Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Summer Salad Finale With A Side Of Bacon

Last Sunday I got the chance to visit the Farmers Market for the first time in a month. That's what happens when I am forced to choose between oogling at veggies or shaking my booty at African Brazilian Dance class. Dancing is almost more addicting than food... almost. So why was this Sunday any different? Let's just say SOMEONE got an email from a farmer about a freshly slaughtered and extremely succulent pig whose parts would be sold at market. And perhaps BACON was one of those parts. Well booty shaking may trump squash, but Bacon blows butt thumping out the window. Especially bacon from an organically pampered and beautifully spoiled pig. If you aren't following I believe a reading of An ode to bacon is in order. This little piggy went to market and NEVER came home. MWAHAHAHA

Once I was there, I obviously wasn't leaving without picking up a few things. By the end my arms were filled with arugula, sprouts, heirloom tomatoes, onions, white peaches, yellow peaches, nectarines, plumbs, avocado, bagels, and of course, the fattiest whitest bacon I had ever layed eyes on.

I'm sure anyone living in the greater Los Angeles area remembers that day as the day we learned what it felt like to live inside a lizards mouth. And what did I decide to do that day? Yard work! Crazy? Perhaps, but would I have been inspired to create this deliciously refreshing salad? Perhaps not. Plus I had to make use of all the fresh veggies purchased only a few hours ago which were so tasty you hardly needed dressing. If this concoction can't cool you down, then nothing but an iced bath with Cruella Deville can. And with that I bid you a very fond farewell to grilling and hello to chilling.

A Cooling Farmer's Market Salad
1 avocado
1 heirloom tomato
1 cucumber
Sunflower sprouts
1/2 red onion finely chopped

1 lemon
1 tbs white wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
1 clove garlic minced

Whip up a vinaigrette by whisking a few teaspoons of vinegar, lemon juice, minced garlic and 1 tsp salt together. Continue whisking while you pour a slow stream of olive oil in (about 1/2 cup). Taste and adjust seasoning.

TIP: This is my favorite way to cut an avocado. When you spoon it out they are already nicely cubed.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Breakfast By The Sea

I know this is a little dated as it was from my visit to Big Sur and Carmel during Labor Day weekend, but this restaurant was too good a find to not mention. It's not often I find a true gem like this with fresh, organic, seasonal, and local ingredients. We ate breakfast here 3 days in a row. Can you see why?

Carmel Belle
Doud Craft Studios
Corner of Ocean and San Carlos
Carmel By The Sea
Spoondilicious Rating- 10 out of 10

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Eatin' at Street

Last week I had a bloggie date with my fellow foodie Mealmuse. The destination? Susan Feniger's newest ethnic venture- Street. A restaurant inspired by street food from around the world? LOVE IT! Since it's opening, I have been overly excited to take a trip to this eatery on Highland and experience some flavorful explosions.

The vibe was awesome. Unlike most restaurants in Los Angeles, it feels hip and funky with loud orange painted walls and a large outside dining area that glows red from the reflection of the awning. Fun hand painted art covers the walls and the bathroom is equipped with soap made from recycled and cleaned kitchen grease.

The food, I must admit, was good but a tad disappointing. That's usually what happens when I come in with the highest expectations. When I think of ethnic street food I think spice, explosions of flavor, perhaps exotic and a bit erotic. I want to take a bite and say "wow, that is incredible, I've never had anything like it!" Out of the six dishes we ordered, only one nailed it. Not surprisingly, it was the weirdest item on the menu. Toasted bread smothered in coconut jam with a side of soy sauce and a sunny side up egg for dipping. Crazy! I know, but also CRAZY good! The saltiness of soy sauce mixed with the sweetness of the coconut and richness of egg yolk made this dish ridiculously tasty. I had never tasted anything like it before.

I will say that the dishes were innovative. Ukrainian dumplings filled with cheesy spinach and smothered with lemon marmalade, were good but left something to be desired. Lamb meatballs drizzled with molasses had a nice kick to them and the Mexican ricotta noquis (steamed cheese dumplings in a tomatillo salsa) were nice but the wow factor wasn't there. The other dish that caught my attention was the black kale and white bean puree served with toasted bread and anchovy butter. To eat this I made a little tartine and spread the anchovy butter on the toast followed by the bean puree and then kale. I loved the first piece but went too heavy on the anchovy butter with the second and it was a little overwhelming.

I have a lot of respect for a restaurant as innovative as Street, especially since it strives to push the boundaries of Los Angeles cuisine. Street has some really interesting and unique dishes to offer and is a refreshing treat from the endless California inspired eateries that dominate LA. If you are looking for something new and fun I would take a trip to Street where you can travel the world and still be home in time for bed.

These savory snacks tasted exactly as if a rice krispy treat and a bowl of yellow curry had a baby. I would never order these but they come as a complimentary snack so you might as well try a few.

That is not a grilled cheese. Kaya Toast- Coconut jam toast dipped in soy sauce and egg. Absolutely amazing.

Ricotta dumplings, Ukranian dumplings, Lamb meatballs, Black Kale with white bean puree and anchovey butter

Ricotta steamed dumplings in tomatillo salsa

Susan Feniger's Street
742 North Highland Ave
Los Angeles CA 90038
Spoondlicious Rating: 8 out of 10


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