SHOPPING AT A MARKET FEELS MORE LIKE A HOLIDAY … CAREFREE, WITH FEWER RULES AND WARM, FUN INTERACTION WITH THE VENDORS. AND THE FOOD? WELL, WE HAVE TO EAT, AND THESE MARKETS OFFER UP SOMETHING SPECIAL, MADE WITH LOVE AND PASSION. TASTE WHAT WE TASTED, WRITES ANNE SCHAUFFER
It’s one thing going retail at a market, another thing entirely feasting on something decadent or even healthy, on site or to take home. The wonderful thing is that market vendors produce wares they’ve made themselves, so they source the ingredients, know how and where the food was prepared, and whether you’re vegetarian or vegan, like sweet or savoury, there’s always someone to walk and talk you through your choice.
North, south, east and west of Durban, we popped into a few markets and put a mouthful of their foodstuffs to the taste. Yum.
THE IHEART MARKET’S new venue at the Haystore, Albert Terrace/Camperdown Road, at the Point, takes place on the first Saturday of the month.
- Any reason not to have an ice-cream before breakfast? None I could think of. Edward Papaphotis of Momenti Gelato learnt the old-school, traditional Italian way of making handcrafted Gelato and Sorbetto in Bologna, Italy. Only the best natural ingredients, free of preservatives and artificial anything, less sugar and fat, and new flavours added weekly – like Turkish Delight, Pistachio Brittle and Candied Orange, Don Juan (caramelised almond), and Olive Oil and Sea Salt. All sorbets are vegan, with no animal by-products, and seasonal fresh fruits sourced locally. They also conjure up a Dark Belgian Chocolate sorbet. Sublime.
- Durbanite Aaliya Randeree lives in Dubai but owns her own business here, Butterworks. She bakes from her Durban kitchen – with support from mum, sisters and aunts – and all breads and pastries are sourdough based and made with wholesome ingredients. The tough toss-up was between the almond croissant and a Mini Beetroot and Potato pizza, so I chose both …
- Melissa Wijnberg is Loophole Flatbread. She makes all toppings and bread at home, grows her own herbs for the sauces, and the olive oil originates from her parents-in-law’s olive trees in Prince Albert. Choose between a base of babaganoosh topped with fresh baby rocket, grilled lemon and herb chicken, finished off with a fresh herb and yoghurt dressing, or a base of Neapolitana sauce topped with fresh baby rocket and smoked beef, finished off with Parmesan cheese shavings and balsamic reduction. For vegetarians, she usually replaces the meat with a Mediterranean mix of chickpeas and something delectable like roasted peppers, artichokes, olives, roasted seasonal veg. They are winners!
THE WONDER MARKET runs the last Sunday of the month, from 9am to 2pm, at Century Boulevard, Chris Saunders Park.
- Rum Dotan-Love is Chef Rum, and his main focus is Arabic-Israeli falafel. Different from the standard falafel, they’re extremely rich in herbs, so the inside is very green, moist and oh-so-tasty. He also makes roti wraps, and some delectable salads. His food is all vegan, all preservative and gluten free.
- Nikkisha Pillay started Spaghetti & Ciao as a hobby: “I love to cook, and pasta is one of my favourite dishes to eat and make.” Her Fettucine Alfredo is probably the favourite on her menu, as this home-made pasta is spun around in a Parmesan wheel.
- Café Turka’s Murat Oncel emigrated from Turkey three years ago, where he owned a restaurant in Marmaris, southern Turkey. His speciality is lamb doner kebab, a type of Turkish kebab, made of meat (lamb, chicken or beef) marinated, seasoned and slow cooked on the rotisserie, then sliced and served with fresh salad, dips (hummus and Turkish garlic sauce) in a pita or wrap. They currently do lamb and chicken doner kebabs as well as falafel wraps.
THE VEGAN MARKET takes place every second month on the second Saturday of the month, same venue as Golden Hours.
- Seth Phillips from The Vegan Kitchen bakes and makes milk tarts, brownies, cupcakes, carrot cake, and peanut butter fudge. No matter how much fudge is made for however many markets … he returns home empty-handed.
- Sisters Sheena Ramkissoon and Anika Ramkalawan own Buttercup Vegetarian & Vegan Cafe, and they make – wait for it – a delectable, even revolutionary KFV. A vegan equivalent of KFC … and veganites can’t get enough of them.
THE GOLDEN HOURS FAMILY MARKET runs every Sunday 10am to 3pm, on the corner of Uitsig Road and Radar Drive, Durban North.
- Hannelie Taylor and her grandson run the Vetkoek Shack. If you’re not there early, her freshly cooked vetkoek, served with curry or savoury mince, cheese, syrup, jam, cheese and jam … are gone.
- Fadeela and Zaid Fridie are Taste of the Cape, making traditional Cape Malay koeksusters (mix
of sweet and spicy, with aniseed, ginger powder, cinnamon), Bolas (a round cake made from cardamom, deep fried, rolled in syrup and sprinkled with coconut), and Gatsbys (a gigantic roll, filled with lamb/chicken/fried polony, with loads of spicy chips, sauce and salad).
THE LITCHI ORCHARD MAKERS’ MARKET happens the second Saturday of each month, at Seaforth Avenue, Salt Rock.
- One of the great hits is rabbit food. Misumuzi Manzini farms rabbits, and is the director of Mangiamo. He serves up an increasingly popular flame-grilled rabbit on flatbread. Low in fat with the highest content of protein and zinc of all meats, rabbits are also free of hormones and steroids. Try it – you’ll be a convert.
THE SHONGWENI FARMERS AND CRAFT MARKET, every Saturday, 6.30am to 11.30am, at Lot 457, Shongweni.
- Fournaki, food made the Greek way, and served up by Maria Moutzouris. The menu is extensive, but her fourth generation recipe for pita bread, cooked right there with lamb, gammon or chicken, with fresh salad and tzatziki, will drive you crazy. And to tip you over the edge, her moist carrot cake with more pecans than you can handle, or delicious baklava is the perfect sweet treat. Irresistible.
- S Eisbein is Sandi Robberts, who serves up a range of precooked pork goodies, from spare ribs, eisbein and pork crackling to uncooked heavenly flavoured sausages to take home – Country Herb and Feta, Sweet Chilli and Cheese, Honey Mustard, Chipotle and Feta, Cheese, and plain. Banters eat ’em on a stick.