Pumpkin Market

Barbara Klein market 2 Comments


Why go far? Come local!

There is a lovely weekly market on Saturdays in my hometown in Kleinbasel: Matthäusmarkt, more than 20 producers sell their vegetable, fruit, homemade bread, cheese and other dairy products, olive oil, wine, herbs and jams. When you are hungry or thirsty you can select delicious food from all over the world.

Four times a year there is a seasonal market, today it is the Pumpkin Market, where the first pumpkins of the season will be sold. The seasonal markets always attract and invite other activities other than the weekly market, too: from wild flower plants and seeds over a group of knitarting aficionados to political campaigning.


Lovely arrangement of different types of pumpkins

Most important: we are also part of the pumpkin market selling our homemade chutneys, ketchup, fig mustard, jams and gelées. And a first time for my new car (its nickname is Dick, an anagram, figure it out yourself!) which I have only picked up yesterday.

Can you imagine all the hands-on and organisational work which goes into preparing for a market? As I am fairly new at that I am still learning … One thing to have all the products ready, properly labelled and priced, another thing to organise your own stand, decoration, paperwork, transport, getting up early in the morning.

A rather hectic start in the early morning as the market opens at 8 am. Weather not too promising, grey clouds about to release themselves – please behave yourselves.

LB pumpkin

Proud of my daughter who carved this Halloween pumpkin

The market is a lovely experience, in spite of occasional rain. As I use an inkjet printer, my labels are in danger, we try our best to cover them. Looks silly though draping a plastic pink leopard print rain cape over everything!

LB products

What a splendid idea to offer a tasting of fig mustard, prune gelée and spicy nectarine chutney

Not so splendid when people dip their half eaten crackers directly into the gelée, it takes some courage to tell them off. I am normally rather an introvert person but talking about food comes naturally to me and I like to tell my customers what they can do with my products (the spicy nectarine chutneys goes well in a vegetarian dish with a lemon Basmati rice and toasted cashew nuts).

You get to meet interesting people: farmers from nearby Germany make fresh apple juice, explaining that at first you have to cut the apples in rough pieces so they can release their juice. They use antique and simple machinery:

apple cutter

Cutting the apples in rough pieces

apple juicer

Pressing apple juice

And there is this couple, she is rolling her dough for Boerek with such an elegance, speaking of years of practice. What a pleasure to watch her rolling her dough here. We are too late for her fresh Boerek, they have sold everything but he is offering us a drink of salted yoghurt – thank you.

wild flowers

Selling wild flowers and herbs

We are pleased with our market experience, with the friendliness of the people, the multicultural and peaceful atmosphere, our friends and family come to visit, taste our products and buy. Their favourites are honey pickles and prune gelées in those old fashioned glass containers and the spicy nectarine chutney and spicy fig mustard from this year’s harvest of my fig tree, some of you might remember how that poor thing looked last year.

We will be back for the Zimtmarkt (cinnamon market) with our extended range of products (chocolate delicacies, our soy wax fragranced candles soaps and diffuser. For those living in or near Basel: the date is December 17, 2011.


We will be back!


Share your stories: did you ever sell on a market,? What did you sell? What was the nicest compliment you received?

Comments 2

  1. Wow! I had no idea that you were such an expert in the kitchen, Barbara! =) Your display looked amazing and I hope you had a really successful day of sales and making new friends. =)

    I’m also super impressed with the pumpkin that your daughter carved! =) It should be one of your logos! I was surprised to find them selling pumpkins at the local supermarket here considering how they don’t celebrate Halloween much. =P

    1. @Samantha Bangayan Hi, Sam, wonderful to hear from you! And thanks for your lovely comment, charmer you!

      Unfortunately, that carved pumpkin had a very short life, quickly moulding away …

      We do not celebrate Halloween in Switzerland either, except for the expats here in Basel. But I remember that we once got this horrible Scream costume (inclusive the blood streaming mask) for Rebecca in Miami and she would scare the world (or whatever) out of all the blissfully unaware neighbours – that’s how you make yourself a reputation.

      But growing all different kind of squash has become quite popular here and the local farmers have their own markets at their farms, locally grown products at very fair prices as compared to the supermarkets where they sell for a fortune.

      😉 and hugs Barbara

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