Reading Terminal Market

Reading Terminal Market


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Market Blog

A blog about what's happening at Reading Terminal Market.
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Insider's Shopping Guide Now Available!

We have put together a short guide that shares insider tips and services provided my the merchants of Reading Terminal Market that you may have not previously known exist. Did you know that you can purchase dry ice from Bassetts Ice Cream, or that Valley Shepard Creamery can put together a small curated cheese box for you? Get these and many more tips within the new guide! 

 
Grab one at the Recipe Card Rack (next to Philbert the Pig) or at the Welcome Center to learn how to make your Reading Terminal Market experience exceptional!

Click on the image below to download a copy of the guide
 
 
Insiders Shopping Guide cover
 
 
 
 
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“Celebrating Cinco de Mayo with 12th Street Cantina, the Market’s Original Mexican Food Stand,” By Carolyn Wyman

ambosandspicychickensalad

When 12th Street Cantina opened in 1982, it was the first and only Mexican stand in Reading Terminal Market and also one of the first and only Mexican restaurants in the whole city.

 

At that time Mexican food was so rare in cheesesteak-land that owner David Fetkewicz simultaneously started a Cantina wholesale Mexican foods importing business, in part to supply his stand.

 

As the Mexican holiday Cinco de Mayo 2017 fast approaches, there are a plethora of Mexican food options around town, including national chains like Chipotle and Qdoba. But few are as fresh, fast and affordable or offer the range of options as 12th Street. (On May 5, these options will include a special short rib taco special and complimentary cactus pear punch.)

 

Stand founder Fetkewicz had prior restaurant experience in Colorado but his wife, Michele Leff, had earned an MBA with the idea of becoming a business consultant until one day Fetkewicz burnt his hand while making caramel for flan and Leff jumped behind the stand. That was the start of a culinary adventure that has grown and expanded into a high-volume, off-premises catering and a corporate café management business. But almost everything sold at the stand is still made fresh in Reading Terminal Market, says 12th Street executive chef Jon Jividen.

 

The pulled pork on their taco bar is seasoned with onion, whole chipotle chiles, garlic, bay leaf and a blend of Mexican seasonings and cooked for five hours (rather than pulled out of the freezer and defrosted as it might be at a national chain). The chicken is breast meat marinated in achiote paste and other spices and then baked.

 

“Because we make everything right here, we know what’s in our dishes,” says stand manager George Ambos. As a result, vegans and celiac-sufferers can dine here without fear: Most dishes are gluten-free and can be made vegan simply by asking stand workers to hold the cheese.

 

“People who have trouble with onions: That’s a bit harder,” Ambos admits.

 

The taco bar moved from the back counter to front and center during one of two recent stand “freshenings” which also introduced new decor and tweaks to the steak and fish taco recipes: Both are grilled and the latter gets lots of Yelp props, as does the naked burrito bowl (the menu describes it as “the burrito you love without the tortilla”). Their guacamole and tacos were singled out in two of the stand’s four Best of Philly magazine awards.

12thstlunchline

 

Ambos answers questions about what to get with questions. “If people are really hungry, I’ll recommend an enchilada. If they’re checking out a lot of places in the Market and just want to try a little something, I’ll recommend a taco. If they’ve got to get in and out of here in a half-hour, a burrito or a salad.”

 

These dishes are actually just one of three aspects to the 12th Street business. The stand also sells Mexican grocery items and takeout, the latter from a side refrigerator case. It contains some of 12th Street’s more unusual dishes (the popular grilled shrimp and asparagus salad with cilantro vinaigrette, and the spinach and corn casserole are two for-instances), as well as offerings unique to Puebla, the place in Mexico where the Cinco de Mayo celebration of the Mexican army’s May 5, 1862 victory over French forces began (such as 12th Street’s chicken mole enchiladas).

12thstreethotsauces

 

The “grocery shelf” on top of that case is the place for Cinco de Mayo do-it-yourselfers  Even many standard supermarkets now carry queso fresca cheese but 12th Street also has the much harder-to-find queso cotija and oaxaca, as well as masa flour, chorizo sausage, and blue corn, wheat and spinach tortillas. Or leave your Cinco de Mayo party food preparation to 12th Street’s on-site catering operation.

 

The stand started out doing a lot of takeout: Today most offerings are eaten on-premises, says Jividen. This could partly be because of the other thing 12th Street offers that’s in the Market at peak hours: Its own seating.

 

12th Street Cantina, Avenue B and Ninth Avenue, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Mon.-Fri., 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Sat., and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun., 215-625-0321.

 

Carolyn Wyman is the Market's news correspondent and operator of the Reading Terminal's bi-weekly Taste of Philadelphia Food Tour (www.tasteofphillyfoodtour.com).

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Easter Shopping Guide at The Market

rtm eblast masthead april2016

 

Flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, and you probably didn't have to wear a jacket outside this morning. That can only mean one thing- Easter is right around the corner! 

Sunday, April 16th is Easter- so after the kid's are done with The Great Reading Terminal Market Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday stick around The Market to get your shopping done. Below is a helpful little guide to finding everything you need to make a delicious traditional Easter meal. Enjoy!   

 

Meats:

Ham: Giunta’s Prime Shop, Halteman Family Country Foods, La Divisa, Martin’s Quality Meats & Sausages, Godshall’s Poultry (turkey ham)

Lamb: La Divisa (every cut of lamb), Giunta’s Prime Shop (shanks, legs, chops, whole lamb), Martin’s Quality Meats & Sausage (chops, shoulder, racks, legs, lamb sausage), Halteman’s (chops, shank, leg)

 

Produce, Herbs, & Condiments:

Iovine Brothers Produce, Fair Food Farmstand, OK Produce, Condiment (mint salsa verde for lamb), The Head Nut (spices)

Lamb-Shaped Butter: Hatville Deli, Condiment

 

Eggs:

Fair Food Farmstand

 Godshall’s Poultry

Hatville Deli

Iovine Brothers Produce

Jonathan Best Gourmet Grocer

 

Desserts & Candy:

Termini Brothers: Easter Bread, Ricotta Pie, Hamintash Easter Basket, Chocolate Covered Easter Egg Cake

Flying Monkey: Short Bread Easter Egg Cookies

Pennsylvania General Store: Personalized Chocolate Easter Eggs, Easter Baskets, Chocolate Easter Bunnies

Beiler’s Bakery: Hot Cross Buns,  Rabbit-shaped Bread

Sweet as Fudge: Chocolate Easter Bunnies, various candies

The Head Nut: Various candies

 

 Cooking, Baking, & Table Top Necessities:

 Amy's Place: Basters, Cheese cloth, Fat separators, Meat thermometers, Measuring cups/spoons, Parchment paper, Twine, Roasting/Baking pans, Easter cookie cutters, Cookie sheets, Tart pans, Decorating bags and tips, Butter dishes, Gravy boats, Ladles, Table linens

Contessa's French Linens: Table Linens

 

Happy Easter, from the Reading Terminal Market family to yours! 

 

 

 

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Passover Products and Recipes at the Market

Monday, April 10th marks the beginning of Passover, and all around the world preparations are underway for the eight-day holiday, especially for the Seder dinners the first two nights. 

Here are a few freshly made Passover items you can find at the Market:

Hershel’s East Side Deli: Kugel (Potato, Potato/Kale, Potato/Broccoli, Potato/Carrot), fresh horseradish, homemade gefilte fish, brisket, spinach and matzo-stuffed chicken, Matzo ball soup, coconut macaroons, flourless apple cake, and flourless brownies (baked goods from Homemade Goodies by Roz)

Condiment: Fresh white and beet horseradish and homemade Charosets

We also have a few recipe suggestions to make your week delicious, and of course, all of the ingredients are available in the Reading Terminal Market!

 

Ingredients:

Meats & poultry: Giunta’s Prime Shop, Godshall’s Poultry, L. Halteman Family Country Meats, La Divisa Meats, Martin’s Meats

Produce & fresh herbs: Fair Food Farmstand, Iovine Brothers Produce, OK Produce

Olive oil: Jonathan Best, The Head Nut, and The Tubby Olive

Wine: Blue Mountain Vineyards

Honey: Bee Natural, Jonathan Best, Kauffman’s Lancaster County Produce, L. Halteman Family Country Foods

Orange Juice: Iovine Brothers Produce, Jonathan Best, Lancaster County Dairy

Nuts & coconut: Iovine Brothers Produce, OK Produce, Jonathan Best, The Head Nut

Coconut oil, vanilla extract, chocolate, & cocoa powder: Jonathan Best, The Head Nut 

Eggs: Fair Food Farmstand, Godshall’s Poultry, Hatville Deli, Iovine Brothers Produce, Jonathan Best 

Maple syrup: Pennsylvania General Store, Kauffman’s Lancaster County Produce, L. Halteman Family Country Foods

 

brisket

Braised brisket is a common entrée for Seder, and we think this recipe from NY Times Cooking will be a real crowd pleaser: https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1017312-brisket-with-horseradish-gremolata?action=click&module=Collection+Band+Recipe+Card&region=The+Centerpiece+of+the+Passover+Table&pgType=supercollection&rank=1

 

skillet roast chicken with fennel parsnips and scallions

Roasted chicken is also a popular choice for Passover, and this recipe from Bon Appetit made our mouths water: http://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/skillet-roast-chicken-with-fennel-parsnips-and-scallions 

kugeltzimmes

Let these two sides from Martha Stewart round out your meal: Potato Kugel Gratin http://www.marthastewart.com/967964/potato-kugel-gratin, a modern take on a classic, and traditional Tzimmes (a compote made from sweet potatoes and dried fruit) http://www.marthastewart.com/318407/tzimmes

chocolate macaroon cake

Don’t forget about dessert to finish the meal!  This decadent chocolate macaroon cake elevates the common coconut macaroon to a whole new level: http://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/chocolate-macaroon-cake 

We hope these recipes and ready-made products help make your Passover a little more delicious.  We would love to hear your favorite Passover recipes, so please share them with us on Facebook (facebook.com/readingterminalmarket) or Twitter (@rdgterminalmkt).  From all of us at Reading Terminal Market, Chag Sameach!

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“Gluten-Free Fair Fun at the Market’s New Fox & Son,” By Carolyn Wyman

FoxSon

It’s a little early in the year for a Shore boardwalk stroll or county fair excursion but you can go there gastronomically right now at the Market’s new Fox & Son.

 

It’s the first gourmet corn dog restaurant in Philly, if not the world, and the only stand in the Market to be totally gluten-free.

 

You might expect the owners of a stand featuring corn dogs, cheese curds and poutine to come from the Midwest or Quebec, where these kinds of fair foods are king. But it was actually more of a strategic decision by co-owners Rebecca Foxman and Zeke Ferguson, both Pennsylvania natives formerly of the Market’s Valley Shepherd cheese stand, and Foxman’s former culinary school classmate, Kevin Kwan, originally of Seattle. (The stand name is a portmanteau word formed from Foxman and Ferguson’s last names.)

 

“We didn’t want to compete with what other vendors were selling,” Foxman explained. “We also wanted to make things that were easy to produce in large quantities with high quality.”

 

Quality? Corn dogs? That phrase might seem oxymoronic if your only experience of this food is from the supermarket freezer case (quite possible, if you’ve always lived on the East Coast). But Foxman says people who have enjoyed fresh-made ones at county fairs who stumble on the stand squeal with delight.

 

Anyone who has enjoyed one of the grilled cheese sandwiches at Valley Shepherd’s MeltKraft stand-within-a-stand has already experienced Foxman’s ability to elevate a humble dish. Fox & Son does this for corn dogs with Dietz & Watson (pork and beef), Hebrew National (kosher), Kunzler (turkey) or Lightlife (tofu) franks but also with sauces and add-ins not found at the typical fair corn dog stand. The Sweet Potato corn dog has real mashed sweet potato incorporated into the corn batter. The cheese in the housemade queso sauce adorning the Cheddar Jalapeno dog has been aged for three years.

 

These are two survivors from a spreadsheet of more than 40 corn dog ideas and recipes the partners tested and/or discussed. (One corn dog incorporating scrapple got scratched because of preparation difficulties; a fish-sauce-containing Asian corn dog loved by all three partners was deemed too esoteric to sell big, though Ferguson says it may yet show up on the menu as a special).

 

Although it’s rare to see corn dogs or funnel cakes on a local restaurant menu, they’re familiar to many locals. Not so cheese curds, which require more explanation, says Foxman. She compares them to mozzarella sticks: “If you like fried mozzarella sticks, you’ll probably like fried cheese curds.” Custom-made for them by Chester Springs’ Birchrun Hills Farm, the curds are also sold fresh by the pound and atop hand-cut French fries with gravy to make the classic Canadian poutine.

 

The cheeseburger fries (topped with ground beef, cheddar, lettuce, tomato, onion and the Big Mac-like sauce Royale) sell even better.

 

Also on the menu: chili, funnel cakes, fresh-squeezed lemonade, organic soda, and cole slaw. The latter is a peanut-butter-containing style Foxman fell in love with while on a food scouting trip to the Texas State Fair in the fall. But Foxman’s menu favorite are fries topped with ranch powder. Despite their simplicity or perhaps because of it, they’re “very addictive,” Foxman says.

 

Fox & Son is not the only Market stand with hand-cut fries (Dutch Eating Place, Down Home Diner and Molly Malloy’s are others) but it is the only stand where they’re guaranteed to be gluten-free (because they are made in a dedicated gluten-free fryer). This has made Fox & Son a magnet for celiac sufferers, who have comprised as many as half of the stand’s early customers.

 

“We’ve actually seen tears,” says Foxman, not of dissatisfaction but of joy from people who for the first time since their diagnosis, see the whole world of fried food opening up to them once again.

 

Fox & Son, Avenue C and 4th Avenue, 10:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sat. and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun., 215-372-7935, www.foxandsonphilly.com.

 

Carolyn Wyman is the Market's news correspondent and operator of the Reading Terminal's bi-weekly Taste of Philadelphia Food Tour (www.tasteofphillyfoodtour.com).

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