Sunday, 20 February 2011

West Ealing Farmers' Market

A rare non cookery book post - sometimes the ingredients are so good, you don't need to do anything to them.                                                               

The other thing which made this cold-filled weekend bearable was a two hour double bill of The Killing (to which S & I are both addicted), served up with an array of produce from our farmers' market, which is a 5 minute walk away every Saturday.

I always go, whatever the weather - I always feel that if they've made the effort and are going to stand in the rain and cold, then I should at least go and see what they're selling. I always buy from Angela Malik (her Thai pesto and an assortment of samosas, usually), who have been loyal to the market since it started - this despite the fact the demographic of WEFM is quite elderly and generally pass over a stall selling Indian food. Shame. Yesterday I bought some sourdough, feeling too lazy and ill to make any,some lovely, sweet, fresh tomatoes from the tomato stall (organic certified from the Isle of Wight - I don't usually buy tomatoes out of season at elevated prices, but yesterday I just couldn't resist) and cheese from the Bath Soft Cheese Co - inspired combination of West Country organic dairy and an Italian cheesemaker, for a lovely creamy blue cheese (much more reminiscent of a dolcelate torta than anything I've before tasted from the UK) and a delicious soft cheese which oozed its way across the plate in minutes.

So, toasted sourdough with butter melted through it, a tomato and onion salad, and the cheese, along with a bottle of wine, and for me, a couple of rum hot toddies for afters. Just what I needed.

My only other purchase at the farmers market was a pot of hyacinths for a mere £2. So I'm looking forward to their scent filling my kitchen in the next few weeks.

I hear rumblings from the stallholders at West Ealing that the market isn't doing well in terms of footfall. I'd hate for any of them to give up - it may be a small market, but it's much better value than most of them (eg., Marylebone, which is lovely, but expensive)  if you are on a budget. I regularly buy chicken carcasses/backs for stock and soup, odd cuts like rolled lamb breasts, very cheap game (one supplier even has rook and squirrel) as well as all the regular deals with the fruit and vegetable stalls. It's an important part of my weekly shop.


  1. You've sold it to me - I've only been once a few years ago and it was disappointing but you've fired me up for a revisit. Nice to know there's a fellow food blogger in West Ealing :-)

  2. There's a few of us around. I do think the market is worth persevering with. There are always good deals on meat, the sort of stuff which is useful to have around - like the sausage/pork stall which sells diced bacon at a ridiculously cheap price. Good value. In the next few weeks there'll be more stalls back too - selling seedlings, pots of herbs, organic salads....

  3. oooh i'm def going to get myself down there this weekend! Are you on twitter?

  4. For those who like books as well as food, there are numerous charity shops in West Ealing with altogether a couple of thousand books. (I did try to count/estimate the number once). The YMCA shop has the best organised selection but the others are all worth scanning. I shouldn't be advertising this because I might miss out on some gems that people donate.