Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Thank you, Loulou!

For the past few weeks, I've been writing a grant proposal to get some funding for the development of an exciting cancer therapy technology. These grants take a lot out of me, and I need a little extra help in the morning to get myself together when I am writing. My mind needs more nourishing and my stomach needs more pampering than my usual breakfast can provide... Luckily, two weekends ago, I met my breakfast savior in Berkeley.

Following recommendations from Sam at Becks & Posh, I ventured to the Berkeley Farmer's Market to check out the scene. I've been exploring different Farmer's Markets lately, and the Berkeley one sounded like the perfect anti-Ferry Building Farmer's Market. I thought the FBFM was expensive, over-hyped, and somewhat geared towards tourists and their non-essential grocery shopping - it didn't seem like the regular joe's market that I prefer. I liked the Berkeley market better, but I still think the local Pleasanton Farmer's Market offers the most competitive prices with matched quality and variety of organic produce. BUT, I went back to the Berkeley market again this weekend. Yes, you guessed it! I went back to Berkeley because my breakfast savior is only available at Berkeley and not at Pleasanton!

lou lou
Loulou's rhubarb grapefruit jam is simply amazing. It has a wonderful grapefruit scent with a tangy tartness and that unique texture and flavor that rhubarb provides to all things sweet. Rhubarb is a relatively new addition to my life, and I only learned about its existence a few years ago in NC. The bakery where I worked made terrific strawberry-rhubarb galettes, and that was the only context in which I knew about rhubarb. From the little exposure I have, I think rhubarb lends texture, flavor, and scent - my three most pleasurable senses - without overpowering the other flavors. Mr. Rubard would be awarded the Best Supporting Actor Oscar for its roles in both the strawberry-rhubarb galette from the Weaver Street Market Bakery and in Loulou's rhubarb grapefruit jam.

lou lou jam
I cannot resist Loulou's jam on my toast in the morning, and sometime last week, I was so disheartened when I finished the entire jar in three days. Yes, a whole entire jar of jam in three days. I couldn't believe it myself. But those three days were extremely productive writing days. Loulou's jam for breakfast seemed to help me think critically and my proposal writing flowed with ease!

sunrise jam
I went back to Berkeley this weekend to restock on my jam, since I still have quite a bit of tinkering left to do on my proposal. And this time, I was prepared. I bought three jars. That was Saturday AM. It is Tuesday PM, and I am now down one jar... The top jar you see in the photos basking in the morning sun - GONE. Good thing I got a picture of it before I devoured it.

I hope Loulou is prepared for an onslaught of scientists knocking on her door when they find out the secret to my scientific prowess (ha!) is in her jam... I hope she saves me her rhubarb grapefruit jam at all costs. The future of cancer research could be in her hands...


David said...

Those jams look delish - that's what we need down here in Oz, more good jams. We've only really got one kind: Hank's Jam.

PS: I was really impressed with your 5 sushi-types. I'm still trying to understand Japanese flavouring as it is so tricky and subtle in my mind.

Sam said...

HA! that's funny. I ws there on Saturday restocking my Blood orange and rosemary. But I was also blown away by the rhubarb so I have one of those too. + I got the strawberry one for my strawberry-mad friend's birthday too.

I love the lady who makes the jam. She's so quirky and funny and nice to talk to. She was telling me about the problems she was having with her rose petals. i hope she has managed to work it out cos I like the sound of rose petal jam too.

Unlike you, I put my Loulou's Garden Jam on Greek yoghurt. It's SO good. oh yes.
glad you like it too!

Alice said...

Carpal Fish,

These jams are rare in Japan too! Someone was asking me earlier about what they think they should take back as gifts to a Japanese family. I didn't think about it until you mentioned it, but I think I'll suggest Loulou's jam to her!

By the way, I'm making your raviolis from Paper Chef this weekend!


I also LOVE my gorgeous jam in yogurt too, but sparing so, just to make sure I have enough left for my toast! Thank you for introducing me to such a wonderful breakfast treat!

Anonymous said...

Oooh, I want to eat some! Have you tried the June Taylor james? I'm going to be up there next weekend, but I am going to miss the farmer's market, so no delicious jam for me. So sad.

Alice said...

Hi, Mariko-san,

No, I haven't tried June Taylor jams. I'll have to look into that for sure! Nothing like tasty jams to get me out of bed!

Sam said...

You will find some info about June Taylor jams on Chez Pim.
She loves them.

I think they are more expensive than Loulous

Fatemeh Khatibloo-McClure said...

Alice -
The June Taylor jams are the ones I was thinking of the other day with the peels in syrup.