Posts tagged ‘bacon’

March 17, 2011

Listen to the Local’s

I’m back from The Keys…and not so happy about it. Although I have missed you all πŸ™‚ We went from this:

To this:

Whomp. Whomp. Whomp.

I’m not going to complain anymore though because we had a great time, ate delicious food, even better desserts and soaked up every ray of sunshine possible.

We rented bikes as our mode of transportation, so i used the excuse that since I was riding at least 12 miles a day I was “earning” my desserts. Yeahh…I’m ridiculous.

Every restaurant we ate at was recommended by a local – Here is the recap aka an insane amount of Food Porn

Day 1

First stop: Flamingo Crossing – Homemade Ice Cream

Ordered: Mint Chocolate Chip & Cookies n Cream in a waffle cone

Grade: A+ – Perfect way to kick off the trip!

Day 1

Dinner: Ibis Bay Lighthouse

Ordered: Old Bay (lie, only MD serves Old bay apparently) Shrimp – Special of the Day: Blackened Yellow tail snapper with black beans and yellow rice – Seared sesame tuna with spanish rice

Grade: A+

Day 1: After dinner treat

Ordered: “Serendipity’s” Frozen Hot Chocolate

Grade: F for FAILURE. Hands down, the WORST dessert I’ve ever had. They claimed they follow serendipity’s recipe to the tee – but it’s a lie. This was basically icy water made to look like chocolate. Huge disappointment is an understatement.

Day 2:

Dinner: Conch Republic – huge restaurant on the water w/ great service and zero disappointments

Ordered: Appetizer: Cracked Conch (SEA SNAIL!?!?!?!) Dinner: Grilled Shrimp w/ Yellow Rice and Chef’s Veggies (which were the best veggies I’ve ever had at a restaurant) and Blackened Swordfish w/ yellow rice & veggies.

Grade: A+ – still can’t believe I ate a slithering sea-snail.

Day 2:

After Dinner Treat: Tempura fried strawberries rolled in cinnamon and sugar, drizzled with dark chocolate in a white chocolate cream sauce with a side of vanilla bean ice cream.

Grade: I. die. for. this. A++++++


Day 3:

Breakfast: Blue Heaven – Heaven on a fork and Sin in a glass.

Ordered: Eggs over easy with homemade wheat bread, bacon, potatoes, 1 blueberry pancake and 1 strawberry pancake with real maple syrup and a glass of chocolate milk.

Grade: If there was a grade higher than an A, this would take it. If you are ever in Key West – GO HERE. There will be a wait, but it’s worth it.


Day 3

Linner: Sloppy Joe’s

Ordered: Pulled pork sandwich, Sloppy Joe sandwich, Bacon cheese fries

Grade: C+ – service..horrible, fries…cold, pulled pork was better than the famous sloppy joe. Wasn’t expecting gourmet food but still expected to enjoy my time there.


Day 3

Post Sunrise Cruise Treat: Better than Sex Desserts

Ordered: Peanut Butter Perversion & Between the Red Velvet sheets Cheesecake

Grade: A. I loved the atmosphere – it was pitch black and they hand you a flashlight to review the menu, the waitresses are actresses and there are fun games at the table – The cheesecake was SO red and velvety it was a true treat. It takes their chef 9 hours to make and it just won a crazy amount of awards. Of course i loved the peanut butter pie as well because we all know peanut butter + chocolate = amazeballs.

Day 4

Lunch: Green Republic – Regular, Vegetarian and Vegan Meals

Ordered: Mango Green Monster, Berry Good Smoothie, Vegan Avocado and swiss burger and steak and goat cheese sub

Grade: B – I thought everything was delicious but overpriced. It was $40 for the 2 sandwiches and 2 drinks. They also didn’t have any tables and you ate over your tray… I think they just opened so I’m sure they will pull it together!

**FORGOT PICS OF DINNER – THAI FOOD AT FLOATING RESTAURANT**




Day 4

Cold dessert after spicy thai food: Mattheessen’s Eats, Sweets and Treats

Ordered: 1/2 pound chocolate chip cookie w/ Cookie Dough and Cookies n cream ice cream with pretty sprinkles (mine), 1/2 pound chocolate chip cookie w/ cake batter ice cream (Adam’s)

Grade: A+ – this was the FIRST dessert to ever defeat me. I’ve never not been able to finish a dessert….ever. No lie that I laid down in a booth for at least 10 minutes before my boyfriend had to pull me out of the restaurant because it was time to go. We should’ve shared one fo sho.

 

Dessert Coma

 


Day 5

What I love most: Ice Cream – Polar Bear Homemade Ice Cream

Ordered: Strawberry Cheesecake and Peanut Butter Cup Ice Cream in a chocolate dipped waffle cone

Grade: A+ – Key West clearly makes the best ice cream. I’m never going to be able to have ice cream anywhere ever again because it will never live up to this! I was so excited to eat this that my glasses became crooked.

We also had Key Lime Pie, various breakfasts/lunches we made from our grocery store visit, pizza and managed to polish off this baby:

Who wants to start placing bets on how much weight I gained during the trip? I did manage to get three 4.5 mile runs in, some weight lifting and all of the bike riding/swimming we did added into my daily routine but I’m still counting our eats as overindulging. As i sit here in the biggest pair of sweatpants I own, promising to get back to being healthy tomorrow, I’ve decided to start lent a week late. I’m giving up sweets… I know this isn’t going to be easy but that’s the point (in my mind). This means no ice cream, no cheesecake, no brownies/cookies/cupcakes/cake, fro-yo, etc. I can still have yogurt, granola bars, fruit, peanut butter etc (whew) but I haven’t decided if my frozen banana should be counted as dessert?? This is going to be a HUGE challenge for me but an extremely fulfilling one if I succeed. So, wish me luck!

It may be hard to believe but we did other things besides eat on our trip!

Laid out

Went on a Sunset Cruise

Went Snorkeling

Saw Dolphins!

Watched every sunrise and sunset possible

Made lots of funny faces & had the best time ever πŸ™‚

We will definitely be back to visit Key West again (hopefully sooner than later) and highly suggest taking a vacation there if you haven’t.

You can find me at the gym working off the millions of calories i took in on vaca or in the kitchen creating recipes that will include anything BUT sweets for the next 33 days. I do have a couple of healthy dinner recipes I hope to post tomorrow… But for now I’ll be catching up on reading blogs! Hope everyone has a wonderful week πŸ™‚

QUESTIONS: Any advice for giving up sweets? When you go on vacation are you more food or activity oriented?

Some sunrise/sunset favorites from Key West


Sorry for the picture overload!! I have about 50 more – if you want to see them you can check out my facebook page .


February 7, 2011

Vegan Week

Disclaimer: I am not responsible for any instant cavities or weight gain you receive after reading this post.

HAPPY MONDAY! I’m starting my week off Vegan Style… It’s DC Vegan week and I am taking the challenge to go 7 days animal and dairy free! I’m positive I could be a Vegetarian for a week but going Vegan is really going to test me. I’ve planned out my meals and I’m hoping that will make it easier. Wish me luck πŸ™‚ If you have any tips feel free to share them!

I am finally feeling back to normal (sickness wise, i feel gross from Super Bowl Food!). I got a couple of workouts in this weekend including spin, a 3 mile run, zumba and lifting shoulders and legs! It felt good to get back in the gym and sweat the rest of the sickness out. My legs absolutely hate me today. I cannot remember the last time they were this sore… But, I guess that’s a good thing!

Saturday I had lunch with my mom and aunt at California Pizza Kitchen. We all had a cup of their Tuscan White Bean Soup (I HIGHLY recommend this) and split a White Pizza w/ spinach and bacon on wheat thin crust.

We thought we had such great will power for sharing a pizza between 3 people. After we left lunch we walked around the mall… Then we saw a window display that looked like this:

Who can pass up godiva!? Clearly not us…

Can you guess which one is mine? The “healthy” one… Dark chocolate covered strawberry! If I would’ve known it was 7.99 before we got to the register I would’ve never ordered one! It was good…but seriously, I could make 24 of those for 7.99!

I was proud of myself for leaving the mall with only one bag.

Go me πŸ™‚

The 5-year-old I nanny for had her birthday this weekend so I finished hanging the lanterns, making the cutest cupcakes ever, a delicious kids trail mix and wrapping the gift baskets. Kids birthdays sure have gotten extravagant! I want to share the cupcake “recipe” with you… Can you guess what kind they were?

OBVIOUSLY! I have yet to come across someone who doesn’t like funfetti cake… and if I do ever meet that person I’m positive we have nothing in common and we can’t be friends. Sorry. These weren’t just normal funfetti cupcakes… They were pink and purple rainbow princess cupcakes! Seriously, I want someone to take notes for my next birthday party because these will need to be in attendance. I have the same taste as a 5-year-old, it’s cool.

Princess Colored Cupcakes

Ingredients

  • Funfetti cake mix
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup water
  • Neon food coloring
  • Vanilla Frosting
  • Sprinkles

Directions

  • Start off by preparing the Funfetti cake mix as directed on box with eggs, oil and water.
  • Divide into 2 separate bowls. Add food coloring drops til desired color is reached.

  • Line muffin tin with baking cups or spray with non-stick oil. Evenly distribute the first layer (whichever color you choose; i alternated) with batter.

  • Gently spread the next layer of color on top with the back of a spoon.

Pink and Purple. Pink and Purple. Pink and Purple.

  • Bake the cupcakes according to your box directions.
  • Remove and let cool before icing.

  • Decorate with Icing
  • Sprinkle

When you cut into them they should look a little like this:

You know you want to make these. Right now. Or maybe for valentine’s day… Although, I really do have the best cupcake recipe for that day that I will post later – I am such a tease.

I also made some Festive Pretzels.

 

Sweet and Salty. Sweet and Salty. Sweet and Salty. ( I need to get the black and Yellow song out of my head)

AND one of the yummiest Kids Trail Mixes…

Captain Crunch Berries cereal, Banana Chips, M&Ms, Dried Blueberries and Pretzels drizzled with White Chocolate.

My dentist is going to hate me.

For Super Bowl Sunday I made 2 things… But only concentrated on taking pictures and writing down measurements for one recipe. Recipe #1 was a Bacon Cheeseburger Macaroni and Cheese and recipe #2 was Twix Blondies. I paid more attention to the dessert because I know you all secretly have a fat kid trapped in your body like I do. You’re welcome.

Twix Blondies


Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup melted butter
  • 2 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
  • 2 1/4 cups of brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 26 coarsely chopped mini twix bars + 1 king size twix
  • 1 cup Vegan chocolate chips + 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips melted

Directions

  • Preheat to 350 F.
  • Grease 9×13 baking pan.
  • In medium-sized bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt, whisking together.

     

  • In mixing bowl combine butter and brown sugar on low-speed until smooth.

     

  • Add eggs one at a time continuing on low-speed.

  • Slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture until just combined.

  • Add the coarsely chopped Twix and chocolate chips stirring with wooden spoon.

  • Spread batter into prepared pan and bake approx 25-30 minutes until they are set.

  • Toothpick will come out slightly gooey. Be careful not to overcook.

  • When removed from oven sprinkled reserved Twix on top and drizzle with melted chocolate.

  • Cool in pan for 2-3 hours or overnight.

  • Don’t cut the bars until they are completely cooled or they will be messy

Twix blondies might be my new favorite dessert… Beating funfetti… Yep, I said it. Gooey, salty, and sweet. I’ve fallen in love… Sorry Adam.

Speaking of my boyfriend – He is 28 years young today! Happy Birthday babe πŸ™‚

I’m still feeling so bad for not being able to make it to NJ to spend the weekend with him for his birthday but we will see each other this weekend so it will have to be extra special!

I’m also sorry to admit to all you Steelers fans but I’m happy that Green Bay won! The Steelers JUST won… I’m glad someone else got the chance… Did anyone else notice Christina Aguilera sing the wrong words to the national anthem? She has a phenomenal voice but girlfriend is looking rough these days! I also wasn’t thrilled with the halftime performance… I thought it was cheesy and that Fergie’s voice sounded HORRIBLE. Ok, I’m done being a hater.

One more thing I want to share with you before you stop reading this lengthy post… I got an awesome groupon deal yesterday for 1 month of unlimited yoga at Bikram Studio in Annapolis for $15! Normally its $15 a class… If you don’t receive Groupon emails daily you need to sign up! Click here to do so. Each day they send you a deal on something in your area. I am a groupon groupie. I buy alllll the time and I’ve never once regretted a purchase.

I’m off to work aka playing catch up on reading blogs πŸ˜‰

QUESTIONS: Do you have any vegan tips for me? What was your favorite Super Bowl commercial?

Day 10: Something you’re afraid of

THE DARK!! AHHHHH… I am such a baby. If the lights go out I instantly turn into chicken little. I may be tough on the inside but the dark is one thing that scare the bejeebees out of me.

Day 11: Favorite tv shows

I honestly don’t watch too much tv but when I do it’s all trash… Jersey Shore, Real Housewives, Kardashians etc. Anything on the Food Network gets my attention as well… Not trash πŸ™‚


Day 12: Something you don’t leave the house without

Currently it would be my Blackberry…But I will officially be an iphone user in 3 days! Woohooooo! My blackberry is breaking as we speak. I think it knows I’m about to trade it in πŸ˜‰