A Day at the Durham Farmers’ Market

When I find myself in a new city, I like to visit a local farmers’ market. Supporting local growers, producers, chefs, artists and artisans makes me feel more connected to the city. Talking to the vendors, browsing local produce, tasting prepared foods and interacting with other market-goers teaches me about the area. Beyond that, though, I just love getting outside and eating delicious food.

Despite attempting to do this in cities I travel to or spend whole summers in, I never went to the Durham Farmers’ Market until last month. I think, with the knowledge that it would still be there until I graduated, I was in no rush to go. Now, as a junior, thinking a lot about how quickly the last almost-3 years have gone and how quickly my last year will go, I thought I needed to go.

With beautiful weather and the desire to put off my work, a Saturday was the ideal day to wander around and purchase some excellent food. Every product I tried was excellent. The variety of produce, prepared foods and crafts was so fun to explore. I set myself on a budget, something I had to do given how excited I was to try everything and how pricey some of the products can be. I wound up purchasing four products:

  1. Rocket’s Robiola from Boxcarr Handmade Cheese: This is possibly my favorite cheese since I tasted it 2 years ago. Every one of Boxcarr’s cheeses ios incredible and I highly recommend all of them.
  2. Sauté-at-home Yucca Gnocchi from Soul Cocina Triangle: This is a plant-based, Latin-American kitchen. I cooked the gnocchi and it was tasty, but with my expectations of being identical to gnocchi, I wasn’t the biggest fan. I’m going to try it again with a different sauce and slightly different cooking style to see what I think!
  3. Triple-Berry Jam from Bonlee Grown Farm: This farm sells jams, pickles, honey, eggs, flowers, other produce and more. I can’t wait to try this jam on toast or with the cheese I purchased!
  4. A big cup of Sweet Tea from RomanzTea: After a long morning outside, I was in the mood for some sweet tea, something I don’t drink very often. He brews a special blend of the typically black tea with many herbal teas, sweetens it with a homemade, fruit-derived sweetener, and adds some mint leaves. It truly is the best sweet tea I have ever had!

Outside from these purchases, some of my favorite products I tried that I plan to buy in future weekends were the salsas mocajete and habanero from Cilantro Artisan Foods, beautiful and simple pottery by Joe Sink, and the orange hazelnut butter from Simon Says Spread This. I highly recommend the Durham Farmers’ Market, even if you just want to walk around, listen to some music (see a video featuring ‘Pick-Fil-A’), and see what people are producing all within 70 miles of Durham.

Pick-Fil-A wrapping up a song

One thought on “A Day at the Durham Farmers’ Market

  1. I have always been an avid fan of farmers markets as well. Having grown up in NYC, whenever I would travel to smaller towns I would always keep an eye out for local farmers markets. I love the interactive nature of farmer’s markets—stopping at stands and getting a peak at the products that these people make a living growing and crafting. After reading this, I was inspired to revisit the Durham farmer’s market myself and took a trip there this morning. I was refreshed to see all of the local foods and goodies available to sample and purchase. I actually ended up sampling the cheeses from Boxcar, the authentic salsa’s from Cilantro, and the ginger candies and turmeric syrups from the images in your blog post as I made my rounds around the flourishing farmer’s market. In the end, my friends and I purchased a log of jalapeño goat cheese, a loaf of sour dough bread, a basket of the most ripe strawberries, and a generously frosted cinnamon bun—all absolutely delicious!
    Also here’s a tip: if you go to the Durham Farmer’s Market towards the end when it is closing (around 11:30am) all of the baked goods and breads go on sale (kind of dangerous)!

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