Market Day Recipes from Mary Kemp

PUBLISHED: 17:20 08 June 2015

Fruit and vegetables at Norwich Market

Fruit and vegetables at Norwich Market


Inspired by Norwich Market, our food writer Mary Kemp from East Harling serves up a flavour-packed meal with prime Norfolk ingredients

One of our famous Norwich landmarks is the covered market. Topped by eye-catching stripy awnings, it’s a part of this amazing city we often fly past as we go about our busy lives.

But take the time to wander down the rows - you will find a wonderful hub of incredible food stalls. Fresh bread from Bread Source, herbs and spices from Gareth Butler, The Orient Express Asian minimarket, greengrocers selling fresh fruit and vegetables (often from some of Norfolk’s best producers), butchers with counters full of locally produced meat and, of course, The Cheeseman with an incredible selection of cheeses, to mention just a few outlets. There is so much choice and knowledge to enjoy and share in one place, it makes food shopping an adventure as you find some incredible ingredients and flavours from different culinary worlds to help you plan your summer menus.

Slow-cooked Harissa lamb, stuffed roasted peppers and tzatziki

The lamb

Preheat the oven to 160°C/fan 140°C/gas mark 3

1 shoulder Norfolk lamb

1 jar of harissa paste

4 onions or banana shallots, peeled and quartered

4 fresh fennel bulbs, trimmed and quartered

1 Score the lamb with a sharp knife; I do this in a criss-cross diamond shape pattern. Cover lamb evenly with Harissa paste (a whole shoulder will take four to five tablespoons).

2 Lay meat on top of onion and fennel in a roasting tray and place in preheated oven. Cook for 30 minutes, then generously cover meat with tin foil to prevent the lamb burning. Pour a little water into base of the pan and continue cooking the meat for a good five hours, basting every hour, adding more water if the pan becomes dry. Time cooking of the lamb so it has 20 minutes resting out of the oven before it is served.

Roasted red peppers stuffed with Moroccan couscous salad

For the roasted peppers

4 Romano red peppers

Extra virgin rapeseed oil

Salt and ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/gas mark 6

1 Make a small incision into peppers lengthways of about 5cm to assist cooking.

2 Place peppers on a baking tray, roll them in oil and season with salt and pepper. Place in a preheated oven, or in the Aga roasting oven on the grid shelf on the floor, and cook for 12-15 minutes until just soft, but not coloured. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

Moroccan couscous salad

225g couscous

12 no soak apricots, finely chopped

2 rounded tablespoons sultanas

3 tablespoons olive or rapeseed oil

1 large onion, finely chopped

¼ teaspoon each of paprika, ground cumin, ground ginger and ground cinnamon

A good pinch cayenne pepper

Sea salt

Juice of a lemon

2 tablespoons of mint and parsley, finely chopped

1 Place couscous, chopped apricots and sultanas in heat-proof bowl, cover with 300ml boiling water. Cover bowl with cling film or clean tea-towel and stand for 20 minutes.

2 Heat tablespoon of oil in a pan; add chopped onion and fry until soft and golden brown. Stir in spices and cayenne pepper and cook for a further minute.

3 Add sea salt to couscous and fork through to separate grains. Stir in lemon juice with the rest of oil, followed by spicy onion mixture. Cover and leave to cool.

4 Just before serving, mix in chopped herbs.


Remove seeds from the cooled peppers by inserting a spoon into incision and scraping. Spoon couscous salad mixture into peppers. Serve at room temperature.


1 crisp, fresh cucumber, seeded and chopped into small diced pieces


1-2 garlic cloves, crushed

A dash of white wine vinegar and lemon juice

A large tub of Greek yoghurt

4 tablespoons of double cream

1 heaped tablespoon finely chopped mint

Sugar, ground sea salt and freshly ground pepper

1 Put cucumber into colander or sieve, sprinkle with salt and leave to drain for 30 minutes.

2 Pat cucumber dry and place it in a bowl with garlic, vinegar and lemon juice. Mix in Greek yoghurt and cream followed by mint.

3 Taste and season with salt and pepper; you may also need a little sugar.

Dunked strawberries in mint sugar

For a quick, easy, light desert, whizz a handful of fresh mint with six tablespoons of sugar and serve with a bowl of fresh strawberries. Surprising but delicious!

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