Great foodie shopping at Cape Town’s Oranjezicht Market

Today we’re heading to beautiful Granger Bay close to Cape Town’s Waterfront. How I love a food market and the Oranjezicht farmers market is absolutely fabulous. It’s a community farmers-style market for independent local farmers and artisanal food producers that’s set overlooking the sparkling sea.

There’s plenty of seating where you can relax and munch on the many dishes available and a wide range of stalls to delight. The tempting displays definitely make me buy more, but as I love everything I’ve bought there that’s really not a problem.

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The market looks out over the azure sea

As you walk in you’re greeted by a fabulous floral display, include vibrant bunches of perfect proteas – South Africa’s national flower.

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Beautiful bunches of proteas to take home

Fresh produce

This has got to be the best place in Cape Town to stock up on all the fresh stuff you’re going to need for your week. The fruit and vegetable displays are stunning and everything is of the highest quality. Boxes of fresh figs, massively juicy watermelons, plump grapes, carrots in myriad shades, tomatoes, chillis, herbs, leaves, garlic…well, pretty much whatever that’s seasonal and delicious. Make sure you take a bag – you’re not going to be able to carry it all if you don’t! I think I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.

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Chillis in different shapes, sizes and colours

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How’s this for a vegetable display…almost makes me want to become vegetarian

More chillis to add spice to your life

A fresh herb selection and beans that are purple and yellow

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Heirloom tomatoes – juicily bursting with flavour

A table full of squash is a work of art

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Love the pink oyster mushrooms…and you can even grow your own

Some of the wonderful fruit on offer

There’s also plenty of great-quality meat, cheese, bread, fish and sauces available.

Snacking opportunities and takeaways

As well as all the fresh produce there’s so much to tuck into at once to keep your shopping strength up – or to take home for later feasting. Baked goods, fresh bread, samosas, sushi, pies, wraps, Vietnamese rolls, eggs Benedict, steak rolls in many forms, bacon and egg croissants, bagels..it’s astounding. Here’s a small selection of what’s on offer.

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You’ll find plenty of sweet treats to indulge in

Perfect little pies made in a muffin pan

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The sweetest and most custardy of Portuguese custard tarts

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The chefs are busy with bacon and potato rosti

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The colourful sushi selection is described with passion

The prettiest of plants are also on display

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There’s a lot of eating on the go happening here

This is some market – seriously, I could go every week and take a batch of pictures like this showcasing different products – there’s so much on offer here. My advice is to go and see for yourself – and go soon, cos you’re going to want to go back again and again.

You’ll find the Oranjezicht City Farm Market at Granger Bay Boulevard, V&A Waterfront, Cape town.

It is open every Saturday from 9am to 2pm.

Read more about the Oranjezicht City farm by clicking here.

 

What to eat and where to shop in Malton, Yorkshire

Today we’re up in beautiful North Yorkshire in what is known as Yorkshire’s food capital – the lovely country town of Malton. It’s famous for its food festival, monthly food market, Malton Cookery School, traditional food shops and Made in Malton artisan producers. It’s also James Martin’s home town. So you can tell there’s a lot of foodie stuff going on here – simply the perfect place for me to visit. You can read about my fantastic Cooking with Yorkshire Lamb workshop by clicking here.

Malton has a population of around 13,000 and is kind of halfway between York and the seaside resort of Scarborough. A pleasant train ride from London and we were ready for some Yorkshire foodie discovery. As we say in South Africa local is lekker (good).

And it’s all certainly all local ingredients at the The Talbot Yard Food Court where the shops produce everything they sell on site.

The fabulous butchery Food2Remember is aptly named – I certainly won’t forget it in a hurry. Especially as I was offered some warm boerewors to try as I stepped through the door – well impressed with his recipe for my favourite South African sausage. In Yorkshire – who’d have thought?! As well as great local meat, there was also a cabinet of delectable pastry snacks.

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Freshly made pies, pasties and scotch eggs

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An amazing array of meat and home-made sausages

Groovy Moo is a cafe and gelataria – heavenly for ice cream lovers with all your favourite flavours and more. I loved the jammy dodger ice cream (how I love those little jammy biscuits).

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Passione Della Pasta makes pasta daily and also had a fabulous array of local fruit vinegars on tap. I bought a bottle of the lovely raspberry and rhubarb – what a simple way to transform any salad.

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Authentic pasta made fresh daily

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Local vinegar in fruity flavours

There’s no shortage of bakeries in Malton, the aroma of baking floods the streets and there are plenty of tempting window displays. It’s a mouth-watering town to walk around.  Costello‘s in the market square is a family-run business with the motto: “We make our own and we do it all by hand”. The family history dates back generations with Fred Costello opening up his first shop after the war in 1945. Costello’s Malton is a more recent addition, having opened in 2014.

The range of pies available in  is mind-blowing!  And there are plenty of sweet treats to choose from and wonderful coffee, too.

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A marvellous selection of pie fillings

After much deliberation I chose this amazing barbecued pulled pork pie – love that there are contemporary options as well as the traditional offers.

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Meaty and luscious barbecue pulled pork

These are my favourite shopping discoveries in this wonderful foodie town. You can read more about it and where to shop at maltonyorkshire.co.uk.

THE LOCAL PUB

Even in these days of pubs closing at way too rapid a rate, Malton has a drinking few options. For dinner we visited The New Malton in the market square. It’s laid out over two rooms with a little bar and a warm welcome. The traditional menu offers plenty of local specialities.

Like the pork and herb sausage toad-in-the-hole with onion gravy. Well, you have to sample the Yorkshire pudding when in Yorkshire, don’t you?

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When in Yorkshire: traditional toad-in-the-hole

I love a good burger and couldn’t resist this steak burger with pancetta, Swiss cheese, dill pickle, coleslaw and home made chips. Made with top quality steak it had all the ingredients I love for a wonderful combination of flavours and textures.

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Or a burger made with best Yorkshire beef

What a wonderful foodie break in such a quintessentially English setting. And the reason I went there was because my recipe for tasty lamb koftas won first prize in the #lovelambchallenge. Click here for my two tasty lamb mince recipes.

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We stayed at The Talbot Hotel in Malton. Read all about it in the next in my series of Where to Stay, coming soon.

Barcelona’s fabulous food market: La Boqueria

So today I’m taking you back to Barcelona to what is probably my favourite bit of a city with so many fabulous parts to it. And you won’t be surprised to hear it involves food! The Mercat de Saint Josep de la Boqueria is possibly the best food market in the world. Well, I’ve not been to a better one and it’s certainly hard to imagine a more magical place packed with tantalising sights and smells.

First mentions of a market here were in 1271 but it wasn’t until 1840 that it was officially agreed to build the structure for what exists today. It’s huge, selling every kind of produce you could desire – fruit, vegetables, meat, seafood, offal, olives and preserves, fish, poultry, game, eggs, wine, oils…and there are several tempting-looking bars inside, too.

From the moment I spied (and smelled) the legs of jamon at the entrance I was entranced! The market buzzes with tourists exclaiming over Spanish delights and gasping at some of the other sights (the offal stall doesn’t go down well with most) and locals simply doing their shopping for the day. Here’s some of my favourite stalls in foodie shopping heaven.

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There’s plenty of jamon to taste…I need one of these in my kitchen at home

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This fruit stand doesn’t look real, but it is

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The beautiful seafood bar, love that it’s all displayed in mini boats

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Wild mushrooms to delight, so many of them to choose from!

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One of several bars to quench your thirst at

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Fresh fried fish anyone?

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Even the vegetables are beautiful, love these lettuces

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Bar Central has plenty of food to tempt you

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And of course there are olives, done so many ways

Take time to meander through and buy yourself a picnic, then climb the hill to Gaudi’s Parc Guell to devour your feast. Now that’s a real Barcelona day for me.

You’ll find La Boqueria on Las Ramblas, close to Liceu, Barcelona’s Opera House.

 

The taste of Naples…up on the roof

So it’s summertime in London – not that it feels much like it, let’s just say I’m not exactly sashaying around in my flip flops yet. But you have to make an effort to get into the spirit of it (#FindYourSummer) and for me that means plenty of alfresco eating (and drinking).

Today, then, we’re up on the roof of iconic British department store, John Lewis, in the heart of London’s busy shopping district – Oxford Street. The Summer Retreat is a surprising haven on high, featuring over 1,000 plants, shrubs, trees and grasses, colourful lanterns and bright blue tables to welcome you, as well as expansive views, of course.

And there’s some lovely Italian food to be had from the Rossopomodoro restaurant family. RossoTerrazza brings the street food of Naples to the rooftops of London – now that has a nice ring to it, doesn’t  it?

It’s a simple menu divided into four sections: Pizza paninis, pizza wraps, pasta salads and mozzarella skewers. You order at the counter and take your food out to enjoy in the sunshine (hopefully). It’s wonderfully peaceful up here, you can’t believe you’re in the middle of the chaos that is Oxford Street packed with its hordes of shoppers

The Zingara Pizza Panini was filled with Mozzarella, Parma ham, tomatoes, lettuce and mayonnaise. The thinnest of crispy bread with fresh, tasty ingredients inside.

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Up close to the delicious pizza panini

We also ordered the Salmone pizza wrap (smoked salmon, buffalo ricotta, sundried tomatoes, rocket) which was fishy and creamy with a peppery rocket bite. And the pasta salad (orecchiette pasta with ham, green peas, Emmental cheese, leek and rocket), a deliciously sweet and delicate dish that I’m going to have to try to reproduce at home!

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Our Neopolitan street food feast taken from above

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Cute ear-shaped pasta tossed in tasty pea sauce

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The creamy salmon and ricotta wrap

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The interior has a real feel of summer

For dessert there are daily choices and (hooray) there’s also gelato on offer. We tucked into this traditional Italian chocolate cake (called a caprese – yes, the same name as the classic salad) and a generous bowl of pistacchio gelato.

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Chocolate cake from Naples is delicious

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Here’s a view of the colourful terrace

Rosso Terrazza is on the Roof Terrace at John Lewis, 300 Oxford Street, London W1. It’s open until the end of August. It’s open from 12pm until the shop closes on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays to Sundays and from 12pm to 4pm on Wednesdays. It’s part of the John Lewis Summer Retreat, so if you’re shopping in Oxford Street take a break away from the hustle and bustle…up on the roof.

Sunday funday at Fourways Farmers Market

I do love a food market so I was excited on a recent visit to Johannesburg when my friend Sharon (a local Joburger) suggested we spent Sunday morning/lunchtime at the Fourways Farmers market.

This beautiful market is set under the trees with plenty of fantastic stalls offering local and home-made produce. Plus there’s breakfast and lunch choices and plenty of drinks to sample. It’s beautifully peaceful and hard to believe you’re pretty much in the middle of a large city. The perfect escape.

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The welcoming sign leads you into the market

One of my favourites was this spicy selection. Pretty much every spice you could imagine, beautifully laid out and tempting you as you inhale their wonderful aromas.

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Let’s get spicy…there’s so much choice

An amazing array of chilli sauces and relishes, with heat to suit all tastes. Simply Wild also has a range of mayos, including delicious garlic and wasabi.

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Time to stock up on chilli flavours

These fried chicken wraps were very much in demand and smelled delectable.

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Lunchtime…tuck into a tasty chicken wrap

There’s no shortage of sweet choices, either. From fudge in myriad flavours, wonderful Turkish Delight, macaroons and plenty of cakes and tarts.

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Something sweet to snack on

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All roads lead to good things

It’s hard to resist lamb on the spit. This flavoursome meat was stuffed into pittas with tatziki for our satisfying lunch choice. A piece of advice: make sure you sweep the whole market before you decide what you’re going to eat! There’s a large selection, after all it’s always a good thing to know exactly what’s on offer before you commit.

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Succulent lamb to savour

The leafy market was buzzing with people enjoying a sunny Sunday, good food and an amazing atmosphere. There’s also live music to enjoy as you picnic under the trees sipping on a glass of local bubbles.

I’d definitely be a regular if I lived in Joburg – and no doubt would be filling up my cupboards with new delicacies to try. And it’s a great place to absorb some of that friendly “Joburg vibe”…they really do make everyone feel right at home. Thank you Sharon for the local knowledge!

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Dogs are welcome at the market

Fourways Farmers Market is at the Earth Outdoor Nursery, Corner of Monte Casino Boulevard and William Nicol Road, Fourways, Johannesburg.

It’s open from 10am to 3pm on Sundays. Click here to find out more.

Viandas Salamanca: a Proper Spanish deli in The Strand

Living in London is wonderful, there’s always something new to discover. And I can’t tell you how excited I felt when I spotted this place. I visit Spain a lot and love the country, its people and the food. And now there’s a little touch of authentic Spain in, guess where, Covent Garden! Hooray.

Viandas Salamanca sells foodie delights from the Salamanca (north west) area of Spain. The first thing you notice when you walk in is the aroma of ham and cheese filling the air, inhale it and enjoy. One wall is covered with hanging jamons in all their glory, there are fridges full of different meaty delicacies in vacuum packs and cheeses from the region.

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A wall full of jamon…paradise

You can also ask for your jamon to be freshly carved for you off one of the legs that sits temptingly on the counter. Impossible for me to resist!

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Cheese glorious cheese

And then there’s the sandwiches – large baguettes packed full of Spanish jamon – well, overflowing with it really as you can see from the picture below! When you order one you’re given the choice of adding tomato, which is in the form of a little sachet of the tomato concotion that is used on pan con tomate. Lunch really doesn’t get much better than this!

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Looking into the Spanish treasure trove from the street, check out the amazing baguettes

This sort of produce is not cheap, but that’s no surprise as it is of the highest quality and takes a lot of time and love to produce. So go on, treat yourself. I know I did!

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The special pigs are acorn-fed to produce the delectable jamon

Viandas Salamanca is at 99 Strand, London WC2