15 July 2008
Vegetables at the market
Summer at the market means piles of beautiful vegetables. In fact, in the picture above there are summer vegetables like artichokes, tomatoes, and bell peppers, but also cold-weather vegetables like endives, potatoes, carrots, and leeks. In June, you can get it all.
The cherry tomatoes come from the town of Chinon in Touraine and are almost worth their weight in gold — €21.95 a kilo, and that's nearly $16.00 a pound in U.S. money. I guess they are worth it...
Personally, I'd probably go for the big fat cooking tomatoes in the second picture. They're just €1.00 a kilo. I bet they'd be good raw in a salad too, if they were trimmed up right. The cauliflowers just behind the tomatoes isn't the prettiest I've ever seen, but they are letting them go for just a euro apiece.
You want garlic with those tomatoes?
In the picture above, the sign doesn't go with the potatoes. It shows the price of the radishes, pictured below. They are €1.10 a bunch. The classic way to enjoy radishes is with salt, butter, and good bread. As for the potatoes, I think I'd steam or boil them and eat them cold with home-made mayonnaise.
Below, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant would make a good ratatouille. These have to have come from gardens or farms farther south, because in June we don't yet have produce like this in the Loire Valley. Here at La Renaudière, where we put in our garden a little late this year, we don't expect any tomatoes or eggplant much before mid-August. Our growing season runs from May 15 to about mid-October.
Actually, we bought eggplant and tomatoes at the supermarket a few days ago. Today's lunch is going to be a gratin using those, onions, and some yellow squash I just took out of the freezer. With olive oil and mozzarella cheese. Here's a link to a post I did on the subject a couple of years ago.