Sunny days on the search for new foods

Today the cold suddenly broke, and it was 62 and sunny on my drive home. I took off my coat and scarf, donned the sunglasses, rolled down the windows and cranked up the Jack’s Mannequin, and took a slight detour on the way home to pick up something interesting for dinner. Chris is off at a conference in Philly for the weekend, so I’ve been on my own for the past two nights. I deserve a random dinner treat.

I wandered around looking for something to catch my eye. Pizza was too boring; I wasn’t quite feeling the sushi or anything else Asian. That’s when I happened upon a Greek specialty store and, on a whim, ventured in. A nice little old lady greeted me, and in a sudden bolt of inspiration, I remembered that amazing Greek dip that Marie made for me once, but couldn’t think of the name. Not seeing a packet of spices that rang any memory-bells, I described it and asked the lady, who promptly scooped out a small container of tzatziki (cucumber dip, they were calling it, I guess to be easy on the dumb Americans 😉 ). I couldn’t decide on what to get for dinner. There was spanakopita (which the lady pronounced with such a beautiful accent, I was ashamed to try and repeat the name after her), a lasagna-esque dish, and meat pies (more hot pies? anyone?). I couldn’t decide–there’s a surprise–so I asked the wonderful lady for her opinion. She gave me a knowing smile and tapped the glass above the spanakopita, replying in a wonderfully accent voice, “My daughter makes the best spanakopita around. You try this, you’ll be back telling me how good it was. You’ll see.” I couldn’t refuse.

And thus, now that I’ve eaten some wonderfully refreshing tzatziki and warmed pita bread, my spanakopita is in the oven, my apartment smells glorious, and I have high hopes for my main course. =)

On my excursion today, I also scoured Squirrel Hill to find bagels for my weekend with Resa and had to settle for The Bagel Factory–decent bagels, but I was hoping for a neat little bakery’s bagels. I neglected to think about the fact that most of the really Jewish bakeries (that probably have amazing bagels) close early on Friday. So 5 pm on a Friday was not the best time to be shopiing. However, I think it would be difficult to find a bad bagel in Squirrel Hill. I think we’ll be in good shape. I don’t know where we’ll end up this weekend. Maybe we’ll check out the markets along the Strip District; maybe we’ll get dessert at Gullifty’s–I hear it’s devine. Maybe we’ll hit up Primanti Bros. just to say we’ve done it, or perhaps a breakfast at Pamela’s would be in order. We’ll probably enjoy a quality brew or two and the Church Brew Works. But if there are new foodie adventures to be had, we’ll find them and all post them.

Till then, foodiesuzy, over and out. =)


10 responses

  1. Tzatziki is my most favorite Greek food, followed closely by spanakopita. I remember being in Corfu, Greece, on a chartered boat, traveling so-so close to the Albanian border, eating fresh, homemade tzatziki with fresh, homemade bread. Oh my stars. You’re bringing back the memories, Suzy…
    I wonder if there are any specialty Greek stores around here.

    • Glad I could incite some of those memories and longings for Greek food. See, this is just another reason to come visit Pittsburgh. I’m sure there are some awesome Greek places just waiting to be discovered! =)
      I am jealous about your story though. It sounds quite amazing.
      Miss ya! Keep hanging in there with the demon children and stupid people at the gym! =)

  2. ‘ sounds inviting….. ‘ very envious
    What a great thing to be able to walk around and just “happen” upon speciality shops to satisfy the moment’s foodie desire. ‘ guess that’s what living in the “big city” is all about, making this suburban foodie jealous.
    What a treat!
    Spanakopita is one of my favorites, but unfortunately, I have never had some real home-made, right out of the oven, there and then kind of treat. I can almost smell and taste it…. I have never had tzatziki, let alone a very nice home-made one….
    ‘ great to hear those places exist, and that a real, true foodie is enjoying them, and sharing experiences….
    thanks for that! Continue to enjoy, and share!
    Bon Appetit!!! (as the great Julia Child would say) =)

    • Re: ‘ sounds inviting….. ‘ very envious
      It is pretty neat. I was actually thinking about how cool it was as I was walking around. There were so many bakeries I could have gone into, and a number of little delis and produce places to buy breads and meats and veggies. So much cooler than a grocery store! =)
      We’ll have to get you some spanakopita when you come. Even if you bring it home with you, it’ll be a nice treat! ❤

    • I’m just glad that someone got it! I was thinking that…and then I was a little freaked out and quite glad that I went for the spanakopita instead. I wasn’t feeling like a cannabal that day. Maybe some other time. =)

  3. Dinner at Church Brew Works and breakfast at Pamela’s was wonderful. I had an absolutely marvelous time in Pittsburgh. We’ll have to do it again sometime, hopefully for a bit longer.

    • I’m so glad! It was truly a marvelous weekend, and I can’t wait until you come up again! =) Next time it will have to be longer, and we will make Chris drive us to Church or to Sharp Edge (another awesome beer place) so we can sample a few different beers. Maybe next time, it will even be sunny! =P

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