blast from the past

Day 27: Something sweet

Yesterday, much to the chagrin of the boogies, we got up extra early and headed to farmers market. Saturday farmers market, not to be confused with the equally-awesome-for-different-reasons Thursday farmers market, is downtown and it is HUGE. Giant. It stretches for blocks and blocks and the set up is like a giant spider with endless legs.

You can find a little bit everything at farmers market. Obviously, you’ll find staples like fresh fruit and produce, but you can also buy farm-fresh eggs, a variety of fresh meat, Iowa-made gouda cheese, fresh breads, and specialty jellies and jams.

We’ve noticed a lot of local farms with stands where you can actually order a side of beef or a whole hog. The farmer will slaughter and process the meat for you and then you pick it up.

Des Moines is actually a pretty progressive area (yay for legalized gay marriage!), and it seems like people here are really taking an interest in their food. These vendors offer a ton of information about how their animals are raised and managed, and I can see the appeal of developing a relationship with a farmer and knowing where your food comes from.

You can also pick up fresh cut flowers or plants. We found adorable tiny hostas and some lovely hanging plants. If you get there early, you can also find nice rhubarb plants and save yourself a trip to the greenhouse in Adel.

As if all that wasn’t enough, there are also a slew of crafters at farmers market selling clothes, jewelry and other goodies.

Farmers market is also home to the best breakfast burrito on the planet. I’m not even kidding.

We couldn’t stay long, because Mr. Phish had to work yesterday, but we managed to spend about an hour strolling and basking in the wonderfulness of the day. It was very windy and almost chilly, which seems impossible given the current weather (90+ temps, 90% humidity, generally disgusting with a chance of heavy sweating).

Mr. Phish’s treat of choice fits the theme for today: homemade apple cider doughnuts.

He was generally thrilled to find them, as we’ve been suffering through a cider doughnut drought since we moved here from Ohio. While we were wedding planning many moons ago, we happened upon a family-owned orchard with a little store attached to it. The orchard backed up to an old golf course that had been turned into a hiking trail/park. Every so often, we would drive out there and get a little snack and sit on a bench and just enjoy the peacefulness of the country.

They also made and sold delicious apple pies and apple turnovers and wonderful apple butter. But the real star at Patterson’s (besides the apples themselves) is the apple cider doughnut. I love doughnuts, and these were among the best I’ve ever had. The glaze tasted like apple cider reduced down to intensify the apple flavor. Oh, those doughnuts. We bought and consumed them by the dozens. And we miss them. Mr. Phish has already worked his way through the first six (with a tiny bit of help from me) and the other six will likely not see Wednesday.

Here’s a look at the rest of our haul this week:

I love peonies. They are such a friendly flower. I had my mind set on hot pink peonies, but then this little bouquet stole my heart. I had a nice visit with the vendors–they arrived at 4:30am to set up their booth! I love the yellow flowers–they remind me of pineapples.

And the turtle, well, let’s just say I have a thing for turtles.

Happy long weekend!

8 thoughts on “blast from the past

  1. Best things about our local farmers market –

    1) Fresh flowers
    2) The Garlic Lady (garlic cloves fermented in chardonnay)
    3) Fresh flowers

    We don’t get much of the crafts, or breakfast burritos, or doughnuts, and certainly no cool turtles – you have to go to Pike Place for that stuff.

    Good stuff Christine, looks fun.

  2. Oh, my! I would love shopping for all those things. I had a hanging plant like that a few years ago…loved it. That breakfast burrito looks yummy…one of my favorite breakfast foods. Hugs

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