notes from berlin: navigating farmers’ markets
Exploring and shopping a haven for food and life.
Published Mar 16, 2015 4:00 PM
WHEN LIVING IN A BIG CITY LIKE BERLIN–no matter how much you might be in love with the place you call home–from time to time one can feel a bit overwhelmed by all the hustle and bustle. What I like to do then is go to the farmers’ market. There’s something so reassuring in knowing that once or twice a week, there it is: a haven for every lover of food, and thus, life.
A FEAST FOR THE EYES when strolling around the many market stalls, there’s no other way than to slow down while looking out for what’s in season, touching and smelling the fresh produce, maybe discovering something new. The excitement that comes from whether or not the first rhubarb of the season will be already available, then dreaming about whether to first make a classic galette or jam. And to then enjoy every moment of it, already having something to look forward to when the next season arrives. Oh the memories of having bought too many baskets of raspberries on one of these last summer days, best eaten still warm from the sunshine! But also if you don’t schedule all of your grocery shopping for the weekly market, it’s a wonderful thing to create something like a ritual: May it be the fresh Friday flowers to celebrate the beginning of spending some well-deserved time with friends and family or your favorite sourdough bread for a long and late breakfast on the weekend.
MEETING THE MAKERS
Furthermore, almost every week, I find myself talking to strangers, already looking forward to chatting with them without even knowing their name. The farmers and producers are the ones who know best about how to prepare the food which was grown from their own hands: The couple who, after years of finally going on their first real vacation, comes back days earlier, because they missed working on the field. The old woman with her wrinkled hands who wants to show me how to prevent a cold in the midst of winter by making a soup of black salsify. The man with his eyes lighting up while handing me a glass of almond milk, remembering his childhood in Sicily where everyone has always been drinking this cold and refreshing liquid. “Already well before the vegan food craze“, he chuckles. Listening to these stories, there’s so much to be shared, so much more to be told–and thus getting inspired again.
Or the man with his eyes lighting up while handing me a glass of almond milk, remembering his childhood in Sicily where everyone has always been drinking this cold and refreshing liquid, even turning it into a thicker spread to enjoy for breakfast. „Already well before the vegan food craze“, he chuckles. Listening to these stories, there’s so much to be shared, so much more to be told – and thus getting inspired again.
Besides what might be Berlin’s most
beautiful market hall with its high ceilings
and string lights hanging from them,
Markthalle Neun is also home to the city’s most exciting food events like Street Food Thursday or The Breakfast Market. The Turkish Market at Maybachufer is an experience in itself with its variety of specialties and view onto the canal. Not to forget the small neighborhood markets
taking place every Saturday, a meeting place inhabiting the unique spirit of each part of the city.