On of the issues I noticed when I first arrived was that the fresh produce did not enjoy "after-market care". It starts off fresh in the stalls, but as you purchased various items, they'd be jammed into plastic packets by the vendors, crushed under the other vegetables and groceries in the car and also, once they were unloaded into the store, they were often on the floor of the store room until needed. The previous week's produce would be crammed in the store room fridge so the fresh stuff was pushed onto the shelf in front of it. (Can you picture it? It was quite a picture, ewgh!)
At the market, I ask for extra packets and if I notice a reluctance in the seller, I offer to pay for them. William and I pack the heavy vegetables lik potatoes, onions, carrots and squash in first before loading the tomatoes, cucumber, greens, eggs and fruit.
I had all the fridges cleared out and we now keep the shelves and trays clean on a daily basis as well as defrosting them once a month. To avoid boring you all with a housekeeping post, suffice to say, the three fridges (spread between stores and dining room) are user-friendly and hygenic.
Because I don't like to crush the leafy greens like Chinese cabbage, spinach, lettuce (when we can get it, which is not very often) and egg-plant, tomatoes, imported apples - there's nowt like a Ceres - South African apple - I store most of these in my fridge here at home. Every morning I collect what I need for the day at the Guest House and pack it into my basket.
On Saturday I only needed a few leaves of Chinese cabbage - which we use as a basis for green salad - some egg-plant / aubergines, and a few apples.
Leaving my basket on the floor while I looked for the menu which I'd written out the night before, the cats immediately stalked the "strange objects" inside.
Ambrose and Shadow were initially very suspicious of the strange green "monster" hanging from my basket and went to inspect it. Ambrose tried it for taste while Shadow, ever suspicious of most things, looked on!
Ambrose eventually pulled the cabbage out onto the floor * and then tried to hook the the other things out with his claw
On Saturday evening we were invited to a "Pig on the Spit" at the club. When everyone saw me snapping the crispy meat hanging over the fire, they asked if I'd use the photo at the beginning of my vegetarian cook book! People are always amazed that although I eat no flesh, I have no qualms working with meat, filleting fish and chicken and preparing dishes fit for any carnivores!
Everyone relaxes while the meat sizzles on a special contraption over the fire
Apparently the meat and crackling was delicious! I brought my share home for the askari who guards our house at night
Hope you're all having a wonderful week.
Note: * No, I didn't use the same cabbage leaves for the salad...