“Fries! An Illustrated Guide to the World’s Favorite Food”
$17; 143 pages; Princeton Architectural Press; www.papress.com
Fries move from the side to center stage in this new book by Blake Lingle. Through five entertaining chapters, he explains the origin of fries (possibly ancient Egypt or Rome), where fries “grow” (mostly in factories), types of fries (including the tornado and the puff) and their condiment partners (mayo is big in Holland). Spicing the book are color pics of fries in all their incarnations.
Farmhouse Culture Gut Shot
$5.99 for a 16-ounce container; Whole Foods and other retailers; www.farmhouseculture.com
Probiotics are popping up in just about everything these days, but this new drink from Farmhouse Culture, the Watsonville organic purveyor best known for its sauerkraut, puts a salty twist on the trend. In flavors such as smoked jalapeño and ginger beet, this strong elixir can be taken straight, poured into salad dressings and sauces or mixed into cocktails.
Casa Sanchez Hot Salsa Roja
$4-$5.30 for a 15-ounce container; local supermarkets; casasanchezsf.com
We’ve never found any commercial salsa that comes as close to homemade as Casa Sanchez, a family-owned business in Millbrae. Its 14 organic salsas are made from fresh organic ingredients, using recipes from “Great Grandma and Grandpa Sanchez,” who came to the Bay Area from Mexico in 1924. Our go-to is Hot Salsa Roja, with tomatoes, onions, peppers, cilantro, sea salt and garlic. The texture is chunky, the flavors deep, and the heat just right.
Eatuscany Caffe Chocolate Lemon Tart
$4 per slice; 1801 L St., Sacramento; www.eatuscanycaffe.com
The tart, tangy lemons in this velvety pie balance perfectly with the creamy, thick chocolate center. The result is a bright sweet-savory combination, held together in a flaky, buttery crust.
Isigny Sainte-Mère Creme al la Vanille de Madagascar
$5.99 for a 7-ounce container; Nugget; www.isigny-ste-mere.com
Isigny Sainte-Mère is a French collective of dairy farmers that makes really good stuff. That includes this hard-to-find organic whipped cream, made with cream, milk, sugar and bourbon vanilla. It’s luxurious, light and not too sweet. In other words, c’est magnifique.
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