Pick up fresh pasta, sauce, cheeses, oils and vinegars, then roam over to one of the produce stands in the market to complete your meal with fresh veggies. They also have gift baskets if you happen to have any pasta lovers on your list.
Products are made locally and wheat and gluten-free options are available. (You can also find their products at Whole Foods and some independent Italian food stores in BC. Visit their website for details.)
Pastas include long and short cut pastas, stuffed pastas and gnocchi.
The Ribbon Raviolini are large raviolis, stuffed with fresh combinations, like butternut squash, artichoke and sundried tomato, ricotta and spinach and porcini. The ribbons refer to the stripes of the vegetable ingredients and are an interesting touch; they make the raviolis look kind of like a dad sweater.
Since I’ve never had raviolini before, I decided to opt for this. These stuffed pasta are about 2-2.5 inches. I asked the person behind the counter what a serving size is, and he said it’s about six raviolinis. I choose the artichoke and sun-dried tomato.
The pasta definitely has the soft, floury feel of fresh dough. I couldn’t wait to get them home. I asked the counterperson for a sauce recommendation and chose the Creamy Basil Pesto. The ingredients on the labels of both the pasta and the sauce were all fresh and recognizable. There are no preservatives or unpronounceable words. Not only are they fresh, but a lot of ingredients went into the sauce, which was delicious, garlicy, flavourful and definitely creamy.
The smoothness of the sauce was a great accompaniment to the tart, generously stuffed raviolis. Although the tomatoes and artichokes were processed, the few larger pieces inside only helped to give it a real home-cooked texture.
These fresh ingredients combined to make a meal just as good, if not better, than most restaurant pasta dishes, but a little on the expensive side for a home-cooked meal. However, despite my initial scepticism, I did find the six raviolinis quite filling. You can probably cut down on the pasta if you add bread and salad. Plus, I’ll definitely have plenty of sauce left over for the rest of the week.
The label instruction was to cook the pasta for 10 minutes, which seemed a little long for fresh pasta, I set the timer for eight, but at seven minutes I began worrying when all the pasta was buoyantly floating at the top of the pot – a common sign of doneness. However, in the end, I could have left it for possibly another minute.
If you are looking for a almost ready home-cooked meal, or to impress a houseguest, this is definitely a great place to pick up quality prepared food at the Granville Island Public Market.
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