Scoring at the Cazals market

Plan A for this morning: Ride our bikes over the hilly, 17-kilometre route from Daglan to Cazals, via Campagnac and then Marminiac, and enjoy the Cazals weekly market. Not-so-surprising variable factor: We now interrupt Plan A, to bring you a gentle rain that begins falling, just as we’re ready to execute Plan A and leave the house. Let us now move to Plan B for this morning: Drive my car to Cazals, and enjoy its weekly market.


Despite the cool weather (somewhere around 16 Celsius), the Cazals market was packed (with people) and well stocked (with seasonal fruit and vegetables). And my wife Jan and I did manage to score some tasty stuff.

First, here’s an overview of the market itself, which takes up the entire main square in the village:

June 23, and most people are still wearing jackets or sweaters.

June 23, and most people are still wearing jackets or sweaters.

A lot of local produce is now becoming available, and it’s looking pretty good. (Not as water-logged as you might have expected.) In fact, there is so much available that we couldn’t buy everything that looked worth buying. So I’ll start this short photo essay with some items we did not buy, like these red-skinned new potatoes:

Quite a pile of new potatoes.

Quite a pile of new potatoes.

Cherries are now readily available, and the few that I’ve tasted are delicious. But for one reason or another, we didn’t buy any of these cherries (cerises) from the Lot (the département just south of the Dordogne):

Cherries are now fully into season here.

Cherries are now fully into season here.

As always, markets have prepared foods as well as fresh ingredients. I thought this paella in the Cazals market looked especially good, given all the prawns that were arranged on the top. But again, we didn’t buy any, because we had already planned lunch for today (Jan’s chicken with spinach and coriander leaves in a coconut-milk curry sauce). Still, the paella looks well constructed and tasty:

A good number of prawns are decorating this paella.

A good number of prawns are decorating this paella.

Switching now to things we did buy, here’s a group of girolle mushrooms (you might know them as chanterelles) that looked tempting as well as inexpensive. So we bought a basket of them:

Just 4€ for a basket of these beautiful girolles.

Just 4€ for a basket of these beautiful girolles.

And then, wonder of wonder, we found these fraises des bois, or strawberries of the woods, or simply: wild strawberries. Immediately I thought of the fragoline di bosco that I loved when we were in Tuscany, and I knew that we had to buy some. So of course, we did. Now you’ll notice one thing about them — their incredibly small size. To put them into perspective, I’m showing them with the teaspoon that came with a coffee we ordered from a nearby café:

Fresh from the woods -- fraises des bois.

Fresh from the woods — fraises des bois.

There’s another key point about these wild strawberries: They really don’t last long. In fact, when I tasted one in the market, it was already a bit soft. So we had them today as dessert, after lunch, with heavy cream. Delicious!

As for the girolles, Jan is planning to sauté them tomorrow for lunch, and serve them with some slices of enchaud de porc that we bought on our return to Daglan, at the wonderful Fabrice le Chef boutique. (You’ll remember that confit de canard is duck that’s been slow-cooked in duck fat; well, enchaud is pork that’s also slow-cooked in fat, usually with a nice hint of garlic. It’s quite yummy.) More to come on all that, later.

For now, I’ll just close with a public service message. To wit:

Public service message: If you have friends or relatives in the Netherlands, and have been worried because you’ve been unable to reach them, I have good news. They are just fine. They are at the Cazals market. You’re welcome.

This entry was posted in Bicycling in the Dordogne, French food, Life in southwest France, Markets in France, Weather in the Dordogne and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Scoring at the Cazals market

  1. says:

    Why the cheap crack about the Dutch? They did, after all, arrive here in the sixties, before everyone else started buying everything up — and surely they have as much right to shop on Cazals market as the Canadians and the Scots? They probably also get on with their lives without recording every burp and fart in mind-numbing fashion on internet.

  2. loren24250 says:

    Ouch! Sorry if it came across as a “cheap crack” — it was simply meant to be amusing, because there were so many Dutch people in the market (based simply on what we were hearing). Had we heard as many American accents, I could have made the same comment about “all the Americans” at the Cazals market, without any negative meaning at all. And if you do find Radio Free Daglan “mind-numbing,” there’s a simple solution. Don’t read it.

  3. Janster says:

    As an avid reader of RFD, I was shocked to read the comment about the content of the reports. I am happy to advise readers far and wide that, having done a search for the two words noted by the commentator, NEITHER appears in a report on RFD.

  4. Keithster says:

    Is there a stall that sells a sense of humour?

  5. Norman D says:

    Wow bad pannenkoek this morning? I was pretty sure the Canadians and the Scots showed up in 1944?

  6. Lesley says:

    I thought it amusing and even mentioned it to HimIndoors. We often note that caravans/motorhomes often have Dutch registration numbers on them and are usally the first to appear in the year. Other Europeans are, in some ways, lucky that they don’t have to cross the Channel (or go under it) to get to a lovely holiday.

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