"To market, to market, to buy a fat pig.
Home again, home again. Jiggedy-jig."
I've seen the To Market, To Market blog event, but I've never thought of participating because, frankly, going to most of the farmer's markets here isn't that exciting for me. The few scattered around Vancouver range from small to smaller, and the range of produce (and other products available) is not large. I actually say sometimes, "I want to spend money but I can't find anything to buy!"
I joke that I want to go to Vancouver farmer's markets to pick up money. Since most vendors only take cash, a lot of people drop coins without knowing (or maybe most people just don't care about dropped coins). I once picked up $4, which is enough to buy me a couple of bunches of greens.
Also, I keep seeing our mayor, Sam Sullivan, at the Trout Lake Farmer's Market. I must have seen him twice already.
It's been quite a long time since we went to Trout Lake. TS is quite right and there is a boredom factor, because most of the produce vendors usually sell the same stuff. And I have no interest in the craft-y items for sale.
Then, one day, we were in the area near Richmond Country Farms. We've been here before, of course, but that was last summer. This is where we bought massive quantities of fresh corn. Seeing the sign, we were reminded of those fantastic corn from last summer. In we went.
They had very large hand-painted signs that were too cute: a Giant Corn sign, all smiles (literally; they drew and painted a corn "character" with a huge smile) and a Strawberry, smiling and saying "I'm back!". Teehee. Unfortunately, these signs were visible from the road and I couldn't take a picture of them from the car.
This market is huge! Not only do they have a lot of variety of produce, they also have available large amounts of most of them. So, instead of the usual "boredom", going here is very exciting! =)
And I'm guessing -- I somehow believe that this farm is family-owned and operated. Which is a big plus in my book.
Here are some shots of different parts of the outdoor section of the market. (They also have a indoors section with more produce.)
They even have a nursery or plants section.
They indicate whether the produce is their own ("Our Own Corn", for example), local, or from elsewhere. I try to get "their own" and local produce. Here are some of the market's offering.
Below: different kinds of eggplants and squashes, long beans, Indian karela (what is this?), longans, lychees, ...
An herb "cart".
A random selection of products include bins and bins (plural) of cauliflower and humongous tomatoes. (Finally, some green tomatoes!) Garlic, too.
Speaking of humongous, look at this Taiwan cabbage (local, by the way). It's huge! It's wider than JS!
Of course, they had the usual array of berries. Pur-ty!
But, for me, at least, the main attraction is the corn!
When these photographs were taken, they had Sheba corn. The latest time we went (yesterday), they had "Peaches and Cream" (bi-color) corn, and they were 2 for $1.
They have 3 "truck-loads" (or whatever these are called) of corn. You shuck your own. They have big bins for the husks and silks.
Look here! This is dedication! This pair climbed INTO the "truck" and started choosing corn from within! This is them caught in the act. Later on, I saw that they had at least three shopping carts full of corn! I wonder what they're using it for.
During today's trip, I saw a couple of elderly Asian ladies picking out corn silk from the bins of discarded husks and silks. I was a bit puzzled. Then, when I was shucking some corn, I saw another woman who was also shucking corn save the "clean" silks . I finally asked her what she used the silks for. She said the silks make the "broth" sweeter; that is, the water used to boil the corn. Ah! So those two elderly woman were basically getting free ingredients for making corn broth! Clever, they. =)
Corn. How I love thee.
The only thing I wish for is we have more of these farm markets around, growing a variety of produce. I hope Richmond Country Farm Market stays around for a long time.
And I would be happy, happy indeed if they started growing the green, leafy vegetables that the Chinese supermarkets always carry, e.g. yu choy, sher li hon (isn't that such a flirty name for a vegetable?), chrysanthemum leaves, and pepper leaves for our tinola.
Market Loot Series
Pesto Potato and Green Bean Salad
Yellow Beans, English Peas, Radish and Dill Salad
Fried Green Tomatoes
Chimichurri with Flank Steak
We're submitting this to To Market, to market, created by Gay of A Scientist in the Kitchen.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
"To market, to market, to buy a fat pig.