I was looking for a savory scone in all the wrong places and I’d almost given up when I wandered into Paris Baguette, a French bakery inside Central Square’s Korean grocery store, H-Mart. What did I find? Three Cheese Edamame Bread, that’s what.
I don’t know if this is a Thing, but it sure was something. If it’s a something crossed with a something else in the mode of the chimerical cronut, those things would be savory bread pudding and edamame.
It was cheesy, salty, and oily for sure, edamame-y, only if you paid close attention, but it filled the savory scone void pretty well. I found a recipe that might be close to this item on Cookpad Japan: Edamame and Cheese Rolled Bread.
I know what you’re thinking, “silly cow, every day is cheese day!” Well you’re not wrong, but I’ve just learned that today is National Cheese Lover’s Day here in the USA. Says who? Who cares! Is that really where the apostrophe should go? I doubt it!
According to a nutty and herbaceous press release from the estimable Chris Lyons Communications, the Massachusetts Cheese Guild has some suggestions for this special day:
Boston, MA . . . (January 12, 2015) The 21 artisan cheesemakers of the 16-month-old MA Cheese Guild are a picky bunch. That’s what happens when you spend your every waking hour dealing with the intricacies of this ancient and magical process. Even those who sell it, or just eat a lot of it, have strong opinions. Take a tip or two from the MA Cheese Guild members below, and seek out a locally produced cheese to savor when National Cheese Lover’s Day rolls around on January 20:
Who am I to blog against the wind? We have a cheese guild, and you can join as one of three member types: “Artisan members are commercial cheesemakers who certify use of Massachusetts milk. Trade membership (retailers/wholesalers/distributors/ journalists) and Enthusiast membership is also available.”
If you’re so inclined, you can certify your status as a cheese enthusiast for just $25 a year. I count 20 artisan members on the site, so I’ve got a local cheesy bucket list of sorts to get working on. I hope you’ll seek out some local cheese today, whatever your locality.
Getting back to basics and spending more time in the 02139, I dropped in at Mariposa Bakery and got reacquainted with my old friend, the savory scone.
Mariposa offers several scones on some kind of rotation, but I always gravitate to the savory (try their pretzel rolls!) which usually means some combination of cheese and allium, in this case, cheddar scallion.
It’s early in the season so I’ll be kind, this was an entirely adequate scone. Not very cheesy, not very oniony, and a bit underdone in the middle. Buttery but not so flaky. If it were a madeline, it would remind you of a waiting room, and definitely need to be dipped in some tea.
I still love Mariposa and will be back, perhaps to sample a cheese sandwich next time.
Two weeks later, I kept my Cheese Weasel Day date with Roxy’s Grilled Cheese truck. You know how I like a simple menu: they offered five sandwiches, two add-ons and a single side.
What I really wanted was a grilled cheese sandwich made with sharp cheddar, ideally with bacon and avocado, most of the Green Muenster but not quite all of it. I just don’t dig the muenster cheese, and owing to the partially pre-assembled nature of Roxy’s sandwiches, some substitutions just can’t be made. I settled on the Rookie Melt, which was served up in just seven minutes.
Behold the Rookie Melt. I wonder if I should be offended by the name? It’s cheddar and tomato, griddled up just right. The cheddar could be sharper (but it’s certainly not as dull as muenster) and the tomato runs the risk of sliding out of the sandwich, but no grilled cheese rookie would let that happen.
I had it all planned out. In observance of Cheese Weasel Day, I would have lunch at Roxy’s Grilled Cheese truck at City Hall Plaza. As it turned out, Roxy was priorly engaged so the choice came down to Paris Creperie and the Chicken and Rice Guys. CNR had scary teeth on their truck and a long line so I went to Paris.
I ordered the Kale’in it! despite the cutesy name, because #kale, and promptly took the LevelUp reader offline.
The Kale’in it! contains chicken with a little spice, kale, parmesan, and garlic aioli. The chic paris stamp rubbed off on my hand but I didn’t care.
Honestly I don’t remember Paris Crepes being this good last year. The spice on the chicken was perfectly matched with the cheese, the kale still had some crunch, the crepe was thin and still a little wet on the inside, it was the total package, and unlike many food truck meals, it wasn’t padded out with an absurd side of rice or slaw or packed in a noxious styrofoam clamshell.
Viva la food trucks!
I had the strangest dream this weekend: I dreamed that people were hoarding precious balls of bright orange cheese. When I woke up this was on the radio: The FDA is cracking down on Mimolette, a wonderful cheddaresque French cheese. Mais pourquoi? Cheese Mites, that’s quoi. All you wusses better hold on to your hand sanitizer, because here’s a newsflash for you: cheese is alive. Yep, like beer and wine, bread and yogurt, there are tiny critters in there making cheese what it is. The FDA says there are too many such critters on Mimolette, so here in the USA, at least for now, we are at a Mimoloss. You know I’m all about the local cheese, but this is a cheesy way to win a trade war. I recommend you write your congressperson, or, if you’re close enough to the border, head up to Canada and buy yourself a Mimolot of mitey cheese.
Food truck season’s back.
Grilled cheese with bacon and soup:
perfect comfort food.
More trucky goodness: Boston Food Truck Infographic and Boston Food Truck Schedule. Keep on truckin’!
Did you know that buttery pastries can help reduce the risk of macular degeneration? You probably didn’t know that because it’s probably not true, but that didn’t stop me from picking up a savory scone at 3 Little Figs on Somerville’s Highland Avenue on the way to see my eye doctor. Hey, it’s not as bad as having a tall soy mocha on your way to the dentist.
3 Little Figs is a wonderful little coffee shop bakery serving a range of sandwiches, too. I first found them at the Somerville Winter Market where I got addicted to their vegan chocolate spice cookies. I’ve since been to the shop and had the goat cheese and herb scone twice. It’s impressive.
I tried to get a clear shot but every time I moved the sone, flakes and crumbs came off it. It’s that delicate and that flaky. (Hey, some of my best friends are delicate and flaky) The goat cheese is more pronounced than at Dwell Time but not overpowering at all. What stands out in this scone is the buttery flaky sconiness of it. It’s like the stocky jolly cousin of the skinny neurotic croissant. A superb example of the savory scone.
Can it be we’ve gone two years without a Savory Scone Update? Well, let me assure you, I have not gone two years without a savory scone, that’s for sure. My new local spot, Dwell Time in Cambridge, offers a nice scone selection, including more than one savory option! At my first visit, I tried the whole wheat bacon scallion scone, pictured blog right.
It was small, but that’s not a bad thing since your average scone is 105% butter and has more calories than you’l burn in a lifetime of sitting in coffee shops writing blogs. It was on the crumbly slide, as opposed to the sometimes chewy type of scone. Visible bacon bits, a good sign for sure. It most certainly hit the spot. Highly recommended.
At a later visit, I tried the Goat Cheese Scallion Scone. I must say the goat cheese was subtle, and that’s not the vibe I usually get from goat cheese. But here’s what sets this scone apart: the scallion was actually visible and tastable, like it is in the better scallion pancakes you can sometimes get in Chinese restaurants, or , if you’re super lucky, in the homemade kind.
A touch of spring onion-ness and buttery goodness. I don’t think I’ll ever go back to sweet scones.
Sometimes, a package is wrapped so beautifully, you don’t want to open it. When the package contains food, I can get over that feeling pretty fast.
Here’s something you may not know: everybody’s favorite West End French-themed Korean deli with a kick-ass salad bar, Bonne Chance, serves the best-wrapped breakfast sandwiches you’ll ever see, even if you don’t get them to go.
They’re not just pretty on the outside. Here’s my standard, egg and cheese on wheat toast. Have you ever seen such perfectly toasted toast? Sometimes I think they use a mold of some kind to make the egg exactly the size (and shape – I’ve had this on an English muffin too) of the bread.
Inside the sandwich? Perfectly cooked egg, a nice buttery salty thing going on. The cheese? Well, you know how I am about the cheese. It’s not in a class with that other Frenchified breakfast sammie, l’alternative, but it sure is a nice way to start the day.