Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Central Market ....everything is bigger in Texas

Remember when I wrote a post about Jungle Jim's, the huge international grocery store we visited over our Christmas in Cincinatti?

Now consider.... Central Market. Central Market is like Whole Foods, except Texas sized. Read: bigger. And better.They only exist in Texas.  It's like entering a whole new world. I never go there because it's more expensive, but it's also amazing. So today, when I stopped in thinking I'd just grab some of the gourmet gelato that they serve at the exit, I ended up with far more than I intended because everything looks SO GOOD.

*None of the photos below are my own. They're all from flikr. Click on them to find the photographer.
Central Market

Purdy, isn't it? Sort of like an oversized Texas barn. They've set it up like a maze. If you know what you're doing, you slip through side doors to the sections you want to be in. If you don't, they intentionally direct you through every single section before you end up at the exit, having seen many strange and wonderful things. Oh, and they have samples, lots of them. And tons and tons of organic stuff.

There's a full huge section for produce, and it's nice. Once you get to the end you find the exotic and tropical produce.

Central Market - Dallas

See? Three pretty colors of cauliflower, all attractively displayed.

Multicolored Cauliflower

Meat, and lots of it. My friends that make their own sushi always buy their fish here.My aunt always gets their pre-spiced and interesting flavored burger patties when we grill out.

Central Market - Dallas

Central Market - Dallas

You can buy from the stacks of nice organic breads, or you can buy from their fresh bakery section:
Central Market - Dallas

.... which is right before the artisinal cheese section, which is gorgeous. They always have samples and I always am ready to grab the sample bread, dip it in the sample oil, and have it with a slice of sample cheese. YUM.In the middle of this aisle are tables with huge rounds of cheese, just there as temptation.

Central Market - Dallas

It's huge, right? I mean... wine:
Central Market - Dallas

but there's a whole wall for beer too:
Central Market - Dallas

and a whole row of shelves just for salsa:
Central Market  - Dallas

They have all the cool organic trendy stuff, like a section for various nut butters:
Central Market

Actually I always get stuck at the end in the buffet section. There's a long line of sauces and dips like hummus and all different kinds of fresh salsa and whatever other kind of sauce you can imagine. In fact, I just picked up some of their hummus. There's probably six different kinds of olives (which I do not like), and lots and lots of ready-made food that you pay for by weight. Or you can order at their grill - or go to the salad bar. Or pick up some Paciugo gelato. Or get one of their ready-made meals, which I noticed today weren't priced too badly for being things like chicken vindaloo or red enchiladas.

Try some?

I think it sounds like a brilliant option for those evenings when I'm running home and don't have all the ingredients I need to cook.

The even offer cooking schools and fun classes and events.... and everything I've had from there always seems fresh. I love it.

Parrot Fish

Tuna Niçoise Salad

That's why I never go there. It's dangerous. :)


Jen said...

Central Market was one of the reasons I first admitted living in Texas wasn't so bad after all. ;-) The first year I lived here, my roommate and I would often go to CM on a Saturday for free lunch (samples throughout the store).

Bethany said...

Wow, that place looks amazing! We have a Whole Foods here, maybe it could be called a mini Central Market...hehe. Very cool!