Wednesdays in the French city of Tours, are market days. When we found this out we made a special trip to the area just to see what we would find. We were not disappointed! As you know, the French take their food very seriously. The selection and variety of fruits and vegetables was incredible. I enjoyed stepping back and watching the people choose their produce. Each item that was picked up was thoroughly inspected, squeezed and smelled before being allowed into their baskets. This was not your quick stop supermarket (although those exist too). And how about those small, hand written chalk board signs! Don't they just make the whole experience that much more stylish and French. It's all in the details... I love how this display of cepes mushrooms included some moss, leaves and pine cones from the forest floor. As you can see, depending on the size and quality of the mushrooms they demanded different prices - not cheap at $25-30 a kilogram. We bought some black trumpet mushrooms from the vendor below. I had worked with these mushrooms before back in Vancouver when I worked at a restaurant called Pastis. Later that night we made them into amuse bouche. I simply sauteed the mushrooms with some shallots and lots of butter and served them on crostini. Topped with a little chiffonade of sage, they were earthy and sweet, the delicious start to a meal.
Truly, a great experience and probably one of my favorite days in France!