What is it about Springvale that I love and why I do tours?
Apart from the people and the hustle and bustle of a busy shopping precinct, its because you can find everything Asian there. So if I’m cooking Asian, I head on down to Springvale (located in Melbourne, Australia).
Whether it be cooked food, raw ingredients, kitchen utensils, hardware, clothes, shoes, just about anything really. The shop owners come from all over in Asia with a strong contingent of Vietnamese and Thai. So how it works is, if you want Vietnamese, you find a shop where the owners are from Vietnam, and they will have everything you need for their cuisine. The same goes for Thai, Cambodian etc. etc. etc. I love it.
I do have my regular haunts, where I have found new friends. Like Jan from the kitchenware store. I know I can buy most of what I need from the Springvale supermarket, but I like to keep the smaller shop owners in the business. After all, I’m a small business owner myself, and I know how hard it can be to compete with the big boys.
So my trips to Springvale include lunch because by the time I have shown you around you will be ravenous. We start off by going through a large fresh food area. I don’t know what everything is, but I have a relatively broad knowledge, so we start with the wall of herbs.
It seems I’m always finding new and intriguing ingredients. Last time Jujubes were in season and one of the lovely customers explained that they’re regarded as extremely healthy.
Check out what Wikipedia has to say about them. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jujube
They taste a little like an apple but are drier in texture. Apparently, they’re extremely good for you. Must get these again. It also looks like we should be able to grow them in our Melbourne climate. I wonder if I can find one in a pot down there….