Sunday morning in Marcillac

 

At the end of February I had the privilege of showing one of my nephew’s and his wife around my little corner of France. They braved the coldest month of the year and gave me a great excuse to show them round and to revisit some places I hadn’t seen for a while.

Marcillac market on Sunday mornings is very busy in the summer months, but on a bright cold morning in February it is still vibrant but calmer and it’s much easier to park!

The produce on sale include local specialities: farçous, tripoux, tête de veau. Some greek treats including keftedhes and baklava. A fabulous cheese stall supplied direct from the producers in the mountains of Cantal (and I have been here long enough to be pretty blazé about local cheeses, so trust me when I say they’re good!) and the local Marcillac wine also direct from the producer, a stall that can get very lively as the tastings get underway.

 

 

Just down the road towards Rodez, is the village of Salles la Source. There is a lovely nature trail, a museum of local crafts but we visited the waterfall. One of the advantages of the wet winter is that the “cascade” is at its most dramatic. A truly magical place.

To Market, to Market

People arriving from the UK are always keen to visit a French market while they’re here, even people from other parts of France want to investigate the differences to their local markets.

The “go to” market around here is the Thursday morning market in Villefranche de Rouergue.
http://www.villefranche.com/fr/gastronomie-terroir/marches-terroir.php and it certainly is a magnificent market, picturesquely situated in a bastide town and maintaining a core of genuine local producers, but…..

For me real life is reflected more genuinely in the little local markets, why? Well let me see:

Let’s start with the basics, it’s easier to park! OK maybe not the best reason, what else? Well all markets will have several fruit and veg stalls, (including little local producers and at least one larger “professional” green grocer), a butcher, and a cheese stall. So there really is no need to waste, time and petrol going elsewhere. Plus a smaller market you use regularly allows you to develop a rapport with stallholders, which makes it a more pleasant experience and means that they are able to advise you based on your habitual purchases and to source things you might request.

My personal favourites locally are;
Montbazens on Wednesday mornings, which has 4 local veg producers, a lady selling pork products from her own local farm, two fruit and veg stalls, a local chicken producer, 2 cheese stalls, a fish stall, two butchers and a horse butcher. You can even buy aligot or paella for your lunch. Can’t see that you need much more!

Cransac is interesting, blink and you miss it, it’s Saturday 1 to 3! Even smaller than Montbazens, but still has local producers of, fruit, veg and honey, (including a local organic producer) and butchers and bakers if not a candlestick maker!

Cransac marketP1020842 P1020844 P1020847 P1020849
So support your local market and local producers and save some time in the car and money on petrol, what’s not to like?