We live in the Barossa which is home to many great wineries and some amazing food. One of my all time favorite things is the Saturday morning farmers market. Small stall holders selling what they grow, make and bake. It is AMAZING. It is a pricier market but it it direct from the farmers. There is fresh Jersey milk, amazing breads, the BEST salted caramel ice cream you could ever imagine. (Truly I dream about it, I often dream of food I love!) but my all time favorite stall is the pig man....O.k. he is not called the pig man, his business is actually Barossa Heritage Pork. He breeds free range Berkshire and Tamworth pigs which are a black or orange pig or a combination of both. They are a cool looking pig!
(My husband used to manage piggeries hence my passion towards pigs. One day we would like enough land to run our own free range pigs but that's a story for another day. )
Here he is here....
Berkshire and Tamworth pigs are a slower growing pig with a higher fat content then the commercially bred large whites which is the breed used in supermarket pork. It's this fat which sets them aside from the commercial large whites. It adds amazing flavor and tenderness to the meat. Heritage breeds commonly have smaller litters, so partly explains why the price of his product is more expensive per kg. But you see it has to be due to the slower, gentle manner of his free range farming practices. The bottom line is his animals cost more to get to slaughter size and this is reflected in the cost/kg. It is worth the extra! His sausages are truly delicious. I don't eat any others now as nothing compares. All of his products are full of flavor and amazing but the sausages are my all time favorite.
Sometimes farmers markets can seam pricy.....We are a young family of 5, we live in a standard 3 bed/1 bath home. We are far from wealthy but we have enough. We do have a food budget and sometimes these kinds of items can stretch it. But by thinking outside the square and by using these flavorsome sausages in a pasta rather then by themselves on a plate, a little bit goes a long way. It is possible to chose to support these little people without it costing you the earth. It may just take a little more planning.
One of my favorite fast meals to do is put them in pastas. I bake them in the oven as the natural skin doesn't cope with frying, make either a simple passata style tomato sauce or whip up some egg yolks and cream and stir through the hot fresh cooked pasta. (I always buy the local pasta when at these markets which is conveniently opposite the pig mans stall) With a creamy sauce I love to add the zest of a lemon which just cuts through the richness. Then slice the sausage, and a handful of home grown basil/parsley and fresh grated parmasen and it feels like a luxurious meal when in fact it's a 10 min effort and a bit of cooking time.
For me, making a conscious effort to buy locally, buy direct from farmers, supporting the little Australian born and bred business when ever I can is a step I can make towards living simply. I don't like what our big supermarkets are doing by pushing all our brands off the shelves and replacing with theirs. But they are doing it because we, the consumers let them. We vote with our dollars. It seems they are a dominating force with little we can do to influence them, but that's wrong. There is something we can do. And that's to consciously decide to seek out the little people. To give them or dollars instead. For me it helps to pencil in going to the markets as a 'date'. It's a 20 min drive but worth it. I really value what we consume, and feel strongly about supporting Australian brands. And the vibe, friendly atmosphere and great coffee makes for a lovely morning.