In praise of Raleigh

Includes: American Meltdown food truck; Sugarland, Market and Cupcake Mayhem, all in Raleigh, NC

Well, once again I find myself playing catch-up in this space. I can offer no substantial excuse for being so sluggish with blogging — just having too much fun, I suppose.

So here goes with another of my (starting to become a tradition) hodge-podge posts.

First I must enthuse for just a minute about today’s lunch. This nice breakfast-tartine-for-lunch was inspired by my purchase of French breakfast radishes from Double-T Farm at the season’s first Saturday Market yesterday (yay, it’s back! and yay for all of Raleigh’s outstanding neighborhood farmers markets).

I found the recipe online: good bread slathered with Greek yogurt, topped with sliced breakfast radishes and drizzled with honey. Since it was on the sweet side, my peppery arugula salad dressed simply with evoo, lemon juice and pepper was the perfect tangy counterpoint.

American Meltdown

I recently had the chance to try a sandwich from the not-quite-two-month-old American Meltdown food truck — which specializes in, you guessed it, “melts.” (Yay, Raleigh, for finally allowing food trucks! difficult though the city has made it for the poor vendors …) What you see below is the Hangover.

A simple-yet-perfect combination of pimiento cheese, a fried egg and salsa verde sandwiched between toasted white bread. I wasn’t hungover, but I’m certain it would be welcome in that state, so it’s aptly named.

Sugarland

(Yay, Chapel Hill’s Sugarland for opening a satellite branch in Raleigh’s Cameron Village!) Raleigh’s outlet doesn’t have the same wide variety of baked goods and other offerings as the Chapel Hill original. But I don’t care. Know why? Because they have plenty of gelato and cupcakes — both of which I adore.

I only had room for one treat on my first visit, so I can’t vouch for the cupcakes’ quality. But as you can see from the snap above, they look fantastic.

                  

I loved my half Mexican chocolate, half fruits of the forest gelato, though. I think I’d have to say it’s the best gelato I’ve had in Raleigh since Silvia’s closed years ago.

But now my mind can’t seem to shake the thought of cupcakes. I just might have to make a run after I finish with this post.

Market

Market restaurant celebrated its two-year anniversary Friday night with live music, a local beer special and free strawberry cupcakes for all. (Yay for chef Chad’s success story, and his eatery’s focus on fresh and local.)

I went with one friend who had never dined there before, and bumped into yet more friends — a couple — who were newbies as well. We had to start with the Crack Fries, of course.

I don’t allow myself to indulge in fries that often, but hey, what with the anniversary and first experiences and all, it seemed appropriate. If you haven’t had them yet, just imagine double-fried, thin-sliced potatoes topped with very finely grated asiago, herbs, green onions and truffle oil (not too heavy a hand, thank goodness), served with house-made ketchup and garlic aioli.

I chose the catch of the day entree: bluefish served on lentils, lettuces and May peas, topped with poblano chutney. A well-seasoned, zesty spring dish.

I’m looking forward to dining at the newer — and hopefully larger — location when Market moves.

Cupcake Mayhem

(Yay for cupcakes! Again.) How is it possible that I’ve not heard of Cupcake Mayhem before now?! How long have they been around?!

I’m sorry I don’t have a photo. I quickly grabbed a free mini at a festival in downtown Raleigh yesterday and popped it into my mouth. It stopped me short. Holy moly. My sample was a Cinnamon Snitch (very clever names from this mother-and-two-daughter team whose business boasts the slogan So Good It’s a Crime): snickerdoodle cake with cinnamon buttercream frosting.

Oh my. Childhood snickerdoodle cookie memories bundled up into a tiny, scrumptious cake.

I’ve learned on the website that they’re at the Midtowne Farmers Market this season. So, clearly, more cupcakes are in my future.

In fact …

I couldn’t even finish writing this Cupcake Mayhem bit before driving to Cameron Village to Sugarland. (Yay for them staying open until 10 p.m.!)

And then I had to run into the Teeter to buy some milk. (I’m not drinking dairy milk these days — switched over to almond milk in my cereal. But I can’t drink straight out of a glass. Eeewww.)

See, here’s proof that I’m not lying about the late-evening cupcake drive:

But you’ll just have to wait until tomorrow for your dessert description. Enough tonight, already.

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About atarheeltastes

I'm a passionate foodie who started this "temporary" blog during a gustatory tour of Tuscany. I decided to continue, since I love to dream about, plan for, prepare, eat and write about food!
This entry was posted in Raleigh, NC, Restaurants. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to In praise of Raleigh

  1. Rachel says:

    OMG! The descriptions and the pictures. I am jones for cupcakes at 9:30 am. You are one dangerous lady.

  2. Rachel says:

    Sorry for the typo. Jones-ing for cupcakes.

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