|baskets of vegetables, Queen's Park Farmers' Market|
We finally made it to the end of the Queen's Park Farmers' Market on Sunday afternoon, buying heirloom cherry tomatoes, greenhouse-grown sweet peppers, red lettuce, rainbow Swiss chard, "salad onions" (better known to Americans as scallions or green onions), organic free-range eggs, courgettes (zucchini), a leek-and-cheese quiche, and an apple cake billed wrongly as a tart.
|table of baked goods: tarts, quiches, etc.|
|baskets of tomatoes|
|tomato table, Queen's Park Farmers' Market|
I chopped and steam-sautéed the Swiss chard that same night, adding a dash of red-wine vinegar, plus salt and pepper, to accompany the reheated quiche, and then we had some of the apple cake with a little ice cream. The British eat their "pudding" (dessert) maybe even more regularly than Coke-and-candy-fed Americans, with all their many baked accompaniments to tea, from jam cakes to scones with jam and clotted cream. I had drastically reduced my sugar intake just prior to coming to London, but it's been hard to stay on track with so many temptations. Good thing I've been walking a lot to help compensate!
|herb rack, Queen's Park Farmers' Market|
My friend also bought a small pot of chives and a golden sage plant to add to her window-ledge garden for £1.50 each. The herb guy had lemon thyme but was sold out of regular English thyme, so we'll just have to return to the market in a couple weeks.* Like my great-aunt Mary (who also, oddly enough, was the only other member of my family who has ever had breast cancer), farmers markets make me ridiculously happy.
*Plants that smell like lemons, like lemon verbena or lemon thyme, always remind me of lemon-scented household cleaners. Instead, I want any lemon flavor in food to come from the essential oils of lemons themselves. But this is a personal preference.