Farmer’s Market Picks and Where to Find Them
Taking advantage of farmer’s markets is a great way to shop sustainably, support local businesses, and purchase in-season fruits and veggies. With springtime imminent, communities can expect outdoor farmer’s markets to start opening up and offering local produce that we missed during the winter months. Make your weekly trip to the market a breeze by following this guide to seasonal produce! As an added bonus, check out three quick recipes you can enjoy with your market finds.
Seasonal Fruits and Veggies in the Midwest
This handy list of harvest times for fruits and veggies in Minnesota will make you a farmers market pro. Most of the produce included below has a growing season that lasts for a few months, and many can be harvested as long as there is warm weather. Check with sellers and farmers at your favorite market to find out how long each food will be in season.
April - Parsnips, mint
May - Asparagus, radishes, rhubarb, spinach
June - Beets, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, corn, green onions, lettuce, pea greens, raspberries, strawberries
July - blueberries, chard, cucumber, eggplant, green beans, herbs, peas, peppers, potatoes, summer squash, tomatoes, zucchini
August - Apples, basil, bitter melon, Brussels sprouts, cantaloupes, cauliflower, celery, garlic, leeks, melons, onions, turnips, watermelon, winter squash
Find a list of Twin Cities markets here, or go to your local government’s website to find one nearest to you. Once you’ve hit up your local spot, put your produce haul to good use with recipes such as roasted carrots and parsnips, radish crostini, or a raspberry spinach smoothie.
Roasted Carrots & Parsnips - Roasting veggies is an excellent way to make them more palatable. For this, you’ll need three or four of both parsnips and carrots, one tbsp of olive oil, and dashes of salt, pepper, coriander, and cumin.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Scrub, peel, and cut parsnip and carrots. Cut off the stem and then cut lengthwise to form even-sized sticks.
- Toss in a bowl with olive oil, salt, pepper, and a mix of ground coriander and cumin.
- Spread parsnips and carrots out on a baking sheet. Roast in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until tender, tossing halfway through.
Radish Crostini - Fancy yet simple, and an excellent summer appetizer. You’ll need just seven or eight small radishes, a baguette, toppings such as premade pesto or brie, and sea salt.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray non-stick baking spray onto a baking sheet.
- Cut the baguette into ½ inch thick slices, about 24 slices, and lay on the baking sheet. Bake until golden brown, about four minutes each side.
- Scrub radishes and cut stems off of both ends. Thinly slice from end to end.
- Top baguette slices with pesto, radishes, sea salt and serve.
Raspberry Spinach Smoothie - A perfect summer treat. With a blender on hand, blend two cups of raspberries either fresh or frozen until smooth with one cup milk or milk substitute, ½ cup spinach, and a ½ tbsp of honey, nectar, or preferred natural sweetener. Pro tip: Put the liquid in the blender first to allow for smoother blending!
With recipes like these, visiting markets and shopping produce in the summer can be fun. Not only is it a great chance to get outside, it’s an opportunity to get to know local growers, try food samples such as honey and jam, and get excited about preparing healthy snacks in the warmer months ahead! Happy shopping, and bon appetit!