The Weekly Shop: Soba Noodles, Sneezes and Sporadic Sunshine

Green asparagus and a poached egg
Green asparagus and a poached egg

Munching on a few spears of green asparagus with a poached egg and a sprinkling of salt flakes one lunchtime last week, it struck me how incredibly lucky I am – and I make no apologies for sounding smug – to know exactly where the food on my plate came from, and to know that that place is very close by indeed.  But just in case you think I’m slightly over-the-top evangelical about all this local, seasonal eating thing, I will offset the balance by pointing out that yes, that is a mango in that photo below, and yes, I like an aubergine (also pictured) as much as the next person.  Quite possibly more.  Mangos are in season elsewhere at the moment, somewhere very, very far away, and the ones you can pick up in the Westend of Wiesbaden are perfectly ripe and juicy and utterly delicious.  The Mini Dietz and I shared one this week; his portion in a sloppy mush and mine in chunks with soba noodles, aubergines and a lime and chilli dressing.  I’m not sure which of us was more pleased.

Soba noodles with aubergine and mango
Ottolenghi’s soba noodles with aubergine and mango

I spent most of last week tethered indoors by a sneezing husband and baby (and if you know any men, you know the terrible suffering this causes… everybody) but embraced the opportunity to experiment with some recipes I’ve wanted to try for a while – see lentils with gorgonzola below.  Happily, however, I didn’t miss out on much sunshine because there mostly wasn’t any, and when it did appear, I wandered through the forest and the Kurpark and sat soaking up the rays and eating a slightly odd chicken curry outside Halt Bar with friends.   On May Day, my husband treated me to an early dinner (sneezing over and baby in tow) at Bäckerbrunnen, a cosy, traditional spot in the old town where there’s all manner of classic German fare to be eaten.

Lentils with tomatoes and gorgonzola
Ottolenghi’s lentils with tomatoes and gorgonzola

Last night I celebrated a friend’s birthday at Heimathafen, where we celebrated with Hugos and homemade scones, both of which I was unable to resist.  My friend had brought clotted cream with her back from the UK, however, so I was basically using a scone as a vessel for that: in any case, I’ve regretted it ever since (see: sensitivity to gluten).  I left before the dancing began and arrived home to a dark flat echoing with big manly snores and tiny baby ones; this morning the three of us sat together and enjoyed a proper German breakfast of ham and cheese; and now the sun’s come back out, I think it’s time for a good Spring walk.  Happy days 🙂

Food News and Recipes from around Germany…

A fellow Wiesbaden expat’s visit to Villa im Tal (added bonus: if you explore Anne’s blog, you get to nose around the inside of her beautiful flat)
Social Dining in Munich – a terrific idea for sociable types who like good food
An insider’s guide to the Bergkirchweih, a sort of mini-Oktoberfest in Erlangen, Bavaria
A new supermarket in Berlin sells packaging-less produce (I’m a big fan of this)

…and further afield:

Would you dine with strangers in their home? (Yes!)
5 links to read before cooking green asparagus
★ Meal planning tips and tricks from a brilliant French food writer
Drink tea with a stuffed toy at Japan’s Moomin Cafe (really).

Hope you’ve had a great week too!

10 Comments

  • We are very lucky aren’t we?! Very sweet of you to provide your readers with a link to me!! I kind of wish I had been a bit more thorough with my description of Villa im Tal and taken more pics. Your food photos are fab 🙂 I am off to the hairdresser now, so will pop by Westend to buy some ripe mangos. The way you described them made me really fancy some. Bäckerbrunnen is another place I’ve walked past and wondered about, so now shall definitely try it out! Heimathafen I already know and like very much for it’s relaxed atmosphere (and they sell Dale’s cakes!), as well as very good coffees. They use my hubby’s favourite Wiesbaden coffee roast from Kaufmann’s. We used to live a couple of minutes walk away from Heimathafen when we were renting just over a month ago!

    • It was my first time in Heimathafen but I really liked the main café area, I’m looking forward to going back there in the daytime to enjoy the light coming through those enormous windows. And you’re welcome, thank you, and hope you found yourself a good mango! 😀

  • Glad all that sneezing is over and done with. Surely all the vitamins from the masses of asparagus available right now, can only do good! I do love the sound of spargel with a poached egg though, must try! PS. How on earth did I miss the Moomin cafe in Japan last year?!?!? 😀

  • I’m now craving green asparagus tips and poached egg and because it’s Sunday the entire country is closed and gah:-p Great food pics too. I also really like the idea of EatWith/Kitchensurfing. Eating food is most enjoyable when it’s a social activity and it’d be a good way to hang out and meet new people. (and taste some new dishes – win win:-))

    • Hahaha – and thank you! 🙂 I totally agree with you about eating being a social thing and would very much like to say something intelligent in response but I got 4 hours sleep last night and can barely see my computer screen 😉

      zzz…

  • Hope your baby isn’t poorly and keeping you awake and that you have managed to catch-up on sleep now! Sorry for the delayed reply to your email, I don’t check it as regularly as I should. I’ve replied now though 🙂

    • Hello, I’m so sorry, I have received your email, I just don’t seem to have had a moment to myself this last week and I’m horribly behind with everything! I’m supposed to be getting on with email today though, so you might well get one later 😀 But thank you, the baby’s fine – though I’m not sure I will ever catch up on sleep! 😉

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