Farmers’s Market By Proxy (Or: Andrew’s Adventures in Vegetable Land)

Because I was feeling sick and sorry for myself on Sunday, but we still needed vegetables, I made sad eyes at Andrew and sent him out <strike>into the wild woods</strike> to the market to buy vegetables on my behalf.

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His brief: to buy eggs because we were out of them (this turned out to be totally untrue when I checked the fridge later) and vegetables; we really do *not* need meat or pasta right now.  I probably should have mentioned bread, which would have been nice, but I didn’t.  I could also have supplied a slightly more detailed shopping list, but I was busy going back to sleep and having more nightmares, so it was left to the ingenuity of Andrew to determine our vegetable intake for this week.

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The results would suggest to an uneducated eye that Andrew really, really likes chard and related vegetables, and also that he has a thing for carrots.  Apparently, neither of these things are true.  He just figured that one lot of carrots were curly and the other were colourful and mildly frightening to behold, so clearly we needed both of those, and then he got a bit confused about how much chard one household needs…

Let’s see what we’ve got, eh?

My first comment, when Andrew walked in the door was “I sense that you have bought purple cauliflower”.  And indeed, he had.  This was not psychic ability on my part – it’s simple fact that if you show Andrew something purple, he will gravitate toward it.

He also bought fractal broccoli, because if there is one thing Andrew has grasped about my approach to farmers’ market shopping, it’s that if it looks weird, I’ll buy it.

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(actually, Andrew has grasped rather more than that, but I was amused at the degree to which he played the colourful / weirdly-shaped vegetable card)

Andrew’s market strategy, he tells me, was to head straight for Rita’s stall, where he picked up the purple cauliflower and some gigantic but very glossy silverbeet, and was then taken under the wing of Rita and her daughter who expressed concern at my absence, and told him what I would buy.

Yep.  Fennel is generally a safe bet, and Fat Hen is my favourite of Rita’s leafy greens (I keep trying to like the bitter greens, but they are really not my thing).

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Andrew also found some very strangely shaped carrots and decided that these were relevant to my interests.  He then moved on to one of the more colourful vegetable stalls and realised that terrifyingly large yellow carrots and more delicate purple carrots were also appropriate.  I’m going to have to think of something very clever to do with carrots in the next few days, I think.  Maybe roast them with balsamic vinegar and sugar and parmesan?

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We haven’t had candy-striped beetroot for a while, so Andrew felt that these were definitely necessary, and then he couldn’t resist the rainbow chard, either.  Given that beetroot leaves are pretty much the same as chard, this brought our household chard tally to 3 very large bunches.  I’m quite amused by this.  I think a beet-themed lasagne is in our future, with silverbeet, rainbow chard, beetroot and beet leaves all contributing to the giant beet-fest.  Ricotta for the other layers, I think.

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Andrew then gravitated to the Wild Dog Produce to top up our supply of garlic and potatoes.  Definitely a good call, especially as far as the garlic goes, because it doesn’t seem to keep very well in this weather, and I use a lot of it.  He’s not sure which potato he got, but it was the low GI one, which I suspect is the one whose name sounds a bit like Almaviva but isn’t.  I got greetings from John, too.

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Eggs were also bought, but I forgot to photograph them.  So you get another photo of purple cauliflower and fractal broccoli instead, because that’s what life is all about.

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And that was the haul for this week.  Rather more modest than when I go there, possibly because Andrew has more self-control than me, or possibly just because his level of fascination with vegetables isn’t quite as intense as mine.

But at least we have enough chard.

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One year ago: Recipe: Overnight Rice Pudding for a Cold Winter’s Morning
Two years ago: Recipe: Basics that Aren’t – Scones
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