Sunday, December 23, 2012

To Market, To Market

We rented a cabana with a kitchen because we wanted to cook on vacation. (Yes, that's what happens when you vacation with a chef.)

But in order to cook, one needs to get the necessary ingredient. No Jewel. No Whole Foods. No Trader Joe's.  No. Here in Placencia we have a variety of choices.

First there are the produce stands.  These, we found, are the best bet for fresh produce.  A quarter mile away there a stand that opens early in the morning til evening.  And another quarter mile down the road, an even better stand, that operates out of a truck, with even longer hours.

Now the grocery stores do have some produce, but not as much or as good as the open air markets.  The grocery stores are small and poorly lit. And, to tell you the truth, a challenge for a chef on a mission.

It's taken a while, but we've found six within a two mile walk. (Yes, we walk miles a day. No need for a health club here!)

Wallens, nearby with a half-way decent selection, exhibits some of the charm of the place, as evidenced by the signage.

Some things are hard to find--Dijon mustard for one, and thus the vinagrette suffered. Butter.  We found it, but it's expensive!  Yogurt. A search of all six stores until we found some plan yogurt, produced in Belize.

And that was an excellent accompaniment to the granola I made with local honey with floral and tropical flavors. The Chef pronounced it nearly foodgasmic.

Happy discoveries come from market trips. Like these tiny bananas, which surprise in delight. It feels like a banana but tastes like an apple. This is a hybrid being developed here in Belize but not yet exported. Apple bananas, the locals call them.

But now it's time for dinner, so it's either choose a local restaurant, or a trip to the markets.  Hmm. Which shall we do?


  1. i don't see a photo of the apple banana from BELIZE which is what we're trying to grow here! I hope i ordered the right tree!!! i can't seem to buy one here in the states in either the ASIAN markets or Mexican! all i ever see are the BURRO (WHICH IT LOOKS LIKE!!) and the manzano!! I am asian so i know which asian markets to go to! I LOVE the belize apple bananas because when a little unripe they are SWEET SOUR like a granny apple. I do not like overly sweet apples. are the apple bananas from Hawaii the same variety as the ones from Belize? I wonder?? or do those look more like the little manzano bananas? The photos at OHANAS apple bananas, the top photo of the green ones look like the flat angular style but the ripe ones look like the manzano?

  2. Seemsbthe same as a paw paw from north America. I think pae paws are an ancient hybrid of bananas and apples. They were known as North American bananas and their seeds resemble wild banana seeds.