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5 Foods Friday: 5 Things to Eat at Outside Lands

12 Aug

For music, food and general San Francisco enthusiasts like myself, it really doesn’t get much better than the Outside Lands Festival.  With  great musical performances, an entire giant tent dedicated to wine and seeminlgy endless food offerings, my visit to SF’s annual music, food, wine and art festival is long overdue.  After disecting the “Taste of the Bay Area” lineup for this weekend… I’ve carefully chosen my top 5 must-try festival foods.

1.  Arepas – Pica Pica Maize Kitchen

Indigienous to mainlyVenezuela and Columbia – Arepas are a moist and tasty corn dough treat that are typically stuffed with melted cheese and meat.  They are easy to eat and walk around with and keep you full for awhile, a perfect festival food!

2.  Hawaiian Poke and Baja Shrimp Ceviche – Pacific Catch 

Typical poke consists of cubed raw yellowfin tuna that is mixed with soy sauce, sesame oil, seaweed and chili pepper.  It is full of dynamic flavors that serve to enhance the natural taste of the fresh tuna.  Pacific Catch has a famous restaurant in the Marina District of San Francisco that I’ve been wanting to try –  so as long as all this fresh raw fish is kept firmly on ice, I will most definitely be trying the poke and ceviche at this festival food stand.

3.  Uhhmazing chicken, beef and carnitas tacos and burritos – Gordo Taqueria

When I lived in the Bay Area during college, Gordo’s was THE spot to hit up for some real Mexican food that reminded me of my hometown, San Diego.  Gordo’s is a huge must for me!

4. Po’boys (Shrimp, BBQ Pork, Southern Fried Chicken) – Criolla Kitchen 

Even though these may get a little messy and difficult to eat while walking around a festival, good po’boys are crispy and always packed full of flavor.  The perfect po’boy must be eaten right away and it’s all about the freshness of the bread roll.

5.  Filet Mignon Sliders, Portobello Mushroom Sliders, BBQ drumsticks – Up & Under

I have a strange obsession with sliders and pretty much anything that’s cute and mini-sized (i.e. mini Tabasco bottles).  Sliders with filet mignon and portobellos + BBQ drumsticks…who can resist? I’ll take 2 of each please.

This weekend at Outside Lands, I will eat my heart out and dance my ass off.  I’ll be sure to report back with photos…

France and Italy continued…

13 Jun

A few more photos of my marvelous meals in the South of France and Cinque Terre, Italy!  These are all typical regional dishes that are guaranteed to make your mouth water.

Tomato Farci Provencale – stuffed tomato w/beef, parmesan, garlic, onions, sauteed veggies and provencal spices

Salade Chevre Chaud – Arugula, heirloom tomatoes, parmesan shavings, with warm goat cheese wrapped in puff pastry.

Socca –  Similar to a crepe.  Socca is made of chickpea flour, water, olive oil, rosemary, salt and pepper.  It’s perfect for a warm, savory breakfast.

Socca man hard at work!

Fresh from the woodfire oven…almost ready!

Oh wait, there’s more…socca man sells fresh pizza too.

Pissaladiere: Very popular in the south.  Pissaladiere is a light and flaky pastry type pizza that’s generally made with grilled onions (onions confit), anchovies, olives and fresh thyme.  Unfortunately, anchovies are one of the few things I don’t enjoy, so I had to remove it, but luckily my dad was there to pick up the anchovy slack.

Can’t go wrong with some serious charcuterie at the morning market in the old village of La Turbie.

Sanglier meat: Wild boar meat that tastes like a less pungent version of prosciutto.  Tasty over a bed of arugula.

Gambas w/pesto – Big ol shrimps from the Mediterranean Sea.

Panna cotta

Nutella Creme Brulee – seriously as amazing as it sounds.  Surprisingly light and not overly sweet.


Pan Bagnat: Raw veggies, green onions, hard boiled eggs, tuna and olive oil on a fresh baguette.  This sandwich is a very typical lunchtime meal in Nice.

Grilled Merguez (Spicy Lamb) Sandwich

Merguez sandwich: Served with dijon mustard and Harissa (spicy paste from North Africa)

Cinque Terre, Italy

I love Italy. I love pasta.

Penne alla arrabiata

Caprese Salad: Burrata (creamy mozzarella), tomato, basil and pesto

Ravioli with zucchini and sun-dried tomatoes 

Testaroli with pesto genovese


One Delish Dish does Côte d’Azur

6 Jun

The Streets of Vieux Nice

My family and I were fortunate enough to take some time off to travel to the South of France for my cousin’s wedding. The South is undoubtedly famous for its picturesque coastlines, impeccable building facades, lively Polly-Pocket sized streets and of course…its cuisine. Being that southerners have easy access to fresh seafood from the Mediterranean, as well as plenty of sunshine for their fresh herbs and locally grown produce, these regional traits lend themselves to the great food and leisurely lifestyle that exists in this region. Honestly, if I only ate a fresh baguette from around the corner with a different kind of wine and cheese everyday I’d be ecstatic in my dairy and vino induced coma – but I decided that it may be better to venture out and explore what the South has to offer. We started our trip in Vieux Nice (Old Nice) and I loved every minute of it, the food and markets were great, the sea was picture perfect, plus it had the best Gelato outside of Italy. As my dad always says, “I know the world frequently has a lot to say about the French, but when it comes to food, wine, cheese and desserts they truly know what they’re doing and they always have.”

Waiting for our great dinner at La Favola. I probably would have been smiling if my stomach wasn’t eating itself.

Focaccia de Jambon Cru (Focaccia bread topped with veggies and prosciutto). Drizzled some olive oil and balsamic on top - super fresh and tasty.

Salad w/prosciutto, provolone, tomatoes, mozzarella, avocado and melon

Amazing baked rigatoni with eggplant and emmental cheese

More rigatoni cheesiness

Fresh seafood pasta w/mussels, squid, clams and shrimp in a light olive oil, white wine, tomato and garlic sauce

Super popular French meal - Steak frites w/ a béarnaise sauce (a derivative of a Hollandaise sauce, made with butter, eggs, shallots, tarragon, peppercorn and herbs)

After dinner treat - on our way to find the famous gelato spot.

Gelato at Finocchio. Master gelato makers.

Gelato at Finocchio

Enfin - gelato!

Fenocchio bustling at midnight

Le Quebec - the best pizza place in town

Pizza Niçoise: Black olives, capers, anchovies and oregano

Pizza Niçoise and salad Niçoise are particular to the town of Nice since these small black olives grow specifically in this region. The sun and terrain here are great for the growth and longevity of olive trees, many around this area produce for an average of 300 years. In the neighboring town of Menton, there’s even a tree that has been alive for 1,000+ years.

Meet the man responsible for it all

…and his workshop

Hungry brother Alex

Spicy Sausage Pizza

Of course, a nice rosé to wash it all down. These Frenchies know good and well that a little mid-day drink never hurt anybody.

View of the Mediterranean from the Promenade des Anglais

For those of you who know me and for those of you who don’t, it’s probably obvious by now that between this post and my Little Next Door post, I have a slight love affair with France. It’s true, I admire the French because of how they genuinely enjoy life, and for that – I think they are worth a shout out or two. Really though, who can deny a life of 7 weeks of government mandated vacation time or spending 6 hours in a cafe catching up with an old friend over a Croque-Monsieur, pommes frites, 15 espressos and a pack of cigarettes? Certainly not moi. Stay tuned for more from France!

Please adopt me Tony Bourdain!

3 Apr

Bourdain’s No Reservations trip to Vietnam where he discovers some Cao Lao to die for and feasts on an amazing Banh Mi

For those of you that don’t already know of my minor obsession…for me, Anthony Bourdain is the ultimate bad ass chef and food connoisseur.  He is an author and world-traveler with an honest, unbridled passion for food and cooking.  Bourdain went from working in seafood restaurants in college, to running some of the greatest restaurant kitchens in New York City. Nowadays, Bourdain mainly focuses on his show, No Reservations, where he travels to far off lands and immerses himself in the history, customs and cuisines of the locals.  Whether he is writing, cooking, traveling or chowing down on some good eats, Bourdain always stays true to his dynamic convictions regarding life and cooking, and above all, the man can spot quality cuisine anywhere in the world.

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