May Food Swap and South End Tavern

Today I want to the food swap with the From Scratch Club in Troy. It was on Saturday instead of Sunday to be part of Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution Day. I juiced 31 lemons to make 6 bottles of lavender lemonade. Check out the recipe on Joy the Baker. Unfortunately, I didn't get a photo of my bottles of lemonade or my piles of lemons I juiced, but I can say the very cool bottles I got were from Christmas Tree Shops ($1.99). The recipe is incredibly delicious. I juiced about 18 more lemons for my sample jug. I had extra from that batch and sat around drinking that, watching not very good movies (One Day and half of Horrible Bosses), and watching my coworkers Cheasapeake Retrievers last night. It was pure heaven.

Without bragging too much, this item was ridiculously, almost overwhelmingly, popular. Other ideas I had for this time were: fresh pasta, oyster crackers, BBQ sauce, and ice cream. But once I read the lavender lemonade recipe on Joy the Baker a couple weeks ago, it just really spoke to me. The recipe is simple and elegant. Sometimes the best recipes only have a few ingredients. Also, all of my going around town talking about the food swaps has attracted some friends and friends of friends. It is starting to feel more like a party than like me in a room with strangers hoping they like what I made. In the middle of a fascinating cake decorating story, I had to remind myself we were supposed to be looking at the items on display and not just socializing the whole time. I also brought some frozen packages of snow geese breasts my coworker's husband hunted in the wild near Plattsburgh, NY. I wasn't sure how these would go or not with all the vegans at the swaps, but I thought it wouldn't have been a big deal if I took them back with me (they turned out to be popular).

So check out what I got for my refreshing, light, and summery beverage and my wild goose breasts:

I got: vanilla blueberry vodka, a homemade dishtowel, scallions that grow back continually as you cut pieces off of them, tomato relish, baked curry tofu with tahini sauce, rhubarb syrup (seems good for cocktails), lavender soap, a body butter from Joy of the Journey Farm, and delicious lighter than air Italian cookies. The cookies are fabulous. I just now mixed some of the blueberry vodka with some seltzer, and it is very refreshing.

Then, my friend Jessica and I rounded up our men and went to the South End Tavern in order to continue  the Tour de Kitsch that started with the Red Lobster trip.Scott and I have been talking about the fascinating Ladies Entrance ever since he first went to a wine tasting party at Jessica's house a couple years ago.

Here we are in front of the awesome signs:

We had some tasty fish fry sandwiches. Jessica had the "Augie" which had a tasty secret sauce (I think it might have also had roast beef and coleslaw in the sandwich), and her boyfriend had the BLT club sandwich, which was like a regular club sandwich but with more bacon instead of the turkey. Scott had a Sam Adams and the rest of us had Blue Moons (that might tell you how not very exciting the beer list is, but whatever). I liked this place. It was comfortable with a historical feeling. It reminded me of Negri's Italian Dinners that we went to on our honeymoon in Sonoma County. Both places have a bar and dining room in separate rooms and feel like they came out of a different time period entirely. The separate Ladies Entrance creates the opportunity for many jokes based on who walks in there (and because their bathroom signs are easily missed).

All in all, good times!


  1. Yeah, it's really too bad they don't have one decent beer on tap, because it's a neat spot and the food is well-above-average pub food...

  2. Yep, the "AUGIE" was roast beef, coleslaw and "secret sauce". The "Secret Sauce" was thousand island dressing (typical of a roast beef sandwich) mixed with horseradish. It was yummy!

  3. Sorry, it is important to put the "AUGIE" in all caps. At least I remembered to put the "Secret sauce" in italics!!


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