Saturday morning's cavalo nero run to the Ferry building farmers market was a success . . . $24 (!) later I had most of the vegetables to make la ribollita and had tasted every Tuscan olive oil I could find inside. Early on I'd bumped into fellow chowhound, Tuscan aficionado, and personal chef ( www.fullfridge.com ), Tom, at Mariquita Farms ( www.mariquita.com ) booth. Lucky for me as he was my guide to the stalls with the best examples of the ingredients I needed and how to prep them. In retrospect, I wish I'd taken his advice to get the white "butter beans" from Iacopi.
Anyway, we took the opportunity to have breakfast together. We were on the same wavelength, each having eyed the buttermilk pancakes at the Prather Ranch stand outside next to Fatted Calf. I had proposed that we try this and then share something else, but after splitting an order here, neither of us could eat another bite.
Image of Prather Ranch pancakes and pork sausage ($7) -
Each of the big pancakes was topped with a pat of butter. Fresh off the grill, the pancakes were hot enough to melt the butter into the maple syrup spiked with Jameson whisky. Fluffy, tender, slightly tangy, these pancakes were some of the best I've had in a long while. Yet, even better was the sausage made of heritage pork. Juicy, richly flavored and remarkably not greasy, just half of one of these large, plump links was more than satisfying enough for one person. Tom commented on the attractive hint of piquant spice.
It was also a kick to hang out on that end of the market. The long line at Blue Bottle was the social crossroads for San Francisco, where I spotted four different friends during my brief stationary time over breakfast.
This was a delicious, hot, and filling way to start the weekend. Rose's chanterelle scramble and Hayes Street oyster po'boy had to wait for another day.
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