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Mariposa's Profile

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Where in SF can I buy key limes?

Thanks so much to everyone for your help!

Aug 20, 2010
Mariposa in San Francisco Bay Area

Where in SF can I buy key limes?

Thank you very much! I was at BevMo the other day so I picked up the bottled juice and will try that out first.

Aug 20, 2010
Mariposa in San Francisco Bay Area

Where in SF can I buy key limes?

I've checked my usual haunts (Rainbow, the produce market by my house) but thought I'd ask here before beginning to call around. Anyone know where I can get key limes? I'm not sure if they're a year-round or seasonal thing, but as far as I can tell summer is their season so they should be around at this time. Hopefully!

Unless you're a pie expert and know I should just use bottled key lime juice to make key lime pie (my first!). In that case, where can I buy key lime juice?

Thanks so much, fellow chowhounds!

Jul 27, 2010
Mariposa in San Francisco Bay Area

3 Restaurant Reccs needed: Specifics Within!

Thank you all so much for your help so far! I have made a list of all your recommendations and will start placing them on a map and checking menus. If you feel so inspired, keep the ideas coming, I just wanted to hop in with many thanks and gratitude!!

Jun 07, 2010
Mariposa in Los Angeles Area

3 Restaurant Reccs needed: Specifics Within!

Hello dear LA chowhounders! Longtime SF chowhounder here, throwing myself on the mercy of your wisdom and experience.

My family and I are getting together in LA during the 3rd week of June, and we have a passel of special needs and conflicting opinions about what and where to eat. I'm looking for suggestions for all three nights.

For all nights there will be one person who is vegan *and* gluten-free, and one person who only has the use of one rather shaky hand (this means she needs to eat stuff like risotto or stew that can be eaten with a spoon and will stick to the spoon, or Asian dishes with lots of cut up pieces that can be scooped up, or lamb chops or chicken prepared in such a way that it can be picked up to eat it, or finger-food. Anything that needs to be stabbed (like salad), cut (like most meat), or twirled (like pasta) is not doable for her.).

I am the vegan/GF person and as long as I can somehow meet my caloric intake for the evening I'm not particular. I'd love to go somewhere with awesome choices for me, but family harmony is MUCH more important to me on this trip than fine dining. Bonus points for any place of the sort that I can call a couple days ahead and ask them to prepare something that meets my needs, something which more "chef-y" restaurants are usually happy to do.

Several members of my family, including me, love restaurants which focus on fresh, local, seasonal food, and I know there's a great scene for that in LA these days, but probably not in our price range/the areas we'll be in. But anything like that would be very exciting. Being from SF I'm pretty comfortable with any cuisine, and as long as the food is good I think (I hope!) the rest of my family will be, too.

Restaurant #1: Something near LAX, in the price range of around $13/entree. We'll have our largest group of people this night, around 8-9. This night really won't be about the food, more about the company. The restaurant the LA-dwelling family member suggested for this night is Truxton's Westchester, but at the request of some other family members I am looking for something "better." What does that mean? I'm not too sure... Classier? More creative? Maybe not so much with the burgers and pizza?

Restaurant #2: Near the Ahmanson Theater, at the Music Center in Downtown LA. Something really delicious would be great on this night. We could go up to around $20 an entree.

Restaurant #3: We'll be in the 90025 zip code, which my Googling tells me is West LA/UCLA area. I think we could do up to around $20/entree this night, too, but more moderate would be better.

Thanks so much in advance. Any suggestions that seem like they might work would be so appreciated, and then I can go do the work of actually digging into the menus to make sure there's something that everyone can eat. If you ever come to SF, hopefully I can return the favor!

Jun 06, 2010
Mariposa in Los Angeles Area

What do vegans eat on Thanksgiving?

Wow, these all sound great. I am bookmarking this to come back to in a couple of days when we plan our T-day menu.

Nov 10, 2009
Mariposa in Home Cooking

Foolproof bean/lentil recipes you love to make again and again

Thanks, these all sound wonderful!

Nov 10, 2009
Mariposa in Home Cooking

Foolproof bean/lentil recipes you love to make again and again

This winter I am working on conquering my beanphobia. For too long beans, lentils, dried peas, and other pulses have loomed at the edge of my cooking consciousness, with their long soaking times, delicate constitutions (don't add salt! or tomatoes! or look at them funny!), and disturbing potential for gassiness.

I have a couple recipes that I've made enough times now that I know I can count on them. One is for French Lentil Soup, the other is for a red lentil dish that is somewhere between a salad, a soup, and dal. The internet is full of recipes for beans/lentils/etc. but I don't want to waste my time (and possibly cement my phobia) on an unverified recipe.

Do you have any great bean standards? Preferably recipes made with fairly common ingredients that are so delicious you find yourself making them over and over? I'm vegetarian and gluten-free, but if your favorite bean/lentil recipe isn't, I'd still love to know about it. I'm a good recipe adapter (although that's probably what gets me into trouble with the beans in the first place...).

Nov 10, 2009
Mariposa in Home Cooking

What do vegans eat on Thanksgiving?

Sadly that Quinoa Pie with Butternut Squash looks pretty but is also pretty bland. Review and photo here: http://inmybox.wordpress.com/2007/11/...

Oct 13, 2009
Mariposa in Home Cooking

What do vegans eat on Thanksgiving?

For a vegan entree, I would highly recommend Chow.com's Celery Root and Squash Gratin with Walnut-Thyme Streusel. Their recipe is vegetarian, not vegan, but I've converted it to vegan and gluten-free here: http://inmybox.wordpress.com/2008/12/... (scroll down for recipe) If you don't need to do gluten-free, just use regular (vegan) bread crumbs instead of GF ones. We made this last year and everyone at the table - vegans and meat-eaters alike - could not get enough of it. It's very rich, too, so a little portion goes a long way.

As far as the rest of the meal, here is the menu from last year's Thanksgiving, which was both vegan and gluten-free:
Appetizers:
Mushroom-walnut pate with Mary’s GF onion crackers
Homemade turnip pickles and sweet-and-spicy zucchini pickles
Assorted olives

The meal:
Blue corn muffins with green chiles
Pumpkin soup with coconut cream
Butternut squash and celeriac gratin with walnut-thyme streusel
Tempeh Marbella
Chard with pine nuts and raisins
Banana, sweet potato, and pomegranate casserole
Impressionist cauliflower
Mashed potatoes with shallots and shitake mushroom gravy
Green salad
Cranberry chutney
Canned cranberry sauce (gotta have it!

)

Dessert:
Poached pears in spiced red wine syrup
Chocolate mousse with whipped cream and fruit preserves
Ginger cookies

Photos and recipes are on my blog: http://inmybox.wordpress.com/2008/11/...

Oct 12, 2009
Mariposa in Home Cooking

Vegan/Wheat(gluten)Free Thanksgiving main course

I know this is an old post, but it's also the first hit that comes up when you google "vegan gluten-free thanksgiving" so I wanted to add my thoughts here. As a long-time vegetarian who now eats gluten-free and usually vegan, I want to weigh in strongly *against* both stuffed squash/pumpkin and lentil loaf. Unless you are a pro at these dishes they usually come out dry and heavy, and I've felt sad at many a holiday dinner when stuck with one of these two options.

Instead, I want to recommend a Chow.com recipe that I've converted to vegan and gluten-free. It take a bit of time and love, but you can make it a day ahead and reheat it right before serving, and it is so incredible the vegans and celiac folks at your table will feel anything but short-changed. Find the recipe and detailed instructions for Celery Root and Squash Gratin with Walnut-Thyme Streusel here: http://inmybox.wordpress.com/2008/12/... (You'll need to scroll down a bit to find the recipe.)

Last year we hosted an entirely vegan and gluten-free Thanksgiving. Our meat-and-bread-eating friends and family were nervous, but by the end of the meal everyone agreed it was one of the best Thanksgiving dinners they'd ever had. The whole menu with photos and links to all the recipes is on my blog: http://inmybox.wordpress.com/2008/11/...

Oct 12, 2009
Mariposa in Home Cooking

El Balazo Cabbage Salad - anyone have details?

Fabulous! This is exactly the kind of knowledge I was seeking! Thank you so much.

Feb 08, 2008
Mariposa in San Francisco Bay Area

El Balazo Cabbage Salad - anyone have details?

I am absolutely in love with the cabbage salad they serve at El Balazo taqueria (I go to the one on Haight St. but there are several around the Bay Area that I assume serve the same salad). I would love to make it at home, especially since my CSA has brought me enough cabbage bounty that I'm going to be getting creative with cabbage for weeks to come.

So I'm wondering the following: Does anyone have a recipe that they already know produces a cabbage salad that tastes like the one at Balazo? That would be ideal. Barring that, does anyone recognize the salad as something for which I might be able to google a recipe? Like, "Oh yeah, that's a traditional Mexican Cabbage Salad with Lime and Cumin" or something like that...

The silky, not crunchy, texture definitely reminds me of salads where the cabbage has been soaked in salt water overnight. But my palette is not so good at picking out flavors. I can tell visually that the salad has flecks of red onion, tomato, and lots of black pepper. Any help would be appreciated!

Feb 04, 2008
Mariposa in San Francisco Bay Area

Where to find good African food in Oakland?

I highly recommend A Taste of Africa, which is in South Berkeley on Shattuck. www.atasteofafrica.net.
It used to be in a location right across from Ashby BART, and I was crushed when it closed down. I spent many happy evenings there, talking politics with the owner, drinking an incredible ginger drink, and eating delicious Cameroonian food.

I live in SF now so I am out of touch with the East Bay food scene, but then I discovered a few months ago that the owner has a truck that he sets up at the Ashby Flea Market. I was so happy to know that this food would once again pass my lips! Imagine my delight when I was walking down Shattuck one night a few weeks ago and found they have reopened at a new location! They were closing, and I was on my way to dinner at Herbivore, but I went in to talk to the owner for a moment and it's still the same charming, gracious guy.

So I can't recommend the food with any recency - I've never even eaten from the kitchen they have now, for example - but it is most definitely worth checking out. Here's a chowhound thread about the new restaurant: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/360390.

Do check it out and give a report! I'd love to know how you like it.

Nov 16, 2007
Mariposa in San Francisco Bay Area

Sparky's Organic Diner in Northampton

As requested, here are some thoughts after a successful visit to Sparky's Diner at 241 Main St. in Northampton. Thanks to caughtstars for helping me find it in the first place!

I went in search of diner breakfast, and it's not really a breakfast place. We had fried-egg sandwiches, which is the only egg dish offered among a small selection of oatmeal and I've forgotten now what else. Arriving in a paper basket, the sandwich was a bun with a free-range fried egg as well as the additional white cheddar and tomato I'd opted for from the list of extras. The sandwich was phenomenal. The egg was perfectly cooked, and between the egg and the cheese, just the right amount of salty and proteiny goodness. My sweetie had black coffee and pronounced it excellent - I'm not a coffee drinker so I can't testify, but he is pretty picky about his coffee.

The place is cheap, and astoundingly so when you consider that the meat is all organic and free-range, as is the dairy. $3 or $3.50 for a hot dog or a hamburger with various fixings, around that for an organic milkshake, and the fried-egg sanwich is only $2.50, although the extras are 75 cents apiece. The decor is minimal - not diner funky but rather industrial. Red plastic chairs and black formica tables in a cement room with exposed grill and metallic hood.

We also had an order of fries, which were good although not fat enough and soft enough for my taste. But my companion again found them excellent, so they were a very good execution of a type of fries that just doesn't happen to be my preference.

I'm curious to know if anyone else has tried out this relatively new place. Let me know what you think!

Feb 11, 2007
Mariposa in All New England Archive

Northampton diner w/ organic meat?

Hey there, fellow New England Chowhounders,

This is my introductory post and first question for you. I just moved from the Bay Area where I was a pretty active part of the San Francisco/Bay Chowhound community. Now I live near Worcestor, in Western Massachusetts. I'm thrilled that there is an active bunch of chowhounds out here to help me get my stomach settled in.

A friend of mine told me about a diner, I believe in or near Northampton, that recently opened and has organic meat and organic milkshakes. Then she went on silent retreat for a month, so I can't ask her until March what place she's talking about. Can anyone identify it for me?

Thanks so much,
Mariposa

Feb 06, 2007
Mariposa in All New England Archive