Paris Notebook


Eating Local in Paris

People ask if my eating habits have changed since moving to France, assuming that Americans live off processed junk and shop in giant supermarkets.  Thankfully my upbringing was nothing like that and not all that different from how I eat in France.

My mother worked full time, but managed to make a home-cooked dinner for four kids every night.  We had a milk man who left fresh milk and eggs on our porch and a butcher named Tony who wrapped my mom’s packages in brown paper, tied up with string.  My parents weren’t foodies, but for some reason we never bought meat from the supermarket, only from the butcher. I remember one night my father asking with suspicion if my mom had bought that night’s steak at the Acme, and you knew from the tone of his voice that this was not something you wanted to do.  Produce came from the Amish farmers market up the street and we had a vegetable garden in the summer.   We had all sorts of tomatoes in that garden and I have never tasted better tomatoes than the one’s my father grew.  I learned that eating fresh local food was better.  No one told me it was better, but it certainly tasted better.

There’s a myth that everyone in France shops at outdoor markets or their neighbourhood butcher, cheesemonger and baker. Sadly this isn’t always the case. While many still shop at family run shops, more and more people are opting for the ease and convenience of hypermarchés or giant supermarkets just like Americans. And even if you do shop at outdoor markets in France, it is by no means a guarantee that what you’re buying is from a local farm and may very well be from some industrial farm in Spain. Click Here To Keep Reading

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Buying Local Vegetables in Paris from Terroirs d’Avenir

Posted in Markets,Products by Phyllis Flick on September 24, 2010
Tags: , , , ,

Alexandre Drouard and Samuel Nahon of Terroirs d’Avenir, are back selling their beautiful local vegetables, this time in front of my favorite neighborhood bakery-Du Pain et Des Ideés, who makes one of the best baguettes in Paris.

Terroirs d’Avenir is a Paris- based company which sources artisan products in France–often local and hard to find.  Normally they sell to Paris’s big-name chefs but from time to time you’ll find them setting up a pop-up market, or marché éphémère as they say in French. Unfortunately it’s difficult to know where and when as they don’t seem to announce anything and have no website. Somehow I have been lucky enough to stumble upon them at the 104, Spring Boutique and now Du Pain et Des Idées.

Last week I bought Jackie Mercier’s incredible tomatoes, gorgeous purple eggplants, green beans, butter beans, peppers, yellow squash, champignon de Paris, wild plums, raspberries and blackberries.  All of them local and many organic.

For now they say they will be at Du Pain et Des Ideés until further notice every Friday from 13H00-18h00 (or I suppose until they run out of produce).  I will try to post back here when the market closes.

Update 27 September: I went to the market again on Friday and bought delicious fresh picked corn on the cob which is a rarity in Paris. It rivaled the corn I used to buy from the Amish farmer’s market back home.  They still had Jacky Mercier’s tomatoes as well.

Terroir d’Avenir at Du Pain et Des Idées
34 rue Yves Toudic
Paris 10th
Metro: Republique or Jacques Bonsergent