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Kalyn's Kitchen

Salt Lake City Farmer’s Market Opens with a Crowd of Food Lovers

Finally, after I’ve been having farmers market envy for weeks, the Salt Lake City Downtown Alliance Farmers Market opened this weekend. The market is held in a huge park on the west side of Salt Lake called Pioneer Park. In years past this place was most famous as a hangout for homeless people looking for place to sleep, but having the market there, as well as some great food destinations like Tony Caputo’s Market and Big City Soup has done a lot to help revitalize the area. Of course there’s also the love-it-or-hate-it Gateway Shopping Mall nearby, an outdoor mall with stores, restaurants, movies, Clark Planetarium, and the famous Olympic Fountain. Even though Gateway has now made it into Wikipedia, and it’s a great place for tourists, I don’t go there much. And since the Farmers Market is celebrating 15 years this summer, I give the farmers market all the credit for turning this area into a fun place to hang out.

At the Farmers Market I put my camera on AUTO and have fun, but these pictures give you a taste of our market. Later in the year I don’t visit the market much since I have my own garden. But yesterday I bought arugula, radishes, white radishes, Purple Plum radishes, and Broccoli raab. I’ll have fun with those ingredients, so when you see this charming icon, which Alanna is sharing with food bloggers everywhere, you’ll know I’m using farmers market ingredients.

This week I also got a generous sample of cheese from Beehive Cheese Company, a local Utah creamery who has gotten great reviews for the quality of their cheese. The cheese they gave me to try was Full Moon Raw Milk Cheddar, which I’ll probably devour before I have the chance to use it in a recipe. I loved the flavor and consistency of this cheese which is creamy with just the right bite of cheddar flavor.

Now here are other things that caught my eye at the market this week.

Our market aims to please. If you get tired of carrying those heavy sacks of fruit or veggies, you can check them and pick them up later!

I can’t wait to eat the lovely baby arugula I got from this farmer. I’m just sorry I can’t remember which farm this was!

A farm from my home town was selling French Breakfast radishes, two bunches for $1.00. You can’t beat that price or the quality of the radishes.

In Utah about 50% of the population are Mormons, and if you’re a devout Mormon you refrain from drinking coffee. People who are Mormons but don’t follow all the church teachings are called Jack Mormons, hence the funny name for a local brand of coffee. Any Utah readers know where the name Jack Mormon came from? (Edit – Thanks to former Utahn Anna from Anna’s Cool Finds who pointed me to the Wikipedia definition of Jack Mormon.)

Not a good photo, but this was something I hadn’t noticed at the farmer’s market in years past, and there were actually two booths offering henna body painting this year.

My hands-down favorite of all the non-food offerings were these lawn ornaments made by Utah artist Dave Malone. I couldn’t manage to capture a photo without lots of people in the background, but I loved these inventive figures made of iron and pieces of rock arranged in charming shapes. (Sigh, if only I had more money to buy art.)

I bought my white radishes and the lovely Purple Plum radishes from this farmer from Zoe’s Garden who was friendly and helpful. This local farm plants over 600 varieties of crops, many of them heirlooms, and offers CSA shares.

I had breakfast before I went, but next time I’d love to try the Sudanese food from this stall. Luckily a friendly local allowed me to photograph his food (below) which did look quite tasty .

That’s my farmers market tour for this time. If any Utah readers were also at the farmer’s market this week, please leave a comment and tell us what you got.
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    18 Comments on “Salt Lake City Farmer’s Market Opens with a Crowd of Food Lovers”

  1. i love ur pictures. and i love farmers markets… as a photography addict myself, ur doing very good

  2. Rachel, good timing. The 2008 market just opened yesterday but I didn’t make it for the opening day this year.

  3. Thanks for the great SLC Farmer’s Market post. I’ve stumbled upon your blog while doing reasearch for a children’s book. I hope to visit the market when I’m in town next weekend.

  4. Ilva, wish I could bring you along in person!

    Wendy, we are lucky to have such a great market.

    Maria, love to meet you there. I think I’m going this Saturday, but not positive because I think someone in my family is making a surprise visit to Utah.

    Deb, thanks, but I can tell you that all my friends are laughing their heads off that you said I’m always so cheerful and helpful. Helpful, usually. Cheerful, not always!

  5. Thanks for answering my questions Kalyn! You’re always so cheerful and helpful.


  6. Great pictures of the market! I was there on Saturday and it was fun. I am excited to have the market back…maybe we can meet up sometime!

  7. Fantastic! I’m very jealous. The farmers markets in our area are on a much smaller scale. To visit one with the range you captured would be very exciting!

  8. Thanks Kalyn for bringing us along to the market, I love the photos!

  9. Anna, thanks for the tip about Wikipedia having a definition for Jack Mormon! I’ll add the link. The graphic is for any blogger to use, so if you cook something with farmers market ingredients, feel free to use it.

  10. What fun! I love Farmer’s Markets and what a great idea to put a graphic when you use ingredients from it!
    There is a Wikipedia definition of Jack Mormon: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_Mormon

    Seems to have morphed over time like most things.

  11. Julie, fun hearing from another blogger who is close by! I’m going to add a section for Utah blogs, so I’ll add you when I do.

  12. I didn’t know you were near me! We went, and while it wasn’t anything like the San Francisco farmers market I got to go to last week, it was still so refreshing to have our market back! We bought peas, bread, cheese, and radishes.

  13. Deb, the market lasts until October 20. I haven’t heard anything about where the name “Jack Mormon” came from. Maybe I should google it.

  14. Thanks for the great detailed post! I’m always trying to find fun things to do when I visit my in-laws in Sandy. How long does it run?

    Oh, and did you find out about the Jack Mormon name?

  15. Simona, it’s actually not a new market, this is the 15 year anniversary. Sorry if I gave that impression. I was reflecting on how it’s changed the area over the years. And yes, the idea of checking your shopping bags is a great one!

    Christine, thanks, and me too!

    Erika, I thought there would be other(non-California) bloggers who could related to the Farmer’s Market envy. Finally! Have fun next Saturday.

  16. Ah! Talk about farmer’s market envy! Mine opens next Saturday, I cannot wait!

  17. Wonderful post, Kalyn. I’m so glad that your market has finally opened this year.

  18. It is very nice to see a new farmers’ market start up. I am glad you will have this fun place to visit every week. I particularly like the idea of checking your bags while you shop more. Looking at your photos I also got inspired to write about arugula.