There’s no better way to start the weekend with a morning trip to the local farmer’s market. Seriously, it gives me that sun is shining, birds are chirping kind of feeling (even when it is grey and the birds are jerks). The closest markets to me happen once a month at the Abbotsford Convent, and once at the Collingwood Childrens’ Farm – both beautiful settings for some early morning wandering and vegetable hunting. Of course, it’s not just vegetables – it’s also where I stock up on choccies! Mmmm.
Obviously all this food gathering is enough to make anybody hungry. Luckily, there’s a few good options within arms reach. Firstly, the Farm Cafe inside the Collingwood Children’s Farm.
The farm cafe is quite vegetarian friendly, and had two notable vegan options – the white baked beans and the super salad. Never one to turn down a super salad (super salad sunday used to be an institution in our house in Tassie), I went for it. The Bear had a dish with creamy polenta, mushrooms, eggs and snow pea tendrils.
It certainly lived up to it’s name. A combination of quinoa, carrot, beetroot, leafies, and herbs topped with a lovely lemony cashew hummus, a good old chunk of avo, pepitas and pomegranate molasses dressing. The beetroot was shredded so thin I couldn’t even taste it (crazy for me), and it was so full of goodies that even the Bear enjoyed it (despite his grudge against quinoa). I loved the sticky, crunchy pepitas and the contrast between the sweet dressing and tangy hummus. A super seriously satisfying start to the day (ha!)
While I think I slightly prefer the Collingwood Farmer’s Market due to the greater number and variety of stalls, it is always lovely to stroll around the grounds of the convent on a sunny morning. Unfortunately on this occasion, it was cold, grey and wet, so we escaped to a dark little corner in the Convent Bakery to grab some brunch. With memories of a delicious vegan arancini, we were disappointed to find it had disappeared from the menu and there were no longer any marked vegan options. Already committed to the idea of brekkie, I went for the standard – smashed avo on toast, while the Bear had fruit salad and yoghurt.
But it hurts my soul to pay $16 for it (especially after removing the goats cheese). This was tasty, on lovely convent bakery-baked sourdough and dotted with cherry tomatoes and basil. But $16….you can get much more elaborate and thoughtful dishes down the road at Admiral Cheng Ho for that much. It kind of bothers me as a vegan at cafes, you can expect to pay $4 for a side of mushrooms, yet no discount for removing eggs or cheese. Le sigh…
Collingwood Children’s Farm
18 Saint Heliers St, Abbotsford
Open 7 days, 9am – 4pm
Open from 8am on market days (2nd Sat of the month)
1 Saint Heliers St, Abbotsford
Open 7 days, 7am – 5pm