farmers market @ FERN community garden- fremantle
‘Come, come, have a piece of fruit for energy while walking around…’
The morning at the Western Farmers’ Market has gotten off to a good start. Enthusiasm is in the air – it’s only 8.30am on a Sunday morning, the market is buzzing and the parking is well and truly on its way to chaotic. There are stalls selling raw honey and tables laden with gluten free goodies. There are bags of home grown fruit, startlingly red rhubarb and bundles of poker hot chillis.
Saved by caffeine – the Fiore coffee cart.
A little weary, we make a beeline for the Fiore coffee cart, which is doing a roaring trade soothing frazzled parents and morning-after sufferers. The coffee is creamy, aromatic and tasty. Gulping down the coffee, the next thought is food. Crepes, in fact. I love watching crepes being cooked on gas powered griddles, and for $5.50, I have a breakfast of sweet, local strawberries and brown sugar, swaddled by a soft crepe and whipped cream. Other gustatory options included bacon, spinach & egg rolls, muffins and pastries.
There is a particular bread stall here called ‘Bread for Life’. The range of bread here is amaaaazing. There are organic loaves, sour dough varieties, biodynamic breads, vegetable breads as well as baguettes, croissants and pastries. Be sure to drop in on Bread for Life when you come here.
The Bread for Life ladies!
Bread for Life has some of the most delectab;e pastries I’ve seen to date.
Baramba Beef are at the Western Farmers’ Market every 1st and 3rd Sunday of each month. Biodynamic beef and hogget are available in frozen packs, with mince and sausages available too (you can order online on their website). Demeter certified, Baramba’s meats come from happy, free range animals padding around in nearby Gingin. Buying straight from the stall is cheaper (if you need an extra excuse to make a visit) than buying similar products from a retail outlet, making it quite affordable. Baramba beef is also at City Farm’s Organic Markets on every 1st and 3rd Saturday. Western Farmers’ Market also plays host to free range pork and lamb vendors, though we did not see them during our visit.
Baramba’s organic and biodynamic beef. Happy cows, happy beef.
On to fresh produce. Here we are definitely spoilt for choice and, most importantly, prices. The cost of fresh produce here is competitive and being a farmers’ market – exceptionally fresh. Most, if not all the produce was either plucked from the tree or pulled from the ground the day before – and that makes it extremely good value, compared to say, the big supermarkets where the produce has probably toured the country before getting to the shelves. The food is simply fresher and keeps a lot longer. I love the idea of buying fruit and vegetables from some one’s hobby farm. The fruit might be smaller, but it’s crunchier and sweeter. It might not be organic, but most small growers shy away from using chemicals on their crops. I’d rather reduce food miles and support local growers.
In season fruit for a few bucks per bag. (In the top left corner there’s honey – there’s a lot of honey for sale at these markets too)
Freshly cut, well priced flowers.
There was a stall selling just plums and they smelled incredible. (I bought some of those plums for Mum and now she wants me to go back and buy 5 bags for her. They were that good..!) It’s plum season and we saw quite a few varieties for sale at the stalls. Most of the fruit were sold in small bags and you can usually have a taste. There were freshly dug Delaware potatoes, round zucchinis and tree ripened mangoes (which were extremely popular!). There was a stall selling bags of big passionfruit for $5 each and another selling four varieties of Bridgetown garlic. I also procured a bag of small nashi pears for $3 and a bag of apples for $2. Bargain. Other hot buys were bunches of rhubarb, free range eggs ($4 a dozen), creamy yellow ears of corn and bags of stone fruit.
One thing I noticed about Western Farmers’ Market are the really friendly stallholders. There are plenty of hello’s, tastings and the sole prerogative is to spread the love of fresh produce. The fruit and veggie guys help with bagging the produce (a real help when I was trying to weasel a gigantic metre long leek into my grocery bag) and there are lots of smiles. The stall holders are happy to talk about their produce and that translates into a jolly and interested atmosphere. I heard it gets very busy at these markets (around 10am, just imagine the parking) so best to come early. You know what they say, early bird gets the worm (or good veggies in this case).
Western Farmers’ Market NOW AT:
Palmyra Primary School, 60 McKimmie Street, Palmyra WA 6157
Open every Sunday 7.30am – 12.30pm
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