Now whilst our family (my husband’s uncle) live in Phoenix, as it is HOT there at the moment, we had decided that we would acclimatise to the heat by visiting some friends in their cabin in Prescott. Now this turned out to be a very good idea, particularly as the flight over was not a pleasant experience! After having to wait two and a half hours on the Tarmac at Heathrow (which isn’t so cold itself!) we finally completed the 10.5 hour flight.
Except that’s not what happened.
After a half hour hold over Alberquerque, we then were told that there was a massive dust storm over Phoenix so we could not land. Fair enough – we have seen a video of the storm to know that we also did not want to land there. However, due to a lack of fuel we had to divert to Las Vegas, at which point we had to wait for another two hours, in scorching heat with no air conditioning or water. We finally got into Phoenix 7 hours after the expected time, having been up for over twenty four hours with only about an hours sleep. Now some of you may be fine, me – I need my 8 hours!
But anyway, the next day we woke up and drove to Prescott, stopping first in the town centre which seemed to be cowboy Central, from the shooting range to the people in traditional dress wandering the streets.
For lunch we stopped at the lovely Raven Cafe, an organic cafe in the centre of the town. Knowing about the provenance of food is a brilliant aspect of the new foodie scene in my opinion, and this restaurant included a big blackboard telling you exactly where all the produce has come from – a big plus point! The food was its major selling point though (as it should be). I chose the special of Cajun Fish Tacos, along with sweet potato fries and an iced chai.
Sweet Potato Fries
The tacos were truly delicious. I tried to eat them in the traditional way which resulted in a lot of mess, but really it was worth it. There were big chunks of subtly flavoured fish, beautifully moist topped with crispy cabbage and a dill yoghurt which added a light but creamy texture to the whole dish. The sweet potato fries were everything they should be – thin, crispy and incredibly more-ish, whilst the iced chai provided a wonderful cinnamon-y accompaniment to the whole meal. Definitely a hit for me, and one to look out for!
For supper we had a barbecue on the deck of the cabin we were staying in, which was just perfection. Now I did not realise that Arizona had forests, but the whole landscape was picture perfect, so peaceful and a wonderful place to escape to. After enjoying our burgers, corn, homemade kale chips and potato salad, we planned to enjoy the next great American Classic – the s’more! However, this got moved inside after we started getting attacked by bugs. Pathetic I know, but when a 2 inch flying beatle starts to attack you, you want to go somewhere where it isn’t! As a result the S’mores and other associated goodies were moved inside. No pictures I’m afraid – I have great admiration for the willpower of anyone who is presented with a hot s’more and waits to take a picture…
The next day, we went for brunch at the Iron Springs Cafe, just down the road from the cabins. Whenever I go to the states, I always find portion sizes hard to gauge, as they are often so much bigger that we are accustomed to, and so we try to sample as many things but without wastage – when the food’s as good as it is, I don’t want to leave any of it on my plate! So between us, Max and I decided on a small gumbo and a plate of Pork Green Chile and associated sides. Both were delicious – the gumbo hot and spicy and filled with chicken and andouille sausage, whilst the pork was falling apart and so flavoursome! I particularly enjoyed the black beans as a side dish, one thing I always miss when I’m in England! Add to that a Mexican iced chocolate, spiked with cinnamon and I was happy!
Gumbo with Chicken and Andouille Sausage
Pork Green Chile with rice and black beans
Mexican Iced Chocolate
Well, that’s about it for the first two days. I leave you with the results of our blind tasting of Malteasters and Malt Balls – Malt balls have more chocolate but everyone (except Max and I) seem to prefer them! However, that doesn’t stop me eating them every time I near the candy bar that cousin Chloe created!
Happy summer all!