My weekend in Seattle was, excuse my French, a massive eating orgy. With my host-friend who knows a ton about food and the best local haunts, we crammed in as many awesome places as we could, with just enough travel and digestion time in between. Our line-up included Southern food, Cuban sandwiches, homemade icecream, Spanish tapas, and tons of coffee and tea in the middle (which I’ve dedicated an entire post to here)…oh, and did I mention that we even cooked a four-course flatbread meal on Sunday? It was so excessively awesome that I’m going to have to break it all out across multiple posts. So here’s to a weekend of gluttony, Friday night through Sunday evening…
Friday night at The Kingfish Cafe
Nothing like a bit of Southern hospitality when you’re in the mood for comfort food, and tons of it. Southerners are not shy about portion sizes, and super generous with their use of butter, cheese, frying oils…and of course, love. When there’s fried chicken in the house, there’s gotta be love.
(sorry for the lack of photos – I decided to give my friend and myself a break from the many photographs that I’d been snipping away since I’d landed in Seattle. But don’t despair, all the remaining posts will be back with graphical vengeance!)
We started off with one of my all-time favorites: crab and catfish cakes. I slunk back in my chair with a deep, contented sigh – Kingfish’s take on this Southern classic was blissfully perfect, everything, from the thickness of the breading to the homemade tartar sauce to the crab and catfish seasoning. The stuffing on the inside was so flavorful and moist that we could see buttery juices ooze out from the holes where we’d poked our forks into the crisp outer layer of fried breading.
Our entree Part 1 was a massive plate of buttermilk fried chicken, another deep-fried creation that Kingfish had mastered to its crunchiest and juiciest core. The stars on the plate though were the sides: collard greens that tasted like they had been braised in some sort of sweet broth, and a creamy heap of potato salad with an interesting tinge of honey or maple syrup. And because we couldn’t entertain the Mac and Cheese as a main, we ordered a side portion of it to accompany our other two sides with our fried chicken (never heard of sides for your sides?). For context, a side by Southern standards = a main-course sized portion for most people…and an entire day’s worth of food for the French. Unfortunately, this was the place where Kingfish slipped up a bit – the cheese was a bit dry and mealy, lacking the right amounts of creaminess, gooeiness, and top-layer breaded crunch that every great mac and cheese should have. I’m glad we didn’t order it as a main.
Entree Part 2 was a hearty slow-cooked seafood gumbo with cornbread. Just loved the heady spice that went into this dish, with veggies and baby prawns that had soaked up the heat and gravy all the way through.
And then finally, we ordered a portion of the only dessert they had left in the house, and which I’d looked at with greedy eyes as it was being taken to other tables. An Everest-sized portion of strawberry shortcake, with layers of whipped cream, dense slices of cake, and chunky strawberry sauce, all drowning together in rich, creamy, cakey, sweet, fruity, and every-other-sensation-that-would-induce-a-late-night-shortcake-craving unison. (We actually took leftovers home and ate the cake again at midnight. And I woke up the next morning to find myself craving it again. I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I was in love. With a pile of cake, cream, and strawberries.)
Luckily I found another blogger who had photographed Kingfish Cafe’s strawberry shortcake – http://sweettoothinseattle.com/2009/09/16/kingfish-cafe/
Dessert late into the night, but I was still hungry when I woke up the next morning! Read on about Saturday eats on my next post…
Phone: +1 (206) 320 8757
602 19th Avenue East, Seattle, WA 98112