Sunday, September 18, 2011

Good Food, Indeed

I spent yesterday morning and part of the afternoon at the Good Food Street Fair in Santa Monica, and came away tired, happy, significantly poorer and very, very full! Some snapshots of the day:

The campus of Santa Monica High School, full of happy people eating and browsing. The Street Fair, part of the week-long Good Food Festival, featured lots of local artisan food producers peddling their wares (with samples galore, yippie!), plus talks and chef demonstrations:


The first thing you are greeted with upon entering, however, is the lovely sight of a bunch of food trucks all lined up waiting to serve. And in LA, street food doesn't just mean tacos, though they did have those:

Beef and pork from happy cows and happy pigs (until they became tacos).

If tacos aren't your thing, never fear! There's plenty of choices.

Lasagna cupcakes, perhaps?

That trifle sure looks pretty... no one said you can't have dessert for lunch! 

There was so much more, too: french fries, grilled cheese sandwiches, veggie burgers, frozen yogurt - it was all a bit overwhelming. So what did I end up eating for lunch?

Yes, a hot dog, my first in I don't even know how long...maybe seven years? Maybe longer? Full disclosure: I only even considered eating this because it was free. Never turn down free food, is my motto. And I must say, it was a really good hot dog. Probably because it was made by these guys:

And they only use good quality meat with nothing icky added to it. My one complaint was that the hot dog was kind of small, so the bun-to-dog ratio was a bit off-kilter. But on the plus side, a small hot dog means more room for samples!

There were lots of yummy things for sale, such as:

Macarons are kind of a thing right now, in case you didn't know. I was tempted, but then I saw these:

Cupcakes, trendy but tasty! I tried the vegan carrot cupcake with tofu frosting (surprisingly awesome) and the chocolate-bacon* cupcake (very good, but no bacon flavor to speak of, to me at least), but settled on the classic red velvet for Todd, who arrived home from Arizona the next day (I'm such a good girlfriend, I know). The nice man who sold it to me also let me try one of their "truffles," which are actually balls of red velvet cake dipped in chocolate. Genius!

*Bacon in desserts is also a thing - there was a stand selling creme brulee and bread pudding that had caramel-bacon bread pudding as an option. I tried some, and again, lots of sweet caramel, almost no bacon flavor detected...are you supposed to not taste the bacon in these desserts? Would it be disgusting if you actually tasted bacon, and places are just kind of slipping it in there to be fashionable? Anyone know? Anyone?

Even I can't just focus on sweets, however, especially when there's...


Smoked fish pate! I love me some smoked fish (daddy's girl), but these were quite expensive. Luckily, another booth was offering salmon salad lettuce cups for free:

If I was independently wealthy I would have bought all those fish pates and every single jam sold by every single vendor. 

Oh jam, I love you so, if only you weren't eight freaking dollars a jar...

It's also good to keep it healthy once in a while with some fruit. The last of the plums are coming ripe, and you can bet I snagged one of those.

I also continued my recent obsession with figs with this eeny weeny tart:

(This was accompanied by an eeny weeny agave cupcake w/ mascarpone frosting and an eeny weeny toffee nut bar...yeah, did I mention I was really full?)

I also scored a pint of some new (to me at least) kind of figs in a pretty shade of green:

Shopping is thirsty work, so I hydrated with a bottle of Cuties Tangerine Juice:

Tasted pretty much like orange juice to me, but it was quite tasty nonetheless (Did anyone else know that clementines and mandarins were types of tangerine? Cause I sure didn't...). This same company also makes tangerine-based juice smoothies - the tangerine-kiwi, although a rather unappetizing shade of green, was also quite good, and made for a necessary refresher as the day was warming up considerably. In fact, by that point I was hot and tired and ready to gather up my loot and head home. Want to see what I got, besides figs and cupcakes, that is? Of course you do!

Nature's Path granola and granola bar (these were free).

Fat Uncle Farms almonds in Garlic & Herb and Ass-Kickin' Ginger (hee!).

Cheeeeese! Two flavors of goat cheese (Apricot & Honey and Garlic & Onion) from Drake Family Farms, and smoked cheddar from, um, somewhere else...

Pumpkin butter from It Began in the Garden. Tastes like fall. Also quite pricey, especially considering I could probably get it at Trader Joe's soon for half the cost, but the older man working the stand was so sweet and enthusiastic, letting me try all different jellies and things, that I just had to buy a jar. Plus, look at the stand it came from:

Like a little garden itself. They had some interesting jellies made from flowers like lavender and wisteria. Not bad, but reminded me a little of eating soap. I guess I prefer my jams to be made of, you know, food...

Speaking of which, here's the last of my loot:

Thats Plum & Fig Turshi (a kind of Persian condiment) and Pineapple-Kiwi-Mango Jam from Grace & I. The little jar on top is a complimentary Mango Turshi I got for buying two jars.

I can't wait to try out all my stuff! I'm sensing a picnic dinner in our future...

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