This gorgeous cookbook marries tempting recipes with luscious photos of both the dishes and the market. The recipes are unusual but achievable, and unsurprisingly give star billing to the exceptional ingredients for which the market is famous.
I immediately wanted to make (or more accurately, eat) the barbeced courgettes, burnt lemon and za’atar. Suzanne fancies Autumn Panzanella and Cat would like rhubarb and ricotta on toast. We could all do with a Gooseberry Syrup Gin Cocktail right about now as well.
The book is arranged by season, and includes helpful lists of what’s best at each time of year. It manages to capture some of the sensory delights of the market – Turnips greengrocer Fred Foster writes: “I like to think of our produce displays as live art. They draw people in and provide a backdrop to the Market… The seasons are crucial because ultimately they affect what the displays are made from. As the seasons change, the displays change. It’s continual. You can define the time of year by the colours you see”. (p. 205)
The first mention of the market by London Bridge was in a Norse chronicle in 1014 – a thousand years of tasty snacks, feast preparations, and irresistible tasters.
As London Bridge’s local independent bookshop, we are big fans of our local market and have been known to head over there for emergency baklava to provide instant mood lifts for our hardworking booksellers. For a poetic take on the market, see also Michael Shann’s recent poetry collection To London.