Y’all… It is my FAVORITE. TIME. OF YEAR.
The Saturday Farmer’s Market is in full swing, bringing my Saturday morning routine back to life!! My ideal Saturday consists of waking up wayyyy too early considering it’s a weekend, making coffee, maybe going for a run/walk (or maybe sitting on the couch and watching 90s tv re-runs), then grabbing my basket & cooler bags and heading downtown. I try to get there at a decent time so I can stop by all my favorite spots before the good stuff runs out! Then I head toward Soby’s on the Side and grab myself a little breakfast.
This year, though, my routine has turned out to be a little different and I’m already loving the change. 1) Since Jeremy is now a Greenvillian I no longer have to go alone 🙂 and 2) since we’ve gotten into cycling, our routine this past Saturday included throwing the bikes on my (new!) car, packing a full-sized cooler with ice for our goodies and bringing along a change of clothes. We figured we’re already downtown so why not throw a bike ride into the mix?!
I consider myself very fortunate to be a Southerner for many reasons, but one of the things I really appreciate most about the area I live in is the proximity to farms and agriculture. You can find fresh produce stands almost anywhere this time of year. Outside family restaurants, on corners of busy intersections downtown or occasionally just set up in an empty parking lot. If you’ve read my “About Me” page, you’ve probably gathered how I feel about knowing where my food comes from. It’s not something I get on a soap box about or try to advocate publicly, it’s just a simple fact. When I’m buying this food from people and talking to them, I learn where their farms are and how far they drove to get this food here to sell to me. And I know that if I drove out there, they would be just as thrilled to show me around their land and let me see where it all came from. There’s nothing political about that…it’s just special. Don’t take it for granted. Just think how many born and raised New Yorkers have probably never seen peanuts or potatoes or tomatoes in their “natural habitat”. That’s just weird, y’all. It’s weird. You need to experience these things at some point in your life. Some of my favorite memories from the many drives up to our lake house growing up were of my Dad pointing to the different fields and knowing, in just a glance at 55 mph, whether it was soybeans or peanuts, silage corn or “people” corn. (And yes, now that’s me, pointing those same things out to Jeremy or whoever else is in the car and willing to listen)
But I digress…
So, back to fresh produce. Last Thursday we went to lunch at one our favorite spots in Anderson and I couldn’t resist these babies…
I mean, look at that COLOR y’all! These bad boys looked so good I had to check them twice just to be sure they were real. It was the most beautiful gigantic basket of strawberries I’d ever seen. The man in the rocking chair with the yellow lab told me they were picked right out back and that the whole gallon basket would cost me 6 bucks. Uhhh, yes please. So I took that gallon bucket home and I sat on it and tried and tried to decide what I would make – I thought about strawberry pie, which I adore, strawberry salsa, strawberry jam (but canning still terrifies me). Well in the midst of all this thinking, Saturday came along, I went to the farmer’s market and what did I buy? A homemade strawberry pie AND homemade strawberry salsa. I foiled my own plans. But I’d been sitting on this recipe for awhile – whole grain strawberry donuts with strawberry glaze – and I’d also been contemplating tackling scones…so why not strawberry?
Since I didn’t have whole wheat flour, I decided to go with scones and then top them with the strawberry glaze from the donut recipe. I used this recipe for the scones and followed it exactly so I won’t even post the recipe on here. One thing to note though, I added almost an entire extra cup of flour to my recipe. I’m not sure if my strawberries were extra juicy or if it was because it was a rainy day (baking is funny that way sometimes), but I just had the wettest, grossest scone dough and I had no choice!! Fortunately, though, they turned out pretty tasty, especially with the glaze, and I would definitely make them again. (Plus they were PINK! What’s not to love?!)
Some other goodies that I got were a Garden Garlic Goat Cheese spread from these guys and a Pineapple Habanero Jelly from Daylilies, a small company out of Cleveland, TN that makes fresh salsas, pesto, hummus and lots and lots of delicious canned goods. I’m excited to try that on some cheese sometime soon!
Happy Monday everyone!