|It does look a bit like pretzel salt, I guess.|
Friday’s fika: Jasmine tea at home with Martas skurna chokladkakor -- handsome sliced chocolate cookies with a sprinkling of Swedish pearl sugar on top. From a Fika recipe, of course. Such a great cookbook! Not a single recipe has disappointed me yet. These were easy and especially delicious when dipped for a split second into the flowery jasmine tea. They’re not overly chocolatey, which I like. The kids also approved.
Mark did not. He said, “Do you want the truth? These get a C-. They have no flavor except for the salt on top.”
Possibly there’s a problem with his taste buds.
Today’s fika: cinnamon toast and a cortado with Mark at a tiny, popular, and really peculiar cafe called Trouble in San Francisco. John Gravois in the Pacific Standard describes Trouble as a “willfully obscure coffee shop with barely any seating in a cold, inconvenient neighborhood” and I can’t do much better than that. Trouble sells whole coconuts, cinnamon toast, espresso drinks, shots of grapefruit juice, and that’s about it. Gravois explains the reasons for this kooky and limited menu in a This American Life segment on the shop and its mentally troubled owner. A fascinating story, if you have 15 minutes to spare and want a slice of San Francisco life.
|Baristas here have reportedly yelled at customers who take pictures. No one can call me a coward.|
Anyway, Trouble was the germ of the much-mocked San Francisco toast craze but I wholeheartedly approve of this trend. Cinnamon toast is delicious. Better than cupcakes. Easier to eat than pie. Less pretentious than cronuts. Obviously, you can make toast more cheaply at home, but you can also make coffee (and almost everything) more cheaply at home. At Trouble they slice fluffy white bread extra thick, like Texas toast, then generously slather it with butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. I don’t want to imply there’s any special wizardry happening here. It’s cinnamon toast; you’ve eaten it before. But the magic of cinnamon toast -- any cinnamon toast -- is potent and I’m surprised it took so long for people to start selling it. I wish even more places served warm, buttery cinnamon toast.
Fika-wise, Trouble was a mixed bag. Mark and I agreed that Trouble’s cinnamon toast gets an A+ , but that its ambiance -- loud, cramped, chilly, and dominated by brusque, intimidating baristas -- was totally unsuitable for a proper fika.
Definitely worth checking out, though, if you’re ever in the neighborhood.