London: Camden Market

On Sunday, we made a trek down to the Camden Markets. A co-worker of mine, who worked in the UK for ten years told me about it, and showed me a few photos of when he was last down here. He showed me some of the funny T-shirts that some of the stalls were selling, and that was the part that drew me to it the most. I looked it up on Google and they said there were also food stalls there, so I figured it might be something like those markets we have that run once a week during the Summer months, where you would have lots of different foods to try.

It took us a while to find the market, as I was convinced we could just walk there from King’s Cross Station (another location ticked off my Monopoly streets list, and also where platform 9 3/4, of Harry Potter fame, happens to be (though the line for that was incredibly long, so I thought we’d try again on our way to Paris (as the train station for the Eurostar train (St Pancras International) happens to be right next door))). Technically, I was correct. In actuality, we got so very lost, that we ended up having to double back to King’s Cross Station and catching the tube to Camden Town. It didn’t look too crowded, but there were tons of stalls selling funny T-shirts and other clothes. In fact, I think the Camden Market part of the market was just rows and rows of clothing stores. Since MrFodder and I tried to walk there, we were starving by the time we actually got there, but I didn’t want to eat at KFC (miracle, I know), or any of the restaurants on the road, as I wanted to try these famous food stalls.

We saw some boys running around with containers of some sort of fried ball thing, so we followed the smell to an Asian food stall, where we were given a sample of “Bang bang chicken”. It smelled good, tasted good, but more importantly, it was food. So we bought a large container of it (half of which was filled with mediocre fried rice) and chowed down.

Big mistake. If you ever make your way to Camden Town for the market, and you’re feeling hungry, power on.

Here’s why: There are actually three sections of the market, and we had only stumbled upon the first. The second part, Camden Lock Market, is where all the food stalls are. I’m not kidding, here are a few photos – try not to look at this while hungry. Each of these is a stall, and that isn’t even all of them, there was another path lined with more stalls.

As we passed food stall after food stall, we were filled with so much regret. The Bang bang chicken wasn’t bad, but there were so many delicious smells wafting around. Every corner we turned was another piece of regret.

Mexican food.

Wood-fired pizza.

Practically every doughnut you can imagine.

Jamaican jerk.

We ended up getting a churro and a choc banana boat for dessert, but the smells were just intoxicating. We returned to the market again today, but some of the stalls weren’t there, including the doughnut one.

I settled for paella.

MrFodder got a sticky pork bun.

I don’t think we even bought any T-shirts or knick-knacks from the market, we went twice just for the food. And unlike the night markets we have back home, there weren’t massive lines for food. Even on Sunday, which is so busy that they make the nearby station one-way (i.e. you can only get off there, you can’t get on the train), because the foot traffic is incredibly. Finding a table is pretty much impossible though, so you really need to be able to hold and eat whatever you decide to buy.

I made the rookie mistake of having eyes bigger than my stomach, and couldn’t turn down buying a shredded duck wrap with plum sauce, even though I already had a plate of paella in one hand.

(Here’s half of one, he cut it in half for us so that we could share it.)

Was definitely worth it though, even if it meant MrFodder and I had to slowly waddle home.

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