Farmer’s Market Fresh Salad

Early Saturday morning, people head over to Ocean Drive in Vero Beach, Florida to purchase Farmer’s Market Fresh produce and spend a day at the beach. Directly across the street from Humiston Park and the beautiful Atlantic Ocean, the little outdoor ocean side market was recognized by Clean Living Magazine as one of the top 50 true farmer’s markets in the country.

Atlantic Ocean At Humiston Park, Vero Beach, Florida
Atlantic Ocean At Humiston Park, Vero Beach, Florida
Vero Beach Farmers Market
Vero Beach Farmer’s Market

The farmer’s market has a small but good choice of local and seasonal produce, citrus, fresh seafood, grass-fed beef, farm fresh chicken and eggs, landscape plants, orchids and crafts. Vendors also sell baked goods, foods straight off the grill, freshly made guacamole and salsa, and beverages such as smoothies and kombucha. There is even live music by local musicians to enjoy while shopping.

Pleasant beachside shops and restaurants line this section of Ocean Drive so I keep a cooler in the back of my car for any perishable items that I purchase at the farmer’s market. After my shopping is complete, I enjoy having breakfast or lunch while sitting at an outdoor table at one of the nearby restaurants, listening to the crashing waves.

Enjoy Breakfast Or Lunch Watching The Waves Crash On Vero Beach
Enjoy Breakfast Or Lunch While Watching The Waves Crash On Vero Beach

Upon returning home later in the day, the fresh produce that I purchased was inspiration for a simple salad of green beans, tomatoes and gorgonzola cheese sprinkled with a few micro greens for garnish…all farmer’s market fresh.

Farmers' Market Fresh Green Bean, Tomato And Gorgonzola Salad
Farmer’s Market Fresh Green Bean, Tomato And Gorgonzola Salad

Green Bean, Tomato And Gorgonzola Salad

Wash and trim off the ends of 1 lb. of very small green beans. Cut into little pieces about 1/2 inch in size. Add to a pot of salted, boiling water and cook until just tender. Transfer the beans with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice and water to stop the cooking and keep their bright green color. Drain and dry on paper towels, then place in a salad bowl.

Cut about a dozen grape or cherry tomatoes in half and place in a small bowl, add salt to taste, toss and let sit for about ten minutes to bring out the flavor of the tomatoes. Add the tomatoes to the salad bowl and retain the accumulated tomato juice in the small bowl. Then add approximately a 1/2 tsp. of Dijon mustard, 1 Tbsp. sherry wine vinegar and 2 – 3  Tbsp. olive oil to the small bowl and whisk. Taste and season with pepper and additional salt, if necessary. Pour the vinaigrette over the green beans and tomatoes, toss gently and taste for seasonings. Add about a 1/4 c. of crumbled gorgonzola to the salad and very gently toss and serve. (I topped the individual servings of salad with a small amount of micro greens as a garnish but that is optional). If preparing the salad ahead of time, refrigerate the cooked green beans and tomatoes separately. When ready to serve, prepare the vinaigrette, add the cheese and toss. This way, you will keep the green color of the beans.

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Being a local in Vero Beach has its advantages such as weekly shopping for farmer’s market fresh produce needed to prepare your meals. If you happen to be a visitor, you too can enjoy a day of shopping and dining along Ocean Drive. You could start the morning at the market with a freshly baked pastry, buy a pretty seagrass container or wood carving to take back home with you, enjoy sitting under an umbrella on the beach or paddling a kayak in the ocean, then have lunch before you head back to your hotel.

Whether a local or a visitor, try to stop by the farmer’s market located on Ocean Drive in Vero Beach, Florida that’s held every Saturday from 8 A.M. to Noon at Humiston Plaza.

 

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145 thoughts on “Farmer’s Market Fresh Salad

      1. I had a lovely time – South Beach and the deco buildings looked amazing and Disneyland etc. had no queues! The time between the two holidays is a great time to visit 🙂

    1. I think you are right, Darlene. So far we are living a dream life in Vero Beach…each day feels like we are on vacation. I think our lives are very similar since we have both moved. Thank you for your compliment, I’m glad you like the recipe.

  1. Karen you are so lucky to have access to all that fresh produce in the winter months. What a lovely selection of produce! Your salad is one I will save for summer 2016 when the local tomatoes are once again plentiful. We have had very warm nice weather here in Nashville, no frost or freezing nights yet, but not as nice as where you are. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

    1. Hi Teresa, It is really nice that our farmer’s market is open year round. It sounds as though the fall weather in Nashville is lovely…it hope it continues for a little longer. Thank you for your wish, have a nice Thanksgiving as well.

    1. Hi Angie, Yes…it is hard to believe that it is fall when everything is green and the temps are warm. I’m glad that you like the salad, thank you! I thought it was a nice way to use the veggies I bought at the farmer’s market.

  2. I think I need to move there and sell my “Best Key Lime Pie on the Planet” at the farmer’s market! Named by my customers at our local farmer’s market since 2005. Beautiful post Karen. Beach Envy! Diane 😉
    Did you see my last blog post showing images of my farmer’s market?

    1. Hi Diane, I’m glad that you enjoyed the post. I know that you would enjoy Vero Beach even if you had lots of competition selling your pie here in Florida. Yes, I did read your October post and you are right, being a vendor at a farmer’s market is hard work.

  3. Love the pictures and description of the farmer’s market. I feel like I was exploring with you! This weekend is one of the last of our CSA extended harvest pick ups. Certainly not getting any green beans or tomatoes here… lots of onions, garlic, leeks, potatoes, beets and squash instead. 🙂

    1. Hi Jean, I’m glad that you enjoyed the photos and post about our farmer’s market. We are lucky that there is such a long growing season in our part of Florida.

    1. Hi Bonnie, I do know what you mean…I always hated when early frosts in New England meant the end of the growing season. I’m going to make the most of the weekly farmer’s market here in our little town.

    1. I totally agree with you Fatima, the market’s products were so fresh. The produce is much nicer than what we have at our local market which has been trucked in from all over the country.

    1. Hi Jovina, I agree with you about us being lucky to have a nice local farmer’s market. I’m happy that you like the salad, the gorgonzola cheese adds lots of flavor to this dish…thank you.

  4. That does look like a good farmer’s market! My local one isn’t nearly as good, alas, although I’m within a 15 minute drive of a superb one. Always fun to stroll through them and plan dinner as you see what’s on offer. Fun post — thanks.

    1. Thank you John, I’m glad that you enjoyed the post. You can’t help but get inspired when you see so much farm fresh produce…and only 5 minutes from home. 🙂

    1. Hi Sylvia, It is delightful…I know you must have similar places in your area of Florida. Thank you for your nice compliment about the photos, I’m glad you enjoyed them.

  5. How could you not be inspired to create such a lovely dish with all those wonderful ingreidents at that fabukous msrket. And those ocean views – incredible! What sort of temperatures do you have there now?

    1. Hi Tanya, You definitely get inspired with so many good things to choose from. The added bonus is its close proximity to the beach. It has been warmer than normal lately, 80’s in the day and 70’s at night. Next week’s forecast is mid 70’s in the day and mid 60’s at night. I think I can really get used to that even if it doesn’t feel or look like fall. 🙂

  6. Farmer’s market are a wonderful thing to have. I love ours here in Santa Cruz. We had our last tomatoes last Sunday. Your salad looks great, I like that you use the tomatoe juice for the salad dressing. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving .

    1. Hi Gerlinde, Your area has to have wonderful produce available to you all year. I like to use the accumulated tomato juice as it adds lots of additional flavor to a salad dressing. Thank you for your wish, I hope you have a lovely Thanksgiving as well.

    1. Hi Kay, The market’s location across from the ocean is great but it too is used as public parking for the park during the week. We love having breakfast at the beach and on the weekend there is music in the afternoon if we go for lunch.

  7. You’re lucky to have fresh produce all year! Farmer’s Markets are wonderful here too during the late spring, summer and early Fall…then they disappear and we’re stuck with grocery-store produce….your salad’s beautiful! 🙂 🙂

    1. Hi Linda, I appreciate your visit and nice compliment about my salad. Having farm fresh produce all year is one of the nice things I’ve discovered since our recent move here to Florida.

    1. Thank you for your wish, Diane. The market really is a nice one. There is another one in the next town that is supposed to be larger but we haven’t gone there yet to check it out.

    1. Oh dear! I didn’t mean to torture you Judy. What will I do when you have feet of snow on the ground…perhaps I’ll put a warning that “this post contains lots of sunshine and eludes to warm temperatures”. 😀 All kidding aside, I’m glad you enjoyed the post and photos, thank you!

    1. Hi Diane, You’ve got it right. While there were tears at the thought of leaving beautiful New England behind, we our enjoying our new home. There is so much to discover…such as the nice farmer’s market. 🙂

    1. Hi Cheri, We go to the beach often but have never gotten our toes in the sand. 🙂 The market has nice veggies and flowers…I would buy an orchid but I’ve not had much luck with them in the past.

    1. Thank you for your nice compliment, Francesca. I’m happy to know you like the salad…I thought it turned out really well. We really our enjoying our new home. 🙂

    1. Hi David, The weather has been in the mid 80’s so it certainly doesn’t seem or look like fall so far. After more than 100 inches of snow last winter in New Hampshire, I don’t think I’ll miss snow this winter. Perhaps next year we will go back to Europe for Christmas, there is always snow in Austria and Germany.

  8. That salad looks delicious! It’s nice to have a market near by. I have to travel a bit to visit a good one, so don’t go as often as I would like, but even in winter there are many stands with locally grown produce.

    1. I’m glad you like the salad Cathy, thank you for your compliment. I had to travel about 30 minutes to the closest farmer’s market in New Hampshire so I’m happy to have one just over the bridge here in Vero Beach. I’ve always enjoyed all the Viktualienmarkt in Munich…the best I’ve ever seen. It was especially nice during the Advent season. 🙂

    1. Hi Norma, I really can’t think of a nicer way to spend Saturday morning than breakfast at the beach and picking up some goodies to cook later in the day. Winter snow…a dusting for Christmas was always welcomed but where we lived we always got too much. It may not look like winter in Dec., Jan. & Feb. but I think I’ll adjust. 😀

  9. Well, if you are kind’of missing New Hampshire at times you just have to drive down to this delightful place . . . . yes, we have Farmers’ Markets all year also, sadly not close enough for me . . . lovely salad . . .and now a scroll upwards again, love and grow orchids myself and that was a lovely table!

    1. You gave my a chuckle, Eha and you are so right! It really is nice to have farm fresh veggies, I’m sorry that your markets are not close by. I’m glad you like the salad, thank you.

  10. What a difference to your end of year and the start! Shopping by the beach instead of trying to get rid of so much snow. Have to admit to preferring surf.
    Lovely salad, with nice clean flavours. Oh, and Happy Thanksgiving for next week.

    1. So very true Johnny, it couldn’t be more different. I’ll take surf and sand over 100 inches of snow anyway. 😀 Thank you for your nice compliment about the salad and your wish for Thanksgiving. We are going to spend Thanksgiving with our family in Miami for the first time in years.

    1. I’m glad you enjoyed the photos, Charlie. We think Vero Beach is a lovely little town…we really are enjoying it. I’m with you about gorgonzola cheese and it added a lot of flavor to this salad. I appreciate your nice compliment, thank you.

  11. Florida is so wonderful this time of year! I love how you have captured the season in the lush salad. I’m hoping to find locally grown green beans for Thanksgiving, a local farm stand had them a few weeks ago. Tomatoes are gone until next summer. Embracing the changes of each season is joyful way to cook.

    1. I agree with you, Deb…it is wonderful when you can cook with ingredients that are in season and I appreciate your nice compliment about the salad. I hope you are able to find locally grown green beans for your Thanksgiving meal.

  12. Lucky you with Vero Beach, great area! And what an accolade for the farmer’s market! Ours here closed in September so I know now we should move South, esp with 6″ snow due here tomorrow night! I want to try your great salad and I’d like to be sitting under a palm tree while enjoying it! 🙂

    1. Hi Pam, I do think we were lucky to be able to move to Vero Beach, it has so much charm. Last year’s 100 inches of snow in February did it for us…it was more than we could take. Sitting under a palm while eating this salad compared to having to shovel snow…yes, I agree with you. 😀

    1. Oh dear Liz, I seem to have made several of you envious. I do have to say that I love being able to shop for fresh veggies at our farmer’s market…wish I could share with you all. Thank you for your nice compliment about the salad and your nice wish. I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving as well.

    1. Hi Dawn, I appreciate your visit and nice compliment. I’m happy that you enjoyed the photos, thank you. Breakfast at the beach and shopping for fresh veggies turned out to be a very pleasant way to send a Saturday.

  13. If this post is supposed to make us jealous of warm, sunny weather…it is working, very well! It is starting to cool off a lot here, now that we are past the middle of November.
    Those tomatoes look delicious, it’s going to be several months before we will have anything that fresh. I am going to try one of those salads!
    Have a great weekend, Karen.

    1. I really don’t want you to be jealous, Marigene. I’m thinking about how nice it would be to enjoy the cool weather where you are then come in and sit at your lovely decorated fall table, I know it will be especially beautiful on Thanksgiving. I believe you would enjoy this salad, I thought it was very good. Thank you for your compliment and wish.

    1. Hi Krista, Isn’t it a pretty place to hold a market. Besides all the fresh foods, there are some lovely small shops selling all kinds of pretty things for your home and yourself as well that line Ocean Drive.

    1. Hi Monica, I agree with you, the location of the farmer’s market is terrific. Between the shopping at the market and boutique stores that line Ocean Drive and being able to enjoy a meal while looking at the ocean, it doesn’t get much better than that. Hope you get a chance to return to Florida soon. Thank you for your visit and comment.

    1. Thank you Amanda, for your nice compliment about the salad…I’m glad you like it. Each week we go out learning what our new town has to offer. We finally got new Florida driver’s licenses so I guess we can now say we are officially “locals”. 😀

    1. So true Larry. This market runs year round, it will be interesting to see how it varies over the months ahead. We are settling in fine and you are right, I don’t think either one of us will miss New Hampshire’s freezing winter temperatures. 😀

  14. Are you living a dream life or what, my friend! Where you were before, people are freezing, and now, you have breakfast in Shangrila! Green beans have special place in my heart. This salad is after my heart and I call it decadent! 😛

    1. You know Fae, I think you are right. This move was my husband’s idea and I had real doubts about leaving my lovely historic home for a very downsized new home but I’m love it. It may not be Shangri-La, but being able to have breakfast at the beach in November…that’s oh so nice. Thank you for your lovely compliment about the salad, I’m glad you like it.

    1. Thank you Penny, I’m happy to know that you enjoyed the photos. I’m sure you are looking forward to being back in Florida but I guess it will be bittersweet since you will be selling your home. Perhaps we will get a chance to meet while you are here.

  15. It’s 30 minutes to drive to Noosa where we have a ‘real’ farmers market. All food and only food and from the producer. Fruit, veg, eggs, meat, fish and seafood, flowers, plants and food ready to eat. I’d go every week if it weren’t for the drive. We have one just minutes away that is much smaller and easier to get to. Your market looks fantastic and the ocean is gorgeous. I take it for granted sometimes that I live so close to the beach.

    1. Hi Maureen, You and I both now live in similar yet very different worlds. I’m loving that I have so many options nearby as I too used to have to drive at least 30 minutes for almost anything in our rural area of New Hampshire. Our market is only 5 minutes from our house and I’m pleased with it’s offerings. We’ve been told that we need to go to Ft. Pierce as theirs is bigger but that will be an adventure for another day. 🙂

  16. I have not been to a farmer’s market in ages…seeing the pictures, made me wanted to go to one. Yes, the weather here in Southern California is beautiful too…as a matter of fact we just went out with shorts and flip flops…
    Have a great weekend Karen 🙂

    1. Hi Juliana, I hope this post inspires you to go to one of your wonderful farmer’s markets…California is known for its great produce. It feels strange to be wearing shorts here in Florida as well…I used to wear jeans and sweaters this time of the year. 😀

    1. Hi Marlene, We were very pleased with our first visit to the market, it is nice to have the availability of farm fresh veggies so close to our house. The salad was good, I’m glad that you liked it…thank you.

    1. Thank you for your kind words, Zaza. I’m happy to know that you enjoyed the post and the salad recipe. You are right, it is simple to prepare but very good. 🙂

    1. Thank you for your lovely compliment, Sophie. If you fly over, we will have breakfast at the beach and do a little shopping. 🙂 We really have found a pretty little town to live in…I’m glad you like it.

  17. Wow, your market looks so colorful and interesting – love that it features live music and fresh flowers. And the weather!!! I’m guessing you must be loving your new neighborhood 🙂
    Oh I do love a visit to the local Farmers Market (which just happens to be at my son’s school). The only danger is that my shopping bags always end up full of things I don’t actually *need* like freshly baked Portuguese tarts and jars of condiments!
    Your salad looks lovely. I can almost taste it.

  18. Hi Saskia, I was pleasantly surprised by the music and flowers myself. I’m like you and came away with a cooler full of goodies. We really are happy with our new neighborhood. We are five minutes from the beach in one direction and five minutes to our little downtown area in another. I’m glad you like the looks of the salad, thank you!

  19. Karen,

    You have the best recipes, I’m always Pinning them and this is no exception!

    I so wish we had year round farmer’s markets but that’s not possible. The Clean Living magazine sounds interesting. Does it have recipes?

    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

    Jane x

    1. Thank you Jane, for your sweet compliment. I do appreciate your pinning my recipes…that is so nice. Yes, the magazine does have recipes but I’ve not tried any of them as yet. I hope you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving as well…hopefully all that snow will be melted for the big day. 🙂

    1. Hi Kathryn, My husband and I are very happy with our decision to move to Vero Beach, it is a charming little town. As we watch the news showing the early snows in areas of our country, it is nice to know that we won’t be dealing with snow anymore. 🙂

    1. I agree with you Meg, we had a wonderful Saturday shopping at the farmer’s market and then having breakfast at the beach. You really can’t ask for better. 😀

  20. Thank you Sandra, for your nice compliment about my photos and the salad. I’m glad you like the dressing…I always use Dijon when making a vinaigrette. 🙂

  21. All those beautiful bright colours can only put one in a good mood and feel inspired to cook something. You make me wish even more I had a farmer’s market next to my home. I love green bean salad, especially paired with a mustard vinaigrette. Your salad looks super!

  22. Oh I’m pretty sure we would like Vero Beach Karen! Especially now as I’m looking out over snow already. The market looks amazing. I could easily lose myself all morning in there – and then spend the afternoon on the beach. Perfection!

    1. Hi Kristy, I do believe you and your family would enjoy Vero Beach. There is even a Disney resort on the north end of the beach. I hope the snow in your area it isn’t a sign of a snowy winter for you.

  23. My goodness! I know you are feeling lucky – living like a king and queen in sweater weather when back home you may already have had the first snow! The salad looks delicious and I envy such a full service Farmer’s Market!

    1. Hi Kelli, We are not going to miss snow…that is for sure. The farmer’s market does have a little of everything. The next town south is supposed to have a larger one but we have not had a chance to go there as yet.

  24. You obviously are taking advantage of the long growing season down there is Florida. What a great way to spend a Saturday morning. Fresh green beans in November – I wish!!! Beautiful salad Karen. Hope you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

    1. Happy Thanksgiving to you too, MJ. It really is nice to have an almost continuous growing season in our area of Florida. I’m glad you like the salad, thank you.

  25. Sounds like you’re embracing all that goodness Florida has to offer, Karen. Good for you! I just did a bit of browsing back to see if you are permanently there and I’m guessing you are:) Congratulations on your move and the new, albeit warmer, chapter in your life.

    So far so good as far as weather in PA this year, no snow…yet! I’m still thinking about making the move but recently I’ve been checking out motor homes. Time will tell.

    Your salads look simply refreshing, just as they should be. I’m excited for you and your new home. Enjoy every moment and, thanks for sharing, Karen.

    1. Thank you Louise, for your nice wish and compliment. We really are trying to learn all we can about our new town and all it has to offer…yes, we are permanent residents now. My husband said he never wants to be cold again and Vero Beach seemed perfect for us.

  26. I do love a good old fashioned farmers market and this one seems to have it all, perfectly situated across from the ocean. There is nothing more delicious than a salad inspired by the ingredients.

    1. It really is nice Susan, to still have produce fresh from the Florida farms around us at our market. It will be interesting to see what they have available early next year. You are right, we won’t miss winter…it was brutal last year in New Hampshire.

    1. Hi Amy, I know where you are coming from…the markets in New Hampshire usually stopped at the end of September or October. Thank you for your nice compliment about the salad, I’m glad you like it.

  27. Just love a good farmers market, they are popping up everywhere here in Melbourne (Australia) and the quality of the foods are so much better than the big chain supermarkets. Love the tomato pic!!

  28. I love buying local produce. We are lucky though as my hubbie works on an organic farm so we gets lots of organic veg for free, however I try always try to purchase other local veg that we don’t get, or eggs or meat or milk. If I can’t get local I’ll buy Scottish to support Scottish farmers. Although our local farmers market is not in such a beautiful location!

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