Edinburgh, as I read somewhere (I’ve forgotten where, if I’m honest) the other day, has a ‘thriving market scene’. Farmers’ markets, craft markets, you name it there’s a good chance we have one somewhere. The latest addition to this was the return of the St Mary’s Market, outside St Mary’s Cathedral in the East End. News of this market seemed to feature quite a bit on Twitter last week so a friend (remaining nameless as I forgot to ask if they minded being named) and I thought we’d go check it out.
Quite frankly, I was a bit disappointed, it really didn’t merit any hype. I wouldn’t really even call it a market, more just a handful of stalls selling CDs, vegetables and a couple of things in between. The three of us (I was playing third wheel, with the addition of said aforementioned anonymous friend’s other half) didn’t stay long before deciding to take a stroll through Princess Street Gardens to reach what has spoilt us for farmers’ markets: Edinburgh’s Farmers’ Market, up on Castle Terrace.
I’ve been to this market quite a few times, and when I finally have my own kitchen this place will be my downfall. It’s on every Saturday, and has a whole range of stalls, many of which are seasonal. For a relatively small area there is a lot there — and its popularity seems to be growing, with more people there each time I visit. Yesterday saw stalls selling everything from seafood to jam, organic veg to virtually every type of meat ‘local’ to the UK. This week also saw the addition (at least it’s certainly new to me, and Twitter seemed to suggest its novelty) of ‘The Gardener’s Cottage’, who had a table and chairs out, ready to serve lunch. It looked and smelt delicious. Let’s be honest, the whole market smelt delicious.
My lunch, however, didn’t come from them, much as I tempted. As you can’t come to the market without grabbing your lunch on the hoof, we opted to grab a few things. Courtesy of Puddledub we had Buffalo burgers with cheese, onions and relish – which were mouth-wateringly delicious and I would thoroughly recommend – followed by cakes from Valvona and Crolla, in my case a gigantic raspberry meringue which I would also suggest highly to you. And with full stomachs and emptier wallets we called it a day. Same time next week?