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The Food Party!

By Laura Stec

E-mail Laura Stec

About this blog: I've been attracted to food for good and bad reasons for many years. From eating disorder to east coast culinary school, food has been my passion, profession & nemesis. I've been a sugar addict, a 17-year vegetarian, a food and en...  (More)

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Amazing Food, Unexpected Places

Uploaded: Nov 2, 2022

Did you hear the KQED Forum show last week on food treasures?

The program reported on heavenly food finds hiding in unexpected areas like gas stations and strip malls. It introduces listeners to places like a Filipino-themed ice cream shop and bakery in Tracy off Interstate 205 and I have a few suggestions too. Ever been to the Pescadero burrito stand inside the gas station at the west end of town? How about Hangry Planet in the San Bruno mini mart?

It’s such a win to find these places.

Here’s a recent discovery. Went for a hike at Bedwell Bayfront Park (end of Marsh Rd. east of 101) and kept exploring afterwards in the few shops nearby. Stopped into your standard-looking Mexican grocer, Mi Terra Linda to check out the spices and dried chilies and discovered the unexpected!

Never a fan of standard Mexican pastries, these looked different. Two racks of homemade cakes filled with real fruit and custard.

It was hard to figure out what to do - there weren’t any prices or bags and I quickly got a feeling non-Hispanics don’t shop here that often. After a minute or two a woman appeared from the kitchen with a newly baked tray of cakes. I drooled while she smiled. "Peach” she said and handed me a tray and tongs to choose from the bounty.

In addition to Pastel Durazno (peach cake) I chose a really fresh, super moist sweet corn cake.

The total came to $3.00 for two large cakes, plus $1 for the tip jar. I munched on those delicious goodies all week long. What a find - hiding in plain sight among an old group of shops in east Menlo Park.

Any amazing food in unexpected places come to your mind?

Mi Terra Linda
1209 Willow Rd, Menlo Park
Open 7 AM – 9 PM daily

- photos by LSIC
Local Journalism.
What is it worth to you?


Posted by Randy Jessup, a resident of another community,
on Nov 5, 2022 at 11:52 am

Randy Jessup is a registered user.

My favorite 'go-to' meal when limited to a 7-11 or gas station is Frito Pie.

All it takes is a bag of Fritos slit open down the middle with a dollop of house chili and a spork. How easy is that?

The next does one eat 'healthy' when relegated to a CVS or county jail commissary offerings that only list candy, chips, and cookies as delectable food options?

Posted by Laura Stec, a Mountain View Online blogger,
on Nov 5, 2022 at 12:14 pm

Laura Stec is a registered user.

@Randy, didn't you just write this a few weeks ago? Eating healthy is about options. Don't think about what you can not eat; learn to eat new things that are delicious and good for you.

Posted by Lauren Capers, a resident of Stanford,
on Nov 5, 2022 at 2:41 pm

Lauren Capers is a registered user.

@Randy...the last place I would go to eat in a pinch is a 7-11 or CVS. The food offerings there are very unhealthy.

Keep some fruit around. It won't kill you.

Posted by Brandon Quinn, a resident of Old Mountain View,
on Nov 5, 2022 at 3:28 pm

Brandon Quinn is a registered user.

Is it possible to make jerky out of press/dried tofu?

Posted by Laura Stec, a Mountain View Online blogger,
on Nov 6, 2022 at 7:57 am

Laura Stec is a registered user.

Brandon, look online. I saw a few sources, as well as oven dried and dehydrated DIY

Posted by Helen Kim, a resident of Blossom Valley,
on Nov 6, 2022 at 8:42 am

Helen Kim is a registered user.

Unlike conventional beef jerky, tofu jerky must be kept refrigerated to avoid spoilage and bacteria.

Tofu jerky is not suitable for extended backpacking trips and excursions with no refrigeration as there is only a two-hour window at room temperature before it starts to go bad.

Posted by Laura Stec, a Mountain View Online blogger,
on Nov 6, 2022 at 11:39 am

Laura Stec is a registered user.

Great Food in Unexpected locations is this week's theme so let's keep toward that comment line. But in response, there are SO MANY kinds of vegan (non refrigerated) jerky. Many are made with mushroom or pea protein, but there are soy-based too.

Posted by Paul Bustamante, a resident of Cuesta Park,
on Nov 9, 2022 at 3:55 pm

Paul Bustamante is a registered user.

• Great Food in Unexpected locations...

Sadly the midpeninsula is becoming better known for Mediocre (and overpriced) Food in Expected locations.

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