Getting Healthy at the Markets with Stefano Pellegrini
Everybody loves to get preachy about it, but being amongst the jovial crate-hurling, produce-stacking, back-slapping, fresh air camaraderie of a market feels like a ridiculously healthy thing to do. There’s no reason then, to go and ruin the experience with a gozleme the size of a doona that will only end up sending you and your market-purchased vintage palm tree-printed shirt under the nearest tree to recuperate and contemplate which of the two was the bigger mistake.
Bad vintage purchases at markets are inevitable but if Stefano Pellegrini of Stefano’s Kitchen is there, there is no excuse for a bad lunch. Stefano proves that you can take the man out of Italy but you can’t take Italy out of the man. Within 2 minutes of arriving at his stall I’m offered a cacao health ball (excellent) and I’m hearing about the one passion that has survived relocation across three countries, numerous careers and fierce competition with his love of vinyl: food.
Stefano doesn’t ‘love’ food in the blog-following, cookbook-collecting, Saturday-morning-eggs benedict-instagram-snapping way. Stefano and food go way back to his childhood in Italy. They have grown up into a romance where, together with his wife, he marries the best of chemical free, organic and free-range produce with his healthy cooking philosophy. His market stall is bright with piles of pearly quinoa salads, gem-hued veggies, sunny, vegetable-studded frittatas, takeaway soups and breakfasts as well as those mighty tasty cacao balls. If you still haven’t dipped a toe in the rising tide of quinoa that’s washing over Sydney at the moment, the part precooked bags of the little wonder grain he also sells are an ideal first step.
If gozleme equals coma at the markets, banana bread and tandoori wraps are the equivalent fare that’s dragging you into 3.30pm lala land at work. Never fear, Stefano does corporate catering too. So you can send this link to admin, or if you’re it, give him a call and keep em’ rollin’ all day with health balls and quinoa instead.
Thursday/Friday - Bondi Junction Village Markets
Sunday - Marrickville Markets
Website - http://homemade-dinners.com
By Christina Gee
Photography by Valeria Maltseva