Lunchtime With Tillie: Brooklyn Flea

Hey everyone, it’s Team LWT back with another installment of Lunchtime With Tillie. Sorry we missed you last week: Yours truly was a little slack on getting Baby T out of the house to eat. (Don’t worry; we had food in the house for her!) But since we didn’t get out and about, we decided to make up for that with a trip that brought multiple food places together under one roof, the Brooklyn Flea at 1 Hanson Place. I’ve been trying to arrange a trip there for the family for weeks now, but I usually do some freelance work on Saturdays a million miles away in Westchester County and by the time I have to start my trip by plane, train and automobile to get to the job, Tillie’s just waking up from her nap. But I was off this past Saturday, and my flea market mission was not to be denied!

So as soon as T woke up from her midmorning nap, I loaded her up in her stroller to go there, where Tillie’s mom was waiting for us. Tillie’s mom had been out all morning looking at wedding dresses (she’s getting married to a really awesome dude, I hear) and beat us to the place. We talked on my way there and she volunteered to hop in the line where they were serving pupusas. Since I had been saying for months—since the outdoor Flea days—that I wanted to try a pupusa, this was greatly appreciated.

After finally arriving there, we were all set to head downstairs, but there was a slight snag. As I mentioned a few sentences ago, I threw Tillie in the stroller to take her to the Flea. We have an Ergo carrier, but I had only worn it once at that point and I had NO idea how to put it on by myself in backpack mode: Parents out there, I’m sure you understand. Anyway, back to the snag; there was no elevator to get down to the food. No worries as I just carried her down, but it was a lot of stairs to deal with and sometimes it could be said I might have a wee bit of a lazy side.

We got down there and quickly found Tillie’s mom standing in line. Tillie was kind of lethargic on our way down to the Flea, but perked up some when she saw mommy! I un-strollered her and off she went into TM’s waiting arms, joining her to get the much-awaited pupusas.

But …

There were so many other options around and the pupusas didn’t look like all they were cracked up to be, so I decided to make the rounds. I know, so close, yet so far away. Right next to the Red Hook vendors was The Good Fork stand, which had pork and vegetable dumplings as well as gumbo. I thought dumplings would make a good food choice for Tillie, even though she had pupusas in her immediate future. But I figured why not just let her have a taste of everything; I’ll get some dumplings, too. And since I was on this Brooklyn Flea-food-melange kick …

Why not get a grilled cheese sandwich at Milk Truck? Tillie has a grilled cheese sandwich almost every morning, but not like these, with the aged gruyere and crispy bread. If she likes my little cheddar sandwiches I make for her on my Foreman Grill, she’ll love these! So I went over to place the order for a grilled cheese classic, and since it takes a few minutes for those to be prepared, I sauntered back to Good Fork and got some pork dumplings. As soon as they were done, I made my way back to Milk Truck just in time to pick up that cheesy goodness for the fam. I went out to join T and TM, who were sitting on the floor next to Sigmund’s Pretzel Stand. Tillie’s mom had the pupusas, I had the grilled cheese sandwich and dumplings, and Tillie?

She had other plans.

Remember when I said she was kind of lethargic on the way down? Well, she snapped back to her usual playful personality and really had no interest in eating. She wanted to spend most of her time wandering a few feet away from us then coming back. I think she was entertained by seeing all the people in one place, and she also had fun dancing to the music playing.

In between her dancing and running, she did grab a bite of dumpling and pupusa, but had nothing to do with the grilled cheese. I guess my sandwiches are her favorite after all! But, if I’m to be honest about it, Milk Truck has me beat hands-down.

After Tillie’s mom and I finished eating, we packed up the leftover pupusas for Tillie (which proved to be a good move as she ate them while we were walking around later on). We got her back in the stroller then made our way out of the basement, back to street level and headed out—all of us satisfied with the trip.

If you haven’t been to the Flea yet, which I would be shocked about, then you should go soon, for sure. I think there’s something to eat for everyone at good prices. I would say, though, if you’re bringing the kid, take the carrier because it can get pretty tight there. I know we’ll be back soon, this time with Tillie ready to eat because we still have to try the Connecticut lobster roll and fish tacos and spinach pie and Asia Dogs and …