Winter at the Market

It’s cold outside … but under the shelter of the Entertainment Quarter canopy, the market is bustling and the stalls are stocked full of winter warmers. We’re rugging up with beautiful, handmade shawls, and warming ourselves with fresh produce, bowls of spiced curry and a donut, or two. Come rain or frosty mornings, we’ll be here with fresh produce, hot food and quality goods from local suppliers. We hope to see you here this month — happy shopping!

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Stallholder in profile: Mistry Kitchen

We’re spoilt for choice when it comes to our hot-food vendors, but during the chill, nothing beats a hearty, spiced vegetable curry.

That’s exactly what Mistry Kitchen’s weekly-changing menu is serving — bowls of warming, fragrant and uplifting curries. Varsha, the chef behind Mistry Kitchen, cooks everything onsite from scratch. “We always have a lentil option, as well as the weekly vegetable curry, plus homemade chutneys and breads too,” she says.

You can also enjoy Mistry Kitchen’s curries from home with their take-home options packed up and ready for heating or freezing. They’re the perfect antidote to the icy prickle and the season of flu that goes with it.

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Stall in profile: Shady Lane

The charming Victoria at Shady Lane is making ethical shopping a breeze with her selection of responsibly-sourced shawls, throws, hats, slippers and umbrellas — exactly what you need to ward off the winter chill.

“There’s so much fast fashion around today, it’s difficult for quality makers to find a market, that’s why we’re here,” says Victoria. “All our products are just one step from the maker.”

The stall stocks a gorgeous array of super soft, merino wool shawls in vibrant colours, produced by textile expert Deborah Emmett using only the finest Australian merino wool. Emmet is passionate about working standards, fair pay and the skills of her craftsmen, something she shares with all the makers Victoria stocks at Shady Lane.

Find Dutch-designed slippers made exclusively by female felt-workers in Nepal, umbrellas in the most divine colour combinations handmade in Kyoto, and an extensive selection of hats. Whatever you’re after, you can rest assured that Shady Lane’s goods have been handcrafted will love and will last a lifetime.

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Stir-fry season

“It’s the season of the stir-fry,” says Simon from Vegie King whose stall is groaning under the weight of Chinese broccoli, eggplant, capsicum, carrots and piles upon piles of fresh green herbs. “Throw whatever veg you have in a pan with a dash of soy sauce and a grating of ginger and you’ve got yourself a healthy, flavour-filled meal in no time.” Best served with a handful of fresh egg or rice noodles, a stir-fry is a nutritious mid-week dinner that even salad shirkers will enjoy.

For a sweeter winter warmer, apples of every stripe are stacking up at the market. “We’ve got Bravos, Fujis, Pink Ladies, Granny Smiths and my favourite, Kanzi apples, which taste like a cross between a Fuji and a Pink Lady. They’re sweet, crispy and tangy,” explains Simon. And for those looking to boost their vitamin C levels — never a bad idea in this chilly weather — Vegie King has Mable oranges and sweet mandarins in abundance.

Cambridge Markets EQ, Wednesdays and Saturdays, 8am-2pm