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Anna Blume

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  1. Stayed in Portland, OR to play after work brought me there. Visited the following and can elaborate at a later date if there is interest: Ned Ludd Perfect introduction to Portland scene--twee and chill, mostly glass structure hard to find since the tiny building is fronted by the peaked roof of a white tarp that protects a woodpile as large as the restaurant. Not sure 19th-century idealists did macrame, but that's what decorates interior walls along with copper molds that gleam under hanging brass lamps. Tables are separated from the kitchen by a barrier that resembles a woodpile. Meals are cooked within a large brick wood-burning oven by three bearded dudes wearing baseball/farmers hats so, of course, I ordered the unfiltered wine. Trout. Rhubarb crisp flavored with star-anise. Torre Bravo Highly recommend the tasting menu; great neighborhood favorite where sitting at the bar was lots of fun--got good recommendations for dining later in the week. Highlight: raddichio salad with green olive tapenade and charred toast. Grilled octopus tentacle draped over bright green fava beans. Flattened lamb chops and roasted half of an artichoke. Black truffles studding slab of duck mousse. Portland Farmers Market at PSU 140 farms, fisheries, and food-related businesses. Long, long harsh winter meant asparagus was still around, but so were local morels and porcini/boleti -te or tuses. Tiny Mt. Hood strawberries. Tayberries. The prettiest fava beans I ever did see--just bought a bunch to de-pod on a park bench for lunch. Pine State Biscuit for breakfast, but skip the Reggie Deluxe and go for something more basic to have room for the hash. Or join the burrito line. Or the ramen line near the guy with the truffles. Dried tart cherries came home with me--unsweetened. Pok Pok Salt & Caramel June's flavors conformed to recent trend of using vegetal parts normally tossed [on compost piles in this city]: celery root and strawberry leaf jam is an example. Crystal fragments in the ice creams I tried. Fifty Licks Since I was a fruit bat in a former life, I preferred this to the S&C closest to my B&B on Division. Bluebarb and tart cherry scoops were great as was the honey caramel. Blue Star Donuts Blueberry bourbon. No room for the Mexican Chocolate cake donut and they were out of the buttermilk. Ava Gene's Cherry and radish salad, amazing. Great rye cavatelli with porcini and broccoli. Andinia Sea scallops on a white rectangular plate, each ringed and held aloft by yellow potato puree and capped by quinoa-crusted passion fruit glaze. Parasol (part of the Biwa group) Disappointing. Farm Spirit Surprised and pleased to see the mention above. Loved this place, possibly the most. More later. Ken's Artisan Bakery Walnut roll, the best. Ken Forkish. Regret not having an evening to check out his pizzeria and another to compare it to Ascholl's. Meriwether's Broder's Cafe World Market Jacqueline's under a portrait of Bill Murray in tux and red wool cap. $1 oysters at Happy Hour every day of the week. Yes, there were pea shoots in the bowl of manila clams and they were good.
  2. While tiny, this market is a real pleasure. Fiddlers. Gold Rush apples. Smith Meadows.
  3. I should clarify this means that the farm bowed out early during the 2016 season and will not be participating in the shorter winter market of January through March as it typically does, alternating with Tree & Leaf as an organic grower, every other week during the leaner, cold months. [Please note that while Tree & Leaf is not certified as organic, Zach Lester is an organic grower.]
  4. Thanks. I will have to check out Del Ray. I think the Old Town market has the most beautiful site I've visited in these parts and there were at least two farms I respect and frequent as a shopper. There is something to be said for dedicated market spaces and I do wish D.C. were more accommodating in this respect. I also appreciated having Sur la Table right across the street and a lovely architectural/foliage scene to check out while heading to Duke Street, WFM, and back to the King St Metro. I am sure it's a good place to shop during the heart of the season. I ended up buying eggs from Coulter and then headed to Dupont Circle on Sunday for all my greens.
  5. Having kept off the pounds and with a loss of a few more, I am thinking that the best way to cope with this week's events involves lots of heavy cream, butter, pork shoulder, french fries, red wine, and pie.
  6. Unfamiliar with the Alexandria market scene, any advice for a newbie regarding the different farmers markets, or recommendations on farmers or producers to seek out would be welcome. Thanks.
  7. Hey. Not much action here, I see, but please note that Next Step Produce has announced plans to quit the farmers-market scene after November 20th. So if you are a plan, please drop by to wish the farm well, grab this year's crop of newly dried beans, freshly milled flour and so forth.
  8. I've done this in the processor and it works! And, Pat, I am too tired to check where you advised me on Giant for pinenuts, but in my neck of the woods, no luck! (Aurora brand is same old same old type). I will try another store. Thanks for tip.
  9. Any updates? I am looking for the elegant, paler (creamy vs. golden), tapered nuts that Whole Foods Markets used to get from Turkey or Spain. Contrasting with the teardrop/Candy-corn shape of most pine nuts found in the U.S., the pine nut I seek resembles a slendor, well-formed kibbeh: somewhat pointy or needle-like at both ends with a modestly protuberant middle. Virginia is too far away. DC or nearby MD.
  10. Now that I've reread these posts, let me add a shout-out to Mexican dishes that call for squash blossoms. Perhaps I wrote posts long ago in reference to Oyamel and Joe Raffa's incredible cooking demos at the Penn Quarter FRESHFARM Market when he was the chef and promoting the restaurant's annual Squash Blossom Festival. The beautiful, delicious soup still haunts me, though the tacos were great, too.
  11. Here's the topic that porcupine launched in cooking part of this forum .
  12. In A Platter of Figs and Other Recipes, David Tanis has a recipe for a salad that is good even though both rawovores and vegans would be able to partake of the dish: Sliver young zucchini lengthwise and toss them in a simple, lemony dressing (S, P & EVOO). Basil leaves if you'd like. Mint would be good, too, and I can't remember if there was an option of shards of parmesans if your table is r & v free. Best part is tossing the long, dressed strips of bright yellow, pale and dark green squash onto a serving dish in a big, pretty heap and then tearing fresh zucchini blossoms in large, petallike pieces to strew decoratively on top. ************ hv, your suggestions sound really lovely, but let me shrink and dressed in red satin w a pointy tail, sit on cg21's other shoulder and urge her to go ahead and fry a few more. Deep-frying isn't necessary. Just a fraction of a very hot inch of neutral oil and a pair of tongs within reach to turn the flowers over. Stick an anchovy fillet into some of the blossoms before dunking them into a tempora-like batter. Fleur de sel or some other crunchy salt and a glass of crisp, dry white. Then a platter of figs wrapped in prosciutto.
  13. I stopped buying pine nuts anywhere else since the introduction of those amazing, expensive Spanish or Turkish ones at Whole Foods. The supply is out now. Rockville acknowledges the fact and the bin in the bulk section is empty. You can still buy bags of the ubiquitous teardrop-shaped ones that are squatter, golden, and often taste beyond prime, so I opted out. In Friendship Heights last night, so I dropped in the store there only to find the less costly, inferior nuts in the bulk section being sold as Spanish pine nuts for $29.99 a pound! I am sure this was out of ignorance rather than deceit. Let's see if anyone bothers to correct the sign and price now that the store has been alerted to the problem.
  14. Wow. Interesting to compare this growing season to ones from the past. Some markets already have blueberries, thanks to Westmoreland's presence. Monavano spots apricots at Kuhn's. Last week brought the first raspberries I've seen to town along with sweet cherries, Bing and white (Early Robin). I've heard rumors of tart cherries coming to town this weekend, but I could have sworn corn and stone fruits never came to town until July. Go figure. Vegetables? Purple cauliflower arrived last weekend in abundance and will be around for another week or so. Anyone spied fava beans lately? It was their last week at Next Step Produce (Maryland) this past Sunday. Peas endure, mostly sugar snap. Newly dug potatoes fairly new presences, too.
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