Goodbye, 2018

We finished out 2018 with some fun – a three-day weekend anniversary trip to NYC!

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Favorite Friday activity = Checking out the holiday decorations at Chelsea Market.

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Favorite Saturday activity = Meeting up with friends for lunch + dinner and a long walk through Brooklyn in between (Park Slope,  Gowanus, Downtown Brooklyn, Cobble Hill, Dumbo).

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Favorite coffee = Birthday cake iced latte at Milk Bar.

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Favorite breakfast = Croissants at Cafe D’Avignon in Dekalb Market Hall.  They are the best in the city and we’re obsessed.  The coffee isn’t bad either.

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Favorite lunch = Ramen at Chuko.  I had the sesame garlic ramen with woodear mushroom, spicy mustard greens, and scallions topped with poached egg, fried tofu, and garlic chili oil.

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Favorite drink = Frozen Painkiller at Ramona.

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Favorite dinner = Oxomoco.  We told the waitress to stop us if ordered too much – she didn’t but I’m not mad!  The tamarind orange margarita was good.

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The Rosita – mezcal, sherry, grapefruit, and hibiscus – was even better.

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The caesar salad with wood fired romaine and cotija masa crunch was the best I’ve ever had.

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Masa fried cauliflower with black mole, butternut squash crema, pepitas, and oregano.

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Charred carrot tamal with green garlic and hoja santa mole.

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Tlayuda Oxomoco – camote, quesillo, pipian, pomegranate, and brown butter. <– Adam’s favorite dish of the night

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Chicken al pastor tacos with grilled pineapple, crispy skin, and salsa morita.

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We powered through two desserts because we knew they’d be amazing.  Oaxacan chocolate cake with coffee ice cream, cajeta, and walnut crumble and black sesame curd with black sesame crumble and pasionfruit raspado. <– my favorite dish of my life

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Hi, 2019!

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Christmas Cheer

Holiday highlights…

For the 1st time in six years Adam and I were both off for Christmas!  It was the perfect day.  We opened presents in front of Nick Offerman.

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And got Thai take-out and watched The Office.

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A good 90% of my gifts were edible so I spent the rest of the day eating sugar.

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Related – because my cousin knows me very well, her Christmas gifts to me included delicious homemade latkes

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and Christmas-themed beer.

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The rest of the week included…

I figured for my last round of coffee and ‘nog I should go big or go home – Homestead Creamery’s eggnog is the best I’ve ever tasted.

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I spent more than an hour one night making dal that ended up being inedible but the roasted purple brussel sprouts I tossed into the oven as an afterthought we stunningly good.

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We made red and green sheet pan crab fried rice.  Use this method.  With basmatti rice, crab, green onion, red bell pepper, and broccoli.

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P.S. Today is our 11th wedding anniversary (and our 16 year!! dating anniversary) and we have super fun stuff planned ♥♥

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It’s Beginning To Taste A Lot Like Christmas

I did not exactly hit it out of the park on dinners this past weekend – yesterday we went out to all-you-can-eat sushi with my cousin and that was the only night I deviated from Wegman’s hot bar.  To be fair, I had to work Sunday and I needed to conserve my strength!

Five highlights from the past three days, four of which are on theme…

{1} La Colombe peppermint mocha latte can.  Bonus – Trader Joe’s cedar balsam candle smells divine.

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{2} TJ’s nog flavored coconut yogurt with gingerbread spice Life cereal.  All I needed were some red and green sprinkles!

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{3} Gingerbread and salted caramel gelato.  I think I would like gingerbread items more if they were always paired with caramel, you need something to cut the spice.

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{4} New Belgium’s Accumulation white IPA.  This was the year I discovered I enjoy IPAs, especially double IPAs!

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{5} We finally made it to Quality Pie and now we want to go back ASAP.

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I had fried chicken on a biscuit with maple sriracha butter.

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…And A Partridge In A Pear Tree!

This post includes five sweet things, four holiday theme items, three types of eggnog, two homemade dinners…

Stumptown Cold Brew with Trickling Springs egg nog.

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Grady’s Cold Brew with Promised Land Holiday Nog.

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I made my banana toffee magic bars for a cookie exchange at work and they came out really well!  I subbed in caramel chips for butterscotch and it think it was an upgrade.

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Sweethaus‘ holiday cupcakes are somehow eight times better than their already fantastic regular offerings.  Eggnog and gingerbread with meringue frosting.

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Hardywood’s gingerbread stout is stupid good and dangerously easy to drink.

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This lavender can from Kombucha Town is my current favorite kombucha; it’s very mellow.

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Fancy tuna salad makes an easy dinner.  A mix of tuna and smoked sardines with mayo, dijon, and capers / roasted brussel sprouts / baby carrots / Trader Joe’s everything crackers.

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But Wegman’s take-home meal section makes an even easier dinner.  Spicy general tso chicken with fried rice and seaweed salad.

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And one night I did legitimately cook – a protein, some veggies, and even a sauce.  Asian take-out style tofu!  This recipe but with oven fried tofu (similar to this method) in place of chicken.  I also used rice vinegar instead of red wine vinegar and added in some cashews.

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Christmas Lights And Eggnog

Adam had to go to Baltimore for a conference this weekend and I tagged along to hang out with family that lives in Maryland.  It was a fantastic weekend.  Five fun highlights include…

(1) A new bar, stuffed with chocolate almond butter.

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(2) Delicious bowls of chicken soup provencal my aunt made.

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(3) Eggnog iced coffee and an eggnog cream stuffed doughnut from Sugar Shack.

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(4) A trip to the Guinness brewery.

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(5) Baltimore’s Christmas Street, which is basically what the inside of my head looks like all December.  It was totally magical.

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Gingerbread Galore

So many holiday flavors consumed this weekend!  <– Squee!  It was just kind of a great weekend in general – we had no major to-dos looming and the weather was fantastic.  We got to go to brunch with my cousin and her boyfriend and on a long walk with the dog.  Next weekend brings out of town plans so it was really nice to keep things low-key.

Highlights…

Forager’s coconut cream cashew milk cold brew.  It was yummy but way too filling to consume all at once.

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Starbucks’ Juniper iced latte – I recommend getting double the espresso and half of the syrup so it’s not too pine-y [holiday flavor #1].

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Plain Greek yogurt with maple, almond butter granola, and the last of the cranberry sauce.

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Brunch at Renewal was delicious, we will definitely be back.  I had a gin fizz with egg white and cream.

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Roasted brussel sprouts with garlic fondue and sherry gastrique / field greens side salad with grapefruit vinaigrette / fries with pimento cheese and aioli.

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Sugar cookie frozen yogurt and eggnog gelato [holiday flavors #2 and 3}.

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King of Pop’s gingerbread was the best popsicle I’ve ever eaten, it was like a cookie dunked in milk [holiday flavor #4].  Enjoyed at Hardywood where I also had a Christmas Morning – gingerbread stout with Black Hand Coffee [holiday flavor #5].

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This Sweethaus gingerbread cupcake with meringue frosting was the best baked good we’ve ever eaten, hands down [also holiday flavor #6!].

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Trader Joe’s cauliflower latkes for the first night of Hannukah [holiday flavor #7] with a chicken thigh take on this Mississippi Roast recipe.

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Early Thanksgiving

Early post because my extended family is coming into town for Thanksgiving and I am taking a three-day weekend to spend time with my parents!  I’m working the holiday (today) and then I am free until Monday.  Early Thanksgiving because I already managed to cram five holiday meal flavors into a short week of eating.  <– good thing too, I spent yesterday evening baking my contributions for today’s meal and I did so much taste-testing that I may actually still be full this afternoon!

Eggnog (1) in my coffee.  I’ve moved on from the soy nog, I just wasn’t a fan this year.

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Pie (2) in my breakfast bar.  Betty Lou’s cherry.  I know cherry isn’t strictly a Thanksgiving flavor but I’m still counting it.

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Stuffing (3) with roasted brussel sprouts (4).  I actually made something of a stuffing-dressing/strata hybrid, with several eggs stirred into my stock.  Plus roasted celery and onion, hunks of raisin pecan sourdough, fresh sage and parsley, and turkey breakfast sausage.

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With a local cranberry (5) gose and maple brown ale for some thematic booze.

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I hope all of my American readers have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

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