Posts tagged ‘supermarket’

Best Day Ever? Part I: Coffee and WFM

I knew that a day which began with 50 cent iced coffee from Dunkin’ Donuts would be a good one, but when I left the house Tuesday morning I underestimated just how good the day could be.  I managed to go to DD, Whole Foods, Fore Street and Gelato Fiasco on the same day (“Go big, or go home,” right? One only gets off the peninsula so often!)

After the (delicious, inexpensive, refreshing) coffee break, my Man and I headed to Portland (Maine, of course), to shop and eat lunch at Whole Foods Market. As I may have mentioned previously, WFM is currently one of my favorite places in the whole world.  I’d been ranting and raving about my plans to go for days; my parents officially think I’m crazy.  It’s possible I need to get a life.   My Man had never been there, so I was even more excited to show him around.  We had a good time, checking out all the food, discussing meal possibilities. I can’t fathom a time when I will go in there and beeline for the things I need and not browse every aisle. We picked up some good stuff including cornmeal for polenta, a marinated olive medley, rice noodles, whole wheat pasta, and greek yogurt. Definitely the most food I’d ever bought on a single trip.   That I also finally planned a trip which enabled me to eat lunch there was awesome. It’s so unfair to walk by all the salad bars and be unable to partake. My Man had some excellent chili and I had a salad with some yummy dumplings. I threw a few pieces of tofu in at his urging (for someone sometimes expresses hesitancy about my foodie-ness, he certainly is encouraging). I don’t think I’ll be picking up tofu on a regular basis, but it wasn’t bad. I’m just not sure tofu is for me. But at any rate, I can check off trying another new food.

Part II: Fore Street Restaurant and Gelato Fiasco

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April 23, 2009 at 8:14 am

Weekend Summary

So far so good, as the weekend goes.  On Friday, the family and I went to see celtic rock fusion band Enter the Haggis.   An excellent show as always (In my family, I’m the slacker with only 5 ETH concerts under my belt.  Check them out, they’re great.)  On the way to the show we stopped at Big G’s Deli in Winslow for dinner.  I have never seen more sandwich choices or bigger sandwiches in my life.  Not gourmet, but quality.

Yesterday I finally got my parents to Whole Foods (it’s over an hour away from home, so it is a bit of a feat).  Mom, once again, surprised me by being way more interested in all the store’s inventory.  Dad was surprisingly patient and may have even enjoyed the experience too.  Maybe its because our local supermarket is so…what’s the word? Limited… but Whole Foods really is an experience.  I purchased 2 tubs of Israeli (aka Middle Eastern) cous cous, which I love but have a hard time finding anywhere else.  Still trying to decide exactly what I’m going to do with it.  If I can get my act together in the future I may do more real shopping there.

This morning’s been starting out slowly, which is the way I like Sunday mornings.  Tea, hard boiled egg, toast.  I can’t remember the last time I had hard boiled egg, but I felt like making some.  Craving resolved.  Normally I’m an overachieving morning person, but sometimes its nice to just sit around and enjoy the day.  Church supper and service beginning at 4:45.  The only thing I have to accomplish between now and then is making cupcakes (possibly dyed green?) for debate club.

Finally, I loved this news story about reusable shopping bags which was on NECN this morning.  It’s wonderful to see that this is really catching on.  I’m so sick of the piles of plastic bags accumulating in my house.  Now, if only I could get in the habit of bringing my reusable bags into the store!

March 15, 2009 at 10:21 am

Anthony Bourdain is the man

I’m 85 pages into Kitchen Confidential and I’m enjoying it very much. Anthony Bourdain inspires me to spend more time in the kitchen, improving my craft (because “a good cook is a craftsman–not an artist”{pg 62} which is good, because my sister is the artsy one) and trying new things since “your body is not a temple, its an amusement park.  Enjoy the ride.” {pg 73}

I want to enjoy the ride.

As a result, I have the following plans for the week:

  • Watch “No Reservations”, because as Anthony Bourdain notes in his blog, the episode contains “Baby softshell crabs, slowly stewed cuttlefish, cooked in its own ink, sweet and sour sardines, pastas you’d cheerfully kill your own best friend for a taste of-and the best damn risotto I’ve ever had.  Eat first-or watching will be a torment.”  I can’t resist something like that.  However, unless something really earth shattering happens, I probably won’t be posting the play-by-play.  I’ve decided that television about food should also be savored and enjoyed, like food itself, and I’m losing something by trying to take notes and compose something in the moments after the show concludes.  But I still recommend “No Reservations” highly.
  • Make Rick Massa’s Ultimate Recipe Showdown winning “Cheese Lovers 5 Cheese Mac and Cheese”
  • Make Rachael Ray’s “Turkey Turnovers” from the February 2009 issue of her magazine

Mom and I went to the “real” grocery store, two towns away, today.  Let me warn you, 5 Cheese Mac and Cheese is not a cheap dish to create.  But overall, the experience was much more relaxing and sucessful than last week’s shopping trip.  I’m really excited about spending some time in the kitchen tomorrow and sharing how it goes.

January 10, 2009 at 8:21 pm

Cleaning out your kitchen

Mark Bittman (him again?!) recently wrote this piece on “items you might spurn, along with some essential pantry and long-keeping refrigerator items you might consider” when stocking your cabinets.  This article makes me want to throw out most of what’s in my cupboard…but it gave me a lot to think about, especially in regards to what I’ll be filling my pantry with once I get married.  Some of the suggestions, such as using olive oil instead of aerosol cooking spray, are so easy and make so much sense that I’m not sure why we have Pam in our house.  I’m a little overwhelmed by the notion of only using fresh spices, though I don’t deny their quality.  I think jarred spices will remain essential to my cooking.  I love the recommendation to use real Parmigiano-Reggiano instead of “shaky cheese,” especially since Bittman writes that it keeps for a year if wrapped well!

In other news which I hope is a sign of things to come, my mother purchased turkey cutlets for me at the supermarket yesterday, after I casually inquired whether or not our notoriously annoying store even carried them because I wanted to  make a recipe from the current issue of “Every Day with Rachael Ray”.  Who knew the store would actually have them and that my mother would get them for me!  It’s nice to be encouraged in my culinary ventures.

January 7, 2009 at 6:29 pm 1 comment

Not-so-super markets

One might think that the best way to make and eat food that I actually desire would be to go to the store and get it myself.  This always seems like a good plan until implementation.  First of all, I’m pretty sure it’s only necessary to go to the store once or twice a week, if all members of my household can get organized enough to decide what they want and put it on a list.  There’s only four of us, usually three, so to me it makes sense.  Easier said than done, however,  but I eventually get my parents to decide on what the leftovers already in the fridge are being used for via a very, very circular discussion.  I know there’s an element of driving me crazy just for the sake of it, but how to remedy that I’m not sure.  Maybe I’ll do something crazy like move out in six months.

At any rate, I decided to make this pasta dish I’ve done once before (because the leftovers were, after all, claimed for other purposes), wrote down the ingredients and headed to my local grocery store.  It was upon entering said institution that I recalled my hatred for grocery shopping, especially here in town. Reasons below:

  1. I hate shopping carts and think they should only be used when completely necessary.  My list was pretty short, so I grabbed a carry basket (or whatever they’re called) and set about my shopping.  Of course, I end up with more food than I can comfortably carry and spend a third of my trip looking foolish and frequently putting the basket down to rest my arms.  But I didn’t have to push one of those misaligned, big carts that don’t fit down the aisle when someone is coming up the other side.
  2. Something happens to people when they enter grocery stores in general.  It seems the majority of them think they’re in a museum.  They’re wandering up and down the aisles, looking around as though they’re never seen food before.  Armed with my list and a sense of purpose, I like to get in and out of supermarkets as fast as possible.  Result: I’m annoyed with pretty much every other shopper.
  3. In the defense of my dazed and confused co-shoppers, my supermarket is notorious for having a limited selection and discontinuing items with frustrating frequency.  So, as annoyed as I was, I too am standing at the meat display trying to determine if there’s any chance the supermarket carries ground sirloin (they didn’t).  The same applies to some varieties of pasta.   I understand that we live in a small town, but it’s frustrating.  And it adds to the general confusion and my specific frustration.

At any rate, I survived.  The point of all the foolishness of going to the supermarket is to get food and I did and I’m very excited about cooking it and having something yummy for lunch at school this week.  I also picked up the ingredients to make some black and white cookies with my sister that I can hopefully post the results of later.  Finally, I went to the library, where I do advocate browsing and taking one’s time, and checked out Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential which I am so excited to read.  Review to follow, of course.

January 4, 2009 at 10:20 am 1 comment


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