Peanut Butter, Pumpkin Butter

Highlights from this past week include…

Iced latte with ube cold foam!

Very into these chocolate peanut butter squares at the moment.

I even put one in a yogurt bowl – with vanilla bean yogurt, cinnamon, banana, and plum.

Yogurt bowl with plain Greek, pumpkin seed butter, pumpkin spice granola, and gumdrop grapes.

This week’s sparkling matchas – yuzu and mango.

This week’s pumpkin beers – the seasonal ale and imperial stout from Southern Tier.

These veggie crisps are great at baseline and even better with homemade guacamole.

I had orange juice in the house for the first time in years so I took the opportunity to make creamsicle milkshakes.

I made an amazing sundae with the guava and soursop ice creams from this fantastic line. Plus sweetened condensed milk, multi-grain Cheerios, and Luxardo cherries.

Brussel sprouts roasted with grapes, turkey kielbasa, white cheddar, and sweet and spicy pecans.

This citrus rice – I skipped the carrots and subbed almonds for cashews – with sautéed fennel and kielbasa. This was our first time cooking fennel – I used the bulb and the fronds – and we loved it.

One-tray sheet-pan hash – potato, sweet potato, red onion, bell peppers, sharp cheddar, and pinto beans, topped with guacamole, sour cream, hot sauce, and heirloom baby tomatoes.

Highlights From The Hudson Valley

Adam and I just spent an absolutely fantastic weekend in the Hudson Valley. We did a day and a half in Hudson followed by a day exploring Tivoli and Woodstock. We had a million coffees and desserts, explored cute downtowns, hiked a bit at the High Falls Conservation Area, and took a quick walk at the Tivoli Bay.

Food and drink highlights include…

Perfectly roasty iced lattes at Hudson Roastery. This was how we started both mornings in Hudson.

Inventive, extra-flakey pastries from Breadfolks in Hudson. This was a lemon meringue danish and a baklava croissant(?!!).

A freshly fried doughnut at Kitty’s Marketplace in Hudson.

We are obsessed with this seltzer, that I have been sadly unable to find back in the city.

Halo halo at Harana Market in Woodstock.

Concord grape sorbet and peanut butter swirl ice cream at Fortunes in Tivoli. This is quite possibly the best ice cream I have ever eaten.

Pupusas with queso and loroco at Casa Latina in Hudson.

Lunch outside at the food truck at Phoenicia Diner in Phoenicia. Sourdough toast with mashed avocado, sweet corn, heirloom tomato, poached egg, lime tofu, and farmers cheese // tuna salad sandwich with line-caught tuna, mayo, herbs, and wasabi tobiko.

A pimento cheese smothered hot dog at The Maker in Hudson.

Woodfired sourdough pizzas at The Mud Club in Woodstock. Bianca Rustica – mozzarella di bufala, vesuvian semi-dry red and yellow tomatoes, and evoo + hot honey // Mellanza de Pesto – tomatoes, roasted eggplant, mozzarella, aged gouda, and house-made pesto.

A terrific dinner at Lil’ Deb’s Oasis in Hudson. Maiden Voyage – rum, spicy vermouth, soursop, tajin salt rim.

Tuna crudo with mango-habanero water, plum, husk cherry, and kohlrabi // sweet plantains with cilantro yogurt.

Crispy potatoes with lime pickle aioli, curry leaf, and pickled chilis.

Bok choy and endive salad with caesar-poblano dressing, pistachios, and anchovy.

Plato tropical – rice, black beans, and garlicy greens.

Fermented lentil dosa with marinated shiitakes, radish, and herbs. I am a sucker for mint in savory dishes and this ended up being one of my favorite things I’ve ever eaten!

All in all, a wonderful weekend!

Hibiscus Shaved Ice

Some highlights from the past week include…

The hipster version of a classic breakfast – citrus kombucha and peanut butter oatmeal.

Lemon lime sparkling matcha with a (new flavor!) lemon poppy seed perfect bar.

I almost never buy cereal but these reminded me of the raisin frosted mini wheats I loved as a kid and I couldn’t pass them up.

These crunchy yellow peas are smoky in a very pleasing way.

We had great empanadas at Love, Nelly. This one was sweet plantain with guava and cheese!

Plus hibiscus + almond shaved ice with sprinkles and condensed milk.

An amazing (giant) lemongrass chicken bahn mi from Nha Minh.

Dinner pasta 1 – whole-wheat penne with marinara sauce (from the pizza we made last weekend), chicken sausage, and roasted zucchini.

Dinner pasta 2 – a loose take on these spicy braised eggplant noodles, with whole-wheat bow ties.

Bunny Bites

Our Easter weekend had major Spring vibes, and not just because I wore head-to-toe pastels the past three days. We met up with friends for ramen and a walk in Prospect Park and were too hot in sweatshirts – a dream for April in New York.

Highlights from the past week included…

On-theme pink for Easter, a strawberry milk dalgona iced coffee.

See also – this very spring-y sugar cane and key lime cocktail.

This clementine and vanilla bean milkshake IPA is hands-down our favorite beverage. Adam and I would both choose it over any milkshake.

Usually I am not keen on coconut in desserts but these chocolate peanut butter bites are very satisfying.

Also I brought these seaweed chips I’m obsessed with into work and my coworkers were equally impressed.

Best snack of the week/month/year was this assortment of candies with a decaf iced coffee with salted maple chocolate cold foam.

We made a big batch of this baked rice. I subbed in vegan soyrizo, halved the rice/broth, and added celery, bell peppers, and urfa pepper. <– highly recommend

Leftovers from Win Son are as good as anything I make at home the first night.

Broccoli, Bacon, Black Sesame, Banana

Highlights from this week include…

Halo-halo inspired yogurt bowls. Vanilla skyr mixed with black sesame paste topped with banana, blueberries, and nata de coco.

Dinners were great this week; I made a big batch of maple tahini broccoli salad. Chicken parm sausages on brioche hot dog buns with ketchup, yellow mustard, and sauerkraut.

Meatball subs. I made baked turkey meatballs packed with garlic, parmesan, and urfa pepper. Plus Trader Joe’s crispy crunchy mushrooms which were 10/10.

Did I plan breakfast for dinner so that this iced macchiato milk stout would be on theme? Yes, 100%.

With cinnamon, pecan, banana pancakes. Plus turkey bacon, blueberries, sumo mandarin, and tons of maple syrup.

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!

Merry And Bright

Last week was great, and filled with great eats. It worked out that I was off from work most of the week, which was just lovely! And Adam and I were both home together for Christmas, which has rarely happened in our marriage. The absolute best part of the week was walking around Manhattan (8 miles!) admiring holiday decorations and checking out the Rockefeller tree – – it was impossible to capture in a photo but even in the daytime the lights were stunning.

Other highlights included…

We obviously had to buy both of these eggnogs to do a comparison taste-test (premium was a bit better!).

Christmas morning dalgona coffee with eggnog.

Max Brenner‘s peanut butter hot chocolate blew our minds.

Trader Joe’s peppermint mini marshmallows are great.

And we loved this peppermint seltzer.

Birthday cake scone from Sweetie Pies on Main. We went out to Cold Spring Harbor to admire their decorations. And yes, we do have a car tree.

This snowball doughnut from Comfortland was insane. It was coated in coconut and stuffed with marshmallow cream.

Plain Greek yogurt bowl with banana, chocolate cashew butter, and cinnamon.

Very impressed with this vegan jerky.

I’ve had my eye on this salmon candy spread for months and it did not disappoint. Paired wonderfully with everything-style crackers.

Still very into this frozen meal. Also fresh mandarin oranges.

Best meal I’ve ever made – crockpot five spice chicken thighs / celery, bok choy, and scallions / rice cakes / gojuchang brown sugar sauce. Topped with chili crisp.

We broiled the leftovers with mozzarella cheese and it somehow got even better.

The best meal we’ve ever eaten came from Milu. Mandarin duck with duck fat rice and marinated cucumbers / brisket with chili garlic mint sauce and tofu seaweed salad / chili crisp fried chicken with scallion mayo. Plus egg tart soft-serve. Every single bite was swoonworthy.

A roasted sheet-pan meal with brussel sprouts, cave aged blue cheese, turkey sausage, dried sweet cherries, yellow raisins, and sweet and spicy pecans.

Soft-scrambled eggs with roasted broccoli rabe and purple cauliflower, cucumber salad, and hot-smoked salmon.

Best Weekend Ever

Adam and I had time together on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and we had just the best weekend ever! We got super lucky with nice weather which makes all of the difference this time of year.

Friday night we met up with friends for distanced fun in Brooklyn. Dinner and some stand-up comedy. Ample Hills does shows on their rooftop and each $10 ticket comes with a giant cup of ice cream! I got Coffee Toffee and No Sleep ‘Til Pumpkin – coffee ice cream with pumpkin gooey butter cake pieces.

Saturday we took a sixteen mile walk around the Upper West Side and Central Park.

And Sunday we visited the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.

Food highlights from the week include…

Rainbow cookie iced latte with edible glitter and pink whipped cream(!!!) from Crave.

Pumpkin things. PSLs from La Colombe and Nitro Beverage Co.

Orwashers sourdough bagel with hand-cut smoked salmon and herbed cream cheese.

Breakfast tacos. With sliced turkey, scrambled eggs, smoked cheddar, and red and green hot sauce.

We tried Laderach chocolate for the first time and now we are smitten.

Snacks from H-Mart. Oreo bubble tea candy and durian chocolates. Plus seaweed and salted egg potato chips.

A two chip chocolate chip cookie from Levain (newest best cookie ever) and a Campfire Cappuccino from Orwashers (with toasted marshmallow and hickory smoke, newest best marshmallow coffee ever).

Dinner at Tradisyon. I had Kare Kare – stewed oxtail and brisket in peanut sauce with eggplant, green beans, and bok choy and shrimp paste.

Plus we got delicious popsicles. Soy milk with mochi and brown sugar and calamansi cheesecake with meringue.

Sprinkles And Sushi

We were easing ourselves back to work so we kept my birthday weekend pretty low-key.  Adam and I made super exciting, sprinkle-packed coffees and walked around Cold Spring Harbor admiring the flowers in the morning and then got sushi take-out for dinner and  I video-chatted with my parents while opening presents.  And the next night we met up with friends for drinks/dinner/a long walk around Park Slope.  It was perfect!

Highlights include…

Birthday dalgona coffee.

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Quad iced latte from Balancero.

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Fredo cappuccino (espresso blended with ice and topped with frothed milk) from The Grand.  <– my new favorite coffee

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Lox and cream cheese biscuit from Comfortland.

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An epic yogurt bowl – – plain Greek yogurt with cashew butter, plum, plucot, apricot, and Bueno Bar.

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I left key lime pie off of my list of favorite foods the other day, but it’s definitely in the top fifteen!  Westbrook’s Key Lime Pie Gose is fantastic.  I also made a wonderful key lime pie cocktail with lime juice, vodka, sweetened condensed milk, and key lime seltzer.

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Birthday sushi.  I got seaweed salad, a roll with egg and pickled vegetables, and a roll with king crab, crunch, avocado, and spicy mayo.

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Chuko Ramen.  I got the kimchi ramen with soy eggs.  It was so great to see friends for the first time in months… we were sitting outside and only took our masks off to eat and we all felt pretty safe about it.

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Cross your fingers for me that it’s an easy transition back to work, please!

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Aha!

Highlights from this week (mostly beverages that blew my mind!) include…

Starbucks vanilla sweet cream nitro cold brew can gets a 7.5/10.  Not as good as a freshly made nitro but better than many canned coffees.

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Wendy’s new cold brew with chocolate Frosty creamer gets a 7/10; a great score for a fast food coffee.  It was not too sweet and the coffee was vastly more robust than Dunkin Donuts’.

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I always enjoy Health Ade Kombucha and their passion fruit tangerine flavor is my new 2nd favorite (it comes in behind their holiday spice flavor).

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AHA = my new favorite sparkling water.  This was the surprisingly fantastic flavor combo of cherry and coffee!  And it’s caffeinated!!

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A decked out yogurt bowl.  With vanilla bean powder, cinnamon, honey, banana, watermelon seed butter, and starry sprinkles.

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My favorite yogurt (Trader Joe’s plain skyr) with my new favorite oatmeal cookies (Stella’s easy one bowl recipe) and some mandarinquats (which I actually didn’t enjoy because they were impossible to eat).

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Crazy good take-out from Cheng Du.  I got kung pow tofu and Szechuan chili oil tofu and it was some of the best Chinese food I’ve ever tasted.

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This was hands-down the best sandwich I’ve ever made.  I could not stop raving out it.

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Brioche bun with Kewpie mayo / chicken thighs marinated in pineapple juice, brown sugar, sriracha, minced ginger, soy sauce, and rice vinegar then roasted / bbq sauce made with the reduced marinade plus ketchup / topped with sauteed sweet onion, poblano pepper, and pineapple.  Served with roasted broccoli.

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