Welcome to the Food section of the Express. For those of you who read it last year I will be endeavouring to take up the mantle of food editor left by last years sassmaster and chef extraordinaire, Zander. (He’s my brother, if I don’t say nice things he’ll rest pints on my head) Many of the ingredients that’ll be mentioned through the year can be got in like Tesco or Lidl but in Cork there are a number of places that aren’t massive chain stores where you can get food and are probably better value for some things if you have the time to shop around. For those of you who are new to Cork, or who’ve decided over the summer that a diet of noodles and pints is maybe not the best, this will come in handy. For ease I’ll do the same thing that was done last year and give the directions based on closest pub
The English Market
It’s in the middle of town, there’s little alleys that lead into it all over the place including entrances next to Mutton Lane and Voodoo
The English Market is one of the best of its kind in Europe, and it is actually pretty great for students too, not just for the bourgeoisie hipster elite that have taken over farmers markets. I love the vibrancy when you walk in, it’s one of the things that sets Cork up as the real Capital in my mind. It has interesting shops and places to get that little bit of extra tasty stuff when you can afford it, with the Real Olive Co. being a stand-out, but it also holds all your staples at a reasonable price. Indeed, it is probably cheaper to buy any meat here than it is at the supermarket, with some of the butchers offering family packs that will feed you for a week. One of the handy things about most of the stalls being small owner owned businesses is that if you ask them questions, they can generally answer them especially about cooking times and flavour combinations if you’re unsure. Plus, when you have someone over you can talk about going to the market and seem all cultured. Although when you go home to Ballygobackwards and mention it, your family might think you’ve gotten Notions.
The Quay Co-op
They’re across the pedestrian bridge from Deep South and right next to the Flying Enterprise centre, its not that hard to find.
A good supply of dried food in your cupboard comes in handy especially in the winter for soups and what not, plus they don’t go rotten and make your kitchen smell like something crawled in there and died. This is where Quay Co-op comes in handy, they have pretty much everything dried. They’re also great for vegetarians and vegans as that’s who they mainly cater to. They also have some of the more speciality ingredients for that recipe you found on Pinterest that requires Unicorn Horn and Moonlace picked during a solar eclipse.
Jia Jia Market
Across from the Bodega, up the road from Rising Sons
Right, so you don’t want to have Notions or pretend to be “Healthy” You just want noodles, never ending noodles so you can spend the rest of your money on the sesh/coffee. Then this place is for you. If like me and my family you use a lot of spices, and I mean like you put chili flakes in everything or cinnamon is in anything you can find a way to put it in this place is really handy because you can buy spices by the ¼, ½ or full kilo and its much cheaper than any supermarket. It’s also really useful for ingredients for making that really yummy looking food from that anime your friend got you hooked on (Those Pork Cutlet Bowls in “Yuri On Ice!” *drools*) Key warning here though, in this store, green is almost certainly not good. Just don’t touch something that’s packaging is green, its most likely wasabi flavoured and that will kill you because it’s just that insanely spicy.