of our place, there's this half dozen:
Although each of them is also listed as having a Winter Farmers Market, most seasons are only listed as running into October, which, even with Minnesota's occasional Halloween Blizzard, isn't usually considered Winter.
- Chisago City Farmers Market--Fri
- Forest Lake Farmers Market--Tue
- North Branch Farmers Market--Sat
- North Branch Farmers Market Fest--Fri
- Wyoming Farmers Market--Thu
- Lindstrom Farmers Market--Wed, Sat
Chisago City Farmers Market - asparagus
If we go out to 25 miles from home, there's a total of 21 markets listed under both Farmers Market and Winter Farmers Market. That makes me more than a little suspicious of the accuracy of the Winter listings. On the other hand, the listing for each market at Minnesota Grown appears to include the period for which it's open. In addition, some of the individual markets have their own web sites and, the one closest to us, also sends out email updates of what's available and other interesting tidbits. Others are listed on the Local Harvest web site and/or the Minnesota Farmers Market Association site.
As I'm sure you know, Farmers Markets are but one element in a local food system that also includes Community Supported Agriculture, food cooperatives, possibly food hubs and other production, distribution and sale nodes in the network. Since I'm helping the Minnesota Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council organize a discussion next month.about the Twin Cities system, and you're welcome to join us, I'm putting in a self-serving plug. Here's some details.
Chisago City Farmers Market - vegetables
08/13 - Putting a Fork in It:
Eating Local; Growing Sustainable
Thurs, 08/13 | 4:15-6:30p | RJM Construction, MinneapolisHow are Minnesota organizations supporting sustainable living through local food production? Join us at our next Green Scene where representatives from the local food system will discuss how to stay healthy by enjoying fresher, healthier food; growing foodsheds by supporting local farmers, benefits to the local economy by keeping food dollars in the community, and understanding where food comes from, what’s in season and how to make it delicious.Stay for happy hour to connect with others who are passionate about all areas of sustainability over great food, drink and lively conversation.
5:30: Happy Hour
Pricing and Registration:
$15 Members | $20 Guests
How easily happiness begins bydicing onions. A lump of sweet butterslithers and swirls across the floorof the sauté pan, especially if itserrant path crosses a tiny slickof olive oil. Then a tumble of onions.
This could mean soup or risottoor chutney (from the Sanskritchatni, to lick). Slowly the onionsgo limp and then nacreousand then what cookbooks call clear,though if they were eyes you could see
clearly the cataracts in them.It’s true it can make you weepto peel them, to unfurl and to teasefrom the taut ball first the brittle,caramel-colored and decrepitpapery outside layer, the least
recent the reticent onionwrapped around its growing body,for there’s nothing to an onionbut skin, and it’s true you can go onweeping as you go on in, throughthe moist middle skins, the sweetest
and thickest, and you can go onin to the core, to the bud-like,acrid, fibrous skins denselyclustered there, stalky and in-complete, and these are the mostpungent, like the nuggets of nightmare
and rage and murmury animalcomfort that infant humans secrete.This is the best domestic perfume.You sit down to eat with a rumorof onions still on your twice-washedhands and lift to your mouth a hint
of a story about loam and usualendurance. It’s there when you clean upand rinse the wine glasses and makea joke, and you leave the minutestwhiff of it on the light switch,later, when you climb the stairs.
Thanks for visiting. Come again when you can.
Please be kind to each other while you can.