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Nashua NH: seeking various recs


Ktepi
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The mozzarella IS good! I picked some up yesterday on y'all's recommendation. I almost picked up some of the tomatoes to have with it.

The Concord grapes are also very good, the best I've bought in a store -- I don't know if they're theirs or not, but they're very fresh. If I hadn't bought so many apples, I'd wish I'd bought enough grapes for a pie.

Anyway, I finally made it to Blood Farm, and highly recommend it -- though I also recommend calling in an order in advance. There wasn't a whole lot in the display cases other than the supermarket cuts, plus some pork roasts, good lamb cuts, and goat (chops and stew meat). But they were able to go in the back and bag me up a bunch of pig tails, clearly wondering why I wanted them, and they smoke a lot of meats -- including lamb, which I've tried to have people smoke for me in the past, to no avail. My mother says their ground beef is excellent; I picked up a package of it, some stew beef for goulash, stew goat, a chine-end pork roast, and ground lamb. They'll give you a price list if you ask for it, too.

It's a very no-frills place, and easy to miss while you're driving by, if you aren't looking for it.

Prices seemed about the same as the supermarket, mitigated by the fact that more cheap (but worthwhile) cuts are available. They did a lot of business while we were there, too -- it was twenty minutes before closing, and in the five to ten minutes I was there, five different people came in to pick up orders. They'd just UPSed something to the Boston Museum of Science, too, I saw the shipping slip on the counter :)

Between Lull and Blood, I'm really a happy camper right now. Okay, and the whoopie pies at Hannaford's. I don't know when in God's name they started selling whoopie pies in stores, but I hope they never stop.

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Bill, I'm glad you had a good experience with Blood Farm. I didn't know they would smoke stuff for you -- great to know!

As much as I love fresh mozzarella, I have to admit I'm all mozzarellaed out -- with the bumper crop of tomatoes I had in August/September and the availability of buffalo milk mozzarella at Costco, maybe next summer.

Diana Burrell, freelance writer/author

The Renegade Writer's Query Letters That Rock (Marion Street Press, Nov. 2006)

DianaCooks.com

My eGullet blog

The Renegade Writer Blog

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Haha -- I love pigs' tails and the other odd parts of the pig, it's a combination of all those years in the South and Fergus Henderson's Nose to Tail.

I froze some of them to use for feijoada at some point in the future -- black bean stew with as many parts of the pig as possible.

The others, I had for lunch today with Brussels sprouts: braised them for two hours until the skin was soft, rolled them in cornmeal and cayenne, and roasted them for twenty minutes until the skin crisped up a little. With all the little bones, they're a lot like turkey necks surrounded by pork skin.

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The Amherst Farmers Market, which was held on the Common all summer, continues through the winter indoors at Salzburg Square. The market features vegetables, eggs, dairy, meat, fish, artisan breads, NH wine, flowers, conifers, soaps and other New Hampshire made products. Hours in November will be Thursday 11-7, Friday and Saturday 11-4 and all week Thanksgiving week.

Salzburg Square is located on Rte 101, near Horace Greeley Road, just past Black Forest Bakery if you're heading east.

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My one complaint about Hannaford's: no rye flour! I mean, I can get it at Harvest Market, which is no further away, so it's not a hardship. I was just surprised, I didn't think it was all that unusual an ingredient.

And while I can't quite go so far as to recommend Haluwa (actually, it's just right for when it's the sort of thing you're in the mood for), I can confirm that they deliver to Hollis Crossing. With Rice n Roll now something else, they seem to be one of only two places that delivers (Gianni's is the other), and of those two the only one that takes credit cards.

My question: is there an Asian market in Nashua that's particularly better than the others for produce? I saw dragonfruit at Hannaford's for $8.99 a pound, and I suspect it'd be cheaper somewhere else -- my friends who spent a year in China loved it, but even they don't think it's worth that price.

I know there's an Asian market of some sort near the Pheasant Lane Mall, that's probably my default destination.

Also planning on going to the Peddler's Daughter for lunch or dinner soon, unless someone's had a horrible experience there and would like to talk me out of it.

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My question: is there an Asian market in Nashua that's particularly better than the others for produce?  I saw dragonfruit at Hannaford's for $8.99 a pound, and I suspect it'd be cheaper somewhere else -- my friends who spent a year in China loved it, but even they don't think it's worth that price.

I know there's an Asian market of some sort near the Pheasant Lane Mall, that's probably my default destination.

Also planning on going to the Peddler's Daughter for lunch or dinner soon, unless someone's had a horrible experience there and would like to talk me out of it.

The food at Peddler's Daughter is OK, no more, and seems a little pricey for Irish pub food. Also, there's no real separation between the bar and the dining areas so the whole place reeks of cigarettes. I find this ironic because smoking is now banned in pubs in Ireland.

Asian markets: there's Merlion on Amherst St near Building 19, and another just off Main St across the street from Peddler's Daughter.

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  • 7 months later...

Just wanted to point out that Lull Farms has garlic scapes right now -- they have a pretty brief season, and grocery stores don't often carry them. (Speaking of grocery stores, Hannaford's reorganization has taken forever, but they seem to be expanding their wares as they go -- they have Tastykakes now! I've never seen Tastykakes in New England before.)

I've become hooked on the flavored milks from Sherman Farm that Lull's carries -- the coffee and chocolate aren't strong enough for my taste, but the blueberry and vanilla are awesome.

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  • 4 weeks later...

And now Lull's has corn! It was just Massachusetts corn until this week. The varieties weren't labeled, so I grabbed a couple ears that looked good.

Peaches are out, too, and blueberries (don't see any wild blueberries yet, and I'm not crazy about the others except in pancakes).

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The Herald briefly mentions that Lowell is a hub of Cambodian food and culture -- anyone have any recommendations? I don't think I've ever had anything but pizza in Lowell, but my family wasn't very adventurous, so I'm still rediscovering the area.

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The Herald briefly mentions that Lowell is a hub of Cambodian food and culture -- anyone have any recommendations?  I don't think I've ever had anything but pizza in Lowell, but my family wasn't very adventurous, so I'm still rediscovering the area.

Try this: http://www.foodventure.com/ It's the website for Southeast Asian Restaurant, which we enjoyed. BTW, I picked up some wild blueberries from the stand in front of Cider Mill General Store on 101 in Amherst today--Lull Farm must have them in now too.

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Try this:  http://www.foodventure.com/  It's the website for Southeast Asian Restaurant, which we enjoyed.  BTW, I picked up some wild blueberries from the stand in front of Cider Mill General Store on 101 in Amherst today--Lull Farm must have them in now too.

Thank you on both counts! I just stopped at Lull's a couple hours ago, in fact, and yep, the wild blueberries are in. I'm going to make a pie as soon as the sun sets so I don't mind warming up the kitchen.

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Ktepi, you should check out Battambang Market on Church Street in Lowell, which is Cambodian-owned and HUGE -- packed to the rafters with every Asian food you can imagine. The meat section alone is jaw-dropping; I don't think there's a part of a pig or cow they don't sell.

Diana Burrell, freelance writer/author

The Renegade Writer's Query Letters That Rock (Marion Street Press, Nov. 2006)

DianaCooks.com

My eGullet blog

The Renegade Writer Blog

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Ktepi, you should check out Battambang Market on Church Street in Lowell, which is Cambodian-owned and HUGE -- packed to the rafters with every Asian food you can imagine. The meat section alone is jaw-dropping; I don't think there's a part of a pig or cow they don't sell.

Oh man. Music to my ears.

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Ktepi, you should check out Battambang Market on Church Street in Lowell, which is Cambodian-owned and HUGE -- packed to the rafters with every Asian food you can imagine. The meat section alone is jaw-dropping; I don't think there's a part of a pig or cow they don't sell.

Oh man. Music to my ears.

There was an article today in the Union Leader about a halal meat market in Manchester. It's called Spice Center and they feature goat brains and lamb testicles, among other things. If you're into offal...

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WOW --

Southeast Asian Restaurant was great -- my friend and I got the buffet, I'm trying to introduce him to more Southeast Asian food. $14 for the two of us, not including tip.

Battambang isn't far away --not sure how far, because we got turned around, accidentally found the original (and apparently now closed) location, and then finally found the sleek and huge new location. Good Lord. I filled a shopping cart for $82. Whole pineapple, top cut off, $1.50. A pork picnic, just the right size to smoke, $4.

And plenty of unusual items: tamarind leaves, kaffir lime leaves, fresh dragonfruit, pig tails, the works.

I'll definitely have to check out Spice Center next, once I use this stuff up.

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There was a recent thread on the New England board of Chowhound about Asian restaurants in Lowell. A place that seems to get consistent raves is called Pho 88.

1270 Westford St, Lowell, MA 01851 (978) 452-7300. Vietnamese.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Lull's has Mirai corn, which is really good and sweet -- I'm told it's a hybrid of sweet corns, so that it's more tender than most super-sweet corn and sweeter than most tender corn. It definitely has more "corny" flavor than most of the sweet corn that's been so popular the last few years.

Less happy with their melon. The muskmelon isn't very flavorful, and the one I bought the other day was so soft I could poke my finger through the rind the next day (I tossed it). I had the same low-flavor complaint about a cantaloupe I bought at the Pepperell Farmer's Market (though I really recommend the raw honey from same).

I did get this little baseball-sized melon at Lull's that's very nice, though -- the sign said Sunshine Melon and described it as being like yellow watermelon, so I think someone moved the signs around; although it was smooth-skinned, it was more like a cantaloupe (with the web of seeds in the middle instead of interspersed like a watermelon's). Very nicely flavored, though -- you just don't get much, a small serving per melon.

(Hannaford's has nice melon selection, but I like to get local stuff whenever I can.)

Oh, and I went to C&S Pizza in Pepperell the other day for the first time in ... well, probably since about 1990. I've had take-out from there since then, but hadn't actually been in person. It's the pizza I grew up with, so I'm completely biased in its favor -- if anything, it's better than I remembered, because spending so many years in the rest of the country got me used to settling for not-so-great pizza.

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Oh oh, and this Shain's of Maine ice cream is awesome. Got that at Lull's too.

I know it seems like I pimp them a lot -- I live at Hollis Crossing and my mother, my bank, and the nearest post office are all in Hollis, so I pass by Lull's a couple times a week.

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Oh oh, and this Shain's of Maine ice cream is awesome.  Got that at Lull's too.

I know it seems like I pimp them a lot -- I live at Hollis Crossing and my mother, my bank, and the nearest post office are all in Hollis, so I pass by Lull's a couple times a week.

I go to the Lull in Milford--same great stuff. The heirloom tomatoes are so good (and relatively cheap--$2.99 a pound) and they always have fresh mozz for caprese.

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The heirlooms really are great -- I haven't found a favorite yet (the German greens are not as good as last year -- weather-dependent, I guess?), but all of the many cherry tomatoes are terrific.

That wasn't an eGulleteer I ran into at the wine shop at Greystone Plaza, was it?

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The heirlooms really are great -- I haven't found a favorite yet (the German greens are not as good as last year -- weather-dependent, I guess?), but all of the many cherry tomatoes are terrific.

That wasn't an eGulleteer I ran into at the wine shop at Greystone Plaza, was it?

I was in there buying some pinot grigio last week...it's a good store. She talked me out of the more expensive bottle because it didn't have the characteristics I asked for--i.e light and dry.

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I really like everything I got at that wine place -- the cheese, and I've already forgotten what it was except I remember it was Spanish and raw-milk (Manchego?), was the best cheese I've had in a long time. I even used half of it in some macaroni and cheese.

Where would I go around here to get truffle butter? It's a silly craving, but it's the kind of small splurge that appeals to me right now, while there's still corn on the cob and fresh radishes and other things butter is good on. D'artagnan makes both black and white truffle butter that's sometimes carried at upscale grocery stores, but I haven't seen it at Hannaford's.

I'm going to Lull's sometime this week to get Concord grapes, but they're pretty steep -- $6 for a container that looks smaller than what the wild blueberries are in. I don't remember them being that much last year. This rain won't have helped, I'm sure.

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