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Covent Garden Real Food Market Stall: Roundup Part 1

Our day at Covent Garden Market last week was so much fun! The other stall holders were friendly and welcoming, and we met some lovely people throughout the day.  It was worth the holiday day, and worth all the trekking. I’ll leave you with a quick roundup and some photos now, and will come back to tell the story properly soon. I will also share the soda bread and cucumber pickle recipe as promised.

I learned a few things last week.

  • Slicing 10 cucumbers by hand is a tedious task. Buy a food processor!
  • 5.30am is very early, especially when you go to bed post pickling and slightly pickled at 1.30am.
  • Don’t sandwich packets of butter between piping hot bread straight from the oven. Should you do this and carry it in a bag on your shoulder, it will leak on your shoes. And on the tube floor. And you may get startled by the sight of the yellow blood on your legs and let loose an expletive in front of some shocked elderly men. Elderly men of Turnpike Lane, I’m sorry!
  • If the market manager says you have the keys for the fridge, it’s likely you do. Don’t tell him 3 times that you don’t, only to discover, when he has given up all hope, that they are in the bottom of your handbag. Sorry Ben!
  • Always prepare for rain, just because you are Irish doesn’t mean you are impermeable (although I should be).

I learned some other things too:

  • There are lots of lovely people in London, and I met a lot of them last Thursday. Thanks for coming by!
  • I love food and I love cooking, but I get so much pleasure from other people enjoying it, much more than what I get from eating it myself.
  • Frank Hederman is a star, and he makes phenomenal produce. Everyone loved it.
  • Another star, Roberto from Bisol represents a fine, fine prosecco, and is great fun to boot.
  • Denise from The Wine Sleuth is a fun stall partner, I haven’t laughed so much in ages.
  • I love markets, and I loved having our little stall. The day flew, so much so, I hardly ate myself! As queen of the snack in the  office, this was quite a shock, for me and everyone who knows me.
  • Sneaky glasses of prosecco over the course of a day can result in spontaneous bouts of singing in the taxi on the way home. And you are the only one that will appreciate it.




  1. So glad to hear it was a success! I am longing for your pickled cucumber recipe, that was amazing. I know it should be a simple thing but I can’t get it right, so come on, share :)

  2. Yeah, and I learned, I shouldn’t wear stripes!!! Looking forward to our next joint venture in the Market. Next time I’ll be in charge of the keys ;-)

  3. Craig Nash says

    Frank Hederman is one of the best products from Cork :-)
    His salmon has to be the best smoked salmon there is!

  4. Samantha says

    Loved loved loved the Salmon as i mentioned already but tell me this… where can i purchase myself some of that lovely jubbly presecco???? Deeeelish!!!!!!

  5. Samantha says

    OH, needless to say, i have looked into Frank’s salmon and am gonna get me a bundle next time i’m in Cork ;) Thanks my dear

  6. All sounds and looks brilliant — I’m so sorry I missed it.

    And winesleuth, I think your stripes look great!

  7. Damn it. I was in London that evening and fully intended to come over for some Irish smoked salmon (and Prosecco) but by the time I built my ark it was after 8.
    Say hello to Denise – hope to see her in Lisbon in October…

  8. Siew Yen Chong says

    Hi ladies
    about to embark on a market stall adventure this Friday….

    tartines, stews and the occasional jelly.

    We’re at Ely’s Yard, by the Old Truman Brewery, Hanbury St from 11am.


  9. Well done again, it looks like you had loads of fun. I’m still gutted I didn’t get to try that salmon! Did you say they sell it in Selfridges?

  10. I was actually there when you rifled through your butter soaked bag in search of keys. Whilst pulling out numerous sets of keys, you clearly missed the only set you actually needed! Lovely Salmon and Prosecco, Mr Hederman, you will be hearing from me again.

  11. Dan Coward says

    Nice work Niamh and Denise. Salmon was amazing. Great to meet tehbus as well. An all-round party in the rain!

  12. It sounds like you guys had excellent fun! I wish I could have made it. Would a mandolin work with cucumber slicing? I used ours for the first time with potatoes and it worked really well after I got the hang of it!

  13. Despite having all that beautiful salmon and delicious prosecco right under their noses, the girls made it through the day! Well done! I’m glad that I made it down.

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Over to you! Your comments - I would love to hear from you :)