Have you ever eaten something so delicious, so indescribable, that you remember it for years afterwards?
It's no secret that I love food. I'm a bit of a picky eater mind you, but that doesn't stop me from searching out new and interesting places to eat.
The first year of our marriage I was pregnant with Crystal and taking an after hours class for an early childhood education certificate. We had class downtown on Saturdays and the one place close enough to school to go for lunch was a little 'local food' bistro, something pretty foreign to me in those days. I was a whole lot pickier about what I'd eat back then and eyed their menu with serious misgivings.The only thing on the menu that I found even slightly recognizable was their version of a grilled cheese sandwich.
Homemade whole wheat bread (and I'm a white bread girl all the way) with a slathering of flavoured mayo (hated mayo at the time, it's still not my favourite) ham sliced off the bone and smoked cheddar cheese, all of which was toasted under the broiler, open faced.
People . . . that was my very first experience with food taken to the next level, simple though it was. I craved that sandwich through my entire pregnancy and could bring the taste of that luscious sandwich to mind for years afterwards. (Henry's response when I'd muse about how much my pregnant self was craving The Sandwich?? Make some peanut butter toast . . .)
It happened to me again early last summer. As the daughter and granddaughter of European bakers, bakeries and home baked goods are in my blood. I grew up in a bakery, spending time in both my Opa and my dad's bakery as a kid.
So, when I went to Asheville for a photography workshop, I naturally did a bit of research on the food before I left. The host of our workshop took us to some wonderful restaurants, Asheville is an artist and foodie's paradise.
But there was one place, above all the rest, that will forever shine in my memory and my tastebuds. I scheme sometimes, trying to come up with the perfect reason I should go back to Asheville. I'd love to go and spend more time exploring the city, there was so much I didn't have time to see, but the truth is, I'd really be going back because of these . . .
The perfect doughnut.
Just writing that has my tastebuds watering.
The Hole doughnut shop in Asheville has the perfect donut. They have the loveliest artisanal dough, so soft and stretchy, it's fried in front of your eyes, then slathered with the most divine, buttery, vanilla glaze and set down, hot on the table, beside your cup of tea or coffee.(Or a big glass of Farm to Table, non homogenized , whole fat milk!) Of course, they don't stop at the traditional glaze, they try out new flavours regularly, so you never know what they might have from one week to the next.
I had time on my own, after the workshop ended and before Joyce flew into Charlotte for the rest our our trip. I spent that time sitting at the counter watching them fry doughnuts and savouring every.single.bite. of the one in front of me. As a matter of fact, although I was stuffed to the gills, I couldn't resist ordering another one because I knew chances were slim I'd ever be back.
I still dream about them.
If baking doughnuts was in my repertoire I'd be trying out one version of dough after another trying to recreate them.
But, they're not. So, really, I just need to travel back to Asheville and visit Hole again. Maybe everyday for a week. That might satisfy my craving.
But probably not.
So how about you? Have you ever had an experience with food that stayed with you long after it was gone? I'm always looking for something new to try . . .