Thai Kitchen

Thai Kitchen

Thai Kitchen

2302 Texas Av.  Lubbock, TX 79411

Thai Kitchen is the true epitope of a hole in the wall restaurant that you discover through friends. Sure, the first impression may be that you put the wrong address in Google Maps after you pull in the isolated outskirts of Downtown Lubbock. It isn’t hard to miss though, because it is surrounded by covered parking, which is a rare find at restaurants and a nice perk here.

Once we walked in, we were seated immediately and served a free appetizer of shrimp puffs aka prawn crackers, a popular snack food in Southeast Asia. The interior of the restaurant was clean and they had a clear display near the register with purses and other merchandise they were selling. A quick look at the menu showed all the traditional Thai dishes for reasonable prices around $7. I ended up ordering the Panange Curry ( Panange Curry Paste with Coconut Milk, Peppers and Chicken). Panange gets its name from the city island off the west coast of Malaysia bordering southern Thailand. It’s a salty and sweet curry with a hint of a peanut flavor. My first few bites had a little kick of spiciness after I swallowed, but after that it was fine and tasted mildly spicy.

I’d definitely come back here for a second visit and look forward to trying another Curry or the Drunken Noodles with some Thai Tea! Thai Kitchen

What’s you favorite meal at Thai restaurants?

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Twisted Root Burger Co.

Twisted Root

Only at Twisted Root will you hear Tinkerbell and Lady Gaga being called out over the loudspeaker. Instead of handing out customers numbers for their orders, they give out a small card with a name on it. This is one restaurant with an atmosphere that is hard to experience elsewhere. It has a casual & laid back vibe with high ceilings and an open floor plan with outdoor seating as well. Whether you are on a cheat day or trying to be healthy, this restaurant will cater to both needs with the Fried Stuff and Healthy Stuff sections on its menu. They also have Handspun Custard Shakes which come in flavors you can’t deny such as Cookie Dough & Brownie, Hershey’s Chocolate, Toasted Coconut Cream Pie, and much more. It really makes for a tough decision when you have already ordered a burger with fries. Really though, it just makes for another excuse to come by Twisted Root again to try out their shakes. Twisted Root is also right next to Alamo Drafthouse Cinema so it’s the perfect stop for lunch or dinner before a movie or in our case, the optimal study break from hours in anatomy lab.

Pictured above is the Big Tex burger with guacamole, fried onion strings, and chipotle sauce. You can order any of their burgers in beef, turkey, vegan, or a specialty game meat. The only downside to the burger was that it did not come with any sides. You have to pay extra for any side items such as fries. We tried the fried pickles as well, which I would recommend only getting with a group as they can be too salty for one person. Overall, this is one burger joint I would revisit!

Here are some of the other burgers on their menu:

THE SPICY GOAT • Chipotle sauce, Glenview Farms goat cheese & bacon
THE KEVIN BACON • 3 pieces of bacon & Danish Blue Cheese
RANCH HAND • House-made peppercorn ranch, bacon & Aged Swiss
SOUTHERN COMFORT • Cheddar Cheese, Fried green tomatoes & Bourbon BBQ glaze
LOTS-A-SHROOM • Baby ‘Bello Mushrooms, garlic & Aged Swiss
THE VERDE • Hatch green chilis, guacamole & Pepperjack
FRESHMAN 15 • French fries, cheddar cheese, a hard egg & 2 pieces of bacon
SEXY HAWAIIAN • Jalapeño Jack cheese, teryaki sauce, pineapple salsa & prosciutto
THE WESTERN • Pepperjack, bacon, fried onion strings & jalapeños
BIG TEX • Cheddar, guacamole, fried onion strings & chipotle sauce
ENOUGH SAID • Aged Cheddar, bacon-ranch sauce & potato chips on top

Twisted Root

Twisted Root Burger Co.

116 W. Loop 289, Ste 200, Lubbock, TX 79416

Eating Our Way Through Austin Part 1

Austin. An enchanting land that is a Disney Land for any foodie. A place where you can be calmly strolling from savory to sweet food trucks and later find yourself clenching your steering wheel while driving the scenic, yet overly hilly roads to Lake Travis. It’s the kind of city where you just want to eat everything and wish that there were more meals in a day. Our first stop was to find a relaxed brunch cafe where we could start off the day with a hearty dish. Many restaurants had outside seating and added their own zing to it like hanging up rows of string lights along trees paired with striped red and white chairs below for that pop of color.

Austin

Others had a covered ceiling which is perfect for avoiding that beating sun, while still being able to enjoy that occasional breeze.

Austin

Of course, when in Austin, you are bound to pass by more than just a few food trucks. This one screams Arizona and desert with its rustic chalkboard, bright yellow exterior, and of course the one thing no one can miss-the three cacti right outside which complete this food truck.

Austin

Yet another food truck find, but this one was sadly closed. Give me a crepe any time of day and I will be sure to take it. I loved the funky and creative font used on this food truck. The little aliens on the left definitely help with the whole futuristic vibe that I’m getting here. Food trucks are no longer what they used to be- a plain white van selling tacos on the street- rather they now bring novelty to the food truck scene, attracting a whole new type of consumers.

Austin

Let’s jump right into our first meal at South Congress Cafe.

  1. South Congress Cafe

1600 South Congress Avenue, Austin, TX 78704

First off, expect a wait if you will be coming here around brunch time as it was about a 30 minute wait for us. With our stomachs screaming for food, we had the menu up on our phones and decided what we were ordering before coming in. I settled on the Carrot Cake French Toast which consisted of carrot cake, cinnamon vanilla egg batter, cream cheese-pecan syrup, along with a medley of fruit. It was a little deceiving because I thought that the dish would be french toast that was flavored as carrot cake. Rather, it was a carrot cake that was soaked in a batter to resemble a french toast… Regardless, it was a flavorful cake and me and my friend polished all three slices off quickly!

South Congress Cafe

Next up is the Jalapéno Venison Meatloaf with charred poblano demi-glace, garlic whipped Yukon potatoes, and sautéed collard greens. This one definitely won the award on presentation and just looked too good to eat! I sampled a bite from my friend and it has got to be the best meatloaf yet that I have tasted at a restaurant.

South Congress Cafe

If you’re into seafood then you will love the Crab Enchiladas. With a combination of crab lump meat, jalapeño, shallot, house made corn tortillas, cilantro lime sauce, refried black beans, and lime sour cream, this dish packs great flavor and has different textures that complement each other. I am usually used to having beef or chicken in enchiladas, so this dish was a nice twist by using seafood.

South Congress Cafe

2. Halal Bros

2712 Guadalupe Street Austin, TX 78705

Warning: Do not share this dish with a friend if you value your friendship. You’ll end up ordering a second plate or god forbid, your friend may eat more than their fair share. This didn’t happen to me, although me and my friends were contemplating the idea, which yes… quickly died once we stepped foot inside. This is the Chipotle heaven of Mediterranean food. The juicy grilled chicken complemented the fragrant basmati rice perfectly, along with their legendary white sauce. I would suggest getting any of their rice plates, which come with a meat of your choice such as beef shawarma, tender chopped lamb, or even a combination plate for the sampler within you. If you’re not too fond of hot sauce, mention that to them beforehand so that you don’t have half your chicken drenched in a fiery condiment.

Halal Bros

A heavenly plate of chicken kebab over rice covered with a magical sauce. I would ask for extra sauce, because it is really just that good!

Halal Bros

3.   Stile’s Switch and BBQ

6610 North Lamar Boulevard  Austin, TX 78757

BBQ is a must in ATX or anywhere in Texas for that matter. Our tray was brimming with beef brisket, beef ribs, mac n cheese, and a loaded Frito pie.

Frito Pie? It’s not just some Fritos simply covered with chili cheese. It’s tender beef brisket marinated in barbecue sauce and mixed with Fritos, spicy Jalapeño garnish, a moundful of cheese, sweet beans, and topped with crunchy, fresh onions. This is one time that you definitely should go for the extraordinary rather than simply brisket alone, unless you choose to order both of course like we did. The brisket was juicy & charred to perfection and the beef ribs were humongous & Fred Flintstone sized. Inside it was very spacious, rustic looking, and just the place where you could enjoy the quintessence of barbecue. The employees were friendly and even gave us some free brisket on the side and super-sized our Frito pie after seeing our indecisiveness on what to order. No matter what mood you come into this BBQ joint with, you will leave a changed, satisfied, and happy person.

Stiles Switch BBQ

The old fashioned general store feel of Stiles Switch even came right down to the drinks. Creamy vanilla with a touch of bubble gum was a must have to complete this meal.

Stiles Switch BBQ

In between all of that eating, a little exploring doesn’t hurt. Nothing like climbing up a mountain for a scenic view to burn off those extra calories. Well, it’s actually more of a steep, and rocky hill that only took us a few minutes to climb up. Located right before the famous 360 Bridge, this climb leads you to a mesmerizing view overlooking the Austin Country Club golf course, 360 Bridge, and the classic rolling hill country. It’s a surreal feeling to just stand there and take in the gorgeous sights. It’s a free attraction so why not add it to your plans?

4. 360 Bridge

Loop 360 and Lake Austin

Austin, TX 78746

360 Bridge

And that’s not it, only the end of Part 1! Check soon for Eating through Austin Part 2 where Arpeggio Grill, The Hideout CoffeeHouse, and Graffiti Park will be featured next.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Houston Bites: Cedar’s Bakery

Houston Bites is back!!!

Driving back home with a colossal stack of white boxes, I knew that my brunch with my mom had gone successful. A planned brunch date quickly turned into stocking up a week’s supply for the family which was quite successful, although it disappeared without a trace. The effect after my first visit was similar as this is one place that is definitely hard to leave. I will have to warn you: you need to eat at least one of the mana’eesh (flatbread pies) in the store before heading home with a load, or else you may find yourself driving with one hand because your other fingers (that are now covered in olive oil and sesame) could not resist the temptations driven by the aroma of Middle Eastern herbs.

Cedar’s Bakery, a Lebanese family-owned business, may not have an extensive menu of breakfast or lunch items to order, but why have that when you have a range of quality mana’eesh, pita sandwiches, and assorted mini pastries? Watching your mana’eesh come out on long wooden paddles from the authentic twin brick ovens only adds to the experience as compared to simply picking up a pizza in a box from Domino’s. One of my favorites is sojok, a beef crumbly sausage flavored with cumin, garlic, and red pepper that is also mixed with a crumbly cheese. The sweet cheese and savory sausage complement each other on the soft, chewy pita flatbread. Other favorites of mine include the zaa’tar (a spice blend of sumac, thyme, oregano, sesame, & marjoram) and the parsley with akkawi cheese. If you are looking for a flatbread that is not so savory, I would go for the labne bread (a popular Middle Eastern cheese topped with tomatoes, olives, & a spice blend). Other than the famous mana’eesh, I have also tried their crunchy spinach and onion pies which are great to-go items for a quick snack. You can pair up some coffee or tea with your steaming baked good or you can be a bit more adventurous and go for the fragrant rose-flavored drink.

Quick “Must Order Bites” List

  1. Sojok Mana’eesh (my favorite although I am fan of their whole menu)
  2. Half Zaa’tar/ Half Cheese Mana’eesh
  3. Parsley & Cheese Mana’eesh
  4. Labne Mana’eesh
  5. Spinach Pies
  6. Rose Flavored Drink

Take a look at their menu here , complete with mouthwatering pictures to make your decision even harder on what to order haha.

Newsworthy Tidbit: Cedar’s has been rated as 42 out of the top 100 Houston restaurants for the Houston Chronicle in 2014 so come grab a quick bite here!

ADDRESS

8619 Richmond Ave

Houston, TX 77063

HOURS OF OPERATION

MONDAY-FRIDAY: 7am – 6pm

SATURDAY: 7am – 5pm

SUNDAY: 7am – 4pm

CONTACT INFO

EMAIL ADDRESS:info@cedarsbakeryhouston.com

TELEPHONE: (713)706-4141

 

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Sojok Mana’eesh

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Parsley & Cheese Mana’eesh

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Labne Bread

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Rose Flavored Drink

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Houston Bites: Slices & Ices

Back to another post of Houston Bites!

Today’s special is a pizzeria that just recently opened in the Clear Lake community of Houston, Slices & Ices. Offering specialty pizza flavors by the slice is what makes this unique foodie find stand out. The “Ices” that they serve as well include an array of Italian Ice flavors such as strawberry lemonade, cappuccino, and even classics like cherry and vanilla. One of the nice features is that they also conveniently deliver throughout the League City and Clear Lake, TX areas making delivery a nice option for people who work nearby and don’t want to leave the office.

For those wondering about the atmosphere, Slices & Ices has family-friendly seating. It has a very modern and sleek design and even has the menu displayed on large flat screen TVs. There are also TVs for sports fanatics and individuals who like to keep up with the current news.

big white pizza

Pictured above is a normal slice of the White pizza. It is larger than your average slice from the usual pizza store, so I was really excited when I saw this. The first bite was heavenly and I quickly finished it off (secretly wanting another slice haha so I will be back). If you love alfredo pizza then this pizza is definitely for you! For a light lunch, one slice would do, otherwise I would have gotten two. Other interesting pizza flavors they offer include taco pizza, grilled chicken caesar salad pizza, and chicken marsala pizza amongst other dizzying choices.

italian ice

Do not let the small size of the Italian Ice cup fool you. You will find it quite satisfying after a meal or even alone for a tasty and simple dessert. Pictured above is the Cotton Candy flavor on the left and Mint Chocolate Chip on the right. It is not dense, but rather light and fluffy making for a dessert that you won’t forget. They were very patient with me as I sampled multiple flavors until I found the perfect one for me, so no worries if it takes you three or more samples to find your favorite!

Slices & Ices

Location:

300 w. Bay Area Blvd.

Suite 800

Webster, TX 77598

832-932-5747

http://www.slicesandices.net/

Houston Bites: Ca Phe Phin- Vietnamese Coffee House

Cà Phê Phin. The name has a catchy sound to it. Cà phê is actually the Vietnamese word for coffee and phin is the drip by drip brewing process that they use to make the coffee. Me and my friends were looking for a cafe that we hadn’t been to before in Houston, and so this place seemed like the perfect find. You may have driven by this place numerous times not knowing what quenching drinks lay inside (If you are a Houstonian, that is). This coffee house lays tucked away in the middle of a shopping center on Nasa Rd 1. It is right next to Akimi Sushi & Stir Fry, which is a great landmark to have to find this place. Located in Houston, this cafè has quite the prime location as it is a minute’s drive from Nasa Space Center. If you are looking for a laid-back, calm atmosphere to talk to your friends, do some homework, or just get a drink, then this is a place that you should put down on your to-do list. I, myself, will be coming back for sure to try some of their different drinks.

Right when we walked in, we instantly felt the inviting and cozy atmosphere. The sunlight, shining in from the large windows, lit up the whole interior and gave it a very nice and natural feel. The funky cultural artifacts around gave additional character to the small space.

Ca Phe PhinCa Phe Phin

Here is the menu that we spent forever looking at. I personally am a big green tea and thai tea person, but I decided to try something different while here. The Ca Phe Sua was described as a translucent, rich smooth drink with light condensed milk and so I tried that one out in frappe form!

Menu

The delicious Ca Phe Sua frappe! It had a strong coffee taste but was creamy and satisfying. If you love coffee, but want a cold drink for the day then I would suggest you try out the Ca Phe Sua.

Ca Phe Sua Frappe

One of my friends got the Banana Japanese Green Tea Frappe, but without the bananas. This drink did not have a bitter after-taste as some green tea frappes do, so this is one you will enjoy!

Green Tea Frappe

And finally, pictured on the left is the pineapple slush. Even though this a coffee house and you would think that the only good products would be the coffee, the pineapple slush did not disappoint. For those people who prefer fruity over coffee drinks, this is a go-to! On the right is the salted caramel frappe, which again tasted just as one would expect, with a hint of salted caramel. All of us finished our drinks and left with the intention of returning to try the other delights that we did not get a chance to. I really wanted to get the toasted sesame frappe. I am curious as to how that one will taste, but we will have to wait till the next visit.

pineapple slush

 

Houston Bites: Main St. Bistro

Mile High Meatloaf

Nothing better than this Mile High Meatloaf to start off the special series of Houston Bites! Exploring the distinct and peculiar restaurants that Houston has to offer is a favorite hobby of mine and I would love to share my finds with everyone else. Me and my friends are usually indecisive when it comes to picking restaurants. After one look though at the Yelp user pictures for this place, we had all already decided this was the location we wanted to try. Main St. Bistro, a local restaurant, tucked away in the local district of League City, was just the place we were looking for. All of the sandwiches and burgers for lunch looked so good! From the Monterrey Chicken Sandwich with Lacey Swiss Cheese and Sautèed Corn to the Bob Marley with Habanero Jamaican Jerk Remoulade Slaw and Battered Fish, the menu certainly had our attention. Regardless of the small size of the lunch menu, it was still tough deciding between all the delicious sounding dishes.

The Mile High Meatloaf for me was an obvious choice after seeing how heavenly it looked! Honestly, the best part about it was the mashed potatoes with the bbq sauce. The onion rings were great, but the large size caused them to fall apart when eating. The meatloaf was alright; it was a pretty large size for one meal and I ended up taking more than half of it home.

Would I come here again? Sure. Definitely want to try their sandwiches. Overall, this place was a nice hole in the wall type of restaurant. A little small inside, but the friendly waiters and funky atmosphere gave us a great experience overall!

Dont forget to follow SimplyDelicious on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/simplydeliciousrecipes :)

Main St. Bistro

Main St. Bistro

Mile High Meatloaf

Final Foodie Adventure of 2013 in ATL

Happy New Year’s all!! Before I share any new recipes, here are a few pictures from my last foodie adventure of 2013 in Atlanta, Georgia :)

The highlight of my winter break was definitely visiting Atlanta with my friends. The purpose of the trip was to attend a dear friend’s wedding there and we all decided to make a food adventure out of it in the meantime. I mean, might as well, right? Anyways, Atlanta is definitely known for having quite a number of local cafes that we wanted to visit. Unfortunately, not everything always goes as planned and you just find yourself waking up at noon sometimes. One of the more memorable breakfasts that we did have though was at Krispy Kreme donuts. Krispy Kreme locations are quite sparse around the United States, so there’s always that bit of excitement when you find a location. We got an assortment of creme filled, custard filled, apple fritters, and even a few red velvet donuts! The red velvet donut itself was more than filling, very sweet along with a cakey texture.

Krispy Kreme

Krispy Kreme Overload

We attempted for more of a healthy lunch, well lunches over the next few days. Lunches ranged from panini sandwiches from Corner Bakery to authentic pizzas from Anticos and Korean tacos from Takorea. Corner Bakery is a chain eatery similar to Panera Bread. Although we were trying to avoid chains to be able to try more of the local foods, in dire situations sometimes you settle for anything. We had decided to take the train around the city that day, and so our freedom in choosing a place to eat was greatly reduced. Corner Bakery just happened to be very close to us and we decided to give it a go. I ordered a broccoli cheddar soup with a half sandwich that did not disappoint. Broccoli cheddar soup hasn’t failed me so far, and if you haven’t tried it I highly recommend you do so!

Corner Bakery

Cornery Bakery Sandwich and Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Sometimes it’s quite difficult to go through the day without a snack. That is, especially when you spot a large vintage sign from a distance with the letters “Funnel Cakes” on it, while walking through Olympic Centennial Park. Somehow we found ourselves waiting in line for one of these crunchy and satisfying creations. After getting a fresh funnel cake, it was difficult resisting one bite while waiting for everyone to take the obligatory food picture before digging in. As the multitude of forks dug in, it reduced and reduced until there was just powdered sugar left on the plate.

Chocolate Drizzled Funnel Cake

Chocolate Drizzled Funnel Cake

As the journey continued throughout the days, we came about Antico’s. Antico’s appealed to me due to the high volume of lengthy reviews that it received on Yelp, along with the mouth watering pictures. First off, when you visit a restaurant there are two main components that contribute to your experience: the atmosphere and of course the food itself. Unfortunately the atmosphere was very busy, definitely not one where you would sit down and peacefully savor your slice of pizza. It seemed like a place where you had to fight for a table to at least claim an area large enough for your group. The upside though was that it was a very interactive and lively atmosphere. The art of the pizza making was wide open to be viewed as you could sit and view the dough making and other intricacies of the pizza process. A few pictures later, we were ready to eat our pizza. I expected that they would have some sort of outdoor seating, but after asking the waiter, who replied telling me and a friend that it was not her problem where we ate our pizza and we can sit wherever. I was really surprised and shocked at her reply. We quickly left the unwelcoming waiter and told our group to look elsewhere outside for a spacious area. There was actually a gelato place next door and so we went inside to find large tables. Just what we were looking for! We bought a few drinks and sat down to finally eat.

Pizza Making

Behind the Scenes at Antico’s

Margharita Pizza

Antico’s Margharita & Four Cheese Pizzas

The final lunch was at Takorea, a hipster Korean Mexican fusion restaurant. The interior design of this place topped off all the previous restaurants that we had visited. It had a nice daylight feel to it that was fresh and crisp. The funky light fixtures along with the misplaced garage glass doors and iron wrought chairs put together a nice mood.

Takorea

Takorea’s Interior

Takorea

More of Takorea’s Interior

The food at Takorea was an interesting mix. Most of us though enjoyed the appetizer a lot more than our main dish. The appetizer that we got was the Gogi Nachos. I think it was the beef and the special sauce that they made along with it that made the nachos so irresistible. One bite from these nachos left me wanting more and more haha.

Takorea's Gogi Nachos

Takorea’s Gogi Nachos

Takorea's Chicken Burrito with Kimchi Fried Rice

Takorea’s Chicken Burrito with Kimchi Fried Rice

Our only dinner in ATL out, asides from the wedding and reception dinners, was at Mary Mac’s Tea Room. It sounded like the perfect soul food to have on any day and it sure beat that seafood eatery we were about to go to. This restaurant had a very homey feel to it and was structured similar to a colonial home from inside.

Mary Mac's Tea Room

Mary Mac’s Tea Room

The ordering process was quite unique at this place as we had to write down our orders on a slip of paper with various sections regarding what you would want. The portion size was quite large for the price, not to mention the bread appetizers that the placed out that were to die for! We felt like we were going to get full off of just the appetizers: flaky moist cinnamon bread rolls, yeast honey rolls, and corn bread. I kept hearing phrases like, “I’m only going to have another half” or “last one, I promise!” They were so good that we asked the waiter to give us another serving of the cinnamon bread to go. Why not have a delicious midnight snack for the night?

Mary Mac's Order Slips

Mary Mac’s Order Slips

After some amazing appetizers, we had quite high expectations for the food itself. A few of us were disappointed with the orders sadly. Taking into account how much I love Thanksgiving food, I couldn’t do anything but love the food that I ordered. The mac n cheese was a little watery, but everything else was on point, reliving that comfort food style present during Thanksgiving feasts.

Mary Mac's Turkey Plate

Mary Mac’s Turkey Plate with Cornbread Dressing and Sides of Mac n Cheese & Fried Okra

To end this long-winded post, I present the best cup of mocha that I have ever had. My image of Starbucks as top dog at coffee making was quickly put to rest after drinking this beautiful cup of caffeine! Well, hope you enjoyed my food endeavors and feel free to comment below to share any of yours :)

Octane's Mocha Coffee

Octane’s Mocha Coffee

Houston Premier Bakeries

Yup. I’ve finally decided to put a list together of my top 4 favorite bakeries in Houston! Of course I’m sure there are manyyyy more than what I’ve listed & I’m always on the lookout for new finds so I’ll find them slowly but surely :)

Something my friends & I loveeee doing is finding new places to eat out at whether it is a restaurant or a bakery. A successful find = a new go-to place to hang out with friends or to grab a quick dessert. Most of the places that I have found have been through word of mouth. Seriously, after hearing about a bakery for so long, there’s no doubt that you’ll be curious as to why it’s so prominent. And of course, there are those that we discover simply by driving by. You’re driving past the normal everyday stores you see, but wait… Something catches your attention! That new bakery on the street or whatever it may be haha. Well enough already, you get the idea. Let’s just get on with these deelish bakeries. By the way, they are in no particular order!

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SAVANNAH BAKERY & CAFE

http://savannahcafeandbakery.com

This bakery is simply amazing. When you walk in, you really are overwhelmed with the amount of choices you can make. Shall it be that Raspberry White Chocolate Cake, Red Velvet Cookie, or even that Apple Praline Pie? I was actually really excited when this bakery opened, because I thought it would be one of those local bread bakeries. Turns out I was wrong lol, but nevertheless I was very happy with this find! Friendly staff, nice atmosphere, and large portions are more than enough to enjoy with friends :)

*Apple Praline Pie pictured above*

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 DOLCE DELIGHTS

http://www.mydolcedelights.com

Macarons (n):  delicate small cookie sandwich with mystery filling; constantly seen everywhere in a variety of colors/flavors; very addictive.

Any bakery serving these should be beyond amazing. Not only does Dolce Delights serve these, but they also have these miniature mousse cakes that are too adorable (not pictured). I actually discovered this place from my one of my friend’s Instagram pictures. After she told me the name of the place, I went literally the next day with my friends and got some macarons. The best one out of them was the salted caramel hands down! The banana cream one though was not as soft as the others, leading me to believe that few people have probably ordered that one haha. The mocha and red velvet were both equal in my opinion after the salted caramel one. Overall, if you are craving macarons or a cute little cake, this is definitely your place.

*Salted Caramel, Mocha, Banana Cream, & Red Velvet Macarons pictured above*

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NOTHING BUNDT CAKES

http://www.nothingbundtcakes.com

If you’ve been following my blog then you probably know too well my obsession with pumpkin desserts! Haha. I was so excited when I got this Pumpkin Bundt Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting. It may look small in this picture, but the cake was so dense that it actually feeds two people. Not to mention, it was super moist as well! I got an extra bonus when I got this bundt cake, because the place had just opened so they had mailed out “free bundt cake” flyers in the mail. The variety here was smaller making it easier to choose something. You know what you’re getting: a bundt cake basically. All you have to do is choose a flavor. Simplicity wins here. I can truthfully say that this was simply delicious ;)

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SPRINKLES CUPCAKES

http://www.sprinkles.com

Oh no…. On to the last bakery on my list! Don’t worry, I will most probably have a second post once I find more memorable bakeries. Anwaysss, Sprinkles Cupcakes is well known all over the US. I’m sure every area has a place that could be comparable to this one (Georgetown or Crave Cupcakes for example). These cupcakes are quite pricey and didn’t seem worth the hype that everyone always makes over them, although they are good. But.. If you go on twitter or their fb page, you’ll be sure to find these secret words that get you a free cupcake. And they post these words every day for the first 50/100 ppl to say it, so be sure you are one of those lucky few!

*Red Velvet & Mocha Cupcakes pictured above*

Any favorite bakeries that you have found worth sharing?

The Search Is Over!

I read in an article once that spending money on experiences and eating out made people happier as compared to spending money on materialistic items. I for one, agree completely with this. An experience will stay with you forever, an unforgettable memory. Every time I eat out, it’s another new experience. Discovering new restaurants and bakeries is always a joy, not to mention the varieties of cuisine that you will get exposed to. In the past weeks I have also discovered two new bakeries, one known for their moist bundt cakes and another for their delish macarons (pictures coming up soon).

Anyways, me and my friends have been looking foreverrrrrr for an exceptional Chinese restaurant to go to! The Chinese fast food in the mall just wouldn’t cut it anymore and neither would those loaded buffets. We settled on P.F.Changs in the end, a decision well-made. Before we even walked into the restaurant, we knew it would be spectacular due to the clean cut presentation. If you haven’t been to this restaurant yet, I highly recommend you visit it if it’s near your area.

**By the way, my goal this winter break is to post something everyday whether a recipe, book review, or something interesting I’ve read, so keep posted! :)

photo 1

P. F. Changs!

What we ordered…. Before the real food came haha. Dynamite Shrimp, Crab Wontons, Spring Rolls, oh and can’t forget Auntie Chang’s Frappe :)

*Almond & Cashew Chicken*

Stir-fried with bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, celery, bamboo shoots and water chestnuts in a garlic soy sauce

RA Sushiiii

Oh the wonders of sushi. I’ve never really gave thought to eating at a sushi restaurant, well because it doesn’t fit the image of a filling meal to me. After this restaurant, that conception was pretty much out the window. Anyways, one of my best friends has been wanting to go to RA Sushi foreverrr so we finally decided to go one day with people who like sushi. In the past, the plans had always been canceled because there’s always bound to be one person who doesn’t like seafood.

If you’ve ever been to a sushi restaurant then you probably already know how confusing the menus can be. I got three types of sushi and it was a raw deal because we went during happy hour as well! The appetizer was quite interesting. It was called edamame, basically steamed soybeans dusted with salt. Oh and you eat the pea only, not the pod. Can’t wait for my next trip to this restaurant! My first was absolutely memorable :)

Tootsy Maki: Kani kama crab mix, shrimp & cucumber rolled & topped with crunchy tempura bits; drizzled with a sweet eel sauce

Viva Las Vegas Roll: Kani kama crab & cream cheese rolled in rice & seaweed, lightly tempura battered & topped with spicy tuna, kani kama crab mix & sliced lotus root; finished with a sweet eel sauce & spinach tempura bits

 

California Rolls

Bodegas Taco Shop!

The medley of atmospheres that restaurants have to offer make them so much fun to go to, not to mention how each usually has a signature dish. Fuddruckers- Burgers. Lulu’s Bakery and Cafe-Huge Cinnamon Rolls. BJS-Deep Dish Pizza. You name it. So naturally, going to Bodegas Taco Shop I just had to order some sort of taco. I was about to go for the shrimp tacos, but I’m glad I ordered the fish tacos instead. They were the best fish tacos I have ever eaten, packed with amazing flavors and topped with a nice slice of avocados!

My friend and her sister ordered a platter for two including flautitas, yucca fries, wings, not to mention the delicious assortment of sauces that came with it too!

The outdoor scene was so gorgeous, with the hanging lights and humongous trees. You feel obligated to sit outside because the atmosphere is so serene and relaxing.

If you are ever at the Houston Museum of Fine Arts or in the museum district, be sure to stop by here for a quick lunch!

Seafood Galore

There’s nothing like waking up early on a beautiful Saturday morning and heading out to the fish market for the fresh catch of the day. You could buy it from your grocery store but the whole experience is about going to the fish market and having a large selection to choose from, all displayed on huge tables of ice in front of you not to mention the heavy fish smell! Seafood is amazing simply because there are so many ways to prepare it whether it be baking, broiling, frying, sautéing, or broiling. What’s also cool is that you can integrate seafood into almost any dish you want to make: seafood guacamole, shrimp with pasta, crab meat with rice, octopus in salads, etc. Another great benefit is that fish is extremely healthy for you. Many of the common benefits include lowering blood pressure, reducing risk of heart disease, reducing depression, and preventing cancer.

Here is the recipe for the breadcrumb coating commonly used with frying fish.

BreadCrumb Coating for Fried Seafood

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup of flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup of breadcrumbs (I use Panko breadcrumbs)
Directions:
  1. Place your ingredients in 3 bowls, one for each (place them in this order: flour, eggs, breadcrumbs)
  2. Coat the fish with flour first
  3. Dip it in the beaten egg mixture
  4. Lastly, coat the fish with the breadcrumbs
  5. Fry the breadcrumb coated fish

The Small Fresh Squids Ready to be Cleaned!

-Make sure you clean the squid if you didn’t buy it cleaned already. There’s a lot inside of them that you have to take out including this clear thin piece of cuttlebone-looks pretty neat. Here’s a website that may assist you in cleaning squid yourself :

http://susaneatslondon.com/2011/12/09/cleaning-squid/

Boiling Shrimps

-These are very quick to make-5 minutes on average-but it really depends on the size of your shrimp. It’s important that you do not overcook these or else they will become tough and rubbery. One of the most common signs that your shrimp are done cooking is when they turn a pink color.

The Catfish with Spices

-The catfish is relatively easy as well. All you do is cut the fish into slices, coat it with some spices, and dip it in the breadcrumb recipe and you’re done after frying them!

A Bass and Red Snapper Stuffed with a Medley of Herbs

-You can use any of your favorite herbs or spices to stuff these fish. I put rosemary, sage, and a couple of lemon slices among other spices inside them.

What’s your favorite seafood?

Happy New Years!!!

Wow, well it’s been a while since my last post… With the busy holiday season and New Year’s there hasn’t been much time to sit down and blog, but I do have a lot to share so lucky y’all! First off, I was in Chicago for the holidays so my next three posts will be dedicated to a Man vs Food restaurant that I tried out, the scrumptious foods I ate on New Year’s, and a special new recipe that I prepared!

Y’all already know how much I love Man vs Food so while I was in downtown Chicago fully aware that there was a Gino’s East in the vicinity, there was no way that I was going to leave this city without eating at this restaurant first! After a couple hours of walking all over downtown with my cousins, a quick stop to see this Gino’s East revealed an unexpected long line. We ended up ordering a small spinach and cheese deep dish pizza take out so we could shop during the 45 minute long wait. A visit back to Gino’s to pick up our much desired pizza left us with a failed attempt to find where Adam Richman signed his name :( Come on, a couple minutes is barely anything to find one signature amongst walls and walls of scribbled signatures! We were starving and exhausted so we didn’t really care except about taking a bite from that cheesy spinachy pizza with such a rich aroma. By the way, no pieces of this amazing pizza survived for pictures lol. I guess I’ll just have to go again to Gino’s whenever I come back to Chicago for the dine-in experience as well. Not a problem at all. Well, on to the pizza itself now. The crust tasted like no other crust I’ve eaten before! It was a golden yellow and was crunchy, not soft and chewy like the generic pizza crust. The pizza itself complimented the crust with its saucy and cheesy insides. Deep dish pizzas are different than others because the cheese layer goes underneath the saucy layer (so basically the reverse of a normal pizza) plus the mouthwatering crust is a couple inches high. And lastly, the pizza tasted oh so fresh, not greasy and oily like they usually are. I definitely recommend this restaurant to anyone who is visiting Chicago!!

Gino’s East

The famous Water Tower which was one of the few buildings to survive the Great Chicago Fire of 1871

The Colossal Cinnamon Roll

I have been a big fan of Man vs Food ever since I first saw the show on Netflix a while back. If you haven’t seen this amazing show, it’s basically about this adventurous guy, Adam Richman, who goes around the United States to a medley of unique restaurants with authentic, local food or some crazy food competition where you have to eat an insane amount of food to get a free shirt or your picture on a Wall of Fame. You never know what to expect whether it be the O.M.G. Burger Challenge or the 10 lb Stuffed Pizza Challenge. Sometimes he wins these food challenges, and sometimes food is victorious.

Being big fans of his, I just had to go to a restaurant that he has been at. Just so happens, me and my family were at San Antonio where Adam had visited a couple restaurants. After a quick search, we found Lulu’s Bakery and Cafe to be the nearest one where he went for their famous chicken fried steak and humongous three pound cinnamon rolls.

The humongous 3 pound cinnamon roll!

Hope ya’ll enjoyed the pictures!