Chili When It’s Chilly

It was a great week in packaged coffees.  Grady’s Cold Brew = 11/10 (it’s my very favorite!).  P.S. how great are our flowers??!

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Black Hands can = 9/10.

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Blanchard’s can = 7.5/10.

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Other beverage fun included Polar hibiscus cloudberry seltzer.

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And this killer cocktail combo – cinnamon hibiscus tea, Goldschläger, and club soda.

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Snack attack.  Strawberry sage kombucha, a caramel chocolate granola bar, and an Autumn Glory apple.

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Can you believe I didn’t try a Coolhaus ice cream sandwich until after I left New York?  We were super impressed with this.

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Our dinners this week were definitely on a theme.  Chili.  Ground turkey / black beans and baked beans / sweet onion and poblano pepper / tomato paste and crushed tomatoes / clove, cumin, smoked paprika, brown sugar, fish sauce, liquid smoke, and gojuchang.  Topped with cheddar, plain Greek yogurt, and jalopenos.

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Bacon and cheese wrapped hot dogs.  Turkey hot dogs and halloumi cheese wrapped in turkey bacon on a whole-wheat bun with ketchup.  With a side of green bean fries.

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Bacon chili cheese hot dog casserole.  Double layers of cauliflower rice / turkey bacon / sliced turkey hot dogs / green onion / leftover chili / and sharp cheddar.  Topped with plain Greek yogurt and hot sauce.

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Yum!

All Hallow’s Eats

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Pumpkin Noosa for breakfast.  I sprinkled some crunchy granola from the cafeteria on top and it was fantastic.

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Maple glazed doughnut with a maple pancake iced latte from Sugar Shack.

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Snack attack.  Is it even Halloween week if you don’t make yourself sick eating too much sugar?  None of fun-sized candy at work was exciting to me and I had to drive myself to Wegman’s to buy my own chocolate.

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Crispy honey garlic tofu bites served on top of roasted broccoli and cauliflower.  The tofu recipe was perfect, I couldn’t believe how crispy it came out.  After I took that photo I smothered my plate in Kewpie and Sriracha!

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This Pumking version was toooo much bourbon for me.

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Sweet potato hash success.  Crispy sweet potato (cooked similarly to this method) / sauteed red bell pepper and spring onion with tumeric and smoked paprika / garlic chicken sausage / topped with a fried egg / and copious amounts of Cholula hot sauce.

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Our Halloween dinner was perfectly on theme – vampire killer pumpkin pasta.  Pumpkin shaped pasta / garlic chicken sausage / sauteed spinach with tons of garlic / tossed in aioli / topped with pan-fried haloumi.

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Plus the best pumpkin beer of the year and a chai pumpkin ale.

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Flavors Of Fall

Next week is the start of Pumpkin Month!!  But first, here’s a collection of “fall flavored” things –

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The maple Mars bar was a disappointment.  (Mom, sorry, it came as part of a Snack Crate, I cannot get you one).

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But the pecan pie granola was a delight, especially paired with a Trader Joe’s caramel apple Greek yogurt!

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More apple goodness, this Rave variety was crispy and sweet.

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And in other packaged goods new, I obsessively searched for this Oreo coffee creamer for the past 2 months before I finally got my hands on it.  <– worth it

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Pimento cheese and crackers at Grit.

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I put leftover bbq chicken on a yummy salad.  With butter lettuce, honey mustard dressing, cashews, and cucumber.

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This frozen meal from Trader Joe’s remains the best chile relleno of my life.

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My in-laws were in town a few days this week and we had a great time seeing them.  Including a trip to Asian buffet.  I had really tasty seaweed salad and the best egg tart I’ve ever eaten.  Here were my fist and last plates (with several in between!).

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Yum Yums And Cheer

I had some real flops in the dinner department this week, and I don’t photograph my work lunches, so most of what I have to share in this post is dessert!

I tried chocolate oat milk in my iced coffee and I didn’t totally hate it.

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Wegman’s coffee counter shopping treat, salted caramel cold foam iced latte.  Cold foam gets two thumbs up from me, I would get it again on an unflavored latte.

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The cookie butter flavor at Red Mango is hands down the best frozen yogurt I’ve ever tasted!  Topped with mochi and butterscotch chips.

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Homemade tahini cookies stuffed with m&ms.  A riff on this recipe because No. 2 Pencil’s cookie recipes are all genius.

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Chipotle salads are my favorite restaurant meal at the moment and I’m not even ashamed about it.  My perfect combo = greens, chicken, extra fajita veggies, corn salsa, hot salsa, sour cream, and cheese.  Eaten at home with a super tasty Dogfish Head Dragon and Yum Yums beer.

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This salad was a homemade dinner success!  Sauteed broccoli slaw / shredded chicken breast / toasted almond slivers / a food processed sauce of cilantro, parsley, orange juice, lime juice, evoo, honey, and rice vinegar.

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Apple Adventures

Nothing this week has been as exciting as our food in New York, but I have had some fun eating through my apple month stash.  Here were some recent highlights…

Coffee from Brooklyn Roasting Company.

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Caramel + Apple Noosa.  <– Noosa is always tasty but this would have been a billion times better if the two flavors were just mixed together and not “split” side by side

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Apple chips with chocolate peanut butter dip.

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Freeze-dried apples.

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This week’s trail mix obsession was homemade – dried apples, yogurt covered pretzels, roasted peanuts, and honey roasted peanuts.

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I made chilaquiles(ish) for dinner.  Sauteed yellow and orange bell pepper with green salsa, cotija, and tortilla chips, topped with a fried egg and Cholula.  This was so good I ate leftovers the next day and they were still yummy.

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Greek(ish) salad night.  Baby romaine, ranch, olives, adorably tiny baby heirloom tomatoes, roasted chickpeas, and dolmas.

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New York, New York

Adam and I drove to New York for a fantastic weekend visit!

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We did tons of city walking punctuated by coffees and ice creams // Brunched with friends at Vinegar Hill House // Tried a new place for dinner on Saturday that was just terrible and ended up having the best night ever getting a variety of things from DeKalb Market and eating in bed in front of Chopped //  Bought coffee and halvah to bring home to Charlottesville…

Also, I didn’t snap a picture, but we shared a a baklava croissant from Cafe D’Avignon that was the best thing I ate the whole trip month!

Here were five highlights…

{1}  Maple Shay from Brooklyn Roasting Co.  Espresso (four shots for me!) with ice, milk, and maple syrup.

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{2}  An iced latte from Terremoto, with housemade rose syrup.

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{3}  Drinks from Ramona in Greenpoint.  We had a frozen mango Thai iced tea with coconut whipped cream and “The Harpooned Heart” – vodka, coconut, almond, vanilla, mint, lime, pineapple, and peppercorn bitters.

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{4}  Big Gay Ice Cream.  I got vanilla soft serve, in a cone lined with Biscoff, topped with dulce de leche, and coated in sprinkles.  It was out of this world.  The sprinkles were the best part, the best I’ve ever tasted.

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{5}  The Little Mule combo from Chef’s Club Counter.  It was white american cheese, cotija cheese, pickled jalopenos, fried egg, and chipotle mayo.  Served on an Impossible Burger.  We kind of swooned over it.

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What I Wish I Was Eating

I didn’t do the best job of photo taking this week, so instead let’s talk about food a bit.  For funsies, 10 items I’ve been obsessing about recently –

  1. coffee – always
  2. plucots – I feel like my summer season of plum eating was way too short this year, I didn’t eat a single dinosaur plucot
  3. Insomnia Cookie – we’ve been getting cookie delivery way too often recently!  But their s’mores cookie is chewy and loaded with marshmallows and I’m smitten
  4. grilled romaine lettuce – my aunt served this last weekend and it was mind-blowingly good
  5. chicken and waffles – I need to go back to Mother’s Ruin for their Cholula glazed version asap
  6. bubble tea – this winter I think I want to try to make an eggnog with boba happen
  7. cheesecake – I haven’t actually eaten cheesecake in months and months but it keeps popping up in my online scrolling and always sounds so delicious!
  8. okonomiyaki – I haven’t been able to get my Americanized version out of my mind
  9. cookie butter frozen yogurt – we had some last week at Red Mango (with mochi and cookie butter drizzle!) that was just fantastic
  10. homemade ice cream – another item that’s been dominating my online reading, mostly because Stella Parks keeps being the best at what she does

And here were the highlights of what I’ve actually been eating…

Coffee for the week = TJ’s French Roast.

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I’m still having a moment with trail mix, I seriously eat at least one bag a day!  I guess that probably should have been on my obsessions list!

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Other snack specials included this new flavor of Luna Bar.

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And really tasty french onion dip my aunt sent home with us.

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The most exciting thing on earth, however, is that they sent us home with crab cakes!!  Eaten with roasted brussel sprout and aioli.

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I made a great casserole.  Shredded chicken, black beans, cauliflower rice, onion, bell peppers, and green salsa, topped with an amazing tortilla chip and cojita cheese crumble.

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What foods have you been obsessing about recently?