And beware the herbs at farmers markets. “You’ll see herbs that are wilted, because they waited a few days and didn’t want to refrigerate them,” says Cervantes. You might as well be buying already-stale bread.
Talk to the farmers
Both chefs stressed that talking to farmers was the best way to get the most out of shopping at a farmers market. After all, it’s not like the people working at the supermarket are also the ones growing the food. You need to groom your chosen farmer-friend like you’re planning on asking him or her to the prom. So don’t be shy; ask about when produce was harvested, what conditions are like for animals, and even for recipe advice.
Build connections to get the freshest seafood
Getting the freshest seafood can be tough if you’re not near the coasts, especially since many farmers markets don’t run every day. Vendors at smaller markets sometimes have no choice but to serve up catches that have been sitting on ice for a day, which you’ll want to avoid. Talk to fishermen who bring their catches to market, and get info on when they were caught.