I used to go to the Division Street farmers market every Saturday morning before the Glenwood Sunday Market opened and before the CTA embarked on their seemingly endless series of "improvements," which make getting anywhere on the weekend a total nightmare. Happily, I rallied myself and made it to the last market of the year this morning. It isn't as crowded by this point in the season, and there are probably only half the merchants you'd find there at mid-summer, but is's still a good market.
I managed to get a ginormous jar of honey, so i should be able to maintain my usual sweetness over the long winter months. And because the pace is a little slower, i had a nice chat with the beekeeper. I also got a ridiculously simple but delicious recipe for radishes sautéed in butter and sea salt from the very friendly young guy who sold me the radishes. It was, he told me, how his grand-mère used to prepare them.
The Green City Market in Lincoln Park is bigger than this one, but there's something so charming about closing two blocks of a downtown street to traffic so that people can engage in vegetable-commerce on a Saturday morning--especially this particular, boozy stretch of Division, which is pretty much of a meat market on Saturday night.
Here is a three-part chronicle of the morning's adventures, featuring a special guest appearance by the world's coolest-looking vegetable: Brussels sprouts. And by the way, if you are ever feeling terribly sad and alone in the world, try taking public transportation with a two-foot long stalk of Brussels sprouts. They are the ultimate icebreaker: four different people stopped me to ask me what they were.
Part 1: Division St. Farmers Market
Part 2: Commuting with Brussels Sprouts
Part 3: Domesticated Animals and Brussels Sprouts