Sunday, January 24, 2010

A 'Foodie's Haven'

It's a cold, wet, dark and less than inspiring Sunday in Seattle. One of those Sundays that's spent cleaning, running errands and mentally preparing for another work week. Blah, to sum it up in a word.

I'd love to rewind back one week, when I was in Oakland at my boyfriend's uncle's place, sipping Brut rose and snacking on Hog Island oysters with champagne mignonette and chili sauce before enjoying roasted organic rainbow carrots, perfectly toasted crostini and a fresh sun dried tomatoe and mozzarella salad sprinkled with green onions. Sigh.

Or to earlier last Sunday morning, when I couldn't have cared less about the rain and was traipsing through the streets of San Francisco in my wellies while en route to the Ferry Building Marketplace. My friend Kate of Orange Violet recommended we swing by, and my friend Tess backed her up, calling it a "foodie's haven." Spot on. We spent the morning exploring the space's over 40 shops and grabbing brunch before picking up a few things for a light, low-key dinner in. Much needed following two days of intense intake (more to come on that front).

We fueled up on a turkey sandwich and chips from Lulu Petite so we weren't grocery shopping with grumbling stomachs. Turkey sound boring? Far from it. It was served in between brioche and stacked with bacon, avocado and a rhubarb remoulade. And the chips were homemade with rosemary sea salt. Pretty perfect with a fresh squeezed orange juice.

We probably spent another hour walking in circles before buying anything else, sampling local cheeses, scoping out fish, pondering meat and drooling over sweet treats. For a few minutes, we were so overwhelmed by the options that we almost considered just calling it quits. That of course passed. We snapped out of it, came to our senses and deemed a simple pasta with some fresh, local touches the right call.

Cured meat cones from Boccalone Salumerie. I probably saw 15 different people with them within the first 25 minutes we were there. No way we were passing them up. We also nabbed some pancetta for the pasta there. Delicious, salty pork how I love thee.

A small portion of the mushroom selection at Far West Fungi. Debated the porcini, but the clerk's warning about them being so fresh we'd likely need to cook out worms just didn't do it for me. We went with some heavenly hedgehogs to go with the Pancetta instead.

Macaroons at Miette, a little patisserie my friend Tess suggested. These little sweeties didn't last until dinner. I nabbed a chocolate, a hazelnut and two vanilla. Worth the wait and even the anger I endured after a group of teenage girls cut in front of me in line.

We also picked up some red chard for color (and bit of something nutritious), a fresh baguette from Acme bakery and a healthy-sized slice of Comte from Cowgirl Creamery. The end result:

Not exactly the light meal we were going for, but it was oh-so good and satisfying to make something ourselves after 48 hours of eating an obscene number of calories at restaurants.

Not to say those meals out were not completely and utterly amazing. Stay tuned for a post and pictures from a little adventure in Berkeley and the amazing meal at Chez Panisse that came with it.

Have a good week.

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