One of the Southern traditions that seems to be slipping away is the fruit stand. My family came from rural South Carolina and I can remember traveling as a child through that part of the country and seeing the countryside dotted with fruit stands. Usually these were run by family members that had made farming their living and they were sharing their crops of tomatoes, corn, watermelon and so many other wonderful things.
Today it seems that we have more Farmer’s Markets and stores that sell fresh vegetables just about all year. I love to visit the Farmer’s Market and it is a great opportunity for local farmers to sell their products. There is one fruit stand in our area and I always enjoy dropping by and visiting with the owner and enjoying his wonderful fruits and vegetables.
This past weekend we visited Asheville and the regional Farmers Market that has been established there for a long time. I enjoyed visiting but I noticed a difference in vendors. They had a cheese shop and they had someone that roasted peanuts on the spot. I also saw a bakery that had brioche which was very unusual as far as I was concerned. We did get some fantastic Blackberries that were great in our Father’s Day meal.
When I was growing up, my family visited the local fruit stands many times and got the best vegetables and fruits ever. As I travel through rural areas now in the summer, I find myself scanning the area looking for the fruit stands and peach shacks that remind me of my childhood.