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26 July 2003 @ 12:55 pm
morning shopping  
I'm most pleased with the Morgan Hill farmer's market. Before I left, I had printed out a list of thrift shops to visit after, because I wanted to find a sharpening steel for my poor, dulled Haenkel's chef's knife. It badly needed a sharpening even before I moved, and since I haven't been able to find my serrated knife, I've been using it to cut everything, including the the tops of artichokes. That'll dull anything.

Then, wandering around the market I spotted a guy in the back who was selling tools. Started to go past, then though 'hmm, he might have sharpening stones'. Got a little closer, and he did. But even better, he was sharpening things himself. He had a list where you could put your number, so he could call you the night before and remind you to bring your knives to be sharpened, but I didn't know if I'd make it back to the same market next week, so I went home and got my chef's knife. For $2.50, it's now restored to glorious sharpness, with all the tiny nicks and chips that I hadn't been able to sharpen out myself gone. I'm still going to pick up a sharpening steel at some point for inbetween sharpenings, but I now know where to go to have it done by an expert.

I liked the market a lot better than the Sunnyvale one I went to last. The focus was clearly the farmer's market element, instead of being an arts and crafts fair with occasional scattered fruit and vegetable stands. They still had variety, there was an indian food booth and a russian one, a coffee place, a couple of bakery stalls, and someone selling pickles, but the arts and crafts were limited to the tool man, art glass, and a soap booth.

At the '$2 a pound for everything' stall I brought tomatoes, eggplant, basil, and sweet italian peppers. I'm not sure what I plan to do with them yet, but I'm thinking pasta and something italian will be involved. The tomatoes were the best I've found out here. For an area with such fabulous farming, the tomatoes are mere shadows of the glories of a mid-Atlantic tomato in high summer. Maybe they just grow better in clay soils.

Fresh corn at another stall, and the last loaf of cinnamon bread at a bakery stall. It was actually the one they were intending to take home for themselves, but they yielded to my sad look at the nonsatisfying lemon and poppy breads and fetched it out from underneath the table. I had to wait for a few minutes to pick up my knife, which proved my doom in resisting the coffee stall. A pound of macadamia vanilla coffee, co-op and shade grown and at $7, extremely reasonably priced. Which is the other reason I liked this farmer's market -- apparently the stalls only cost $15 a week, so the prices are mostly lower than Sunnyvale. I did, however, chanting the mantra of 'you have no money!'. resist the delicous looking sushi quality ahi and hamachi at the fishmonger's.

Oh, and the Dean people were out. I chatted with them and reregistered for my new address. I couldn't actually remember the old one, so I put a vague approximation down.
 
 
 
Alix (Tersa)tersa on July 28th, 2003 07:37 am (UTC)
I'm still going to pick up a sharpening steel at some point for inbetween sharpenings, but I now know where to go to have it done by an expert.

Alton Brown geeking, but he says that self-sharpening isn't worth it. He recommends one of those stick-thingees to keep your knife on true, but to get it *sharpened* by a professional.

And at $2.50, I think it's a better idea anyway. :)
Lauratavella on July 30th, 2003 12:33 pm (UTC)
It was pretty cool to watch him work, he had a huge sharpening stone that was about half-worn down from many years of sharpening, and a bunch of other tools to get chips out and the like.