The pantry had been a little bare of late so it was great to get to the markets on Saturday and stock up. It was a glorious day. After the recent rain it was nice to see some sun and the crowds were certainly out enjoying it.
So what did I buy?
The very first of the new season’s garlic. I love this. The bulbs are small and compact and there is no need to peel them, just remove the outer skin and then chop the little, perfectly white cloves.
Fennel – lots of fennel. At the end of the market, one of the stall holders was giving away her left over fennel. After a bumper crop, she really didn’t want to take the remainder home. So after having already bought a couple of bulbs, I ended up with a dozen more. We eat quite a lot of fennel but trying to use that much was a bit daunting, so I managed to give quite a few bulbs away. It wasn’t as easy as it sounds. Nearly everyone I approached had never cooked it and didn’t know what to do with it. Fennel is really versatile, you can bake it, make a gratin with it, finely shred it as part of a salad, or make it into a soup, which is what I have done with a couple of bulbs.
Apples – Pink Lady, Granny Smiths, Lady Williams and Fuji’s. Different apples for different uses. The Granny Smiths I generally cook with and a couple have already made in into the fennel soup. Pink Lady’s I also cook with a bit but they are a really good eating apple. The Lady Williams, I hadn’t tried before. An old variety, they are the genetic base for a number of the newer varieties. A red, crisp and slightly tart apple they are really delicious.
Add to that some strawberries, purple carrots, beetroot, cauliflower, ruby sweet potato and onions I think I’m set for a couple of weeks.