So I've been trying to make it a habit, as I've likely mentioned before, that whenever I do need to go grocery shopping I will instead deter my shopping to the local farmer's market in Ealing that happens every Saturday morning. This farmer's market is pretty small, only a small cordoned section of a street, about 10-15 minutes walk from my apartment.
I do my best to prepare for this by bringing a completely empty backpack and a net bag and scheduling ahead of time so I don't oversleep or in most cases, overclean my way through the time the market runs, which is 9am-1pm. Yes, overclean. I get weird cases of OCD cleaning Saturday mornings after realizing I've been letting my house go to pot all week after working long hours and coming home from the gym really late. Needless to say there's usually dirty dishes piled up, clean dishes that need to be put away, clean laundry that needs to be folded and other various things that need to be stashed, cleaned, or otherwise done. It's an obsessive thing. Good ritual to get into though - Saturday morning clean ups. The only bad thing is when it prevents me from getting food, which I still only do on a 2-3 week basis anyway. Bah.
Anyway, so I usually step out of my door with scheduled pride around 11am (yes, it's true, I don't go there at the crack of 9am because cleaning has prevented me from doing so) and walk down there around 11:15am. I then scan all of the stands and make my purchases. I now have a pretty good idea of who is there weekly and can now make a pretty good list of what I'd like to get there every time, despite only being there three times (twice for purchases). Amazing.
This time though I noticed with special care that there is a man who sells local, organic non-GM-fed meats. This man will be my dietary savior. Previously I bought some amazing local sausage from the pork man (who is friendly and great and I look forward to continue giving him business but I really did not like the idea of surviving on pork sausages as my protein source, other than the occasional homemade hummus). Finding out this man existed gave me such joy it is indescribable. The only thing he needed in his sign was "free range" and I would have been in love.
He explained to me that he feeds his animals non-GM British-grown corn (that's as good as it's going to get in this day and age, unless I want to go extreme) and he had quite a variety of meats: lamb, chicken, beef, and even some different things: sausages of various kinds (weiss wurst, chorizos, different types of brats) and I believe he even had rabbit the other week though I can't be certain. There is a wild game meat seller a stall down from him so I'm not too worried. And also a local seafood seller in the stall next to him. I think I'm pretty well-covered in this department.
This time I decided on mince lamb. I was going cheap and wanted to test out his product. I was really tempted to buy the steak he had out because they looked amazing but eh, wasn't willing to spend the 15pounds it would have likely cost me to get the amount I would have wanted. Not yet.
Btw he also gives discounts when you buy more meat at once. He rounds down to the nearest pound or five-pound denomination in order to give you sweet reductions for buying more. This man is my hero. Protein hero.
I then went down the street (a few storefronts down, really) and bought some tomato sauce and pasta and some other wanted ingredients that I can't get at the farmer's market (nuts, canned beans for my continued obsession with homemade hummus and bean dips for my raw veggies), some other random stuff. Then hurried home and immediately made lamb spaghetti.
I ate more than half of it the entire weekend. It was heaven, absolute heaven.
And so this man, with his local organic non-GM fed meats, is my saint. I so look forward to exploring more of his goods in the coming months of my living in Ealing. So tasty in my mouf.