meta name="p:domain_verify" content="8b08da541f8a920e6 Marie Z Johnston: Marché President Wilson - Wednesdays and Saturdays with Joel Thibault

Monday, January 30, 2012

Marché President Wilson - Wednesdays and Saturdays with Joel Thibault

There are some markets I visit but rarely shop from, some markets I go to because they're convenient (just up - or down - the street from where we live) and then there are those I'm willing to get on the metro for (with my cart no less)The Marché President Wilson is just  one of those markets.

Candy stripe beets are a rare and welcome sight in French markets
Located by the Palais de Tokyo Museum it is just the place to go when the weather is fine and I'm looking for something unusual or special (those impossible to find raw beets for instance).  This market is known for quality, so it's not surprising to see live shrimp, or a wide assortment of fresh herbs not usually found at your local green grocer.

Live Atlantic shrimp
Because the market's location is in the middle of the avenue, it is long and narrow with a  double row of stands centered on the tree lined 'island' it calls (for a few hours) home. Sometimes it's a challenge to keep moving forward when people stack up in front of their favorite stand. I don't mind though, it gives me a chance to see what all the fuss is about.

Joel Thiebault - All Heirloom, all the time!
One of my favorite stops is Joel Thiebault's produce stand. Whichever vegetable is the season's star will be featured in abundance, at it's peak of perfection... every week there is something new to discover... and Joel himself is more than happy to explain what the varietal is, how and just how long you can store it, and best of all: interesting and different ways of preparing the vegetable in question.  Who knew (I sure didn't) that trimming the roots and greens off of celery root significantly cuts the storage life and makes them dry out?  For amateurs of Celeri Remoulade or purée of celery root (such as myself) this was big news. 
The way Celery Root should look at the store
Every market has an interesting selection of fresh seafood year round, but nothing like what can be found here (remember the live shrimp?) Live lobster and crab, beautiful scallops in the shell, fresh squid (as opposed to those thawed numbers displayed in front of a 'disk' of their frozen brethren) razor calms and (one of my favorites since visiting Puglia) : sea urchin.
There is nothing that compares with fresh sea urchin tossed in linguine & olive oil!
Scallops in their natural state, fresh and so delicious

Another thing I really look forward to is the stand where they make this herbed flat bread.  (There are two stands.. it's the 2nd one I make a bee line for.  Why?  The bread is cooked to order, not reheated) sometimes I ask for herbs and cheese.  Either way, this snack is so delicious it would really be a shame if you missed it.

You will also find a very nice man selling sea salt from the Brittany coast (now that's a nice gift to bring home to foodie friends) I like to get the large grains because I can use them in my salt grinder.

Another cool thing about this market is that you can pop into the Palais de Tokyo  (They are closed for remodel until April 2012) or the Musée d'Art Moderne , or have a nice refreshing drink (or lunch in the sunnier months) on the terrace between the two museums. Either way, it's a nice outing.

A bientot!

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Catt White said...

Wonderful post on a wonderful market - really enjoyed visiting it with you on our tour, just wish I'd bought more. Or that I was back in Paris making my list for Wednesday.

Marie Z said...

Wish we were knocking around Paris too Catt - the weather has warmed a bit, making it much nicer to just stroll.