Show me a farmers’ market and I’ll show you authentic growers and artisans and folks who care about what we put in our bodies and lovingly make foods and crafts by hand.
I have an every-Saturday habit of visiting our local farmers’ market to pick up as many locally grown items from my grocery list before heading to the big box chain store. And when I travel for pleasure, the farmers’ market is always one of the “tourist attractions” I seek. Austin, Texas has a lovely market run by their Sustainable Food Center, which has strict requirements that farmers can only sell what they grow, and crafts vendors can only sell products that they produce. A member of the Buy Fresh Buy Local Food Chapter in Central Texas, this market, like many others, empowers consumers to find fresh, locally grown food.
“Locavore” is an overused, trendy word, but it works for me. We should all have a little locavore in us.
A recent trip to Austin to visit our just-gone-to-college millennial now at University of Texas prompted a farmers’ market trek, and we found some treasures. The one I want to share with you today is Belle Vie Farm and Kitchen, which makes absolutely lovely duck patés and mousses and terrines. At reasonable prices. Tasting like, if you closed your eyes, you’d be in Paris. I mean it. It is run by a couple: the lady-chef with a gourmet resumé is from France (of course), while the man-farmer from Austin hails from seven generations of ranchers (of course). Scroll to the bottom of this post to read about the meaning of Belle Vie, which is charming.
We could not pass up the paté, especially after the man-farmer from Belle Vie Farm gave us multiple , generous, tasty samples. Unable to decide between them, we had to take two: duck rillettes and paté de campagne. Along with a peppery sharp cheddar from another local vendor, and a bit of the bubbly, they made a marvelous cocktail hour snack in our little rented cottage with our friends.
Locavore luxury. Simple pleasures. Austin farmers’ market, we’ll be back. We’ll have lots of opportunities: the millennial-in-college is only a freshman!
More about the name of Belle Vie Farm and Kitchen, from their web site:
In English Belle Vie literally means beautiful life, but in France it would be said out loud at times like at the beginning of a meal when the table is brimming with food and wine and one is surrounded by family and friends. “Ah la belle vie!” – oh, the good life.
Copyright 2016, Glover Gardens Cookbook