Sunday, September 12, 2010

Just Can't Get Enough

I escaped to San Francisco again this weekend and it wasn't even my idea.
Friday night my dad invited the Mr. and I to a Linguica Dinner at the local Elk's Lodge. For those that don't know I am an Elk, my dad is an Elk and my grandfather was an Elk...its kinda our thing. I wish I was a better Elk than I am. I am already late with my dues for this year and I have not volunteered for one event. Oktoberfest is coming up, maybe I will volunteer to help out then....Sorry, rambling...
We all had a little too much fun at the lodge that night and ended up shutting the place down. The next morning I woke with a start because I thought my cupcake order was due Saturday morning. Come to find out it was for the next day. Now I am awake, dressed and bored. The Mr. was awake as well and he casually said to me 'You wanna do something today'
Me: 'Kinda...what were you thinking?'
Mr.: 'I dunno, fishing or something...'
Me: 'Eh, I don't really want to go fishing...'
Mr.: 'How about San Fran...?
Me: ' don't have to tell me twice!'
I was up, on the computer checking out day trip ideas before he could even finish his sentence.
I have a book titled 'San Francisco, As You Like It' by Bonnie Wach. I love this book because it maps out wonderful day guides specific to the type of person that is visiting the city and what their interests are. Of course I want to take every single guides but I thought it was a perfect reference for someone like my husband because lots of times he is very anti-San Francisco (I have no idea what is wrong with him either). Of all days I could not find my copy so we ended up winging it. First stop was my brother's just to say a quick 'Hello' and then off to Union Square. On the way there we decided to first go to the Farmer's Market at the Ferry Building and then to Chinatown. I parked in a garage in Union Square and we walked down to the market. Last time we were there we spent way too much money. This time we took a different approach. We spent a little money just sampling things. We each had an oyster for $1.50 a piece at the San Francisco Fish Company. The Mr. also had a clam for the same price. The oyster was amazing and so fresh. The Mr. said that he thought so as well and actually enjoyed the clam more.  Next stop was the Cowgirl Creamery. I can't begin to describe the smells wafting out of that place. It was incredible. I could have stood in line there all day.   We were going to buy a little sample of cheese (he wanted a Sharp Cheddar while I was eyeballing the Smoked Gouda) but the line was a little too long for us so we moved one. We passed Sharffen Berger Chocolate (which I have already tried and know how good it is) and Far West Fungi. We stopped at Boccalone and made the most expensive purchase that we made all day there. The Mr. bought a salami gift pack for $25. Miette was there as well and I can't pass that place up without buying at least two macarons. This time it was the Chocolate Lavender and the Chocolate Hazelnut. I think the hazelnut was my favorite this time...mmm....

We made it out of the market without spending all that much money and still feel that we got the full effect. I was starving and begged the Mr. to take me to lunch (although it was already around 3:00 at this point). We took the cable car up California to Grant to get to Chinatown. Many tourists don't realize that at California and Embarcadero the cable car that runs at that stop rarely draws the same crowd as the one at the  Powell stop at the base of Union Square. I hadn't ridden a cable car since I was about six years old and for $5 we spared ourselves a couple of blocks of walking uphill and enjoyed a San Francisco must-do at the same time.

We wandered around Chinatown for a bit before deciding to stop to eat at Yee's Restaurant. Walking into that restaurant was like walking into another world. Plates and plates of food was laid out on several tables when you first walk in and the smells were unbelievable. We were able to get a seat in the back and decided to split three plates. We had the Roast Pig, Broccoli with Oyster Sauce and Yee's Pan Fried Noodles. We ate like kings, had more than enough food left over to take home and were pleasantly surprised when our bill only came to be $24.00 for the both of us. We walked up to Broadway and I wished that I had enough room in my stomach for a little dessert because in Little Italy that is where you go to get amazing desserts. Unfortunately there was no room left. We walked back into Chinatown and stopped in a pet store that had a huge selection of fish. I told the Mr. that 'Who needs to spend $40 at the aquarium when we can go the Chinatown aquarium for free?'. We slowly made our way back to Union Square stopping along the way to look into all the fresh fish markets that dotted Stockton, the best ones being near Stockton and Pacific. The Mr. found a place to buy a few pork buns on Stockton as well.

After grabbing a quick coffee to get me through drive home, we made it back to our car. I was fully prepared to pay $40 for our fare but I must have read the sign wrong when we parked because our fare was only $14.00. We were back on the freeway in no time. Crossing the bridge and heading home I could see the sun start to set and a wisp of fog start to roll in and hover over the bay in my rear view mirror. I just can't get enough.
I forgot to mention this because it seemed so fleeting. While the Mr. was popped into a fish mart on Stockton I waited outside. All of a sudden I heard 'God Bless America' coming from half a block away. At the corner was a police escort directing traffic. When the song was over, the band quickly dispersed. Some left in convertibles directed by the police while others scattered on foot, headed in the opposite direction of other band mates. It really was the strangest thing.
Last thought I promise...
Below are pics of this weeks cupcake order. I used my cinnamon recipe and my chocolate recipe with a new chocolate frosting recipe that I liked much more than the one I posted previously. It was for a baby shower that a friend of mine hosted.
Very Chocolate Frosting
2 oz (1/2 stick) of butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
3 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder
3 Tablespoon hot milk or water (I used coffee left over from this morning)
Whip butter until lightly fluffy. Mix together powdered sugar and cocoa power. Mix in half the sugar and cocoa into butter. Add the other liquids (milk, water, or coffee in my case) Mix in remaining sugar and cocoa until desired consistency is reached.

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