Claro, Cake, Carrots

I worked Friday, Saturday, Sunday (and I keep working Monday, Tuesday!) but I ate enough sugar the last three days to keep me Energizer Bunny-ing through.

Highlights from a tasty weekend…

Birthday cake iced latte from Milk Bar.

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Trader Joe’s cold brew bottles are the 3rd best packaged cold coffees, beat only by Chameleon and Grady’s.

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Fresh alphonso mango.  In strawberry lingonberry yogurt with bran flakes cereal.

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Desserts from House of Inasal.  Halo halo with the best leche flan of my life.

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And ube tres leches!

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Ice cream from Van Leeuwen.  A vegan flavor that was terrible and a s’mores flavor that was my new favorite.

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Dinner at Sauvage // French food.

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Lemony marinated olives.

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Charred heirloom carrots with labne, pistachio, vadouvan, and pistou.

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We shared all the entrees with mushrooms.  Salmon with sorrel, shiitake mushrooms, lentils, and buttermilk sauce.

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Poulet au Vin Jaune with morels and fava beans.  I don’t eat chicken skin that often but it was by far the best component of this particular dinner!

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Dinner at Claro // Oaxacan food.  I had the housemade tepache (a fermented, sweetened pineapple beverage) with a shot of mezcal – they separated my cocktail for me so I could taste the tepache on its own.

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The menu was meant to be enjoyed family style so we ordered all of the things.  Too many things in fact, I wish they had stopped us one or two dishes earlier.  Asparagus and avocado tostado with queso freso, radish, and spring onion.

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Tacos with chipotle shrimp and quesillo cheese.

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Garnachas (like an open quesadilla) with rabbit and duck confit, pate, fermented vegetables, and cojita cheese.

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Memela (masa cakes) with wild mushrooms, espazote, goat cheese crema, and pasilla.

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Goat’s milk chocolate ice cream with goats milk caramel, peanuts, and toasted marshmallows.

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Happy Monday!

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געשמאַק

Adam is post-call this morning and I am taking my weekend day off so we get to share the same space for a bit, woo-hoo!  We have some really exciting date options to chose from, like a grocery trip and maybe the gym.

I worked Saturday and Sunday – and was off on Friday but spent the entire day reading and/or watching tv – so I don’t have too much excitement to share this recap.  We did go on a very delicious dinner date Saturday night though.

weekend highlights…

Coffee coffee.

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Cinnamon chocolate pudding.

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Snowdays shaved ice!  Black sesame with grass jelly, mochi, and strawberry sauce.

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Yesterday I made a dish that was moussaka-adjacent.  No potatoes but the other layers were there.  Roasted eggplant / sauteed turkey with tons of onions, spices, and tomato / mornay sauce with parmesan.

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And Saturday we did an awesome Israeli dinner at Timna.  You select an entree and then the table gets all of the appetizers tapas-style.  Also we ordered two desserts because we just couldn’t choose!  It was one of our best meals to date.  Falafel with pickled mango.

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Kubneh bread baked in a flower pot served with crushed tomato, creme-fraiche, and jalapeño salsa.

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Grilled beet salad with beluga lentils // tuna sashimi with green tabouli, tatziki, and ponzu // grilled cauliflower and artichoke with curried yogurt, homemade raisins, and pickled onion // smoked eggplant with feta cheese and sumac.

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I had “the fish,” striped bass with cherry tomato confit, grilled zucchini, grilled fennel, fried eggplant, Greek yogurt, and bread crumbs.  We loved the meal from start to finish but the fried eggplant was my favorite bite of the night.

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Kubneh bread with creme patisserie, white chocolate, and honey and sage ice cream.

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Sicilian pistachio ice cream with tahini, silan, and shredded halva.  swoon 

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Back to the grind we go!

Vacation Part 1/3

We’re on vacation!  Friday through next Sunday Adam and I have 10 glorious days off together!!  We’re spending time in New Orleans and next weekend we’re doing a staycation in the city.

You can tell we’re in vacation-mode because we ate 90% of our meals out of the house and with drinks and dessert and have been purchasing all of the coffees.

Espresso at Variety.

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New Orleans cold brew at Blue Bottle.

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Espresso at Mixtape.

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Iced coffee and a chocolate croissant at L’imprimerie.

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Drinking chocolate at Devocion.

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Dinner at Sally Roots.  Booze face.

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I got jerk chicken ramen!  Chicken broth, yummy jerk chicken, noodles, fish cakes, bamboo, spinach, and wood ear mushroom.

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We did dessert at Guadalupe Inn.  Drinks with meh chocolate tres leche cakes and churros stuffed with fabulous goat milk caramel.

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Best brunch of the year at Rider.  Safe Word of the Day and Covet Thy Neighbor’s Drink.

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The Cure = crispy rice and lentil cakes, duck confit, cilantro, hoisin, sriracha, and poached egg.  Adam had lox and fries, a combo you didn’t know how much you needed.

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Dessert at Odd Fellows.  Crème brulee and banofee ice creams with brown butter cake crumbs on top.

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Pretty damn good brunch at Forrest Point.  This drink was named “Fancy Pants,” Flor de Cana, Wild Turkey, Pedro Ximenez sherry, pineapple, lemon, Lapsang Souchong, star anise, cinnamon, and demerara sugar!

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Chilaquiles!

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Skillet s’mores with Fernet.

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I did manage to make some dinners at home – chicken enchilada casserole.  I loosely followed this recipe from Jo Cooks, with brown rice and the addition of green chilis.  With roasted zucchini on the side and chips for dipping.

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Other things that are making me happy… this assortment of cola-flavored goodies.  The gum was great the seltzer was too plain.

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We found (freshly made) coquito at a bar in Bushwick!  It tastes like coconut eggnog and joy.

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The Body Shop sent me this sweet holiday gift.  Fantastic eyeshadow and delightful smelling things.  FYI – they are offering a bunch of gift sets that will contribute to rainforest conservation, I recommend everything strawberry.

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Happiest thing of all?  I’m on vacation!

Highlights From Last Week/end

Long time no blog! Life has been busy and work has been crazy and Adam had time to spend with me last weekend so I didn’t waste a single moment on the computer.  This weekend is going to be pretty exciting too… follow me on Instagram for instant updates.

Speaking of Insta, do you follow @coffeecupsoftheworld?  We went to the pop up exhibit in Manhattan last weekend and thought it was pretty neat.

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Fitting, since coffee’s been a pretty big feature of the past week.

Here were some of the best bites…

To start, the single best bites of the month.  Milk Bar for an iced latte (my favorite in the city) and a Thanksgiving croissant – “stuffing” flavored bread filled with in-house roasted, shredded turkey, homemade gravy, and cranberry sauce!  Adam and I swooned and were more than a little sad that we shared instead of getting one each.

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Chocolate halvah iced coffee.  Better in theory but still not terrible in practice.

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Chocolate cherry smoothie – plain Greek yogurt, frozen cherries, vanilla almond milk, vanilla bean paste, brown sugar,cocoa nibs.

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Brunch at Lighthouse.  With a grapefruit mimosa.  We were blown away by our first chilaquiles experience, they are like a bowl full of nachos!

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Brown butter sprinkled chocolate chip cookies I made for a birthday party at work.  I used the dough base from this recipe and they were fantastic, the little bit of crunch from the sprinkles was perfect.

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Ice cream from Davey’s.  A Halloween candy mashup and cookie butter chocolate chip.

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Dinner at Ducks Eatery.  I don’t have a photo of my dinner, which was undercooked and kind of gross, but the appetizer/drinks situation was breathtaking.  Exhibit A – smoked mussels with chili oil on toast with maple, smoked butter, and chives.

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12th st sour with egg white foam.

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Pièce de résistance – the Café Canard – Tullamore dew, espresso, brown sugar, cream, and nutmeg.  I’m not one for hot coffee but sipping it through a cloud of sweet, foamed cream is pretty appealing.

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Lentil bowls.  Red lentils cooked with with garlic, ginger, red bell pepper, carrot, onion, tomato paste, and turkey bacon.  Topped with cheese, hot sauce, plain Greek yogurt, and a serving of roasted zucchini.

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Stoneridge Orchards sent me a nice package of dried fruits to try.  Their products are all organic and always produced without sulfites, artificial preservatives, colors, hydrogenated oils, high fructose corn syrup, etc.

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Dark chocolate cherries with almonds were a work snack.

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P.S. that snazzy glitter sleeve is part of my ongoing campaign to make my office life more enjoyable.  Fancy glass water bottle and a felt succulent.

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The rest of the berries were paired with toasted nuts and roasted things for some “it still feels like fall” dinners.  10 out of 10 for this product review, by the way, these were by far the best dried fruits I’ve ever eaten.  Sometimes dried cranberries can be displeasingly chewy but the texture here was quite pleasant.

Warm kale salad – sauteed kale / dried blueberries / pepitas / turkey bacon / honey thyme balsamic vinaigrette.

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Cranberry almond chicken salad – shredded chicken breast / mayo / stone ground mustard / dried cranberries / slivered almonds.  The sweetness of the cranberries was perfect with the mustard.

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Roasted vegetable medley – butternut squash / shredded brussel sprouts / dried cherries / pecans / more vinaigrette / topped with goat cheese.

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I’m off to enjoy a long weekend!

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Working Weekend Wrap-Up

No traditional weekend for me, my only day off was Thursday.  I’m actually working straight through this Thursday – 7 days in a row – which means next weekend will be a three-day extravaganza!  It’s hard to complain about 7 days anyway, my last year at Buff State when I was doing school/internship/part-time job there were a few stretches where I went 30 days plus without a true day off.

The past 4 days in numbers –

  • glasses of iced coffee – 7
  • packed lunches – 0
  • product reviews* – 2
  • desserts – 10 billion
  • books read start to finish** – 1

notes: *the products were both sent to me free of charge and neither company gave me additional compensation for this post; **the book was a murder mystery that I actually hated but needed to know the ending to

Here are the highlights…

Key lime cookie from Schmackary’s.

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With white chocolate, pistachios, and cream cheese icing.  The middle is the best part.

Three new dark chocolate flavors of Nonni’s Almond THINaddictives* – Dark Chocolate Banana Almond, Dark Chocolate Cherry Almond, and Double Dark Chocolate Almond.  FYI – hit up their Facebook page for a new flavors giveaway.

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They are 70-80 calories per pack (2 thins) and crisp but not too crumbly.  I though the double chocolate flavor was a bit plain but the cherry and banana had great notes of tart and sweet.  This week I paired them with my coffee but I’m also looking forward to crumbling them into yogurts.

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That combo is killer, Grady’s is thick and sweet and it makes my heart sing.

Traditional breakfast.

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Potatoes, scrambled eggs, and (turkey) bacon.  Covered in ketchup because I grew up in St. Thomas and we put ketchup on everything.  <– real talk, I didn’t know that ketchup wasn’t an automatic pairing for chicken wings until I went to college; now I mostly use other condiments but scrambled eggs always get ketchup

The cafeteria is pretty grim over the weekend but Friday I did eat this seafood feast.

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Fried shrimp, potato wedges, and vinegar-based cole slaw.  We had leftover ice cream from our birthday party and I taught my coworkers about Australian iced coffees.

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They loved it!

Since I didn’t have my yogurt lunches I got my probiotics in the form of Health-Ade Kombucha*.

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Their small-batch (2.5 gallons) fizz is organic, vegan, kosher, and gluten-free.  They do their fermenting in glass containers only and the bottles are fantastic and just begging to house a handful of wildflowers.  Health-Ade generously sent me a case of Ginger Lemon.

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I have to confess here that I actually kind of hate ginger.  Nonetheless, I found the kombucha to be very enjoyable.  The flavor behind the spice was very “clean” and just sweet enough.  I still wouldn’t buy this flavor once I finish my samples but I will damn sure scoop up Pink Lady Apple or California Grape the minute I spot them.  P.S. I brought a bottle to a ginger loving friend and she said it was hands down the best kombucha she’s ever tasted.

Date night in Hell’s Kitchen.  My NCIS obsession finally paid off for Adam – I took us to Donna Bella Bake Shop because it’s co-owned by Pauley Perrette (aka lab tech Abby).  We had a dreamy lemon bar and this delectable brownie with a cookie crust and ganache on top.

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We walked past Room Service and decided to do Thai for dinner.

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That guava mojito was terrible and weak.  But the crispy duck salad wasn’t half bad.

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I ordered the Pad Noh Mai for dinner, shrimps, minced chicken, fresh basils, Thai chili, and bamboo shoots with herbs chili paste garlic sauce.

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The menu promised spice and it delivered.  I wouldn’t recommend this restaurant though, Hell’s Kitchen is a bastion of excellent, authentic Thai restaurants and you can do better.

I cooked!  A real dinner, a stew, made of vegetables no less.  I put the crock pot to work for me, filled to its brim.  Onion / garlic / carrot / kale / red bell pepper / white beans / red lentils / diced tomato / veggie broth.

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I didn’t bother to season or brown anything so the end result was a little bland, but topped with melted cheese it was hearty and satisfying.

Three down, four to go.

Weekly Wrap-Up

Loves of Late

Family time: My parents were taking a quick vacation in Philadelphia this week and I took a mini road trip and drove up to spend the day with them!  I love the Magic Garden mosaics.

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TV: Rizzoli and Isles is on it’s final season and we have been loving it.  It is the most unrealistic of the cop shows that I enjoy but it’s also very funny and heartwarming.  All seasons are streaming on Hulu and I highly recommend going back to the beginning and giving it a watch.  Also, the first three episodes of Documentary Now.  Adam and I thought the 1st season went quickly downhill but the very first episodes are comedy gold.

Coffee: the beans we bought at Birch are fantastic, even when brewed in our crappy coffee pot at home.

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Every time I go to Reading Terminal I hit Old City Coffee.

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Also in Philly, I finally tried La Columbe.

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Stuff: My new planner!  I love new planners in general because I’m a dork but this one has shiny cut outs on the front. (from Blue Sky, fyi, but I couldn’t find it listed on the website)

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I also just bought a shirt with cut outs on it, apparently that’s my summer trend.

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The day I visited my parents we walked around the city all day and it was just so darn hot that we ended up buying me a new outfit so I could take the world’s most refreshing shower before dinner.

Eats

Coffee, duh!  More cups than were shown above, obviously.

Terrible picture of the yummy pecan pastries a coworker brought it.  She cut back on sugar which can leave baked goods overly tough but these ended up tasting like a pastry-scone hybrid.

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Yogurt bowl – plain Greek with chopped red plum, granola, chia, and sprinkles.

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Oatmeal bowl – with dark chocolate cacao nibs, chia, and coconut butter.  Plus an apple on the side.

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Chia pudding.  The fizzy coconut water was horrible, btw.

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When in Philly, (chicken) cheesesteak.

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Pocky stick snack.

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Turkey cheese roll ups.

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Dinner at Devon Seafood with my parents.

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I had the bouillabaisse.

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Chipotle night, midweek road trips tire you out.  My burrito was stuffed with chicken, pinto beans, peppers, cheese, sour cream, corn salsa, and lettuce.

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Best for last, the one thing I actually cooked myself!

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White quinoa / red lentils with lemon, tomato paste, and ginger / roasted zucchini and garlic sautéed mushrooms.

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Have a great weekend!

Goodbye, 2014! Weekly Wrap-Up

I cannot believe that it is almost 2015!  Doesn’t it sometimes feel like life is flying by?  I hate the idea of waking up late and tired in a new year, so our big plans for NYE consist of cuddling on the couch and trying to get in bed extra early.

Posting my recap a few days ahead of schedule so I can feel like I wrapped up one final thing…

breakfast

Yummy hot chocolate and an apple.

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After coffee, obviously.  Per usual, I was all about the coffee.

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This giant (I had a freebie) was an iced vanilla latte with extra espresso.

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I have been weirdly obsessed with vanilla all week and it’s making me kind of crazy; I don’t even like vanilla!  You’ll see Greek and frozen vanilla yogurts below, and I’m pretty much going to die if I don’t find pudding this weekend.  Hopefully this craving will pass soon.

lunch

Salted caramel Greek yogurt with coconut butter and an apple on the side.

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Plus a vegan monster cookie sandwich from Babycakes.  <– amaze!

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And some jerky while I did my charting.

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Tuesday I got lunch from the cafeteria that tasted better than it looked.

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A strange Caesar pasta salad (it was chicken and dressing with pasta AND croutons?!) topped with mushrooms and broccoli from the salad bar.

Another day I brought in dinner leftovers.

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Apple on the side; I had SweeTango and Kiku this week and both were great.

snacks

Chocolate!  Some nice (this Coffee & Cream bar from Theo is gritty good),

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and some inedible.

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Sorry, Mom, this Christmas gift was too spicy.

Adam is now as obsessed with this fruit mix as I am.

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But no one is as obsessed with vanilla as I am currently!  Vanilla bean yogurt with some candy cane Oreos crushed in it.

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And vanilla frozen yogurt with sprinkles.

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This was literally the first time I’ve even ever tasted vanilla froyo.  Who orders vanilla?!  But today I looooved it.

dinner

A dinner in three parts – (1) Leftover, cold, spicy cashew chicken straight from the container.

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(2) A tray of roasted green beans with truffle salt.  I have been finding green beans to be particularly buttery tasting lately.

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And finally, (3) a chile relleno from Trader Joe’s.

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The chile looks a little rough but it was so yummy; cheesy without being too heavy.

We went with the TJ’s freezer section the next night as well.

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Pad See Ew and orange chicken with broccoli.

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We wouldn’t get the chicken again, but years ago we had the vegan version of it and loved it.

Tonight we were supposed to eat lentils with broccoli and coconut rice.

DSC04742That bowl is in the garbage.  Apparently I have forgotten how to cook lentils that don’t taste like dirt.  It looks like I’ll be ending the year with take-out instead.

Happy New Year’s Eve!!

Three Day Weekend Wrap-Up

I give the last three days an A+!  I had a very inconveniently timed doctor’s appointment on Friday and it made more sense to take a vacation day than try to fit the travel time into a work day.  Serendipitously, Adam had switched some shifts with a coworker who was going to a wedding and he had most of the three off as well.  Yippee!

I’m going to do this post old school, stream of consciousness style, though there are some holes as this definitely does not show every single thing that I ate…

Friday, once I had finished up with the dermatologist and Adam had rested up from his overnight shift, we headed into Manhattan.

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Our destination was Krispy Kreme, and these limited edition Ghostbusters donuts.

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I ain’t afraid of no donut!  They were filled with marshmallow crème and were actually kind of amazing; maybe my favorite donuts I’ve ever tasted.

We wandered around Penn Station, then did lunch in Koreatown.  We had a(n impulse-bought) Groupon for food and booze at Boss Lounge.

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I ordered a Pinch Me, which had Grey Goose, lychee, and grenadine.

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Adam and I shared a kimichi and cheese roll.

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As well as seaweed and tofu salad.

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The tofu was silken and strangely sweet.  The husband loved it.

Afterwards we explored Koreatown a bit more.  We split a kimchi bun from a food court we want to go back to asap.

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Tried whatever the heck this was?!

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The top is mango and red bean but we couldn’t identify the white – chewy and gelatinous – stuff.  Neither of us could bring ourselves to swallow it!

And had a coffee popsicle from Tous les Jours for dessert.

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Every single thing we’ve tried from TlJ has been awesome.  Adam took home cheese buns that he adored and I’m kicking myself for not buying a milk bun.

For dinner, we made our way over to Hardings’s.

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Whiskey sour made with fresh lime, cane sugar, and egg whites!

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Adam had yummy, crispy salmon and I did a fun combo of appetizers.

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Pumpkin pie soup with spiced whipped cream.

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And kale salad with chickpeas, Marcona almonds, shaved sunchokes, and lemon vinaigrette.

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Ahaha, I didn’t realize until I reread the menu to write this post that those white shreds were sunchokes and not really stale parmesan.

Afterwards we trained it over to Lexington (and Dylan’s Candy!), then walked back to our car across the Queensboro Bridge.  It was a lovely nighttime walk but my calves are sooooo sore now!

We were parked in Long Island City and we stopped at The Baroness for a nightcap on the way.

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We want to go back for a cheese plate immediately, but for now we shared a cute beer sampler.

Saturday was supposed to be spent at Smorgasburg, but yucky, rainy weather scared us back to Long Island.  Instead we ran local errands – groceries were shopped and both of our cars now have changed oil.

We had baked potatoes for brunch.

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I swear that there is a potato under there.  Topped with butter, sharp cheddar, turkey bacon, leftover kale salad, jalopeño, sour cream, and a fried egg.

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We poked the yolks into our buttered potatoes and it was pretty great.

We spent the evening cuddled on the couch with GIANT plates of nachos.  I also ate this licorice mix.

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We are now completely caught up on new fall tv.  The Chicago’s (PD and Fire) are my favorite so far.

We had more to-do’s to check off on Sunday, and headed back into the city so I could buy a winter coat.

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Train fuel = toasted everything bagel with jalopeño-cheddar cream cheese.

We considered getting Chobani but the line was too crazy, so instead we got froyo.  Pumpkin pie and praline topped with caramel, toffee, Butterfinger, yogurt chips, and mochi.

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Our bowls were tasty, and even better, free.  The last time I was at Yogurtland I was a hot mess and I dropped my credit card into my yogurt and the cashier felt so bad for me that he gave me a handful of vouchers for free yogurt.

I had several coffee this weekend (duh!), but the best was actually from 7-11.

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Cinnamon coffee with pumpkin pie creamer and a sprinkle of cinnamon.

I ate fruit salad while I prepped a batch for the upcoming week.

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And we made big, hearty bowls for dinner.

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Sprouted red jasmine rice // frozen spinach sautéed with bbq sauce, browned mushrooms and tons of onions // red lentils cooked with cumin, turmeric, smoked paprika, curry powder, and more sautéed onion // sour cream and Sriracha on top.

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We ate our warm meal while we worked on the winter-y activity of swapping out our summer wardrobes.  I still don’t have a ton of cold weather gear but I am excited to have my boots back out.

Back in the “old days,” blog posts always ended with a question:

Have you swapped out your summer and winter wardrobes yet?

10 Things

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Long time no see!  My mini posting hiatus was not for lack of things to blather about.  The husband had a full day off on Saturday and we like to make the most of our time mooning at each other and eating mass amounts of cheese so I didn’t take any photos.  Then I spent Sunday eating more cheese and watching a truly horrifying amount of Netflix (more on that below!).

I picked ten things to share for this post, ranging from product reviews and beauty (ha!), to entertainment, to foodie.

{1} Let’s start with the best meal of the week, the best meal of the whole year, actually.

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Runner & Stone, down in the burgeoning area on 3rd Ave in Park Slope, is officially my new favorite restaurant.

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The space and the menu were beautiful and thoughtfully done.  The dishes are not too pricy, but this meal felt luxurious.  I don’t remember what was in this amuse-bouche, but it was complimentary and tasty.

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As was the house-made bread and butter.

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We started dinner with a round of drinks.  Vodka soda – with Industry Standard, a Brooklyn-distilled vodka – for me and a Gowanus – aka an extra dirty martini – for Adam.

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He went with two small dishes for dinner.  White bean soup with sherry,

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and the deconstructed duck pastrami.

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Both were delicious, but my dish totally stole the show.

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Rye pappardelle with smoked salmon, dill, and house-made crème fraiche.  I loved how playful this was, and more importantly, how tasty.

We obviously had to try dessert.

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An orange wine with their buckwheat tres leches.

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Runner & Stone, we’ll be back!  Soon!

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We ended our date night by stopping in at some of our favorite Brooklyn haunts for drinks, as well as dessert round 2 at Ample Hills.  What a night!

{2} I’ll be less verbose about items 2 – 10, but that doesn’t mean they’re any less exciting.  This homemade dinner looks God-awful, but it really was wonderful.  TJ’s Sprouted Red Jasmine Rice with curried lentils and Jenna’s Baingan Bharta, topped with plain yogurt and Sriracha.

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I didn’t love the eggplant – apparently I really do dislike garam masala – but I used to think that I hated lentils and I was pleasantly surprised by them.  I usually make lentils just to be nice to Adam, but now I want to make them again for my taste buds too.  They were soooo easy; we just simmered red lentils with water and a little salt, curry powder, turmeric, and smoked paprika.

{3} Another dinner success.

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Arugula blend salad with cave-aged blue cheese, sweet and spicy pecans, and a maple vinaigrette,

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topped with a Shallotta Salmon Burger.

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I had big plans for a salmon burger and egg sandwich but apparently the patties were pretty good because by the time I went to make my eggwich Adam had eaten them all up.

{4} This item involves a generous box of free samples from Numi Organic Tea and Nutiva.

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As I said, these items were provided free of charge.  I was no provided further compensation for this post.  All opinions are my own.

They’ve teamed up to promote their genius mash-up recipe idea: chia iced tea.  Sounds good, right?  I haven’t actually tried the recipe yet – I’m getting on that this weekend – but I wanted to share it with y’all, along with my thoughts about the products in general.

Iced Tea + Lemonade and Chia Seeds

  • 1/2 tsp. Nutiva Organic Black Chia Seeds
  • 2 Tbsp. water, room temperature
  • 1 Numi Organic Tea – Breakfast Blend black tea bag
  • ½ cup water, boiling ½ cup lemonade Ice cubes
  • Lemon slices
  1. Add chia seeds to 2 tbsp. of room temperature water. Stir to combine, and set aside for 5 minutes, until chia soften. 
  2. Meanwhile, bring ½ cup of water to boil.  Steep tea bag in hot water for 5 minutes. 
  3. Discard tea bag and pour tea into a tall glass. Add lemonade and chia seeds and stir to combine. 
  4. Top with ice, garnish with a lemon wedge and serve. 

So far for the teas, I’ve only tried the Breakfast Blend so far.  The mint is definitely up next once I’ve thinned out my tea bag stash a bit; it smells insanely delicious.

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I can’t say that I adored it, but I have been hating most hot teas.  I’m excited to try it iced, a much better test for me.

Chia seeds are always fun.  I used the black variety in one of my favorite smoothies.

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1.5 Tbsp chia seeds + 1.5 cups frozen strawberries + 1.5 cups lemonade.

And the O’Coconut Snacks are great.

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They’re basically macaroons, with chia and hemp for extra flavor.

{5} Speaking of coconut, I made coconut iced coffee that rocked my face off.

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Cold brew with TJ’s coconut water and a big glug of Almond Joy coffee creamer.  Gah!

{6} A killer alcoholic beverage.  My strategy of choosing booze that sounds like dessert has never served me wrong.

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Does honey beer even need more explanation?

{7} Another product review.

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See disclaimer above.  Free item.  No other $ exchanged.  All my opinion.  Yada, yada.

Valentia sent me their Even Glow Vitamin C Serum (sold exclusively on Amazon).  I have basically no makeup or skin care regimen – no wrinkle cream, no foundation, and I guiltily put sunblock on once or twice a month – so I am not the best judge, but I was a fan.  The serum smells like lemon meringue pie!  I haven’t used it long enough to discern any long-term, wrinkle-busting effects, but day-to-day it makes my skin look a bit glowy.  Photo-evidence straight out of bed, 5 minutes after application, prior to putting on mascara or brushing my teeth.

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Speaking of terrible selfies… I need to show you guys my hair.  My hair has been a hot mess ever since I dyed the whole thing brown after the purple to gray debacle.  It looked like it could be my natural color and was just inexplicably damaged.  I figured if I went blonde(ish) at least the damage would seem less sad.  So I went in for some highlights/ombre.

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I love it!  I couldn’t get a great picture but this is definitely an improvement.

{8} While we’re taking about hair… Who saw season 1 of “The Killing?”  Linden’s 90’s style, face-framing wisp bangs drove me freaking crazy!  In spite of my ceaseless Facebook ranting about the bangs, over the past week I’ve Netflixed my way through almost all 4 seasons.  I haaaaaated the season 3 finale but I’m hoping they fix things up in the Netflix-exclusive final 6 episodes.  Also, I’m thrilled that Jewel Staite makes some appearances, but she has rocked as both a badass space cowboy/mechanic and badass space doctor, why have all of her recent parts been the easy-to-please girlfriend?

{9} I never watched Chelsea Handler’s tv show, but I just started her third book.

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Her stories are hilarious.  The books are kind of terrible for my commute because I feel bad laughing so loudly on the LIRR.

{10} It’s Apple Month!!!  I’ve got a round-up post of important apple products headed your way tomorrow.  And yes, I’ve already started my pumpkin beer collection.

Do you think you’ve eaten your best meal of 2014 yet, or is it coming up this holiday season? 

Weekly Wrap-Up; Lots Of Leftovers

You saw most of this week’s eats yesterday, so this post is just to fill in the gaps.  What you’re not seeing – the coffee.  I was terrible about bedtime this week and the result was constant coffee consumption.  This work week ended up being particularly busy, so it was serendipitous that I was extra-caffeinated.

snacks

Numi Cardamom Pu-erh Tea with skim milk.

DSC07413Valentine’s style Junior Mints.

DSC07375Junior Mints are my favorite chocolate candy, second only to York and Pep bars, and these were shaped like freaking hearts!  Too exciting.

Popcorn with caramel and turkey bacon.

DSC07298Does that goodness need more explanation?

stuff I didn’t cook

Brunch at Biscuits and BBQ.

DSC07307DSC07299Adam went super Southern with chicken and waffles,

DSC07300while I got the bbq chicken sandwich.

DSC07303It was good, but I was expecting the meat to be pulled and smothered and I probably would have ordered differently if I’d known it wasn’t.  At least the serving was giant; Adam ate my 2nd half for lunch the next day.

We were mostly there for dessert anyway.  I read a review in the Times that said Biscuits and BBQ had some of the best key lime pie the reviewer had ever tasted.

DSC07305Yep.  Key lime pie is my favorite dessert and this was definitely one of the best slices I’ve had.  The only way it could have been better is if the traditional crust was a graham cracker crust – the way my mom makes it – because I like my extra-sweet with a side of extra-sweet!

Sushi take-out from Kisso.

DSC07327I went with two boring, cooked rolls (both with tempura!) but Adam said his chirashi was the best he’s ever had.

leftovers for lunch

Since I made a different recipe each night for my book review, I ended up with lots of leftovers for lunches.  Eating tapenade and tofu egg salad on my lunch break felt fancy!

A packaged lunch.

DSC07336Roasted seaweed.

DSC07338A Strawberry Apple Crusher.

DSC07341And some Bumblebee Spicy Thai Chili Tuna with crackers.

DSC07340I loooove that tuna, it is so flavorful.

An eggless lunch.

DSC07364Leftover eggless egg salad.

DSC07369Scooped with pita chips.

DSC07371With a side of green grapes.

DSC07373Crudités for lunch.

DSC07378Leftover lentil tapenade with celery and baby carrots.

DSC07391A giant honeycrisp.

DSC07385And baby Lindt HELLO bars.

DSC07382a dinner

The night I was left to my own devices in the kitchen I made mac and cheese and trees for dinner.

DSC07428Just a box of this adorable winter shapes mac and cheese with 0% Greek yogurt, smoked paprika, a tin of Bella cayenne pepper smoked sardines, and broccoli roasted with truffle salt.

DSC07408DSC07426Gussied up box macaroni is the best easy dinner.

What’s your go-to order when you’re channeling the deep South?  Adam does chicken and waffles while I like pulled chicken and fried okra.