When it comes to Markets, big cities sure know how to do it.
This morning Ariel and I spent the morning at Borough Food Market, a renowned London weekend morning hotspot nestled under the bridge of a rumbling National Rail thorough way.
There was so much of everything: cheese, meat, pastries, people… All adding to the eclectic sights and smells that make Market life so lively and vivid. There were samples everywhere, and I weaved between the crowds for a chance to try matured cheeses, 72% cocoa brownies baked this morning, prosciutto crudo and salted caramel fudge.
Breakfast for me was a pain au chocolat bought from one of the centre stands and inhaled rapidly while browsing for fresh vegetables, the flaky layers of pastry crumbling into a pile in my scarf. Eating quickly meant I had more time to perform a dance of photographic aerobatics, crouching down to take photos of delicate baby button mushrooms and lunging forward for shots of asparagus paintbrushes.
Borough Market hosts a number of food-on-the-spot stalls, each of which churns out a different delectable delight. Knowing I’d love it, Ariel took me to the stall at the edge of the market, where Swiss raclette cheese was melted and scraped onto a sandwich. It smelled like cheese fondue, and attracted throngs of people, all of whom gathered around to take photos and video of the cheese being scraped onto bread and mini gherkins. Next to me, the glossy cow’s milk top simmered and browned.
For lunch Ariel got a vegetarian burger with quinoa as well as pesto potatoes and a salad. I got a falafel wrap which I was about halfway through eating when it split open, the juices dripping all over the knees of my jeans. I had to eat the rest with Ariel’s fork. I hope the pigeons like pickled red cabbage.
After just a few hours, Ariel’s big bag was packed full of Market goods:
- Five generous chunks of good-quality soft cheeses (miraculously bought for £10 in an “introduction to cheese” deal!)
- Potted wild boar spread with smoked ham hock and sherry;
- Four venison burgers;
- Four German bockwurst sausages for a birthday barbecue we’re going to tonight;
- Sweet potatoes for sweet potato gnocchi and six round “courgettes” (what the Brits call zucchinis) for stuffing;
- And a bottle of thirst-quenching Chegworth Valley apple and beetroot juice, which I drank the very second I jumped off my bicycle at home
Market trip: a success.