Tag: St. Paul Farmer’s Market
This Saturday marks the season opening of the St. Paul Farmers Market, so clear out the pantry and make some room in the crisper as you get ready to stock up on some of the best seasonal and local produce. Not only does a trip to the farmers market turn the perhaps tedious routine of weekly grocery shopping into a fun weekend excursion, but you’ll walk away with fresh fruits and vegetables at a fraction of the price you’ll find at the supermarket and newly fostered sense of community.
Locavores will bask in the fact that every farmer and producer selling at St. Paul’s downtown location comes from within a 75-mile radius of the city and boast organic, hormone-free and artisan goods. And doesn’t it just feel better to buy local?
Though the labyrinth of flowers stands, asparagus and green onion gardens and radish and rhubarb dens can seem daunting at first, don’t get overwhelmed by the bombardment of local. Make the farmers market a regular stop on your weekend to-do list, and soon you’ll be navigating like a pro with bags of healthy ingredients in tow.
Here are a few helpful tips to keep your farmers market experience a shrewd and happy one:
- Go Early: You know what they say about the early bird and it’s definitely true when it comes to the farmers market. By going early you can avoid heavy crowds and find the best selection.
- Survey the Lay of the Land: Size up what’s on hand by starting with a walk-through. The first stand you see might not always be your best bet. Stroll through the entire market before settling on your favorite goods. Visit the St. Paul Farmers Market’s webpage before you go to find out what’s in season and what vendors will be present.
- Bring Cash: Though it’s more common than it used to be with the addition of iPhones, not every vendor takes plastic, so make sure you have cash in your wallet or make a quick stop at the ATM before hand.
- Bring Your Own Bags: This isn’t necessarily a must, but most likely you have a cupboard stuffed with past grocery or canvas bags, might as well put them to good use – plus, it’s better for the environment.
- Ask a Farmer: Don’t be afraid to ask questions. The vendors are proud of their stock and most likely can’t wait to answer questions about their growing practices and shell out tips on how to best prepare their produce. Take full advantage of their knowledge.
- Buy in Bulk: Skip the excess packages, the best deals are found in bulk.
- Don’t Forget the Flowers: Some of the most beautiful floral arrangements are DIY, so don’t skip over the local flower section and after a long day at work, coming home to a nice flower-filled house will definitely fill you with bliss.
290 5th Street East
St. Paul MN
When it comes to sustainability, Heartland Restaurant has long been one of St. Paul’s finest proprietors of fine dining with a local and organic spin. Once tucked away in the Mac-Groveland location, Heartland recently made the jump to the district often likened to NY’s Soho, Lowertown. This allows it to highlight a relationship between its food and direct farm sources on display at the St. Paul’s Farmer’s Market across the street – a simple paring, yet an innovative idea that subtly links fresh produce with the final product, fresh cuisine. After all, there’s a mindset that goes hand-in-hand with a trip to the Farmer’s Market. While surrounded by delicious organic ingredients and friendly local farmers you may find yourself making tiny goals towards culinary self-improvement. You inevitably start daydreaming about creative recipes for that bundle of Swiss chard in your bag. You want to eat better, to live better…maybe you’ll even take up composting… It’s that steadfast mantra of better living through dining that flows from the hearts and fingers of the chefs in Heartland’s kitchen straight onto the meticulously arranged plates night after night.
One could call Heartland a foodie’s dream restaurant, because like the mainstays of dreams the nightly menu is constantly morphing, a new set of provocative dishes every evening. This ever-evolving carte, not only provides diners with a multifarious sample of a Heartland’s artistry, but also a mouthful of season-appropriate ingredients. On any given night, one can expect such delicacies as veal bacon glace de viande and Butterscotch duck egg pot de crème on the three course Fauna fixed menu ($40 per person) or chilled golden beet borscht and morel mushroom gnocchi on the Flora menu ($30 per person). Their upscale, chef-driven menus feature ingredients indigenous to the Upper Midwest, including wild boar, salmon, Rainbow trout, savory wild mushrooms and regional artisan cheeses. In past years, the restaurant has received soaring reviews from former City Pages’ food critic, Dara Moskowitz, Mpls/St. Paul Magazine’s, Andrew Zimmern, and the Star Trib’s Rick Nelson, who have praised it for a creative and ingenuous twist on simple heartland-style cooking.
Heartland owner, Executive Chef and James Beard Foundation’s 2010 Best Chef Midwest Finalist, Lenny Russo, continues to showcase the best modernized Midwestern cuisine in his newly opened downtown restaurant with a few added bonuses. One, the new space is located in the Market House building (a former shoe factory turned condos) and is significantly larger than the Mac-Groveland location. It features a 80-to-90 seat dining room that overlooks the farmer’s market, several chef tables that wrap around the exhibition kitchen, an in-house, watch-them-work butcher shop and a gourmet market (set to open at the end of August) that will feature Heartland’s own proprietary label products including house made charcuterie, jellies, and stocks and soups, plus and grab-and-go Heartland prepared lunch items.
Can self-improvement really start in the kitchen? After a visit to Heartland, we think you’ll be inspired to say yes. So, maybe start your day with a trip to the St. Paul Farmer’s market and end with a fabulous dinner at Heartland to see if you can make the goal of better living through food a reality!
Heartland Restaurant & Farm Direct Market, 289 East Fifth Street, Suite #104, Lowertown, St. Paul
Becky Sturm is owner/founder of StormSister Spatique, a local beauty boutique. StormSister Spatique has been featured in Mpls. St. Paul Magazine, METRO Magazine, Minnesota Monthly, Star Tribune, Pioneer Press and various blogs. Once you cross over the Smith Avenue High Bridge, it sits next to Capital View Cafe. At first glance, you might miss this small storefront located on the West Side of Saint Paul. Once you step in, you will see why it’s a gem — product junkies beware! StormSister is filled with comforting products for your skin, body and mind — all products that Becky stands behind. With warm weather upon us, its time to buff, exfoliate and cleanse. What are you waiting for? See below for comments from StormSister owner, Becky Sturm on why she loves Saint Paul and her recommendation for summer products!
Being a small business owner, it very important for me to spend money with other small businesses in my community.
Most of my weekends include: the Saint Paul Farmer’s Market in Lowertown and a stop at my favorite bread bakery, located on the West Side, BC2 Bakery — their sourdough could certainly compete with the original in San Francisco.
I have been a resident of the West Side for 22 years; my husband and I have raised both of our sons here. I love living so close to the river and to downtown. It is the perfect community.
Living on the West Side with its large Hispanic population, has given me the opportunity to enjoy some of the best, authentic Mexican cuisine available in the U.S. Just head down Cesar Chavez Street and you will find several! I have a weakness for guacamole, so I always have a hard time deciding between the ones served at Barrio and El Burrito Mercado.
A stroll downtown wouldn’t be complete without a stop into Candyland. Oh Candyland, you and your tantalizing Chicago mix (caramel, cheese, and real buttered popcorn)!
Finally, that beacon of light on West 7th, Mickey’s Diner — the perfect middle-of-the-night cultural experience after much imbibing.
Having grown up in my grandmother’s beauty shop and then spending 23 years in all aspects of the salon/spa industry, it was time to follow my true passion, retail. So, I took a break and started StormSister Spatique online in 2005. Then, late in 2006 I had decided I really missed that intimate relationship I had with my clients and opened up StormSister Spatique’s storefront in my neighborhood on the West Side.
What’s the deal with StormSister Spatique and PEZ? Click here to learn why!
My head-to-toe beauty must-haves for summer include:
Greenbody Greenplanet haircare by local hairdresser, Lorri Weisen. When you use organic, chemical-free ingredients you not only enhance your own well-being, but the environments!
NONTOXIQUE hand and footcare by local manicurist, Sheila Mossberg. NONTOXIQUE will help you get your hands and feet looking more youthful and glowing with their age-defying ingredients.
Organic Tinted Lip Balms by Badger. These shimmer lip balms will keep your pucker moist and colorful during the hot summer days.
StormSister Spatique is located at 635 South Smith Avenue in Saint Paul, combines luxury spa products in an artsy boutique setting.
From ripe, juicy raspberries and vibrant, crisp green beans, to bacon, eggs, bread, and cheese, there isn’t an edible essential I can think of that you can’t get at the downtown St. Paul Farmer’s Market this time of year. Happily for my taste buds and cooking pleasure, the growing season is in full swing. I dream of firing up the grill and throwing on chicken breasts marinated in fresh herbs, grilling zucchini, roasting sweet corn and slathering it in butter, and making from scratch blueberry ice cream—made entirely from locally ingredients. The crazy thing is, it’s possible! It isn’t always easy be a locavore living in Minnesota, but in July and August, it’s incredibly simple.
So why not try eating local for one week? August 2-8 is National Farmer’s Market Week and in my house, we’re marking the week by taking the Eat Local Challenge. Inspired to try it, too? Pledge your commitment here. (continue reading…)
When I met Jeff, the man who would later become my husband, I was living in the South (where I’m originally from) and we did the long distance dating dance, pining over each other and trying to figure out how to live in the same city. St. Paul got the hard sell, and I was game for a new adventure.
As a born-and-raised Floridian I never would have imagined living in Minnesota. The only time I visited St. Paul prior to moving here was during a snow-filled December weekend. Love is a powerful thing.
It didn’t take long for this city to warm my heart. By the time I moved here—three years ago Memorial Day weekend—St. Paul’s outdoor festivals, downtown farmer’s market, restaurant patio seating, and summer weather perfection were in full bloom. I quickly began exploring, and adoring, this new city of mine.
My now-husband was perhaps (and still is) St. Paul’s biggest cheerleader. He has lived here for 18 years or so, knows all those back roads that confuse everyone else, and is a loyal patron of his tried and true local haunts. His affection has rubbed off on me, though it’s me, with my fresh eyes and non-native status that gets us out to try new restaurants, new hiking trails, and more.
This summer I’m taking my St. Paul exploration to a new level. I have a Google doc going of fun things to do that I regularly add to. Jeff and I plan to spend as much time outside as possible with our 1-year-old son in tow. (Note to self: get to the Roseville REI and buy one of those baby backpack carriers—ASAP!) I’ve got my Minnesota bird and tree naturalist guides in hand and my kitchen ready to make use of our fantastic local produce. Maybe we’ll have the chance to meet at the St. Paul Farmer’s Market sometime.
As the outdoors and healthy living blogger for STAYcation, I’ll be checking out biking and hiking trails, the best spots to take a dip on hot summer days, healthy cooking classes, local farms, ways to get to know our lovely stretch of the mighty Mississippi River, and much, much more. I’ve got my eye on a few yoga and pilates classes I’ve been wanting to try, too, along with some spa treatments I can’t wait to indulge in. I’m also looking forward to trying a few outdoor adventures for the first time—specifically geo-caching and disc golf.
Meanwhile, I’d love to hear about your favorite around-town spots. Where in St. Paul do you go when you need a nature fix, a healthy meal, want to catch a fish, or to take a meditation class to recharge your spirit? And if you hear of a fantastic event I should check out, please let me know!