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Nice Birdie - You Play Golf Leave The Rest to Us

"Today I have mostly bin eatin'..."

Sandro's day out in Bolton

This weekend, I had to go into Bolton for the first time in years - I had to go there because my insurance company say they will only pay for a new windscreen if I use their tame company - which has the choice of workshops in Bolton, or Siberia.

Now, I remembered that I had enjoyed going to Bolton because of Bharti Spices - as far as I could tell, one of the major suppliers of eastern comestibles for the area. There's another outfit across the road - a "Cash and Carry" type of place - I'll get the details later.

Unfortnately, the time I needed to be in Bolton meant I was cruising past Bharti before they opened :-(

Never mind, we had a couple of hours to kill after I dropped the car of..."got to wait for the gunk to set, Guv", so we trolled around the town centre, which was average, but then ended up in the Market.

Now, I don't do a lot of shopping, mainly because I have the choice of Asda or Sainsbury, neither of which inspire, so it came as a pleasant surprise to see a real market, with fresh produce. I saw things in there that I thought I'd never see in this area - Live Crabs, Roach, Bombay Duck, Goose Eggs of several sizes, Duck Eggs, Quails eggs (OK, not so rare these days - but theses *weren't* bubble wrapped!!). Aubergines which had perfectly coloured, taut skins. Yard long Salmon on opposite stalls, with the stallholders outbidding each other - "how about eight quid" - and they were fresh! I looked in Sainsburys over the bank holiday weekend - a couple in at, well the price was so high I didn't even commit it to memory.

As a result of this trip, my Sunday Breakfast of Bacon and Eggs took on a new meaning - those Goose eggs are *big*!!! - Unfortunately, when my wife said she'd put a hard boiled egg in my lunchpack on the Monday - she meant a Quail's egg! (By the way - the bacon came from Charles Pearmain - The Real Food Club). See our section on Meat & Poultry Suppliers as well.

How come Bolton can support such a market, where (from not so recent memory) Warrington and Wigan can't? Is it to do with the larger Eastern population? I did try to find my way around Bradford once a couple of years ago, but my memories of the market I came across there aren't, er, memorable.

If you know of a local market which can boast the type of good produce I'm talking about here, let us know - If you don't, then give Bolton a try. If you do - let us know what you think - if you agree with me, we might even publish your views :)

Sandro

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