Mercat-1930-3 Mercat 1930, Sweet but Good  - PenAndWok.com - Cecilie's PenAndWok.com

I have often wondered why, when a country's inhabitants move and start to recreate their cuisine abroad, they think they have to make the food a lot sweeter than it was when it was "at home". I have noticed it especially with Chinese and Indian restaurants in the US, Norway and now here in Mallorca. No matter if the chef is a native of the country or someone from somewhere else who has learnt the noble art of cooking foreign and exotic food, in goes the sugar by the carload. 

Mercat-1930-2 Mercat 1930, Sweet but Good  - PenAndWok.com - Cecilie's PenAndWok.com

I was thinking about that the other day when my friend S was kind enough to invite me to lunch, and in a place well within the radius of my new 8 minute rule (spending the next few months checking out ALL the hospitality establishment that are 8 minutes' walk from my place or less), namely Mercat 1930 Palma Gastronomic MarketMercat 1930 Palma Gastronomic Market. It is an intriguing-looking place on the Passeig Maritimo which I have often passed on dog walks, wanting to try it out. So here we were among the seven different categories of food: Andalusian Specialities, Croquettes and Battered, Iberian Sausages, Tapas, Sweet Stuff, Healthy Food and Drinks and Thai Innovative. Spoilt for choice indeed! 

Mercat-1930-4 Mercat 1930, Sweet but Good  - PenAndWok.com - Cecilie's PenAndWok.com

The Market has been there since 1910 but has of course been gentrified and hipsterified - most of the tables are high and perch-y which isn't my favourite but is the way of the world now. The further away from the floor, the healthier and more gluten-free it is, seems to be the philosophy. Having said that, it's far better than sitting folded up with stomach squashed together on a sofa.

Mercat-1930-7 Mercat 1930, Sweet but Good  - PenAndWok.com - Cecilie's PenAndWok.com

Anyway, my friend chose Thai, which I of course love. Who doesn't? We both had Corn Fritters, and they were better than anything I have tasted in Thailand or Hong Kong. Succulent! Beautiful! With a slight crunch! And beautifully presented. And the sauce looked so beautiful. Yes looked. 

Mercat-1930-6 Mercat 1930, Sweet but Good  - PenAndWok.com - Cecilie's PenAndWok.com

But the taste was - hot, good, but also sickeningly sweet. I know, the sauce Thai cooking uses for for example prawn cake is supposed to be sweet - and unfortunately normally comes out of a bottle. But this was something else in the sweet-stakes. It was almost inedible. So we quickly tucked into the main course: 

Mercat-1930-5 Mercat 1930, Sweet but Good  - PenAndWok.com - Cecilie's PenAndWok.com

Chicken green curry. It was innovate all right, in that it didn't look like a normal Thai curry, where the ingredients are kind of submerged in the sauce. This was more like cold chicken slivers and aubergine resting on a vaguely green curry-tasting sauce. Beautiful of course, and delicious. And, fortunately, not over-sweet. And they had chopsticks! So, almost full marks for Mercat 1930 for me; I will definitely have especially Corn Fritters again in the future, but with a different sauce/dip. What IS it with this addiction to sugar? 

 

Mercat 1930 

Avinguda de Gabriel Roca 33 (Passeig Maritimo)

07014 Palma

669 787 804

 

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