An old school, real deal country-style Southern breakfast: Big Ed’s City Market

Lots of folks in Baltimore are mighty irked — to say the least — of the disappearance of old-school, real deal places to have breakfast or lunch. Some have gone to Glory, buffeted about by the economy. There are some places — incessantly in the news, trying too hard, like the buck-toothed girl at prom — that are as fake as a Hollywood stage set. I can’t bring any “honniness” (“honniosity”?) to your life. But I can point the way to a place that makes things that some of your Southern great grandparents would have ate. (Oh, by the way . . . if “anyone” wants to claim copyright infringement for words I just coined myself, I’ve been a member of the Maryland Bar for nearly 20 years. Come and git you some, baby.)

Whether you’re following the Capitals’ hockey games, visiting some Southern kin, or passing through town, Raleigh has that true leap back into time experience in Big Ed’s City Market. I’m glad I got to try it!

The decor is filled with kitchy collectibles — but not fake antiques. They have real items collected from the family farm.

They start out with farm-fresh ingredients like eggs from their own place, veggies bought daily from the farmer’s market and house-made sausage. Their are other things that you might not have heard of, except for your elders talking about: fatback biscuits, saw mill gravy and (pork) brains and eggs — “everything but the squeal”!

Fried fatback is like bacon, but very, very crunchy. You might be more familiar with fatback stewed with greens.

They have combined a cherished pound cake recipe with pancakes f or the fluffiest, best pancakes you may ever eat.

Big Ed’s City Market serves something called “Redneck

For a old-fashioned Carolina specialty, order the herring roe and eggs. Oh, don’t be scared! It’s just that part of the world’s version of caviar and scrambled eggs.

220 Wolfe Street
Raleigh, NC 27601-1824
(919) 836-9909

Hours: Sun Closed; Mon-Fri 7am–2pm; Sat 7am–12pm

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