How I Left the Farmers’ Market with More than I Expected (or, Charlie and the Arancini Truck)

Yesterday was the Strawberry Opening of the Ryerson Farmers’ Market, complete with live music, a scarecrow, scads of strawberries, and of course, lots and lots of kale.

LOTS of kale.

I had to resist buying every variety knowing I’ll be gone this weekend, my fridge needn’t be so full!

…I think there were other vegetables there, too.

Though I only had $11 dollars on-hand, I still walked away with 2 big bunches of kale, 1 big bunch of rainbow chard that was brighter than most rainbows I’ve seen, a huge bunch of spinach with stems still attached, and 5 cucumbers in various hilarious shapes and sorts. From what I know, most of it was picked that morning, and it was ALL organic. All of it! Take that, fast-food “value” menus!

Seriously, I think I have a veggie boner just from talking about it.

But that wasn’t all I left with.

Though I was tempted by the Maple Butter (maple syrup heated at such a high temperature that it takes on the texture and mouth feel of butter), and the honey-spice drenched almonds (as above), it was the Arancini Truck at the end that caught my eye. Or my nose.

When my boyfriend came back from Italy, he spent hours telling me about the gelato and desserts, countless days talking about the pizza, but he’s still talking about the arancini.

Arancini is a Southern Italian treat, essentially a breaded and fried ball of rice with a generous helping of tomato sauce. It’s definitely not something I’d advocate eating every day. But when in Rome…. Though his mom had recreated an amazing rendition (where I first tried it), we hadn’t spotted it anywhere else around Toronto. Until this truck.

I popped my head in and told him that though I’d already spent all my money on veggies (like a good little kale addict), we’d tried and loved arancini and would love to come visit their regular location. Charlie, presumably the owner, simply went to the back, wrapped up two arancinis with an extra tub of sauce, told me to come visit Colombo’s at Danforth and Woodbine (and to watch for them on Dragon’s Den in the fall), and handed me the packages, with a kind smile.

RU Farmers’ Market, I’ll definitely be back. With more bags this time.


7 responses

  1. I always get into trouble with veggies, too! I have to figure out their hours because maybe I can do some shopping too… although I would be limited by what I can pedal home on my bike… Not sure I could fit all that kale in my pannier… although my garden is my current source for local, organic heirloom kale!! Boo-yah! 🙂 Curious to see what you make with all the greens. 🙂

    • Ryerson Farmers’ Market is 3-7pm every Tuesday – if you check out there are quite a few “mini” markets in Toronto that are dispersed downtown, close to many workplaces for easy workday shopping!

      I carry my backpack for heavy-ish goodies (ie beets, apples, berries) and my bike basket is wayyy over the brim with leafy greens 🙂 I’ve been juicing ’em like crazy!

      Jealous of your garden. In a few years I will take that on!

      • Thanks for the info. There used to a market next to my old house but since I’ve moved, there isn’t one nearly as convenient. Although I should check out Sick Kids market again since that is closer to where I work… Tuesdays, too, if my memory serves me correctly. 🙂

    • The first one I saw was last summer, and yes it is quite awesome! Come check it out if you’re in the area! I’ve been going every week and they are quite generous with their veggie portions 🙂

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