Sunday, 27 September 2009

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness




It's that time of year. The markets around France are brimful with the season's best produce, I love it. These are a few snaps taken as Karen and I wandered around Bergerac market yesterday morning.



Oysters are everywhere. There are even stalls by the roadside. Generally available when the month has an 'R' in it, the French LOVE oysters and so do I.


Down in Basque country, they like to eat them with sizzling hot little spicy sausages called lou-kenkas which have some resemblance to the chorizos of Spain.


I like them with a finely diced scrap of red onion, a splash of tabasco and washed down with a chilled sauvignon blanc!



Chestnuts were once something of a staple here, along with walnuts, both are highly calorific.


Oh for a duck sausage with chestnuts and fried green apple on the side.




A glut of tomatoes. Sensibly, this stall sold enormous buches of basil. The air was perfumed, I could smell the basil from fifty paces.




Gateaux, gateaux, gateaux! lashings of custard with mine, or should that be the rather nicer named Creme Anglais.





OK, so I know it's just a box of carrots, but the point is this was just one of the many small holders selling true garden produce. There's no interference from the wise ones in Brussels here. You know the types, passing laws to ban bent bananas etc....



Finally, I leave you with a nice collage of gourds and things, so, just a taster of a French market. I'm off now as there's a bottle of 2005 Bergerac rouge with my name on it. By the way of stating the obvious, the post title is from John Keat's (31 October 1795 – 23 February 1821) Ode to Autumn.

40 comments:

  1. What a fantastic Inspiration for the Autumn. Your pictures are so wonderful an I just can taste the smell of the cookies.. mhmmm what a pleasure!

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  2. Hi Zwergenwelt

    Thanks so much for your kind words. Markets are such a great way to spend a morning. I'm having so much fun playing with my new camera at the moment, one day I'll master it but until then I'll keep trying

    Rob

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  3. A dream, that's what it must be like living there, wandering around the markets, visiting old estates. A dream..... a lovely dream.

    Great post.

    Jen

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  4. I love the look of the market... so colourful and must be fun.. ~bangchik

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  5. What a lovely market and yes it was good to see carrots earth and twist and all.

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  6. Looks like a very nice way to spend the day, seeing and reading about the food made me hungry. Great pictures!

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  7. I would just love some fall outings, visiting markets. Your photos are so clear...and have me actually looking forward to begin thinking about 'fall'. It hasn't arrived here, just yet (the weather has cooled off a bit, but it's definitely not autumn by typical standards!). I haven't been excited about seeing pumpkins and gourds and mums, etc...because I'm still into the thoughts of summer...but it is getting to be time to 'let go' of the old and welcome the new. A glass (or 2) of french wine sounds tempting!

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  8. Looks so attractive all grouped together like that. Would love to shop in such a place. I like the bits of dirt attached and the original look of a few bends here and there. Beautiful post Rob.

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  9. Thank you for sharing your journey to the market. It makes me want to go out and buy tomatoes and carrots.

    I always enjoy your photos.

    Noelle

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  10. Hello, in love with your blog, must follow you to enjoy new posts.
    Cariños from Chile
    María Cecilia

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  12. That produce looks wonderful. Your post is making my mouth water! lol The photos beautifully capture the essence of market day.

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  13. What great pictures Rob. I remember hot chestnut sellers as a boy in London.

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  14. Stupendous display of wondrous produce but I am especially gaga over the gourds (et al).
    (PS. I hope you don't mind I have used your photo with attribution, of course, and a link to this wonderful post, to promote such marvelous specimens).

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  15. Thanks for that Rob - I was only a bit peckish before I read your post .... now, I'm starving!!!

    Thanks for the link to fernatix. I've had a lovely look round their site and can feel a bit of a shop coming on :)

    Have a glass of that Bergerac for me - Cheers!

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  16. It is a wonderful time of year to see all the bounty from the summer past regardless of what country.Autumn brings forth the harvest!
    I was in France last year at this time and thouroughly enjoyed the food wine and charm of the Alsace region! I have looked back on your previous posts..it was a pleasure!I surely will be back.

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  17. I love the displays of vegetables - everything looks so good. Great photos! What kind of camera did you get?

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  18. Hi Folks

    I'm quite pleased with some of these photos.

    I recently bought a Lumix G1 and considering that most pics have been taken on intelligent auto, I have to say that the image quality is pretty good. Eventually I'll figure out how to use it properly, there's so much it can do.

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  19. Ah Rob, oysters stir cravings here across the pond as well, your way of eating them sounds perfect to us too. Make that a double shot of hot sauce and a squeeze of lemon. I need to write down your wine recommendations for The Financier. Thanks for taking us along to see smiling vendors and beautiful produce. And baked goods.
    Frances

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  20. This is just a mean post. I was readinga nother blogger's discussion of her apple crips, and now you take it 5 steps further--a feast of French joie de vivre. Cruel. Lovely. Cruel.

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  21. Beautiful, wonderful, sensational... nothing like the fresh garden produce and especially the open marketplace. We still have squash, tomatoes, broccoli, lots of herbs... but within the next few weeks a frost will end our season. Beautiful photos Rob!

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  22. Delightful Post! I prefer Wellfleet Bay oysters with a bit of onion and lemon with a dab of something spicy and tomatoey... washed down with a fine chilled bubbly. Wonderful photos of the colorful and abundant life of your market! Love the Keats! "... and gathering swallows twitter in the skies."

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  23. I'm fortunate to have 5 farmers markets all within a few miles of my house, although some are only seasonal. Reading your post and admiring the photos made me realize I've visited at least one market a week all summer. Although it's often more convenient to do all my shopping at one of the larger grocery stores, nothing compares with the experience of wandering through stalls of fresh from the farm produce and other homemade goodies.

    Aren't we lucky?

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  24. Wonderful market trip! The veggies, sweets, nuts and everything make such great photos.

    You mentioned the ginger. If you have a water feature, you can even put the ginger in a pot to sink in the water so that the root is no more than 3-4" underwater. I wedged a root between some rocks this spring and the ginger plant is now 3 feet high. It will bloom next year.

    Cameron

    PS Our Charm is trying to rally, eating well, and being cheerful. The vet says she has weeks or months, but not years. I'm spending a lot of time with her and in the garden, and not much on the blogs lately.

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  25. Just stopping by to say congratulations on your Blot. award;-)

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  26. Congrats on winning the Blotanical award! A well deserved win!!

    Jen

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  27. Those markets are great, as well as your pictures. Rob,I am happy for your win on Blotanical!Congratulations and hugs!

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  28. Autumn Joy! Congratulations, Rob.

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  29. Hey Rob... just wanted to say Congrats on your Award and also that I've appreciated your comments and updates on Cambo ;-)

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  30. Congratulations on your award...and thank you for the photos of the market...my mouth is watering...for oysters on the half shell...and sweet, earthy carrots...oh my!!!!

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  31. Hey Rob - just spotted the Blotanical award. Well done you - fully deserved as far as I'm concerned! :)

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  32. It's just as well that I do not live in France as I would be more overweight than I already am with those wonderful gateaux :) What an abundance freshness and such choice both in the local markets and supermarkets. Your photos brng it all back. I am green with envy. Many congratulations on the well deserved Blotanical award Rob.

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  33. A big congrats on your Best European Blog win! Well deserved! :-)
    Frances

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  34. My stomach did an involuntary rumble when I viewed these images, please, stop it, I'm trying to lose a few Italian pounds! Big Cabinet Franc and Merlot harvest tomorrow, will need my strength, well that's my excuse.

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  35. Hi Rob, I have just discovered your blog, and it is truly delightful. Something so-o-o French in way food is presented so aesthetically and savoured so ardently. Reminds me when a friend from Brittany visited me and I took her to the beach. As we explored the rock pools, I perceived interesting sea creatures, but she decided she was hungry and saw it all as food! Cheers, catmint

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  36. I would buy some of those oysters!

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  37. Looks like a great outing, Rob. It's nice to see that farmer's markets are more popular here in the states than they used to be. The veggies make the best pictures, but of course I'd most want to try the sweets!

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  38. Terrific photos of all the luscious fall produce Rob. Makes me want to find a market ~ if only we had one like it nearby.

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  39. Ooh! I just love those French markets - how I wish I could be there!

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  40. I miss the markets from over there. I wish we had some in our area, but we have a once a week farmers market, and of course not much is offered. At least you know it is fresh.
    I think that the carrots look fine just the way they are! I got an email telling about the baby carrots that they sell here. You wonder why they are so perfect looking. They take the crooked carrots, run it through a machine to make baby carrots, and then they soak them in bleach! That is why after a few days at home they develop the white coating. Needless to say I am not buying those or eating them anymore!

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