This afternoon, I headed down to the community market to get to know my new neighbourhood and hopefully pick up some delicious food. I wasn’t disappointed – although there weren’t a huge number of stalls, they were all selling intriguing things. I came away with a bottle of strawberry vinegar (fancy vinegarettes! And apparently really good on pancakes), some green chilli sauce, and two rather pricey but absolutely heavenly pieces of cheese. I hadn’t planned on buying any cheese and I won’t be repeating the purchase every month, but I was promised the best cheese I’d ever tasted and it really was. So now I have a small piece of a sweet, creamy blue and a slightly larger square of British Roquette, waiting for me to do something special with (and in the meantime, I must transfer them to new wrappings apparently – something I never knew!).
After the market I headed up to the community shop, which did have a stall on the market but sells far more than they could fit on a single tressle table. Again, I wasn’t disappointed. I’ve come away with a bag of dried chickpeas, £2.33/kg compared to £2.88/kg of tinned from Sainsbury’s (with almost half the weight being water), a bag of porridge oats at 94p/kg compared to £1.10/kg from the supermarket, half a dozen local free range eggs at £1.06 instead of £1.70, and some golden granulated sugar, the price of which I’ve forgotten (I suspect it was actually more expensive than the supermarket bags, but never mind).
It wasn’t a bad haul! I’m really happy to have such a great shop within walking distance. They also sell pasta, rice, dried fruit, nuts, flour, butter, milk, tins of beans, spreads, syrups, cordials… all the sorts of things you’d expect from a health food shop, but without the price mark-up. Since it’s a co-operative, I’d get a 10% discount if I joined, but I’d also need to commit to a certain number of hours a month working there and I can’t quite do that just yet.
Now I’m off to my cookery lesson, which I’m sure will be just as inspiring! I’ll let you know what I learn.