Category: Katie - AM Musings
Tricycle in Storefront on Fillmore Street, San Francisco
This old tricycle has been beautifully restored and displayed.  Its bright red color striking against a hite background with a piece of natural wood behind the seat.  It reminded me instantly of the tricycle we bought for Katie who is now about to turn 21. 

Tricycles with their three wheels offer a little more stability so the little toddler can take off on their own .  .  .  . somehow I still feel the same way.
Sometimes, places just stick in your mind.  For me, Brompton Quarter Cafe is one of them.  I happened upon it after visiting the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.  In an old building but with large corner windows, it has a stylish interior with causual dining upstairs and a more formal dining room downstairs. 

I liked their fresh peppermint tea and made a point of going back on our next visit, but alas they were out of peppermint!

PS - Happy Birthday Katie!
Winter Melon Soup
I remember as a kid, coming home to the welcoming smell of the long slow cooked soups that Mom made.  Now, Alex has moved into his own apartment and he surprised me by saying, he misses the Chinese soups we make at home . . . . and the other night, Katie asked me to teach her how to make Winter Melon Soup.  See my recipe here.

Katie's stuffed pepper
Katie made dinner recently devising a menu from what was available in the pantry and refrigerator.  

Pictured above is a sweet bell pepper stuffed with Katie's special Mexican rice deftly inserted with a piece of cheese for richness.  The baked stuffed pepper was cradled on a bed of sauteed spinach, a puddle of tomato coulis and a few stuffed mushrooms on the side.  Thanks Katie - beautiful dinner.
Incanto Exterior Wall Decoration
We celebrated Chris' birthday at Incanto Restaurant.  Located at 1550 Church Street at Duncan in Noe Valley.  At 6:30 PM parking was easy, but parking may be difficult at later times.  Featured in an Anthony Bourdain TV episode on San Francisco, it has a reputation for it devotion to pork and offal.   I love pork, but I'm a little quesy about innards.  Katie, however, is adventuresome and ordered the lamb heart tartar.  I admit it was good, but I stopped at a taste.  Katie gobbled it up.  

The design of the restaurant has a nice traditional Italian feel about it, but still crisp and contemporary.  The front of the restaurant faces east and at 6:30 PM the summer late afternoon sunlight reflected off the walls of building across the street -- backlighting and making the faces of my dining partners difficult to see.  It's a difficult lighting problem.  You either boost the lighting on the inside to balance the light from the outside -- or you shade the windows from the outside glare.

The salumi platter was available in three sizes and the mid-sized platter was generous and the selection good.  My slow braised pork shoulder lacked the succulent moisture I was expecting.  Best dishes were the ragu handkerchief pasta with duck egg on top - deliciously rich and Bay leaf panna cotta.  They have a great looking website and an interesting read.  Take a look here.
Expresso Chocolate Cake with Butter Cream Frosting
Birthday cake with ice cream
Celebrating three birthdays in our family, Katie bakes a Expresso Chocolate Cake with Butter Cream Frosting!

Ann Sacks Ceramic Tile being delivered to Pine Street
I ordered ceramic tile from Ann Sacks on June 28th and they said it should be delivered in 7-10 days.  I always thought Ann Sacks was pretty high end, but the last time I went in, they had some moderately priced tile.  It's hard looking on-line and at small samples to figure out how it will look.  The showroom is a better place to try and visualize the final result.

Sure enough, it got here July 8th within 10 days via ABF delivery from the east coast.
a 1,000 lbs of tile
I ordered two different tiles and everything looks in good shape -- except I think I got an extra box of one type and was short one box of the other.   Oops, double checked - its all ok.  I had to make a little space for it in our packed garage.  Thanks Katie, for helping make space.

Miller's Pastrami Sandwich - San Francisco

I had my first "real" pastrami sandwich at the famous Carnegie Deli in Manhattan - piled high and impossibly delicious. Katie always ordered the Chicken Soup, Alex always wants a piece of cheesecake, and Chris wants the dill pickles. Too bad it's so far away.

Ted, at Mock/Wallace Architects is the "Pastrami King" and blogs about all things pastrami at this blog-site.  He'll tell you everything you want to know about Pastrami in the Bay Area and beyond.  He says Millers East Coast Deli  has the best Pastrami in San Francisco.  When Alex suggested going there last week, I said "YES!"   How does it compare to Carnegie? -- close. . . 
Cleaning out the garage is like being an archeologist.  I come across bits and pieces of my history, but I don't know the details. 

I found this pin in a box and showed it my Mother.  She said it was hers --  acquired in Hong Kong in the 1930's.  It is a carving of a Phoenix.   Long hidden in the dark, it is now in the light free to dance again.  Legend tells us a phoenix only appears during times of peace, prosperity, and happiness.  Surely its appearance is an auspicious sign! 

I gave it to my daughter Katie because her Chinese name is fung mo or dancing phoenix.  At nineteen she has a striking resemblance to her grandmother at the same age and just like the pin, she is emerging into the light.  Now it is a part of her history.

Yesterday was Mother's Day.  In reality everyday is Mother's Day.  Once you are a parent you are a parent always - your kids always in your mind and heart.

Katie created this arrangement  to honor her mother Chris and picked colors she thought would please her.  There's a nice range of texture and scale of elements.  The large white lilies sets everything off and pulls it together.  It's not too self-conscious.  That's good.