From Fresh Market to Table in Minutes

Summer signaled the opening of many local farmers markets in South Fulton—I get excited when I see those market stands! From bountiful fresh produce grown on nearby farms and homemade desserts to locally produced arts and crafts, these markets offer up a sensory experience that you just cannot find in the grocery stores. Visit one of the area’s local markets on any given day, and you are likely to find not only fruits, vegetables, and herbs harvested at the peak of the season, but you may also experience live music and cooking demonstrations as well as find beautiful arts and crafts, making it a trip that offers something for everyone.

I recently visited the East Point Farmers Market, which is open year-round every Wednesday from 4 to 7 p.m. at Old Fire Station #1 in downtown East Point. My sons and I spent a couple of hours sampling and purchasing many goodies, like black bean and corn quesadillas prepared by an onsite chef, rich seafood bisque from Chef Maurice Chavis of Unmerited Flavor, tasty Cranberry Almond Couscous from Rapid Gourmet, locally-grown romaine lettuce from Truly Living Well Farms, and a thirst-quenching lemonade from It’s Gotta B Lemonade. We ended our visit on a sweet note with a slice of creamy Strawberry Cheesecake from Baked Wright Bakery.

Since it was near dinner time, it made perfect sense to pick up a few items to cook before heading home. The beauty of shopping at a fresh market is that you can buy just about everything you need for a weeknight dinner or special dinner party. My market-inspired recipe features fresh corn, basil, and tomatoes—staple ingredients during the summer season. Pair this easy-to-prepare side dish with your favorite grilled chicken or salmon recipe for a quick meal that bursts with the flavors of the season.

The next time you have a few spare hours, get out and enjoy a farmers market near you. Be sure to visit the market’s website for updates on vendors, market dates, and activities.
6 Tips to Visiting Your Local Farmers Market

  • Arrive early. The best products are more likely to be more plentiful the earlier you go. You may find more deals but less variety toward the end of the market when vendors are packing up for the day.
  • Tote earth-friendly reusable bags and a small cooler. The cooler will come in handy for perishable items—produce, eggs, cheese or dairy products—that need to stay cool until you get home.
  • Take a walk. Stroll through the market to survey and sample items from the vendors and then make your purchases. You want to find the best products at the best price, and you will also avoid overbuying.
  • Bring cash in small bills. Some vendors accept credit and debit cards, but cash is king at the local markets. Depending on the market, SNAP participants may also receive double benefits to purchase eligible SNAP products at the market.
  • Shop fresh and local. Buy what is in season and items grown close to home. Our local farmers benefit directly from this support.
  • Connect. Talk with the farmers and ask questions about their products. They are a wealth of knowledge and love to share tips on the freshest produce and even how to prepare many of their products.

Find plentiful vegetables and herbs grown on local farms at the market.

Where to Find Your Local Markets

East Point Farmers Market

2757 East Point Street

East Point, GA 30344

Wednesdays    4-7 p.m.

EastPointFarmersMarket.com

Green4Life Mobile Market

Greenbriar Mall

2841 Greenbriar Parkway

Atlanta, GA 30331

Saturdays    11-4 p.m.

Green4LifeAtl.com

Fairburn Farmer’s Market

Stage and Courtyard

15 W. Broad Street

Fairburn, GA 30213

Fridays, May 19 -Aug. 11 5-8 p.m.

FairburnFarmersMarket.com

Serenbe Farmers Market

9110 Selbourne Lane

Chattahoochee Hills, GA 30268

Saturdays, April 8-Nov. 18 9-1 p.m.

SerenbeFarms.com

Need a quick side dish? Try Rapid Gourmet Cranberry Almond Couscous Mix and other high-quality products.

Quench your thirst with fresh watermelon lemonade from It’s Gotta B Lemonade while you shop.

Homemade desserts from Baked Wright will satisfy your sweet tooth.

No time to cook? Take home creamy Seafood Bisque from Chef Maurice of Unmerited Flavor.

Fuel up with locally produced nuts, granola, and energy bars from Pure Bliss Organics.

Gilliam’s Garden carries a variety of produce, spices, and eggs.