All Aboard! Fall Fruits & Vegetables & Lineups for Baked Goods & Pork at the Junction Market Train Platform!

Leave a comment

DSCN9903

“Oh my goodness, what in the world are people lining up for??”

I stopped dead in my tracks and gaped incredulously at the crowd of people gathered before me on the sidewalk just up the street.  Was there a sidewalk sale?  No.  Were folks handing out free stuff?  Nope.  Did Hugh Jackman return to TO for post-TIFF shenanigans?  I wish.  No, the line of people spilling out onto the street curb was in fact lining up for bread.  And cinnamon rolls.  And pork.  And croissants.  And pork.  And tacos.

Did I mention pork?

DSCN9859

DSCN9894

DSCN5223

This was the scene before me as I walked into the Junction Market’s brand spankin’ new home on the Junction Train Platform, a hubbub of community activity near and dear to the Junction community’s heart.  And when I say hubbub, I mean HUBBUB.  I was shocked at the sheer volume of market goers milling around every inch of space on the market grounds.  The Train Platform is such a cool space.  There’s train station graffiti art on the brick wall to the west, a raised wooden platform stage and a roof awning over top.  The market vendors were set up in a square shape around the perimeter of the space with more vendors filling in a portion of the centre.  I was surprised I was able to get as many clean shots as I did.  I mean, I know I didn’t arrive right when the market started at 8am (I did due diligence and got there just before 10:30am – give me a break, I live in Markham and wanted the extra hour of sleep!) but my goodness I have never been to a market where I had to strategically figure out how to just get IN.  And I LOVED it.

DSCN9884

DSCN9885

DSCN9873

DSCN9899

The Junction Market had great turnouts at their old location down the road in the Green P parking lot but this was the first market season at the Train Platform and you can tell that the market is just more…alive.  There’s a buzz in the air, the crowd is bigger, and there’s this feeling and sense of community, grassroots, and togetherness.  That we’re all there to pick up delicious food, support our farmers and food producers and to simply be surrounded by people who love market food.

It’s a wonderful feeling and I have missed this so much.  This past summer I really dropped the ball on making visits to the market and I feel like I missed out on so much.  Fall is here though and I am determined to make the most of the season and that means breathing in the beautiful bounty of fresh food all the markets have to offer.  The Junction Market has been one of my favourites since it’s beginnings in 2012.  It may not be the biggest, but by golly do I ever find fantastic stuff whenever I go.  I’ve picked up bunches upon bunches of kale, sprouts, pesto, chutney and baked goods and coming out here gives me the opportunity to explore the west end more which I love.

DSCN9872 - Copy

DSCN9866

DSCN9880

This past Saturday, there were gorgeous bunches of swiss chard, adorable baskets of wild blueberries (they’re so tiny and cute!), pretty plump pears, huge bunches of kale (my go-to market veg!), scotch eggs, empanadas and more from Hogtown Charcuterie, house-cured peameal on a bun, jerk pork, and eleventy billion kinds of ribs from When the Pig Came Home Smokehouse and Larder (gotta love the name!), squash, tomatoes, beans and so much more.  I was so excited and focused on taking photos I backed up and crashed right into a parked bike which left unattractive dusty tire marks on my leggings which I furiously tried to rub off whilst balancing my camera.

Real smooth, Debra.  Real smooth.

Not bad for my first market visit of the 2013 fall season though!  I discovered some yummy new vendors (that peameal on a bun and kale salad will be MINE next time!  Oh, and maybe a scotch egg.  And maybe some tacos too), got to visit them at their new location, and happily walked away with new photos and the beautiful, newest issue of Edible Toronto magazine featuring Sosnicki Organic Farm, a Junction market vendor, on the cover!  This is just the beginning of a scrumptious fall season.

junction market collage

DSCN9860

DSCN9909

*****

The Junction Market takes place Saturdays from 9am-1pm (May 25 to November 9) at the Junction Train Platform at 2960 Dundas Street West by Pacific Ave.  You can follow them on Twitter @JunctionMarket!

Advertisements

Garlic Collard Greens, Sauerkraut, and a Pumpernickel Rye Sandwich Piled High – The Vegan Reuben at Hogtown Vegan!

2 Comments

It’s about time Hogtown Vegan made its appearance here!  I’ve been to Hogtown Vegan a few times since its official opening back in July (I know, I know, what in the world has taken me THIS long to dish out the goods?!) and I’ve been itching to post my photos and my foodie experiences for ages now.  I think you all instinctively know the reason why I haven’t written about them.  It’s the reason for all my “delayed” posts.  That’s right, I have a scrapbook layout in the works and I won’t be able to post photos of the layout until my second Hogtown Vegan post.  Sigh.  At least you all know there will be a follow-up to this delightful vegan diner of food heaven!  And I’m not even making up those words.  They come straight from my friends and other Hogtown Veganites who have proclaimed food ecstacy while eating here.  It’s barely half a year old and it has taken the city, vegetarian and vegan community, and even meat-eating carnis, by storm. 

Hogtown Vegan is the sister restaurant of Kensington Market’s Hot Beans Vegan.  While Hot Beans Vegan serves up vegan Mexican fare in the form of tacos, burritos, nachos, and burrito bowls, Hogtown Vegan takes care of the classic North American diner favourites, nailing comfort foods with a vegan punch.  The name of the establishment is incredibly tongue-in-cheek as it refers to Toronto’s long-standing history as a meat-packing and manfacturing hubbub during the industrial boom.  Thus, the vegan restaurant not only pays homage to its distinct location (you clearly know you’re in the T-dot!), but it also subverts meat and animal eating and turns it on its own head by providing meat and dairy classics without the meat and dairy.

Hogtown Vegan is a vegan diner through and through, churning out beloved diner favourites such as biscuits and gravy, chicken and waffles, mac n’ cheese, po’ boys, and reubens, sans the meat and dairy and with a tip of the hat to Southern style cooking and cuisine.  It’s what I call “naughty vegan food”, food that’s meant to be indulgent.  Their menu boasts appetizers: fries smothered in vegan cheese and cashew sour cream, baked vegan mac n’ cheese with bread crumbs, tofu wings with hot sauce and creamy dill dip; salads: chickpea salad, tortilla salad; sandwiches and burgers: TVP po’ boys, seitan reubens, sweet potato on rye, soy patty burgers with Daiya cheese; and mains: biscuit veggie sausage sliders with fries and gravy, and unchicken and waffles which is comprised of deep-fried soy cutlets sandwiched between waffles and dripping in maple butter.

Continue Reading »