Elliott Smith – Heaven Adores You {My Two Cents}

Elliott Smith Heaven Adores You

The first time you say a word, it has more meaning: the first time you say thank you, the first time you say I’m sorry, the first time you say I love you.  Heaven Adores You was beautiful, the way beautiful meant the first time it was said.

“I’m never going to know you now, but I’m going to love you anyhow.”

Seattle Vacation – Day 2

Jade Garden Seattle Dim Sum

Day 2 of Seattle weekend with FoodFash mom was totally front-loaded with food.  Our first stop was for dim sum at Jade Garden in the International District.  We walked up to a giant, but fast-moving, line.  And within minutes, we were served tea as dumpling carts swarmed our table offering us this and that.  There wasn’t much we turned down.  And with very full bellies, and our most satisfying dim sum experience to date, we were on our way.

Fuji Bakery Seattle

It took about two blocks and one beautiful pastry shop to create space for brunch dessert.  Yep, brunch dessert!  The pastry display at Fuji Bakery quickly convinced us that brunch dessert should be a thing.  Almond croissant, cinnamon roll {made with laminated dough}, and cream puff, all served on the most princess of plates.  I’d do it again if I could.

Pike Place Market Seattle

It was a super sunshiny day for Seattle and everyone was out and about.  We decided to join them by walking the mile and change to Pike Place Market, where fish were a flyin’ and crabs were a chillin’.

Pike Place Market Dungeness Crabs

I was oozing with envy for Seattleites as I passed by {reasonably priced} fresh, giant seafood and fresh, giant flowers.  “If I was a Seattleite, I could be one of those people that makes a habit out of fresh flowers at home.”, I thought.

Victor Steinbreuck Park FoodFash Mom

I bet FoodFash mom {an urban planner, by day} was having lots of If I was a Seattleite thoughts as well.

Victor Steinbrueck Park FoodFash

After all of our seafood sightings, we were on a mission for a whole dungeness crab.  So we headed next door to Cutters Crabhouse to feast with a view.

Cutters Crab House Seattle

Our time together {and with Seattle} was too short, but after such a wonderful weekend, it won’t be long before FoodFash mom and I rendezvous.  Toronto, perhaps?

Seattle Vacation – Day 1

Ballard Street Bucketfeet

Looking back, it’s pretty stinking unbelievable how much FoodFash mom and I were able to accomplish during our weekend trip to Seattle.  Friday was spent mostly in the air.  But Saturday… her eastern time body woke up in the sixes and headed out to a work function.  An hour later, my central time self crawled out of bed and quickly researched the best shopping in Seattle and the best brunch in that particular hood.

The virtual world directed me toward Ballard Avenue and The Hi Life.  I headed to the bus stop like I knew what I was doing, like it hadn’t been eight years since my feet hit Seattle pavement.  But all went well, thanks to the King County Metro app, and I was dropped a few blocks from the restaurant without a hitch.

Hi Life Brunch

I requested a table for one {near a window} and sipped my coffee out of a thick-rimmed mug as I waited for my breakfast to arrive.  Green chile grits and eggs with black beans, chorizo, and pico – there was just no reason to continue reading past the spring specials on the menu.  And when it arrived, I wondered why I’d never seen {or made} black beans and grits before.  It was quite the combination!

Prism Seattle

After I stuffed myself silly, I hit Ballard Street and 20th Ave and worked my way towards 22nd.  How wonderful it was to try on clothing after being the freshest member of the clean plate club.  But fullness aside, I loved the street before stepping foot in a store.  Ballard, tree-lined with mid-rise historic buildings filled with independent retailers, was a street worth loving.  And it took only a few stops to find my favorite store {ever} {seriously}: Prism.  I chatted it up with the sales clerk and… purchased every variety of cropped top Native Youth had to offer.  New favorite store, new favorite brand.  No other shop on the strip compared, but I continued browsing until it was time to swoop my mom up.

Car2Go Seattle

In a Car2Go!  I was all sorts of excited to use my Austin Car2Go membership in Seattle.  I put the keys in the ignition and {for the second time} acted like I was cruising down familiar streets.

Cafe Presse Seattle

It was on FoodFash mom’s list to check out Capitol Hill, so we parked in that area and asked around for lunch suggestions.  We were directed to Cafe Presse, a French bar-cafe, that was oh so cozy.  And I was ready for cozy food and drink.  The chicken liver terrine and a Last Word cocktail hit the spot.  Then I introduced her to Chartreuse, filled her in how the Blue Album was playing overhead on repeat, and we caught each other up on our mornings.  It was beautiful.

Kurt Cobain's House Seattle

From there we headed down Lake Washington Boulevard, gawking at incredible houses with even more incredible views, before arriving at 171 {Kurt Cobain’s house}.  It was an odd feeling, the entire experience. Taking a picture in front of a house, in front of a random someone’s house, was strange.  And knowing what took place yards away 21 years ago, eerie.  It felt wrong to smile.  So I didn’t.

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We soaked up more lakefront views and then headed to our dinner reservation at Lark.  At that moment, I felt like I couldn’t have had a better food day.  Every place was exactly what I hoped for and Lark was no exception.  We shared the Montana wagyu steak tartare and the {unpictured} Olsen Farm’s potato leek soup and Semolina gnocchi with artichoke hearts, anchovy, guanciale and toasted pine nuts.  And we uncharacteristically snuck in last bites rather than offering them up because everything was that delicious.

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It was another perfect Saturday with FoodFash mom for the books!

Grilled Sirloin Flap With Chimichurri

Beef Sirloin Flap with Chimichurri

Last summer, I attended a Texas Beef Council event with the Austin Food Blogger Alliance where I learned that there are cuts of beef other than the tenderloin that I should be exploring.  Months later, a Pinterest post reminded me that skirt steak was once on my list.

Beef Sirloin Flap Meat

Whole Foods didn’t carry skirt steak, but the butcher assured me that flap meat was a similar, but better quality, cut.  I purchased without hesitation, filled my cart with fresh herbs, hit up the bulk spice section, and headed home to heat up a cast iron grill pan {my favorite kitchen possession}.

Steak Cooked in Cast Iron Grill Pan

I luuuved this recipe.  If I didn’t have a newfound obsession with buying bulk spices as needed, almost the entire ingredient list would have already existed in my pantry.  And beyond this recipe’s simplicity, the finished product was bursting with flavor.  And I just couldn’t get enough of the chimichurri sauce.  There was a point after I hit full that I was still eating steak solely to scoop up more sauce.

And the flap meat?  I have a texture thing with fat that I’m not sure will ever allow me to prefer a cut of beef over the tenderloin.  But I’m definitely open to preparing flap meat {especially like this recipe} on occasion.