August 31, 2009

8.31.09

Recap of the weekend past:

Friday, Steve came over after work. We grilled some pizza, drank some beer, ate some of my homemade strawberry ice cream and watched the O's game :)

(Garlic & Herb pizza dough, $.99 at Trader Joe's)

Saturday, I got up and made Steve ham & cheddar croissant rolls for breakfast, went to meet some friends for lunch in Catonsville at El Nayar which also has a location in Columbia. I wouldn't say it was authentic Mexican cuisine, but the food wasn't bad. The place is BYOB which I like it was very clean, nicely decorated without being tacky, and the servers were attentive. The lunch menu is mainly a-la-carte and looked limited, but our server told us that we could order anything off of the dinner menu as well.

My chile relleno was huge, but I wish it were crispier. The fact that it was smothered in their home made salsa might have been the reason... I wasn't expecting my fish taco to be made with crispy fish, but didn't really mind, however I prefer grilled fish to fried any day. The taco would have been plain if it hadn't come with a cucumber, onion, and tomato "salsa" and a salsa verde. The cucumber, onion, and tomato "salsa" tasted a little vinegar-y and had a nice heat to it. I looked online and their menus are different for each location.

(Steve got a carne asada tostada, barbacoa torta, and a tamale)

(I ordered a chile relleno and a fish taco)

After lunch we walked around downtown Catonsville and stopped at an antique store, I bought a vintage necklace for $8 and a book about Fort McHenry for my dad which was $3. I love bargain shopping! After lunch Steve and I went Rita's then to the Under Armour Factory Store.

Went to the gym for a bit then dinner at Grill & Go a sushi and hibachi place in the Perry Hall Shopping Center by Superfresh and Chick-fil-A on Belair Road. We stuffed ourselves silly with sushi. This was my first time eating here and I believe that Grill & Go hasn't been open for more than 6mo. When we went around 8pm there was no one else in the small dining area except for us. Their menu had at least 40 different types of rolls one I had to try was the banana roll with coconut flakes. Have you ever in your life heard of a fruit roll!?, I haven't! Besides the banana roll they also have kiwi, mango, and pineapple with combination fruit rolls as well. The rolls were very reasonable, the fish tasted fresh, but it wasn't the best sushi I've ever had. Of course, I didn't expect it to be though.

Sunday, slept in, ate a big Sunday breakfast (family tradition), did some laundry, clipped coupons, errands around Towson, then went to dinner at Stewart's Drive-Inn in Rosedale. Every year since I was about 8, my family has been going to Stewart's once every season. My dad can remember coming here when he was a teen. The owner of Stewart's was still there this visit, he opens the drive-in from March-September then goes back to Texas for the winter. This season is going to be over September 13th so if you want a frosty mug of Stewart's fresh from the tap, creamy, root beer you better hurry!

(The Stewart's Chili Cheese Dog is a must try, they also have steamburgers. I got a chicken cheesesteak though)

Recipe & Links:

Ham & Cheddar Croissants
by CupcakeRN

I used reduced fat croissant dough that came with 8 servings, fat free cheddar cheese, and cut each slice of ham into half. Depending on your taste you can change the recipe to suit your preference such as using regular dough, adding more cheese or ham. This recipe is super easy, quick, and delicious. Perfect for a light breakfast or for a brunch appetizer.

Ingredients
1 roll of refrigerated croissant dough (I used reduced fat and came with 8 servings)
1 package shredded cheddar cheese (I used fat free)
4 slices deli ham

Directions
1. Preheat oven to temperature given on the baking instructions printed on the package of dough.
2. Unroll a triangle of dough and sprinkle on cheddar cheese. Place a piece of ham on top of the cheese and roll from one outer corner to the other.
3. Place the croissant corner side down onto a non-stick baking sheet.
4. Repeat for the remainder of the dough.
5. Bake for about 10-12 minutes or until the croissants are golden brown and the cheese is melted.

El Nayar (official website)
Urban Spoon Review (for Columbia location)

Under Armour (link to list of retail and factory store locations)
1010 Swan Creek Drive
Curtis Bay, MD 21226

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August 27, 2009

8.27.09

My inbox was blowing up today when I woke up with friends and new friends commenting about my blog and the mention about my blog on HowChow. How cool is that?! Thanks for the shout out HowChow, I love your blog!


Regarding the post, I've lived in Baltimore since I was 3 months old and although I wasn't born in Baltimore, I consider myself to be a Baltimore Hon tried and true. I love the O's, steamed crabs, Berger Cookies, and have even visited Edgar Allan Poe's grave site on Halloween... you get the point :)

I still live in Baltimore, but have been spending a lot more time in HoCo since that's where my boyfriend lives. I've really come to like HoCo, it's just such a great county for seeing, eating, and doing new things!

This weekend, I'm planning a lunch get together with my still very good friends from college. We're trying to go somewhere that is mid-point from the different areas we're coming from which just so happens to be the Elkridge/Columbia area. I recently purchased a $25 certificate for only $10 from Restaurant.com to Zapata's in Columbia, MD. Their website states that they are 100% Mexican owned. I studied abroad in Mexico and have desperately trying to find some tasty, authentic Mexican food so I'm looking forward to trying this place out, I hope my friends wanna go Mexican!

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August 26, 2009

8.26.09

One of my favorite things to do is clip coupons especially for new products. A few weeks ago, while clipping coupons from the Sunday paper I came across a coupon for $1.50 off of one Stouffers Anytime Gourmet Meal Kits.

This product idea seemed really cool to me because between Steve and I, I am definitely not the better cook of us two and these kits come with all the ingredients and directions needed to make a pretty healthy gourmet tasting meal for fairly cheap and in very little time.

I went ahead and bought the Rosemary Chicken kit ($8.99 - $1.50 = $7.49 at Safeway) and made it for dinner Sunday night.

At first look, I was unsure about how filling this meal would be. The kit came with 2 chicken breasts, sauce, 4 nests of linguini, broccoli, cherry tomatos, and zucchini. After everything was cooked it ended up being much more than I expected.

The two pieces of chicken breast were not of equal size, one was much smaller than the other. This wasn't a problem for Steve and I because I wasn't terribly hungry, but if both people are equally hungry this may be a problem. We ate a spinach salad as a side to the meal. You get a decent amount of food for the price, but I think with this meal you would definitely need to have a side such as bread or a salad like we had.

The chicken came pre-marinated and the flavor was very good. The flavor of the white wine sauce was great with the chicken, it wasn't over garlicky or salty like many frozen meal sauces are.

The meal was super easy to prepare and tasty! When I was at the grocery store today, I bought the Peppercorn Crusted Steak with Port Wine Sauce and Lemon Garlic Shrimp meal kits, which I had coupons for! You can get yourself a coupon too over at the Stouffers Anytime Gourmet website.

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August 25, 2009

8.25.09

I was planning on making Steve banana pudding while at his house this weekend, but when I told him about my plan he requested that I make him banana cream pie. I didn't feel like going to the grocery store to buy things for a pie crust and I already had all the ingredients for the banana pudding so I improvised and turned the vanilla wafers into the pie crust. I try to make recipes as healthy as possible so for this pie I used skim milk, reduced fat Nilla wafers, lite Cool Whip, and margarine.

Banana Cream Pie
by CupcakeRN
Ingredients
1 package banana cream instant pudding
1 1/2 cups cold milk
1 tub whipped topping
2 large ripe bananas
30 Nilla wafers
4 tbsp butter or margarine
Pam for baking spray

Directions
Pie Crust
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Melt butter in a medium sized microwave safe bowl.
3. In a food processor, finely chop 30 Nilla wafers to a crumb like consistency. Pour the chopped wafers into the melted butter and mix.
4. Spray a pie pan with Pam for baking spray. Using the back of a spoon or the palm of your hand, press the crumb mixture into a 9 1/2 in. x 1 1/2 in. pie pan. Make sure to press the mixture up the sides of the pan. Bake for about 12 minutes or until the crust becomes golden brown. Allow to fully cool.

Pie Filling
1. Beat milk and pudding mix with a whisk for about 2 minutes then let stand for about 3 minutes.
2. Stir in half the tub of whipped topping.
3. Slice bananas and set aside.
4. Pour half of the pudding into the bottom of the pie crust then top with sliced bananas.
5. Pour the remaining pudding over the sliced bananas.
6. Cover the pudding with the rest of the whipped topping.
7. Cover with foil and allow to set in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours.

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August 23, 2009

8.23.09

I just got an e-mail about the Foodbuzz Blogger Festival in San Francisco, CA. It sounds like it's going to be a lot of fun and best of all, it's free to all Featured Foodbuzz Publishers!! Foodbuzz really does a lot for it's bloggers such as offering to pay for dinners if a group of bloggers wants to get together, giving press passes for food festivals/expos, cute freebies for bloggers such as business cards I got when I first signed up.


I'm so sad that I can't go... I'm already doing a lot of traveling in October so I have to give my credit card a break. Here is the link incase you're interested.

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August 13, 2009

8.13.09

Steve and I celebrated our 6 mo. anniversary on the 3rd and he surprised me at my house with a beautiful bouquet of flowers (gerber daisies, orchids) and curry tofu for dinner! <3
Last week Steve and I went to dinner at AIDA wine bistro in Columbia for HoCo Restaurant Week and the food there was amazing!

On Tuesday I met up with my friend Dan and we went to Geisha Sushi Bar in Mt. Vernon for dinner. I think that this place has a great RW deal considering a special roll off of their menu is around $10. We got a 5 course meal for $30 you really can't beat that. I got shumai, miso soup, house salad with ginger dressing, bulgogi (korean bbq beef), and green tea ice cream. Dan got shrimp tempura, wonton soup, avocado salad, 12 pieces nigiri + spicy tuna roll, and fried banana ice cream. I would go back here again and soon. This was the best spicy tuna roll I have ever had and the fish for the nigiri was so fresh.
Wednesday was a girls night dinner with my friends that I've known since high school. We went to Meli in Fells Point.
As our waiter explained, Meli means honey in Greek so the chef incorporates honey into all of the dishes. The food and drinks were good and so was the service. My only complaint was that there were fruit flies flying around our table... Could it be the honey?

I got shrimp & grits BLT, lavender honey glazed salmon served with Peruvian potatoes and baby bok choy and galaktoboureko (try saying that 3x fast) for dessert. Other's ordered veal, duck, and chicken penne, all very good.
The wikipedia definition of galaktoboureko, here.

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August 10, 2009

8.10.09




I just ordered this cute cupcake scrub top! I submitted the cupcake sighting to All Things Cupcake. See the post here.


Anyone else notice the extinction of blueberry bagels at Dunkin Donuts? Well, after weeks of wondering "where the heck did they go?," I finally asked an employee who just said that they were "discontinued." He also remarked to me that many people really liked the blueberry bagels. When I got home, I decided to ask DD via Twitter, where the blueberry bagels went to. DD posted about it and mentioned me in their status! Check it out here.



Also, just another reason why I loveeeee Dunkin Donuts. Every few months or so DD honors different professions. For the month of August DD is honoring nurses. Yay! Everyday Tuesday with a work badge, nurses get a free medium coffee. Sound too good to be true. It's for real, The Baltimore Sun even posted an article about it, you can read it here.

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August 7, 2009

8.7.09

I just got this awesome and super cute, little pink Seagate FreeAgent Go external hard drive from newegg.com for my new Macbook pro. Steve introduced me to Newegg and it's now my go to place for anything computer gadget related, I have found that they have the lowest prices.

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