A bottle of dessert peaches served at a social. For Sanoline Viljoen that was the start of her seven-year run as one of the stalwarts of the Groenstoor.
It was in January 2009 that she served those peaches to a few family members. Tharina Jonker, founder of the Pure Boland Market, was one of them.
“It dawned on Tharina that I could sell it. She had mentioned late the previous year that she would start the market, but I felt I didn’t have enough time to prepare. After that night I got all the bottles from my pantry and bought fine red check fabric to cover the caps. And lo and behold, my bottles sold pretty well.”
Sanoline hasn’t looked back since. She almost always has some variety of jam, dessert fruit or other preserve on the stove. She bakes batch after batch of rusks throughout the month. And she prepares as much lemonade and ginger beer as she thinks she can sell.
The jaffles are the best
But it’s the meaty jaffles that sell best. “From the moment we walk into the Groenstoor each morning of the market, to the moment we pack up, I’m baking jaffles. They’ve just always sold extremely well. There were times when I thought there were too many other things to eat at the market – mayby my jaffles won’t sell – but they always did and still do.”
Sanoline’s stall has become so busy that her husband, Limpie has to help out – permanently.
Sanoline has been a creative home-maker most of her life. Apart from ensuring a constant supply of home-made preserves in the house, she also did her own sewing: her children’s clothes, her husband’s trousers and the like. To this day she uses the odd evening to stitch something together. Currently it’s baby bibs – the popular triangular kind, in the most beautiful fabric designs – which you’ll also find on her table at the Pure Boland Market.
Sanoline loves the rush of people coming through the Groenstoor each month. And she has much praise for her fellow traders, who each add their own dimension to the group.
“I really enjoy it. There was one month that I decided I would like to take a rest and end my stint at the Groenstoor. But I missed it too much and the next month I was back!”
Quitting seems to be the last thing on Sanoline’s mind these days. A huge pot of peach jam is bubbling away on the stove. A large cupboard is filled wall to wall with jars of delicious-looking preserves. And Sanoline is glancing at the clock every now and again – a lot needs to be done before Saturday!
• For more information on the Pure Boland Market, click here.