Learn To Love The Market

Finding time for real meals in a college setting is hard to do for a lot of students, myself included. The effort of preparing, cooking and waiting is overshadowed by fast food and the convenience of delivery. For most of my week I try to make my meals at home. It gives me a sense of pride and it feels great to taste something I've made. It's also way healthier for you. One of the main conveniences of living in downtown Atlanta and on the Georgia State campus is the Sweet Auburn Curb Market. About a 5 minute walk from outside my dorm straight down Edgewood Avenue, the market is nestled in the city and has been for quite some time. First opened in 1924 as the Municipal market, this place has become hub for grocers, bakeries and restaurants as well. Without a grocery store nearby, this market is where I go to get many types of fresh vegetables, fruits or meats. Every time I walk in I get a sense of wonderment and excitement as I scope out the different shops and stores looking for ingredients for a week of meals or maybe just a quick bite to eat. The place is dotted with multiple vendors each with their own personality and look. 

Located right next to an Atlanta Streetcar stop
In addition to the grocers, this small market is also filled with lovely restaurants and shops that I have always visited when I have down time from classes. I even work at one of these. I'm an employee at the original Grindhouse Killer Burgers inside the Curb Market and they are just one of many delicious options here. Just Add Honey, a tea shop with delicious options and variety, caters to the college students by giving great tea for a very affordable price, originally located along Auburn Avenue they moved inside to the Curb Market. Right next door is the Sweet Auburn Bakery, where you can satisfy your sweet tooth on a bunch of pastries. This place has always been great for me and every week when I finish work, I stop by there for some cakes or cookies. 

Just Add Honey
Although it might seem weird at first to get fresh vegetables and meats from a market, it can really help to bring great cooking to your life at a very reasonable price. With $50 and the patience to really pick your ingredients, you can get meals for the whole week with the added bonus of being farm-fresh. Shopping in this manner teaches you carefulness and planning with the food to make sure they don't spoil. I figured that out the hard way my first time buying food from the market. This compels me to cook meals with the ingredients I have on hand way more often, instead of eating out. I try to use all of my ingredients to create very interesting and surprising dishes.

While some colleges may have large grocery stores and dining halls, some are in more rural areas or too compact for that. One thing that is certain is the abundance of these markets and the food that they can provide. It's always good to support a local business and this is a great way to do that along with getting a bulk of fresh produce and meats to make your meals taste great. Find your local market and take a look around and make something for yourself and see how you like it. At first it's hard to get into the rhythm, but soon you'll be making fresh dishes in no time!