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Archive for the ‘Dining Out’ Category

Hi guys!

Miss me? I took a much-needed break from the blog after realizing on my trip how glued I have been to the computer in my daily life. After lots of delays and snowstorms, we got back to New York on Sunday morning and I’ve taken a few days to think about where I want to go with the blog. I definitely missed writing and communicating with all of you — especially getting comments and feedback. But I didn’t miss the pressure of taking pictures and posting about every single meal. I think I’ve known this for a while, and I have hinted at it, but posting that way wasn’t working well for me- I don’t want this to be a diet blog — I never have. I want this to be a non-obsessive, happy, and positive celebration of food and health. So I think I’m going to begin posting differently…

I will post about a  great meal I have out or cook at home, an article that I read about women’s health, a fresh market that I visit, and so on. The idea of posting every day, three meals a day just isn’t appealing for me anymore. I really enjoyed my vacation. I tried to stay active by walking a lot and swimming where I could, but we definitely all ate a lot of delicious food and we all gained a pound or two.

Being away from the blog helped me realize how much pressure put on myself to eat perfectly and stay at a “perfect”  weight… and it just doesn’t always happen. That’s life. So, in trying to do what’s best for me and become my healthiest self, I want to continue writing and being a part of this blog world that I love so much but without the kind of pressure that is unhealthy for me (I don’t judge anyone else who  wants to post things in a different way…). I hope you guys will keep reading because I so enjoy communicating with you about one of my favorite topics: food!

Argentina was an amazing country to visit and I had so much fun with my family eating delicious food, hiking in the mountains, exploring the city, and drinking lots of delicious red wine! Here are some highlights of the trip:

FOOD!

We visited produce markets in Buenos Aires,

And bought lots of good fruit for snacks.

There was delicious smoked salmon everywhere!

And very hearty bread…

lots of fresh vegetables and great salami and cured meat

And amazing, soft, flavorful cheese.

The hearts of palm were incredible — have you ever seen one so big?! (it’s that big white thing on the plate)

Our hotel had delicious homemade yogurt and museli for breakfast… with lots of fresh fruit!

The coffee was really good — I’m told — I don’t touch the stuff!

Argentina is famous for its awesome Italian food — and it definitely lived up to expectations!

Mmmm… Eggplant Parmesan!

We even had delicious sushi and Japanese food in Buenos Aires, which I  guest-posted about on Karin’s blog. I was impressed!

Seaweed salad,

Miso Salmon with veggies,

And a free dessert (some kind of custard)!

All in a very chic, simple, and beautiful Japanese restaurant.

The desert that we had for Christmas Eve dinner with the best thing I have ever tasted!

It was heaven: a thin crusted tart with vanilla custard, fresh blackberries, a raspberry purée, and vanilla ice cream. With a crunchy slice of apple on top.

Of course, yours truly found a juice bar with vegetarian wraps in Buenos Aires. Who knew? They were filled with humus and quinoa tabbouleh. Our vegetable juices were a crazy concoction made up of carrot juice and coconut milk. It was actually really good!

Of course, I also had plenty of good wine! This one was so spectacular that I had to take a picture.

Not only was it an amazing country to eat our way through, it was stunningly beautiful…

Lakes, mountains, and forests!

The city was also gorgeous…

As all tourists have to do, we saw an incredible tango show

It was steamy!

As usual, Loren and I were total dorks and went swimming everywhere we could.  Don’t we look good? HAha.

It was a truly incredible trip and I had the time of my life.

Thank you, mom and dad for an incredible trip filled with beautiful moments that I will never forget!

And I will see you guys later for some (American) food recaps this week! Hope your holiday vacation was relaxing, fun, and, of course, DELISH!

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Morning! Yesterday was a day of rest, so I didn’t go to the gym. Instead, I spent extra time in bed 🙂

I made a delicious breakfast that consisted of a wrap with scrambled eggs, raw goat’s milk cheddar, and some apricot jam. I took a picture but somehow I deleted during the day while I was fussing with my camera 😦

So I guess we’ll have to skip to lunch. We had nothing in the refrigerator, so I walked to work empty-handed. At lunchtime I picked up another delicious wrap from Zaytoon’s (means “olive’s” in arabic) a Middle Eastern Restaurant near my office. The wrap was filled with hummus, babaganoush, and tabouleh. I also ordered a small container of their pickle olive and peperocini mix and added that to my wrap.

It was deeeelish!

I also had the last of a container of pineapple that I bought last week.

I was running around all afternoon, so I didn’t have time for a snack. When I got home around 6, I was desperate for something small to tide me over until dinner. I relied on my trusty string cheese.

Since we had no veggies in the fridge, and I didn’t feel like making a TJ’s run, I gave in and ordered take-out from a Japanese place in the neighborhood. Loren and I split a bunch of rolls: california roll, a seared salmon roll, and a fantastic roll–spicy tuna with salmon, avocado, and yellowtail on top. I also got a large green salad that was much needed after a couple of days sans greens! We also split some edamame.

Puuuurty.

But dessert was definitely the best eat of the day!

What is that, you may ask? A frozen banana covered in dark chocolate from the mecca of frozen foods–TJ’s! I know, I know. You can make these at home, but for a lazy girl like me I was thrilled to see these in the store!

It did not disappoint. It was amazing. I also liked that it took a long time to eat, so I really felt like I got my sweet fix tonight!

P.S. I saw a PT today who gave me a lot of exercises for my arm and wrist. It’s finally feeling better, but not completely up to snuff, so Loren, again, helped me write the post (editor’s note: he’s pretty much the best!). Just wanted you to know that if you don’t get the usual blog comments from me, it’s not that I’m not reading your blogs–I just have doctor’s orders not to type! (But I may slip in a few comments here or there. Hehe). I love reading them all!

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Morning, guys!

My wrist is actually really bugging me this morning, so I need to lay off the typing today—> which means laying off the blogging. But I can’t stay away! (Don’t tell my mom!).

Due to wrist injury, I will make the thesis of this post quick and simple: I found a new favorite brunch spot yesterday in Brooklyn. I went out yet again to meet a friend at Vinegar Hill House, a restaurant that my little sister actually told me about. She visited a friend in BK a while back who took her there and she loved it. Well, I did too!

I mean, who wouldn’t love this plate of perfection?

That would be poached eggs over  fava bean puree, topped with cucumber, onion, and olive salad, with 2 small slices of toasted focaccia-type bread on the side. I also had half a grapefruit on the side.

It was sooooo good! The eggs were cooked perfectly and the fava bean puree added a creamy richness to the dish. I love that it was rich and satisfying but dairy free- Loren could eat it! Everything else on the menu looked amazing- as did my friend’s beans on toast. I can’t wait to go back and try more dishes!

Happy Monday… have a great start to the week!

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Good Evening! Hope you all enjoyed your weekends. It was a cold and rainy one over here, but I still managed to have some much-needed fun. The weekend also included a lot of dining out.

Yesterday began with a home-made breakfast, made with love by Loren. We used the TJ’s pumpkin pancake mix and added fresh blueberries to the mix. I even added some dark chocolate chips to some!! I topped my pancakes with cottage cheese and some home made apple butter sent to me by my close friends Billy and Sheryl (thanks Cheryl!)

They were delicious. The apple butter was awesome-tasted just like apple sauce but with a bit more cinnamon and spices.

And I took lots of pics!

Later in the day, I went into the city and met my sister for lunch and a play. We didn’t have a lot of time for lunch so we stopped at a cute little bar & grill called Acme. I was in the mood for salad, and the waiter told us that salads would be quick, so I ordered the blackened chicken salad with cajun ranch dressing on the side.

It was excellent! The chicken had lots of great smokey, spicy flavor and the dressing was really tasty, though I didn’t need much of it.

It was REALLY filling and I couldn’t finish-lots of protein!

After the play we walked a lot through the veeerrry cold streets of NY. We parted ways and I headed to Starbucks to kill some time while I was waiting to have yet another meal out with Loren and my other sister, Elizabeth.

I had a chamomile tea and small piece of dark chocolate-warmed me right up!

The three of us met at Blue Ribbon Sushi in SoHo for dinner. Blue Ribbon is known for having fresh, delicious sushi and it did not disappoint. I started off with the house salad with ginger dressing and was immediately impressed-it was one of the best salads I have had at a Japanese restaurant; the dressing was light was extremely flavorful and the salad was topped with lots of scallions and avocado.

We all split a bowl of edamame.

I ordered a spicy tuna roll with tempura flakes and a shrimp tempura roll. Both rolls were amazing and super fresh tasting. Aren’t they gorgeous?!

I had three pieces of each roll and gave the rest to Loren (he’s happy that I’m watching my portions-he definitely benefits!)

It was a really great night- and I felt really good about my choices in a day full of dining out.

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Good morning!

Firstly: thank you all soooo much for all of your supportive and helpful comments in response to yesterday’s post. You guys gave me great ideas to combat feeling down during winter, from exercising more and spending time outside, to wearing a cute outfit and primping a bit more (never thought of it!), to drinking more delicious teas, lighting “winter scented” candles, and a lot more. THANK YOU! These are the times when I am so happy I have this blog and so grateful to have so many awesome and supportive readers/ friends in the blogosphere. Especially friends who are experts in getting through the winter!

Anyway, off of my heart-felt rant, onto food!

Last night, Loren and I went to dinner for my friend Ana’s birthday. We were supposed to go to Casuella, a cheese/ wine bar in Midtown West, but the service was really snotty and they basically told us they “couldn’t seat tables over 4 for the night”… Confusing. SO, we got on our phones and started searching for places nearby. None of us felt like walking much because it was soooo cold- and luckily we found a pretty good place nearby. We went to Uncle Nick’s, a Greek restaurant with lots of room for all of us. It had a relaxed, cozy vibe and an open kitchen. It smelled great- always a good sign!

We decided to just share a bunch of appetizers and big plates. We started out with a huge Greek Salad and a Mezze Plate with 4 different dips: tzatziki, a salmon roe spread, an eggplant spread, and a potato garlic spread. They also brought a ton of delicious pita bread to the table.

I had a lot more salad but tried not to overdo it on the bread. I had 3 pita slices with the apps and decided to hold off for the big plates to come to have more. We ordered a whole grilled fish, chicken kabobs, and a big Gyro Plate.

I had bites of each, but the Gyro (made of beef and lamb I think) was definitely the best- so flavorful!

The fish:

And the chicken (really juicy and full of flavor but I was too full by this point so I only had 1 bite):

It was a nice meal- Uncle Nick’s is definitely a place I would recommend for casual group dining in that area. I was also happy that I paced myself throughout the meal and didn’t overeat, which I can sometime do when I split a lot of plates. I didn’t drink any alcohol with dinner and I think that helped a lot to keep my willpower in check!

Now off to enjoy the weekend and the cold BUT SUNNY 🙂 day. Thank you all again for your amazing tips on braving the cold and facing wintertime with a smile!

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Even though I didn’t do much this weekend, I feel like it flew by! Why does that always happen?

Yesterday was a perfect Sunday in terms of rest/ productivity- a good mix. I went to the gym in the morning, read my book while I ate breakfast, went out for a long walk and some produce shopping, went to TJ’s with Loren, cleaned up around my apartment, and went out to dinner at the BEST Japanese place with Nishant (houseguest/ friend) and Loren. And then I read some more. The Hours is amazing- I can’t believe I haven’t read it yet. I loooove Virginia Woolf’s work, so the book is perfect for me.

What wasn’t so great about yesterday was going through my winter sweaters and discovering moths/ larvae/ holes in some of my favorite sweaters. And having to throw them out. And pick larvae off my clothes. I did not grow up in the Northeast and had no idea moths could do such a thing. Grooooosss.

Breakfast yesterday was a big bowl of “holiday oats”. Basically, just my usual pumpkin oats with some dried cranberries on top. Festive, no?

I also made one of my favorite lunches: tuna salad with crackers and carrots. It is very simple, but definitely comfort food for me. My mom used to make us the best tuna salad- all the time. It feels like home!

I now use mayo made from olive oil- its very good!

My post-TJ run snacks included some indulgent little goodies:

These mini ice cream sandwiches are delicious and only 120 calories each! (They are also quite small). Perfect for a snack or small dessert.

I also had some watermelon and pineapple slices (I know, I know… I’m bad. Not local, not at all).

And later we went to dinner at Hibino in Brooklyn. The food here, as always, was amazing- but the service last night was really bad- way too slow. And our waitress was not so nice.

But, like I said, the food was awesome!

I got a seaweed salad which had all kinds of seaweed in it (I ate most of it- some were a little too “sea-ish” for me!) and we split  an order of asparagus tempura. Yum!

And I had some “pressed sushi”. One had cooked mackarel with shisho sauce on top; the other was tuna with a bit of avocado and shisho. They were both incredible- so fresh tasting. The tuna melted in my mouth.

Even though the servie wasn’t that great, the food made up for it (and I am usually not so forgiving). Hibino is definitely my favorite sushi joint around!

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Good morning, all!

Does anyone find that when it gets to Thursday in the week you just become happier? Thursday and Friday are my happy days because the weekend is so close! It’s not that I mind work at all (I have a pretty cool boss/ office environment and love the work that we do) and there are plenty of days that I really enjoy, I just look forward to downtime, hanging out with Loren at home and seeing friends. So YAY for Thursday!

Yesterday morning I woke up and dragged my booty to the gym. My neck felt so much better after the day of massage/ rest but I felt it was better to ease of weights for a few days and just do cardio and stretching. I did 30 minutes on the elliptical and 10 minutes on the bike. I like to mix it up when I get bored!

I actually had some leftover oats from Tuesday’s breakfast in the fridge because I had made 2 servings. I reheated that in the microwave and made myself a plate of fruit- a plum and some sliced pineapple.

I ended up mixing it all together and adding some more cold almond milk- it was a cold hot cereal!

I came home for lunch and made an awesome plate: A turkey, salami, lettuce, and goat cheese sandwich on Ezekial bread with a side of carrots, celery, and a few natural corn chips.

I love making lunch at home. I get to add so many fresh veggies to my plate! This sandwich was awesome, too. I spread lots of honey mustard on it.

I definitely went back for a few more chips, too… Not gonna lie. One of the downsides of eating lunch at home: the pantry is right there!

Snacks yesterday included a chocolate PURE bar, which was soooo good. All natural, vegan- and tastes JUST like a brownie.

And another clementine!

I worked from 5-9 and then Loren and I met up to go to a concert. His best friend from home is in an awesome band called The Shaky Hands. They have just finished touring for 2 months in Europe and are now doing a 2 week tour in the US, heading back to Portland (OR) where they are based.

Before the show, we wanted to grab something quick, so we stopped at a little Mexican place in the hood where you get your food in 5 minutes! I ordered bean and chicken enchiladas in a verde sauce. They came with guacamole and sour cream on top and rice and beans on the side.

It was sooo good! I ate it all, except for the rice- passed that onto Loren. The verde sauce was the star: very flavorful, very spicy!

The concert was great! I love these guys and always enjoy seeing them play every time they come to NYC.  They are very talented and put on a great show with lots of good energy!

We got home way too late for a weeknight, but, oh well- it was worth it. And its good to break up the routine every once in a while.

Now, back to it! Have a wonderful day!

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