if there’s one thing that fascinates me about all other cultures [or at least almost all of them] besides the american culture is the abundance of local markets, and the availability of and demand for the freshest ingredients to use on a regular basis.
in america, we shop at supermarkets and pile our shopping carts with as much food as we can, hoping it will get us through at least the week, and the majority of that food is processed and filled with preservatives to allow us to do just that.
however, in pretty much every other country i’ve ever been to, people seem to buy their groceries for the day, and maybe the next morning’s breakfast, not for the entire week. it is even this way in germany, where the culture is very similar to that of the united states in a lot of ways. there are grocery stores [much smaller than the ones we have in the u.s.], but it is very common to shop at the local market to get fresh produce, meats, cheeses, breads, and whatever other items are available.
one of these markets happened to be on the same street as gianina’s apartment every tuesday, thursday, and saturday, and this was where we got our bread for breakfast on saturday morning. i brought my camera and had fun looking at everything and snapping photos of what i saw. flowers, pastries, sheepskin blankets, christmas greenery – you could find it all. it was crowded and made for awesome people-watching. some people were on a mission to get specific items, while others perused the stands, choosing whatever looked tasty or was priced low.
i kept thinking of everything i could make and eat if i lived where gianina lives, with a market that’s so convenient and such a large assortment of different foods, fresh as they can be. the culinary wheels in my head were turning away! it was much more inspiring than the aisles of kroger, to say the least.
someday i’ll live somewhere where i can walk to a market to get groceries for the day. that’s the plan, at least.