The first stop on my exploratory tour of Bologna was its famous food market. Made up of individual small shops tucked into a labyrinth of medieval lanes, this area was an endless source of fascination for me. I was like a kid in a candy store and during the course of my stay in Bologna I returned to these streets over and over again. Within in minutes I wished that I was staying in an apartment so that I could go crazy shopping and get in the kitchen and cook.
The produce stands were full of the freshest spring vegetables, a few that we don’t often see at home. I don’t think you can see the whole sign up in the tomato for photo but it said “Non toccare, don’t touch, we cut your hand”. I guess they were serious! I know enough not to touch the produce in most Italian vegetable markets, as you should tell the vendor what you’d like.
Breathtaking displays of flowers. I should have bought a bunch for my room.
Bologna is famous for its handmade pastas, especially tortellini and tortelloni and you can find them in many of the shops around town. Why bother making your own when you can get them at the market?
There were all sorts of seafood for sale and I’ll admit that I didn’t recognize about half of them.
And don’t forget the meat. I spied huge roasts and gorgeous chops and spiedini (skewered meat), plump sausages and tiny guinea fowl. Don’t even get me started on all the salumi!
There’s more to come…