Mark and I arrived in Paris on Sunday. I don’t like a Sunday arrival because our pantry and fridge are always bare, and the grocery stores close at 1:00. Not surprisingly, we are never inspired to go shopping when we stumble into the apartment at 10:30 or 11:00 am, in desperate need of a nap and a shower. I’m not sure we have ever made it to the store on such an arrival morning, and this time was no exception. We snacked on a bag of chips and then bought a croque monsieur from a vendor at Trocadero while waiting for the Bra Toss festivities. I do not recommend it unless you are as famished as we were at that point. That night we dined out. Monday night Mark had a business dinner out, and I made myself a pizza. Tuesday night we ate with friends at a tiny restaurant called Le Severo, said by some to be the best steak and frites in Paris. Dinner was delicious, starting with this.
Salami and a hunk of French butter. Yeah, that happened. And we ate it, shamelessly, with this.
Followed by steak and crispy, twice-fried french fries, and topped off by chocolate mousse and creme caramel. Oh yes we did.
My point here is that it’s now Wednesday and we haven’t eaten a healthy meal at home (or anywhere, truth be told) since we arrived. Fortunately, today is market day, and I headed out with my little red grocery cart to load up on some veggies before our pants became too tight to button.
Going to the market used to fill me with terror. It’s all so French- the language, the money, the protocol at each vendor. Do I help myself? Is there a queue here somewhere? Am I invisible? I still get a little stressed, but I have learned that if I walk in there with fake confidence, I emerge at the other end feeling triumphant and marginally competent.
The President Wilson market is a bit of a hike with a cart, so I usually take the metro two stops to get there.
When I ascend from the metro, the market is just across the street.
The flowers always tempt me, but I make myself wait until I have done my shopping. It’s my little reward. Here are some pics from today’s offerings.
Somehow, the photo I took of all my purchases has disappeared into the cyber-junkyard, never to be seen again. I bought a big bunch of beautiful new potatoes, an artichoke, a bunch of kale that was so big it looked like a baby when she handed it to me in its brown paper wrapping, a huge bunch of scallions, some garlic and onions, and two gorgeous lemons. The potatoes I have already par-boiled and roasted, and will use them in a green salad tonight and with tahini sauce later, as recommended in Clotilde Dusoulier’s The French Market Cookbook (which I love). Tomorrow night will be a kale salad from Joy The Baker and a roasted vegetable tart. I was hoping to find asparagus and rhubarb today, but I guess it’s still too early. Actually, there was asparagus, but at $10 a pound, I had to pass. I’m hoping it will get less expensive as the season progresses.
Yeah, this post was pretty much all about food, wasn’t it? Sometimes you have to quit hanging out at museums and restaurants and get your hands in some real food. Because there is plenty more bread and cheese and tarte tatin waiting for me out there. And butter. Always the butter.
Enjoy some real food today, mes amis!