Never one to pass up an opportunity to check out local produce, I headed to Lismore Farmers’ Market on a blistering hot day. Set a few minutes drive out of the town’s central business district in North Lismore, the market is held inside the Lismore Showground.
Touted as a place where local growers to direct-sell their produce and products to their local community, the weekly market has a convivial atmosphere where everyone seems to know everyone. With a short time frame – 8am-11.30am every Saturday morning – it was a hive of activity when I arrived.
A big crowd drew me over to an area in front of the long shed of bric-a-brac and second hand goods.
To my surprise they were for auctioning off a variety of live boxed fowl – a sure sign you’re not in the city anymore!
After using the opportunity to check out all the pretty patterns of my newfound feathered friends, I headed into the big metal shed for a gander at what the locals grow and make.
Sadly on the Saturday I attended, fresh produce was a bit sparse on the ground, with big gaps between stalls, and very few fruit and vegetable sellers. Food stalls selling eat-at-the-market offerings like Mexican breakfast burritos, and pizza tortillas, with vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options all well represented. Sadly I’d already had a hearty breakfast feed at Flock Espresso & Eats.
My best market find was The Chile Banditos who have their own condiment and spice rub line. Their products were flavoursome and round with a kick like a donkey. They smoke and season their own chillies, running from chipotle to chocolate habanero. While it was hard to choose between their cleverly named products, like Dawn Of The Chipocolypse, I eventually opted for The Fury Of The Kraken Gourmet Smoked Chilli Flakes ($12). They’re blisteringly hot with a smoky sweetness, and a distinctly Mexican sensibility. We love them gingerly sprinkled over nachos, or thrown directly into the beef mix for chilli con carne. Now you know about The Chile Banditos, you don’t have to go all the way to Lismore to get their products – pick them up in their online store: www.thechilebanditos.com
While light on in stalls, perhaps because of the season, or perhaps because Lismore Farmers' Market is on every single weekend, this was a nice market experience clearly geared toward satisfying the wants and needs of Lismore locals.
Lismore Farmers' Market
Lismore Showground, 116 Alexandra Parade, North Lismore
Ph: (0466) 415 172