Friday, October 28, 2011

Vegetable Envy

Since it's a cold, blustery fall day, a hearty spinach, feta and potato gratin sounds really good to me. One of the ingredients is shallots.

Here's what you get in Virginia for $2.99--three rather small shallots, which will probably be enough for one, maybe two dishes.

In France, one of these red bags filled with shallots--the yellow one is onions--is 10 Euros, about $14! That works out to 50 Eurocents a kilo although apparently in stores they're more like 5 Euros a kilo. My sisters-in-law have an amazing food network (and it's real, not a TV show). They each find the best deal on wonderful local produce, buying extra for friends and family in other regions. Then they trade!
It's all about the food. That's why I'm so comfortable in Europe.

Here's a sample of the goodies in my other sister-in-law's garage--all these artichokes were only 1 Euro at the co-op, because they weren't perfect! Here they would be considered just fine, to the tune of $2.89.


  1. I hear you sister! I go through reverse sticker shop on produce when I go from Alaska to Arizona especially if I cross the border to Mexico and get a kilo of key limes for a buck and compare to what they are here. I've even brought some back and they lasted longer than our Alaskan store limes. and it used to be that farm stands meant cheaper, now they just mean better which I guess is still a good thing.
    xoxo Kim
    PS, Thanks for the b-day greetings too!

  2. Our local Asian grocer's produce used to last really long too (and it was cheap) but in the past year it's gotten the same as everywhere else :-(
    Yay for farm stands!
    Thanks for visiting!

  3. I laugh, thinking of my vexation shopping here on this ding dong island in southeast alaska where vegetable envy is darn near constant with me! Thanks for there drool-producing photos, something to dream about! love, sus

  4. Sus, Alaska food shopping sounds like Hawaii's--we have to give something up for gorgeous scenery and you certainly have that where you are!

  5. Even here in Wisconsin, it can be difficult and expensive to get good veggies grown in the US. So much, even the organic in-season veggies, are from Mexico or Canada. I was in Germany earlier this year, while my daughter was there for over 5 months for school, and we were both struck by the abundance of delicious, affordable veggies available there.