Friday, April 6, 2012

Veggie Crackers A Bust--But The Farmer's Market Was INCREDIBLE!

April 5, 2012

I am really tired right now, but I've had a great day, although it seemed like there was a conspiracy to kep it from being so good.

First, I was up after only 4 hours of sleep this mornin', and I got some basic chores done that only I could do before we left. Obie and I left Brian in the arms of Morpheous, and we headed to Eleanor's.

But NOT before I checked on my new batch of veggie crackers.

They were crisp, smelled wonderful, looked great, and from what little I got to taste, had fabulous flavor.

Unfortunately...they were also hopelessly STUCK to the wax paper I had used to line the trays.

I had read in WARMING UP TO LIVING FOODS By Elysa Markowitz that you could use waxed paper in the dehydrator. Ah well, they will help in the compost pile. I'm just learnin', and I refuse to get depressed over ANY kind of food.

Okay, MAYBE I would get depressed over CHUNKY MONKEY ice cream, if I could never have it again....

Movin' on!

We got to Eleanor's around 8:00 a.m., piled inyo her truck and headed for the Farmer's Market in Dallas.

I love this place. Fresh, beautiful, delicious fruits and veggies from near and far, set out in gorgeous displays under cool canopies. Produce vendors callin' out the specials of the day, and some of them follow you down the aisles, practically BEGGIN' you to take a sample of the goods they sell. We noshed on pieces of apple, blueberries, grapes, tomatoes so fresh you could smell the sunshine they grew in, onions both sweet and hot, cantelope and watermelon. There was even this one little citrus called a 'honey orange', that was out of this world--it actually tastes like someone dipped an orange into honey.

We went to our favorite wholesale vendor, and as usual, we said we wanted our 50 pound bags of carrots. We were told that the truck hadn't arrived yet, but it was due in two hours.

Eleanor, Obie and I figured we could easily spend two hours, soe we went ahead and made out our order for a case of lemons, tomatoes, Red Delicious apples, a 50 pound bag of potatoes for my family, a case of sweet potatoes that honestly looked like footballs, and a few other goodies. We said we would check back in two hours, and then we went in search of more goodies.

I found this AMAZIN' vendor that carries all kinds of mushrooms--imagine 5 POUNDS of Portobello mushrooms for only $12! 11 pounds of asparagus for only $20. It boggles tha mind that there is such bounty so close, and folks don't take advantage of it.

We visited a nursery, and I bought 4 roma tomatoe plants, 4 jalapeno plants, and a big pot of mint. Eleanor added some plants for her landscapin' projects, and Obie had a ball sniffin' all the herbs that grew.

Oh--I gotta tell on him for a moment.

We were lookin' at the cases of lemons, tryin' to decide if we wanted the big lemons, or the smaller ones. The vendor cut one of each in half, so we could smell them. I held up one of the small halves for Obie to smell, and he LICKED it!

You should have seen his face--it almost turned inside out! I handed him the lemon, and told him, "hey, you know the rules--no food goes to waste. You licked it--it's your's, EAT IT."

I'll give him credit--he actually tried.

I let him suffer a bit, then told him to throw it away. I asked him if he was gonna do that again. He shuddered and and said, "Nuh UH!"

Okay--back to our food huntin'.

I found a stevia plant for $2.50, so I got it. This little plant is wonderful. Even just a leaf off of the plant is so sweet, you could snack on them alone.

Alright, two hours have passed, so we go back to get our carrots.

The truck stil isn't there. We say we are goin' to lunch, and will check back. We found a little seafood place, and the food was good. We checked back....

You guessed it, no truck.

In one of the buildin's that house smnall shops, we found a lady who sells handmade pastas of all types--includin' a CHOCOLATE one! There were also little tamale shops, a place called AIN'T NO MO!, and they sell a little butter cake that is to DIE for! There is a deli, and a spice shop run by two of the sweetest Indian ladies. They have all KINDS of spices--I just HAD to buy a bag of their powdered ginger--it smelled sweet, pungent, and with a hint of heat. My next batch of ginger snaps will ROCK, I tell you!

Finally, around 2:30, I said, "Look, I gotta go. We still have to go to the Indian Market , and I have to get home to feed my critters."

We went back ONE MORE TIME, and still no truck. We explained that we just couldn't wait anymore, and we purchased our order. The guys who run the store couldn't stop apologizin' for the truck bein' stuck somewhere in traffic.

We told them not to worry--we were not angry. Well, they appreciated the fact that we didn't yell or cuss them. In fact, they added an extra bag of apples to our order, insisted we take a bag of sweet red onions, and on top of that--when we got to Eleanor's and began to divide the produce into our individual boxes--we found that they had sold us a case of gorgeous Romaine lettuce at the PLAIN iceberg lettuce price.

Now come ON--that was customer service above and WAY beyond what many folks would have done.

We headed out to the BOLLYWOOD grocery, where we purchsed more fenugreek seed. I had never been there, and I was introduced to the most CHARMING man. He was the owner of the grocery, and his accent, manners, and humor are delightful. He invited us back to have lunch at the little restaraunt in the back of the store.

We finally headed back home, and by a miracle--we never once got stuck in traffic, ecen though it was rush hour. We got back to Eleanor's, divvied up the 'loot', and Obie and I made it home in time to feed all the critters.

I have all our fod put away, and we enjoyed a supper made from the ingredients we bought today. The house is cleaned up, Obie is in bed, and I am next door postin, and waitin' for Brian to come home.

Ya know, I was sorta dumbfounded over how the vendors were urprised thet we didn't flip out and get mad about the carrots. Makes me wonder just how many folks DO cuss them and yell over something that they had no control over.

Yes, it was annoyin' to have to keep waitin'--but if we hadn't we would never have met all those fabulous people, or found all the great food bargains.

I look at it this way--we had an adventure, and we 'traveled' to distant lands through the warm personalities of the people we met. Sure, I could have gotten angry, acted like a....well, you get my drift.

It wouldn't have improved the situation one bit, in fact, it would have made it worse. I would have looked like a grouchy nutcase, the vendors would not have been as sweet about it as they were, and we certainly wouldn't have received the blessin' of such a good discount, or the free produce they gave us.

And I STILL wouldn't have gotten my carrots--they would have still been stuck in traffic somehwere on a Good Friday.

Who know why the truck never made it there? It didn't, and so what? I still had a nice time with my son and my friend, I found good bargains to help feed my famly the best food I can, and I met people with whom I share a love of fine foods from many places.

As far as I'm conmcerned--that was WORTH buyin' carrots at the local gorcery store for another week.

Well, I got chores. Later ya'll.
© 2012 by Evelyn Edgett