It’s springtime 2014 in the market, and time to look out for the ingredients that go to make up la jardinière, a mixture of fresh and tasty new veg to be served with roast meat. You can expect to pay €4.90 a kilo for the first of the new peas. A bunch of new carrots shouldn’t cost your more than €1.80, and don’t forget the sweet small turnips – navets (right) – at €1.50 the bouquet. You’ll have to wait a little longer for the first of the grelots, tiny new onions that take their name from the small bells on a horse’s bridle. The white ones are usually best, and can cost up to €6 per kilo.
Mrs Piggy thinks that buying a whole salade which then has to be washed and drained is a waste of good troughing time, so I always spend a euro or two assembling a bespoke bag of delicious, grit-free leaves from Dominique’s stall at the Marché Forville. Try the mesclun (from the niçois word mesclumo – a mixture), which has a slightly bitter taste and in its purest state should contain wild and cultivated chicory, lamb’s lettuce and dandelion, though it can contain rocket, groundsel, chervil, salsify and oak leaf lettuce.
Mr Piggy goes to market looking for spring vegetables
- Riviera Reporter