Saturday, June 12, 2010

Stand Off II - Because there was so much uneaten food from the last time

Today's odyssey of grazing took us to Downtown Market.  For those of you playing along from the Anchorage area, this is the market on 3rd and E streets. Our visit was divided between buying food for later and buying food to eat there - never let it said we lack focus. 
 Our first stop was at Capriccio Spices, to pick up some much needed supplies.  They are local purveyors of just about any herb, seasoning or tea you could possibly want.  Just next door is a specialty meat stand that we think was Indian Valley, but did not think to make a note of the name.  Mr EA got landjager meat sticks, which he loved very, very much.  They have other products made of specialty meats (elk, reindeer, etc), so if you like that sort of thing, look them up! Right next to that is a stand for plucky local dairy, Mat-Su Creamery.  They had plenty of their cheese curds, string cheese, and mild and sharp cheddar.  The guy staffing the booth says that their ice cream will shortly be available at New Sagaya market, but their butter is mostly sold at the factory.  So there's something to keep in mind, dairy fans!  Of course, we stocked up - they have darn good cheese.  Shopping done, it was time for lunch.
   We made our way to the food aisle, where the crowds made it clear tourist season has begun.
We started with the ever-popular corn fritters with honey butter, which are pretty much what it sounds like.  They are tasty little deep-fried nuggets of batter with sweet corn kernels embedded in them.  The crispy outer layer gives way to a sweet, tender interior.   They are dished up with whipped honey butter in copious amounts, and are well worth a stop.  As you can see from the picture, they also do fried halibut.  Mr EA has had it and liked it quite a bit in previous visits. 

Next up was the Slider Shack, where shared an order of sliders. The burgers are juicy and meaty, topped with cheese and some tender flavorful onions, all on sweet Hawaiian rolls.  Mmmm! Usually I need to condiment up my burgers, but these are perfect just they way they are.  We were hoping for some of their fries as well, but there was a pretty long wait, so we skipped them for this trip.
Then we went across the aisle to Latino Grill for an order of their brochettas - or "cubes of meat on a stick".  Resisting the siren song of a combo platter, we got an order of beef sticks, which had a good beef flavor, but could have used just a bit more time on the grill. They are served with chimichurri sauce, which was a little more acidy than my platonic ideal chimichurri sauce, but still was pretty darn tasty. 

Our last stop of the day took us to the Gyro stand for a ...if you guessed gyro, you guessed right!  And it was a pretty good gyro - the sauce was tasty and the veggies were fresh and the meat was crispy.  It was not the best gyro I have ever had, but it was pretty good!
On the way out, we stopped at the Nut House for a bag of tasty cashews for later - if you like flavored nuts, this stand is a good bet.  Also, their nuts come wrapped in cute little American-flag paper cones.  The adorableness almost makes the nuts taste even better :)

In short, your biggest food problem at the Downtown Market is going to be chosing which delicious option you are going to take.  Good luck and happy grazing!

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