(my first blog, still in the set up stages. In other words, please excuse all the errors!)
It’s rare for me to go anywhere near a high street on a Saturday. People. Everywhere.
So although the Farmer’s Market in Harborne has been running for some years now, I’d never actually been. It’s not the largest market I’ve ever visited, and was apprehensive as I walked towards it, worried that it would have little to offer. I was wrong. The organisers have obviously got a quality over quantity approach to choosing stall holders.
The first stall that caught my attention was KUSKUS Foods. The food looked bright, vibrant and fresh. It smelt amazing! Mo, who introduced himself as the chef, was so enthusiastic about what he had created, you couldn’t help but want to tuck in. I chose the falafels, cooked fresh that morning, and his ‘raw’ hummous which contains the usual chickpeas but with some secret herbs and spices.
VERDICT: The. Best. Falafels I’ve ever eaten. Full of flavour, moist (what a word) and made with lots of visible ingredients – unlike the sawdust textured versions you usually find in the supermarket. The hummous had a real zing to it, and I loved the chunky texture. I actually had a pot of supermarket own brand hummous in the fridge which I then tasted in comparison, and wow. Worlds apart. My normal hummous tasted flat, bland and disappointingly smooth. I am converted.
Another great find was Quirki Chilli. A beautifully aromatic crushed chilli paste made in my hometown of Sutton Coldfield. Made from three different chilli varieties, from the mild to the super hot, this definitely has a kick! Suggestions on how to use it include as a dip, paste or marinade. I thought it could perhaps be used in place of the usual harrisa paste in one of my favourite recipes. An adapted recipe based on a magazine cutting that my mom passed to me years ago.
The market runs twice a month, every 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month. Details can be found at www.skettsfarmersmarkets.co.uk.