Cooking with produce from the Regina Farmers’ Market

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If you want to make a day of it you can take out a cookbook at the library, pick a recipe to make, and head down the block to the market for ingredients! Amina Salah

An overview of this writer’s favourite finds, along with one of her favourite recipes: lazy girl kale fried rice

Every year, the Regina Farmer’s Market comes alive from May to October at the heart of downtown Regina. It is a vibrant market open on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.. It is one of the biggest events in the city, bringing in many shoppers and vendors every week. I made it my mission to make time to go to the market this year as I was unable to go the previous years. I promised myself that I would live out my best cottage core life this summer, by force, no matter what. 

The first time I went, I was unsure how everything worked. Thankfully, there was an information booth that was extremely helpful. By now I am accustomed to the market as I go there so often. It is my favourite weekly ritual. It’s a great way to rediscover my city, meet new people, and try different kinds of foods, produce, and goodies such as delicious veggie springrolls and samosas from Good Morning Spring Rolls, blueberry scones and lemon cakes from Something Sweet by Fadiah, Kombucha from Crave Kombucha, coconut cookies from D’licious Treats, garlic from The Garlic Garden, and my favourites, Kale from Helio Trope Farm as well as produce from Lincoln Gardens Farm. 

The reality is that the market is definitely a splurge. It is absolutely not cheap as everything is home-made or home grown right here in Saskatchewan, which I understand. Thus, for students, it might not necessarily be the cheapest place to get produce. I view it as a seasonal event. Some people follow Fashion Week, I follow the Farmer’s Market. It is a way for me to indulge in organic produce and nourish my body whilst supporting local small businesses. 

My favourite dish to make is what I like to call my Lazy Girl Kale Fried Rice. The Kale from Helio Trope Farm is especially perfect for this recipe. It is one of those recipes that is perfect to clean out the fridge and use up all your produce. Furthermore, a perfect fried rice recipe uses leftover rice. I’ve tried making it with fresh rice, and I can tell you, it is not the same. I prefer Basmati rice so that is what I use. I like to chop up some tomatoes, onions, cilantro, red bell peppers, and yellow bell peppers, and pour them into a pan or wok. 

I prefer sesame oil when making fried rice. It gives it a rich, nutty taste. For seasoning, I use sumac, lemon and herb seasoning, garlic, and a little bit of miso paste. Once everything is sautéed, I chop up some kale and cook it along with the other vegetables. The last step is to add the rice. It is important to use a fork to stir when you add the rice because using a spoon mashes up the rice. Once everything is cooked, I like to chop up some green onions and sprinkle them as a garnish over the fried rice. 

This recipe has held me throughout university. It is something I always go back to because it is healthy and comforting. If you are someone who does not like your greens, fried rice is the perfect way to sneak them in. The key is to season properly, and no this does not mean ketchup! Ultimately, cooking is a life skill. The more you cook, the more you will become comfortable with cooking. The more comfortable you become, the better you become. In the end, this ensures you will always have specific recipes you can go back to. These are recipes that will have your back for life. Your body deserves nutrients, it deserves fuel, it deserves to be nourished and taken care of.

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