Sunday, May 31, 2009

Somebody must hate us...

First of all, wow! I didn't even tell anyone except my mom that we kind of started blogging again (if you can call posting twice in a month blogging...) and we somehow got 6 comments on the last post. So I'll try to post a little more often now, if I can - I started my summer job two weeks ago and its quite a commute, so I'm not sure how often I'll get to this. But since now I know that I have to keep you all informed about the CSA box, I'll have a little motivation! 

Anyway, the purpose of this post is not the CSA or garden (although I finally have to upload the original garden pics and the garden at a few weeks old pics), but to complain. For some reason it seems that whenever Steve and I really start to like a product or place, it is discontinued!! It is so frustrating, and I'm starting to think that its some sort of conspiracy against us.

This all started back when I lived in King of Prussia. On the way home from work, I'd stop by the Trader Joe's in Gateway. I always loved to get a particular olive tapenade, and one day they just stopped stocking it. They came out with some substitution, but it was no where near the same. 

OK, so this was just a little annoying, but it continually got worse. 

The next instance I can think of also involved Trader Joe's. We love to make caprese salad in the summer with cherry or grape tomatoes, basil, balsamic vinegar, oil, and mozzarella. We used to get Trader Joe's pearlini mozzarella - tiny pearl-sized balls of mozzarella, and it worked so well with the salad - perfect size and we didn't even have to slice it. Well, one day the beginning of last summer they stopped selling it. Sure, the other sizes of mozzarella taste the same, but the cubes I cut just aren't as pretty. 

Now we move on to the more recent losses - 

First, Steve and I loved the margherita pizza from a place down the street called Luciano's. Then they shut down, just like that. We have no clue if they relocated or just went out of business. For a while we were on a quest to find a comparable margherita, but we've had absolutely no luck. Oh well. 

Second, we love a recipe - actually from The Herbal Kitchen, one of our cookbook club books. Its a kale-pancetta orecchiette. The orecchiette really makes the dish. We used to get it at our usual grocery store, Acme, but they just stopped stocking it. A few other local grocery stores don't stock it either, and I really don't want to have to go all over town just for one product! It must be the Main Line grocery stores - they suck! Seriously. I guess they are smaller because they're along busy roads and not in a strip mall, so the selection is horrible for everything! Orecchiette is a sturdier pasta, and I haven't been able to find anything to replace it well. We've been using small shells, but they just don't work as well. 

And finally, a loss we've suffered just today! And I think this is the absolute worst! There was a stand in the Ardmore Farmer's Market called Ariana's Caravan. It was a GREAT spice shop - it had a huge variety of spices that you can't get anywhere else (even stuff that our fellow cookbook club members had to go to Chinatown for for our last meeting); so many kinds of dried peppers; teas; oils; vinegars; our favorite curry paste; really cool leather wine carriers for BYOs (which we've already lost and had to replace - hope we hold on to this one!); etc etc etc. Well, we were in the Farmer's Market today to get some fresh squeezed beet-strawberry-mango juice, and there was a huge sale at Ariana's. Great, we thought. But then we found out that they are looking for a buyer. They're even selling their stands and shelves, so there's little hope that the buyer will keep the shop open in the same space. I really don't know what we're going to do now! What do we do when we need a new crazy spice for cookbook club? What do we do when we just need more peppercorns - buy the McCormick brand at Acme, which, by the way, usually doesn't have loose peppercorns and just packages them in the crappy plastic McCormick pepper grinder (which is pretty hard to destroy). 

Anyway, I just realized that all of these items are about food. But its annoying anyway. Either Steve and I just like things that most people don't and so don't buy, which leads to stores discontinuing them, or someone hates us!


J.Summ said...

Sigh...I miss my foodie friends. The best spice place is in the Italian Market. You can get anything, and they really know their stuff. If you head down there, swing by DiBruno Bros and get me some of Armando Batali's mole salami...mmm...

mom said...

So, Pottstown isn't so bad after all.....we can get orecchiette here and we always have the spice stand at Zern's-and you can buy bulk peppercorns. The only downside is you have to take a shower immediately after you visit Zerns.

Steve Raw said...

You can also buy nunchaka at Zerns. Des, we should go on a Zerns date!

johnsons531 said...

oh dear! I don't know what I would do if my spice store closed. granted I go there infrequently, but I would refuse to resort to grocery store spices. good luck adjusting!