Monday, September 20, 2010

Market on Fire

Ah, the Saturday market in Beaune; one of my favorite markets in all the world for a variety of reasons; and I took so many photos I will do several posts. This is always my favorite vendor; she sells wild mushrooms and produce out of a double space and she is representative of the best of Burgundy~

Besides the incredible array and freshness of foods at French markets, there are two other things that set this market apart from some of the U.S. markets; one is the use of baskets for display, the other is the use of ardoise (slate) or faux-ardoise etiquettes (tag or label) for displaying the food name, the origin and the price~
I loved these so much on this trip that my friend Fabrice is going to get me a whole bunch of them next time he goes to Dijon and send then to me. Merci Fabrice :)

Back to the baskets, they are everywhere; the green of the tiny cornichons is set off perfectly with a vintage basket; I wish I were here longer, I would love to pickle some of these~

here is the other half of Madame's booth, the produce side; all baskets, and rather than using tables, she has planed the whole thing; a fantastic display~pale greens of the artichauts set off with petits onions blancs in her booth~
but her specialty is really mushrooms; here the cepe mushroom is now in season; Friday she and her family gathered about 300 pounds of wild mushrooms; she said this was a record; here they are in the crates~
she displays them in her booth in a large dark vintage basket, of course, on a bed of forest ferns; don't these look fake? Where is Snow White and a little Dwarf, they may be just around the corner?~
the Beaune market is the best in the region, and people come from all over to shop here; and taking a tour, you can see why; here by the way the ardoise sign is just set on top of the lettuce~
apples from Provence~
Gala apples from the Rhone Valley~
and Reine des Reinettes "queen of the little queens," this is the one I bought to make an apple tarte tonight, on the recommendation of Monsieur~
some of the ardoise signs are set up on stands and written in chalk~
others are written with a special pen on the newer faux-ardoise signs~
The markets of France are all so different, as in the U.S., the produce varies by region, the tempo and clientele of each market is different, but one thing is for sure, the markets of France are just pure visual delight; look at all these baskets and varying handles; those are the echallottes grises in front, I have been cooking with these all week and now I understand why they are the best; very pungent but flavorful~
look at the array of cabbages; notice again how they have planed the display, it's just all spilling down to meet you~
The displays sing to you: Cook with me! Eat me! Take me home and you will not be disappointed! Look at the thyme and chives in a basket of course~
more fresh herbs, and an oh-so French sign for bay leaves (Laurier)~
the outdoor market is extensive. But inside the adjacent halle, there are about 3 dozen vendors selling meats, cheeses, and fish~
this will be for another post; but the cheeses beckon~
and the eggs, in a basket again, invite you to make something delicious~
Everything is here at the market....
Today I made two trips to La Poste, to get all of my purchases home. Sad to be leaving tomorrow. It is a beautiful Indian-summer kind of a day here, and now that the work is done I am going for a drive with R to see if we can find anyone starting le Vendange or harvest. It is starting today, according to several vintners.


  1. Andrea, these images are so womnderful, the baskets, the colors of all of the produce, and I adore the little slate signs!

    I can see why it is a favorite market for people in the region!

    Art by Karena

  2. are a busy girl and a good shopper. Must be a fabulous cook as well from the sounds of it Andrea. Keep enjoying. XO

  3. What a treasure trove of natural jewels! Have a safe trip home. I will contact you very soon:)

  4. Wow! These photos are gorgeous. I'm inspired to paint them. Hopefully I'll do them justice. I love your whole blog. Makes me wish I could take a trip back to France. I just found you through Art by Karena. I especially love you post about 19th C art! I'm entering her giveaway for one of your basket too! They're lovely. What a perfect hostess/birthday/Christmas gift.

  5. Mon Dieu! The colors, the freshness--I can only imagine what gastronomic delights you created from such bounties. xo