Saturday... Breakfast on the Bay

Fried Chicken Breakfast Sandwich w/ 
Fried Egg, Coriander Aioli, and Fresh Peppercress

 Here's the wonderful breakfast I had this morning while enjoying the view of the Bay with an old friend.
This sandwich is from 4505 Meats out of San Francisco. They have high quality meats and an extremely tasty menu for a farmers market.

4505 Meats Website
 4505 Meats @Farmers Market


Creminelli Fine Meats - Salumi!!

SALUMI - A generic term for deli meats in Italy.

These are the days when I love my job! I had the pleasure of meeting a true Italian salami maker by the name of Cristiano Creminelli. I was at a work meeting where we had a sampling of some of the finest salted pork charcuterie/deli items I have ever had. Cristiano came straight from Italy to produce different traditional artisan style salamis and sausages for Americans to enjoy. By using the best pork and spices available, the highest quality products are created.

To be honest, when I tried the pancetta, it just melted in my mouth with deliciousness. The other items I tried had unbelievable mouth feel and texture that was way superior to deli meats I have tasted on the market. I know there are some great salumi products that come from some smaller producers around the country that compare to the Creminelli product. But the scale that this gentleman is going to take his company is far beyond any artisan charcuterie producer today.

 If you are interested, check these links out!

 The Roots Of Italian Salami: Creminelli Fine Meats Video


A Shanghai Delicacy, Hairy Crab!?

Have you ever seen or even heard about a hairy crab?? Chinese people go crazy over these little hairy crustaceans. This fresh water creature is native to parts of Korea and China. The hairy crab is also known as the Dahza crab or Chinese mitten crab.  

I had this particular crab in Shanghai while I was on visit in October of 2008. My friends and I took a train from Shanghai to Wuxi. There we met up with my a local friend and toured the only city that I visited, that I actually consider beautiful in China. I mean beautiful in a environmental sense. Wuxi was on a huge lake, surrounded by lots of trees. The air, roads, buildings were much cleaner, and people seemed more environmentally conscious. We ended up getting about a dozen of these little guys and brought them back on the train to Shanghai. When we got back to our apartment our in home helper cooked them up for us. I had no idea how these were traditionally prepared.  She was so amazed that we had these crabs that she had never tasted before, and let alone have a dozen in right in front of her. 

These are a delicacy in this region of China from about September into December. Traditionally these are delicately steamed and then complimented with ginger pieces in a sweet vinegar. These crabs are completely different than what I'm used to back at home. For starters, the size is not the same. I'm used to huge Alaskan King Crabs, or local Dungeness Crab. But then I realized these are not salt water crabs, and that they are fresh water and about the size of my palm isn't too disappointing at all. Secondly, these little guys were a little more difficult to eat because of their size, and being covered heavily with tiny hairs didn't make the situation very pleasant. But as soon as I cracked open my first claw, dipped it into the vinegar, and savoured my first piece I was hooked. I now knew what all the hype was around this crab. The difference between the salt water and fresh water was very clear. The perfectly tender crab meat was so sweet and succulent it made me look at crab in a whole new light.


Food Pic Fun!

I stumbled across some old pics that I wanted to share. These were taken about four years ago, in my kitchen. My friend and I used a garage lamp, and some poster board to create these. I think it's soon time for another photo session. I believe our skills have improved...