My favourite place to shop in South-East London – Bermondsey
One of the highlights of my week is going to get my vegetables – how sad is that?!! Well, sad but true.
When I moved to Surrey Quays earlier this year, I searched high and low for the freshest vegetable supplier that didn’t cost an arm and a leg. We go through a LOT of veg in our house with juicing and smoothie making so it was up there with one of my first things to look for when I first moved into the area. I stumbled across John & Elena’s Fruit & Veg Company over in Bermondsey and I’m SO glad I did. This post is dedicated to them as I like to share a good thing when I find it and every week when I pay them I visit, I always think I’ve died and gone to heaven! So I hope you get a chance to pop along if it’s local to you and you enjoy the experience as much as I do!
I always say to clients, “if you’re going to make healthy eating a part of your every day life, you need to enjoy it because long term we only do the things we must do or the things we love”. To put this into everyday examples and to illustrate the point, most people work their day job to earn enough pennies to pay their rent or their mortgage because this is a MUST. You clean your teeth routinely twice a day if your teeth are something that are important to you and you wish to keep them. I never see anyone being dragged to yoga or to the cinema. All of these are either musts and/or loves.
Food shopping hasn’t always been fun. I used to go to the likes of Tesco/ Sainsbury’s and Waitrose, and still do on the very odd occasion , but I always resent going as you don’t know where the produce has come from and I want to support local farmers wherever possible as the food always tastes SO much better and is such better quality. Markets also tend to have much more seasonal produce as it’s been brought in locally rather than shipped from afar.
I write my shopping list before I go to John & Elena’s because experience has taught me that I go a bit wild when I step foot in there. That way, I definitely get the bits I need to make all the meals on my menu for the week but I still allow myself to go off piste and get bits that are in season or look particularly scrummy that week. I also force myself (with a massive arm twist) to try something new. This week was Russian kale, last week was crazy purple new potatoes, the week before was bright yellow round courgettes that were flat….most odd but they fascinated me so they went in the basket. I love going home to experiment with the new find and seeing how creative I get…google comes in very handy at this point, especially in the beginning when you don’t know WHAT to do with the thing!
SOME OF MY TIPS:
- Get to the market as early as possible as shelves are full and you get the freshest brightest produce.
- Get experimental and try one new vegetable or fruit every week to broaden your veggie repertoire! Ask John or Elena what they are if you’re unsure. They know everything about the vegetables and tasty ways of preparing them.
- Block out time in your diary to do your market shop every week so it becomes part of your routine. It’s too easy for your diary to get booked up otherwise doing other things.
- Make it into a social event. Personally for me it’s fun by itself but if you want to take a friend with you and then go on to explore Maltby Street Market five minutes down the road to grab a fresh juice or enjoy a falafel box (highly recommended) then do this. There are also other great independent stall holders selling their gorgeous produce like chutneys and olive oil.
Below is the address. It’s tucked under one of the arches in Spa Terminus and open for retail trade on Saturdays from 8am-3pm but it’s best to get there earlier rather than later to get the freshest and bestest produce. During the week John is busy supplying his top quality fruit and veg staples to the local restaurants. In fact, if you have a copy of Jamie Oliver’s latest ‘Save with Jamie’ recipe book you’ll see John’s face in the first chapter as he supplies the local Jamie Oliver restaurants with all their fresh plant produce.
John & Elena Fruit & Veg Company
5 Voyager Estate
South Spa Road/ Rouel Road
Saturday 8am – 3pm
Happy vegetable hunting 🙂 If you stumble across any other London gems that you wish to share then please post below and I would LOVE to check them out. My mission is to share health with as many foodies out there and convert the non-foodies into food experimentalists because once you start, being healthy is so addictive!
All the healthy best,