Ciao Readers! (and Happy Halloween!) (and Happy Birthday Henry!)
Wow – I just got back from a trip across town to Mercato Central (the central market) – wow! I can’t believe we’ve been here almost 3 months and I just “discovered” this (well-known) gem!
So here’s the scoop – in my effort to not be a tourist in my adopted home, I have been going to Sant’ Ambrogio market (which I have blogged about). It is the “real” market for locals – and don’t get me wrong, it’s great and where we get most of our fruits and vegetables. The Mercato Centrale, from what I had read, is where the tourists go (it’s right by the big outdoor leather market in the center of town) – so up until today I avoided it like the plaque. Big mistake! While some of the food is obviously geared towards tourists (fancy bags of multi-colored pastas at equally fancy prices), the market is a foodie dream and has lots of “normal” amazing food on offer. (And, compared to the usual “tourists,” the venders thought my Italian was “benissimo.”)
I actually went in search of yet another weird ingredient to replicate comfort foods (dried cranberries [for granola], which I found in the dried fruit stall pictured), but ended up discovering an entire new food-shopping haven (as an aside – I often write several posts on days when inspiration hits me – I wrote this one before I read the articles about culture shock – no more wild goose chases for now!). Not only are there all of the beautiful prepared foods pictured below, there are numerous fresh-looking meat and fish stalls. I had kinda given up hope finding any foodie markets as cool as the ones in Bologna, until today! YAY!