Sunday at the Mar Vista Farmer’s Market

by Ann Marie Michaels on October 14, 2012

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Mar Vista Farmer's Market

I love LA. We have some of the best farmer’s market in the country. One of the closest farmer’s markets to me is the Mar Vista Farmer’s Market which happens every Sunday from 9 am – 2 pm.

We’ve had great farmer’s markets in Los Angeles for years, but they just keep getting better and better. You won’t believe the stuff you can find at our farmer’s markets. If you think farmer’s markets are just for fruit and vegetables, you’ll be blown away.

Pirates at the Mar Vista Farmer's Market

Argggh, matey! The pirates were out in full force today, getting everyone pumped up for Halloween. Seriously awesome costumes. The pirates had the best props: bottles of rum, hatchets, fake bloody teeth, peg legs, plenty ‘o cleavage, real parrots, and a pet rat (“pi-rat” — get it?).

Yes on Prop 37

And I finally got myself a Yes on Prop 37 pin. I’m going to wear it every day from now until the election.

Sunday at the Mar Vista Farmer’s Market

Here’s what I bought today at the farmer’s market:

  • Pastured pork fat for lard
  • Two kinds of goat cheese – truffle and pepper & shallot
  • Six pounds of grass-fed beef brisket
  • Six pounds of pastured chicken heads
  • Six pounds of pastured chicken feet
  • A pound of pastured Polish sausage
  • Two packs of marinated anchovies and some squid and seaweed salad

Bike Love

Jimenez Family Farm

The pork fat is from Jimenez Family Farm. I’ll be using it to render lard. Hurray, it’s officially pie season!

The pork at Jimenez is pesticide-free, antibiotic/hormone-free, and non-GMO. I’m so happy to finally have a source of local pastured lard here in LA.

If you visit them, please ask them to start using lard for their pies instead of vegetable shortening (they could sell some with vegetable shortening for the vegetarians). I would have bought a pie today if they had made the crust with lard, but I think they need some convincing.

Oh and did I mention that they said they will sell me a whole pig? Head included. Oh, boy! I can’t wait to make head cheese. Yes, I will blog about it and post the recipe.

Jimenez also sells lamb and rabbit, and they sell lamb fat for lamb tallow.

Soledad Goats

I’m totally addicted to the goat cheese from Soledad Goats. The flavor is out of this world. I can’t stop eating it.

Dey Dey’s Best Beef Ever

The brisket is from Dey Dey’s Best Beef Ever, one of my favorite farms in Southern California. I’m going to make brisket tacos in the crock pot tomorrow.

I also love Dey Dey’s chicken heads and feet, which I use for making chicken stock. Lots of gelatin, yo!

Dey Dey’s also sells raw milk, butter and cheese from Organic Pastures. Organic Pastures recently changed their recipe for their cheddar and I have to tell you, it’s now my absolute favorite cheddar.

They’ll also sell you a whole steer, or a half or a quarter. This is the easiest and most economical way to buy grass-fed meat — just fill up the chest freezer.

How About You?

Did you get to the farmer’s market this weekend? What did you buy? Please share in the comments.

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{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Ellen October 14, 2012 at 3:28 PM

I get Dey Deys at the Orange Farmer’s Market on Saturdays. I’ve also purchase pork fat from them and eggs and milk and cheese and liver both chicken and beef…… How do you make lard from port fat?


cheeseslave October 14, 2012 at 3:31 PM
Renee October 14, 2012 at 3:35 PM

What a great haul!
I do up our Sweetwater Farmer’s Market every 3 weeks. I typically get 9 doz pastured eggs, 3lb grassfed ground beef or just 1.b and get a good size chuck roast, 1-2 whole pastured chickens, and every other month I get a few pounds of leaf lard or suet for lard or tallow. In Michigan our market closes for the winter in December and chickens are done in November so I’m doubling up and we’ll eat off that in the winter out of the freezer and then the rest of our cow and sprouted beans and rice til the spring!
I go to our local grass fed farm every Saturday for our raw milk and cheese since it’s not legal to sell outside of a cow share in Michigan.


Susan October 14, 2012 at 3:37 PM

I’m so jealous, AM! My farmers market, while better than nothing, basically sucks. I am able to get my pastured eggs there and some organic veggies, but there really isn’t much more than that. It’s frustrating because I live in Temecula (which I realize doesn’t mean anything to people out of So CA) and there are tons af farms near by. But trying to find pastured food is almost impossible. We are known for our wines and our avocados out of neighboring Fallbrook, but anything beyond that is difficult to get a hold of. I have have decent natural market, but there is still many things I’d like to eat without buying them online. Sometimes the shipping can just be so much!

As soon as my daugher is done with school in May, I’m getting out of here!!


Katie October 14, 2012 at 3:48 PM

How cool! I used to work in Mar Vista, lived in Culver City! Memories. Im not surprised that anywhere in CA has the best Farmers markets! I now shop at the ones here in PA…..pretty good here….and lots of Amish farmers selling raw dairy and raw cheeses, pastured meats, etc. I buy all pastured grass fed meat, eggs, chickens and when I cant get what I’m looking for I go to and order online! I get a local CSA box of produce delivered weekly! LOVE it! Love your page too, keep up the good work!!


Norma October 14, 2012 at 4:03 PM

that sounds like a wonderful, wonderful place to shop. No pictures? :-( Oh well, I’ll use my imagination. I LOVE farmers markets, they are the best. If I ever get to LA I am going to look this one up. thanks!!


cheeseslave October 14, 2012 at 9:07 PM


That’s all I got! I was busy keeping up with my 5-year-old


Emily October 14, 2012 at 4:36 PM

Brisket Tacos!!! Can I Please have the recipe!!?!


cheeseslave October 14, 2012 at 9:08 PM
Sylvie October 14, 2012 at 4:41 PM

I’m over at the H’Wood farmer’s market. I have a quick question about your anchovies. Are they in some kind of vegetable oil? There was a stand selling something similar at H’Wood, but I couldn’t do Canola, or soybean or whatever the oil was (wasn’t olive).

Oh, and have you ever ordered chickens from Rainbow Ranch Farms? I VASTLY prefer their heads/feet (which come on attached to the chickens in the CSA basket). I bought some Dey Dey last week because Rainbow focuses on turkeys in Oct/Nov – but I don’t find them nearly as flavorful. I do however love their broth (esp when I’m lazy).

If you’re a regular, Soledad will sell you eggs which are fabulous – about as good as Organic Pastures. I love Jimenez. They will sell you any part – all you have to do is e-mail. I really like their pork belly and lamb liver.


cheeseslave October 14, 2012 at 9:10 PM


These anchovies are marinated in olive oil. I’ll have to look up the name of the people I bought them from.

I have never heard of Rainbow Ranch Farms. Sounds good!


Leena September 1, 2013 at 8:49 AM

I am supposed to do my first Rainbow Ranch pickup today and can’t find their address for the Artisan Market anywhere! Do you have it?


Sherrie October 15, 2012 at 6:20 AM

Oh, my goodness! What wonderful finds. You all are very, very fortunate to have the diversity of the foods available to you.

I’ve been curious about chicken heads for stock. I make mine with the feet but am uneducated with how to treat the head before it goes in the pot. We “put up” our own chickens and the heads usually go out with the feathers and entrails. Do you have a resource or “how to” on the heads?


Ariana {And Here We Are...} October 15, 2012 at 8:46 AM

The farmers markets are really, really high on my list of what I miss most about living in Los Angeles (next would be the restaurants!) My husband and I had our first date at the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market, after brunch at Doughboys.

The markets here in England do not even compare… They are, surprisingly enough, a relatively new idea, the oldest ones only about 10 years old. Still, most of our produce is imported, and we have ONE organic stall. We did shop at the market this weekend, but we also drove to a local farm, where we could also buy some meats, local cheese, and a trunk full of winter squash. The main big bonus was getting to go pet and feed all of the animals. So that’s a big consolation!


Heather October 16, 2012 at 9:48 AM

You are so right! I work at the Santa Barbara and Santa Monica farmers market and we are so spoiled!Jiminez is great as well as Rancho san Julien Beef(may just be Santa Barbara), and you better believe I take full advantage of my vendor discount.


Leah Johnson October 16, 2012 at 7:11 PM

I live in Riverside and go to the downtown Riverside farmer’s market every week to load up on produce. Clark’s Nutrition is nearby and they sell Organic Pastures raw milk and cheese. We also go out to the Orange farmer’s once a year to buy 1/4 steer from Dey-Dey’s alon with a few of his whole chickens. Our options here in the Inland Empire are a bit more limited than in LA or the OC, but we are able to piece our supply together pretty well.


Katie October 16, 2012 at 7:20 PM

Here’s a great site to order grass fed meats, butter, etc etc ….including wild seafood!!

Use Paleo12 for a promotion code and get 15% off!

I just used the code and it works. Free shipping for some orders…..


Genevieve Mama Natural October 16, 2012 at 7:41 PM

ENVIOUS! You have such great options out west… especially because you can buy RAW MILK at the grocery store!


Heather :) : :) October 17, 2012 at 6:51 PM

Oh, I’m really fortunate to have a great farmer’s market in the area as well as access to lots of organic foods. I should visit my farmer’s market more often :) :) Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California, Heather :)


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