Kids at the Mobile Market

I love it when little kids come to the Mobile Market.  Many are curious about the brightly colored bus in their neighborhood; others remember when Farmer Ben and Chef Tom visited their school this spring.  They arrive in strollers, their parent's arms or on their own fruition.  Our cutest little regular is an 8-month-old girl whose toes remind me of sweet corn kernels all lined up in row. 

The children, as well as the adults, are excited by the smells and sight of fresh fruit -- apples, strawberries, cherries and raspberries.  To encourage the kids at our LeDroit Park Mobile Market stop to spend their money on healthy snack foods instead of a bag of chips around the corner, we created Fruit Bags for 50 cents.  This past week's offering included 2 strawberries, 8 raspberries and 10 tart cherries.  We sold out within half an hour!

Last Wednesday we ended the day by playing "Market" with 5-year-old Kizzie.  Benjamin showed her how to use the scale to weigh vegetables, and she followed suit, stacking cartons and calling out the prices. Using stickers as currency, I "bought" fruit, milk and eggs from Kizzie -- strawberry stickers were $10 bills, spinach stickers were $5's.  It wasn't long before she'd mastered the concept of commerce.

This summer my 9-year-old son, Zazu, will be conducting cooking demos with me at the Mobile Market.  He's been cooking ever since he was old enough to stand on a chair without falling over backwards, and he is quite competent in the kitchen.  Recently, he made stir-fried chard and shiitake mushrooms with garlic and ginger.  My hope is that seeing Zazu in action will inspire and inform people of all ages that even children can create quick, nourishing meals with minimal adult assistance.

In the meantime, I've got to start thinking about what I'm getting at the Mobile Market tomorrow.  Kizzie will be on the register.


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