Cheers To The Working Class

I have a few concerns and thoughts to go over with my small group of readers before I share the overwhelming amount of food consumed this weekend.

1. Happy Labor Day! Hopefully you got to take the day off work. Or, if you’re like myself, then you get a day off school even though you just started last week. Score!

2. Is it still a faux pas to wear white after Labor Day? I really hope not because I just ordered the cutest white pants from J.Crew’s labor day sale. Hmmm…maybe that is why they were on sale. Good thing San Francisco is not too judgmental about these sorts of things. I hope you will forgive me and I will try to remember next year.

3. Does anyone follow NPR’s instagram? I really enjoyed their ‘How To Make…’ dumpling series from all over the world. Check it out if you have time.

Saturday

Starting from Saturday, I was minding my own business at work when I received a phone call from of my favorite people ever, Bobby Moon. No, that’s not his real name but our little circle has called him that for so long now that anything else sounds preposterous. He told me he was on a ferry (wtf?) on the way to San Francisco and wanted to eat dim sum with a few mutual friends.

PS: It never occurred to me that people can take ship as their normal daily transportation. Bobby came up to visit from LA and his girlfriends family lives in the North Bay.

I have never been one to turn down dim sum nor do I have the ambition to change that so I was ecstatic and couldn’t wait to get off work.

I caught a Sidecar to Abby’s house and we walked over to Great Eastern in Chinatown and only had to wait twenty minutes! Ever since President Obama came to SF and ate here, the lines have been excruciating long so it was nice to not have to stake out early in the morning for a coveted number. Thank you Labor Day and the closure of the Bay Bridge!

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We ordered around 11 dishes between the four of us, but you can see all the dim sum from my post in Guangzhou. (I covered most of the essential plates over in that post.)

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Have you tried these egg custard tarts? We call them Dan Tat in Chinese and they are ridiculously amazing. Call me biased but I think the Chinese has the best pastries and deserts.

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After walking around and feeling like a tourist, we schlepped back to Abby’s house and I got to play a game of tug-o-war with my god son, Bailey.

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And then we dropped Bobby off at the Ferry Building, but decided to grab a bite to eat at Gott’s Roadhouse first. I want this sign for my room but I don’t know if I have enough wall space. Wouldn’t that be cool?

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He ordered a Gottspacho (gazpacho) to share with everyone, I might of guzzled down most of it when no one was looking. 🙂 If anyone is asking, I recommend to dip your fries in your gazpacho. Fire!

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I ordered the Green Chile Cheeseburger w/ jack cheese, lettuce, onions, salsa verde & charred jalapeño mayo on a toasted egg bun. The staff favorite was to substitute the beef patty with a turkey patty and I felt compelled to listen to the cashier. And it was delicious.

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Sunday

The sun was out, nobody had to work and it was a long weekend. So where do we start off our day?

Beretta, of course! Whenever I don’t see a line outside, I feel like it’s a rip off to not stop in. We were on our way to Dolores Park to enjoy the festivities when we decided that all of our stomachs could of used a little padding before getting crazy at the park.

The antipasti was beef carpaccio w/ arugula, parmesan and capers. What do you think about carpaccio? I’ve eaten out with people that both loved or hated it and it’s always one extreme or the other.

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Gnocchi Florentine w/ spinach, Italian ham, bechamel, tomato, parmesan and panagratatto. I love gnocchi (especially Beretta’s appetizer with porcini mushrooms & smoked pancetta) but I felt that these fell a little short of my expectations. The flavor was delicious and I can’t say anything bad about food ever because I love it, but it tasted more like mush then gnocchi.

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I love runny eggs so I was surprised when I realized I never had it on my pizza before! This was the carbonara w/ bacon, eggs, mozzarella, pecorino & cracked black pepper. Yum, I couldn’t get enough.

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Finally after feeling stuffed, we drove a few blocks to Dolores Park and got a good spot in front of a bunch of dudes playing volleyball.

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I can’t express enough how much I love Dolores. We had a a trio of high schoolers serenade us with their Caribbean steel drums.

1. When is the last time you have seen a steel drum?

2. What high schoolers even knows how to play one? I just imagine them going home after school to practice their set list and felt a little warm in the heart after.

3. Do you even know what a steel drum is?

Everyone started playing ladder ball and I was too tired to get up so I took a cat nap.

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I don’t have words to describe the next picture but look at the size of this water container. It is literally the size of two (2) normal human heads. You could fit 2 two-liter cokes into this huge thing.

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And for the grand finale, the highly coveted Ramenburger! 50% pork belly and 50% Wagyu patty between two Ramen noodle buns with shoyu sauce, cheddar and bacon.

Remember when I showed you how the Ramenburger sold out at La Cocina? Well, Abby and I did not put up well with that so we made everyone come and try it with us against their will. It was nice to be able to say that I ate it but I think this meal officially ended my obsession with the Ramenburger.

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Happy Labor Day again and hopefully everyone ate as well as I did!

PS: It is so hard to put a duvet on by yourself. Where is my +1 when I need one?

What did you do during the long weekend? Thoughts on the ramenburger, yes or no?

La Cocina

I had something important come in the mail today.

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But I can’t tell you about it until next Monday, sorry! To make up for my vagueness, I will show you something else that came in the mail!

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I have an obsession for books. Not just the stories in the books, but physically having a hard copy of a book. This is a reason why I don’t ever see myself getting a Kindle, no matter how convenient it is. There’s nothing like finishing the last line, closing the book and then letting out a big sigh. Right?

My sidebar has been showing the same book since I created this website. It haunts me every time I look at it because I forgot about it for three months and then got really lazy about updating it. It is next on my mental to-do list, I promise.

Since you are so interested in my history with books (read: falling asleep), I had to put a bunch in boxes because my small bookcase only allows me to showcase my newest or dearest ones. 🙁

I’m just going to wrap this up and tell you that my dream library has one brick wall and the rest of the walls are covered with books from floor to ceiling. That is all.

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Moving on, my coworker surprised me and bought me a bunch of my favorite Asian snacks. They’re probably filled with lead but they remind me of my sweet, sweet childhood. Have you ever had the pandas?! If you want a healthy option, one surprisingly healthy snack is popcorn. We don’t mean the one you buy at your local cinema. But one you make at home using a popcorn maker – check out this guide for more info as as they look at makers by brands like vonshef & more. When you prepare you own popcorn you can make it as healthy as you like. In fact many people ditch sugar all together when it comes to seasoning and use far healthier herbs and spices for a delicious savoury snack.

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La Cocina (the kitchen in Spanish) hosts a food festival every year to raise money for their community kitchen. This is actually my second time going and it’s my favorite festival ever. It makes sense because food+friends+more food+seeing drunk people dance is an equation for a good time.

They hold a vote every year for the public to decide which vendors are going to be at the fair, which I think is really fun and gives a great turn out. There is a variety of food trucks, restaurants and sponsors that set up their booths and give us an option for a little bite, big bite or drink.

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I started with a small bite, tostadita de tinga.

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Delicious, but it only got me pumped and ready to eat everything in site. I didn’t get to snap a picture of everything I ate, but I did also enjoy a Korean taco (which had seaweed instead of a tortilla) and a bite of some ceviche.

Not going to lie, it did get a little hectic moving around. It took around 20 minutes to move one block and the whole fair was seven blocks total.

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With over 80,000 people in attendance, food being sold out is bound to happen. Luckily Abby an I only waited in line for ~30 seconds before the scissors came out.

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We really wanted to try the ramen burger (the next Cronut) but the line was ridiculously long. I’m actually surprised it took them so long to sell out!

Instead, we used and abused these bad boys.

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The drink tokens were so nice that I wanted to take one home as a souvenir. However, for $5 a pop, it made more sense to let it go and enjoy the outcome.

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To be honest, this darling coconut was one of my favorite things there. Thank you Whole Foods, for the hydration.

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We really lucked out with the amazing weather, all the delicious food we ate and ridiculous side show attractions. Text me to see videos, please, they will make your day. 🙂

Oh, and can’t forget the pho rolls. Stop it.

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Sunday was a little less intense, I went on my long run in the morning and picked my mom up from the airport in the afternoon. She had a layover in SF for a few hours AND it was her birthday! Talk about lucky for me.

After my run, I went to my friend T’s house because she did a little personal shopping for me. On Friday night, we met up for late night drinks and I grumbled about how me working early on Saturday interfered with my Saturday Farmer’s Market food run. She practically forced me to let her buy my groceries and to pick them up during the weekend and I obliged. Okay, she didn’t force me but she was very insistent and it’s hard for me to say no when people are stern with me. 😉

Kale, baby bok choy, mushrooms, eggplant, avocados, peaches, grapes, tomtatoes, pita chips, hummus, bolani and peanut butter.

FOR. $12. DOLLARS!!!! I hit the Farmer’s Market jackpot! She’s been going to the Alemany FM for over five years so she knows where all the deals are and made friends with all the workers. Talk about my role model!

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Last but not least, a picture of my family. I took my mom to Limon and she had a blast.

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Aren’t those sunflowers gorgeous? She absolutely loved them!

Ramen burger, what are your thoughts? What’s your dream library (pictures are always welcome!)?