You can’t help but notice that some American supermarkets are selling bags of precubed butternut squash and buckets of prechopped mirepoix, but I have yet to hear of anyone peeling your asparagus for you as they do at the market in Munich. And I must say, I might rather like it if they did.

Nicky at Delicious:Days reports that some stalls at the Viktualienmarkt will peel your white asparagus for free, within five minutes—and send you home with your peelings in a nice little bag if you’d like.

A comment on the post, from blogger Hande of Food Vagabond, tells tales of markets in Rome where they clean and prep your artichokes for you. Such glorious heights I never imagined might exist. I don’t mind chopping my own onion, carrot, or squash, but to avoid prepping artichokes for the rest of my life sounds blissful. Sign me up.

At the San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmers Market I was recently surprised to see that one enterprising vendor was offering spring fava beans already shelled. I had never seen that before.

Though, as a friend quickly pointed out, the shelling is hardly the annoying part. It’s squeezing each and every bean out of its jacket that really becomes tedious. I could definitely be swayed to buy more fava beans if they came ready to eat.

But really, the artichokes—that would be a winner.

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