In my second edition of Game Day Eats, we’re highlighting San Francisco. This is a city I’ve always wanted to visit and have not yet made it to. I loved that all three of this recipes tie back to California’s history and two include a restaurant and a bakery that have open for 100+ years. It was a wonderful opportunity to revive my sourdough baking habit AND to try a local soup that I’ve wanted to try for a number of years… let’s get to it!
Seafood Cioppino | Recipe by Fit Slow Cooker Queen
Get the recipe here. I know what you’re thinking when you first see that this is a slow cooker recipe… seafood in a crock pot?! Absolutely not! You are correct, and rest assured that the seafood is only in the crock pot for the last 15-30 minutes. I love a good slow cooker recipe for convenience sake, but not all things are meant to be slow-cooked, especially seafood! We used barrimundi, shrimp and scallops in our cioppino. It was SO flavorful and hearty.
Cioppino is a tomato-based seafood stew. While of an Italian origin, it is attributed to North Beach fishermen in San Francisco as a stew prepared with whatever seafood was left from the day’s catch. Alioto’s #8 is the modern iteration of the restaurant that lays claim to bringing cioppino into restaurants. As the story goes, in 1925, Nunzio Alioto opened up a stall at #8 Fisherman’s Wharf and sold lunchtime items to Italian laborers.
Sourdough Bread | Recipe by Hostess at Heart
Get the recipe here. Sourdough is often associated with San Francisco because of its popularity during the California Gold Rush. The bread is durable (long lasting) and traditional San Francisco sourdough uses a strain of wild yeast that was easily accessible. The yeast strain and fermenting process lend a distinctive flavor to sourdough bread. A number of bakeries in California maintained their own starters for decades, which lends to a distinct flavor from each bakery, as well. Boudin is still open, more than 170 years after opening in 1849. Hand kneaded sourdough (vs. machine kneaded) often has large air bubbles in the crumb.
I’ve been experimenting with making sourdough since early 2020 (see some of my sourdough breadmaking articles here) and have maintained my own starter for about 1.5 years. It does not use a California strain of yeast, so it is not a true San Francisco sourdough, but I love the flavor and the sentiment remains!
This recipe I’ve linked is excellent if you’re just starting out making sourdough as it is really straight forward in direction and results in a high quality end result, even if you’re new to making sourdough.
The Cable Car Cocktail | Recipe by The Banq Cocktail Lounge
Get the recipe here. I had to laugh that the distinctive San Francisco cocktail uses spiced rum. Spiced rum is not my favorite and I had just used up the end of a handle of it I’d bought last Christmas to make eggnog. I was able to just buy a small bottle this time! The Cable Car cocktail is a rum and curacao drink that was inspired by the cable car tracks by the Starlight Room in San Francisco. The Starlight Room closed recently for renovations and a rebrand, but is located on the 21st floor of the Sir Francis Drake Hotel. Now that I’ve seen photos of this gorgeous historic hotel, it’s on my bucket list to stay there!
This cocktail was such a treat, from the combo of fresh lemon juice and triple sec to the cinnamon sugar rim. I’d definitely enjoy this drink again.