Ramadan has ended and we celebrated Eid this past Sunday. It was nice to have it on a non-school/work day so that everyone could enjoy it properly. I wanted to give someone Candied Lemon Slices as a gift since they looked delectable. I never made them before so I thought it’d be nice to try it, but I didn’t think to have a back-up. The instructions looked easy enough. But somehow mine went wrong somewhere. I let them out to dry for 24-hrs and the longer they sat out, the more uneatably bitter they got. Kind of like biting right into the rind of the lemon. Yeckh. The directions said that blanching the lemons would take care of it. But I guess it didn’t. However, they did look very pretty.
I was searching for other unique gifts and one of them called for dried lavender. I didn’t think it’d be difficult to find but I ended up searching high and low for it. Michael’s sells the craft kind but I needed the culinary one (I’ve been wanting to use lavender in baking too). Some store I called suggested to check out Penzey’s. I had never had heard of this place but was willing to try it out. I called them and yes! they carried it. They were located in the Heights. I had heard of the area, but never knew where it was. Up for an excursion? Definitely! I love exploring.
I headed down there Monday morning and was astonished to see the Heights tucked away in a corner. I easily found Penzey’s and they had all these different spices, rubs, mixes. They had jars out so you smell each thing. All of it smelled fresh and intense. The cinnamon smelled like REAL cinnamon. The lavender, oh how I love lavender, was exactly how it should of smelled. I ended up buying more items than I had expected.
I was curious to see more of the Heights and I fell in love right away. It was kind of like Rice Village and Upper Kirby but with a different aura. They had mom and pop shops, family owned restaurants, and several small town-esque shops. I plan on visiting soon again.
As I was heading home, I wanted to stop off at Minuti Coffee, a fairly new Italian coffee shop that I’ve been meaning to check out. I’ve been putting it off because last time I tried a new small coffee shop, they charged me $4 for a drink in which they merely blended store bought juice and ice. This time I read the reviews online and allll of them had nothing but praise. The prices were similar to Starbucks but they had free Wi-fi and a hip interior. It was kind of funny though when I walked in. Everyone was entranced in their work. No one was chilling or hanging out which made it a little awkward. I ordered a Mocha ‘regularti’ and was not disappointed. I like to support small business so I’ll be visiting Minuti for my coffee runs from now on. Oh, they also had this cool snack thing from Italy that looked like Swiss Rolls but it was actually Tiramasu which I learned that it means ‘pick me up’ in Italian.
Anyho, this post is getting way too long. To be continued….