Top five eats at Borough Market

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Ever since Jamie Oliver hopped on his moped and scooted around Borough Market to pick up supplies Londoners have loved to knock the city’s most legendary food market.  “It’s filled with tourists” they scoff, “the prices are astronomical”.  It is true that if you head to Borough Market on a Saturday mid morning you will have to queue for literally hours for a cup of Monmouth coffee and happy snappers will cluster to take photos of you, an actual person, actually doing their shopping at Borough.  However, living in London I came to love the market.

Parmigiano and proscuitto for sale at Borough

I was lucky enough to work right nearby so I could take advantage of shopping there on Thursdays and Fridays when the crowds are absent and this would be my top tip for Borough market visitors – don’t go on Saturdays.  If I absolutely had to visit on a Saturday then I always tried to get there as early as possible in the morning to beat the crowds.

I found Borough Market was one of the few places I could reliably get various esoteric ingredients like Japanese daikon radish and also the place to find out about new and interesting products like the hemp falafel (delicious), and if it all got too much I would always escape to one of the Borough Market restaurants like the excellent Roast or newly opened Elliot’s Cafe.

Another reason to go on Thursday’s – cooking demonstrations (and tasters) using ingredients all from Borough Market

One of my favourite parts about Borough Market was being able to have an excellent lunch while shopping.  Multi tasking we women like to call it.  These are my favourites:

1.  Brindisa
As the queue attests it is impossible to go past Brindisa’s chorizo and pepper roll (£3.75).  Cooked on a little hot plate right next to Brindisa’s shop at Borough the ingredients are simple: top quality, fiery chorizo, slow roasted red pepper and rocket all drizzled with a dash of extra virgin olive oil and sandwiched in a floury bun.  Pure perfection.

Perfection in a bun – Brindisa’s chorizo roll

2.  Kappacasein
On a wintery day, the raclette stand is where I always head.  I discovered raclette when learning to ski in France and my love affair with this cheesy potato delight has never abated since.  It’s all about the potatoes a little boiled and a little grilled and then the melted Ogleshield cheese which you can see bubbling away as you wait.  I particularly like how the Borough Market version has tiny salty cornichons wedged inside.

Cheesey, gooey raclette

3. Le Marché du Quartier
A relative newcomer to the Borough Market lunch scene is the hot duck confit roll (£5) from the Le Marche a Quarter.  The duck is slow cooked until it is tender and generously piled on to leave you in ducky heaven.

Confit duck

4.  Furness Fish 
Right in the middle of the market you find Furness Fish which sells seafood and also huge woks of giant curry.  I like the just-the-right-amount-of-spicy green thai curry with mussels, calamari, shrimp, potatoes, and a complex, coconut flavoured sauce.

Giant curry – you can have it Thai style or Carribbean

5.  Shellseekers
For a little bit of gourmet in the Borough experience I like the hand-dived scallops served on the shell from Shellseekers (£4.50).  You get two scallops seared to a light brown tan, sprinkled with crunchy bacon bits and vegetable stir fry.  Delicious.  

And for an even quicker snack it is hard to go past the towers of famous Borough market brownies, shucked-to-order oysters (four for £3.50) at Richard Hawards or the turkish delight stand selling wobbly, soft blocks of fluffy turkish delight in flavours like pomengranate, walnut and cinnamon (three for £1).    

Essentials
Details: Borough Market, Between Stoney St, Cathedral St and Borough High St,  SE1 1TL. (Tube: London Bridge). Hours: 11am-5pm Thur; noon-6pm Fri; 8am-5pm Sat.

12 comments

  1. There is an incredible stall selling Ubriaco (“drunken”) cheese, which is incredible and a must-try.

    TW bought mussels from Borough at the weekend – utterly delicious.

  2. The Whitecross Street market on Friday lunch times is also pretty good, especially if you’re working in The City. It’s great to stroll away from the hustle and bustle to the (relative) calm of the market. 🙂

  3. I was half expecting to see the duck confit roll…and here it is! I knew you couldn’t miss it.

  4. I’ll have a chorizo roll this Thursday and think of you…(though I’m also pretty partial to the toasted piadinas).

  5. Thanks for that. I need to update myself with BM food & drinks again. Hope all is going well for you. Rx

  6. I am sorry to report I am over the market. There are some great products but I think it’s become too expensive 8-(

  7. What about the lovely pies from Mrs Elizabeth King, and hot sausage rolls from Ginger Pig, and mezze from The Turkish Table… You are absolutely right – Borough is amazing.

  8. Blonde – Yes I have had that – the cheese drunk in red wine – so good…

    FlowerGirl – I love Whitecross Street as well – I did a post on that a while ago. Especially the burritos.

    Anon – Yes it is a must.

    Tori – I continue to be jealous of how close you live to Borough.

    Rosana – There is always something new there.

    TheSingle Eater – Yes price is an issue but I think you do get the quality at Borough

    Bron – Oh yes the hot sausage rolls from Ginger Pig – so great – although I wish they had tomato sauce.

  9. TC's Adventures in Foodland

    Such an awesome market and what a great post. If you ever get the chance, try Rialto food market in Venice. The old man cicchetti bars are good as well.

  10. Hi Cara

    All valid tips. one my mainstay was the chroizo and pepper sanga but seeing the new duck sandwich I will be heading there to try it. To make life a wee bit easier – where abouts can I find that stall as I am heading back in the new year?

    PhotoMonkey
    http://sharkingforchipsanddrinks.wordpress.com/
    Twitter: twitter.com/shark4chipdrink

  11. Beautiful, as always. Smiling and love your
    finger food brisbane related ideas..

  12. Very pleased to see the raclette stand in there at number two, a personal favourite of mine!

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