Friday, March 19, 2010

San Francisco Weekend Getaway - Fresno County Blossom & Fruit Trail

Last weekend, we explored the Fresno area's Blossom Trail, which showcases flowering orchards of plum, apricot, almond, apple, orange, lemon, peach, nectarine and other fruit trees. What a beautiful sight! We ended up in Orange Cove, with sweet oranges already dripping from the trees, and extended our day trip by hiking in Sequoia National Park after a night's stay at historic Wicky Up Ranch in Woodlake.

This trip makes a lovely weekend getaway from San Francisco even when the blossoms wane because this becomes the Fruit Trail from May to September. Besides the blossoms and fruit, you can have adventures with wine tasting, wildflowers, photography, touring Sequoia National Park (Grant Grove, King's Canyon), and discovering interesting foods such as:

Gourmet Atomic Frog Balls
These are spicy pickled brussels sprouts by Black Sheep Gourmet Foods
I found them at Appellation: California (but didn't taste them).
frog balls - pickled brussel sprouts

French Burnt Peanuts
Found at Simonian Farms, this old time treat is simply candy-coated
peanuts with coloring. They were even sold in gumball machines
once upon a time. ( I didn't taste these.)
french burnt peanuts from Simonian farms

Best Omelet!
Found at Wicky Up Bed and Breakfast in Woodlake.
Jack Pizura, co-proprietor and breakfast chef, shared his recipe and
secrets for his sublimely delicate omelettes (below).
This B&B also serves orange chocolate chip cookies
and fresh orange juice, made with oranges from their own 110 yr old trees.
 bed and breakfast sequoia national park orange cove Jack Pizura - photograph by Monica Pizura

The Amazingly Delicate Wicky Up Bed and Breakfast Omelet
by Jack Pizura

  • 1-2 Eggs per omelette
  • 1 Tablespoon of Half & Half per egg
  • Seasoned Salt
  • Salted Butter
  • Olive oil
  • Optional: pre-cooked stuffing (such as mushrooms and spinach)
  • Optional: grated cheese (such as mozzarella)


Hand mix the eggs and cream until fully blended with a coiled spring whisk (about 1 minute). Add two pinches of seasoned salt to the mixture. Start with a medium-to-high heat in an 8" non-stick frying pan (one omelet per pan) and add 1 teaspoon of salted butter and olive oil to cover the surface of pan. Immediately after adding the egg mixture, top it with your pre-cooked stuffing as well as any grated cheese. Cook until lightly browned on the bottom,  rolling back edges and shifting uncooked portions to sides. Never allow it to stick to the pan. Slide the omelet onto a plate and fold over (to hide the stuffing).

The Secrets:
  • Use a coiled spring whisk to mix the eggs and cream
  • Use salted butter because unsalted cooks differently
  • Also use olive oil to ensure the edges don't stick to the pan
  • Make sure the omelet keeps sliding as you shake the pan
  • Do not overcook the eggs because they'll become rubbery (moisture is forced out)
  • Use brown or organic eggs for a deeper yellow yolk
If you want to see the trail from home, check out this video: California's Gold - Blossom Trail . If you're ready to head out there, lucky you! I recommend starting the blossom trail at Simonian Farms (where you can pick up a free trail map). From there, you can drive the trail by map or by the road signs (however, we found 1-2 signs missing from critical turns).

Upcoming Festival: Orange Cove is holding its annual Orange Blossom Festival (aka Orange Harvest Festival), complete with an Orange Blossom Queen and a parade, on April 10, 2010. (Call the Orange Cove Chamber of Commerce for details: 559.626.5179)

1 comment:

  1. What fun! Jack looks great in his cooking frock. The Wicky Up has been my first choice for years. Such beautiful hosts, beautiful setting and a gateway to the most beautiful scenery in the Sierras.

    John Lloyd



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