I passed by a handsome bunch of lucinato kale last weekend that I would have liked to remember. Its leaves were adorned with these purply, smooth embossments in the form of little squares. But people were busy shopping and picking their produce, so I chose not to get in the way.
When I got home, however, I went through my pictures of vegetables. Legume by legume, leaf by leaf, I flipped through my photos and smiled as I remembered the moments in which they were taken. Here are a few.
I saw these beets in the Key Food on Parsons Boulevard in Flushing, Queens one fall afternoon a few years back. There was holiday music in the store very early in the season, and I was singing along to the carols while searching for something gluten free to eat for lunch. I admired the fuzzy part on the top of the beet, so I stopped to take a picture.
A few years back, I visited a hydroponic tomato greenhouse in Iceland, an hour east of Reykjavik. Fridheimar is powered by geothermal energy and produces 370 tons of tomatoes each year — over 15% of Iceland’s annual tomato market. The farm was one of many educational and unique excursions on our trip hosted by GeoCamp. Most days were spent climbing mountains, hills, volcanoes, glaciers, any structure with an incline.
Sadly, I didn’t sample the tomatoes when we visited. I just don’t like them raw.
These shallots were piled up on one another at Westchester Greenhouse last summer, the farm stand near our house. The stand was the one destination that we could enjoy safely through some of the worst days of the pandemic, as it is mostly outdoors. I can’t resist taking pictures of these bins in which the vegetables are all smooshed together. And the purple – green – tan color scale of shallots is pleasing.
Avocado (Not a Vegetable)
I unsuspectingly clicked on “Blogger” in my Gmail the other day and was surprised to find a blog I had mostly forgotten about, And Then I Had to Wonder. I started it in 2006, and it was kind of just like this one–about some small things. Snarkily, however, I took the name from the line that Carrie Bradshaw uttered each time she wrote at the end of an episode.
My second post on And Then was about someone who worked at Associated in my neighborhood who would help me select avocados. He’d point and say “today” or “tomorrow,” and he never once was wrong.
Anyway, this avocado above is from a decade later, and I picked it myself. It didn’t have a single bruise on it, so I took its picture on my Put a bird on it plate.
I remember being struck by the prominent stems when I passed by this bin of elephant garlic in a market in Casablanca. My friend and I had taken a car ride from Marrakesh earlier that morning with a Dutch ex-dentist named “Peter Drives You Everywhere.” We made the drive to Casablanca to meet a woman who ran a gluten free cooking school for Celiacs. Before we went to her house, her friend met us in the city, and we shopped for the ingredients at this outdoor market.
Mixed Vegetables and Fruits
In 2018, I took the most round-about way to Ljubjlana, Slovenia to save money. I flew to London, and then to Budapest, then took a train to Zagreb, and then another train to Ljubjlana. Then I flew to London, and then from London flew home to New York. All so I could use frequent flyer miles. I got to stay a night or two in each location, but there was a minor occasion when the train from Budapest to Zagreb was evacuated in a field.
With help from a stranger, I found my way to Zagreb. I splurged on the Esplanade, an old-word hotel located next to the train station, that once housed the passengers of the old Orient Express in 1925. In the morning before my train to Slovenia, I snapped this photo and promptly dolled it up with a garish filter for my Instagram. My account is since deleted, but my over-saturated photos from 2018 serve as its reminder.
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Do you take photos of vegetables in everyday life or on your travels? Do tell!