Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Homegrown Summer: A Visit to The Forks Farmers' Market

Blog post by Lindsay Somers

I don't know about you, but I love enjoying each season and the unique things it brings. In summer, I love biking and taking in the sites, sounds, and flavours. One of my all-time favourites is the fresh produce that we get here in Manitoba, and nothing says summer like going to a farmers' market to get it. So last weekend we (Bob and I) biked to The Forks Farmers' Market (open on Sundays from 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. near The Forks Market) to check out what they had.


We decided to bike there because - well, I want to ride my bike everywhere! It feels great to use your own body to move, get outside and is a more pleasant way to get places. With updated bike lanes and oodles of bike parking, The Forks is an easy bike destination to get to [just remember to bring a tote bag to haul all your goodies!]. 


Farmers Markets are always a bit of a surprise shop, you never know whats in season (non-gardener here!), and artisans always have new and different handmade offerings. My strategy is always to walk a couple laps first as see whats out there before really honing in.


I love chatting directly with the people who spent time handcrafting and growing the goods. Everything is made with pride and care. It feels so good buying directly from the source.


One of my favourite finds was infused vinegar from Blue SkyManitoba. Its a game changer for homemade salad dressings. Just mix with olive oil, and voila! Delicious salad dressing. There were over 20 different kinds of infusions. After some hard deliberations, we chose oregano, sun dried tomato and garlic. You can smell every sample to see what suits you. The vinegars are also great for meat marinades and dips too!

Another great discovery was Teamate tea. Every tea you could possibly imagine, I mean EVERY kind. We settled on mint green, ginger fresh and iced lavender. It is worth stopping by this booth if only for the aromatherapy!


Fruit and vegetable season is just beginning, and there was already so much to choose from! I picked up a few salad essentials: spinach, radishes and zucchini. I always prefer locally grown vegetables, they taste so much better. And, all are grown organically with no pesticides. We rounded out our shopping trip with some classic Manitoba perogies! I imagine they were made with tender love in a rural church basement.


What a lovely way to get my produce and a few essentials for the week. Its an excellent way to spend time together browsing about on a sunny day. Ah, summer.


Later, we came home and put together a simple summer supper. Perogies and salad, so good! I cant wait to see what theyll have next week!


Lindsay Somers is an expert in urban lifestyle health. You can follow her on Twitter and Instagram. All photos by @janinekropla

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