Friday, February 23, 2007
Tuesdays with Market
Soul Food Stop- We can now check off another food served at the Market that falls, sadly, below the mark. Soul Food Stop, that cute little counter next door to the mini donut people, is lacking in, well- soul. We sampled the pulled pork sandwich and the black-eyed peas plate. All too often these days, since barbecue has become the regional American flavor du jour, people substitute slow-cooked shredded pork for what it is in the South: slow-cooked, shredded, SMOKED pork. There is a monumental difference between the two, folks. Pork shoulder is a tough cut of meat that requires special attention to become tender. Normally this means a braise or stew, both cooking methods that employ moist heat. But there is a dry-cooking technique, smoking, that accomplishes the same goal through the sustained exposure of the meat to chemical compounds found in smoke. A bi-product of this is a wonderful, singular flavor. At this place they merely braise pork shoulder and slather it with an oversweet sauce from a jar. Big no-no. Very disappointing. The black-eyed peas were merely okay. Does having a "soul food" restaurant add color and personality to Pike Place Market? Probably a little. But not as much as if they were more dedicated to the traditions of genuine soul food.