On the 4th Saturday of each month, nearly all year, a little town called Brigg about 10 miles from where I live holds a farmers’ market. This may not seem special to most people – most rural towns have such markets – but in a time where small shops are closing in favour of supermarket chains, this is my only way to get in touch with some of the people making my food.
This month was probably the first time I’ve made it since spring due to work, but was pleasantly suprised due to the many samples available. In fact, I went before my breakfast, and came home full, after sampling the many cheeses, jams, etc on offer.
The theme this time was that each stall holder selected their “speciality” product, and had samples available for the public to try. Towards the end of the day, the public (shoppers, such as myself) voted for their favourite product, with one of the voters to be chosen to receive a hamper filled with each of the speciality product. That person wasn’t me.
Incidentally, I voted for the smoked venison, whereas my wife voted for a 1yr matured soft cheese from Lincolnshire Poacher. Soon after voting though, I changed my mind – I should have voted for the sourdough bread. Oh well!
We came home £30 worse for wear, having bought a fairly random bag of goodies – none of which really work together to create a full meal, but appealed to us none the less. Here’s what we managed to buy:
- An olive green Organic Pumpkin from Bridge Farm
- A fillet of Smoked Salmon from Smiths Smokery
- A wedge of Lincolnshire Poacher 1yr matured Cheese
- A loaf of Sourdough Bread from Trueloaf Bakery
- A Chocolate Earthquake cake from Martha’s Pantry
- A Carrot Cake from Martha’s Pantry
- A Tickled Pink Beetroot Cake from Pink Pig Organic Farm
- Wild Boar Sausages with Yorkshire Beer from Round Green Farm Venison Company
- Soft Blue Cheese from Cote Hill Farm
I’d recommend anyone, wherever you are in the world to support your local Farmers’ Markets; this is how you learn where your food comes from. I was pleasantly surprised to find that these people just love to talk about how they make their food (particularly the bearded man shown above), and will answer any questions.
If you don’t have a market such as this, visit a farm shop if available. Whatever you do, ensure buy fresh produce from people who know what they are selling to you.