Jorge and I have been buying our fruits and veggies at the supermarket for years, but I was intrigued when he filled me in on a small street market that comes to his parents’ neighborhood once a week. I went for the first time this week.
It was just a small family with a few tables set up on a side street, but the selection was just as good as the produce section at our favorite supermarket! And let’s face it, a little more charming.
The vegetables were the best part! HUGE stalks of lettuce and spinach, big cucumbers, lots of chiles to choose from (dried and regular), and tomatoes that were twice the size of the ones we get at the supermarket.
The fruit was great as well, and I even spotted a few fruits that I hadn’t seen at the supermarket in a few months, like red mangoes and pears. The yellow mangoes weren’t looking so hot, but everything else was beautiful.
Jorge told me that they’ve been around since he was a kid and they set up in different neighborhoods on different days of the week. I asked the owner more about the place while she was weighing our purchases, and she told me that they get most of their vegetables from her brother’s farm in the state of Puebla. (For those of you unfamiliar with the Cancun area, the Yucatan Peninsula is mostly limestone, meaning the ground is not good for agriculture. Almost all fruit, veggies, and dairy products have to be shipped in from central Mexico.)
This little market runs from 7am – 2pm (more or less… hey, it’s Mexico), and here’s their weekly schedule:
- Sunday: At the big tianguis near Avenida Lopez Portillo (no idea where, but you’ll find plenty of produce vendors there)
- Monday: In Unidad Morelos, just off of Avenida Kinik
- Tuesday: On Avenida Kabah, across from the Ombligo Verde
- Wednesday: In Puerto Morelos
- Friday: On Avenida Kohunlich
Here’s what Jorge and I made off with this week (minus the grapefruits the owner was weighing while I took the picture):
I’ve never bought farm fresh produce before, and I can already see that it looks bigger and healthier than the store-bought stuff we usually get. I’m curious to see how long it stays fresh; I’ve heard from some that it lasts a few days longer than supermarket produce, while others tell me it lasts less time because it has less preservatives. So far, everything still looks great 2 days later, except for the bananas that have started to turn, but that happens to our supermarket bananas as well. We’ll see!
What are your experiences buying organic and/or farm fresh produce? How does it hold up to supermarket produce?