Like most people I truly enjoy weekends. I especially enjoy days that are filled with doing my favorite things. Here are a few of them…
I’m a super early bird and today I was up by 6:15 am. Lately there has been so much excitement that I can’t possibly bear to sleep in. I took my time in the kitchen and made a scrumptious breakfast. Scrambled eggs with mushrooms, zucchini, and spinach. As my sweet side I ate a small bowl of cottage cheese and strawberries topped with almonds. Yum!
Just before noon I began my walk to my local farmer’s market (which is a lovely mile from my apartment) and munched on an apple on the way there. My first purchase was my uber favorite salad mix provided by Happy Boy Farms. It is a mix of edible flowers and baby mixed greens.
With such a mix of beautiful colors how could this not be someone’s favorite choice for a salad??? Even if I’m set on produce for the week, I usually make sure to stop by the market to grab a bag of these beauties.
They seriously make a bowl of salad look like candy!! By the time I got home I was starving. I quickly whipped up a salad with apricots, mozzarella, a side of hummus, and freshly toasted pita.
Coffee and Pastries
With lunch accomplished, I headed out to meet Flautamom for coffee. She and I have very similar food philosophies. If we’re going to indulge in sweets it has to be something made with love and thought, featuring real ingredients. Nothing mindlessly mass produced. Our stop was the Market Hall Bakery in the Rockridge neighborhood of Oakland. Everything in the pastry case looked so amazingly mouthwatering. It took us several minutes to settle on our choices. As we often end up doing, we selected a small sample of several treats and split them. It’s a great way to taste a little bit of everything without over-indulging. Remember, portion control one bite at a time!!
We tried their chocolate rugelach. We didn’t like it. It was lacking in, well…. chocolate!!!
Our next two bites were the pumpkin drop cookies. I couldn’t pass up a taste, I love pumpkin. Bad decision. It evoked the smokiness of fall, it felt wrong, this cookie was living in the wrong season.
Our favorite for the day was their almond meringue. WOW! This was perfect!!
I was sooooo tempted to buy a few more and eat more than my allotted half. But, since we had already tried bites of the other cookies, I simply had to savor every almond sliver and each meringue granule.
I completely deconstructed this morsel. It seriously took me 10 minutes to finish my 4×2 inch bit. But these are the moments that allow you to slow down and truly enjoy your favorite things.
Chocolate, Cheese, and Tea
In addition to a bakery and a cafe, Market Hall also has a small produce store featuring some of the most tantalizing products. I love shopping for food, it’s pretty much a hobby. I walked out with a box of cocoa nibs (for my next baking project), a wedge of Northern Gold California cheese (made from grass-fed cow’s milk), and a can of Earl Grey loose leaf tea.
Earl Grey (in addition to mint and jasmine) is one of my favorite tea blends. I totally splurged on this purchase. Earl Grey French Blue. Mariage Freres. I have to admit I was seduced by the packaging (I’m a sucker for the aesthetically appealing), it came in a black metal tin with an ivory label straight from the Victorian era.
“The fragrance and adventure of poetry endlessly pervades each cup of tea” -Henri Mariage
And that is exactly what I felt when I inhaled its essence. Besides, it was sprinkled with blue flowers. Did I mention blue is my favorite color? Two favorites coupled in one adorable package. The $21.95 seemed justifiable.
As if I couldn’t handle anymore favorites… one of our local independent bookstores was located right across the street. Pegasus Books.
Flautamom and I both being total bookworms thought it necessary to stop in to browse. Unbelievably I managed to walk out without buying a single book. Amazing. When it comes to bookstores, I’m like an addict in a crack-house. My hand twitched every time I handled a new title. But I kept myself in check with the reminder that I had a newly acquired stack of books to read at home, among them several cookbooks. Walk away. Remember portion control! Yes, I have to exercise this strategy with books as well.
So, now its time to try a cup of that newly acquired French tea and enjoy the ultimate favorite pastime, curling up with a book. Now reading: Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food.What are some of your favorite indulgences??