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The best carrot I ever ate wasn’t charred, blistered, sous-vided, dusted with ashes, or suffering any of the indignities chefs now routinely submit our vegetables to. The best carrot I ever ate came right out of the ground.
I credit Julia Child for my first trip to the Municipal Market of Atlanta on Edgewood Avenue one bright morning in 1975. Eager to dazzle my new husband with my culinary prowess and introduce him to the food I grew up with, I had decided to make Child’s lapin à la moutarde, only to find that, back then, only poor people and country folks in Georgia ate rabbit. No regular grocery stores carried it. But the market did, so I dove into a world where my senses were assaulted by whole pigs, obscene-looking viscera, fatback encrusted with salt, baggies of edible kaolin, little bunches of yellow roots, enormous bouquets of collards, and, yes, fresh rabbit sold at the fish counter. I was hooked.