The Hazards (?) of Buying Local

Our local Farmer’s Market is up and running! I had been impatiently waiting to see a small group of local Farmer’s filling up their dedicated black top space on Mondays in Thursdays in our small town. I actually missed the first week because I was unaware they had left their blacktop space to avoid the terrible construction in downtown. Their new location is closer to my house and loose gravel, which does not produce the sweltering heat of the black top. So, a win-win for me.

The first night I went, I was excited to see a tent advertising being GMO free, pesticide free, and all natural. With the complicated process involved in FDA Organic Certification, these claims were the next best thing. I was on a mission to find something to serve with my Tempe Mole that night and stumbled upon a small basket of beans.

The beans were in pods (naturally) and the pods were green. The label read pinto beans. I have never seen a pinto bean on a pinto bean plant, so I asked the person selling them, “Are those really pinto beans?” I followed up with the award question, “How do you cook/prepare fresh pinto beans?” The woman at the tent was very friendly. I was told that they were indeed pinto beans and that you shuck them like any other bean and then boil the beans.  I was satisfied with the answer and excitedly took home my own basket of pinto beans to share with my husband. My excitement abated at home when I opened the first few pods only to find tiny green beans inside the pods. To minimize my ranting about the next half hour of that evening, we’ll just say I cooked them like green beans and they tasted like green beans.

So, foodie friends, there are a few questions that still remain:
1. Were these actually pinto beans?
2. Did the seller know they not pinto beans and sell them to the pinto bean ignorant girl?
3. Were they pinto beans picked too early?
4. If they were pinto beans picked too early, was I again the foolish one and bought unknowingly?

Everything else from my Farmer’s Market has been fantastic, but I will not be buying anymore mysterious beans.

Here’s a pic of my beans. Any thoughts on what happened? Are these pinto beans?



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