Who’s your Farmer?

January 27, 2010

This Fall/Winter I’ve tried to go to the Ballard Farmers Market prepared with a menu (of sorts). A while ago I wanted to make a pork roast but was disappointed that I could only find frozen at the farmer’s market, until I came across the friendly guys from Sea Breeze Farm on Vashon Island. They had a bone in pork shoulder ready to go. Grass fed and local. I couldn’t wait. They also sell homemade butter. What’s not to love?! Sean & I picked up the rest of our ingredients and made dinner with his brothers. The Pork Roast was by far the best menu item. We were all standing around what little leftovers were there at the end of the meal picking at it. I braised it with cider and onions (and stuffed it with lots of garlic cloves). So, so good. On the side we made potato gratin with goat cheese and shaved brussel sprouts.

Matt from SBF showing off his goodies:

Sean and his brother decided to make an upside down pear tart. It was delish!

Sea Breeze Farm also runs a restaurant called La Boucherie on Vashon Island. Everything they serve is grown, harvested and prepared on the property. Dinner here is going to be one of Sean’s Christmas gifts (once I am employed again!). I can’t wait. If you are a Seattelite and in Ballard on a Sunday afternoon you should stop by the Ballard Farmers Market for fantastic fresh, local foods, and cute dogs everywhere!

hori hori dig dig!

Cafe Besalu, oh how i love you

September 21, 2009

I love food and I hate running. This is a problem for me. I’ve had to get creative with my exercise routine in order to justify the food/wine I love. There are a few places in Seattle that I will return to again and again and again because they have nailed it, whatever it is. Besalu is one of those places.

Cafe Besalu is a little pastry shop in Ballard on 24th Ave. that smells like heaven when you walk by. People flock here each morning and wait in long lines for what can only be described as the most buttery, flakey, delicious pastries in Seattle. I can’t imagine a happier place to work; surrounded by the smell of baked goods, butter, dough, sweet fruits, savory treats and more butter…hello?!

I normally get the ham and swiss pastry, but yesterday I tried the onion and gruyere. It was delicious. I have a friend that sometimes talks to her food. And every once and a while when I am about to eat something amazing I pay homage to her by speaking to my food as well. “Hello lover…” Besalu pastries should be talked to. Each pastry is a little work of art and as such should be properly honored before being eaten! I could die happy right here.

hori hori dig dig!

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Portage Bay Cafe recently opened in Ballard. I learned my lesson the last time I tried the new Portage Bay Cafe in South Lake Union. I waited a while before attempting to have breaky at the new location so that all the kinks would be worked out. There is nothing worse than a bad breakfast experience!

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First, let’s discuss the toppings bar. I’ve never experienced such a thing before dining at Portage Bay. The toppings bar consists of a large bar-height table that is filled with large bowls of all things sweet and delicious. Whipped cream, butter, blueberries, strawberries, brown sugar, syrup, nuts (not my favorite as I am allergic, but for those of you who are nut fans…I gather you would enjoy it). You get the idea. Lord have mercy… I could just roll around on that table (sans nuts)!

There is always a line at PBC for this reason: the food is great. Breaky is a treat for me. I have a fruit smoothie every day during the week for breakfast, so having someone cook me eggs, bacon (you will often here me rant about how much I love bacon) and french toast is simply delightful. At PBC they serve you coffee while you wait, and they are kind enough to cover their entry way with posters of events happening around town. A little reading material for you. How nice. Today we sat at the bar, so we didn’t have to wait as long.

PBC is also just a hop, skip and jump from the Ballard Locks, so you can take a nice little stroll after your trip to the toppings bar. You can enjoy the gardens, fish ladder and watch the boats go through the locks (there is always some good boat drama!).

hori hori dig dig!

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