Originally uploaded by looseid
Angela had a friend who was holding a booth at the Underground Farmer's Market. She asked me to come along. I said sure.
And from out of the blue, a very tentative Friday night date also asked me to go to the very same event; that sealed the deal, at least for the evening.
We paid two bucks admission to enter SomArts where the event was staged. On top of admission, we had to get in line to enter the main hall and then pay for each booth's food, with little guarantee of it being any good. We even signed a waiver to play this potluck Russian roulette.
On the flip side, it was a nice balmy evening, a phrase I've uttered only a handful of times in San Francisco. There were hipsters galore, and overpriced homemade twinkies, dumplings, grilled meat, jerkies, pizzas. And we headed for the longest line of all, the Raclette booth, which was Angela's friend's post.
Raclette is a cow's milk cheese from the almighty dairy nation of Switzerland. It's also the name of the very dish that features it. At the booth, they had two halves of a wheel of this cheese suspended under an open blue flame, which basically is a broiler. The flame cooks the top of the cheese and creates a crusty skin on the surface, and then a bubbling caldron of stinky cheese goodness underneath. At the appropriate time, the cook slides the half wheel close to the prepared bowl of cooked potatoes and cornichons and tilts it as she scrapes the hot layer of cheese with a chef's knife like a waterfall. It's basically a reverse fondue, but better, because of the crusty top layer.
Anyway, all was good because the city blessed us with warm weather that night.