Chili Crisp Galore

This was an exceptionally tasty week! My snacks were on point, we tried a fantastic new restaurant, and the dinners we cooked were total successes. Highlights include…

Brunch at Xilonen, a new vegetarian Mexican spot in Greenpoint. We were blown away by the scrambled egg tostada with salsa mache, queso, and a crispy blue corn tortilla.

Heirloom corn tamal, stuffed with sweet potato al pastor, and topped with smoked crema and poblano rajas.

Masa pancakes with maple and butter.

Chocolate cherry cold brew.

Dalgona iced coffee with black sesame vanilla bean milk.

An ideal snack array – sumo mandarin, salted peanuts, and lava cake kisses.

My parents sent us a box of St. Patrick’s Day goodies, including homemade clover sugar cookies.

Peanut butter chocolate chip Perfect Bar + boba milk tea mochi.

Boba-studded popsicles are currently my favorite snack category.

10/10 leftovers from The Meat Hook. The french onion dip was the best I’ve ever had.

Farro / glazed, baked tofu / sautéed bok choy and green onion / chili crisp / fried shallots (which we made in the microwave!!).

Soba noodles / peanut sauce (loosely based on this one) / cabbage / zucchini / ground turkey / chili crisp and smashed peanuts.

Oven-baked crispy chicken tenders (loosely inspired by this recipe) with brown sugar chili crisp sauce + roasted broccoli with fried shallots. I went back for thirds of that chicken!

All Highs

We had a great time this weekend visiting some of our favorite spots and discovering some new favorites! Highlights include…

High Low Beverage Company. Vietnamese-influenced with a gorgeous backyard. Cherry and lime leaf jelly doughnut.

Tiki New Fashioned – banana-infused Four Roses bourbon, Plantation pineapple dark rum, pandan syrup, tiki bitters / HiLo Hello – Thai chili-infused mezcal with lime, passionfruit, and cane syrup.

Papaya salad with sambal beef jerky, cabbage, herbs, peanuts, fried shallots, fresno chili, and plum vinaigrette.

Double Chicken, Please. Draft cocktails, massive sandwiches, and clever desserts! #2 – Teeling small batch whiskey, brown butter, black raisin, honey, verjus (warm) / #9 Barcardi Cuatro rum, St. Germain, verjus, amontilado sherry, banana, walnut.

Five spice and plum salt sweet potato chips.

Hen of the woods mushroom sandwich with seaweed and bamboo / fried chicken sandwich with shrimp, brioche, and salted duck yolk sauce.

Shot – mezcal with plum and shiso / ice ice weenie – chocolate ice cream on a potato bun with salted duck egg sauce, hot honey, and whiskey cream.

We found fresh soursop juice at the Dominican place in Essex Market.

All the beers (truly, almost all of the beers) at Evil Twin. My three favorites were the ET Stay Home 6 Royal Treatment – sour ale with peaches, papaya, pineapple, passion fruit, coconut, marshmallow, vanilla, and cacao / This Deli Needs a Bigger Double Kiwi Lime Coconut Muffin Lassi Gose / Luxurious Luxury – imperial Berliner gose with grapefruit, tart raspberry candy, coconut, and marshmallow.

We also finally checked out (and loved!) Bridge and Tunnel Brewery just down the street. Everything we tried was great but the standout was the F**k the Virus coconut New England IPA.

Super Moon Bakehouse. Epic baked goods. I loved this cookie butter, dulce de leche crunch cookie with my whole heart.

I also brought home a square of sourdough focaccia and made an insane turkey and cheddar sandwich.

I couldn’t contain myself but this terrible picture is to serve as a placeholder to remind Adam and I that we want takeout from The Meat Hook again immediately. We had several sandwiches and the best french onion dip I’ve ever tasted.

Destination Charcuterie

Adam and I are both off this Saturday and Sunday, so obviously it’s going to be the best! weekend! ever! Highlights from the week include…

Crispy waffles from Costa Nova. Mine was stuffed with peanut butter, marshmallows, and banana.

Grimm’s Destination Neon double IPA was an absolute delight.

Black sesame ice cream with all the toppings.

Baked cabbage and shrimp with lemon, pepper, and fresh dill (similar to this recipe).

Egg casserole with vegan chorizo, kale, and sharp cheddar (similar to this recipe).

Cheese plate night! Roasted yellow cauliflower / ruby chocolate covered cherries / salted dark chocolate almonds / smoked beef salami / truffle cheese aged in ashes / triple cream blue cheese.

Show Me Potato Salad

Five highlights from the past seven days –

{1} A Cherr-Bear smoothie! Yes, I think I’m very clever. A remake of the smoothie I adored for Valentine’s – frozen dark sweet cherries, plain Greek yogurt, and chocolate milk.

{2} A fruit and nut yogurt bowl. Vanilla bean skyr topped with (frozen, reheated) blueberries, halvah, yellow raisins, and nut and seed trail mix.

{3} Whole Foods buffalo sauce soy nuggets and baby carrots, served with an array of dipping sauces.

{4} We made an epically good warm potato salad. Roasted potatoes and celery, hard-boiled eggs, cornichons, dill, mayonnaise, and whole-grain mustard. Plus honey maple smoked salmon.

{5} I made our tastiest no-churn ice cream to date!

Black sesame with layers of fudge sauce and whole-wheat matzoh toffee.

Everything But

Adam and I had a ton of time together this week, which is just the best. We both had time off in the day on Monday and Wednesday and we liked our date so much on Monday – breakfast at Winner, a walk through Prospect Park, and lunch at Ix Restaurant – that we did the exact same things in reverse on Wednesday!

Prospect Park was an iced-over death trap but it was my absolute favorite activity of the week because we got to see swans.

Highlights from the week include…

Lots of fun in coffee. I enjoyed these new Cokes with coffee exactly as much as I thought I would.

This Trader Joe’s instant cold brew is weak on it’s own but it can total save a not-great cup of coffee.

Coffee-flavored Nutrament with a canned Stumptown.

Fancy lattes from Brooklyn Perk, mine was made with rose.

Winner’s sourdough croissant was a total win.

Meal 1 at Ix. Corn thickened Champurrado hot chocolate.

I had the kimchi soup with chicken, noodles, and poached eggs.

Meal 2 at Ix. Hot chocolate with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Chips with bean dip and crazy-good housemade hot sauce.

Corn with cotija cheese, sour cream, cilantro, and chile.

Caldo Tlalpeno Rojo – soup with chicken, tomato, garlic, onion, peas, chickpeas, corn, achiote, chipotle, Oaxaca cheese, and tortilla strips.

Ciao, Gloria blew our minds with their lemoncello pistachio bars. Also we had an unphotographed housemade Oreo that was the best cookie I’ve ever eaten.

Trader Joe’s smoked salmon dip is a household favorite.

Leftover Thai green beans with soft-scrambled eggs, vegetarian pork floss, and chili oil.

Homemade taco bowls. Brown basmati rice / ground turkey / sharp cheddar / sautéed orange and yellow bell pepper and onion.

Sheet-pan shrimp fried rice.

Loxchos(!!) with roasted brussel sprouts. Trader Joe’s everything bagel seasoning chips with swiss and Gruyere, hot-smoked salmon, and green onion.

Take-out dinner from Winner, plus roasted zucchini. We split a smoked chicken salad sandwich and a grilled cheese with cheddar, provolone, and romesco sauce on sourdough.

Plus a malted flour chocolate chip cookie.

Imperial Marshmallow

Valentine’s Day weekend highlights…

Adam surprised me with a tres leches old fashioned doughnut from Comfortland, i.e., the perfect gift!

We had some crazy good beers. Prairie Artisan Ales Millennial Mansion – imperial sour ale with orange peel, lemon peel, lime, blueberry, cherry, and marshmallow (11/10). Interboro Swoon Units – imperial gose with blackberry, blueberry, lemon, marshmallow, and vanilla salt (9/10).

We got a ton of Chinese take-out. Chicken fried rice, crispy noodles with shredded chicken, garlic baby bok choy, stir-fried string beans, and taro puffs. Plus we had housemade soy milk!

I made a ridiculous take on okonomiyaki with turkey pepperoni and sharp cheddar. The million toppings make it – Kewpie, Sriracha, furikake, and Nowon’s chili oil.

Chocolate-Covered Cherry

Highlights from the week included…

I was off on Wednesday (I work the weekend again) and I took myself into the city for Dough Doughnuts. This key lime pie doughnut – enrobed in toasted marshmallow!! – was 100% worth braving the cold.

We’ve been in a pandemic for more than a year now and Winter 2021 already feels too long so I am looking to maximize the joy in my life wherever I can; hence, I declared chocolate-covered cherry the official theme flavor of Valentine’s week and I have been eating the combo left and right!

Chocolate cherry coffee = Trader Joe’s cold brew, luxardo cherries, chocolate milk.

See also – vanilla milk and luxardo juice (plus a bit of red food coloring!) plus espresso blended with hot chocolate mix.

This chocolate cherry smoothie was hands-down the best smoothie I’ve ever made/consumed. TJ’s frozen sweet dark cherries, luxardo cherries, plain Greek yogurt, chocolate milk.

Ruby cacao covered cherries + strawberry and hibiscus chocolate.

Related note – I don’t even like Hershey’s Kisses but these lava cake ones are currently one of my top five favorite products.

10/10 ridiculously amazing cherry truffle ice cream.

All of our dinners this week were tasty and wonderful (and a snap to prepare!).

Meatball subs with roasted green beans. Turkey meatballs – stuffed with garlic, fish sauce, and urfa chili peppers – tossed in marinara sauce on a toasted hoagie roll with mozzarella. Our sandwiches were comically large but neither of us could stop from finishing them because they were so yummy!

Wild mushroom chicken sausages – topped with caramelized onion and yellow mustard / roasted broccoli / Lays chili chips.

Pizza casserole. I made a crust layer out of riced cauliflower (with spices, eggs, and cheese), topped with mozzarella, marinara sauce and caramelized onions, chicken sausage, and turkey pepperoni.

Leftover Madeover

I did not watch any Super Bowl (instead I started watching Woke!) but I did eat a giant plate of cheese fries! Other highlights from this weekend included…

Salted Caramel Perfect Bar with an iced coffee.

Iced Phin coffee with maple vanilla salted cold foam.

Ice cream for a snow day. Yes, I ate the pretzel swirl out of the entire pint in less than 5 minutes.

Leftover Thai noodles and chicken stir-fried with eggs and extra veggies (Trader Joe’s frozen stir-fry mix) and topped with Nowon chili oil.

Leftover Thai green beans with soft-scrambled eggs, veggie floss, furikake, and chili oil. <– this was the best thing I’ve eaten all month

Take Me Out

It was a take-out heavy week and subsequently we ate some really amazing things! Highlights from the week included…

787 Coffee with sweetened condensed milk.

We retried the cola coffee with great success – espresso, Coke, and scm. Yes, I am furiously looking to get my hands on the newly released cans of Coke with coffee.

One of Adam’s friends delivered us amazing nutella, sea salt caramel brownies.

I obviously crumbled one into plain skyr with some berries and cinnamon.

Chicken nuggets with frozen broccoli wok-sauteed with honey mustard and pickled onions.

Plus a broccoli beer! Other Half double dry hopped IPA.

We ordered a ton of Thai take-out. This was basil fried rice, cashew chicken, and string beans.

Plus the hazy milkshake IPA that Sixpoint clearly brewed just for me!

We checked out Roberta’s new classic burger joint. <– Best! Fries!! Ever!!!

And obviously brought home pizza too. Romaine salad with garlic bread crumbs, dill, mint, and pecorino // Lil’ Stinker – tomato, mozzarella, parmigiano, pecorino, double garlic, onion, pepperoncini // Cheesus Christ – mozzarella, taleggio, parmigiano, black pepper, and cream.

Plus a cup of roasted banana pudding with dulce de leche and espresso wafers.

Winner Winner

The highlights from this last weekend were all chicken dinners.

Homemade curried chicken salad with smoked almonds, yellow raisins, and celery with baby yellow tomatoes. This meal was as tasty as it was orange.

Venezuelan take-out from White Maize. I got a sweet corn pancake stuffed with cheese and shredded chicken.

And we got a Papelon (raw sugar limeade) to make amaretto sours out of.

Plus we picked up ice cream from Malia while we waited for our food – spiced peanut crunch and rose with roasted cinnamon almonds.

The Whole Food’s buffalo chicken pizza is the best pizza (meal??) in New York City.