Clare Tollick takes us on a tasty tour of Sheffield’s unlikely foody paradise, Castle Markets.
Things don’t seem to be getting any easier do they? Everyone’s cutting back; even those who don’t actually need to are at it (maybe they’d feel left out otherwise?). Whatever reason for your cut back, I bet one of the very first things to suffer was the quality of the food you stick into your shopping trolley. ‘Au revoir’ Tesco Finest, ‘eh up’ Netto’s Lamest. But it doesn’t have to be that way. With a little bit of effort and an open mind, you can track down foodie goodies that will both tantalise the taste buds AND look after the pennies.
Here in Sheffield we’re lucky to have Castle Market and if you know Sheffield, you’ll know that this place has caused much debate up and down the city. You’ll also know that there are plans to move it down to the Moor (latest reports say it’ll move in 2013). I’m not going to go into that here however. Right now, we’re all about the food and I want to introduce a few of my favourite stalls to you.
Of course there’s lots of fruit and veg on offer and All Seasons has some of the best quality produce including fresh herbs and some interesting vegetables. If it’s a bargain you’re after, you won’t go wrong with Stuart’s. They often have offers like 4 figs or 10 nectarines for £1 so there’s no excuse for not getting your five a day. For more exotic veg, including a good range of chillies, try Continental Foods.
It’s on the meat and fish stalls that you’ll make the real savings. Not only are the prices cheaper than the supermarket, you’ll get top tips on how to cook anything, including those cheap cuts of meat and ugly looking fish! My favourite butchers is W Bunting & Son. Not only are the guys really friendly and helpful, their produce is spot on. From T-bone steak and lamb cutlets to pigs liver and lambs heart, you’ll find it all here.
For fish, I always head over to Anthony Andrews Fish and Poultry. They often have the likes of squid and mussels along with the usual tuna and salmon. At the moment, my favourite fish is mackerel. It’s darn tasty and just two quid will get you one big enough to feed two adults.
There’s plenty of seafood at Castle Fish where you’ll find whelks, mussels, prawns, cockles as well as some rather tasty roll mops.
Whittingtons is worth a visit; if you ask nicely you can pull up a pew to the counter and order a few oysters for lunch. Who said saving money wasn’t glamorous?!
Head to T Pickles for cheese and other dairy produce and you’ll find a fine array of produce from Yorkshire Tasty to goats cheese and mozzarella. They also have cooked meats and I love the Yorkshire ham; it’s loads cheaper than the supermarket stuff and much better quality.
A few fine food finds, I’m sure you’ll agree but this is just the tip of the iceberg. Get yourself down there to see what else is on offer.