12/31/21

Last week of 2021! Here were some highlights…

The week after Christmas is still an acceptable time for eggnog coffee.

See also – I made a chestnut iced latte. Strong espresso plus half and half with chestnut paste, sugar, vanilla bean, cinnamon, and mace.

This grape kombucha was wonderfully juicy.

See also – rainbow sherbet Hi-Chews.

Whole Food’s peanut butter and jelly bites plus mandarins.

Christmas dinner leftovers – roasted brussel sprouts with duck sausage, sharp cheddar, and chili flakes.

We might actually be addicted to Roast Sandwiches. I’ve been getting take-out from them at least once a week the past month and I think about their roast beef sandwiches constantly. This was a bbq chicken crunch wrap.

Sautéed maple sriracha kale with an herby bean salad. Great Northern beans with green onion, turkey bacon, garlic oil, Sichuan pepper salt, and tons of fresh mint and cilantro.

An even fancier salad. Sautéed kale with garlic and balsamic vinaigrette topped with roasted beets, deglet dates, pomegranate, honey goat cheese, and crumbled beef bacon.

P.S. Starting tomorrow Adam and I are both on vacation together for a week!

‘Twas The Week Before Christmas…

…And we made the most of it with tons of decadent and/or on theme snacks! I worked the holiday weekend but Adam and I were both off Christmas Eve so we got to spend time cuddling the dog, took a trip into the city to enjoy the light display at Hudson Yards, and drove around our area in the evening admiring decorations. Highlights included…

Peppermint cold brew with eggnog.

Stumptown’s salted maple iced latte.

This layered red and green smoothie was more successful in flavor than artistry. Ube, strawberry, grape layered with matcha banana.

The fanciest yogurt bowl – plain skyr with cinnamon, chia seeds, strawberries, nougat halvah, and chestnut paste!

Green juice and a candy cane.

Mint sparkling matcha.

Eggnog iced matcha latte.

Is there anything more luxurious than freshly made fruit salad? This was golden pinepple, strawberries, and mandarins.

This crab dip was a 6.5/10 but these crackers were a 9.5/10.

Peppermint chocolate crinkle cookie from Chip.

Repeat of my two new favorite beers. Cinnamon marshmallow cola sour ale from Evil Twin and an eggnog double IPA from Abomination Brewing.

Lunch at Dante in the West Village. It was worth sitting outside on one of the coldest days of this month! We split steak with salbitxada and a baby kale salad with beats, butternut squash, goat cheese, and hazelnuts. Plus fancy cocktails.

Avocado toast plus a quick pickled cucumber salad. Toasted sourdough, mashed avocado, a fried egg, and chili flakes.

Sautéed cabbage with peanut lime sauce and five spice candied peanuts (very loosely based on this recipe).

Roasted brussel sprouts (with chili flakes and smoked paprika) plus Christmas nachos! Kettle chips with extra-sharp cheddar, green onion, and duck sausage.

Tahini Frozen Cold Brew

Highlights from a weekend with a lot of Brooklyn walking (Prospect Heights to Cobble Hill // Greenpoint to Williamsburg) – – –

Coffee from home – iced phin-brew with ube and chocolate milk.

Edith’s has a brick-and-mortar now and their tahini and oat milk frozen cold brew officially made it into my top five lifetime favorite coffees!

Our spicy everything bagel with smoked mackerel salad and labneh was not bad either.

A very summery sandwich and seltzer from Campbell’s. Smoked chicken, pimento cheese, green apples, pickled onions, mayo, and arugula on sourdough + hibiscus and rose.

We went big for our last Smorgasburg visit of the season. Cookies and cream ice cream with toasted Italian meringue.

Duck Season royal poutine – duck fat fries, duck bacon, cheese curds, and duck gravy!!

This frozen daiquiri from Elsa is my new favorite cocktail. I would like all of my drinks to be served with butterscotch and date molasses from now on!

And this was my newest favorite bubble tea combo – peppermint tea with herbal jelly and strawberry hearts.

Gooey peanut butter cookie.

Dinner at Pinto Thai. We loved the assemble your Thai iced tea.

Chicken satay.

Green papaya salad.

Crispy chicken with walnut, almond, peanut, cashew, and pumpkin seeds.

Spooky Season

It was a nice, Long Island weekend! We tried several new-to-us spots and went to Farmer’s Markets in Huntington and Port Jefferson.

I kicked off Pumpkin Month with a pumpkin pie soda taste-test at work! We were split 50/50 on liking it or not (not for me but it was fun to try, fyi).

Also new cookies and scream m&m’s. Again, split, my coworkers who really like m&m’s at baseline thought they were great.

And Adam and I kicked off spooky season with a trip to GHOST brewing.

Bougie green juice – pineapple, ginger, lemon, cucumber, kale, and mint.

We made a baby iced matcha with salted maple cold foam.

Blackberry jam stuffed doughnut.

Yogurt bowl with honey, jumbo blueberries, coconut, and sweet and spicy pecans.

Tiny cucumbers with buffalo chicken dip.

Macarons from Crave – Oreo and peanut butter cup.

Ridiculous scrambled eggs with butter, cheddar, gouda, leftover roasted squash, urfa chili, and gochugaru.

Whole Foods hot bar – salmon, cauliflower, broccoli, mac and cheese, and roasted butternut squash.

Chicago dog from Rock City Dogs, with crispy fries.

Plus I got a pumpkin ale with an amazing cinnamon sugar rim.

Best meal of the weekend goes to dinner at Ella’s. Great pizza! Tell All Your Friends – roasted Japanese eggplant, marinara, ricotta, garlic confit, mozzarella, and pickled fennel // Dark Side of the Moon – smoked duck, brie cream, caramelized onions, and mozzarella.

Plus inventive cocktails, I had a cherry coke with vodka, bitters, and fernet and a smoked tequila with coffee and grapefruit.

Apples And Marshmallows

Highlights from the weekend include – amazing coffees, gooey marshmallow desserts, and some of the best Vietnamese food we’ve ever eaten. Also we – went to a Farmers’ Market on the water in Garvies Point, drove up to the tip of the North Fork for a picnic at Orient Point, stopped at several farm stands, walked around an apple orchard, visited a few LI craft breweries, took strolls around Greenport and Greenpoint…

Freddo cappuccino from 99 Franklin.

Quad iced latte from Aldo’s. <– this was hands down the best cup of coffee I’ve ever had and my favorite thing I ate all weekend!

Rice Krispies Treat iced latte from Coffee Booths.

Frozen apple cider in an apple orchard.

A flight of IPAs (plus a pumpkin ale!) from North Fork Brewing. We also tried some great things at Uber Geek.

S’mores babka from Spilt Milk Bakes.

We took Korean fried rice with duck (from Ellen’s) on a picnic at Orient Point.

An Apple Month toasted cheese sandwich – sharp cheddar, smoked turkey, and tons of apple butter on sourdough. With cotton candy grapes and roasted broccoli.

Best dinner of the month at Falansai – a great Vietnamese spot with a koi pond in the back garden! Beef dumplings.

Eggplant with fermented tofu bbq sauce and crispy shallots. Plus a housemade salted plum drink and Vietnamese iced coffee.

Spicy green curry with seasonal veggies and silken tofu. Broken rice on the side.

Coconut chia pudding with plums, peanuts, and hibiscus ice.

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.

Gingerbread and Marionberry

No post last weekend because Adam and I were both off and we wanted to spend every second together. We did some fun exploring, including a quick trip to Montclair for sourdough doughnuts and bon bons and hot chocolate.

Highlights from the week include…

Super cute coffee cans.

Cookies and cream creamer!

The best yogurt I’ve ever tasted. It was basically pudding (but better!).

We managed to snag a can of Hardywood‘s Gingerbread Stout.

I made a boozy chocolate peanut butter shake.

Giant pasta bowls – whole-wheat rotini // garlic marinara sauce zhuzhed up with more garlic, fish sauce, and spices // ground turkey // caramelized mushrooms and onion // roasted zucchini.

Sheet-pan hash – potato // onion // poblano pepper // green bell pepper // orange and purple cauliflower // duck fennel sausage.

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.

Pepperminty

The number one weekend highlight was walking around Bushwish for a bit; there is so much street art it is practically like visiting a museum!

Other highlights included…

On its own this Sleigh Ride coffee can was more ho-hum than ho-ho-ho, but mixed into eggnog it was wonderful. Who knew that pepperminty eggnog is what my life was missing?!

This Dalgona iced coffee – with Cafe Bustelo and my favorite nog – was obviously the best thing.

A great breakfast at Kings Kolache.

I had a black bean and pepperjack kolache and a soft taco with cheese, eggs, and hot sauce.

We went to L’imprimerie to get a loaf of bread for next week and ended up with a fantastic lunch. 10/10 sandwich with duck pate, cornichons, and arugula.

Poppy seed and marzipan croissant.

The whole family enjoyed a lovely afternoon at Evil Twin.

Best brews (in my opinion) were the “Sour Pepper Cherry Vanilla Float” soda-style sour ale / the “I always Look Forward to Outdoor Dining in My Snowsuit” triple IPA / and the “How Much Cheese is Even More Cheese” raspberry cheesecake sour ale.

Also we had the Sweet Revenge, the most “me” cocktail of all time – a frozen blend of vodka, aquavit, Aperol, pink guava, cinammon, citrus, and milk punch.

An easy homemade dinner. Trader Joe’s frozen kung pow chicken zhuzhed up with added celery and extra peanuts.

Thankful

I hope all of my American readers had a safe but satisfying Thanksgiving. Adam and I both worked the holiday but were able to continue our tradition of Thanksgiving night nachos! And thankfully our days ended early enough that we had time to chat with my parents while taking the dog on a cocktail walk and Zoom conference with all of my in-laws in the evening.

We spent a little time talking about things we are thankful for which was an easy assignment for me because I feel like thankful is actually my primary state of being – at least five times a day I thank my lucky stars that I just get to know Adam and Webster, let alone have them both love me back.

By the way, even my non-holiday eats were still pretty much on-theme because the short list of superficial things I’m thankful for definitely includes coffee, boba, sprinkles, ice cream, and pizza! Highlights from the past week include…

Stumptown holiday spice iced latte.

Thompson Square Bagels (my favorite in the city) poppy seed with birthday cake cream cheese.

Yogurt bowl win. Plain Greek with peanut butter, cranberry dressing, and granola. Trader Joe’s cranberry dressing (the stuff in the refrigerated section, not the canned one) is the best in the game.

This s’mores kefir was good but not as exciting as I wanted it to be.

Whole Foods has a whole line of specialty holiday ice cream flavors so I am obviously going to be eating ice cream every day for the next month.

Brown sugar creme brulee bubble tea!

Thanksgiving nachos. This year we did Trader Joe’s horseradish and chives potato chips / shredded cheese / duck fennel sausage / shishito peppers / cranberry dressing. Plus roasted brussel sprouts on the side.

And we stayed on theme with maple margaritas.

No pie for dessert, but we did have these festive truffles.

Roasted broccoli and cabbage with spicy cashew sauce and rolled tofu.

We lucked out that Taglio is so close to our apartment because they are currently my favorite pizza in the city. This roasted potato and vodka slice were both 10/10. Plus they have given a ton of food to the workers at Adam’s hospital throughout the pandemic so I am thrilled to support them (multiple times a week!).

Homemade chili topped with sour cream, jalopenos, and pimento cheese. I used duck sausage, black beans, orange bell pepper, poblano pepper, sweet onion, diced tomato, spices, and beer.

Plus a beer for the cook.