After too many days of muggy weather in New York, I am in San Francisco for a retreat from the heat. It's only been a few months since I moved to Manhattan, but this is my second visit back home. Needless to say, I miss dearly the beautiful foggy city by the bay.

Since I was staying with a very good family friend in North Beach, I began my day at my favorite neighborhood boulangerie with a decadent buttery and flaky strawberry cheese danish, and was quickly identified as a tourist when I was caught taking several photos of my breakfast.

After a few clicks, I was kindly invited to take a tour of the city on what else, but the iconic San Francisco trolley.

After learning lots of fun and interesting facts about the city, I stopped by at San Francisco's Civic Center farmers' market, which is held every Wednesdays.

Thai Chiles
Did you know that 53% of the population in San Francisco is of Asian descent? It's no wonder that this particular farmer's market had a such strong Asian influence.

Chinese Long Beans
I've never seen Chinese long beans with purple freckles, this must be a new hybrid.

Japanese Eggplants
These eggplants are great for grilling or stewing in curries.

As the name implies, this is a bitter vegetable. It is commonly stuffed with ground pork and served in a soup.

Another Bittermelon

This is another type of bitter melon as bitter as the one above it. A guy at the farm stand dared me to take a bite into it for $5, and you know, my momma didn't raise no dummy. I turned the tables and offered $10 if he took a bite into it. He didn't take it. Evidently, his momma didn't raise a dummy either.

Asian Sponge Gourd
As the name implies, this gourd is soft in texture. This squash is generally prepared in stir-fry or stewed in curries. If you dehydrate a mature version of this Asian sponge gourd, and peel off the exterior, it turns into a very popular bath accessory: the exfoliating loofah.

Fresh Dates
What are fresh dates like? Fresh dates are similar with a crunchy persimmon or apple in texture with a mildly sweet flavor, which is in stark contrast the molasses-sweet dried version. I enjoyed them for their novelty.

* A special thanks to Gloria for making this entire trip possible and Romeo for making the tour of San Francisco landmarks an incredible experience!


Anonymous said...

Hey girl have lots of fun and have another danish for me! But promise you'll come back to EC else we'll miss our girls' day in the city! Love yas....susannah :)

itsfrancis6 said...

it's kinda not fair that you get to see and taste all these great things whereas i'm stuck with bare minimums at school. hope you're doing well! i'm planning on trying your blue berry cobbler recipe in a few weeks after i'm done with finals