Flanked by piles of squash, buckets of greens and crates of little cucumbers ready for pickling on Sunday, the feeling of home swelled around me as I filled my canvas bag with veggies, hand pies, bread and cheese.
As a new transplant to Maine (for the record, I am from away … and I come from the flatlands), I am finding my place in my new Bangor community. Farms and farmers markets are something deeply ingrained in my daily experience, so getting to know the farm scene is pretty high on my priority list for living here.
Back in Connecticut, my kids practically grew up in the dirt at my cousin’s organic farm where they’d visit the chickens, race around the fields and play elaborate games of imagination. Our eggs almost exclusively came from the farm, and our veggies in the summer were almost all from a farm share. Whatever else we needed in summertime was often bought at the local Tuesday farmers’ market where I would talk babies and greens with Patrick from Waldingfield Farm (an actor-farmer married whose farm produces the best Grade B Maple Syrup I’ve ever had) and drop by Beldotti Bakery for their unbelievably good basil pesto, handmade fresh mozzarella and tender, crusty loaves of semolina bread. The gentlemen from Beldotti’s were always at the ready with samples for my children and me.
On our last Tuesday in Connecticut, the local farmers market opened for the season and we were there for one last goodbye to the foods and farmers we’ve come to know over the years.
But here? I am new. And I don’t yet have those food connections. But the Bangor Farmers’ Market gave me that feeling that these things will come. Perhaps someday soon, I will know the folks from Lor Farm and The Daily Bread on a first name basis.
I expect that my family and I will make weekly trips to the Sunday market. There’s nothing quite like farm fresh produce that’s been plucked from the Earth at its ripest.
That’s something I need wherever we live.
I’ve been told there are several farmers’ markets in the area worth visiting, including one in Orono.
Fortunately, the Bangor Daily News has a brand new tool to help me — and you! — find all the Maine farmers markets in your area. You can search by town, pull up a handy map and find out the market hours all with the new farmers market finder tool.
Have a market you think I should visit? Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me what’s special about it (bonus points if there’s fresh seafood to be had too) … and I will check as many out as I can.
And if there’s something I need to try, tell me that too.