One of the benefits (if that's what you want to call it) of being made recently unemployed is not having to request annual leave from your employers, and you can make immediate decisions to go away somewhere for however long you want. Well that's what happened last week, with the roof patch work completed we made an impromptu decision to travel down South to see family, so much apologies to my readers who wondered of my absence.
On Saturday we went to one of U.Ks most famous markets in West London - Portobello Market. Portobello Market goes straight through the centre of Notting Hill. Some of you may have watched the romcom movie Notting Hill which was filmed in and around here. Although an extremely successful movie, it was heavily criticised by local residents for not reflecting the true multi 'ethnic' and cultural diversity of Notting Hill and its roots.
Back to the market, let me tell you, this is one of the busiest markets I have ever been too. I mean after a while, I stopped saying sorry when accidentally bumping into people and took it in my stride of it all being part of the experience. Also it was very difficult to take photographs, pretty much every one had a camera but here are a few snap shots of what caught my eye.
Spinach and Agushi owned by the runners up on BBCs The Restaurant. As well as learning a little about Ghanaian cooking and ingredients, I really admired Adwoa Mensah-Haganhere passion for cooking. Anyway, we bought a small portion of the Spinach with Melon seeds served on a bed of spiced rice to share.
The Spice Shop. I was a rather overwhelmed with the selection of dried chillies and spices stocked here. The next time I come here (and there will be a next time, unless I order online), I will make sure I bring a list with me.
Two Fat Ladies actually once worked there). I was surprised to find Books for Cooks crammed in such a small space. In fact it was so small that people were constantly brushing past you and at one point, I actually knocked a few books off the shelf. You may be surprised to note that I came out empty handed - I'm watching my pounds and pennies you see.
Mama's Jerk Station stall overheard me pointing out to D that they had some vegetarian offerings. The lovely man called us over and offered us a piece of Jerk Veggie Bean Cake and my mother in law Jerk chicken. He told us that the The Jerk Veggie Bean Burgers were made from sweet potato, kidney beans, black eyed peas, coconut, plantain, and Mama's Secret Jerk Marinade. I could taste the shredded coconut. We told him we'd probably get some on the way back, but when we returned instead of getting a Jerk Veggie Burger I opted for the Mama Jerks Veggie and Dumpling Soup - it was substantial, warm, hot and spicy - D declared it 'the best thing we had eaten all day'. I totally agreed.