I love markets.
In this case, its one that has been around since 1014…or probably even earlier.
Fresh food and produce, all colourful and all looking delicious and nutritious.
Walking through Borough market was painful as well as exciting. All the foodstuff that comes fresh and cheap here (1 POUND FOR A BOX. A BOX OF STRAWBERRIES. TMD. HAVE YOU SEEN HOW MUCH A BOX OF STRAWBERRIES COST IN COLD STORAGE??), we couldn’t buy home to cook with- much less have the time to enjoy exploring the ingredients this part of the world had to offer.
Andand a scene you don’t get to see in Singaporean markets: cakes and pastry stalls. Freshly baked tarts. Ahhhhhhhhh.
Expensive by our standards lah, but everything looked so good.
Our first stop was a stall named Le Marché du Quartier selling Duck Confit wraps. Sizzling on the huge hot plate/table (think Teppanyaki) was shredded duck meat coated with a sheen of oil, just enough to make it go crispy. The meat at the bottom crackled and popped as the guy behind the counter tended to the customer in front of us.
14 SGD (i think) for a wrap almost as big as my arm. For one person, this is a meal on its own.
I’d daresay its one of the best wraps I’ve ever eaten. If you love duck, this is it.
While we took turns ravishing the poor wrap, we entered the section of the market that sold ready-to-eat food. Food stalls lined the walls and the crowd was machiam peak period at a Pasar Malam.
In the middle of the chaos that are humans, I spot a stall selling Singaporean dishes. One of which was laksa. #proudSGmoment
Moving on, our second snack of the day was also a wiener.
SAUSAGE WITH SAUERKRAUT. The shredded pickled cabbage is the answer to the jelat-ness* you’d get from eating a hotdog with only ketchup and/or chilli sauce (mustard’s not common in SG). It kept everything light despite the meatiness from the sausage. But since sauerkraut is probably hard to come by in SG, our next best thing is kimchi from the Korean section in supermarkets.
Someone try it and let me know HAHA.
After the meat fest, I caved and bought a bubble-tea sized cup of uber-red cherries. Ahh, dessert.
As we popped cherries (heh) into our tummies, the strong aroma that is coffee wafted across the street to us.
‘Ooooh, that smells really good.’
Having just exited my full-time internship where a daily cup of teh C siew dai* has become a necessity more than a habit, I craved caffeine at that very moment. Europe does their coffee differently. Condensed milk is unheard of. What more evaporated milk.
I’m a tad jet-lagged with 2-plus weeks of non-stop activities ahead of me.
So I crossed the street and got in the queue.
Almost every drink on the menu had the term ‘espresso’ in it.
They had a latte but my adventurous spirit screamed, ‘TRY SOMETHING ELSE LAH.’
Thus, I got an espresso macchiato.
Simply because, uncultured me thought that macchiato was like Starbuck’s caramel macchiato with the pretty separation of milk and coffee. Or like Koi’s Oolong macchiato. So probably a normal-sized cup of milk with a pretty layer of espresso on it.
I hated myself when the lady passed me an espresso-sized paper cup with a pretty milk heart on it.
It’s a cup of espresso with milk floating on the top.
To be fair, the aroma of the coffee was sublime, to the point where I was wishing that I could drink my coffee and tea kosong*. But my sweet tooth struggled and died trying to finish the cup.
In desperation, I asked YJ (who is lactose intolerant and sensitive to caffeine) to help with a few sips.
To which he exclaimed, ‘You want me die ah??’
*Jelat (Ger-LAHt): the sick/full feeling you get when you’ve had too much mac & cheese
Teh C Siew Dai: tea (teh) with (C)arnation (evaporated milk brand), less sugar (siew dai)
Kosong: Empty or zero; in this context it means no sugar (for beverages)
I’d strongly recommend foodies to explore the different stores and stalls as they have really high quality and interesting ingredients. There’s stuff like raclette cheese and spices, oysters and local produce that you’ll not find in Asia.
And if your itinerary allows, grab some food/fruits as snacks for the rest of your travels! They’re pretty affordable (especially fruits) and its healthier than chips 🙂
Also, if you’re in the mood for summer cocktails, they’ve got sangrias, proseccos, etc.
But of course, STAY HYDRATED. Please bring water.