Cookie x Cookie

Highlights from another exceptionally tasty week…

A brunch date at Blacksmith’s Breads. I got a vanilla quad iced latte.

And an egg burrito with extra veggies. This was only ok (who puts carrots on a burrito? And it needed way more hot sauce) but Adam’s egg and cheese sandwich was a work of art.

Cookie x cookie coffee wins. I 11/10 loved the Stew Leonard’s cookie dough flavored coffee and also enjoyed the Califa cookie butter almond milk creamer far more than I was expecting to.

Sliced Hunnyz apple (a new favorite) with honey, cinnamon, and chunky peanut butter.

Yogurt bowl with plain skry, vanilla bean paste, honey, persimmon, passionfruit, chia seeds, and vanilla almond granola.

See also, plain skyr with cinnamon, blueberry jam, persimmon, Mineola tangerine, and granola.

We spent an obscene amount of money on Taco Bell delivery for dinner one night so I tried to bring balance back to the Force with a green juice. Lol, unfortunately I grabbed the wrong bottle because this ended up basically being lemonade with aloe and chlorophyll.

We liked these Zapp’s honey mustard pretzels a lot. Not as much as Dot’s but more than their voodoo variety which ended up being too seasoned for us. Also, I use the adjective “jazzy” at least four times a week so clearly I had to buy these.

We loved these Trader Joe’s lentil and chickpea crisps. Great texture.

These Ben & Jerry’s s’mores cookie dough bites are my favorite thing I’ve ever eaten. I love everything about them but the truffles specifically are mind-blowing.

Leftover jalopeno cheddar hushpupies from Sweet Chick with honey and leftover crab dip.

The Burrito Blvd near our apartment has the best toppings; this rice bowl was 40% rice and 60% chopped zuchinni (my ideal burrito bowl ratio). Also chicken, corn, tomato, cheese, and mild salsa.

Homemade laab. I followed this recipe. We quite enjoyed it and were not sad to have sourced toasted rice powder. Plus sauted bok choy with ginger and sesame seeds.

Spicy, tomato-y chickpea bowls. I sauteed graffiti eggplant and sweet onion with fire-roasted diced tomatoes, harissa, and chickpeas. Topped with plain yogurt and fresh mint.

Homemade cashew chicken. I followed this recipe except that I swapped breasts for thighs and added red bell pepper. With brown basmatti rice and roasted broccoli.

P.S. We have exciting dinner reservations tonight for Omakase at Koyo. I’m not bringing my camera but from what I can tell online everything should be gorgeous (and delicious!).

Gojuchang And Reese’s

Some highlights from an exceptionally yummy week! We had some bonkers-good snacks and dinners the past few days…

Sumo mandarins and new Hunnyz apples – perfectly sweet and with a balanced texture, not super crisp but not at all mealy.

Yuzu beverages, both winners. I mixed the High Tide sparkling water with iced matcha and the Lunar hard seltzer with vodka.

Crispy lentils. I loved how roasty these were.

Snack Mates pizza and chicken and waffle flavored meat sticks. These were great.

Strawberry chocolate mochi. This was definitely the best packaged mochi I’ve tried.

The Reese’s Big Cups continue to be the ultimate candy; this new Reese’s Puffs variety was a 10/10. My personal ranking is potato chip > puffs > pretzel. Meanwhile, we liked these so much we bought a box of Puffs and I was very underwhelmed by them in cereal bowl form.

I don’t accept many product samples for the blog these days but this was truly the perfect fit – Prospector Popcorn. The flavors were delicious (the Belgian chocolate toffee was my favorite), they were super fresh, and none of the coatings contain palm oil. We truly loved these and have already ordered more bags with our own money. Huge bonus – this company is a non-profit dedicated to employing people with disabilities (74% of their current workforce).

Korean chicken bowls. Sliced chicken thighs marinated in gojuchang, soy sauce, garlic, and brown sugar and sauted in canola oil. With green onion, sesame seeds, and chopped roasted baby cauliflower.

Salads. Green lettuce with balsamic vinaigrette, crispy lentils, roasted carrots (rainbow baby carrots roasted with butter, evoo, honey, cinnamon, smoked paprika, and urfa pepper), and a fried egg.

Pizza bites (this recipe – we loved it!), garlic turkey meatballs, and roasted romanesco with pizza sauce for dipping.

Pizza-inspired tteokbokki. Rice cakes / roasted cabbage and red onion / green onions / shredded chicken breast / pizza sauce with gojuchang, gochugaru, sugar, evoo, and water / pizza blend shredded cheese.

Oahu 2.0

This week’s eats were like a mini vacation; the highlights were mostly things we brought back from Hawaii!

Coconut creme coffee with coconut cream. The cream was a terrible idea – it was too fatty and it clumped in the cold coffee – but the coffee with plain skim milk was dreamy.

Local jellies.

I made a yogurt bowl with passionfruit butter, banana, and vanilla almond granola.

And a killer drink with guava jelly, vodka, lime, and ginger seltzer.

The last of our 7-11 candy stash. The creamy peach seeds (basically candied peaches with li hing) were my favoite.

I didn’t bring this jelly sake drink back from Hawaii but that is where I discovered them. So thrilled to have found them close to home now too – they are definitely in my top five favorite drinks. They are sweet and fizzy and loaded with jelly (think grass jelly consistency from boba shops).

Finally, this dinner has nothing to do with Hawaii but it was too good not to share. Roasted riced cauliflower / locally made lamb sausage / topping made with deglet dates, pistachio, lemon juice and zest, olive oil, and parsley.

Goodbye, 2022

Adam and I ended the year on a celebratory note with our fifteen year wedding anniversary! I thank my lucky stars everyday – realistically about 20 times a day! – that he’s my person! We had two fun nights that unfortunately I didn’t take a single photo of – at trip to Sundays in Brooklyn for their Snow Days pop-up (including themed cocktails, upscale popcorn, a giant burger, and fantastic roasted honeynut squash) and an evening of pizza take-out and tv in bed (an activity so wonderful I mentioned it in my wedding vows!).

Other highlights from last week included…

Jelly doughnut iced coffee for the last day of Hanukkah. Iced coffee with blueberry preserves and skim milk frothed with cinnamon, cocoa powder, and brown sugar.

Yogurt bowl – plain Greek with kiwi, persimmon, and vanilla almond granola.

Even more exciting than fresh persimmons is the start of citrus season; this Cara Cara was delicious and I also just bought a bunch of Sumos.

Snacks we brought home from Hawaii. Honolulu Cookie Company makes the best shortbread I’ve ever eaten.

Mochi and furikake seasoned popcorn.

Also these vegan gummies my mom put in my stocking were 10/10.

I’ve been seeing this ramen all over Instagram and I had to try it. Even with the addition of Kewpie and an egg it was almost too spicy for me!

A homecooked dinner. Roasted cauliflower and chopped onion / roasted chickpeas / fresh mint / tossed in honey, rice vinegar, and smoked paprika.

Merry And Bright

Highlights from a very festive Christmas weekend…

Peppermint pour-over coffee with egg nog cold foam.

Dalgona iced coffee with eggnog.

Red and green yogurt bowl. Trader Joe’s eggnog Greek yogurt with kiwi, raspberries, and vanilla granola.

Holiday special scoops from Odd Fellows Ice Cream. Buddi’s Spaghetti Sundae – maple ice cream, chocoalte cookie crumbs, mini marshmallows, m&m’s, sno caps, and corn nuts / Moose Nog – egg nog ice cream with fudge swirls and peanut butter cups.

Seasonal brews from Ardent Brewing. The gingerbread was perfect, not too spicy at all, and the Fog Nog is truly my all-time favorite beer/alcoholic beverage/beverage in general. 15/10.

A very close 2nd all-time-favorite is Leyenda’s Candy Striper – a frozen delight with cachaca, coconut, vanilla, lemon, peppermint, maple, and cardamom.

We went to their Sleyenda holiday pop-up for seasonal drinks and a wonderful dinner (it was too dark for photos but my shrimp arepas were amazing). I also had a Reindeer Games with tequilla, cachaca, banana, honey, maple, lemon, pine, and bitters.

Chinese take-out from Blue Wave. I got fantastic veggie stir-fried udon. Also the best scallion pancakes I’ve ever eaten.

Red and green salads. Red leaf lettuce with homemade ranch, red bell pepper, fresh mint, a soft-boiled egg, and a garlic and herb lobster cake (frozen, from Luke’s via Whole Foods).

Red and green rice bowls. Brown rice / sauted bok choy / sourkraut sauted with gojuchang and sugar / soy marinated eggs.

P.S. I am off of work most of this week, which is just lovely! I sipped a fancy coffee while I wrote this post!

(Raise The) Bar Food

Highlights from the past week…

This week’s eggnog plus coffee we brought back from Hawaii.

Sugar cookie kefir from Lifeway. Good, though not as good as I thought it would be.

Cosmic Crisp apple. It was good but hard to describe, somehow firm and juicy but not crispy?

Mountain Dew’s fruit cake soda is my new favorite mixer! Downright delicious with spiced rum.

This week’s dinners were all a) great, and b) bar food themed! We covered tacos, nachos, cheeseburgers, chicken tenders, and pickles! Taco salad. Chopped romaine / Sugar Bomb tomatoes / avocado / black beans / extra-sharp cheddar / ground turkey sauted with white onions and taco seasoning / cracked pepper / homemade ranch dressing – sour cream, lime, Crystal hot sauce, and ranch seasoning. I would have said that I don’t care about ranch dressing but this stuff was fantastic.

Pickled oven baked tofu tenders plus roasted broccoli. Sprouted extra-firm tofu / marinated in pickle juice, soy sauce, Sriracha, and garlic / dipped in a mix of flour, cornstarch, sugar, and smoked paprika – then egg – then panko bread crumbs / baked at 375 degrees for 30 minutes. So crispy.

Cheeseburger inspired nachos plus roasted green beans with ranch. Trader Joe’s dill pickle chips / extra-sharp cheddar / ground turkey sauted with garlic, ketchup, and yellow mustard / Kewpie / chopped Sugar Bomb tomato, white onion, and dill pickle.

Traditional nachos, actual bar food. I worked a 10.5 hour day on Thursday (!!, coming back from a vacation means extra work, being short-staffed near the holiday means extra work, and training an intern means things move more slowly, and all three factors converged horribly this week) so I grabbed take-out for dinner on my way home. Nachos with cheese sauce and cheddar, chicken, corn, tomatoes, peppers and onion, and zucchini.

Sour Cream Or Applesauce?

Vacation is over and I’m heading back to work today. By the time you read this I’ll be drinking eggnog with an extra-strong coffee!

It was a low-key weekend and I cooked dinner x2. My snacks definitely outshown my main meals though. Highlights include…

Trader Joe’s eggnog Greek yogurt with Satsuma mandarins and vanilla granola.

Surprisingly good sushi from Whole Foods. A California roll topped with fried shallots.

Should I be embarassed that the best thing I ate all weekend was a plate of microwave nachos? Really good microwave nachos? Spud Love potato chips with gouda, gojuchang, and maple.

Veggie noodles. Ramen / sauted frozen veggies (stir-fry mix and chopped spinach) / peanut butter gojuchang sauce / soft-boiled egg / Sriracha on top.

A delicious but non-traditional first night of Hanukkah. Trader Joe’s frozen latkes (potato and cauliflower) with sauted dinosaur kale and a fried egg. I pair my latkes with sour cream instead of applesauce.

Festive Feasting

It was a fun week! My aunt and uncle were in town for a show and we had a great time meeting up with them. I didn’t take any photos but we had GREAT meals at Canary Club and El Quiote.

Highlights include…

I managed to eat a truly impressive amount of peppermint and/or Christmas themed food!

Blank Street‘s candy cane cold brew was possibly my favorite coffee of this year!

The coquito cold brew (with two shots of espresso) from 787 obviously isn’t bad either.

Health-Ade Holiday Cheers kombucha.

Peppermint vodka seltzer, yes, I dyed it green.

Amazing tiramisu eggnog at Dante.

Peppermint ice cream (12/10) with peppermint chocolate quinoa bites.

Adam’s favorite bakery in New York is probably Blacksmith’s Breads. He sweetly surprised me with a pretzel bread.

Greek yogurt bowl with tiger syrup, granola, and persimmon.

Good-not-great but incredibly convenient microwave rice rolls.

Very Spicy Vegan Dan Dan Noodles from Very Fresh Noodles. It wasn’t actually that spicy (more numbing than hot) but the noodles were unbelievably fresh, bouncy and perfect.

This was the best meal I’ve made this year. Roasted broccoli / roasted red onion / roasted white beans / dried cherries / best ever sauce; in the food processor – parsley, roasted jalopeno, Korean chili flake, smoked almonds, smoked sardines, parmesan, honey, garlic, salt, evoo, and a bit of water / and I topped my bowl with candied jalopenos.

My True Love Gave To Me…

Three peppermint snacks, two cocktail ingredients, and a yogurt with passionfruit in it!

Three (festive) things from this weekend…

I’m very into this fancy, dessert-y yogurt brand.

A peppermint-focused work snack. I forget every year how tasty the chocolate mint Perfect Bars are.

Coke didn’t release their cinnamon cola this season so I made my own boozy version.

Thankful For Family

This year I worked Thanksgiving Day but then had Friday off for a long weekend — so my parents came to visit! They loved getting to experience the cold (not many 45 degree days in St. Thomas!) and spend time with their granddog and we did a bunch of great New York exploring. Our travels included Time Square, Bryant Park, Chelsea Market, Industry City, Bushwick, Greenpoint, and Hudson!

I did not take a single dinner photo – we went to the oldest steakhouse in New York and also had outstanding meals at Kitty’s in Hudson and Glasserie in Brooklyn! – but here are a few highlights from the past week…

I managed to eat many on-theme things on Thanksgiving.

My parents and I stuck with tradition and ate Thanksgiving nachos – Trader Joe’s stuffing chips with smoked turkey, sauteed shishitos, swiss and gruyere, and cranberry sauce. Plus sauteed green beans with butter and lemon.

Plus Loryn Powell said that Fireball and banana cream rum tastes like a Cinnabon so my mom and I tried it with a maple pecan cream liquer and were quite impressed!

We were also pleased with these Tip Top mini canned cocktails.

We tried – and loved – one of the Zaro’s specialty black and white cookies – mint chocolate.

We found the Oishii omakase strawberries on sale! Fun to try but no one really preferred them to standard strawberries.

Everyone thought that Fortunes Ice Cream in Trivoli makes the best ice cream we’ve ever tried. I got persimmon and the sour cherry labne.

Broad rice noodles with tofu from Bangkok Bar in Industry City – I’ve wanted to go there for forever and now I want to go back immediately.

Great iced latte from Wycoff Starr.

Festive yogurt bowl with plain skry, frozen banana bread, brown sugar syrup, cinnamon, and sumatra mandarin.