Taste of the week: Panadería Sabor a México
On a recent Sunday morning, I was looking at a wall of pastries, cookies and rolls when a customer walked in and quickly scanned the display cases. She looked worried. “Where are the churros?” she asked. “I need it for my coffee!” Cake donut sticks sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar were located elsewhere on a tray; Luckily, Boulder’s Panadería Sabor a México is the kind of place where anyone can satisfy their sweet tooth craving.
There are sugar cookies that look like slices of watermelon, crispy horns full of custard, and hostess-looking cupcakes. My favorites are the fruit empanadas. I try not to pay attention to the gorgeous frosted tres leches cake.
Besides being a Mexican sweets lover’s dream, the walls of the Boulder shop are lined with cheeses, cream and other essential ingredients for Central American dishes.
La Panadería is located in an international oasis, a shopping mall that also features the new location of La Mariposa Restaurant and Margarita House Mexican Restaurant, Boulder Pho, Indian Deli, Jin Chan Zhang Restaurant and Asian Food Market. Within about a block are Gabee Coffee, Curry & Kebob, Ali Baba Grill, Mediterranean Market and Deli, Vietnamese Restaurant Chez Thuy, and El Valle Market.
Drink of the week: Festival Collaboration
By Michael Casey
When was the last time you had a beer brewed with ramen noodles? Or an IPA loaded with Sichuan peppers? Well, on Saturday, April 2, you can catch the Collaboration Festival, the annual celebration of the brewing spirit of the Colorado Brewers Guild. Over 100 breweries will serve unique beers and the Guild will sell merchandise. A handful of beer writers, including yours truly, will be signing their books. Did you get a copy of Boulder County Beer, the story of a ragtag gang of hoodlums who made Boulder County the birthplace of the craft beer movement? Come and I’ll be happy to sign a copy for you. The Collaboration Festival is Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Fillmore Auditorium in Denver. collaborationbeerfest.com
Boulder Recipe Flashback: Karen is in the Country
Karen’s in the Country was a popular brunch and dinner destination at 1900 Plaza Drive in Louisville which originally opened downtown as Karen’s Country Kitchen, current site of The Huckleberry. This recipe was shared by the restaurant in the late 1990s.
Almond Crusted Karen’s In the Country Banana sauce tuna
1 6-ounce tuna steak (or other firm-fleshed fish)
1/2 cup whole almonds
2 teaspoons freshly cracked black pepper
4 to 5 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh shallot
1/2 fresh banana, sliced (slightly unripe)
2 ounces (approximately) Puerto Rican rum
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (approx.)
Salt, to taste
3 tablespoons butter, softened
Chop the almonds in a food processor – medium crumbs, not fine. Place the almonds in a bowl and mix with cracked black pepper. Press the mixture evenly all over the tuna steak. Heat about two tablespoons of olive oil in a flat skillet over medium heat. Sauté the tuna on both sides until it begins to sear. Remove from skillet and set aside. Add another two tablespoons of olive oil, shallots and banana slices, and cook for two to three minutes. Reduce the heat, add the rum, lime juice and salt, and reduce the volume by half. Turn off the fire. When the sauce has cooled slightly, add the butter and mix, taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Pour the sauce onto a plate, place the tuna on top and serve with steamed jasmine rice or basmati rice with toasted coconut.
Culinary calendar: In the garden
Boulder’s Benevolence Orchard & Gardens is hosting a community fruit tree grafting workshop on April 9, benevolenceorchard.com… Slow Food Boulder is hosting a free seed exchange on April 13 at the Mountain Fountain in Hygiene. Local farms and home gardeners bring, exchange or donate seeds. …Claudia Bouvier of the award-winning Pastificio in Boulder teaches a handmade pasta class on April 14 at Growing Gardens, growgardens.org … The Blind Cafe Experience April 15-17 at The Dairy is a dinner party hosted in the dark at 100 % with music by Dango Rose, Richie Flores and others, thedairy.org