Fall Farmers’ Market Tour

 

My friend Gigi is an avid farmers' market shopper who loves to cook. When she invited me to go along with her to the Sunday Sacramento Farmers' Market, I was delighted. It meant getting up early on a Sunday but it was totally worth it because we get to buy our food from the farmers who grew it!

Gigi Shopping

The Sunday Sacramento Farmers' Market is the largest outdoor market I have ever seen. You can find it under the freeway in Sacramento every Sunday. There are actually two markets here, one that's Asian and one that's Californian.

IMG_1858IMG_1860

Both markets get crowded really fast, so we arrived early to get the best selection. The Asian market was really interesting. There were so many foods that I hadn't seen before, including Chinese broccoli, sweet squash, purple yams, fresh beans, and hot peppers. Gigi bought some peppers to make sauce and I decided to experiment with the Chinese broccoli, sweet squash, and purple yams.

IMG_1850

Gigi and I both said we wouldn't buy too much but we always end up making several trips to the car! The beautiful produce and bargain prices are just too tempting to resist. In this market, we can expect to save at least half of what we would pay in our local stores. Parsley was only 50 cents for a large bunch (versus $1 when I see it in the produce aisle) and small tomatoes were only $1 per pound. Since we go home with so much, we always work on cooking our haul into sauces and dishes that we can freeze and serve later.

IMG_1885

This week we noticed that the tomatoes were very plentiful, so I got 4 pounds of tomatoes for just $5. I decided to make sauce with them, so I got onions, peppers, garlic, and basil too. If you're patient with me, your scrolling will be rewarded with some great new recipes for that haul.

IMG_1884

Strawberries and other fruits were very fragrant and still in season, so I picked up some of them too. The strawberries were such a good price that I got 3 boxes and made them into a gel sauce that could be used right away or frozen for later. Members can get an exclusive look at that very recipe!

strawberrygel

Speaking of sauce, the apples and raspberries were plentiful enough to not only eat fresh but also to make a glorious pink raspberry apple sauce. The basil got pureed, turned into pesto, frozen, then cut into cubes that could be reheated for fall. Meanwhile, the farmers' market carrots are perfect for grating into salads. Oh, and remember when I said your patience would be rewarded? Here's what I did with the tomatoes. First I made a fresh tomato salad plate from the fresh tomatoes, basil pesto, goat cheese, and wasabi-coated almonds.

IMG_1918

The remaining tomatoes got broiled and pureed into sauce. Here's a PDF handout with the recipe -- it's one that you won't want to miss!

Tomato Pasta Sauce Recipe

Oh, and remember those 3 boxes of strawberries? To get a brand-new handout with the recipe for the freezer-friendly treat I made with them, visit the member-exclusive post Recipe: Strawberry Gel.

Strawberry Gel Recipe Handout

For more farmers' market and cooking resources, visit the Nutrition Education Store! Here are some of my favorite materials...

Farmers' Market Photo Montage Poster
Home Run Meals Cookbook
PowerPoint: Lighten Up Your Cooking

We're here to help you look your very best, right now!

Become a premium member today and get access to hundreds of articles and handouts plus our premium tools!

Upcoming Posts

 

Holiday Education: Survival Challenge, Portion Control, Practice Parties and More Activity Ideas for Holidays

 
UP NEXT IN Cooking
Shopping Tips for the Holidays

 
UP NEXT IN Cooking
The Challenge is Choice – Supermarket Aisles Teach Important Nutrition Lessons

New Products Available Now

 
Published on Categories cooking, food shoppingTags , ,