Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Polish Food Series "Local Fruits & Vegetables"

110. Our travels in the country of Poland took us from the capital city of Warsaw to the very small rural town of Zamość. We spent several days walking the local streets and alleyways in both towns. Along our travels we came across a variety of street vendors selling the local and seasonal favorites of the Poles. So much of what we saw in the markets is accessible in the USA but we were enchanted by the large variety of mushrooms, walnuts and seeds and wild fruits.
Like these wild strawberries. They were so sweet but I have never seen this variety.
The vendors were pleasant and eager to please but spoke very little English. The Poles eat multi-grain breads and their diets consist of fresh vegetables daily.
Mushrooms are also a staple in a Polish kitchen found in soups and sauces. Our dear friend, who is a native of Poland, told us his favorite thing to do is pack a lunch, take a blanket and go out into the forest for the day. Once you find your picnic spot you place the blanket down and then go and find mushrooms. You then bring them back to your picnic spot and incorporate them with your lunch. This is one activity his family is very fond of.
The golden mushroom is
regional to this part of Europe and they are referred to as "Polish Gold".

In Zamość, the vendors were very different. This area has very hungry and needy people who will do anything to make a few "zlotys".
This flea market was filled with mostly locals bringing in produce from their own garden rather than the distributors.
I wanted so badly to buy up bags and bags of fruit to take home but it was not feasible.
These blue plums reminded me of
childhood. My mother would talk about them and how her mother made fantastic
desserts with them. We also had a blue plum tree in our yard.
The market was very old and the pavement was original stones laid many, many years ago. The town of Zamość actually dates back to 1580 and was unspoiled during WWII.
This was freshly picked Gooseberries!!
How very much I wanted to purchase what I saw.
This last vendor we saw brought tears to my eyes. It was obvious she had picked these items that very day. She sat patiently waiting to sell her produce.

"To find the universal elements enough;
to find the air and the water exhilarating;
to be refreshed by a morning walk or an evening saunter... to be thrilled by the stars at night; to be elated over a bird's nest or a wildflower in spring - these are some of the rewards of the simple life."
~John Burroughs


NM said...

Wow, what a wonderful exploration of Poland. Your photographs are stunning. I have always wanted to visit Poland and for the last few years have taught a unit on the history of Poland to my Religious Education students in High School.

It was so kind of you to come and visit my blog and thanks for signing up to follow. I am a new follower of yours too and can't wait to go back and read your previous posts.
Best wishes, NM.

Esther said...

I am thoroughly enjoying your "Polish Food Series." A book in the making, perhaps? I look forward to reading your blog and take pleasure in the creative flair of my sis. Your writings and photos just draw me in!

beedeebabee♥ said...

Lilly, I just loved this little tour. Everything looks so fresh and delicious. What you wrote at the end brought tears to my eyes also. Hugs, Paulette


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