Thursday, August 10, 2017

Market shopping in Italy

One of my favorite things about Italy were all the markets that would be held at least once a week in even the smallest of towns.   Cities, of course, would have several neighborhood market days during the week.

This tradition started hundreds of years ago and you'll still see mention of it or illustrations in old story books and in art work from the past.

It was a way to bring other items for sale to the smaller towns and also for the farmers and other handicrafters to be able to sell what they had made.

For me?  It was a way to get the very freshest fruits and vegetables to eat.

This particular market was on the road between where I lived and the US Army Post where I worked.  It was only about a mile from my rental house.   This particular day was a rainy day.

There will be several people selling fruits and vegetables and often they do not have the same thing-- and sometimes the crowd will be very thick in front of a particular seller's space and that always made me stop and look to see what "I" might also need to notice that they were selling.
 
You can also buy fresh flowers at a very reasonable price. 
I would often do this in the spring time and buy some tulips.


The people selling fish and/ or meat had special enclosed cases
that were either heated (if the dishes were already cooked) or
refrigerated and/or on ice as you can see in this photo of one of the
fish vendors.

In my little town, of Lerino, every Friday night there was the
'very nice fish man' that was selling a large variety of already prepared
fish dishes.  I often bought food from him.  

 

 
Blood oranges!   My absolute favorite oranges.   This is a different
variety than I usually see, because even the outside skin turns red
on the sweetest type that I enjoyed every year that I lived  in Italy.  This photo
was taken during the spring and towards the end of the blood orange season.

The prices are for PER KILO and are in EURO.



And, oh my goodness... I never even liked asparagus until I had the bianco
(or white) asparagus.   It is covered up by straw/etc. so that the sun doesn't turn it
green and the flavor is so delicate and wonderful. 

When asparagus season rolled around every spring, the local restaurants and small
family owned 'trattorias' would start putting out special signs, in Italian, of course,
advertising their special WHITE ASPARAGUS spring dishes.

One of my favorite foods is the fresh asparagus risotto.   So good.
 
And in the spring, at this particular market, were always a couple of vendors
that sold plants for the yard or flower pots.  I always bought some
from both of them and put them in the hanging balcony rail flower pots.

 
Guess what is in this bucket?

Already 'soaked' beans so that you can start cooking them immediately!

 
Another one of my favorite foods!   One of my favorite pizzas had olives, marinated
artichokes, and prosciutto ham.  

 
And the springtime tulips.

 

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