The Market ~ Canino Produce, Houston

If you are from Bharath, you know how the general markets are. You will find vendors selling vegetables, fruits, grains and utensils etc, all at one place. It would not be a giant, gleaming supermarket where you would be silently staring at row after row of sticker-clad shelves. A market would be full of live people talking to you. You would be inquiring about things, bargaining on prices, paying in cash and counting the change. A whole lively experience is what you would get in those markets.

Last weekend, we visited one such market here in Houston called Canino Farmers Market. It was really an entirely different experience. The place hums with well-stocked, reasonably priced stalls that carry a variety of produce and one of a kind items from South America. Chaotic and endearing, what it lacks in polish it makes up in personality. It is a lively place to shop for fruits, vegetables, grains and kitchen stuff. There are also few stalls selling plants and fruit trees. We bought a flowering shrub called Nandi vardanam from a young lady. Her name is Cilia, and she was friendly and knowledgeable and has excellent collection of plants. If you are into gardening, don’t miss out her stall.

The other very fabulous finding was dear mangoes. We were surprised and delighted to find relatively tasty and large size golden mangoes. Dozen for $9, they were the best tasting mangoes we ever had here in the USA so far. If you are into good quality mangoes, go soon and get a dozen before the summer ends. There is a variety of other fruits available as well, like cantaloupes, watermelons, oranges, papaya etc. at low prices.

The market opens at 6AM everyday. If you are planning a Saturday trip, go early in the morning for the first pick. In the front, you will see a large covered shed with “Canino Produce” board. Go to the back of the shed into the open area, where you can buy fruits like mangoes directly from the wholesale traders. Keep some dollar notes ready. They take only cash and no credit cards. There is also a busy bakery opposite the farmer’s market where you can get a variety of Mexican desserts.

Canino Farmer Market makes a nice, half-day getaway for produce-pilgrims. If you are planning for a trip, I wish you fruitful and cheerful experience. If you make it, do let me know how you like the whole deal.

Here are some photos of the Market from our recent visit.

Canino's Produce Inc
Canino’s Farmers Market


Bought key limes 25 for $1 here


Bought Mexican Squash two for $1 here


Tempting Chilli Varieties


Friendly People


Beans and Grains


Kitchen Stuff


Cilia’s Plant and Fruit Tree Stall


Any day I could buy such sweet Mangoes is a good day!

For those of you interested to go, here are the address and the directions:

Canino Produce
2520 Airline Dr.
Houston, TX 77009
Phone: 713-862-4027
Map it

Directions: From Sugar Land – Take 59 North and to 610 North. On 610, take exit 17A to Airline Drive. Turn right on Airline Drive, and you will see Canino’s produce immediately to your left. Parking is very crowded but free, in front of Canino’s or to the sides of the open stalls.

25 Comments

  • By moi, June 29, 2009 @ 6:57 am

    Lovely photos, and what a beautiful word-picture too, comparing Canino to our Indian markets – very apt! I’ve taken pictures of my local Mumbai market too, because I love shopping there, with people interacting (with other people and even animals, especially cats hoping for scraps at the fishmonger’s, or near a grocer’s shop because he gives them milk daily).

  • By Priya, June 29, 2009 @ 8:03 am

    I’m going to be in Houston the weekend after the 4th. My brother is going to confirm I’m crazy when I ask him to take me to a Farmers market :) The beans & grains stall, and the kitchen stuff remind me of monda market in Hyd.

  • By madhuri, June 29, 2009 @ 9:47 am

    lovely pics! wish we have a branch in dallas too :( i visited houston 3 weeks ago.Wish I known this earlier :)

    Thanks for sharing.Made and saved a note of the addrs.i will drop by next time when I visit houston

  • By Hari Chandana, June 29, 2009 @ 10:42 am

    Amazing snaps… very nice info…

  • By Ashley, June 29, 2009 @ 10:45 am

    Oh, what I would do to have a market like that near my home! Thanks for sharing!

  • By My3, June 29, 2009 @ 10:48 am

    AWESOME!! It reminds me of the Devraja market in Mysore. So beautiful. I was in Houston 7 years ago. Maybe next trip I will see this market. Thanks for the lovely pictures.

  • By Cilantro, June 29, 2009 @ 10:52 am

    This market reminds me of the one on HWY 99 north of Seattle. They close down in winter though.

  • By vineela, June 29, 2009 @ 11:05 am

    Hi Indira,
    Really it looks like indian market.
    Thanks for sharing.

  • By Madhuram, June 29, 2009 @ 12:56 pm

    The kitchen stuff is enough to entice me to go to Canino’s if I was there. Mangoes look good too. We too are enjoying our share of mangoes here after a long time. Where we used to live in US it was either costly or did not taste good, but here in Ontario we also get a dozen for $5-7 and it’s really sweet.

  • By Shobana, June 29, 2009 @ 1:07 pm

    I wish I lived there…do u know if the vendor there is selling good tortilla presses??? The vendors have displayed their wares beautifully and so clean and organized…makes u want to buy a whole lot of things, even though one may not need it!

  • By shikha, June 29, 2009 @ 1:52 pm

    Indira,
    was reading your majjiga mirapakayalu art.
    Superb ! as usual.
    You get Boodida gummadi in Hongkong market/mama markets in our Houston..They are amazing vegetable markets..

  • By Uma, June 29, 2009 @ 2:10 pm

    I wish we had such a market around my place. I always look out for Farmer’s Market.

  • By BDSN, June 29, 2009 @ 3:46 pm

    I love to shop in the farmers market anytime.The veggies are very fresh,assorted and simply cheap. Hey Indira!!! I added two of your links to my website!!One is the Food Events and another is the blog list. Hope it is ok with you. If else please let me know.

  • By Diane, June 29, 2009 @ 9:23 pm

    Fun! I love markets so much – the livlier the better.
    Those mangos look like what we in CA call “Champagne” or “Manila” mangos. They come from Mexico and are the most flavorful variety I’ve had here. They are no longer showing up in CA, as the season is over.

  • By arundati, June 30, 2009 @ 12:33 am

    lovely pics…and i agree with priya, reminds me of monda market in secunderabad

  • By DK, June 30, 2009 @ 12:57 am

    aaah this totally reminded me of the mandi(s) back in India….all that rushing pushing and the sweat! Sometimes I totally crave that in the middle of all this neat and orderly shopping – Nothing like home as they say! :)

  • By Archana, June 30, 2009 @ 11:46 am

    Oh I feel so bad to be in CA and not in TX :-( The mangoes sound so tempting!

  • By Indira, June 30, 2009 @ 2:11 pm

    Thank you all for your lively mandi sandadi like notes. I really wish that you were here so that I can share the sweet mangoes with you all.

    Dear Moi: Would love to read about the Mumbai market. Any new vegetable/fruit findings at the market?

    Priya: Look for the mangoes. They are really the best. Have a wonderful summer vacation with your brother.

    Cilantro: We wanted to go that market in Seattle, but missed out. Heard it’s a nice place to shop for fresh produce.

    Shobana: They have tortilla presses in different sizes, from palm sized to a big roti size, from $5 to $120. Lots of variety.

    Shikha: Will check the HongKong Market for boodida gummadi. Thanks!

    BDSN: So good to see you after such long time. How is the little one doing?
    Thanks for adding the links. Please, there is no need for permission. Links are there for us to add and share.

    Diane: I was wondering about the name of this variety. Thanks for the info. Yes, the season is almost over, another one or two weeks here, I think.

  • By vani, June 30, 2009 @ 3:49 pm

    Hi Indira,

    It looks really nice and clean . i wish i was there to go to that farmers market. especially the kitchen section. i love cooking so much and i would always look to shop for fresh veggies and fruits. i live in plano, texas. Does any one know any farmers market in the area? i know there is a big farmers market in downtown Dallas. pls let me know if any one knows farmers market in the area . i would love to shop there. i will defenetly visit the farmers market in houston and i have noted down the address . let me know friends …:)

  • By Kay, July 2, 2009 @ 8:03 am

    Wow!!! That’s a market, I’d love to go. Those papayas look huge!!! Do they have those mexican unglazed cokware?

  • By Dipti Patel, July 2, 2009 @ 4:37 pm

    Hey India,
    I love reading your blog, as I can relate to many familiar things you write about Houston. I actually live about 10 minutes away from Canino farmers market, and we do our weekly produce shopping from there. we get our Indian vegetables from lady named Maria, and her phone # 832 768 0193. she always keeps desi veggies such as ratalu, turiya, tindora and karela.

  • By Abi, August 11, 2009 @ 4:53 pm

    I have been living in Houston for the past 4 years. I have been looking for a good produce market ever since I saw one in California.
    Thanks so much for the information.

  • By alex, January 18, 2010 @ 11:58 pm

    Thank you so much for posting about the farmer’s market! I grew up in Houston and used to go to this market every Saturday morning. Now when I go back to visit I always make it a point to stop in and get something fresh. Although it’s not in the best part of town, it is one of the best markets in all of Houston. By the way I found your website while searching for Palak Paneer recipes. I prepared yours tonight and it was FANTASTIC! Thanks a bunch.

  • By Nidhi, April 8, 2010 @ 3:24 pm

    Any idea from where to buy fresh Amla (Indian Gooseberry) in Houston

  • By Chitra janarthanan, March 4, 2012 @ 11:51 pm

    Hi,

    Thanks for sharing the info on fresh fruits and vegetables. beautiful pictures. i am looking for Kodulapuli. This is a tamil word. ( here they called camachile). Some one mentioned they have seen in Houston Casino Farmer’s market. Have anybody seen that lately. we live in clearlake near NASA, Texas, usa

    Thanks for your response.
    chitrajana

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