In between running a restaurant, preparing a range of frozen meals and curry pastes, making media appearances and writing various blogs, the amazing Jackie M finds time to feed the crowds every Saturday at her Orange Grove Markets stall at Leichhardt in Sydney.
I had read and heard many good things about Jackie's cooking, particularly her Char Kway Teow and Roti. A container of Jackie's freshly made Roti Kaya (Roti with Coconut and Pandan Jam) disappeared before I had the chance to photograph it for this snippet. Indeed, it was so delicious, Peter and I couldn't help but tuck in immediately.
If you can't make it to Leichhardt, Jackie's food is also available from The Happy Hawker stalls at the Concord Hospital Market, Marrickville Markets and Hornsby-Kurringai Hospital Markets. Jackie's restaurant is at 85 Majors Bay Road, Concord and is open from 5.00-10.00pm Thursday to Saturday. Bear in mind that reservations are limited!
Alongside hand-made, organically tinted 'Warp and Weft' products from Peru, Mat Campbell is now selling his first commercial crop of organic garlic.
Mat grows three varieties of garlic (hard neck, soft neck and Russian) on a small sustainable farm at Robertson in NSW and has recently received organic certification.
I spoke with Mat at his stall at the Orange Grove Farmer's Markets in Leichhardt. He explained the background to Warp and Weft and how he and partner, Harriet, had travelled through South America and, upon returning home, were inspired to establish an ethical business practising principles of Fair Trade.
You will find Mat and his Green Heart Organic Garlic at the Orange Grove Farmer's Markets in Leichhardt on Saturdays. Closer to home, Warp and Weft will be trading at the National Folk Festival over Easter.
There is quite a team of skilled (and happy) cooks working on the Turkish Gozleme stall at the Orange Grove Farmer's Markets in Leichhardt.
Working quickly and with fresh ingredients, we watched as the maker stretched out the dough for the flat bread and laid it down flat on the work bench. Then fresh spinach and cheese was piled on top, before the dough was folded and shaped, ready for the grill.
Delicious! The queue of people waiting to buy Gozleme proved its popularity.
'I guarantee this will be the best chevre you've ever tasted', my Orange Grove Farmer's Markets tour guide and twitter friend, Karen Lateo, announced as she introduced me to Glenn Barringham and the Willowbrae Chevre Cheese stall. One nibble of the fresh curd and Peter and I were immediately nodding in agreement. Definitely 'nom nom', in fact absolutely DIVINE, and a very good indication of the cheesemaker's skill and commitment to producing finest quality cheese. Willowbrae Chevre cheese maker, Karen Borg, creates artisan, award-winning chevre at her farm, which is situated in the foothills of the Hawkesbury Valley. The range includes fresh cheese made with salt; lightly salted fresh curd; sun-dried tomato and dill covered fresh curd roll; curd cheese filled with green peppercorns finished with a lemon pepper crust; Kalamata olive covered fresh curd; two week old mould ripened cheese; marinated fetta; marinated chevre' goats milk yoghurt and mature goat and curd cheese. Visit the Willowbrae stall at the Orange Grove Farmer's Markets in Leichhardt and Frenchs Forest Organic Market.
One of the delicious and more colourful surprises at the Orange Grove Markets in Leichhardt is The Middle Eastern Kitchen, where you will find chef and cookery author, Rachel Grisewood, preparing delicious exotic offerings for her hoard of followers. Grisewood is the founder and CEO of Manna from Heaven and the Sydney Biscuit Company (1993-2010) and author of the award winning Manna from Heaven: Cooking for the People You Love (Allen and Unwin). She is currently busy setting up a new, boutique publishing company and writing her second book, Heaven on Earth, which documents her journey around the Mediterranean. The menu at Rachel's Middle Eastern Kitchen stall offers snacks and entrees (such as filo pastry cigars stuffed with rice, preserved lemon and 'all things nice'); mains, including slow cooked lamb shoulder with apricots, cinnamon and almonds; sweet things like orange flower water, pistachio and yoghurt cheesecakes. There are also condiments: harissa, preserved lemons, dukkah and much more.
Farmers and growers, artisan producers, and wonderful providores.