On Sunday mornings I like to go out for coffee and then walk up to the organic market on Boulevard Raspail. It’s a beautiful place, and I like walking up and down the aisle even if I’m not going to buy anything. There is certainly a pastoral fantasy of going to the market, filling up a basket with just harvested produce, and coming home to prepare a beautiful meal or picnicking in a park, but the reality is that I have lunch and dinner plans almost every day this week. The last thing I want is to throw away food. Particularly food from the Raspail market, which can be jaw-droppingly expensive.
There are gorgeous cheeses, intimidating meats, and loads of vegetables, mostly robust and fresh, sometimes tired and limp, usually from France but sometimes from Spain or further afield, but all organic, or bio, short for biologique. A rabbit would be happy here, hopping among the expansive heads of lettuce and nibbling radishes. For my part I gravitate toward the strawberries and fresh chevre.
But what really gets me out of bed on a Sunday morning in Paris is the guy frying up potato-onion galettes at the market entrance. Wait, that came out wrong: It’s the galettes, not the man frying them. Better than any hashbrown I’ve ever had, cooked on a well-seasoned cast iron griddle and passed over, piping hot, in a little paper sack with a single, insufficient napkin, this is a perfect food.
Strolling home from the market today, I dropped my galette. I stood stunned, staring at the sidewalk, mourning the loss of those last few bites and wondering how I could have been so careless. I picked it up with the napkin and sadly threw it in the trash.
Next week, I thought, I’ll get two just in case.