Wednesday, June 08, 2005


International Outdoor Food Market

Last Friday I went to the monthly International Outdoor Market in a neighboring village, where mostly Frenchmen (and a few Belgians) set up and sell their produce, bread (baked right there, in portable ovens, boggling my little mind) olives, cheese, sausages and the like. I was melting with happiness at the idea of sinking my teeth into some unpasteurised, unregulated, lable free fantasticness. I really was overwhelmed with excitement. Had I been unable to hear the cacophony of British teenagers (they had school off last week) blabbling in the backround, I would have sworn I was in France. I had to just stop, close my eyes and breath deeply. Ah yes, England is part of Europe afterall.

I had to control myself, since we weren’t going right home afterwards, but I did manage to buy some oustandinly piquant duck sausage, the largest artichokes I have ever laid eyes on (they took 2.5 hours to cook in the hugest pot I could find), a variety of glaced fruits (why not, right?) and some assorted puckery olives. The strawberries were tiny and luscious, I wanted to cry they tasted so divine. The line for the bread took about 15 minutes, but it was worth it to have a long golden baguette still warm from the oven placed into my waiting arms. It was crispy and light, and gone in about 10 minutes. I was in my own little corner of paradise.

To cook an artichoke:

First, using kitchen shears, trim off the spikey ends of the leaves. Trim the stem and submerge into a large pot of heavily salted boiling water with a slice or two of lemon. They will bob to the surface, so place a plate on top of them to keep them under. Cook for about 45 minutes to an hour. They are done when you can easily pull a leaf off. Serve with aioli, drawn butter or whatever tickles your fancy.


STOUFFER'S® Brand began in 1922, when Abraham and Mahala Stouffer opened a coffee shop in Cleveland, Ohio. Their sons later opened a chain of restaurants. At their first suburban restaurant, in the Shaker Square area of Cleveland take out demand grew, so they began freezing popular items and selling them at a retail outlet nearby. By 1954, the family had founded the frozen food operation bearing its name.

Stouffers was sold to Nestle in 1973

Their frozen Meatloaf dinner has 33 grams of protein per serving

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