Secret Kitchen menu, 14th July 2012
Sourdough crostini with Gorgonzola, apricots & basil
Hibiscus sorbet with melons, mangos and strawberries
About tonight’s menu
We lived in San Francisco for several years and this menu reflects some of the things we miss dearly – bourbon and rye cocktails, sourdough bread, abundant locally grown fruit, excellent Japanese, Vietnamese and Mexican food.
There was a tiny Japanese restaurant called Eiji almost next to our house, where we’d often go for gyoza (aka pot stickers). One day I played around with ingredients to try to recreate their recipe at home and ended up with these pork, beef and shrimp versions.
Another favourite meal was to drive to Saigon Sandwich, a tiny hole in the wall in an unlikely location which sold just one thing – bánh mì. This is fusion food with colonial roots – various Vietnamese cold cuts and roasted meats with lashings of fresh coriander, Thai basil and chillies in a French baguette with mayonnaise, Maggi and paté. Saigon Sandwich did the best in town.
When the weather was hot and sunny we’d go to our local green spot – Dolores Park in the very Mexican Mission neighbourhood – and if we were lucky there’d be some festival or other with women selling cups of melon doused with lime juice, chilli and salt.