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Greenacres farmers market not fancy, just full of freshness

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It was one of those great discoveries you make when you go out looking for something else.

A stop at an outdoor artisan market on an overcast, wet day proved to be a bad idea. But a wooden building across the street with bright signage and a neat stack of watermelons on an open window looked like a good idea.

So cross over the six lanes of traffic to the Greenacres Farmers Market, and a walk worth taking.

Inside this space are rows of exactly what you need to feel better after four days of carb-crazed indulgence: fresh produce, with much of it local. You can buy an apple or ten pounds of them, a single mushroom, a few beets, fresh dill pickles or a small bunch of dandelion greens. That's the beauty of a market like this. Prices are low because packaging and pretty presentation is minimal, and this is not a high-rent part of the county.

In addition to fresh fruits and vegetables, you can pick up Italian foods, be it pasta sauce or pizzelle cookies, Middle Eastern spices, sauces and grape leaves, dried beans, some bread and dairy products, fresh juices and bottled drinks. No meat or poultry is sold, which contributes to keeping prices down. Greenacres Farmers Market does the farm stand concept well: the look is industrial, but aisles are wide enough to push a basket, there are plastic bags for your produce, pricing signage is clear, delicate items like fresh herbs,eggs, sprouts and wheat grass that require refrigeration are kept cold.

The market also sells packaged and discounted vegetable and fruit "specials": those produce items just a bit past their prime. While these may not be ideal for serving raw, they work very well in smoothies, soups, sauces and stews. Day-old artisan breads are also discounted, and they are perfect for bread crumbs, croutons and bruschetta. Remember, it doesn't have to look perfect to taste perfect.

You can choose to wait until the New Year to make the better health resolution, or make Greenacres Farmers Market the place to be.

Greenacres Farmers Market, 3091 Jog Rd., at 10th Avenue North, Greenacres, FL. Phone (561) 968-5782. SNAP benefits accepted. Open daily. Wholesale delivery is available.

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