Friday, 11 March 2011

What a Bargain and a Trip to Oxford.

Firstly, I would like to say my thoughts are with all those followers who have family and friends in Japan.  We seem to be getting bad news far too often these days. Yet another natural disaster; they  are  happening worldwide at the moment.

Last week I went to the supermarket to see if I could get some fish, as stocks in the freezer were running low . We are both very fond of all kinds of fish and would happily eat it in preference to meat.   When I got there, I was disappointed to find that there was almost no selection and nothing really of interest.  I was about to walk away, when a couple who had been standing in front of me moved aside, and I saw a whole salmon marked down from £21 to £13. I snapped it up very quickly, as I realised that I could fillet it and cut it into steaks, much cheaper than I could buy them pre-cut.  Salmon steaks here  are now generally around £6 for two!!

On arriving home, I set to work and somehow I must have cut one side of the fish into slightly larger steaks than the other, as I ended up with 15 steaks!!!  We had two the same night and I have frozen the remainder for Nigel to have when I return to France.  It is one meal he finds easy to cook in a hurry and he never has a lot of time when he returns from work in the evening. I was really pleased with myself, as 15 pre-cut steaks would have cost me £45; what a bargain.


 On Monday, Anne and I went to Oxford for the day.  I seldom go there, as I shop locally rather than struggle to a town where parking is very expensive. We went on the bus and as I have a free bus pass, it seemed like a good idea :-).  It was a fantastic trip, especially for me, as Anne knows her way around the town and took me to places I have never seen before.  I took so many photos that I am going to need time to sort them all out and try to remember where they all were!!  What I did think though, was as this post started out about fish, I would show you some of the photos  I took which were connected with food.

These were all taken in the covered market, which is an absolute delight to walk around.  Please note that some of these photos will not enlarge; Google is up to its tricks again!!
I did not buy any fish here, as I did not want to smell fishy going home on the bus!!!

This stand looked so fresh and colourful.

Mmmmmmm no comment!

Anne taking a look at the garden and flower section.

and Anne looking for Nigel's favourite French cheese

Well done Anne, she has found it - Fourme d'Ambert; Nigel was happy.

No, I did not buy any meat either

but I did buy some South African sausages here

Boerewors, which we had for dinner on Monday night with traditional pap (Maize or Mealie Meal) and sous (tomato and onion sauce) it was really yummy and an almost forgotten South African treat.  We ate it with great glee and I forgot to take any photos!

If you want your shoes fixed here, is the traditional cobbler.

We also made a visit to the old sweet shop, where Anne spent a bit of money. I carefully kept my hand in my pocket, thinking of what would happen to the scales if I got carried away here!  To see more on the sweet shop, Anne has some fantastic photos HERE 




Chocolate spoons - yummy

I loved that tin in the centre

Need I say more; whiskey fudge!

and, last but not least, whirly pops!

76 comments:

  1. That was a great deal for all that salmon... funny how so many people are afraid of a whole fish. They aren't that much trouble at all and how I love salmon.

    I did love the food stores in Oxford. They had so many lovely things esp that cheese store. Sadly, so many cheeses were new to me... I didn't know where to begin! SOunds like a great outing, Diane!

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  2. What a bargin you got. I am so lovin' it! You feel so good when you get a good deal don't you? When is dinner?

    I would love to go on your shopping trip to Oxford too. I could get lost in the cheese shop or a coffee shop! My friends from So Africa brought me back a Braai cookbook. They said they had so much of that sausage they are good to come back here and not have it for awhile!

    Have a great weekend Diane!

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  3. OK, cheese is really good, but Chocology? And the Sweet Shop? Good thing calories don't transfer through my monitor! It's nice to have a browsing day with a friend.

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  4. Yes, thoughts and prayers are with Japan all over the world. So much sadness but it is important to do things to stay strong. Having wonderful outings is one way to do that and your pictures show a fabulous day trip! The savings on the fish are great! By coincidence we're having salmon tonight also but it is baked. My sister-in-law provides this fish to us once a year. I'm so happy to get it because I never buy salmon in the stores. It is too expensive here.

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  5. Hi Diane, it is such a tragedy what is going on in Japan. I can't believe how many tragic world events have happened in 2011 and we are only in March.

    I wanted to comment on your lovely blog post as well though. It has been nearly a year since I went to the Covered Market and you have reminded me how great it is. I must get back there soon. So glad you and Anne had such a good time there.

    Thank you so much for you kind comment on my blog. It was a bit of a first for me and I really appreciated your words.

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  6. I had a hard time getting past the "chocology". But the sweet shop drew me on. I haven't seen whirly pops in Many years.
    Good buy on the fish for Nigel. And I'll bet the ZA sausage was truly a treat.
    Will you be leaving soon for France?

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  7. What a great day out and a super market.
    I love to shop at small shops, especially in France, and the market seems like a really good collection of small shops where it is possible to buy something a bit different.
    I sometimes feel overwhelmed in supermarkets. The latest thing I hate about supermarkets, is how difficult it is to avoid the employees with extra large trolleys doing the 'internet shopping'.
    Give me small shops anyday!

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  8. I forgot to add that I am with Nigel Fourme d'Ambert. I also love a really good St Nectaire.
    I'll be back in France in 3 weeks, but only for 3 weeks. You must be excited and very busy getting things together Diane. I'd love to be in your shoes.......

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  9. I have never been to Oxford. The market looks super.
    So many markets in England suffer from the effects of too many out-of-town supermarkets and crippling carparking charges, causing them to wither and die. It's nice to see one that is thriving.

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  10. Just letting you know that I popped in for a visit, Dianne, and that your photos all appeared OK on my PC, and that they were lovely as per usual and so why does my camera not take such super duper piccies!

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  11. Hi Diane - great post and pics - I could imagine the smells as I looked at the images ...

    I also prefer fish to meat but, my goodness, that salmon does seem expensive (I absolutely love salmon and will always have it as a starter, if available, when eating out).

    ... and mieliepap and wors - I know what I'm having for supper tonight ...

    I presume that you'll be returning to France soon?

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  12. lostpastremembered you are right buying a whole fish is not a problem and certainly works out cheaper most of the time. I always debone fish what ever it is, so I have got quite quick at preparing it.
    Yes the Oxford market is fun and it was a lovely day out. We were even lucky with the weather :-) Diane

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  13. Lyndsey the market is excellent, I should go there more often!

    I sometimes make boerevors when we are desparate for the taste but it is so much easier to buy them!! Diane

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  14. Marjie I just refused to take my hand out of my pocket at the sweet shop or Chocology, I knew it would be bad news if I did!! Diane

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  15. Joyful the situation in Japan is very sad but there are so many places in the world having natural disasters at the moment it is scary.

    Every Christmas we have baked whole salmon, we prefer it to turkey :) Diane

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  16. Froggy you deserved all the comments you got for your writing it was excellent.

    Yea, the world disasters are not improving, let us hope this is the last one for a while.

    I loved Oxford market especially as I have not been for ages. Take care Diane x

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  17. Diane hi
    I join my prayer with your own and the world for our Japanese friends.
    The present your ride was the most delicious ride!!!
    Thanks so much for the wonderful photos!!!
    Have a pleasant weekend!
    Greetings

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  18. Gaynor that market is really good and a pleasure to walk around as it is under cover. So much to see, eat and drink :-)

    Hope you have a good trip over to France for three weeks but I am sure that is not nearly long enough for you :(
    Take care Diane

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  19. Jean that Market is really worth taking the time to go to. I have not been for ages and now I realise what I have been missing out on in the UK. Never mind I love the French markets and there is only two weeks left to go :-) Diane

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  20. Vera thanks for the visit. I only have a very cheap camera but I have a good programme on my computer for down loading, resizing etc. which may well make a difference. I don't have a problem with your photos though. Diane

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  21. Graham you are right, I am off to France in two weeks time, it can not come quick enough. I am looking forward to having my own company for a bit! Diane

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  22. Magda the world seems to be having so many natural disasters at the moment!! You have a good weekend also. Diane

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  23. I so love your pictures! I feel like I am right there with you shopping at these wonderful places! I wish I could be! Thanks!

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  24. Prayers and sympathy for all in Japan. It is incredible the natural disasters lately, and so upsetting. Your day in Oxford looks like such fun. Yes, too many town centres in the UK have become ghost towns, or clones with identikit chain stores, that these markets and small businesses should be protected by us using them as much as possible. I'll get off my soapbox now and congratulate you on your wonderful fishy bargain Diane.

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  25. All these disasters are so very sad. Mother Nature seems to be in such turmoil.
    The photos you chose to share are just up my street, I would not mind shopping there.
    As for the fish impressed with your purchase, we also eat a lot of fish, but doubt that comes as a surprise considering our location!
    Have a good weekend.

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  26. How nice it looks. Lovely photos.
    Hugs Stina

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  27. I always love visiting sites with pics of food - this market is obviously a real treasure and especially being under cover and protected from the elements.
    I must search out "Fourme d'Ambert"
    have a lovely week-end xx

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  28. WHAT??!!!
    You treat yourself to a South African meal with the tradition wors, sous, mealy meal and NO PICS??.... Did you have Castle Lager at least to swallow it all down?!!
    And by the way, can you get decent biltong in England?
    My son does his in Australia, but the meat is not the same! The wild game one is tops!
    OK! I finished teasing you!
    Your pics are yummy, what lovely market to walk through even if one doesn't buy much!
    Tou must be starting to think about suitcases, now!!
    Love,
    XXXXXXXXXX
    Keep well

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  29. What a great bargain! I would have grab a few too. Nice place to shop around and just look at those candies. So pretty! Thanks for taking us along the trip. Hope you're enjoying your weekend.
    Kristy

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  30. What an expedition! One lovely shop upon another and they all are photogenic to boot. I love this kind of shopping day. The sausages sound really interesting and your skill with a boning knife is remarkable. Those fillets will be appreciated. Have a wonderful day. Blessings...Mary

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  31. All these shops and displays look so inviting. Even though I don't have a sweet tooth, I wouldn't have been able to resist these little jars and tins of candy. It must be a real delight to shop there. You took really beautiful photos of that place.

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  32. Great set of no less great and varied displays.

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  33. Debbie wish you could come shopping with me, it would be great to meet up :) Diane

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  34. Dolly you ate right there has just been too many natural disasters in the last few months, let us hope this is the end.
    If we did not use supermarkets the little shops would still be around. On the other hand you cannot blame people for saving money and the convenience of shopping in one place!
    The salmon was a brilliant buy, things like that don't happen too often! Diane x

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  35. Stina thanks for the comment. Take care. Diane

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  36. Dianne, I agree an under cover market is much better for all concerned. Hope you track down the cheese :) Diane

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  37. Kristy, glad you enjoyed the trip, it was fun for me especially being with Anne. Wish I could find another salmon like that!! Diane

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  38. Mary it was such a fun day being with Anne. I am lucky my Mum taught me to de-bone fish and poultry at a very young age so I find it pretty simple now. It also makes fish so much more fun to eat :-) Diane

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  39. Olga there were a few flops in my photos but most were OK. It was the tins and the packets that really took my eye in the sweet shop. Diane

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  40. JM it is a lovely market and fun to walk around. Everybody seems so friendly and pleasant. Diane

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  41. What a fantastic market ! I love to visit food markets when I'm abroad. It's a very good way to see how people live !
    Have a nice day
    Hélène

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  42. Thank you, my dear blogfriend.:-)
    Hug Stina

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  43. That salmon was a great bargain! It looks like you had so much fun in Oxford.

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  44. Pam, I wish I could find another couple of salmon like that! Diane

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  45. oh wow...i want to shop there so much!

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  46. Jaz this is one of the nicest english markets I have been to. I was very impressed! Diane

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  47. Nice shopping Diane! I always go for the Devon cream first whenever I am in a covered market like this in England. I tasted it once and I'm hooked for life! Nice Salmon fillets you made. They are the only remaining fish that are good for you nowadays, I think. Thanks for taking us to a shopping spree! Cheers!

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  48. Lucky you! This market carries so many great products! And the Chocology shop looks absolutely amazing!

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  49. michelangelo I am not sure why Devon cream is so much better than other creams but I agree it is superb. Thanks for the comments. Diane

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  50. Jackie thanks for your visit. You are right it really is an excellent market and so many yummy things to buy! Diane

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  51. Such a wondrous display of things to eat.

    Would a fish by any other name still smell as "fishy?"

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  52. Abe it is quite hard walking round that market without spending too much!!
    Would a rose by any other name smell so sweet? LOL. Diane

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  53. lovely photos!
    my son loves salmon!
    happy week,
    Rosa

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  54. Thanks Rosa, we both love salmon but prefer wild to farmed but that is not so easy to come by! Have a good week. Diane

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  55. What a great deal on the salmon! Your little tour of all the shops had me drooling and wishing we had something like that around here!

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  56. What a deal you got with the salmon! It looks great! The market is very impressive and it would be hard to resist all that good cheese, not to mention the chocolate. The produce looks great also, much better than it does here in the stores. Signs are posted explaining the poor quality due to the cold weather where grown. I can hardly wait for fresh grown local veggies! Have a good day, Diane!

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  57. I woukld choose fish over meat too. I grew up in a coastal area in the Philippines so I am very fond of eating fish. Nice bargain you've found. So many selections of foods you've captured. My son would drool over to those whirl pops hehehe. Have a nice day Diane.

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  58. Pam I was really plased with my buy of the salmon, wish I could find another bargain like that! Yes the vegetables there did look very fresh, I was impressed. It seems that weather gets blamed for everthing from trains not running on time to vegetables not looking very good!! Diane

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  59. chubskulit I was thrilled with my buy. I have never seen whirly pops before so it was a whole new experience for me LOL. Diane

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  60. Peggy I will soon be back in France and I just love the markets there. The only shops that may not be handy over there are the sweet and chocolate shop and that is probaly not a bad thing!! Diane

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  61. Un seul mot : "Bon appétit"!
    Merci diane pour ce parcours gastronomique!

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  62. Everything looks so nice..displayed so wonderful..Makes me hungry just looking at the pictures..You sure did great with the salmon.What a deal..Doesn't it make you feel proud of yourself, when you see what you saved? It is funny, I am not cheap and anyone can have anything I have..but when I save a few cents, I am pleased with myself, thinking how clever I was..haha..
    Have a happy rest of the week..
    xoxoCarolyn

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  63. What a great set of pics, ye olde England, butcher baker and er cobbler, its almost French.

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  64. Just posted my last post on my dads account sorry.

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  65. Carolyn I have always been a very careful shopper but when I get a really good saving I am always pretty pleased with myself. Especailly when I get so many meals as I did in this case :-) Thanks for the comments. Diane

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  66. Roz, Paul, Gordon whatever LOL. I agree it is almost French other than you don't have to wrack your brains to think of the right word! It is a fantastic market I was very impressed. Diane

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  67. Even if you dont go often, it looks like a nice place to visit.
    And I'd like one of those chocolate spoons - wouldn't it be nice to stir some hot milk with one?

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  68. Indie.Tea I was intrigued by those chocolate spoons but decided if I started buying I would see more and more that I would like so my hand stayed safely in my pocket :-) Diane

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  69. What a great deal on that salmon Diane. Fifteen steaks - wow.

    That is one gorgeous market. I could spend the day (or days) there.
    Sam

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  70. Sam I would like to take another visit there but time is running short now. I am counting down the days till I am on my way to France :-)))))) Diane

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  71. Your pie looks gorgeous; I love the pastry decorations you've done on top..what a good idea! Enjoy your St Patrick's day

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  72. I absolutely love this food focused post! The food and produce just looks so delicious. I wish I could have seen it right there with you.

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  73. Brittany the market is excellent and the produce was so very fresh.
    The pie was really yummy and as the cherries are from the garden it is a cheap dish. Diane

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  74. What a fun trip that was going to the market with Anne. Good deal on the salmon too.

    So it's about time to go back to the Charente. So excited for you to get back.

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  75. Becca it was fun and Anne was such good company. I am counting the days down to my return :-))) Diane

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