“Thank you Lord!”
That stretch of two-lane Highway 99 from Pemberton to Lillooet has more twists and turns, up and down steep grades, than you can imagine, alongside a protracted sweep of a cliff without concrete roadside barriers! One wrong foot-length swerve and it would be a sudden vertical fall to a very deep precipice. I was totally relieved when the road flattened as I reached the junction of Lillooet, British Columbia.
About five hours, 156 miles (251 km) from Vancouver via Whistler, I thought this story will be purely Lillooet, but the hair-raising switchbacks where I was forced sometimes to drive in the middle of the road, hoping not to encounter a vehicle the opposite way, made me pray for my dear life. At some point I can smell my brakes. Later I learned there have been one too many accidents, some tragic, on that rollercoaster drive. Next time I go to Lillooet, I will drive via the less strenuous Highway 12 from Lytton.
Why did I go to Lillooet BC? I wanted to ride one of Canada’s supposedly best train trips: the Kaoham Shuttle . But before boarding, I was keen on exploring the Lillooet Farmers’ Market which only happens on Fridays from 8:30 am till 1 pm. It’s a small market with around 15 vendors: baked goods, jam and jelly preserves, honey, locally grown seasonal produce, hand-crafted baskets, quilts and jewelry, Indian fried or baked buns called bannock, trivets and chopping boards chiseled from cedar, bedding plants, vegetables, annuals and perennials and more.
But for me the best find was to taste some of the best Apple Fritters in Canada. Look for Barbara Tuemp’s tent “Artisan Pastries”. At $2.00 each, a six-inch long blob, Barbara with a Mona Lisa smile, said there is no secret. She makes them from scratch: a sweet dough or doughnut dough (flour sugar, butter, eggs and yeast); cuts apples grown from her farm, and mixes them with the dough. “The best apples to use are the ripe Spartan and Empire varieties – they remain crunchy not mushy after deep frying in canola oil.” Barbara is not a fan of granny smiths – “they are not local to begin with, and they burn easily.”
|The Best Apple Fritters in Canada|
I think it is the yeast and apple variety that makes Barbara’s Apple Fritters stand out and well-known in the area including Whistler (she used to have a stand in the Farmers’ market there). Most recipes use baking powder or self-rising flour, and the apples can be all sorts.
|Barbara Tuemp's Booth|
Hurry as she sells out before noon. And the last Friday market for 2015 is on October 9th or you have to wait till May next year. If you want to order Apple Fritters from Barbara, which can only be picked up at the outdoor market, e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can call her at 250 256 4717.
The Farmers’ Market is on Lillooet’s wide 4-lane Main Street which you will hit once you enter the town. You won’t miss it as there is only one main road and the open-air market sticks out like a thumb across the post office.
|Trivets, Chopping Boards made from Cedar|
For more information about Lillooet’s Farmers’ Market, contact Carol Vanderwolf, Farmers’’ Market President and also a vendor (ask for her healthy mustard green chips), via e-mail email@example.com or you can call her at 250-256-1547
Bank machines are nearby and plenty of free street parking.
Next year: don’t miss the two-day market during the Apricot Tsaqwem Festival in July: Friday and Saturday