23 March 2012
Minneapolis: Turtle Bread
3421 W 44th St
Minneapolis, MN 55410
Maybe not everyone knows Turtle Bread for its soup. It's just the thing when I don't feel like cooking! We live within walking distance, so it's our old standby.
Turtle Bread is known by un-soupy people for its, well. Bread! Have you seen Ratatouille? You know the scene where Colette is showing Linguini how to tell if bread is really good? And she says it's not the appearance or the smell, but the SOUND. That is what the bread here is like. You squeeze it, it'll crackle like it's Paris.
I love bread as much as the next person, but I can't make a meal out of it. That's why I go here for the soup. They had my favorite when Matt and I went - Garbanzo Spinach Soup.
Tropical Naked Juice, because I love me some smoothie. Pureed veggies in the soup, pureed fruits in the bottle. I am set.
This soup is super creamy and comforting. It's full-bodied and fresh-tasting. I love it. Sometimes I come here, see they don't have Spinach Garbanzo, and then leave. Other times, I suck it up and order something else. I'm never disappointed.
Perhaps you're familiar with the way Turtle Bread works: they only serve the full menu of sandwiches, salads, breakfast foods and other yummy gems until 2:00pm, at which point they switch over to deli-style. If you come here for dinner like we do, you can grab fancy cheese from the fancy case, a baked good from the bakery case, pre-made sandwiches from the sandwich... case, and salad and soup from the cashiers. Usually they have at least one vegan soup, and often 2 or 3. It's all delicious.
Our friend Sarah works here, so she asked us if we were casing the place when she saw Matt getting fancy with his camera and the bread. When I explained what we were up to she said eight words that changed my life forever: "Did you know we have vegan cake now?"
I told my stomach we had incoming, and Sarah mentioned that not only is this cake vegan, it's also the best cake they have. Uh. Hold on a sec. This is Turtle Bread, renowned for its cakes and pies and things. And an employee and trusted friend is telling us they've finally created a vegan baked good and it's BETTER than everything they had made in the past?
Next thing I knew, Matt and I were in vanilla heaven. This slice had so much authentic vanilla bean flavor it could have been ice cream. It had a hearty, moist, dense bite to it. Little structurally unsound, but we were willing to overlook the design flaw. The flavor certainly made up for it. It was so rich, I was glad to share - I couldn't have eaten that whole thing on my own.
Things can be a tich expensive here in the hoity-toity land of fancy cheeses and fresh olives. But a relatively cheap cup of soup with a slice of bread will fill you right up. And when you can't resist that vegan cake? You can spare $4.