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St. Lawrence Market

Just came back from St. Lawrence. We don't go all that often because quite frankly I find it over crowded and more often than not, it's a hassle shopping there. Very quickly I get hot and tired from lugging bags around. But today I bought a bag of clementines....they are excellent. I was thinking it was too early and they would be dry but these are great. And the best score was the fresh pasta place. Has anyone else tried the 3 color sauce they've been doing?? It is fantastic. They were giving free samples today and I couldn't resist. Bought some for home. It's mainly tomato sauce but then they add some alfredo and pesto sauce nicely layered on top. May not sound all that great, but trust me it is fantastic. Can't wait for dinner!!

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  1. Did you buy the sauce at the Italian place upstairs or downstairs?

    11 Replies
    1. re: deelicious

      I think the tri-colour sauce is from the place upstaris. I absolutely love getting pasta with their tomato/meat sauce to eat for lunch. It's yummy!

      1. re: deabot

        Yes the one upstairs. Unfortunately won't be trying it tonight. Hubby wants to do a scallop and pancetta recipe.

        1. re: deabot

          between the portuguese chicken and that meaty tomato sauce, i want for nothing at slm. i don't know why exactly but that pasta with tomato/meat sauce is the most addicting thing i've had in a while.. could be that extra edge of sweetness that's not always found.

          1. re: pinstripeprincess

            Have you tried the tri color sauce? It is heaven and yes, very addicting!!

              1. re: mobirose

                there's a churrasqueira place in the peameal corner just off of the north entrance of the south (main) market with some lovely roasted spicy chicken. it's pricey but the quantity is pretty darn good. i've had chicken at a couple reputable places around town but this places beats them easy.

                1. re: pinstripeprincess

                  Their rissois are to die for and I always try to bring a bag home when I visit TO (they travel pretty well). Also no visit to TO is complete without a loaded chicken and eggplant sandwich from Mustachio's.

                  1. re: John Manzo

                    okay now I must go back and try both the chicken and the rissois, which I've never had but sound great. Thanks pinstripe and john.

                    1. re: millygirl

                      I prefer the charcoal chicken at Churrasco's rather than the broiled ones. It's more expensive but far tastier and less fatty.

                  2. re: pinstripeprincess

                    NovoCuisine turned me on to the bifana sandwiches at Churrasco. It's an unbreaded, tender pork cutlet on a bun with lettuce, tomato, grilled peppers, and a little hot sauce. Now my favourite thing to eat at the Market. Okay, it's the only thing I eat there. Next time you're there and hungry you might try one. Bring a friend. They're big enough to share. And don't be in a hurry. They make them while you wait. No just grabbing a pre-wrap.

                  3. re: mobirose

                    Churrasco's also does excellent chicken wings. You have to order them in advance or be prepared to wait for them. The wings are coated in their spicy piri-piri sauce and are delicious. 12 wings will cost you approx $8.00

            1. Thanks for the tip about the clementines, millygirl. I was briefly tempted in Dominion today, then I saw they were from China. Now, I know we can't buy local for everything here in TO, but CHINA? and I will look for that sauce.

              6 Replies
              1. re: LJS

                I dont think the problem with buying food from China is detectable by taste...

                1. re: LJS

                  The clementines I picked up were actually from California!

                  1. re: LJS

                    The best are from Marocco (IMO) - You'll have to wait a little bit... Those with a very smooth thin skin are the best.

                    1. re: cocolou

                      I usually do get the ones from Morroco, but these from California are even better....thin smooth skin too! And seedless to boot.

                      1. re: millygirl

                        Lucky you! I bought a box of clementines from Loblaws about ten days ago and the first one I ate had 26 pits! Yes, 26 - I was so amazed that I had to count them all. The whole box was like that, too...

                        1. re: seeldee

                          These come in a orange mesh bag....just got another bag today at Sunvalley on the Danforth except it was a $1 more. I don't recall seeing these last year

                  2. I love SLM, but I completely hear you about the crowds, especially on Saturdays and that is when the farmer's market is open. My trick is to use the pick up service just outside the middle west facing doors on the lower level. Just drop off bags there as you shop and then drive your car around to collect them. Free service, tip appreciated.

                    Thanks for the clementine tip. Love the italian place, good pasta and their pizza dough ($2.50 a ball) is outstanding.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Mila

                      Really, I was not aware that this service is available. Great to know and thanks for the tip Mila.

                    2. Don't know if your schedule allows for this but try shopping there during the week - it's absolutely empty! The market is open until 6 p.m. every night and 7 on Fridays. I work quite nearby so that's when I go. There's always lots of parking too. You can be in and out in 30 minutes.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Higgette

                        I entirely agree. I love the SLM every day of the week except Saturdays, which are a frustrating nightmare. Even Friday nights are great: they're open til 7pm, though some stores will start closing up a bit sooner.

                      2. The tri-colour sauce is definitely delicious (although when you mix it up, it looks a little less appetizing!). I find their tomato sauce (hot) to be quite good as well...much easier than making it at home.

                        1. Go earlier. You can get fully served at 5:30 am. Only the smart people go then, as the place is fully stocked, and nobody to run into, except me.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: BeeRich

                            I've been to the market at 5:30am on a Saturday. (Don't ask.) Trust me. Half the vendors aren't there yet and the other half haven't set-up. 8am is plenty especially if you like the Indian goods at Ranni. She's always later than the rest.

                            1. re: Googs

                              My general rule of thumb is that if you can't get there before 7 it isn't worth going. I find that about 6:45 is pretty much perfect. (except for around Thanksgiving then subtract one hour). It usually is manageable and everyone is open. Good people watching at that point as well!

                              1. re: Googs

                                I'm there every week at that time. Works fine for me. No crowds, full inventory. by 6 am on some big days (Thanksgiving, Christmas) the place is busy.

                            2. I'm heading to the Market tomorrow and just suffered through a VERY seedy clementine. Do you recall which fruit stand you got your wonderful clementines from?

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: jayzie1

                                Okay I am really bad with directions but here goes. As you go in the main building, it is on your right hand side, about half way up. If I'm not mistaken, this is all they sell. But I was there the other day and noticed they didn't have the ones in the mesh bag only the boxes. Make sure you get the mesh bag - the brand is Sweetie Clementine by Mulholland Citrus. The mesh bag is orange with a plastic blue handle on top. I justt picked up a second bag from Sun Valley on the Danforth so perhaps they are widely available. Good luck!! The great pasta/sauce place is just further up on the same side.

                                1. re: millygirl

                                  Those are excellent directions. I now know exactly what to look for tomorrow morning. I'll check out the pasta place too. I live close by so I tend to go every week and I'm still discovering new products/vendors! Thanks for another great reco - I found out about the wonderful Summerhill Market from you too! : )

                              2. I bought some wonderful fresh black pepper linguini from the upstairs pasta place; delicious stuff if you're doing a simple pasta dish.

                                Personally, I can only get to St. Lawrence on weekdays since I work around there. I love going in around 10:30, 11.. it's pretty much empty, except for the cute chefs shopping.

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: NovoCuisine

                                  jayzie 1, did you find the clementines??

                                  1. re: millygirl

                                    Found the clementines - exactly as you described and very tasty! Also picked up some fresh pasta and the tricolour sauce you recommended. The sauce was amazing, although it's hard to portion out the pesto, tomato and alfredo equally. Nonetheless, terrific. Thanks for another great recommendation!

                                    1. re: jayzie1

                                      Oh good, glad to hear it was a success. When I made the pasta I just mixed the sauce all together and heated it up.