Friday, September 24, 2010

A-Marketing We Go...

I decided to bring my camera along with me this morning to the open market. I am definitely living out my ideal grocery shopping scenario. We have a tiny fridge-- think of a big dorm-sized one-- so I can't keep many perishables on hand. We have one rack in the pantry where I keep coconut milk, nuts, etc., but otherwise all of our food is either on the counter or in the fridge-- which means I need to keep buying small amounts almost every day.

All week long, there are green grocers with their tents set up in the city square. These items are bought from a big market in Nuremburg in the wee hours of the morning, and many of these are imported from other countries. These stalls are convenient, but I try to wait for the actual farmers to come on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.
The daily vendors. They are becoming familiar with me, and today one of them taught me the word for "basket," very patiently writing it down when it was clear that I was not quite getting the pronunciation.

My first shopping day is Wednesday, when I go to buy produce, wild vension, and whatever seasonal items show up in various booths-- this week it was mixed wild mushrooms and wild cranberries. There is a spice vendor there as well as a Turkish man with all sorts of olives, cheeses, hummus, etc.

Fridays are the biggest market day. There are lots of meat vendors, along with breads booths, fish mongers, and farmers. This probably doesn't look too appetizing to you, but this marinated turkey is wunderbar.

Bread cart. I love the old-timey look!

My favorite is the rotisserie truck! You can buy whole roasted hens and geese. I do plan on picking up a goose one of these days, but I usually buy two small chickens-- one to pick apart with Amelia for lunch (she gets out of school early on Fridays,) and the other to use the meat and bones for chicken stock and soups during the week. I tend to be kind of shy with the camera, but asking this man if I could take his pictures warmed him right up, and in turn, he asked me some questions about living here. I love making relationships with the vendors, it makes the whole process of shopping so enjoyable!
Roast Geese.

Why so nervous?

There is also the Herb Lady, who makes beautiful wreaths and little woodsy decorations.

She speaks English pretty well and makes really good pestos and chutneys, and goes to great trouble to explain things to me. She told me today that there will be a festival coming up that the churches celebrate, kind of like Thanksgiving, in honor of the harvest. This explains one of the fancier displays today.

And maybe the presence of a basket weaver...

...And a clog maker...?
It's really nice to see everyone out and about, enjoying the beautiful Fall weather. There was a large group of people from a nearby elderly home.
And look who I ran into! It's Ingrid!
(She tells me she'll be at the upcoming flohmarkt, so stay tuned for that shopping fun!)

This is what I came home with today, minus the meats.

Anyway, I'd say Friday is my biggest shopping day. Many of the farmers return on Saturday as well, so it's nice to walk around and look as a family, but not needing to do much actual purchasing. Every other week or so, I go to a big grocery store to buy some dry goods and such. Then most days, I realize that I am missing one or two items and I go to a little grocery about four stores away on our street. There are little shops nearby that are a mix between a deli and a butcher shop, called a Metzgerei, where I buy meat if I need some for dinner that night. All in all, I get by without really going to a real grocery store for a long time! Food goes through our kitchen quickly, but it is very easy to restock. And I must mention that our food budget is about the same here as it was in Portland!

In light of all of the food allergies I have had to juggle for Jeff and Amelia, and some nagging health issues, our family is transitioning to a grain-free lifestyle. I took a picture today to turn in to a contest on a website that has been fun and inspiring for me, detailing what our family eats in a typical week (delicious-looking child not included.)
Not pictured, but written in: 1 Kilo Fresh Turkey, 1 Kilo Wild Venison, 2 Rotisserie Chickens, and 4 Dozen Pastured Eggs.

Although it could be difficult to make such a big switch, the setup here is so ideal, it has actually simplified my life quite a bit. We basically eat meat, eggs, vegetables, fruit, nuts, seeds and butter. And I enjoy some other dairy. We are all pretty happy with this, and of course feeling good too! I love doing all of the marketing, and look forward to my shopping days very much.

Thanks for coming along with me today!


Anonymous said...

Oh I am so envious and SO totally happy for you at the same time!!


ShackelMom said...

I loved going shopping with you! I would SO love to meet Ingrid! YOUr food looks and sounds wonderful!

doro said...

That looks like so much fun! I can hear the contentment in your words.

When I was growing up in CO (before we went to the PI), my Dad pastored a tiny church. Many of the congregants were quite poor, but liked to hunt. Oftentimes, they couldn't tithe monetarily, but would bring our family whole sides of venison that they had just hunted. Venison was my favorite meat when I was A's age!

Please eat a roast goose for me.

Unknown said...

I love this! How do you make a blog? Can you be my blog teacher?

Grandma Seelye said...

Thank you so much for all the pictures and details!! Makes me feel like I'm right there with you. Love you.

Great Aunt Gretchen said...

Oh my goodness-charming is the word!!I love the buildings, cobblestone stretts & food tents. It's perfect for you! I'm so glad you enjoy really cooking & doing it beautifully. You sound very happy there.
I'm curious how the setting will change in winter.

Mullins said...

We are so blessed to live here and even more blessed to have Ariana as our personal documentarian and even more amazing personal chef. I don't know anyone else who can bring out the very best in these ingredients she finds at the market. Sigh.

Nathan said...

Fantastic post. I always want people to blog about daily life, and you are doing it very well.

Aunt Robin said...

Yes, I'm with Nathan. That's what I'm most interested in... daily life. You're doing a wonderful job, Ariana! Thanks so much.

Elie said...

Oh! How I love and long for your lifestyle. I could do it here, but our society just isn't set up to make it the most reasonable way to live. I am so happy you are living it up. This is the perfect lifestyle for you. I would LOVE to be invited over for dinner at your place once again. I guess we couldn't walk over, though..
I love that Jeff chimed in above. I am glad he appreciates your wonderful-ness!