Luna 1878 – Winter Night Market 2014

Luna 1878 - QVM winter night market

Luna 1878 – QVM winter night market

The Wednesday just passed (27th August) concluded Luna 1878, the winter night market held at the Queen Victoria Market. During winter it’s hard to find the motivation to leave your warm heated house but with a range of winter comfort foods on offer it makes it easy to trade your warm blankie in for a night out.

Luna 1878 - Hammer and Tong - Onion Rings

Luna 1878 – Hammer and Tong – Onion Rings

There were lots of amazing foods available but being limited to the space of one stomach, I had to carefully decide which foods I wanted to try. Hammer and Tong had a stall where they were serving duck waffle, onion rings and crispy pork ears. We ordered the onion rings and they were fricken amazing! They were really crunchy on the outside, doughy in the middle and the onion melted in your mouth. They were like little onion ring crispy donuts they were so delicious! The guys at the stand let us try the crispy pork ears, they were little bite-sized pieces, you could eat them like chips. I was hesitant to try them but they were actually yum, they were bacony and a bit like pork crackle but chewier. It would definitely be a good beer snack. Max (the frenchie) would have definitely ordered these if he was here, it’s right up his alley.

Luna 1878 - Rewine - Mulled Wine

Luna 1878 – Rewine – Mulled Wine

I hadn’t tried mulled wine before so I decided to give it a go. Seemed like the perfect beverage for a warm winters night. It was served hot and had an interesting flavour. It sort of tasted like a Christmas pudding liquefied and transformed into a hot drink.

1878 - 400 Gradi - Margherita Pizza

1878 – 400 Gradi – Margherita Pizza

400 Gradi was recently voted the ‘world’s best margherita pizza’ at the pizza world championship. Now that is an impressive title – Best in the world! So on that basis we ordered one of the world-renowned margherita pizzas. It was delicious, the base was light, the sauce was yum, there was a good amount of cheese and the bites with fresh basil were incredibly tasty. Definitely a winner.

Luna 1878 - Mamak - Roti

Luna 1878 – Mamak – Roti

We ordered roti from the Mamak stall. They make the most amazing roti and it’s fun to watch them make it. It is so light and fluffy and you can see why. They stretch the dough out until its paper-thin and then trap large amounts of air inside (they look like little roti parachutes) and then they grill them to get them crispy on the outside. It’s so delicious. The roti canai came with Malaysian curry and a spicy sambal to dip it in which was delish!

Luna 1878 - Spanish Gourmet Caterers - Seafood couscous

Luna 1878 – Spanish Gourmet Caterers – Seafood couscous

At the Spanish Gourmet Caterers stall they had ginormous pans with couscous in a tomato based sauce with big pieces of assorted seafood. It looked fantastic. We ordered a bowl, which had a generous amount calamari, mussels and fish and the couscous soaked up the lovely flavours of the sauce.

Luna 1878 - Hoy Pinoy - Chicken Skewer

Luna 1878 – Hoy Pinoy – Chicken Skewer

We got a chicken skewer from Hoy Pinoy, which was juicy and delicious. They also had a lechon stall where they had meat on the spit roasting. I love lechon (roasted suckling pig) but I don’t know if I like to see five pigs rotating over a fire. For some it can be quite confronting. And it was right next to the vegetarian street food cart. What the? Right next to the vegetarian stall? I found it very odd to have the vegetarian stall positioned next to the spit roasts. Ah wells.

Luna 1878 - The Creme Brulee Cart - Creme Brulee and Cannoli

Luna 1878 – The Creme Brulee Cart – Creme Brulee and Cannoli

From the Crème Brulee Cart we ordered a…yep you guessed it, a crème brulee. It was deliciously creamy and not too eggy, it had a crunchy bruleed top and had a strong vanilla flavour throughout. It was delish! I wanted to buy the whole cart. Also the vanilla cannoli was really good too.

Luna 1878 - Country Delight - Max with the Hungarian Apple and Custard Strudel

Luna 1878 – Country Delight – Max with the Hungarian Apple and Custard Strudel

At this point our stomachs had reached capacity so we bought the homemade authentic Hungarian strudel from Country Delight in a takeaway box to eat later. They had all different flavours like cherry choc and custard, apricot and cream cheese and the timeless favourite, apple and custard. Surprisingly the strudel made it home in one piece. Max didn’t know what a strudel was but he did know that he wanted some.

They also had a Wonderbao stall where you could get warm steamed buns. Perfect for a winters night. Yum! These are absolutely delicious every time. Their baos are always top quality. The Gourmet Soup Factory had a stall too, there was a mountain of bread rolls on the table. They had a variety of hot hearty soups, which were served inside the big crusty buns.

There were so many stalls with lots of yummy food. This was the last market for winter but don’t be sad because the summer night market is just around the corner starting November 5th.

I heart Luna 1878!

Olives x

Luna 1878 
Address: Queen Victoria Market – Corner of Victoria St and Elizabeth St, Melbourne
Event Dates: 9th July – 27th August 2014
Trading Hours: 5pm – 10pm

American Doughnut Kitchen

American Doughnut Kitchen

American Doughnut Kitchen at Queen Victoria Market.

The American Doughnut Kitchen has been around since 1950. That is literally the year my mum was born. These doughnuts are what you call an oldie but a goodie. One traditional family recipe has had people lining up by the many for over half a century and will have people lining up for many more years to come.  These donuts are made fresh in the little van at the Queen Victoria Market (QVM) and they are absolutely delicious.

My american doughnut with its doughnut friends in the background.

My american doughnut with its doughnut friends in the background.

These donuts are not your perfectly round style commercial donughts. Each little doughnut has its own unique shape. The dougnuts are crunchy on the outside and doughy in the middle filled with (burn your mouth) hot raspberry jam, covered in sweet (stick to your lips) sugar. There is something really clean about the oil they are deep-fried in. Every doughnut tastes like it was the first doughnut cooked that day. Personally I feel they have enough jam for my liking but a friend of mine always asks for extra jam and they are happy to accommodate.

American doughnut closeup.

American doughnut Kitchen doughnuts yumm.

Especially on Sundays, there is a very long ant trail of people lining up behind the food truck waiting to get their American doughnut fix. But the line moves at a reasonable speed so you aren’t waiting for too long. You can purchase one for a dollar or you can buy a pack of six for $6 dollars (wait a minute that’s the same price). But in saying that, that is a damn good price and these little guys are worth way more than a dollar, so buying in bulk is definitely the better option. You can easily down a six-pack in one sitting.

American Doughnut Kitchen Food Truck.

American Doughnut Kitchen Food Truck.

It would be rather unfortunate if your American Doughnut hankering occurred on a Monday or a Wednesday because the QVM is closed. But never fear, you can find a comparable jam filled doughnut with a similar level of deliciousness. The doughnuts at Olympic Doughnuts will cure your craving (just outside Footscray station). Plus at Olympic Doughnuts they have a fun jam-filling contraption that looks like a swordfish. The doughnut is impaled by the swordfish’s nose, then the bleeding jam doughnut is thrown upon a bed sugar, to then only be eaten by the next person in line (poor doughnuts).

I heart American Doughnut Kitchen!

Olives x

American Doughnut Kitchen
Address: Queen Street, Queen Victoria Market, Melbourne
Phone: 03 9417 6415 or 0412 224 083
Trading Hours:Tues & Thurs 6am-2pm, Fri 6-5pm, Sat 6-3pm, Sun 6-4pm

American Doughnut Kitchen on Urbanspoon

Cookies and Markets…

Markets have this down-to-earth ambience, where strangers are but friends, live music is for free, fresh produce is available straight from the farm and cookies are baked from the heart. The way the world should be.

In a venture to make some extra cash, my friend and I decided to rent a stall at our local market. I certainly have a new appreciation for market folk. When I initially entered into this enterprise, it seemed like a piece of cake. That, it was not.

After committing to a stall, we started to plan. So came the question, what to sell? Well my friend’s sister is a chef and makes the most scrumptious white chocolate and macadamia cookies on the planet. so we decided to ask her if she could spare a recipe for some market noobs.  Luckily she was kind enough to lend us the recipe (thanks Nicky). So then we got our bake on.

We made slight renditions to the original cookie recipe and created a batch of trial cookies. We picked only the best flavours and agreed on sizes. It was necessary to taste test them frequently to make sure they were perfect. There was often the odd-looking cookie which  needed to be eaten, the marginally cooked one that needed to be eaten, the slightly over cooked one that needed to be eaten. The ones that looked too delicious
that needed to be eaten. They all wanted to be eaten but with great effort we restrained ourselves from eating the warm, chocolate melting, cakey, cookie goodness. It
wasn’t easy.

After eating numerous batches of cookies, we were all cookied out and could begin cooking the cookies for our market stall (oh yea that’s what we were doing). We were
up till 4 in the am baking our little heads off. And then to wake up at 7am to set up shop? What had we gotten ourselves into? We were tired zombies but made it to the market armed with delicious cookies ready to rock ‘n’ roll.

It was fun, it went well, and who knew you could make money just from baking cookies. With a bunch of lovely friends to lend a hand and a sure-fire recipe in our pocket, it was hard not to be a success.
Olives x