Saturday, August 04, 2007

What's in Your Saraga Basket?

Well, possums, (to quote Amuse-Biatch), I've just finished my meat odyssey and while I'm sure the finished product won't be nearly as impressive as it feels like it should be, it's still a relief! I feel like I've finally gotten my culinary life back! Who knew that seeing, eating, and writing about steak, chops, and pork would take that little extra part of my brain that makes me actually have creative and amusing things to blog. So, fresh from the grocery for some inspiration -- and loaded with Chinese Dieter's green tea, recommended for all manner of purging by one well-known local chef -- I'm ready to eat and cook and enjoy again! (For those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about, don't worry. Come October, I'll give you a heads up.)

Saraga International Grocery, I'm happy to see, is hopping with life! There were times I was concerned as shelves seemed to empty and produce looked grim, but they've adapted, changed a few of their products, and voila! A thriving and well-stocked international market! Great produce including monster papaya, mangos, and watermelons right now, plus a new separate counter for halel goat, lamb, and beef. (The butcher had an entire lamb on his counter while I was there. He kept pointing it out. I think he thought I'd be grossed out by it. Little did he know I'd probably seen it slaughtered.)
They've added a few more American frozen foods and dairy products and there's an expanded beer/wine section. (They have Zipang Sparkling Sake but it's pretty dear at $6.99 for 12-ounce bottle.) And best of all, at 4:00 p.m. on a Saturday, the market was teeming with customers of every ethnicity, a pleasant sight to see in Indianapolis.

What's in my Saraga basket?

*Thai eggplant (the mystery vegetable that cost CJ the quickfire on last week's Top Chef. He's clearly never had the green curry at Sawasdee.)
*Galangal root
*Thai lime leaves (more diplomatically named than "Kaffir" lime leaves, "kaffir" being an ethnic slur in many parts of the world.)
*5 limes
*2 cans coconut milk
*1 can bamboo shoots (sensing a theme here? Maybe see a green curry in my future?)
*fresh cut pineapple
*baby carrots
*chocolate gallettas (better looking than the simply named Chinese confection "Big Gluten Ball")
*3 Ballerina brand Chinese green dieter's tea.

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