ShopLK Blog – Multinational Grocery()

ShopLK Blog – Multinational Grocery

Welcome to the ShopLK Blog! Today, we're exploring our incredible multinational grocers. With so many cultures calling Letterkenny home, what better time to celebrate the fantastic places your ShopLK card can take you? There's a whole world of fantastic food and ingredients right at your fingertips. As your humble guide to all things Letterkenny, let's see how we can incorporate a few of these exotic foods to expand your culinary horizons.


LK Continental — Courtyard Shopping Centre

First stop on our world tour, Letterkenny’s newest supermarket, LK Continental! Froozan, Hamza, and Khalid were fantastic showing me around the incredible selection of fresh vegetables, homeware, and variety of spices for whatever dish you’re looking for. The rolled apricots caught my eye; the difference between rolled apricots and dried apricots is well—they're rolled. But there’s more to it than that. The fruit is pipped, lightly salted, twisted, and left to dry under the sun. This process avoids any harsh chemicals or pesticides. You might think they’d be great in a summer dessert, and they would be, but I used them in a Middle Eastern Chicken Stew. Just throw in any vegetables that need to be used, chicken, stock, equal parts tomato and harissa paste, spices to season, all into a slow cooker. Because the fruit is dried, the apricot absorbs the stock so well and adds a unique sweet/savoury contrast to the dish. Best served alongside couscous but you could totally get away with using rice. Try it out!


Royal Spice Land — Derry Road

Royal Spice Land, on the Derry Road, might be my new favourite shop in Letterkenny. Shown around by the wonderful owner, Cijo, you can tell immediately this is a man passionate about the quality of his food and the experience of his customers. The store stocked high with fresh vegetables, a jam-packed freezer section, and maybe the finest meat counter I’ve ever seen. With exquisite cuts like bone-in Beef Shin and Oxtail to more traditional cuts such as Sirloin and Topside, and the quality is outstanding! I couldn’t leave without the Beef Short Rib. Seriously, if you’re cooking for your next dinner party and want to blow your guests away, I can’t recommend Royal Spice Land enough; you really can’t find anything like it anywhere else!


U Violiki — Pearse Road

Next, I called into U Violki along the Pearse Road. Now if you haven’t been in, there’s a vast array of eastern European cuisine to enjoy here. The staff couldn’t be more welcoming, and they’re so knowledgeable about their food. Which is great if you aren’t sure exactly what it is you’re looking for. Now if you haven’t cooked eastern European food before, think savoury, hearty, comfort food. I would suggest reading a few recipes because it’s such a fine balance of subtle flavours; it can be incredibly easy to overpower some dishes. While this photo didn’t make the post, this podwawelska sausage is a serious game-changer. It’s a smoky, cured sausage, so it’s incredibly versatile and can be thrown into anything. Lightly fried in with a quick scramble egg is my personal go-to, but it would steal the show in a Jambalaya.


Spiceland Letterkenny — Port Road

Just beside Lidl on the Port Road, you will find Letterkenny Spice Land. And let me tell you they have everything you could need to spice up your mid-week meals. With a superb range of spices, herbs, and vegetables. It’s chock-full of things you simply can’t get anywhere else, case in point, my latest obsession, Jalebi— it’s a sweet, crunchy dessert, made with a deep-orange batter and shaped into these beautiful spirals. Now if you resist the urge to eat them straight from the box, they will make a perfect dessert, served alongside fresh cream and berries, the crunchiness of the Jalebi would add a new twist to an old favourite.


Petra Food — Main Street 

I then made my way to Petra Food on the Main Street, and what an incredible place if you haven’t been. I was greeted by the friendliest team that walked me around the store and talked me through some of their incredible produce. I asked for a recommendation, something authentic that could be shared, after much deliberation between the team members, I was handed the Pistachio Halva. Following their advice, I was to eat it with a generous spread of unsalted butter and brew a pot of strong coffee alongside it. And what a dish! If you’ve never had it before, Halva is a fudge-like, crumbly dessert that melts in your mouth. With a strong, sweet flavour that is balanced well by the Pistachio top. And I can’t thank the team enough for the recommendation, although I’m already planning to call by again and see what else they suggest.


Payless Grocery — Port Road 

I called into Payless to be greeted by Talha who was fantastic. He kindly showed me around, and I am pleased to report that there’s a huge amount of stock waiting to be discovered. I wanted to pick up some snacks for the team at the office, and decided that the sweet Nugdi, which is a South Asian sweet snack along with some of these little cookies which I don’t think we’re from anywhere specific but were still delightful. Needless to say, they didn’t last long in the office! Thanks so much to Talha for picking these out.