Minneapolis Farmers Market on the Mall brings fresh fare to downtown set

Categories: Farmers Markets

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Marsha Trainer
You gotta love the hustle of the Minneapolis Market on the Mall

While the artisanal farmers markets in our beloved Twin Cities are ridiculously charming, there is also a certain beauty to serving a wide swath of diverse people with a large selection of vegetables, goods, and bargains in a convenient location. That's where the Minneapolis Farmers Market on the Mall shines. As many as 60 vendors set up shop each Thursday smack in the middle of downtown Minneapolis and give busy professionals, convention center visitors, and everyone else wandering around Nicollet Mall a chance to pick up their fresh produce, herbs, and other items.

Sure, the Nicollet Mall Market can be lively and there are vendors who resell produce. But, if you embrace it, you just might find a cheap, healthy snack, a swell local seller, and a way to avoid yet another trip to the grocery store -- all during your coffee break.

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The Mill City Farmers Market: Strawberries, heirloom plants, Chef Shack donuts and more


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The St. Paul Farmers Market in Lowertown: The urban locavore's dream

Categories: Farmers Markets

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Marsha Trainer
Step off the sidewalk and into the St. Paul Farmers Market
The greater Twin Cities boasts a wealth of farmers markets in all shapes and sizes. Some are hip, some suburban, and others sprawl across huge expanses of macadam -- but each one owes a debt to the original upper Midwest growers' venue: the St. Paul Farmers Market.

Established in 1853 at Seventh and Wabasha Streets, the farmers market has moved frequently, but has always been in the downtown area of the city. These days, it's an urban oasis overflowing with flowers, berries, vegetables, meats, treats, honey, jellies, soaps, breads, sauces, salsas, live music, and even a joke-telling balloon animal maker. But don't be fooled by the sheer number of vendors -- all of the produce and related products are homegrown and home-produced by individually owned businesses. There's no reselling of items allowed, making the market a locavore's paradise with just the right amount of St. Paul's signature low-key friendliness.

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The small but mighty Kingfield Farmers Market: Sauerkraut, doughnuts, honey, and more


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The Mill City Farmers Market: Strawberries, heirloom plants, Chef Shack donuts, and more

Categories: Farmers Markets

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Grant Tillery
Saturnine skies don't stop farmers market fanatics.

Remember when that couple in Portlandia tracks down the exact origins -- and name -- of the chicken they order at a restaurant? Mill City is that kind of farmers market, one where customers want to know the name and life story of their poultry (and sometimes produce) and the vendors are eager to share. 

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The small but mighty Kingfield Farmers Market: Sauerkraut, doughnuts, honey, and more


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The small but mighty Kingfield Farmers Market: Sauerkraut, doughnuts, honey, and more

Categories: Farmers Markets
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Some of the market's young customers

The weather is warm and the crops are finally coming in. Rhubarb and seedlings are the order of the day, but it won't be long before we'll see sugar snap peas and berries at the vendors' stands.

The Hot Dish is setting out to explore area farmers markets and their unique offerings. First stop: Kingfield Farmers Market, a kid-friendly market where both Foxy Falafel and Bogart's Doughnuts got their start.

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New law eases food sampling restrictions at farmers markets


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New law eases food sampling restrictions at farmers markets

Categories: Farmers Markets

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Hannah Sayle

Recent legislation could make your farmers market experience a little less intimidating and a whole lot tastier.

The new law, which Governor Dayton approved earlier this month, will allow for cooking demonstrations and more extensive food sampling at farmers markets across the state. Formerly, local growers, artisans, and producers could only share unaltered samples of their products -- even a sprinkle of salt on a slice of locally grown tomato was verboten. Cooking demonstrations with samples were similarly off limits.

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Tricia Cornell on how to shop Minnesota's farmers markets like a pro [RECIPE]

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Tricia Cornell on how to shop Minnesota's farmers markets like a pro [RECIPE]

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The Minnesota Farmers Market Cookbook by Tricia Cornell

It seems like a shopping no-brainer: instead of getting in your gas guzzler and motoring across town to a big box grocery store for your imported asparagus from Peru or heads of garlic from China, you spend your hard-earned food budget at your neighborhood farmers market, supporting the farmers who live and work near you, and getting the best quality produce you can. So why are so many people intimidated by the farmers market, and so few see it as a legitimate place to shop and feed their families?

Tricia Cornell tackles this question in her latest book, The Minnesota Farmers Market Cookbook. Brimming with easy to accomplish recipes, the book also includes a comprehensive directory of farmers markets throughout the region, and helpful notes on each type of produce covered, so you can shop and cook with confidence. She took the time to chat with us about kohlrabi, the lies we've been told about stir fries, and all of her best tips for shopping locally like a pro.

The Hot Dish: Describe your new cookbook. What should readers expect?

Tricia Cornell: The most exciting thing about The Minnesota Farmers Market Cookbook is that it's organized by product, so that you can experience it the same way you experience the farmers market. You can either start at the beginning of a row and walk all the way through, or you can drop in and see what you see in front of you, or you can go straight to the beets if you need beets. So the book is organized that same way.

HD: Why did you decide to write this book? Your previous book, Eat More Vegetables, tackles the questions of what to do with your seasonal produce. How does this book differ from or expand on the first?

Well, that book was also a lot of fun to write. That was 100% my recipes and the foods that my family eats at home. This book allowed me to talk to a lot of really dedicated farmers and chefs, some of them practically celebrities here in Minnesota and some them ordinary farmers market fellows. And the other thing is that this book allowed me to get really in depth and geeky on each vegetable in a way that I wasn't able to do so much in the first book. I take you through how to find a vegetable, when to buy it, what to when you get it home, how to store it...So, yeah, it's a little geekier on the vegetable front.

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"Our very own Eat Street" at Taste of Northeast

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Rachelle Carlson
Brasa Premium Rotisserie at the Northeast Farmers Market
A number of Northeast's top eateries will pitch tents at the Northeast Farmers Market on Saturday, Oct. 5. for the third annual Taste of Northeast. Market-goers will be able to sample some of Northeast's tastiest bites for around $3 to $6 a plate.

"It's our very own Eat Street," says market manager Sarah Knoss. "We've seen a huge growth in more independent restaurants, sustainable, local spots. This is a foodie-type neighborhood."

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New Spyhouse Coffee in Northeast [PHOTOS]

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Chef Ian Gray at Minneapolis Farmers Market this weekend

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E. Katie Holm
Get a lesson in lamb this weekend from chef Ian Gray
A good cut of lamb is a lovely thing, but if you don't have a lot of practice cooking it, it can be daunting. Should it be roasted, grilled, or seared in a pan? How done is too done? What goes best as a side dish? All your burning, lamb-related questions will be answered this Saturday at the Minneapolis Farmers Market. Chef Ian Gray of the Gray House is teaming up with the Minnesota Lamb Growers Association to demo some techniques and share some of his own recipes. 

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Top 10 farmers markets in the Twin Cities
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Kingfield Farmers Market Rhubarb bake off this Sunday

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Minnesota grown bounty at Kingfield Farmer's Market

We've got it on good authority (i.e. the Weather Channel) that the weather will shine this weekend. Now is the time to grab this season by the sprouts and revel in this first season's produce. This Sunday, June 8, Kingfield Farmers Market will kick-off their bake-off competition where fans can cook up favorites from their kitchen and bring them to the market to compete for serious bragging rights and a $50 gift certificate. Market attendees also have the chance to taste the entries and crown a winner. Here's what you need to know before you go:

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Black Walnut Bakery: A first look

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Joy Summers
Dazzling downtown denizens, Sarah Botcher and Black Walnut Bakery

Sarah Botcher has been winning fans with her elegant take on homey desserts at Butcher & the Boar since they opened. She's recently decided to step out and start her own business. Every Thursday she sets up her stand, hangs out her card and shares her talents with downtown Minneapolis farmers market customers. We stopped by for a taste.

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