Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Travel Tuesday :: I ❤︎ Markets

One of the best parts of arriving in a new place is exploring the local markets. Because I get really excited about all the new and interesting produce options, checking out the markets is usually one of my top priorities on my first day exploring.

Yeosu had some awesome markets that had a combination of produce, meats, and small restaurants/food stalls. Open air markets are usually a good indicator that there is a strong local farm scene. For example, my "fruit ajjuma" (the old lady I bought my fruit from), only grew some of her produce and the rese, based on the season was outsourced to farms outside the city or in other areas in Korea (I noticed nothing imported). However, my "vegetable ajjuma" grew all her carrots, peppers, cucumbers, and different lettuces in her small city garden.                                                                                      So far, I think my favorite market has to be the one in Hoi An, Vietnam. The Central Market is down by the riverfront and has, what I can only describe as "epic amounts of interesting stuff." Some of the produce I had never seen before, which of course prompted me to buy! There are so many different types of fruits and vegetables out there that we aren't exposed to in North America; and if we are, it likely isn't nearly as fresh. If you've ever seen an heirloom tomato, you're familiar with the concept of ugly produce. That is how it was intended to be.

I particularly like the Central Market in Hoi An because at this point in my life, I was really missing things like avocados and limes-- rare and/or expensive in Korea. They had so many of both- and my favorite fruit that I can never see to find- dragon fruit. While I was there, I made sure to snag some goodies: a dragon fruit, a few lychee, and a green orange. I usually pick out one really diverse table, so I can ask a lot of questions, potentially buy a few things, and maybe get a good deal.  Also, keeping an eye out for hawkers who are handing out samples is something I do, too.

I realize this might not be the most coherent post, but I've had a long day staring at, and editing a really huge Excel file. Brain = fried!

Do you have any favorite foreign fruits or veggies?

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