I woke up this morning to blue skies, sunshine and chilliness. Having promised to go and watch Martin play hockey (a regular Saturday occurrence) I knew we would need something warm and filling to come home to. An empty head and a cold nose got me out of bed and, once up, I set off to Truro Farmer’s Market in search of foodie inspiration.
I find farmer’s markets really interesting. In the politicised view of food retailing they are either seen as an over-priced indulgence for the affluent (“you can buy it cheaper in Tesco”) or the saviours of our souls – protecting us from the evils of a globalised food economy.
If I am honest I am a political creature. I like that I am supporting the local economy, I like that the farmer’s market brings more people into the town centre but the bottom line is that if the food was over-priced or poor quality I wouldn’t buy it.
In reality farmer’s markets are simply about local growers/producers selling direct to the public and getting a fair price for their produce.
The people I met yesterday weren’t talking politics they were talking food. Shoppers (of all ages and from all walks of life) were buying fresh food, chatting with stall holders and having conversations with each other of the “what should we have for dinner?” variety.
So, did I get the inspiration I was seeking? You bet I did.
I bought venison for a casserole and veg for a leeky mashed potato to have with it and some beautiful romanesque because I couldn’t resist it’s pointy prettiness. I also bought smoked garlic (try getting that in Tesco) and a ripe and runny local brie from Nigel. Nigel has the allotment next to ours and while I shopped we chatted about wind damage and the need to get down and digging (mostly my need in fairness, Nigel’s allotment is beautiful).
I was in just a little too early to get hot soup which is a shame because my hands were cold and I know from experience that it is really good soup. I cursed my husband, yet again, for being allergic to shell fish as I drooled over smoked langoustines and shiny fresh crabs. I calculated how much bread was in the bread bin at home and resisted the urge to buy a crusty cob or sourdough loaf – maybe next week…
Supermarkets at the moment are full of slashed prices and stressed people – reminders of how hard times are – and maybe it was just the winter sunshine, or maybe I am overly romantic but at the farmer’s market people just seemed happier to be out and about; shopping and chatting and generally getting on with their lives.
I would like to say a huge thank you to all the traders at Truro farmer’s market (not for the produce – I paid for that) but for their patience as I got in the way taking photographs on a busy Saturday morning.