Those three words got me to buy a copy of Saveur, which I have never read before. That and this photo.
Garlic and tomatoes and olive oil. Foodie heaven. Here's the recipe although that's not what this post is about.
Food Markets. Amazing. I go nuts in them. The biggies like La Boqueria in Barcelona. And the small ones like the one whose name I do not know in Cannes. My local Farmer's Market. The huge one in Pellissane with the 5-foot-in-diameter paella pan. The one in Chiang Mai with the fried insects. The Flower Market in Hong Kong. It counts. Some flowers are edible.
I'm not sure what it is about Food Markets. After all, I'm not an especially adventurous eater. Saveur contained an entire article on the merchandising at these markets -- how fruit is stacked in pyramids because it's most appealing.
As much as I consider myself a market connoisseur, I had only been to one of the 30 markets on Saveur's map of significant markets. And I only went to that one once -- it's the Dane County Farmer's Market in Madison, Wisconsin, where I spent four years at college! I guess I wasn't a foodie back then. Hilary, my college friend, did go a lot, which I find surprising since she has lived in NYC since graduating.
Some of our best travel finds are from the markets: Provencial fabric which is now a quilt for Thing 2, bars of olive oil soap, spit-roasted Bresse-Gauloise chickens and vegetables, stinky cheeses whose names I immediately forgot, teeny tiny strawberries, utilitarian baking dishes, spices.
Next summer's vacation rental was selected in part by Saveur's mention that the most beautiful food market in Italy is nearby. I look forward to seeing the mosaic-arranged fruit and letting Neeracha sample the cavallo, the local delicacy of horsemeat. Stay tuned.