Wednesday, October 7, 2009

MoFo Day 5: Santa Cruz Farmers' Markets, a brief lovefest

So remember how I was writing about pluots the other day and bemoaning the end of the pluot season?  (Maybe I didn't have enough time to properly bemoan... just imagine I was doing it though, okay?)  Well, I was at the Felton Farmer's Market yesterday and decided to pick up a few from my favorite pluot vendor anyway.  My husband was with me and bought a BUNCH of flavored almonds from the same guys.  I think we spent almost $20 at one stand!  When I go by myself, I usually spend about $20 at the whole market, so this is kind of remarkable.

Anyway, either as a thank you for buying all the almonds or because he fell under Emperor Babykins' thrall or just because it's the end of the season and he has to move these things fast, the pluot guy gave us a BUNCH of extra pluots and plums.  Like... I had picked out maybe three pluots and two plums.  We came away with 25 or so pieces of fruit.  Sheesh!  Awesome, though now I'm going to have to figure out something to do with the extra pluots/plums before they spoil.  Maybe pie...

I just want to take a brief minute here and say how awesome the local farmer's markets are to vegankind.  First of all, there's the produce.  Cheap, fresh, delicious. That goes without saying, right?  Oh, and the variety.  It seems like EVERYTHING grows around here.  If I look hard enough, I can ALWAYS find something I haven't tried before.  Yesterday I had a lemon cucumber!  (Tasty, like a normal cucumber with a slight extra tang to it.)  Almost bought a pomegranate.  Can you believe I've never eaten fresh pomegranate seeds?  Oh, I digress... back to the farmer's market.

Also, I like the haggling aspect of it.  There are a lot of vendors who will give you discounts if it makes the math easier (3.50 vs 3.67, for instance) or cut you deals they don't have signs up for.  The pluot guy's not the first vendor who has given me extra produce for free, either.  And I know that there are a bunch of vendors who save certain things (carrot tops, for instance) and give them away to people who feed them to their pets.  

And boy, do the local markets have a lot of tasty vegan crap!  At the main market in Santa Cruz on Wednesdays, you can get the following food stuffs:

vegan crepes
vegan samosas
vegan sorbet
vegan fresh raviolis and other pastas
fresh almond milk
fresh local bread
locally roasted coffee
fresh sauerkraut (I haven't quite worked up to this yet, but every week I get closer!)
unpasteurized fresh pomegranate juice
local tofu and other soy treats

And that's just the stuff I can think of off the top of my head.  Not all of it's at the other smaller markets, but they have various delicious stuff too.  Felton has kettle corn and shave ice!  Let me tell you, had I not been going home with a sack of pluots already, there would have been some serious snack going down.

The trouble with how wonderful the local farmers markets are is that I don't know how I'll ever be able to live anywhere else if I ever want to move.  I am really, really, really spoiled as far as fruit and vegetables and fresh vegan treats go these days.

Speaking of trouble, it seems like the Emperor has contracted thrush.  Oy vey.  I'm still fine so far, but the little man is pretty miserable.  We're taking him to the doctor tomorrow so hopefully he'll be getting better soon, but if I miss a day or two of MoFo, it's probably because I'm consoling my poor little gross-tongued guy.

1 comment:

Amey said...

poor little thrush baby. I hope he's doing better. Yes, you know that i share your love of the farmer's market... it really is wonderful!