Sour Cream Successes

Big life update – I have a job.  I joined a medical team for nutrition support (at the same hospital that Adam will be working at!).  It’s a fantastic learning opportunity but life has definitely been pretty crazy recently.  Actually, I interviewed for and was offered the position during my notice period at my last job, so things have been pretty crazy for the last month.  Also I started work the day after we moved.  Whew!

Big food updates – here were the highlights the past week…

Coffee combo = espresso from For Five with skim milk and ice.

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Rule Breaker Snacks sent me some cookie samples to try.  Their bean-based treats all have chickpeas as the first ingredient.  The concept is actually really neat, their snacks are all vegan, gluten-free, kosher, and peanut-free -as well as free from the top 8 allergens – so they are a great option for a kid’s lunchbox (or to pack to eat at a hospital!).

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The P’nutter chocolate chip blondie only got a 7/10 from us because the flavor that was similar to peanut but not actually peanut threw us a bit and we found there to be somewhat of a baking soda aftertaste.  If you were someone with a peanut allergy you definitely may feel differently though.

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But the birthday cake blondie was a 10/10!  Truly, rating it just as a cookie and not a “healthy” cookie, I loved it.  It just tasted like a really yummy sugar cookie.  The sprinkles were super fun and didn’t have a chalky taste.  And the texture of both bars was perfection – chewy without being crumbly.  You would have no idea that either flavor was bean-based.

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I get subsidized meals at the hospital cafeteria so I mostly will be eating lunches there and will have less to share on that front, though this week I did eat three (incredible!) lunches at my desk and was able to take a picture.  Salad with marinated mushrooms, chickpea salad, celery, grapes, and honey mustard dressing.

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Salad with mushrooms, salmon, banana peppers, and blue cheese dressing.

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Turkey burger with cheddar, blue cheese, red onion, and pickles.  Plus pita chips.

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We finally got ourselves some pans and to celebrate I made some reeeeeally good dinners.  Key note – I put Trader Joe’s low-fat sour cream in everything we ate this week and everything was fantastic so I think I will start keeping sour cream in stock more often.

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Esquites – loosely following this recipe – aka the best dish I’ve ever made.  I swapped serrano for jalopeno and used half mayo and half sour cream.

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With baked shrimp and cabbage.  I marinated the shrimp with evoo, paprika, cumin, lemon juice, and tomato paste and baked it on top of shredded cabbage.

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A hot take (<– that’s a pun!) on my black eyed pea salad.  Sauteed red, orange, yellow, and green bell pepper and green onions / salt, pepper, smoked paprika / BEP / turkey bacon / cubes of cheddar / mayo and sour cream / topped with Cholula.

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Stroganoff-ish turkey.  With tons of sauteed mushrooms and roasted heirloom cherry tomatoes.

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One night we had a tasty meal out at Mono Loco.  Fresh grapefruit mojito with Cruzan rum!

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And I got nachos with pinto beans and crazy good roasted chicken.

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Snack highlights this week were ice cream!  Whole Food’s vegan peanut butter chocolate bar(!!) topped with cardamom ice cream and strawberry sprinkles.

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Scoops of tres leches and cream cheese from La Flor Michoacana.

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Have a great weekend!

Salads In C-Ville

We moved!  I officially live in Virginia now.

The move itself was kind of terrible but we made it here intact with the dog and most of our stuff so I really can’t complain.  And first we took a fabulous trip home to St. Thomas!  Complete with highlights of the best banana daiquiri on earth and salmon pattys eaten in the airport with a vodka soda and local beer.

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Post-move, once the apartment was sort of set up, I focused on the really important stuff like finding all of the nearby beverage and dessert options.  Like La Flor Michoacana – a Mexican dessert place with the most exciting menu I’ve seen in my entire life.  I already had a scoop of soursop ice cream (with a scoop of mamey on the bottom)!

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And an eggnog paleta.

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Sweethaus for a quad iced latte and a crazy good salted caramel cupcake.  <– maybe the best frosting of my life.

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Grit for Cuban coffee.

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Also I loved this locally made fresh mint kombucha.

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On the food-food side I don’t have much to share because I’ve done zero cooking both due to being busy and having not moved any of our pots or pans.  We’ve mostly been eating junky take-out, and salads at home, and take-out salads.  Sweet baby lettuce blend / poppy seed dressing / strawberries / shredded chicken.

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Spring mix and herbs / Trader Joe’s sesame soy ginger vinaigrette / shredded chicken / roasted peanuts.

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From Fuzzy Taco – romaine / tomato / onion / fajita veggies / grilled fish / shredded cheese / tortilla strips / vinaigrette.

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From Roots Natural Kitchen – Arcadian mix / charred corn / pickled onion / roasted broccoli / hard-boiled egg / bbq tofu / cilantro lime dressing.

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Wish me luck exploring!

Coffee, Fried Chicken, And Ice Cream

So many things have been happening since I last posted, which is funny because life is going to be a a billion times busier the next few weeks.

My last day of work was wonderful.  I did end up doing patient care up to the very end – updating some enteral feeds for fluid restrictions, completing a palliative consult, troubleshooting a feeding tube that kept clogging.  My coworkers continued to be the sweetest and one of my friends even walked me to the door at the end of the day!  Then I met up with a friend from Buffalo for a final round of after-work drinks at Grand Army, which was perfect.

My parents were in town for the weekend and we had a great time doing fun city things with them. Plus we took a friend on a final foodie tour of the Lower East Side.

Adam “graduated” from residency and our families spent an afternoon celebrating what a smart, motivated, bad ass he is.

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And today I am on my way home to St. Thomas for a short vacation before the move.  Related update – we planned things out in a sort of ridiculous way and the moving process is going to be completely insane.  This will be the last time you’ll hear from me for a week or two because I’m not even going to attempt blogging while we try to get everything else done.

Before “good bye, for now,” the weekend eats highlights! Flavor themes were coffee, fried chicken, and ice cream…

Iced latte from Black Brick.

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Iced latte from Brooklyn Roasting Co.

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Rose milk tea with *baby boba* from Pa Tea.

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Scoops from Ice & Vice. Soursop pina colada and lemon poppyseed.

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Sprinkles and strawberry jam ice creams from Odd Fellows.

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I made tres leches cake for the party.

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A final round of spiceland bao (and fried fish!) from Baohaus.

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Dinner at Sundays in Brooklyn. I had a spicy grapefruit cocktail.

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And spicy togarashi fried chicken.

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Plus we shared a ton of delicious appetizers. Freshmade sourdough bread and beer butter plus Alpine cheese with kumquat jam. Black lentil dip with edible flowers and cultured buttermilk and flatbread. Crispy maitake mushrooms.

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See you soon!

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Tasty Things

Tasty things from this week…

Mango in plain Greek is my latest favorite yogurt combo.  This bowl had nectarine in it, which was fantastic as well.

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Some of my favorite coworkers and I went out for a goodbye lunch at Dekalb Market Hall and I had great tacos.  Mushroom and corn / smoked crab.

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I finally got my hands on this new Reese’s Pieces bar and it was outrageously fantastic.

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For almost a week I had been having an oddly specific craving for rotisserie chicken and butter lettuce and this strangely topped salad was everything I was hoping for – spinach and butter lettuce mix dressed with evoo, salt, and sumac / warm, shredded, rotisserie chicken / pine nuts / sriracha and kewpie mayo.

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We made chilaquiles nachos.  Tortilla chips, roasted salsa, cheese, shredded chicken and sauteed onion and bell pepper baked with an egg on top.

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Brigadero, Beer, BBQ

I had a good New York weekend, one of a dwindling few remaining before the move!  Saturday, a girlfriend and I met near South Street Seaport for croissants, walked across the Brooklyn Bridge, then spent the afternoon in Brooklyn for drinks and dinner.

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Here were my top nine, three per day for a three day weekend…

{1}  Iced latte from Everyman Espresso.  I walked down from Penn Station to the Seaport and the iced beverage was sooo necessary.

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{2}  It kind of makes me feel like an asshole, but the frozen coffee from Stew Leonard’s is one of my very favorite things.

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{3}  Croissants from Cafe Patoro.  Mine was stuffed with brigadero, aka condensed milk chocolate.

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{4}  Dessert bars from Hometown Bake Shop.  Key lime pie and s’mores.

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{5}  Cocktails at Grand Army.  The specialty drink menu is currently My Little Pony themed!!

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We decided I ordered the best two things on the menu.  Scootaloo – amburana cachaca, passionfruit, cardamom, lime, and orange.

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Pinky Pie – blanco tequila, escubac, aperol, lime, and salt.

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{6}  Pasta at Colonie.  Fazzoletti with blue crab, burrata, sorrel, and serrano chile.

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{7}  BBQ at Old Fields.  I had smoked chicken with smokey bbq sauce, pulled chicken, cole slaw, and a lot of Adam’s corn bread.

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{8}  I made a take on the creamy rice casserole from Eat, Live, Run.  Double the bell pepper, fire roasted ro-tel, and I swapped out shrimp for turkey sausage and red kidney beans.  It was delicious.  Topped with Sriracha and sour cream.

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{9}  Trader Joe’s sour grapefruit ale.

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Have a great week!

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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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My New Favorite Thing

This weekend was all about fancy coffees, restaurant brunches, and yummy home-cooked dinners.

I took a vacation day on Friday – just for funsies – and had lunch with one of my favorite former co-workers and her new baby!  Plus I took myself on a long walk: Penn Station down to Chelsea Market, over to Gramercy Park, and back up to Penn Station.  Saturday I had a literal every cloud has a silver lining situation – the gloomy weather gave me an excuse to wear my snazzy new rain boots!

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Here were the highlights…

Fancy coffees –  Iced latte from Seven Point Espresso.

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Rose iced latte from Terremoto.  <– best coffee of the weekend

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Crack pie latte from Milk Bar.

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Restaurant brunches – MeMe’s Diner.

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The O.C. = cara cara and blood orange, tequila, and Tang.

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I ordered the greens with chili oil and a fried chicken biscuit sandwich with spicy maple syrup and root vegetable slaw.  The picture does not do justice to just how gigantic that sandwich is.

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Cake!  I wish I had more photos because this cake is officially my new favorite thing I’ve ever eaten.  Vietnamese iced coffee cake with condensed milk frosting and cocoa cardamom fudge.  Moist cake, fluffy icing, perfectly balanced.

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Midwinter Kitchen.  I had a salad with pistachio crusted goat cheese, frisée, watercress, a sunny side up egg, and sherry vinaigrette.  Those goat cheese balls were out of this world.

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Home-cooked dinners –  Trout salad melts.  Trader Joe’s canned smoked trout with mayo and gojuchang on toast with sharp cheddar.  Plus roasted zucchini with sumac.

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And I had this killer drink line-up while I cooked – creamy mango soda and key lime pie gose.

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Eat Live Run’s green chile crock pot chicken.  I subbed in cauliflower rice to get some more veggies in there.

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Gojuchang turkey burgers on toast, smothered in a tasty sauce – kewpie mayonnaise, honey, dijon, and miso.  With a side of pear slices and chips – gojuchang kettle chips from Whole Foods and kettle popcorn chips from Trader Joe’s.

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Have a great work-week, guys!