When I was a child (who's counting but over a half century ago), we would take drives on a Sunday afternoon. One of our favorite stops was a local farm market. In the summer, we'd buy a basket of peaches, boxes of cherries and plums. In the fall, we'd pick up a basket of apples, pumpkins and apple cider. We knew the owners of these stands and how they grew their products.
All these years later, my husband and I still search out farm markets. We have our favorites when we can't travel to a farmer's market on a particular day. At these markets I can still buy Stayman apples. This is the apple my grandmother and mom used to bake pies and other apple desserts. This variety has a tangy flavor that goes so well with cinnamon. But it's becoming harder to find. The photos on my blog today are of Baugher's market in Maryland, one of the few places I can still find Stayman apples. Apparently these trees need a little more care than newer varieties and when they die, they are not being replaced. That is such a shame because this variety has such a unique taste.
As you can see from the photos, flowers and pumpkins as well as fruit and vegetables abound here. These little sweet peppers go so well in soups and stews. Just the color in a dish in my kitchen makes me smile. This fall day was beautiful and being able to shop at this market and bringing back memories from long ago was a joy in itself.
We try to make healthy choices for meals. The idea of genetically engineered produce gives me the heebie-jeebies, just like the book 1984 did when I was in high school. We have a summer garden that produces heirloom tomatoes, peppers, zucchini and cucumbers. But sometimes our own garden produce isn't available. That's when we turn to farm markets. That's when we ask about pesticides and organic growing methods and learn where our food really originates.
As more people who care what they eat ask questions and grow their own food, I think more cooperative farm markets will emerge. Sometimes we have to look to the past...to figure out how to find the future.
©2013 Karen Rose Smith
Coming soon as an Audio Book
IN TOUCH with KAREN ROSE SMITH ezine
Karen Rose Smith's romance website
Karen Rose Smith's mystery website