Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Arab Market: Seeds and Spuds, Candy and Chaos.
Arab market, somewhere east of Nazareth. Big sheet metal warehouse, entirely open, an informal dirt parking lot on one side, and a chaos of trucks, crates, and shouting over a floor of drops and discards. Produce you can tell just came out of the field... spuds still covered in dirt, cabbage with the rough, eaten outer leaves we never see because, ie, some Jamaican migrant worker at the Smalowski farm in Hadley, Mass has cut them off with a billhook before the shrinkwrap. Clear plastic bags of seeds... sunflower, fried fava beans, fresh fava beans, pumpkin seeds, squash seeds, peanuts, almonds, pecans, salted, unsalted... sold by the scoop and the kilo, a nice change from the sealed 1.75 oz packages hanging by the cash register. And the fish monger in a keffiyeh and leather jacket who graciously allowed me to take his picture. Looked like mostly farmed tilapia, but the pink bags by his left hand are shrimp on ice, a leeway allowed by Halal dietary laws but not Kashrut.