Miracle On 9th Street

New York City is the best place on Earth and that is doubly true around holidays!  Adam and I had a lovely weekend with lots of walking and we explored Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan and saw and ate all sorts of fun holiday and city things.

Like lights in the Lower East Side.

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And wild swans in Sheepshead Bay.

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Coffees, specialty cocktails, pizza rolls, and other fantastic eats…

Mace’s Miracle Christmas Cocktail Pop-up is officially my new favorite holiday activity!  I wish I had taken pictures inside because it was freaking magical.

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The specialty cocktails were so fun!  I had a Not Even a Mouse – pumpkin spice infused rye whiskey, Budweiser-marshmallow syrup, pumpkin puree, egg, and a marshmallow mouse.

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And a Snowball Old Fashioned – gingerbread bourbon, sugar, and pecan bitters.

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Iced latte love.  Brooklyn Roasting Company.

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Orso.

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Yogurt bowl win.  Plain Greek yogurt with maple jelly and vanilla bean powder with golden kiwi and granola on top.

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Ice & Vice double scoop that was truly the best ice cream Adam or I have ever eaten.  TBT – earl grey, dark chocolate, and speculoos chip and PSL – pecan, sorghum, and latte toffee.

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The Nog at Sugar Sweet Sunshine, pumpkin cake layered with eggnog pudding and whipped cream.

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Luda’s Dumplings.

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We shared shrimp and loaded potato with garlic sour cream and mushrooms on top.

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Brunch at Butter & Scotch, aka the restaurant that’s decorated like the inside of my heart.

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I had biscuits with mushroom gravy and an egg on top.

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The NameShake.

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Birthday cake slice (the leftovers were still moist 24 hours+ later, fyi) and a Unicorn Treat – a brown butter cookie drenched in sprinkles!

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The space was adorable, the music was wonderful, and as we were rolling ourselves to the door the waitress brought us a chocolate chip cookie to go since we had been so excited about everything.

Dinner at Thursday Kitchen.

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You have to get a light-up booze-filled capri sun!  I went with strawberry.

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The menu is tapas style so we got to taste a lot.  Everything was so interesting, and perfectly spiced.  Pan-seared plantains with Korean chimichurri, honey ricotta, roasted pistachio, dried cranberry, and crispy plantain crumble.

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Duck confit empanada with dill crème fraiche, cumin, and pickles.

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Gnocchi with Korean chili pepper sauce, garlic aioli, parmesan, and crispy seaweed.

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My homemade dinners weren’t bad either.  I made vegetarian “rice” and beans casserole.

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Riced cauliflower / pinquito beans / onion and bell peppers (yellow, orange, and green) baked in evoo / red enchilada sauce / sour cream / shredded cheese.  I topped my bowl with more sour cream and some Cholula sauce plus beet and goat cheese cassava chips.

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An epic take on cheeseburgers and fries.

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Roasted green beans and butternut squash.

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Cheeseburger roll ups!  Crescent roll dough / ground turkey sautéed with chopped onion and pickle relish / mayo and ketchup / shredded cheese / brushed with garlic butter.

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Happy 1st week of December!

Last Week I…

Last week I loved: Webster!

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Adam and I can’t believe how handsome he is and we text each other pictures of him constantly but they’re on my phone so they usually don’t make it to the blog.

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Last week I watched: Rick and Morty.  We’re almost through the 3rd season and it has been fantastic.  I think season 2 was the best so far though.  I also have been re-rewatching The Office because I’m obsessed.  It’s so funny and I love when shows have characters (Jim and Pam) just adore each other with minimal drama.  The Micheal Scott seasons are perfectly cringe-inducing – I have really bad secondhand embarrassment anyways and I can barely watch most of his scenes.

Last week I ate: More samples from the healthy brand showcase.

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Setton Farms is America’s 2nd largest pistachio producer and their stuff is delicious.  We’ve been enjoying chocolate-covered pistachios along with the perfectly salted nut blend.

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I also liked the pineapple flavored raisins from Amazing Fruit.

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Last week I pumpkined: Four new items!  See more below.

Last week I drank:  Key lime La Croix.  The newest flavor is delicious, and currently my favorite fizzy water.

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Last week I listened to: “Bodak Yellow” by Cardi B on repeat.  It’s super catchy and a lot of her word-play is very clever.  I’ve also been listening to a ton of Betty Who.

Other food highlights…

This week’s coffee combo.

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Pumpkin tres leches bubble tea from Teapsy in Astoria.

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Pumpkin and salted maple pecan frozen yogurt with peanut butter, marshmallow cream, Oreos, and mochi.

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I made a fancied-up version of my Spinach and Artichoke Egg Pie.  I precooked the veggies with olive oil, onion, anchovies, and tons of garlic.  Plus I substituted cottage cheese because I like it better than ricotta.

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No carbohydrate component to that meal so we had potato chips and pumpkin beers, woo-hoo!

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We tried pizza from a new place – Frantoni’s.  Adam and I shared four things so we could try a lot of the menu.  The eggplant slice was my favorite but the buffalo chicken was good too.

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I made bagel and lox nachos!  Everything bagel chips // TJ’s four cheese blend // hot smoked salmon // green onions // and cream cheese sauce with ginger, soy sauce, and brown sugar.

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Plus roasted brussel sprouts on the side.

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I made buffalo chicken chili.  Tons of sauteed onion, green onion, carrots, and celery // tomato paste and crushed tomatoes // salt, pepper, celery seed, and smoked paprika // shredded chicken breast // black beans // cream cheese.

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Have a great week!

Weekend Update: Chilaquiles Edition

Our Saturday and Sunday plans mirrored each other and my weekend days ended up following a template:

maple iced latte in Brooklyn // brunch at a Chris Santos restaurant in the Lower East Side with chilaquiles // ice cream for dessert // walk across a bridge // a veggie-forward homemade dinner  {x2}

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Iced nonfat latte with four shots of espressso and maple at Otha’s.

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Iced nonfat Maple Shay with extra espresso at Brooklyn Roasting Co.

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Brunch at Beauty and Essex.  Vanilla doughnuts stuffed with raspberry jam to start.

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I ordered a cocktail with tequila, honey, and smoked blackberries.  It was good but Adam’s neon green Emerald Gimlet stole the show – Belvedere vodka, basil, lemon nectar, and fresh lime.

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BaE is tapas style so we ordered three savory dishes to share.  Crab egg foo young with shiitake mushrooms.

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Chilaquiles with and pulled chicken, sunny side up egg, cotija cheese, and pickled red onion.

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And braised chicken meatballs with sheep milk ricotta, wild mushroom, and truffle.

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Brunch at Stanton Social.  This is another sharing-encouraged spot so again we picked three plates to split.  Fried chicken on blue corn waffles with corn pudding, fresno chile, and maple syrup.

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Housemade naan with lamb bacon, zaatear spiced labneh, and pickled tomato.  It was totally swoonworthy.

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Chilaquiles with hand pulled chicken, sunny-side up egg, and feta.  We preferred the Stanton Social chilaquiles to Beauty and Essex.

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I also had a delicious Vietnamese coffee cocktail with Finlandia, Kahlua, cold brew coffee, and chocolate bitters.

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Fueled across the Williamsburg Bridge with a doughnut ice cream sandwich at Stax.  We had bourbon cornflake ice cream with Frosted Flakes and condensed milk on top.

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Fueled across the Manhattan Bridge with Ice & Vice.  Red (hibiscus, rose, Swedish Fish fluff) and Opium Den (white sesame, toasted poppy seed, lemon bread crouton) in a Froot Loops cone.  The red ice cream was our favorite thing we ate all weekend.

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I made an updated version of my Cheesy Eggplant Bake with meat sauce.  For the sauce I cooked ground turkey breast and onion in olive oil with garlic, oregano, salt, pepper, and cayenne with tomato paste and crushed tomatoes.

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Quinoa bowls for Sunday dinner.  Tri-color quinoa topped with smoked trout, lemon pepper Swiss chard, and butter sautéed chanterelles.

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^^^

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Top Five This Week

{1}  Fiber One sent me samples of their newest product line – layered chewy bars.

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I’m a fan!  Sometimes fiber-added products hurt my stomach, but these gave me no issues.  They are chewy without being tooth-breaking and salty-sweet – my favorite flavor combo.  They come in double chocolate almond.

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And the even more delicious salted caramel and dark chocolate.

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{2}  I made a tasty strawberry sauce.

It was quick and easy, just fresh strawberries quartered and cooked in a skillet over medium heat.

Paired with passion fruit yogurt with Nature’s Path Heritage Flakes.

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And plain yogurt with vanilla granola and a few Luxardo cherries.

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{3}  Ben & Jerry’s and New Belgium partnered on a cookie dough beer and I paired it with cookie dough ice cream.

We ended up not loving the beer, which had a chemical aftertaste to it, but the ice cream (which I topped with melty Biscoff) was obviously delicious.

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And speaking of Speculoos…

{4}  Starbucks has a cookie butter bar and it is out of this freaking world.

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{5}  I spent 3+ hours making over-the-top lasagna.

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Loosely based on this recipe, it was totally worth the time commitment.

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I made a red sauce with ground turkey and TJ’s soy chorizo.  My béchamel was a four-cheese doozy made with cheddar-gruyere and parmesan-gouda. I skipped the ricotta, but did top my dish off with more parmesan-gouda.

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{bonus}  My schedule – I worked President’s Day and work this upcoming weekend which means I was off from work yesterday and today for a midweek weekend!  And Adam is off today too so we’ve got some Upper East Side fun planned.  See you next week!

Chocolate Strawberry And Banana Date

A short post for a short week; here were my top five tastes…

Snack-pack lunch at work.  Crispy broccoli, jerky(1), baby carrots, and a Cara Cara Orange.

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I am a sucker for limited edition Oreos(2).  I always eat them by splitting two in half to make one double-stuffed cookie.

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Homemade dinner, chicken with bbq sauce, roasted asparagus, and another killer potato(3) recipe from Serious Eats.

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Dinner out with a friend, I finally made it to Taïm  and I loved it.  We had sandwiches(4) and smoothies(5).

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  1. Smoked Salmon Maple Stick from EPIC
  2. chocolate-covered strawberry limited edition Oreos
  3. cheesy onion, bacon, and potato gratin
  4. pita with balaganoush, tahini, Moroccan carrots, and pickled cabbage
  5. date, lime, banana, and soy milk

Wrapping It Up

Thanks to the holiday day and compensatory days for working the preceding and following weekends… I only worked two days this week!  Tuesday and Friday on and the rest of the week to do as I pleased, not a bad way to end 2016.  Though now I do work both NYE and the first day of 2017.

It was also a big week in my personal life, on Wednesday Adam and I celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary (and 14th anniversary of being together)!  We didn’t exchange gifts or do anything crazy to celebrate, it’s hard to get too excited when we are so darn close to 10 years.  <– eeeeeeeeeeee!

Food highlights for the week – – –

Yogurt lunches.  Dulce de leche Chobani with granola, plus a snapdragon apple and a vanilla latte can.  Out of 10, the coffee and yogurt both get a 9+.

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2% Fage with Soom chocolate tahini, sweet and spicy pecans, chopped apple, and chia seeds.

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Dinner at Bubby’s.  I met a girlfriend in Chelsea midweek and this is where we ended up.  Neither of us ordered pie, but I had a great frisee salad with poached egg and sherry vinaigrette.

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Iced coffee with princess emulsion (fancy vanilla extract that had a strong undertone of lemon and actually wasn’t great in coffee).

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Fantastically roasty Terremoto Coffee skim latte was the best drink of the week, especially because I plopped a scoop of goat’s milk tahini ice cream in it a minute later.

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Gelt!

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On our anniversary – which we actually celebrated a day late because Adam’s schedule is insane – we cuddled on the couch and watched our wedding video with a split of champagne and the last eggnog iced coffee of the season.

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We did dinner at Shalom Japan and I didn’t take a single picture.  I did snap dessert – an ice cream date at OddFellows.  Toasted marshmallow + amazing caramel chocolate toffee.

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Best dish of the week = I made legit macaroni and cheese.  Pimento cheese macaroni and cheese.

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Whole wheat macaroni / sautéed green onions and chopped pimento / mornay sauce with sharp cheddar and raw milk cheddar / panko on top.

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With spinach salad with red bell pepper, sweet and spicy pecans, and honey mustard, and roasted green beans with fried green onion.

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See you next year!  <– my favorite dumb joke

Back At It

With a crazy-busy week at work and a weather in the tens in NYC yesterday, we are definitely not on vacation any more, Toto!

Thankfully my day-to-day life takes place in the best city in America with the world’s nicest husband and the universe’s cutest dog so it’s really not too bad.

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And I get to eat some pretty yummy food too.  Flavors of the week – salmon, green beans, eggs, and egg nog…

This week’s coffee combo decked my mornings with boughs of jolly.

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Christmas blend espresso roast with soy/nog.  I also had a 2nd (and sometimes 3rd) cup at work everyday because going back to work after a vacation kind of sucks.

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Vanilla bean yogurt with Bear Naked cacao + cashew butter granola.  Plus a super juicy Pacific Rose apple.

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Oatmeal with chia seeds, chocolate-covered cacao nibs, and gingerbread spice.  Plus an apple on the side and a scoop of peanut butter on top once it was cooked.

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Yesterday I had a ridiculously cheesy toasted turkey sandwich from the cafeteria that I was too busy to snap a picture of.  And Wednesday the hospital served us a holiday luncheon, complete with the best steamed green beans any of us had ever tasted.

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It was a week of sweets, including on-theme jelly beans.

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Plus Brooklyn Cupcake.  Guava cheese and coquito <– the best flavor.

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I also ate all of the Oreo frosting off of this slice of red velvet.

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I knew Monday would knock me out, so I got dinner started before work that morning.  Strata with a super simple salad with honey mustard dressing.

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The egg casserole was this recipe but with whole-wheat pumpernickel, maple chicken sausage, and a nutty raw-milk cheddar.  The leftovers were great the next day too.

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Wednesday Adam and I did a date night at the beautiful Sisters’ Restaurant.  I want to go back for brunch so I get a better view, plus hopefully my food shots will be a little better.

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We shared drinks – Nine Pin Cider for me – and two appetizers.  Sweet potato fries with local maple crème fraiche and fried cauliflower and capers.  The cauliflower was ahh-mazing.  And we both decided the Nine Pin is the best cider on the market.

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I ordered the salmon niçoise, more green beans for me!  It was great, the fish was perfectly cooked.

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More salmon for dinner yesterday.  I made garlic salmon patties with sautéed bok choy with fried oyster mushrooms and a quick sauce of soy/honey/sriracha.  I ate my second patty while I assembled our plates, with a creamy cocktail sauce for dipping.

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Have a merry weekend!