Souvenir Tastes

Highlights from this week include…

We were missing vacation and immediately ate all of our Hawaiian goodies.

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Taro macadamia shortbread / passion fruit gummies / li hing gummy pineapples.

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Also Hawaiian-inspired goodies, dried baby pineapple and tropical punch kombucha.

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We went to brunch at Comfortland and loved it x10,000.  The space was super cute and I wanted everything on the menu!

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We had a doughnut milk latte!  Plus a nutella creme brulee doughnut.  And a giant bbq fried chicken biscuit that I got too excited to photograph.

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Dinners were awesome thanks to some great H-Mart finds – jumbo puff tofu and Korean rice cakes.

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Stir-fry with tofu, baby bok choy, mushroom, green onion, and cherry tomato.  Sauce = soy sauce, fish sauce, rice vinegar, sriracha, sugar.

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Stir-fry with chicken, egg, rice cake, cabbage, and onion.  Sauce = gojuchang, soy sauce, rice vinegar, garlic, ginger, lime, canola oil, brown sugar.

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Waffley Glad

We had a really amazing time in Hawaii (several posts are coming soon!) but I am awfully glad to be back home with Webster!

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I didn’t make it the grocery until Sunday afternoon but we still managed to eat some yummy things this weekend.  Highlights include…

My new favorite yogurt bowl = Trader Joe’s plain Skyr yogurt with maple syrup, blueberries, banana, and blistered peanuts.

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Extra spicy, extra veggies hand-pulled noodles from our mall’s fancy food court.

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perfect snack.

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Costa Nova made me a fantastic quad iced latte!  Plus a waffle with marshmallow and cookie butter!

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We thought this frozen kunefe from Trader Joe’s was fantastic.  Highly recommend buying if you spot it.

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Waffle flavored chicken bites with baby carrots and maple sriracha aioli.

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My new favorite veggies bowl = a base of cauliflower rice with soft scrambled eggs, sauteed baby tomatoes, and avocado (topped with Cholula).

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The night before we left for Hawaii we celebrated our anniversary at Bowery Meat Company and the night we returned we feasted on leftover duck lasagna.

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Carbo-Loading For The Work-Week

Three words to sum up this weekend’s eats – all the carbs.  Fourth word – yum!

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It was a very good weekend, in spite of the city’s first snow.  We drove (carefully!) into Brooklyn both days for tasty brunches, I cooked two new dishes, we cackled loudly at the Garfunkel and Oates special, and I polished off a bunch of freelance work.

Iced latte from Milk Bar.

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Starbucks smoked butterscotch latte.  I ordered this with four shots of espresso (normal x2) and two pumps of syrup (normal/2) and it was still too sweet.

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Espresso and chocolate milk.

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Best brunch of the new year at Sunday in Brooklyn.

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I drank a Sundae Coffee – cold brewed coffee, aged rum, allspice dram, and vanilla cream – and a Smoked Oak Soda, aka the best thing I’ve ever tasted.  It was like a glass of toasted marshmallow!!!

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We started with a pecan sticky bun and a maple cheddar biscuit.  It’s possible we got excited and basically ordered the whole damn menu. 

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I uncharacteristically ordered pancakes… malted pancakes with hazelnut maple praline and brown butter.

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Plus we spit home fries and I stole several bites of Adam’s smoked salmon and pastrami cod.  We took some food home, obviously, and the dog was over the moon for that salmon.  <– I agree, best lox I’ve had yet.

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Work lunch yogurt bowl.  Vanilla bean with TJ’s almond butter granola and chocolate tahini, plus a Piñata apple.

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Pizza lunch at Emmy Squared.  We had waffle fries with bonito flakes.

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The Marn Blanc — white pizza with mozzarella, ricotta, pecorino, and caramelized onion – was good but intense; I’d probably get something with red sauce to cut through the fat next time.

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Snack time, tortilla chips and peanut butter cups.

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Dulce de leche iced chocolate from Cacao Market.

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Turkey salad for a simple dinner, with mayo, ground mustard, celery, sweet and spicy pecans, and cilantro.  Plus baby carrots and buttered sourdough toast.

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Nacho night.  Tortilla chips with sharp cheddar, chunky salsa, and black beans.  Plus more baby carrots on the side.

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Sunday I spent some time chopping in the kitchen and tried two new recipes.  I did a very loose interpretation of Mapo Tofu with ground turkey and gojuchang served on brown rice.

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Next to a bok choy salad.  I borrowed this sauce, and tossed it with chopped bok choy, red bell pepper, celery, green onions, and Valencia peanuts.  It was delicious!  This was our first time eating the bok choy raw and we loved it.

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I’d say my glycogen stores are fully replenished.  Have a fantastic week!

Dinner Bowl

Do you have a preference for tableware and/or flatware?  Whenever possible, I eat out of a bowl, preferably with chopsticks.  Probably because it’s easier to chase every last bite when the food can’t roll off of the plate!  All of my dinners this week were delicious and I think it’s not a coincidence that they were all served in bowls.

breakfast

This was a weird week for me, I ate breakfast – as in chewable breakfast, not just tons of milk in my coffee – almost every day.

Sonja apple.

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String cheese and my last mango coconut almond thin.  {p.s. Kate won the giveaway!}

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String cheese and a KIND Salted Caramel Popped Bar.  <– very tasty and packs 2 grams of fiber and 3 grams of protein for 140 calories thanks to the blend of whole grains.

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Don’t get me wrong, there was coffee too!  This one was TJ’s cold-brew with skim milk and toasted marshmallow syrup.

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And this monster was a Starbucks reward freebie that I took full advantage of – venti skim iced latte with extra espresso.

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lunch

Yogurt bowls for the win.  Adam and I are both head over heels for the KIND granola.

Local vanilla bean Greek yogurt with KIND maple, chia, quinoa granola and yellow nectarine, black plum, and blueberries.

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Plain Fage Greek yogurt with KIND granola and red plum and yellow nectarine.  Plus a serving of Lindt Pink Explosion on the side.

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Honey Fage with blueberries and TJ’s bran flakes.

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And Tuesday I had catered lunch thanks to a malnutrition policy education that I attended.  Dessert was chocolate-covered marzipan that a sweet coworker snuck to me.

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snack

A picture’s worth a thousand words.  Apparently I was all about the freeze-dried produce.

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dinner

Another reason we both like bowl-style meals is that it’s nice to have our grain/protein/veggie components layered together rather than served in separate piles on a plate.  I like to get a little bit of each flavor in every bite.

Honey-chipotle chicken Chipotle style bowls.

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This week’s dinners had a lot of components so I’m going to break them down bullet-point-style.

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  • sautéed local Satur Farms energy greens – aka a kale, spinach, etc mix
  • sautéed onions and green peppers with cilantro and lime
  • TJ’s Cuban-style black beans
  • pan-fried chicken breasts that were marinated overnight in chipotles in adobo, honey, evoo, lime juice, sherry, minced garlic, smoked paprika, and salt and pepper
  • avocado
  • shredded cheese / low-fat sour cream / cilantro

We were out of the onion and pepper mix for day 2’s leftovers so instead I served all of the other components on top of big bowls of kale and broccoli sautéed with garlic and lime.  Still good!  We decided that my version was almost as good as Chipotle.

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Our rice bowls were a more Asian-inspired.  They would have been better with a runny egg on top but I was pleased with how incredibly juicy the chicken came out.

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  • brown jasmine rice
  • browned mushrooms
  • roasted broccoli
  • baked chicken that was marinated overnight in soy sauce, rice vinegar, fish sauce, Sriracha, canola oil, lime juice, sugar, and minced ginger
  • bok choy, celery, green onion, and cilantro sautéed with a bit of the sauce from the chicken

Even on my night out I ate dinner in a bowl.  I met friends at Hanoi and ordered the Veggie Spring Roll Bun – room temperature vermicelli, lettuce, cucumber, scallion oil, shallot, peanut, fresh herb, and nuoc cham sauce.

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Would you have guessed that there would literally be a chopped up spring roll on top of the dish?  We were surprised, but agreed that it was darn tasty.  The best part of the meal was dessert though.  Maple soft-serve from Corner of Vermont.

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We ate our ice cream on a leisurely walk down 5th ave in Park Slope and the whole thing felt wonderfully summery!

Weekend Wrap-Up; Farm Fresh

Just the highlights…

<^> I went strawberry picking with a girlfriend on Sunday.  This activity has been on my radar for years and it was nice to finally give it a go.

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I’m not really sure what the two of us were picturing though, because I definitely rolled up in sandals and a long scarf (with a giant iced coffee and a huge purse).

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After we went back to the car to regroup, we got down to business (literally down, strawberry picking meant an hour crouching in the dirt!) and both came away with big cartons of tasty berries.

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Glover Farms, if anyone local wants to go themselves.  We’d recommend it.

<^> As of June 2nd, Jamba Juice has added a fresh-squeezed juice menu at over 500 locations nationally.  They sent me a gift card so that I could try some out.  The card got here just in time, because I was at two different locations with Jambas this weekend so I was able to try two options.

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Please note – I received a gift card so that I could sample the juice menu free of charge.  I was not provided further compensation for this post.  All opinions are my own.

Let’s start with the negative – these drinks are not juices.  They juice the fruits, carrots, and beets, but then that juice is put into a blender with the greens, making this item a smoothie.  I started this argument with an employee and eventually gave up, but fresh-squeezed juice does not involve a blender.  Period.

That said, inaccurate marketing aside, the drinks were quite tasty and healthy.  Both flavors I tried had a good balance of sweet to green.  And every 16 oz “juice” has 2 full servings of fruit and/or vegetables for minimal caloric cost.  Tropical greens:

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Super greens/apple/pineapple/chia.  210 calories in a 16 oz.

Garden Medley:

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Super greens/carrot/apple/chia.  170 calories in a 16 oz.

<^> I haven’t blogged about them much, but I have been loving the almond thins that Nonni’s sent me.

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The banana chocolate flavor is legit.  And I’m usually annoyed by things that are put in 100 calorie packages but the serving size feels perfect here.

<^> I ate homemade nachos while I watched the 2 hour season intro of Rookie Blue and I practically cried I was so happy.  Summer tv at its best.

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I also had an episode of Awkward.  Best. Night. Ever.

<^> I finally got to try Chinatown Ice Cream Factory.

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Now I totally get the hype; I tasted Zen Butter – sesame and peanut butter – and it was worth the buzz.  I chose taro and black sesame for my cup though.  The black sesame was amazing, super roasty and crunchy.

<^> Saturday’s dinner.

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Asian flavors night.  Bok choy sautéed with green onions in evoo.  Towards the end I tossed in some thinly sliced Persian cucumbers that I quick-pickled in sugar and salt for 20 minutes.

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A big pile of green curry turkey salad.

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The salad was so good it’s getting its own recipe page.  I promise to get that up on the blog tomorrow.

<^> Sunday’s dinner.

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Such a summery – vegetarian – plate!  Corn on the cob, of course.

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With bbq tofu.  I rubbed TJ’s super firm extra-protein tofu with a homemade spice blend {brown sugar, smoked paprika, cumin, and curry powder} and baked it off before tossing the slices in a skillet with some bbq sauce.

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Plus we had chard sautéed in evoo with salt, toasted hazelnuts and a drizzle of maple syrup.

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That teensy pile of greens was what happened when I cooked down this big bunch.

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I bought my greens at a tiny farmer’s market that was happening at the farm museum near my house.

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My chard was picked the same day I bought it!  The only thing fresher is my strawberries 🙂

Have you ever picked your own berries?  We have our eye on apples this fall.