After getting up at 4:45 in the morning to catch our flight, my mom and I landed in Austin around 10:30 yesterday. Once we were settled in at my aunt’s apartment, we got lunch at Texas French Bread. It’s practically around the corner from my aunt’s place, and in addition to baked goods, offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner featuring local ingredients. My mom and I both got the roasted quail salad, which was simple and delicious: perfectly roasted quail, tender beets, walnuts, and arugula with a red wine vinaigrette.
On the way out, we saw the coolest thing: a stone bundt cake! There was a whole one (see picture below), and a piece of one serving as a doorstop. I love this idea and am tempted to make my own cement-and-pebble bundt cake when I get home. Made in mini bundt cake pans, they would make really cute paperweights. I’m not sure how the process would go, though–would I still be able to bake cakes in my bundt pan after that?
When we got back to the apartment, I took an amazing two-hour nap, and spent some time snuggling with my aunt’s cat, Mr. Plumpius. Isn’t he fabulous and ridiculous? I love big cats.
We had some Tex-mex for dinner, which wasn’t bad at all, but not fabulous enough to share with you.
After reading about it on What’s Gaby Cooking, I made brunch reservations at La Condesa for today. I loved it! My mom and I met up with one of her childhood friends there, and we had the best time. My mom and I both got Huevos Condesa (she keeps copying my orders because she knows I pick the best dishes), which consisted of free-range rotisserie chicken, bacon, potatoes, spinach, and poblano peppers with fried eggs and a delicious ranchero-style sauce on top. I cheated on my whole30 and ate the cotija cheese that came on top AND a few corn tortillas. Shame.
The waiter heard it was my mom’s birthday, so he brought over a delicious treat on the house: a scoop of cake batter ice cream and a pecan sandy. Since I had already cheated, and it was her BIRTHDAY, I had a few bites. Double shame. The ice cream was really good, though. It reminded me of the cake batter lip gloss I loved so much in middle school.
I didn’t get any pictures of it because my phone ran out of battery, but the interior at La Condesa was really fun. One whole wall was a colorful mural, and there were all sorts of fun lights and lanterns hanging everywhere. There was an upstairs section with a bar and some armchair seating, and two outdoor patios with lots of fun cacti planters.
After brunch, my mom and I headed over to the mother of all Whole Foods stores: the Lamar flagship store. If you’re a Whole Foods fan and find yourself in Austin, you have to check it out. It’s like a small town. There’s a bar, a walk-through beer refrigerator, and several cafe sections with seating that serve different kinds of food, including barbecue. There is also a fun slanted escalator you can go down with your grocery cart on the way out. Since the wedding tomorrow includes a potluck dinner, we picked up ingredients to make a paleo & gluten-free version of these almond blueberry pie bars. Stay tuned for the results!
One more picture to share: I spotted this sign in a little rotary on the way to Texas French Bread. You know all those Keep Austin Weird stickers? Whoever doctored up this sign is helping with that, and I love it.
One more thing I love about being in Texas: my mom gets her accent back! All of a sudden, “yes” is a two-syllable word.
That’s it for now, y’all.