This week welcomes Santa Fe’s International Folk Art Market, running Thursday through Sunday, July 7 to 10, 2022, to Museum Hill. It’s a joyful kaleidoscope of folk art and activity, but it’s also truly something of a miracle. This year, 164 artists from 43 countries will gather, from the Mexican highlands of Chiapas to Fatumnasi Village in Indonesia, to Ukraine’s Carpathian Region. Even during last year’s pandemic, which saw numbers of artists and shoppers greatly reduced, and staggered over two weekends, the market generated approximately $2.2 million in sales. Most of this money goes back home with the artists. There, it’s reinvested in their local communities and co-ops. Often, artists make more during the few days of the International Folk Art Market than they can selling by more traditional means the rest of the year.
THE FOOD FEST
Visitors to the market can sample food from around the world, too. I spoke with Adrienne Murray, the market’s director of marketing and community engagement, about this year’s Food Bazaar. “We’re excited to once again offer a global cornucopia of cuisines. The vendors are all small, independently owned restaurants from Santa Fe and surrounding areas, but serve up a world of flavors. I want to give a shout-out to Brian Graves, the volunteer coordinator for the Food Bazaar. We couldn’t do it without him, as well as the chef vendors who supply massive quantities of special dishes to shoppers, artists, and our 800-plus volunteers.”
FROM THE AMERICAS
Sabor Peruano will have empanadas, and their papas rellenas, potatoes stuffed with a savory mixture of ground beef, eggs, olives, onions, raisins, and then deep-fried. Don’t miss these! Another intriguing option will be the Peruvian beverage made from purple corn, chicha morada, a drink from indigenous Inca Natives. The corn is boiled down with pineapple skins, cinnamon, cloves, and sugar to make a sweet and refreshingly cool beverage, not to mention one with amazing color. Sisters Adriana Brawley and Susana Hamilton, both originally from Peru, own the restaurant.
Platero Fry Bread & Navajo Tacos sells exactly that. Dora Platero and Shawna Platero Jiron serve up golden platter-size discs of fried dough, alternately flaky, crispy, chewy, and tender, depending on the particular bite. The family also offers lamb fajitas and blue corn fry bread.
If you’re one of those folks who thinks “funnel cakes” and other “fair food” whenever attending a sizable celebration, there’s a vendor for you too — the popular Ortega’s. Should you just need a quick pick-me-up snack, check out Selena’s Biscochitos or the samplings from New Mexico Sabor Salsa. Quench your thirst with a Mexican popsicle from the Paleta Bar or something fresh-squeezed from the Serum Juice Bar.
FROM THE REST OF THE WORLD
Two different restaurants will be serving Indian foods, both with an emphasis on fresh market ingredients. Paddy Rawal, the chef-owner of Raaga-Go, will be offering bento-style boxes that include items like his popular house-made samosas and chaats. I adore the creative mix of ingredients included in any chaat blend, a multi-textured almost salad-like toss-up. Chef Paddy’s dishes are inspired by his Mumbai roots but incorporate a contemporary flair.
From a newer chef on the Santa Fe scene, will be dishes from the Aruna Café. Aruna owner, Chef Dhiru, hails from south India, so his food reflects a slightly different and equally tasty combination of flavors. He came to Santa Fe a few years ago to help open Paper Dosa and ended up staying. Aruna serves just take-out meals available on Fridays, so this will a treat to get their dishes each day during market.
Chef Nath’s Khmer Cuisine will be providing a mix of Cambodian and Thai dishes, including the ever-popular pad thai. A constant for many years at market has been Ahmed Obo’s Jambo Café who once again will be serving his Afro-Caribbean curries and more.
I can’t wait to sample it all. See ya there!
International Folk Art Market: July 7 – 10, 2022
Museum Hill, Santa Fe
Advance tickets required, with timed entries, available at Folkartmarket.org
Tickets are $15 – $25, depending on day and time, plus processing fees
Free parking and shuttles at the Midtown Campus at 1600 Saint Michael’s Dr., east of Cerrillos Road
Food options include vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options. Actual dishes may vary depending upon availability and the chef’s whim.
Story and photographs by Cheryl Alters Jamison.
Four-time James Beard Foundation Book Award-winning author Cheryl Alters Jamison is the host of Heating It Up on KTRC and is now the “queen of culinary content” for SantaFe.com. Find new stories about the Santa Fe food scene each week on SantaFe.com.