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Stalling it! London’s best market stalls for food on the go

13 May 2015

Londoners often have a favourite weekend market to visit – whether it’s for their weekly supply of cheap fruit and veg in the atmospheric Ridley Road market, or advancing their culinary knowledge shopping in London’s ‘food basket’ Borough Market. Maybe the extent of your interest is grabbing a snack while shopping for antiques and bric-a-brac on Portobello Road or Brick Lane. But where do you find the best breakfast on the go? Which stall is the go to spot for a working lunch or the best late night foodie? London Calling went in search for the perfect street market dish.

East London’s Broadway Market was our first call. The main market spans from the canal to London Fields and hosts a range of traditional stalls including global food, organic vegetables, children’s toys and vintage clothes. Of course it could be renamed Hipster Central and if London hipster-spotting is a hobby, then don’t miss the opportunity to see them here, in their natural habitat, standing in groups admiring each other’s French Bulldogs and measuring each other’s beards! (we may have made that last bit up!) January this year saw a new branch of Victoria Park’s Pavilion bakery open on the street and Broadway also has one of the best stocked fish shops in London Fin and Flounder But the market seemed lacking in breakfast treats and was still only setting up after 9.30am.

Walk towards London Fields end of the main strip and you will find the real gem of Broadway – The School Yard Market. It’s small, but well stocked with exciting new foodie start-ups. Make sure you find the 1960’s converted ambulance which houses Le Swine – purveyors of probably the best bacon butty you will ever eat! Their signature bacon roll is served on a homemade onion and milk bap (even softer than brioche) and the bacon is tender and slathered with sage butter. Truly a show stopper and the clear winner of our best breakfast stall! For those who need a sweet treat in the mornings – another show stopper is Knead – a regular in the market who is a muffin specialist also making a range of specialised nut butters to accompany them (we tried salted caramel peanut butter on hot toasted muffins!).

Walk further on and you will find Netil Market – another incubator style gathering with lots of small shipping containers housing different start-up companies. This market is definitely more suited to late risers who don’t need to eat breakfast before 11am. Mae and Harvey cold pressed juices were there to help with any hangover issues and if you still find yourself waiting for the rest of the market stalls to open – visit Yeast under the arch way. A true East London success story, owner and baker Ben started making croissants in his kitchen – and grew the business to stock all of London with croissants daily. This micro-bakery only opens to the public Saturday mornings so expect a fast moving queue from 9.30am.

Broadway Market – Saturday only http://www.broadwaymarket.co.uk/

With breakfast covered in East London we head South to Maltby Market for our lunch time specials. Maybe you fancy a tipple with your lunch? This is the market to oblige. With the Shellfish and Champagne and beautifully branded, Gin loving pop ups Little Bird side by side, it’s hard to believe these bars only exist on the weekend! (The site is returned to its original use as a timber reclaiming yard for the rest of the week.)

Queues appear very quickly for the stone baked flat bread treats at one end of the market. Vegetarians are served up an array of avocado treats by The Avocado Cafe while meat eaters gravitate to the newly expanded Jewish deli Monty’s for pickles and salt beef rolls.

Maltby Market Saturday and Sunday http://www.maltby.st/

Perhaps the greatest joy of eating in one of the many lively night time street markets is you’re not limited to just one meal from the wide selection of menus! Unlike traditional restaurants, there is an unwritten rule among street food eaters that you can try several different plates from several different continents, all in the same night and still have dessert!

One of the best for comfort, style and food is Night Tales which opened last Christmas in the back yard of the old Foundry building on Old St. Good news then that Summer Tales will launch over the May Bank holiday weekend at the old Red Market site. This is no ordinary street food market with two levels of bars and street food stalls. This year it will house some of the big hitters in the restaurant world including Burger & Lobster and American newcomer Bel Air.

Summer Tales - running every Thursday-Saturday

 

 

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