Food as Art
Chris made this salad for lunch yesterday and said that the paints were part of the presentation. She used a couple of hard boiled eggs I made the day before. My method of cooking hard boiled eggs is an adaption of the Cooks Magazine shallow boiled method. Click this link to look at the method. Note that these eggs are steamed for 8 minutes rather than the 10 minutes in the recipe.
B Patisserie Open
After the crepe place closed on California Street near our home, we were wondering what would take its place. Then a sign appeared that said B Patisserie would be opening a bakery and cafe. Anxiously we watched as the remodelling s l o w l y moved along. Sunday I was going out for a walk and someone told me it was open - so of course we went to check it out.
A Holiday Tradition
The art of apple pie has been a family tradition as long as I can remember. My Dad made them. My Mom made them. I tried my hand at it, but Chris has truly perfected it.
This one was truly great. The crust buttery, flaky, with no trace of undercooked and doughy bottom crust. The apple filling tart and sweet and cooked enough to have some bite, texture and keep its shape. The combination and contrast wonderful. Thank you.
For us in California, Churros has always been in the Mexican style coated with sugar and cinnamon. In Spain, churros are served plain ready to be dipped into a cup of hot thick chocolate or into your cafe con leche. The San Gines Chocolateria has been pleasing patrons for over a century. They only make churros, chocolate and coffee so they've had some time to get this right.
Get Them Now!
In summers years back when my parents had a large vegetable garden in the San Joaquin Vally, we would reap the benefits of their hard work in the blistering 100 degrees heat and have the sweetest most flavorful tomatoes I've ever tasted. Every tomatoe since then has not measured up - except for the dry farmed tomatoes that are now in season at the farmers markets and specialty grocery stores.
A special combination of soil, waterfall, and temperature produce small intensely flavored tomatoes that remind me of my parents' tomatoes. Being farmed without irrigation results in a smaller tomatoe, but the taste is wonderful.
Ordinary People at the Farmers Market
Long before Foodies gushed about local, seasonal, and organic food sourced from small farmers, the Alemany Farmers Market was offering this food in a no nonsense straight forward manner. In contrast, the downtown Ferry Building Farmers Market garners all the publicity and yes -- it is beautiful and chic no question. The Ferry Building is located next to the iconic Bay Bridge in a historic skylit building while the Alemany Farmers Market is an outdoor barren concrete shed tucked in at the side of the intersection of two freeways.
Here at the Alemany Farmers Market ordinary people shop.
SOMA StEAT Food Park
SOMA StrEAT Food Park opened a while ago. Its only a couple of blocks from me so I went over to check it out. There's a changing variety of trucks so there's always something different to try. Today I had the Salmon Salad (Truck on the right) and the Chairman Bao Baked Pork Belly bun (truck on the left). Both really good. The sun finally came out so it was pleasant sitting outdoors.
Hup Seng Cream Crackers
I was walking up and down the aisle at 99 Ranch Market the other day checking out all the "exotic" stuff. I like the old time graphics from Asia.
Orange Garden Chop Suey Chow Mein
Neon signs are fading from American streets. As parts of a neon go dark, owners are increasing letting them go until only the painted backdrop is left. Americans also want "authentic" cuisine and shun the pretend exotic Chinese dishes grandma and grandpa enjoyed. Are these the last days for this neon sign?
Chicago Chinatown is a short subway right from downtown Chicago on the Red Line. Just north of the traditional Chinese gateway leading to the older section of Chinatown is a mall with shops and resturants. We had dinner at Ken Kee Restaurant at 2129-A South China Place. Ken Kee Restaurant serves Hong Kong style food so it was a surprise to see a Szechuan dish prominently featured on the menu. The photo looked enticing so we tried it. Szechuan Fish in Spicy Broth is strongly flavored with Szechuan pepper corns, Szechuan red pepper sauce, and chilis. Wonderful spicy taste, but be warned if you are not used to this dish, it may be an issue for gastro-intestinal tract. I don't see this dish on their on-line menu, but we saw it on the restaurant menu.
If you want to try it but aren't going to Chicago, I found a recipe on-line here.
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