Around the World in 11 Plates

To say I’ve lived a nomadic lifestyle over the past 2 months would be an understatement. But the silver lining of traveling more than I’ve been at home is the plethora of amazing dishes that inspire future kitchen endeavors. Here’s my world tour, also captured on FoodSpotting for fellow foodie paparazzi.

Chapter 1 – I Left My Sandwich in San Francisco

Mortadella Sandwich @ Salumeria

Mortadella Sandwich at Salumeria in San Francisco’s Mission District. Love the seasonal menu and “urban rustic” salvaged wood tables and decor. They also have locally produced bread, cured meats and gourmet goodies for purchase.

Turkey Sandwich With Bacon, Cheddar, Sundried Tomatoes And Dijon @ Chevron

No joke, this Turkey Sandwich With Bacon, Cheddar, Sundried Tomatoes and Dijon comes from a gas station! Tower Car Wash on the corner of Mission and Van Ness in San Francisco.

Grilled Cheese Sandwich @ Local: Mission Eatery

My last San Francisco sandwich comes from Local Mission Eatery. While the grilled cheese was delightful, I can’t say enough about the intimate environment with a laser focus on local, curated by a very thoughtful executive chef and pastry chef 😉

Pub Reuben @ Squaters Pub
Last but not least, if you ever find yourself in the Salt Lake City airport craving a beer, have no fear. Squatter’s Pub will take care of you. Paired with a Chasing Tail Golden Ale, this Pub Reuben was delightful during my long layover.

Chapter 2 – J’aime Paris

Saute Seau De Marengo Tagliatelle @ Bouillon Racine

It’s no secret that I love shredded meat on pasta. But I was pleasantly surprised to find such a combination in an Art Nouveau original, Bouillon Racine. The Saute Seau de Marengo Tagliatelle… je meurs!

Chicken @ Atelier Maître Albert

I wasn’t expecting to taste Thanksgiving while abroad, but that was the collective sense when we feasted on this lovely chicken at Atelier Maitre Albert. And along with Bouillon Racine, it helped seal St. Germain as my new favorite neighborhood in Paris.

Couscous Monaco @ Exki Cafe Terminal 2E

Leave it to the Parisians to serve delightful food at the airport. This Couscous Monaco from the Exki Cafe featured smoked salmon, cucumbers, raisins and dill. Ideal for easing into a long transcontinental flight home.

Chapter 3 – Seafood in the Desert


If you blink you might miss Adele’s while driving through downtown Carson City. But once inside, you’re greeted by a cozy fireplace and Victorian decor. The menu doesn’t disappoint, and everything’s made from scratch using local, sustainable, organic ingredients. I enjoyed the House Dry Smoked Salmon Crepe with Chèvre and Fresh Dill.

Whole Wheat Pomodoro @ The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa

When you’re on the road and in meetings all day, there’s nothing better than room service while you rest your feet. Even better if it doesn’t taste like a plate of pure sodium. Such was the case at Scottsdale’s Westin Kierland Resort, where I dined on this hearty Whole Wheat Pomodoro with Shrimp.

Smoked Salmon Bruschetta @ The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa

This generous serving of Smoked Salmon Bruschetta at the Westin’s Rim Lobby Lounge helped me prepare for a long night of networking over cocktails.


It doesn’t get better than being served delicious Fish Tacos poolside at the Hotel Viceroy in Palm Springs. Unless you count the sliders and mini mac & cheese served at Karie & Joe’s wedding reception. Devoured too fast for a photo!

And now, lots of Sacramento foodie adventures await…

Meal ‘n Steal: $5 Banh Mi Sandwich

Today I was introduced to a whole new world inside of Duc Loi Supermarket in the Mission. They carry all kinds of local produce, organic products and wine, for a fraction of the price of fancier gourmet shops. But what we really came for was the Banh Mi Sandwich from the deli counter. At just $5 a pop, you get an entire meal in one sandwich – and bite by bite, it lived up to its rep.

Banh Mi Sandwich @ Duc Loi Supermarket

So what’s in a Banh Mi sandwich? Five kinds of meat: pork pot roast, liverwurst, pork roll, head cheese and pork belly. But here’s the kicker, all that rich protein is balanced with carrots, jicama, cilantro, cucumber, daikon, and jalapeno – served on French bread.


Oh, and I walked out with a bunch of green onions for $0.49. Can you think of anything that costs less than a $1 at the grocery store? Me neither. Consider me a convert!

Gourmet Street Food

This weekend’s SF Street Food Festival (@streetfoodsf) was proof that gourmet-style “taco trucks” are sweeping the nation. I blame the fried local goodness devoured by Anthony Bourdain for the last 4+ years on “No Reservations,” a propensity for mobile lunches and speedy lunch breaks, and a new breed of foodie entrepreneurs cooking and tweeting in cities across America.

Regardless of the cause, San Francisco is the perfect incubator for this growing trend. I had the pleasure of hitting the “streets” for the SF festival on Saturday with David and friends, and devoured everything I could get my hands on until my stomach couldn’t take it.

Highlights and special thanks go to 4505 Meats for the insane heirloom tomato cheeseburger, Slanted Door for the generously portioned vegetarian bun, Chez Papa Resto for the decadent blue cheese stuffed figs, FoodSpotting for the slick T-shirt and Local Mission Eatery for the killer BLT and hospitality.

I couldn’t resist this pic of Angela with her beloved falafel, but most of the other treats disappeared too quickly to capture on film.

Add to: Facebook | Digg | | Stumbleupon | Reddit | Blinklist | Twitter | Technorati | Yahoo Buzz | Newsvine

Ferry Building on a Budget

Oysters + pasta = SF Ferry Building for $10 or less. If you’re willing to brave the elements (namely crowds), a quick trip to the SF Ferry Plaza Farmer’s Market can be completed on a budget. Parking not included – but if you’re lucky, you’ll get beautiful weather and an incredible view as a free bonus.

First, head outside to “The Pasta Shop,” which makes handmade egg noodles and other pasta in Berkeley. For $4.00, you can get sheets of freshly made egg noodles.

Next, head inside and weave your way to the oyster cart along the main aisle of the indoor terminal. For $1.50 a pop, you can feast on 4 oysters on the half shell, for a grand total of $10.00. Don’t forget cash!

Add to: Facebook | Digg | | Stumbleupon | Reddit | Blinklist | Twitter | Technorati | Yahoo Buzz | Newsvine

Sunday Dinner at the Beach

After a failed, sand-swept attempt to visit Ocean Beach this afternoon, David and I found ourselves at Beach Chalet, just in time for “Crab Week.” We cracked our way through incredibly fresh crab (in season!), served handsomely in its shell for $25. Although we left with messy hands, you can’t beat a dish-free kitchen on Sunday!


Add to: Facebook | Digg | | Stumbleupon | Reddit | Blinklist | Twitter | Technorati | Yahoo Buzz | Newsvine

Dinner with David – Feb. 19, 2009

I love to cook, but I don’t have a lot of time to plan out my menus (especially during the week). The purpose of this blog is to recap what I throw together on busy weeknights or lax weekends, so I can inspire others and archive my successes.

My debut dinner recipe: Leftover egg noodles (a well-spent $4 from The Pasta Shop, sold at San Francisco’s Ferry Building Farmer’s Market) with sauteed bell peppers (added Wednesday night!) and ground turkey meatballs (added tonight, see below).

I first learned how to make homemade meatballs from Everyday Food and it’s really pretty simple once you learn the principles (ground turkey or beef, bread crumbs, egg). For tonight, I combined:

1 package Foster Farms Ground Turkey – Lean

1 Thomas English Muffin, crumbled by hand

1 egg

Salt and pepper, to taste

Topped with:

2 tablespoons, Capellino Pesto Pine Nut Sauce

After combining the first four ingredients in a bowl by hand, I shaped 1-inch meatballs and put them in a pan with about a tablespoon of olive oil. It took about 10-15 minutes of flipping the meatballs until browned throughout, then I mixed them in with the leftover pasta, plus pesto sauce. The result was delicious!

Add to: Facebook | Digg | | Stumbleupon | Reddit | Blinklist | Twitter | Technorati | Yahoo Buzz | Newsvine