Aug
28

Weekend Round-up

by

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Suzanne Peabody Ashworth and Jim Mills 

What a great gastronomic weekend!  We started early on Saturday and visited the grand opening of the East Bay Culinary Center.  We were greeted by fellow Slow Food member Jim Mills who was there with Suzanne Peabody Ashworth of Del Rio Farms.  Jim offered us samples of beautiful, perfectly ripe peaches, figs, plums and blackberries. 
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We grazed through dozens of food stations and enjoyed:

  • Balsamic vinegars and Cabernet sorbet from Lodi
  • Olive oils from Mad Dog Mesa in Coloma
  • Spicy pork and carne asada tacos from Antonio’s (Yuba City)
  • Enchiladas from, what else, “The Whole Enchilada” on J Street (apparently it is a Mexican buffet – anyone been there?)
  • Coffee and coffee cakes from Old Soul in Midtown
  • Fig and anise bread (so yummy!) and cranberry walnut bread from Bella Bru
  • Imperial rolls from Andy Nguyen on Folsom Blvd.
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  • “Blatters” – delicate European pastries from Hoffmann Fine Foods & Dessert European Bakery
  • Mighty Kong muffins, and various cheeses and olives
  • All before 9:00 a.m.!  My husband said, ‘this is the best breakfast I’ve had in a long time!’  Clearly, we both have iron stomachs.   

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    We watched a portion of pastry chef Ginger Power’s demonstration in the new kitchen, which by the way, is WAY cool!  As mentioned in a previous entry, chef and culinary instructor Carolyn Kumpe will be leading the new culinary center and classes and demonstrations will begin next month (we’ll make sure to post activities on sacfoodies.)  We would have liked to have stayed all day and watch all the demonstrations, but Michael Buble and a trip to San Francisco awaited us…. 

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    I’ve heard great things about the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market in San Francisco, so I was excited when fellow Sac Foodie, Melinda McRae, myself and our foodie hubbies found ourselves with a few extra hours to spend in the City on Saturday on the way to a concert. 

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    The colorful produce won me over. From rainbow chard to red, orange, and yellow peppers and radishes, it was a gorgeous spectrum. Since I work with the United States Potato Board, I was excited to see Russian Banana and Rose Fir specialty potato varieties too. We took home heirloom tomatoes for a colorful Caprese salad, and blackberries for snacking by the handful.  

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    The farmers market snakes around the Ferry Plaza Building, which is a recently renovated foodie landmark of its own. After winding through the marketplace, we found a spot outside at Ferry Plaza Seafood for fresh oysters and San Francisco’s own Anchor Steam Beer. With clear skies, a Bay Bridge view, and lots of people-watching, it was a lovely way to spend an afternoon in the “city by the bay,” to quote one of my favorite 80’s bands. 

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