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Where can I find actual currants in Chicago?
August 19, 2012 12:37 PM   Subscribe

Where in Chicago can I buy black or red currants?

My girlfriend picked up a taste for them when she was in England, and I'd love to find some for her that isn't Absolute Currant. I bought some Zante currants before I realized they were actually raisins and not currants, so while they taste fine, they're not the same. Even a farmers market or some such that regularly stocks them would be appreciated too. I have already checked the whole foods around me, so no luck there.

Bonus points: a decent recipe for turning some into syrup as well.
posted by Carillon to Food & Drink (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Try one of the Polish neighborhoods and look for things labelled czarnej porzeczki, that's black currant. Sok z czarnej porzeczki, for example, is black currant juice.

I haven't been there in years, but if I recall correctly Devon Market in Rogers Park had a large selection of Polish items and also a big produce area, so you may get lucky there.
posted by troika at 12:49 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I think it's just a bit late in the year for fresh currants. When in season, they shouldn't be too hard to find at Whole Foods et al.

The Polish market suggestion is good for currant syrups, preserves, etc.
posted by kickingtheground at 12:52 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Try a homebrew store - they sometimes have them for use in fruity European brews.
posted by julthumbscrew at 2:03 PM on August 19, 2012


The grocery store closest to me had red and black currants two weeks ago. I don't know if they still have them. Pete's at 2526 W Cermak.
posted by phunniemee at 2:43 PM on August 19, 2012


I used to see them at the Green City Market (in Lincoln Park near the zoo), which is a great place to look for any number of unusual fruits and vegetables. There was at least one vendor at the market that sold currants and gooseberries (a close relative of currants) in a variety of colors/types. I haven't lived in Chicago for a few years now, but I can't imagine that the Green City Market has gotten any less diverse in terms of produce offered. The main issue will just be whether they're in season right now.
posted by jessypie at 2:43 PM on August 19, 2012


Get in touch with the manager of the largest farmers' market.
posted by brujita at 4:30 PM on August 19, 2012


If you can't get them fresh, Amazon has the dried ones.
posted by snickerdoodle at 7:41 PM on August 19, 2012


The Dill Pickle Food Co-op (3039 W. Fullerton, Logan Square) might have them. If they don't, ask the staff if they can order them for you.

(Full disclosure: I am a board member of the co-op, but can vouch for the staff going out of their way for customers in ordering products they don't normally carry - I have a stockpile of a particular brand of farro right now that I couldn't get elsewhere because I asked for it. And no, you don't need to be a member to shop there.)
posted by deliciae at 8:46 PM on August 19, 2012


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