Find These Farmers' Market Favorites This Valentine's Day
Whether you’re a lover (pun intended) or a hater of Valentine’s Day, I think it can be whatever you want it to be. My kids are excited for their school celebration and made Valentine’s Boxes We spent way too much money on cards and candy!
At the heart of all of this is letting those around you know that you care. And that’s a good thing, right? So, I’m embracing the day. What says “love” more than food?
While the Des Moines Downtown Farmers’ Market may not be open for a few more months, there are many local vendors who have products available by special order, at local bakeries and even storefronts to help fill that gap until Downtown Des Moines (DSM) welcomes thousands of hungry visitors in the spring.
I’m starting the morning off with a Chocolate Covered Strawberry smoothie using Picket Fence Creamery and heart-shaped bacon from Des Moines Bacon Company. Both will get your day off to a heart-shaped filled start.
Chocolate Covered Strawberry Smoothie
- 1/2 cup strawberry Greek yogurt
- 3/4 cup fresh or frozen strawberries
- 1 cup Picket Fences 2% or skim milk (or milk of choice). I used Chocolate Milk for the kid’s smoothies.
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened dark cocoa powder or chocolate protein powder
- 1/2 cup ice (only if using fresh berries)
- Place all ingredients in a blender (or Bullet) and blend until smooth.
- Pour into a glass and top with sliced fresh strawberries, if desired.
Cut bacon slices in half and form them into hearts, then bake according to package ingredients in the oven so the hearts keep their shape.
Breakfast is covered…
I think I might get the good mom award!
Where Valentine’s Day is often most noticeable is at work. Some colleagues and friends are celebrating a Galentine’s Day outing at The Cheese Bar, where they pair cheese and chocolate – add in good friends and laughs, what could be better?
I have a feeling it’s going to be so good that I may have to come back!
All-Inclusive Happy Hour
I'm not a big drinker, unless it’s coffee, so I was really excited to learn that my favorite Market coffee, Watershed Cold Brew, is actually on tap at the Iowa Tap Room! If you have not had this coffee, it’s nitro brewed, alcohol-free and reminds you of a Guinness Beer (for the beer connoisseurs), however you can certainly add libations to your coffee. It’s a great way to enjoy another market favorite! And since many of my friends enjoy IPAs, I get to sip my coffee and still be a part of the fun!
Teatime, all the time
From coffee to tea and yes, another Market favorite is available anytime, Red Dragon Tea, is a great idea for a Valentine’s treat. They have so many blends like rest and relaxation, detox, digestion, cold season, allergy blends and so many more.
And as I round out my colorful, flavorful Valentine’s adventure, I would be remised to pass up a chance to order up some Fresh Café juice and soup. I’m going to include some black bean brownies for dessert. My kids love them and they have no idea that they are full of healthy yumminess!
At the end of the day, celebrate what you love – food, friends, family, pets, a hobby, some relaxation – whatever makes your heart smile.
Kelly Foss is former director of the Downtown Farmers' Market in Downtown Des Moines (DSM).