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Borough Market starts a new chapter in its story with the opening of The Borough Market Kitchen. It was in 1998 that Borough Market, then facing an uncertain future as a wholesale fruit and veg market in a landscape dominated by supermarkets, set out in a brave new direction by offering a home to a diverse array of produce traders eager to sell high quality seasonal ingredients direct to the public. That decision proved to be an inspired one. Now, 21 years later, the retail market is celebrating its coming of age with another significant leap forward.

Later this month, on 18 November 2019, The Borough Market Kitchen will open in Jubilee Place, a sizeable space at the north end of the Market’s sprawling, atmospheric estate. Here, 20 stands will serve up an extensive menu of freshly prepared food, both hot and cold, which can be enjoyed at large communal tables. All 20 stands, including many old favourites that are relocating from the Green Market, as well as several new faces, have been selected for the quality and provenance of their ingredients as well as the skill and creativity of their cooks. Among those setting up for business this month are, Mei Mei, from ex-Pidgin chef Elizabeth Haigh, Batera, Pintxos Bar, Arabica, Brindisa Kitchen, East London Liquor Co., Elpinki, Gastronomica, Horn OK Please, JUMA Kitchen, La Tua Pasta, Oroshi, Padre, SHUK, Applebees Fish, Gujarati Rasoi, Joli, Khanom, Krok, Nana Fannys, Pochi, Rudie’s Jerk Shack, Scotchtails, The Bath Dairy, and The Black Pig.

In line with Borough Market’s commitment to sustainability, The Borough Market Kitchen will be entirely free of single use plastics, and the tables and seating will be constructed from sustainably sourced materials. A high proportion of the produce used in the vendors’ dishes will be sourced directly from the Market’s produce traders – the shortest supply chain possible, measuring mere metres. Together, they offer a reflection of the striking diversity of the community they serve, offering everything from the definitively British scotch eggs of Scotchtails and the traditional Jamaican dishes of Rudie’s Jerk Shack to the Basque pintxos of Mimo and the Iraqi cuisine of JUMA Kitchen.

At Borough, JUMA Kitchen will serve a small but lovingly handmade selection of Kubba, Iraqi dumplings, which are a staple part of the country’s food culture. Founder, Philip Juma, tells Something Curated: “I can’t think of anywhere better to showcase the breadth and richness of Iraqi cuisine than at Borough Market. I wanted to serve something delicious, authentic and original. Kubba ticks all those boxes. At my supperclubs, I’d offer a 5-course tasting menu and Kubba always stole the show. What better way to celebrate this gem than by dedicating JUMA’s first permanent site to it?”

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The secret is out!!!! JUMA is opening it's first permanent, bricks & mortar unit at Borough Market @boroughmarket 🎉🇮🇶🌍🙏🏼😊🎯🏆 The concept will be centred around IRAQI KUBBA; Kubba Haleb, Kubba Hamuth and Potato Chap will be on the menu all year round, with monthly seasonal specials to give you all your dolma/bamia/quozi/biryani/kabab/tepsi fix! 😉 Words can't describe just how happy and proud I am of this opportunity. This is HUGE!!!!!! You have all contributed to making this happen. I look back at how far we've come – you've been there supporting me, and inspiring me to push during the times I had wanted to throw in the towel. You keep me going and motivate me more than you know!  Iraqi cuisine has been given a MASSIVE platform to shine and I'm going to give it my all!  Mistakes will be made, and consistency is going to be key, but I can't wait for this new chapter. I've got so many thank you's but for now, I want to acknowledge @ravneeteats @countertalk and @victoriastewartpics for helping me find some incredible people to help build this thing (and control my anxiety). All of the Iraqi community in London, and worldwide, thank you!  Your messages mean so much and this is testament to your support.  To everyone who has tried my food on the pop-up circuit over the years, thank you!  To all my family and friends, and anyone reading this – thank you! JUMA has a home 😊 With everything going on in Iraq right now, there is a lot to be down about. Amongst all the corruption and sadness, it has been moving to witness the solidarity and connection of the Iraqi people. I hope this is something that brings joy to the Iraqi community and remind the world of our beautiful and resilient culture. Love to you all 🇮🇶♥️🌍 #jumakitchen #iraqicuisine #iraqifood #jumafoundahome #mumtazmoments #kubba #kubbaislife #boroughmarket 📸 by @telphotog

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As well as providing a convivial place to enjoy high quality food and drink, The Borough Market Kitchen has also been designed to ensure that the experience of shopping for seasonal ingredients elsewhere in the Market is as straightforward and intuitive as possible. Following the opening, Three Crown Square and the entire Green Market area will be dominated by producers and produce sellers, some of whom will be shifting from their current positions to make the most of the freed-up space. Rochester Walk, which feeds into the Jubilee Place space, will continue to offer an exceptional blend of ingredients and prepared foods from the likes of Elpinki, Gastronomica, East London Liquor Co, Arabica and Brindisa.

The Borough Market Kitchen will be open from Monday to Saturday, from 10am to 5pm (6pm on Fridays). Once the kitchen closes for the day, the space will revert back to its current use as a hub for wholesale operations.

Feature image: Elizabeth Haigh’s signature Buttermilk Fried Chicken & Caviar Katsu Sando (via @the_modernchef)

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