London Life Markets

islington farmers market

September 6, 2012

It’s been a while since i’ve written about some of the farmers markets i visit. I already blogged about my favourite, but there are a few more.

Today, let me introduce you to islington farmers market. It’s the closest one to me and runs on a sunday morning. If i haven’t been able to go food shopping on a saturday, this is one of 2 places you’ll find me at.

As we’re getting ready for autumn and i’m struggling to let go of summer i kept this post till now in order to prolong the feeling!! The photos were taken back in june so some produce are no longer in season. To me, all seasons at a farmers market are precious but for now let’s bathe in some sunshine and pretend we’re back in june…..

I love nothing better than taking my shopping bags and setting off to a busy and buzzing food market. The anticipation, the feast for the eyes, the mouth watering produces… it never fails to enchant me and evokes feelings of self-nurture.


Of course, i have my favourite stands, so let me introduce you to some of them. First off, wild country organics, the organic salad stall. They grow their own crop and always have interesting produce. Judge for yourselves.

Zucchini flowers, or also known as courgette flowers. A true delicacy. Here’s a recipe for stuffed zucchini.

Aubergine or, for some of you, eggplant.

Ridged cucumbers. Yum!

What i particularly like is the unusual produce they sell. Here are some edible flowers. I love decorating a salad with them.

Some verbena leaves, also known as vervain. I use them for making tea.

Elderflower heads. Have you ever made a drink with them? No? Recipe follows!

Ingredients: 30g elderflower heads, 1 litre boiling water, 500g caster sugar, 100ml lemon juice, 1 sliced orange, 2 sliced lemons.

Method: Pour the boiling water over the sugar in a very large mixing bowl. Stir well and leave to cool. Add the lemon juice, the orange and lemon slices and then the flowers. Leave in a cool place for 24 hours, stirring occasionally. Strain into a bottle. Done!

Another great stand is windrush valley goat dairy. All their produce is made from the milk of their herd of 32 pedigree british saanen goats in the cotswolds. They use only traditional cheese-making methods. Being diary intolerant, i treat myself from time to time to a little bit of sheeps or goats yoghurt and feta cheese. But if you love cheese, you will love their products. They are known for making the best baked cheese cake ever. I tried it once and it was out of this world!

A german bread stand. Artisan foods. No mean feat. We all know german bread is best! In fact, they have the most delicious 100% rye bread in the whole of london.

The tomato stall. Yep, that’s all they do.

Now i hope for those who are vegetarian, vegan or simply fish free, you don’t take offence to the next photos. I love fish and no market shop is complete without it. I’ve been a supporter of small produce sellers for many years and in particular i like to buy the freshest fish possible. There is nothing better than to buy from people who fish themselves. That’s what i do.

I’m a bit obsessed with oily fish. It can be fresh sardines, herring or mackerel or simply smoked trout, mackerel or salmon. Whatever i can find i take.

I like to eat sustainable fish as much as possible and this kind of fish shopping lends itself to it. If you don’t like fish, look away!

Let’s end with chegworth valley. Their varieties of apple juices are what makes them unique and i dare you to try them. I also really like their apples and pears and other fruits in season.

I don’t know about you but i’m now hungry. I hope you’ve enjoyed some of this little food tour and maybe i’ve inspired you to visit a farmers market from time to time. All the stalls travel around the country, so look at my links for dates and locations. Next week i’ll introduce you to broadway market, a slightly different and more edgy place.

Have you got any favourite recipes with some of the ingredients i showed you here? Do tell! Have a great weekend whatever you’re up to. I shall see you back here on monday. For those who have tickets for the last days of the paralympic games or indeed to the closing ceremony, enjoy!! It’s been a fantastic summer!!!

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  • Reply Sam Lennie September 6, 2012 at 4:50 pm

    So much to choose from! If I go to a market like this I tend to buy too much and inevitably by the end of the week I’m left with over ripe or spoiled items that end up in the green bin.

    I’ll have to try your elderflower receipe, sounds really nice with the citrus added x

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 7:48 pm

      Shame! I suppose then it’s supermarkets all the way for you….

      Yes, try it and report back:)

      • Reply Sam Lennie September 11, 2012 at 3:23 pm

        I get my vegetables delivered to me from Riverford farm these days. It’s only really me in the family that eats lots of vegetables and I therefore have to get through masses of it singlehandedly!

  • Reply Igor September 6, 2012 at 5:11 pm

    I so love farmers’ markets, Tina!! And with your pics I am totally looking forward to my weekend visit to the local market here in Munich. So fun to see Laugenstangen on the market:-) Hahah, a German delicacy lol

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 7:50 pm

      Laugenstangen remind me so much of my Childhood. I let you into a secret. When I go to Germany I ALWAYS have to have either a Bretzel, Streusselstückchen, or a Hanuta! It’s like a must!!I never eat that stuff here but someone love it when I’m there:)

  • Reply geraldine September 6, 2012 at 5:46 pm

    Wow, I didn’t know about this market and not far from me too. The edible flowers would make an impressive looking salad. I’ve never tried Zucchini flowers, thanks for the introduction and recipe. I adore elderflower drinks so will make a bee line for that stall when I visit and try out your recipe. 🙂

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 7:52 pm

      Yes. Let me know if you want to go one Sunday. You could bring the family:)

      You’ll be surprised the things you find there that can’t be bought in supermarkets! x

  • Reply caroline @trend-daily September 6, 2012 at 10:33 pm

    Zucchini flowers and laugenstange!!! Yum!! Fabulous shots-I do love my virtual trips around ‘town’ with you lovely-it’s the only way I get to see it these days. Have a fabulous day with the girls-so sorry I can’t be there-again… xx

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 7:53 pm

      NOT together Caroline. Separately!!:) Pleased to be of service:)
      Sorry you couldn’t join us…. x

  • Reply Gerard @WalnutGrey September 6, 2012 at 11:12 pm

    Hey Tina. Great images here… especially the breads, pastries and cheeses. We have a Peckham farmers market but it’s not great. The Islington one looks very impressive.

    I’m not with you on prolonging summer. Had enough and so looking to autumn. Just wish she would hurry our way.

    Have a great weekend xx

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 7:54 pm

      You know, it started off very small and I used to go to Marylebone Farmers Market on a Sunday. Now, it’s nearly as good and much closer to me. Maybe Peckham will advance..

      Well, darling Mr Grey, autumn has definitely arrived!! x

  • Reply Theresa September 7, 2012 at 7:02 am

    Your farmers market looks gorgeous…Well, your photos are certainly helping. We have two local farmers markets, one on Wednesday and the other on Sunday. We go to the one on Wednesday most often. Hm, I’m wondering what the difference is between arugula and wild rocket? I do have a great recipe that calls for arugula. Anyway, thank you for sharing these beautiful photos and the elderflower recipe. You’ve made me hungry, as well. 🙂 Happy weekend, Tina!

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 7:57 pm

      Arugula and wild rocket is one and the same. Arugula is the italian word it:) Try your recipe and maybe report back!
      Glad you visit the farmers market. Also a great thing to do with kids and expose them to ‘real food’ when they’re young. They will thank you for it later…
      Hope you had a good weekend!

  • Reply parisbreakfast September 7, 2012 at 9:00 am

    remembrances of things past…
    I used to go the Islington flea with a boyfriend antique 4 AM in the morning if I recall correctly.
    Everything here looks YUM
    Love British food markets!!
    merci carolg

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 9:10 pm

      Yes, those were the days. Islington has changed and there’s no flea market any longer:(( 4am in the morning! Wow!

      I used to go to Paris to eat and visit the food markets. In the past 10 years we’ve come far in the UK and now when abroad, I miss the food here!

  • Reply Holly September 7, 2012 at 10:33 am

    Another fabulous post! True feast for the eyes, and yes, now I am hungry! Every time I hop over here I wish I lived in London so I could visit all these magnificent places you introduce us to 🙂

    Courgette flowers are so yummy! My grandmother made them all the time so they remind me of her. She battered them up (egg and breadcrumbs) and then deep fried them!!! So not healthy, but oh so delicious. The stuffed recipe sounds amazing. Will have to try it one day.

    Thanks for sharing all this Tina Xx.

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 9:12 pm

      Oh, but you’re going to live in the second best city… Berlin! Yay!!

      How nice your grandmother made the fried courgette flowers. I cna just imagine little Holly scoffing them up:)

  • Reply Catherine Bedson September 7, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    Everything here looks so good..seasonal and full of colour, love visiting farmers markets and cooking up yummy dishes with my bounty. The gooseberries are interesting you don’t really see them here would love to try them with a pork chop with some of that beautiful bread and cheese to start the meal. Enjoy your weekend Tina. Catherine x

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 9:14 pm

      Yes, you would cook an incredible treat with everything. Would be cool if one day we met (wherever) and shared such an experience.
      Then we would go back and cook a meal, style and photograph it and then blogg about it together!!! Deal??

  • Reply Kelly September 7, 2012 at 2:10 pm

    Lovely photo’s Tina, my mouth is watering looking at all of those fresh vegetables.

    Will definitely try the elderflower recipe when they come back in season xx

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 9:16 pm

      Yum!! I do go on overdrive when at the market. I just love all the freshness, the colours and smell.
      I’ll let you know when I see the elderflowers back… x

  • Reply Nicola September 7, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    Oh my goodness, I’m now so hungry for some fresh delicious food and it’s only 10 past 4 in the afternoon!

    Fabulous photos of fabulous products. Never thought to make my own elderflower, what a great idea. Intend to make some just as soon as I find the ingredients x

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 9:18 pm

      4.10pm tea time. Scones with cream and jam! Oh no, this is about fresh vegetables….

      Your teenage brood would love that elderflower drink. x

  • Reply leah of sang the bird September 9, 2012 at 10:13 am

    Oh I’d love to make elderflower infused gin… I love the farmers markets and your pics are stunning. The farmers markets in my town are much more rural and hippy-ish… but i still love them.
    And fresh fish is wonderful. My partner is a rock fisherman and these 2 weeks past have seen us with healthy serves of freshly caught fish. Have a wonderful weekend xx

    • Reply tina September 10, 2012 at 9:30 pm

      There’s a lot to be said for rural and hippy-ish markets. For me, it’s all about the natural and fresh food and supporting the local farmers. End of!

      Fresh fish is probably my favourite food ever. There’s nothing like eating fish that’s just been caught. Getting it the next day is the second best. I mainly eat sustainable fish and a week without grilled sardines, mackerel or herring is torture:)

      How nice that you were able to benefit from freshly caught fish. The ultimate!! xx

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