Saturday, July 7, 2007

Off to the market

Saturday is market day. I wake up early, walk out on Mission, and take the bus over Bernal Heights to the Alemany Farmer's Market. Usually there are a few other market-goers on the 24 Divisadero--they are the people carrying empty bags.

Unlike the pristine and pricey Ferry Building, beloved by tourists who gawk much and buy little, the Alemany is definitely a market for locals. There are fewer organic options, but prices are much lower. You'll see little Asian ladies picking through piles of greens, old men with denim backpacks full of long beans, couples eating pork mole tamales at the All Star table.

I typically browse both aisles before committing to a purchase so that I can get a sense of price, quality and seasonality. If only one stall has strawberries, cherries, or artichokes, it is not a good sign.

Berries and stone fruit have been promising for the last few weeks. Today I bought apricots (conventional, $1/lb) for this week's jam. Next week I might pick up some of these Emerald Beauty plums.

Then I'm off to Rainbow to buy bulk Mason jars and sugar. The exotic life of a jam-maker.


Sheila said...

I am very impressed by your jam-making prowess. I am most impressed, however, by the second sentence of this post. You wake up early???? On a Saturday???? My awe regarding you is now boundless.

colleen said...

Have to get there early to get the good stuff! I'm usually there by 8. Once I shopped at the market, traveled home to set up the chopped fruit in some sugar, and was at a 9 a.m. Pilates class. All via bus.

Commitment. Or lunacy?

KennethSF said...

I told the Jam Queen I wanted to tag along on one of her fruit quests. Then I found out how early I'd have to wake up for the mission: "The crack of dawn," I believe, was how she put it. I'm not sure I'd rise that early even for the Holy Grail.