Monday, June 14, 2010

Biggest and Best in the Upper Midwest

Over Memorial Day weekend, Justin and I ventured North to visit some family and friends in Minnesota. My best friend Heidi, who is a Minneapolitan and whom we visited last fall, is always gushing about the goods she gets at too-good-to-be-true prices from the Minneapolis farmer's market, so when the rooster crowed Sunday morning, Justin and I met up with her and her boyfriend to wander around the self proclaimed largest open air market in the upper midwest (see photo).

After touring around the place, I must agree with the sign.

There were rows and rows of vendors selling all sorts of yumminess at buy-like-there's-no-tomorrow-prices. From local vegetables, freshly plucked from gardens...

to herbs that smelled so good they could almost induce an aroma coma...

to plump fruit and berries, just begging to be eaten.

You can even find interesting oddities such as this purple basil. (Well, at least I've never seen purple basil, have you?)

The insane part is that the majority of the items for sale are grown by local folks, which turns yummy-food-smiles into pat-myself-on-the-back-for-supporting-my-neighbors-smile. Not to mention, the beautiful way some vendors spruce up their packaging. Nothing says "hello sunshine" like some pansy faces, am I right?

But of course, flanking the end of the good-for-you fruits and veggies is another row of cooked food such as hot caramel corn, pulled pork, and mini donuts (yum-o!). Heidi is particularly fond of the fresh squeezed orange juice, which I must say is probably the best darn orange juice I have ever had.

The last, but certainly not least, row capping the end of the market is what I call gourmet alley. There you can sample olives, olive oil, nuts, spreads, bread, and even homemade soap.

Unfortunately, after perusing through all the goodies, all four of us left with empty hands. Surprising, no? Well, in our defense, we had a full day ahead of us and didn't think the produce would last in a hot and humid car all afternoon. But, now that I've experienced it, when I talk to Heidi and she is slurping down an orange juice, I'll be even more jealous. In fact, it sounds delicious right now.


  1. Not to make you jealous, but I went there this weekend and came home with LOADS of stuff. I bought herbs to grow outside, peach brie, cranberry cheddar cheese and yummy noodles. And yes, I also had an amazing glass of orange juice upon arriving. :)

  2. Uh yum, peach brie, cranberry cheddar cheese, cheese, cheese, cheese...


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