Saturday, June 6, 2015

Citizen’s Band (and Pinkie’s Bakery)

"Believe me, you have to get up early if you want to get out of bed." ~ Groucho Marx

Place: Citizen's Band (and Pinkie's Bakery)
Location: 1198 (& 1196) Folsom Street (on the corner of 8th Street)
Hours: open Saturday & Sunday for "Brunch" at 10:00am (and sat-sun at 9:00am
Meal: Corn Flaked Brioche French Toast ~ blueberry compote, powdered sugar, and 100% pure log cabin (which I assumed meant the maple syrup accompaniment, not that the corn flakes were from a log cabin); a side order of homefries; a starter of a (HUGE) Dark Chocolate Doughnut with Chinese Five Spice; and a medium cuppa Mr. Espresso® (no idea what blend/roast, though)

(Yesterday happened to be National Doughnut Day ~ and just why doesn't this very important holiday get as much recognition as Christmas or the Fourth of July? ~ so this was a pretty serendipitous breakfastary destination. I already had been planning on revisiting Citizen's Band and Pinkie's Bakery this month, anyway.)

(There is no real EweToobular juxtaselections between either Citizen's Band and Pinkie's Bakery and Johnny Cash and Steve Earle [that I am aware of, at least], the counter-lady at Pinkie's Bakery just happened to be playing Johnny Cash's version of this Steve Earle song and I felt like including both here.

And, yes, I am aware that C.W. McCall's novelty song from 1975 might have been a better juxtaselection for Citizen's Band, but weren't we all already forced to listen to that horrible song many times over back in the 70's? So, I "put the hammer down" on that idea right away, "good buddy".)

For the entire month of June, I am planning on doing all redo's (redux's? reduxes? redi?). So, I went back to Citizen's Band (and Pinkie's Bakery) (see previous 'blog-entry from October 26th, 2013) this morning for breakfast ("Brunch", whatever), Coffee, and doughnuts.

There are only about nine to ten items offered for "Brunch" (they do change the menu seasonally), so there were really only a few other options for stupid vegetarians from which to choose: (the simply enough-named) Benedict (poached eggs, Pinkie's buttermilk biscuit, Cotechino sausage, oven roasted tomato, and Hollandaise; which I would have ordered without the sausage stuff ~ I can't confirm this, but I think that "Cotechino" loosely translates from Italian as "dead, decaying porky product"); Huevos Rancheros (chorizo and fried eggs, housemade tortilla chips, salsa ranchera, black beans, avocado, and queso fresco; again, I would have ordered this without the chorizo stuff); or Standard Breakfast (3 eggs your way, levain toast, and homefries; this should have been my decision as the French Toast not only proved to be too much to finish, but I really didn't need any extra-added sugar-rush after the [HUGE] doughnut).

I sat outside at one of the two sidewalk tables for two in front of Pinkie's Bakery eating my doughnut and drinking my Coffee while I waited the few minutes before Citizen's Band opened for the morning. I am not quite sure what the "five spices" are in Chinese Five Spice[1], but they went pretty nicely with the dark chocolate ganache[2], and there was also possibly some Maldon sea salt added on top. This was a good doughnut (and HUGE ~ easily the size of 2-3 regular-sized doughnuts), but a tad on the greasy side. They had a few other (HUGE) doughnuts offered this morning: Raspberry White Chocolate (which looked pretty good, too) or Almond Honey.

After the ultimately immediate sugar-rush of the (HUGE) doughnut, I wasn't really sure that I wanted to get a sweet dish for breakfast, but there really were only a few other options for stupid vegetarians, so I sucked it up (along with a little more of the Coffee) and decided on going with the Corn Flaked (and I love how they have made this into a verb) French Toast and a side order of homefries (because between the [HUGE] doughnut and French Toast, there were not nearly enough carbohydrates, of course). This ended up being two (HUGE/thick) slices of brioche bread. I saw another couple's meal come out a few minutes before mine did and was going to try to get them to just make me one slice, but as I was asking the waiter-server guy to ask the cooking-people to make me just one slice (so as not to waste any), they were already bringing out my meal. 

I did my best to eat as much of the meal as possible and did finish all of the potatoes (priorities) and only ended up eating about one and one-quarter slice of the French Toast. The "corn flaked" French Toast was pretty interesting and crusted both sides of the bread; as best as I can figure they dip the bread in the eggy-batter stuff first, then into a plate of corn flakes and grill it on both sides as you would normally make French Toast (well, as you would normally make French Toast, I can't say that I have ever made it for myself before). The blueberry compote was very tasty and sweet enough that I probably really didn't need to pour the little jar/bottle of maple syrup all over the top, too. The potatoes could have been a little bit crispier for my liking (the place had just opened for the morning and maybe the cooking-people hadn't had enough time to prepare them yet). 

Citizen's Band had for condimentary supplementation (I really didn't bother to ask what Pinkie's Bakery offered): Tabasco® Brand Pepper Sauce (Original Red Sauce), Tapatío® Salsa Picante Hot Sauce, and Crystal® Louisiana's Pure Hot Sauce. I went with some of my own Palo Alto Firefighters Pepper Sauce (Thanks, Brian!) and Hot Licks® Serrano Hot Sauce (Thanks again, Brian!) on different halves of the potatoes (I actually did think about using some of the Palo Alto Firefighters Pepper Sauce on one slice of French Toast as a "sweet-n-savoury" kinda thing, but I was already way too stuffed to give it a try).

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: (HUGE) Dark Chocolate Doughnut with Chinese Five Spice ~ 6.4 (based mostly on the size of the beast); Corn Flaked Brioche French Toast ~ 6.6


1. Actually, these usually include: Star Anise, Cloves, Chinese Cinnamon, Sichuan Pepper, and Fennel Seeds. There are many other variants, too; check with your local Chinese take-out joint or local doughnut bakery if you want to know for certain.

2. It seems that Billy-boy and his band of Microsoft Spell-checkering Nazis are too busy getting ready to foist Windows 10 on an unsuspecting public to get out and eat at a fancy-shmancy French bakery every now and then. They do not recognize this simple, everyday culinaristic term (and are giving me alternate suggestions of "panache" or "gouache"* ~ whatever the heck that is supposed to be).

Stupid, useless cunning linguist/pseudo-culinaristic pointer of the day:

"Ganache" comes from French and literally means "jowl", from Italian "ganascia", a modification of Greek "γναθος (gnathos)", meaning "jaw bone". How that is related any to a thick chocolate icing, I have no idea (but I am pretty sure that Billy-boy und seine Band von Braunhemden don't either).

*(Yes, because so many more people are familiar with this term. )

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