Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Someone Else's Cooking: Ithaca Farmers Market

Sometimes, visiting the farmers market is less about the food you buy to cook and consume later and more about the food you buy to consume then and there -- as I quickly accepted when I visited the Ithaca Farmers Market.
I went to school in Ithaca, but for some reason, never once in my four years there did I ventured off the hill down to the market at Steamboat Landing. In fact, I don't really remember cooking a lot at all during college, so I am sure I would have not appreciated it.
But I think I would have appreciated the other offerings at Ithaca, including vendors featuring mini wooden clock towers, handmade cards and jewelry, baked goods and prepared food.
Oh, the prepared food at Ithaca is like no place else -- people wait in lines 10 deep for corn fritters or peanut noodles or platters at Macro Mamas (the only macrobiotic food I have tried and actually liked), which is right next to the Cambodian stand, which is down from the burrito people.
On my last visit, I noticed a new baked goods vendor with a genius business model -- a portable wood burning oven for made-to-order $7 flat bread pizzas. On a cold and blustery day, after slogging through the muddy parking lot just to get inside the market, $7 was a small price to pay.
Apparently, many other people thought so too, as this was the last margarita "pie" they were able to make as they ran out of tomato sauce. Very thin and piping hot, we devoured it while enjoying the water view. If I went back, I might try one other versions, including a white flat bread and Mexican style flat bread (burrito people, take note).
And if you're curious, yes, I did buy some veg at the market, including some very pretty delicata squash, but it really was a day to enjoy the market ambiance and, for once, let someone else to do the cooking.

1 comment:

George said...

Mmm...the cooked foods and baked goods are certainly the way to go when you visit the Ithaca Farmer's Market. Don't get me wrong, the produce is fresh and beautiful too, but the variety of prepared foods make mall food courts a thing of the (shameful) past. Try the homemade ice cream stand and the Belgian waffles next time too. Or better yet, put the ice cream ON the waffle!