Hotlanta

May 5, 2014

The ATL, Hotlanta, The Big Peach . . . Every city has their own nickname, or niche, and its very easy to see where Atlanta gets all of its hype. I recently returned from a long weekend in the A-Town and felt completely rejuvenated and ready for spring to take a big leap into my life. Although I wasn’t quite ready to go back to work, I managed to catch up on a bunch of reading, make a list of things I wanted to write about, recipe’s to explore, and a whole list of things to achieve in the next few months. Here are a few things from the short list . . .

 1.) Start a garden

 2.) Shop as much from local markets this summer as possible

3.) Get started on my reading list (Thank you Emma for your suggestions)

 4.) Look more into medicinal herbs and naturopath remedies

 5.) Make good gluten free bread, and more importantly a good gluten free pizza crust

 Whew, I’m going to be busy. All I can say is, my weekend was the perfect combination of relaxation and exploration, and I couldn’t be happier to have gotten away from home even though it was only for a short period of time.IMG_1556IMG_1526

 

 You know how you can just meet people in really random places, and they stick with you for the rest of your life? My friend David is one such person; he recently moved to Atlanta. He was a regular customer at Starbucks, and almost every day I waited on him and made his Venti Soy, extra-hot, no whipped cream, hot chocolate. Somewhere between taking his order, the milk steaming, and the creation of his morning hot chocolate, we struck up a wonderful friendship and I couldn’t be more grateful to have had the opportunity to meet him.

Upon arrival Kurtis and I tossed our bags down and tried to find a place to get some pizza . . . Due to the late hour and my need for gluten free crust, our pizza craving became quite the challenge. Nevertheless, the resulting pizza was what made me realize, I need to come to terms with reality, and make my own gluten free pizza crust, not too many places can nail it. It ends up being pizza toppings on top of a cracker crust, not the most appealing. Day two, we spent gallivanting around town, in the Lenox Mall, and lazing about until we met David Smith for Dinner at a local Southern food hot spot called Mary Macs Tea Room. Talk about the craze, we had to be waved into a parking lot by an attendant, and we had a decent 20 minute wait once into the lobby. (Believe me, it was totally worth it.) People were lined up to get their comfort food in that night. A new kind of atmosphere for me, they did have a gluten free menu, and you just wrote down your order on a slip of paper and gave it to the waitress. I got a Georgia Peach Martini, because well, I was in Georgia for goodness sake. Shrimp and Cheesy Grits, Steamed Cabbage, and Collard Greens. Such a delicious combination, and the company: Wonderful!

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We ended our evening by grabbing some Indian Desserts at a local Restaurant called Bombay. It looks to be your normal Indian restaurant and it is just that. You walk in and sizzling plates of curry are being served next to you, all the waiters are Indian and I had a short conversation with one of them about the actor on the screen as he plays in a lot of Bollywood films . . . I love the authenticity of restaurants such as this, they don’t strive to be an Americanized version of Indian cuisine, they just allow the food to speak for themselves. There were probably no more than 15 tables in the small restaurant, but I hope they are always full. We had some Kulfi, which is essentially an Indian ice cream, very delicious, I think the flavor was mango; Rice Pudding, and sweet dumplings also called Galub Jamun. I couldn’t eat the dumplings, but everything else was just wonderful!

 

 

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 The final day in Atlanta, we spent at the Aquarium taking various pictures of underwater creatures, followed by a lovely meeting with David again, but this time, he had to take us to the Dekaulb Farmers Market: The story behind this market was that it began as a small market with international roots, and boy did it take off. It now sits in a former superstore type location, and we had to stalk someone leaving to find a parking spot it was so full! This place was bustling with activity, you walk in and the choices are endless, you can get fresh seafood broken down however you need it and they will do so right in front of you. The produce is something unmatched by any grocery store and very few commercial chains would be able to stand up to this beast of a market. Overall, it was a wonderful treat to end our little trip in such a wonderful place, if you ever visit Atlanta, you must go to the Dekaulb Farmers Market. In the end we left with 1 lb. of Organic Columbian Coffee, a bunch of Thai chilies and habaneras, some mangos, and sprouted grain chips. We set out on a quick adventure and we sure got one, we returned with happy hearts and lists of things to do once we return to reality . . . And here we are <3