My worship-at-its-feet adoration for Berlin is manifold. Some of the reasons I’m in love are confounding and even mythic in proportion: how a pervasive, post-Apocalyptic history saturates its streets; how just this Thursday afternoon I stumbled upon the inexplicable convergence of nearly-100 armed, hulking police in full riot gear; how the public-health warnings never hit Berlin, so that chain-smoking remains de rigueur; and how it’s unusual to make evening plans that start before midnight. (Because of Berlin’s hyper-Northerly latitude, the sun rises as early as 4:30am and sets as late as 9:30pm, making the days very…long.) However, most of my German pleasures are more quotidian in nature: how girls in short skirts eat a chocolate ice-cream cone with one hand, hold a cigarette in the other, and listen to music on ear phones—all while riding a beat-up bicycle at top-speeds down a heavily-trafficked street; or how the overwhelming majority of Berlin’s men are big and tall and strong boys who take obvious pleasure in their physical power and enjoy showing off their bodies. For me, however, what I love more than anything is how kick-ass farmers’ markets abound! Especially the Saturday market only two blocks away from my apartment.
There is integrity in all useful work, but small-plot organic farmers, artisanal cheese mongers, jam makers, not to mention bread bakers have a special place in my heart. I want to crawl into a hot barn with all of them and have an all-weekend-long party. Their contributions to the culture of sustainable, holistic food production are magical love letters they’re penning for the world.
My gorgeous produce cache included crucifers (broccoli), peppers (red bell) and roots (carrots), as well as seasonal fruit faves (tomatoes, strawberries, and apples). I am plastics-averse and as much as possible avoid the purchase of anything wrapped in it. Petroleum-based food packaging? No, thank you. When I first landed in Germany, my new friend schooled me on an old-fashioned, very-effective produce-storage method. Just like you, I grew up thinking that plastic bags kept my cauliflower and kiwis fresh. This is true, but so does a cotton kitchen-towel. Wrap-up those bad-boys and stay green, y’all.
Ok, so who went to the farmers’ market this weekend, too? What did you get and why is it awesome?