Saturday, July 11, 2015

Saturday morning at the Farmers Market

Going to the Farmers Market this time of year is one of my favorite things to do on a Saturday morning. Nashville has a pretty large Farmers Market downtown and I insist on hitting it at least a couple time a year, and always for pumpkins! but usually, during the summer, I just drop into the my tiny home town Farmers Market.

when I say tiny, I am not exaggerating. There are literally six or seven vendors, that is it. They have all the basics, tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, potatoes, corn a few preserves and whatever else local that happens to be in season.

It is a far cry from what I am used to. Although I have lived in Nashville for twenty years, I still miss the Farmers Market I grew up going to in Madison WI. It wraps all the way around the picturesque state Capital building, four long blocks square. And it is glorious. Flowers, cheese, pastry, bread, jams, jellies, salsa, meat, sausage, jerky,  fish, eggs and local fruit and vegetables both the exotic and the expected. Plus, soaps, handmade jewelry and of course being Madison, Tie dye and hemp everything. I always make sure to hit the market when I am back in WI. I just love strolling around the square for an hour or so, Ice cold fresh squeezed citrus bomb in hand, nibbling on farm fresh cheese curds and buying delicious vegetables before tucking a bouquet of beautiful wildflowers and a loaf of fresh bread in my basket before I left for home.

Now I run into Panera for my loaf of French bread and grab my flowers at Publix before stopping at the tiny Farmers Market at the park for 10 minutes to grab my tomatoes and cucumbers for the week. Not quite the same, but, oh well.

I got everything I needed.

This time of year, I can usually find blackberries. Mr. Mac, who also sells at the monthly Farmisan Market had these beautiful berries for sale. I bought some from him last week as well for a cobbler. But this week I decided to make blackberry freezer jam. There is nothing like homemade jam with toast on a cold morning in January.

I seem to have gotten the hang of making jam. This batch turned out perfectly.

I also decided to make a batch of refrigerator pickles. Making pickles is as much art as it is cooking. They are so pretty in their jar.

My husband brought our kids to Atlanta to visit family today, so I made my favorite summertime dinner for myself. French bread with homemade garlic and herb ricotta cheese and a slice of fresh tomato. I am so addicted to homemade ricotta right now. I use Ina Garten's recipe, unbelievably easy and so good.

I figured since I started my Saturday at the Farmers Market, I should end it with Farmers Market. Homemade blackberry jam on New York style cheesecake. Now that is a good way to end the day.

Hope you are having a great weekend!

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