Sunday, October 4, 2009

Noosa Farmer's Markets

I love the Noosa Farmer's Markets. I am at coast every couple of weekends so usually try to go to the markets and bring all my prized produce back in an esky for the coming weeks. The markets are held on Weyba Road at Noosaville every Sunday morning. I do like the West End markets too but somehow Noosa Markets are a cut above. The Noosa markets are set out better, have more specifically regional produce and the vendors seem to be more willing to talk to you about their produce. The vendors appear to specialise in one or two food areas rather than stock a whole load of different things. Noosa is fast becoming a foodie haven and is known as a very food conscious area. The are catering to a very different market to the West End Markets- essentially the Noosa population have money and want to spend it on great local food. The prices are higher, but in this instance, this directly correlates to the quality of the produce.

N.B. I have to apologise for the horrendous quality of the photos in this post. I got too carried away at the markets and didn't take any photos there so had to shoot the ingredients I bought when we got home.

Last Sunday I managed to get to the markets at around 6:45 a.m. (THAT's RIGHT! A.M!) which is a little bit earlier than usual. As devastating as it is to draw yourself from bed on a Sunday morning, it was well worth it. Though the markets were still buzzing, they were not as packed as they are at a later time. Nothing was yet sold out and the vendors seemed to spend more time talking to me about their produce.

Now, in my opinion the markets have something for everyone. I am going to run through a list of some of my favourite items but of course there are so many things I have not had the opportunity to try. These are listed in no particular order!

1.) Noosa Lime Co. make this zesty fresh lime cordial which has a hint of ginger and kaffir lime. Oh My! Lime and ginger can never go wrong in my book and this cordial once again proves that duo are truly lovely together. The cordial tastes of real lime, not the fake limey taste and is just wonderful with soda water or vodka if you are feeling naughty. This is the first time I have seen Noosa Lime Co. at the markets but I am really happy to see some wonderful fresh lime cordial and I hope they keep coming back. I seem to have drawn a blank at remembering what price the cordial was but I think it was around the $6-$8 mark. Apparently Noosa Lime Co are waiting for their finger limes to fruit so I can't wait to see what happens then!

Noosa Lime Co.
P. 61 7 5449 8990

2. Noosa River Smoke House Salmon Gravalax
The salmon gravalax comes in two different fabulous flavours- one is dill based and the other has a peppercorny bite. The salmon is cured using seat salt and brown sugar and is absolutely delicious. The salmon is so tender it is silky, and the taste is fresh. The peppercorns are a flavoursome addition without overpowering the salmon. We ate our gravalax in a fresh baguette from the French stand and some fresh salads and it was the perfect lunch. I know we got about 179 grams for $11.50ish and I would go back and buy a kilo tomorrow if I could. The salmon is vacuumed packed and the expiry date was listed at the end of the month but I'm not sure how many days it would last in the fridge after the package has been opened. the stand also offers hot smoked salmon fillets but I am not sure I could go past the gravalax.

Noosa River Smoke House
Greg Rasmusen
0400 551 378

3) Bendele Farm

Finally- somewhere to buy fresh organic duck!!! To give you an indication of Bendele's popularity- I have been trying to buy duck from the Bendele stand for literally 6 MONTHS and can never secure either the duck breast or a whole duck! FINALLY this week, I was out of bed early enough to grab some. I should have been smart enough to buy about 6 packs and freeze! Rookie error. 2 small duck breasts cost about $7.00 The ducks were killed on Friday so were very fresh!! I can't wait to cook them tomorrow night and will let you know how they go. Perhaps a warm duck breast salad with beetroot and pomegranate!! Yum Yum! Bendele Farm also sell organic chicken and turkey if you are after any other poultry.

Bendele Farm
(07)5484 7157

4) Cedar Street Cheeserie
Now I haven't tried the cedar street cheeserie's buffalo mozzarella but it looks great and I was happy to find some buffalo that was made locally. The vendor was very knowledgeable and happy to share heaps of info. Cedar Street Cheeserie had a ricotta cheesecake for tasting. I have to say it was not the best- esp after eating P.P's cheesecake just a few weeks ago. I am hoping and confident that the buffalo will be much better!

5) The Rolling Dolmade
Oh my gosh- Dolmades are VERY close to my heart. They are one of my oldest favourite foods. I suffered terribly for my love of dolmades and as a result our love affair is much stronger. My Dad used to pack dolmades and olives in my lunch box in kindy and the other kids absolutely picked on me relentlessly because of this! Growing up in northwest NSW meant that most kids in the late 80's early 90's had not even seen or heard of olives or dolmades and hence most thought I was so gross. I was torn between wanting my friends to sit near me at lunch or eating delicious food and of course, in true GG style, the food won out. Eventually my friends got over it and started asking to try it... Anyway... The rolling Dolmade do a rocking dolmade- fresh, crisp vine leaf stuffed with delcious pine nutty, ricey, raisiny goodness. The full flavour burst takes a moment to sink in. In face these dolmades are some of the best dolmades I have EVER eaten. Most importantly fhe leaf and filling aren't squished like in the tinned version. I have never tried any of the other mezze on offer but if they are as good as the dolmades then praise the heavens. The Rolling Dolmade have been around for a while and the locals just love it!
300 gm jar of dolmade = $12.50

6)Gourmet Gallery
Gourmet Gallery are a newish stand at the markets and they have some great ideas. I love being able to purchase some gourmet meats at the market including packs of four different cured meats. Perfect for a pizza making sesh. The lady at the stand was also SO lovely. She took about 5 minutes out explaining the methods they use and listing their product line (which extends to some very delicious fruit cake and )

The lady had no idea that I was a food blogger and sometimes I feel that people fob me off because I am younger but this obviously wasn't the case. She was so conscientious about educating everyone that came to stand. I could see she had a real love for food and was passionate about passing on info. Great to see!

We tasted the fruit cake ($12 for 300 gm or $34 for 1kg) which I will consider If I am feeling lazy around Christmas time, the bacon steaks and some of the cured meats. My main PIE loved the chocolate dolce forte which was made with rich cocoa ($12 for 300 gm)

We ended up going home with the four pack of cured meats or antipasto selection (140 gm for $7.50) and some ham off the bone ( 140-180 gm = $6.50). Next time I will probably grab some of the ham done with herbs and garlic!!!( $6 for 300 gm) This stall is well worth a visit if only to learn a little more about how cured meats are made.

Gallery Gourmet
Helen Jones

Notable mentions:

Spanner Crab Noosa Stand-
Crab and scallops from the Spanner Crab Stand are always beautiful. You can get either fresh or frozen scallops and they are in peak condition (not water soaked.) The crab meat is also fresh and sweet and the prices are good.

Chocolate stand - sells (among various other chocolate treats and cooking chocolates) goji berries covered in dark chocolate. My mouth waters just thinking about these delicious little treats which are a little bit unusual. They are pricey but well worth it. I feel that the goodness of the goji berries coupled with the well documented goodness of dark choc is a real hit!

Okonomiyaki Stand- Obviously I am obsessed with Okonomiyaki and this is where I first fell in love. The stand here does fish shaped pancakes that are admittedly not as good as the West End markets okonomiyaki but still give them a run for their money. Yum Yum on an empty Sunday tum.

French Stand has some delicious baguettes that are always beautiful and fresh. They also do a variety of pate that is in hot demand and some french favourites such as decadent chocolate croissants.

Supernatural Organics- Do some great Australian garlic. I have recently been reading about the benefits associated with Australian garlic as opposed to the bleached asian garlic you generally find in woolies. Seriously- get yourself some garlic that has some colour left. This means that meaning of the healing properties and nutritional benefits are still in tact rather than being bleached out. The flavour is much more intense than the asian variety too.

Traditions do breakfast but I go there for the homemade lemonade which is fab. They make it just the way it should be- lemony, sweet and chilled- perfect for a hot summer's day.

Do you have a favourite stand at The Noosa Farmer's Markets? Let me know~!

2 fabulous comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi there Gastronomy Gal, thanks for the great mention of Noosa Lime Co. it's our first official mention of Lime Cordial for Lime Lovers on the internet - so glad you enjoyed it! Keep checking out our website for distributors in Brisbane! Scott, Noosa Lime Co.

Kitchen Seductress said...

Greetings from a fellow south east queensland foodie blogger... I love your blog. Going to have a further look around...

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