Since our new home is within walking distance to Melbourne’s famous Victoria Market, Mark and I have now started to do most of our food shopping there instead of the supermarket.
The market is open most days of the week but it really comes alive doing the weekend when it’s at its busiest. The stalls are bursting with fresh produce, the butchers are yelling out their specials, people are lining up for the donuts truck …the whole atmosphere is just very friendly and fun. My favorite section of the market is the ‘Deli Hall’; partly because it has retained many of its gorgeous original art deco features (marbles counter tops, etc) but also because it houses all my favorite products such as cheeses, cured meats, freshly baked bread and every type of dip you could ever imagine.
Last Saturday, I decided to take a full advantage of the deli section and to make a Mezze platter in lieu of lunch. I got a few gourmet dips and some olives from one of the stores and then picked up some roasted red peppers, tabbouleh and pita bread from another. Finally, I spotted these yummy looking dolmades and falafels on my way out and couldn’t resist giving them a try too. The lady told me they were all homemade and well let’s just say I’d love to steal her recipe because they were absolutely delicious!
The platter was great for lunch but I think it’d also be perfect for a party since it’s so easy to put together.
You can really put anything you like on a Mezze platter but if you’re looking for ideas, here are some of my favorite Middle Eastern and Greek specialties:
- haloumi, labneh or feta cheese
- grilled lamb or chicken skewers
- fresh vegetables such as cherry tomatoes, cucumber, carrots…
- grilled eggplant, peppers or zucchini
- dolmades (stuffed wine leaves)
- marinated artichokes
- turkish bread or pita bread
- Dips (I bought Hummus and Baba Ghanoush for this platter but I also love Tzatziki, Spinach, red pesto, tapenade etc)
- Extra virgin Olive oil
What is your favorite thing to put on a food platter? Do you enjoy shopping at farmers markets or do you prefer the peace and quiet of supermarkets?