Freelance writer and poet from London; if you would like to read my poetry, please check out my book, 'Poems on the Page', available from tinyurl.com/pgyyx76.
Published October 16th 2013
A Fuelling Station for Hungry Tourists
Giant Meringues by Comptoir Gourmand
I had just had a meal down at the pub and was on my way home when I stumbled upon Borough Market. Stalls of street food, tables with cake, oh how I wish I hadn't just 'ate'. There were tempting smells, enticing colours; my brain was walking to the train station, my feet were already on the doorstep of Comptoir Gourmand.
Chef-patissier, Sebastien Wind, offered me a brownie sample. Having just eaten a rather disappointing brownie at The Old Thameside Inn, my brain told me not to accept, but by this point the brownie was already melting on my tongue. 70% cocoa heaven.
Bead and Butter Pudding
Looking at all the other treats behind the glass, I found myself salivating over bread & butter puddings, Danish pastries, gateaux, and giant meringues. I resisted buying anything, but I don't know how successful I'll be next time.
I then remembered that we had run out of bread, which gave me an excuse to ogle at the offerings at the stall opposite. Bread Ahead sells ciabatta bread, focaccia, amoretti balls, banana bread, ginger loaf, and chocolate slices, but it was the wholemeal sourdough and raisin loaves that got my attention. The lady selling behind the counter was very friendly, and I chatted about how I make my own homemade bread too. She then let me know that as well as the market stall, Bread Ahead has its own bakery shop around the corner. Good to know.
Next door to the bakers was a Greek confectionery giving out free samples of Turkish delight and baklava. I remained a good girl, and didn't go snacking, but I did ask for a few scoops of dried fruit to takeaway. Their dried fruit is £2.40 per 100g, and among the usual apricots, pineapple, and papaya, they had selections that are more difficult to find elsewhere: kiwifruit, melon, razzcherries, etc.
Bianca E Mora
This vegetarian haven was countered by the Bianca E Mora charcuterie, which was selling Italian cheeses, olive oil, cured meats, joints, and slices fresh off the bone.
Just behind them, was Artisan Foods, a German bakery selling whole tarts, cakes, and bread. They also sold individual slices.
Then came the hot street food. Sizzling away on one end was fried plantain, at the other falafel wraps. In between, the good old British Pieminster, with his range of creatively named pies, including Kate & Sidney (steak & kidney), Wild Shroom (wild mushroom), and the Moo Pie (beef & ale).
What usually puts me off about street food is that you have to eat it on the go as there is nowhere to sit down. When there is, it is usually outside, where it can be cold and wet. Borough Market has an undercover eating area with benches surrounded by plant life. It is a very attractive place to sit, and emphasises the use of fresh ingredients. Open Monday-Saturday on Southwark Street, it is open between 10am-5pm most days.