All By Myself

<– that title is facetious, I’m actually living with my cousin and her fiance and they are taking very good care of me!  But this was my first week surviving solo without Adam and Webster.  On a related note, look at the stickers I just bought!!!

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We had a fantastic, fantasmic, over-the-top wonderful vacation, by the way!  We hung out with some of our favorite people, ate some of our favorite things, and got to walk up and down the beach fifteen times, all the while exclaiming how beautiful the water was.

I brought back the best ever cold brew (Grady’s) from New York.

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Plus my new favorite cup, from St. Thomas!

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I got back to Charlottesville from New York on Sunday night so I didn’t have time for a grocery trip this week which meant I mostly ate a bunch of (tasty) nonsense.  Like cafeteria food that I carted home.  Chicken tenders + fries + seaweed salad.

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A Beyond Burger with hot sauce and tomatoes.

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And Wegman’s hot bar.  I pretty much got every chicken and vegetable option from the “Asian” section.

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One night my cousin threw a dinner party and cooked an honest-to-god, grown up meal – eggplant parmesan and garlic bread (plus a fancy cheese plate and homemade chocolate chip cookies).

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And Thursday I finally made it to free pretzel night at Hardywood because my work hosted an after-hours journal club there.

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Convenience Foods And Cocktails

It was not a super exciting weekend for me – Adam was out of town and I worked on Sunday.  I spent my single day off on errands and chores around the house.  On the meal front I was all about snacks, convenience foods, and cocktails.

Highlights…

Iced coffee with vanilla bean powder.

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Perfect Bar comes in cookie dough flavor!! <– I’m not sure if this flavor is very old or very new but oddly I cannot find a single mention of it on their site or the internet in general

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Polar unicorn kisses seltzer.  I am obsessed with these fantasy-themed mini cans.

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Am I determined to try every existing variety of pimento cheese before I leave the South?  Yes.  Northerners, take note – this variety from Trader Joe’s is not very good; pimento dip should not be homogeneous but should have individual shreds of cheese.

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On the other hand, these (vegan!) mini marshmallows are vanilla-y perfection.

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Still in love with these chicken and waffle chips.

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Spicy ramen + agua fresca cerveza.

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A not very good frozen meal + a quite good rum and coke (with Vitae golden rum and tons of fresh lime).

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Snack Assist

Serendipitously, on a week when my meal plan was absolutely anemic, I received an awesome box of goodies from deliciousness.com.  <– samples were provided to me free of charge but with no additional compensation, all opinions are my own

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CrrrunchBites Chili Lime Almonds.  It’s an almond, wrapped in a rice cracker, coated in seasoning.  They were crunchy and tasty (and not too spicy for Adam).  Very satisfying to snack on (though I also could have easily kept eating the whole bag!)  They’re vegan and gluten-free and there was nothing on the ingredients list that concerned me.

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Mozaics Popped Veggie Chips.  They are gluten-free, vegan, and primarily made of peas!  BBQ was good but Salsa was great; once again, flavorful without being too spicy or too salty.  The chips are popped instead of fried so a 1 oz/23 chip serving only has 100 calories and thanks to the peas each serving contains 3 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber.

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Hope & Sesame sesame milks.  I think these fill a really big hole in the plant-based milk market!  The products are all vegan (and therefore dairy-free and lactose-free), soy-free, and gluten-free, and except for the chocolate-hazelnut flavor they are tree-nut-free.  A 1 cup serving has 8 grams of protein – just like cow’s milk, which is awesome because the low-protein content is my main concern about most alternative milks.  Plus they are creamy and taste like sesame.  We liked vanilla straight from the carton but hated it in coffee and loved the chocolate hazelnut all-round – in a cup of strong coffee the chocolate didn’t come through much but it was creamy without separating and left you with coffee’s roastiness but none of the acidity.

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Highlights from the week include…

Coffee coffee.

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Mango beer line-up.  The sour wasn’t worth finishing but we enjoyed the IPA.

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We finally saw End Game!  We loooooooved it.  I laughed, cried, and enjoyed the heck out of Captain America and Captain Marvel’s uniform-clad behinds.  Our movie snacks weren’t bad either.

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Sandwich night.  We made simple sandwiches that were terrifically good – Trader Joe’s white whole wheat bread (untoasted), smoked turkey, havarti cheese, and mayo and yellow mustard.  Plus baby carrots and Salsa Mozaic Chips.

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Salad night.  These were the best salads I’ve made all year.  Sweet lettuce with Greek feta dressing / Mexican street corn salad / chili lime almonds / heirloom baby tomatoes / hot-smoked salmon.

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Peanut Butter, Chocolate, And Coffee

I took a long weekend, hence the extra-late post.  Adam takes attending call in a nearby town once a month and this time I tagged along!  I went out for lattes at an adorable coffee shop, had truly fantastic Thai food, and got a flight at a local brewery (complete with a margarita flavored Radler served with lime and a sugar rim!), but mostly I hung out at the hotel room so I had to pack the essentials.

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You know, “the essentials,” peanut butter, chocolate, and coffee.

More on that peanut butter – B.Nutty offered to send me some samples and I jumped at the opportunity because, holy crap, white chocolate pretzel peanut butter!!  They also sent me Totally Toffee – made with honey roasted peanuts, toffee, milk chocolate, and almonds – and Blissful Blueberry – with blueberry and milk chocolate.  I haven’t opened the berry one yet but the toffee and pretzel flavors are both 10/10 delicious.

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All flavors are gluten-free (including the pretzel one) and trans fat-free.  I can’t stop eating them by the spoonful!

Also they’ve made great additions to snack plates and yogurt bowls.  Honeycrisp apple / cucumber / baby carrot / B.Nutty irresistible pretzel.

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Plain greek yogurt / blackberries / granola / B.Nutty totally toffee.  That’s Thai tea in the back.

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Other snack wins include… mocktails with club soda and bitters.

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This Peeps cereal that tastes like a bowl of straight up marshmallows.

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I don’t usually photograph the stuff I eat at work but I made an exception because this bbq Love Corn was so tasty.

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A whole set of Trader Joe’s wins – vegan jackfruit crabless cakes and bbq popped chips with roasted broccoli and homemade chili oil aioli.

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Have a great week!

 

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Strawberry Guava Passionfruit Mango Banana Pineapple Coconut Plum

There was not much excitement around here this weekend, Adam was out of town and I worked a Sunday coverage shift at work (and it was a particularly long and harrowing day!) – I mostly ate frozen meals and snack foods.  Here were the highlights…

How many drinks do I need to pack for a weekend work day?  Unsurprisingly, I’m a pretty big fan of the new strawberry guava diet coke.

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I tried the new cinnamon shortbread latte from Starbucks (with half syrup and double espresso), it’s pretty good.

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My 1st year working as a teacher in New York I ate about a million protein bars and lately I’ve gotten back on that train.

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Yogurt bowl wins.  Trader Joe’s guava passion fruit whole milk Greek yogurt (it’s amazing!) with sliced mango and TJ’s freeze-dried banana slices.

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Wallaby caramelized pineapple Aussie creme yogurt with chopped black plum and shredded coconut.

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Spicy shrimp tempura sushi from Whole Foods.

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Kashi Mayan Harvest bowl. 7/10 on the frozen meal scale.

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Red’s chicken and Mexican street corn (8.5/10).  Severe with roasted broccoli.  That whole plate got topped with copious amounts of Kewpie and Sriracha.

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7 For 7

Long time no blog!  Here were 7 highlights from the past 7 days…

{1} This chocolate chip cookie dough chia bar is quite tasty.  With a pinata apple.

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{2} We finally went to Paradox Pastry and now it’s my new favorite place.  The nutella hand pie and birthday cake macaron we shared were out of this world delicious and I wanted to try pretty much every item on the menu.

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{3} We went on a crepe date at The Flat.

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Shredded chicken with brie and local Jams by Daniel.

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The Owl Man = milk chocolate, cinnamon, and marshmallow fluff.

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{4} My mom sent some Rothschild Farms raspberry honey mustard dip in my stocking this year and it’s like snacking on my childhood.  Pretzels for dipping are nonnegotiable but baby carrots aren’t bad either.

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{5} Dinner bowl #1 – Stir-fried cauliflower rice (with soy sauce, rice vinegar, cashews, and eggs) with Trader Joe’s Mandarin orange chicken-less morsels.

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{6} Dinner bowl #2 – Broccoli rice and shredded carrots stir-fried with zhoug sauce // honey garlic chicken thighs – thighs, garlic, honey, and soy sauce put in the crock pot on low for 8 hours // bok choy sauteed in some extra sauce // a fried egg.

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{7} My cousin introduced us to Peter Chang’s.  We had sweet glutinous rice cakes and I had numbing shredded duck.  Szechuan chili is such a fun spice sensation.

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I hope everyone has a great weekend!

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Double Bacon Cheese Beyond Burgers

My trip home last weekend was perfect and we survived “Winter Storm Gia” this weekend… 2019 is looking like my year.

Highlights from week 2 include…

Iced coffee with black walnut extract and sweet cream creamer.

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Stumptown cold brew coffee box.

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Who knew that Perfect Bars were so freaking delicious?!  This peanut butter chocolate chip one was basically cookie dough.

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Stonyfield chocolate yogurt pouch (7/10), a Kiku apple (8/10), and a chocolate peanut butter filled Clif bar (9.5/10).

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I brought these yummy coconut candies back from St. Thomas.

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Shiner S’more is officially my new favorite beer.

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Guzzled while assembling everything but the kitchen sink cookies with caramel, kettle chips, toffee bits, caramel chips, and chocolate chips.

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This quickie packaged foods dinner was sooo good.  Chicken and cheese pupusas + bbq chicken chips + roasted broccoli + Trader Joe’s Zhoug sauce.

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I have an unhealthy obsession with the “Asian” section of Wegman’s hot bar.

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We made insanely, over-the-top, decadent double cheese burgers with Beyond Burger patties.

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Two patties on a brioche bun with mayo, turkey bacon, and smoked cheddar slices.  Plus kettle chips and veggies from the Whole Foods’ hot bar – curry caulilini and roasted rainbow carrots, mushrooms, and root vegetables.

img_3144Then later in the week we did a similar thing with Boca Chick’n patties.

 

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We made killer sheet pan hash browns.  Potato, sweet potato, purple sweet potato, olive oil, smoked paprika, green onion, turkey bacon, and red, yellow, and orange bell pepper.

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Topped with Zhoug and fried eggs.

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