Wednesday, August 22, 2007

remembering paris...

We are in the midst of prime harvest season, but soon I return to work and say goodbye to weekday mornings at the Greenmarket. Although I had no pressing need for food today, I decided to take advantage of the final weeks of summer.

I was not disappointed. Peaches were sweet. Keith's Farm's shiny bronze shallots reappeared after I had missed them on Saturday. I sought out a new farm for micro-greens, to replace the ones I had sworn off due to the radish-carrot dispute. I discovered deep purple string beans that bleed into your cooking water until it turns pink. But my favorite find of the day was a simple head of sweet, buttery lettuce labeled "Sucrine: the French kind". I was whisked back to Paris with one nibble.

In April, we discovered "the French kind" of lettuce at the Popincourt open-air market in the 11th arrondissement. Jordan and I met in Paris for 10 days. The exhilaration of our culinary experiences on that trip are the mainspring of my burgeoning food fetish. The first weekend back in New York City, I found myself meandering through the Union Square Greenmarket and down to specialty shops in Greenwich Village recalling the Parisian style of marketing and devouring life's simple pleasures. I saw no reason to return to efficient consumption habits of the American automaton, and I quickly discovered I was not alone. In no time, I became a newbie in the vast world of foodie culture.

With a second bite of sucrine, I decided it was finally time to follow through with the little gift for Jordan I had been planning since April. I was to have our very first food photos printed. I had my fun with iPhoto and gave each image an antique look. I had purchased white square frames that would sharply pop on the pale robin's egg blue walls of his kitchen. All that remained was the trip to a print shop for precision cropping and professional quality printing. Since I'm historically more of a drugstore photo developer, I was pleasantly surprised when the pros took me around back, suggested subtle improvements, and let me have the final say in every decision for the same 29 cents I would've paid in RiteAid. The results were perfect!

(Left to right: Fromages...mmm! Fourme d'Ambert, Selles sur Cher, Crottin de Chavignol, and dates on a branch, all from Popincourt marché. The richest Hot Chocolate in the world, unconfirmed, discovered by my favorite flâneur. Huîtres une douzaine. If you bring a plate to a fish market, they will shuck the oysters for you. They were even placed on a bed of seaweed and garnished with lemon. We brought them up to our apartment and devoured them.)

1 comment:

Krissy said...

Dear culinary queen,
What is perfect? If I reach half of your perfection, as described by your inspired writings of delectable entrees, and photographs using lovely presentations and colors, I will be a very lucky woman. I look forward to reading about your wine trail walks and perfectly placed rustic cabin, during the latest Finger Lakes getaway.