This picture right here just about sums up everything I love about farmer's markets in general and my little market here in Northern California specifically. It's a small smile, a quiet pride, and an absolute insistence that I try these plums, these ones right here, right now, before they're all gone.
My local farmer's market takes place on Saturdays on Murphy Street in Sunnyvale, a Silicon Valley 'burb about an hour south of San Francisco along the Bay. I love it.
I love how much people use the market here. Whole families with laden market bags looped over the handles of baby strollers. Bicyclists in clomping shoes and racing attire picking out the juiciest peaches for their mid-ride snack. Elderly couples frowning by the tomatoes, communicating silently as they fill their bag.
I don't have any favorite vendors, preferring instead to buy a few things from many stands—and as much as I can justify with the coming week's dinner plans. I am a sample fiend, and have started letting these little tastes guide my shopping in a way that is new to me.
Right now, the market is flush with peaches, nectarines, and strawberries. The plums and pluots are starting to come in, just as the cherries are on their way out. In the vegetable department, we have corn and tomatoes galore, along with the usual tables spilling over with leafy greens of every type. I have become addicted to dino kale.
As a transplant from more northern climes, I can't get over the abundance and variety of these California markets. I hope it's ok with you, but I think I'll stay.
What's happening at your market right now?
Related: Farmer's Market Report: Portland, Oregon
(Image: Emma Christensen)