Tag Archives: Market

Seasonal Fruits

What-we-got-from-marketIt is becoming hard to find good oranges.  The apples are no longer looking up to very much.  The spring fruit has not really got going yet.   It is that difficult time when the autumn and winter fruit is finishing and we are waiting for the spring fruit. There are strawberries but in another month or so they will be so much better, right now they do not taste of much.  We have seen melon and watermelon but these are imported, expensive and probably not that good.  There are local green almonds but neither of us are fans.

At least there are good local bananas and kiwifruit.

There are workmen across the road, building a new house.  Next door to them has a plum tree.  The fruits are tiny, green and probably very acid.  The builders are helping themselves, the Turks seem to really like unripe plums.   Our wild-asparagusneighbours have not as yet noticed the scrumping.

This weekend we managed to find some really nice apples.  The tomatoes are starting to become good enough to eat fresh rather than just fit for cooking with.  More varieties of beans are appearing, the peas remain wonderfully sweet but are finishing.  We are no longer on the limited selection of winter vegetables.

One of the joys of seasonal foods is seeing the first summer courgettes, the first baklapeas and broad beans.  And hopefully soon the first cherries.  We never really know what we’ll find on market until we go, sometimes there are surprises like the first time we found kohlrabi (with full explanations of what it is, how good for you it is and how to cook it, in Turkish), but generally it is very seasonal local produce.

Fresh food in January

One of the things we like best about living in Turkey is the year-round availability of locally produced, straight from the field, fresh fruit and vegetables.  No air miles to concern us – the worst we have to worry about is tractor miles and we do try to favour strictly local produce.  It is also extremely cheap – there were tomatoes on the market today at 2 lira a kilo – they look very good and are almost good enough for salad (we are fussy about our tomato salads).  They are juicy and fine for cooking.  The spinach and the sprouting broccoli are currently at their finest.  We think the cauliflowers might get better again by Wednesday.  There were strawberries on some stalls claiming to be local, but we didn’t try them.  We were more tempted by the lovely blood oranges.

On the market we can also buy very cheap eggs (not had a bad one yet but we go a bit upmarket at 3 lira for 11), locally produced honey, cheese of several kinds, thick yoghurt, olives, herbs and spices, and all manner of dried fruit and vegetables.

We do believe that it’s possible to eat very cheaply here – provided one does not eat a lot of red meat and provided one enjoys cooking.  We do spend quite a lot of time preparing olive oil dishes (which last in the fridge for 3-4 days provided you don’t eat them all up before then).  It is true that red meat is expensive.  We miss affordable lamb, but the dana et is good and the chicken excellent (and so cheap they almost pay you to eat it).