Monday, August 13, 2012

Federal Donuts

My parents kept telling me about this donut place in Philly and to be quite frank, I didn't see what the big deal was, donuts. I'm not a huge donut fan. Then we got there and its this small hole in the wall place (love places like that) that also makes fried chicken?!!
What makes this place special is they have "fancy donuts" that change every so often with crazy flavors like fig on fig or creamsicle. Then they make fresh fried donuts to order.

Holy cow, they were good. Strawberry rhubarb pie and pomegranate nutella were my top 2 favs. This place just inspired me to take my baking to the next level. Watch out!!


I love tapas! Small plates, but I always manage to over eat. Amada in the new Casino, Revel is owned by iron chef, Jose Garces. My family has let me be in charge of their stomach's and so far I've done pretty well. That night we put ourselves in the chef's hands deciding to go with the Chef's selection of tapas and wine pairing. Amazing!

Just enjoy the photos. The colors and shapes are just beautiful. I can't even explain how wonderful everything tasted!

This last photo was the house made donuts with saffron, vanilla, and brown sugar. I think I was in heaven. The honey was infused in house with lavender. This place was an amazing treat! Don't pass it up!

Bizarre Foods Featuring Me!

So the end of July I returned to good ol' Jersey! The family and I went down to Atlantic City for the Food and Wine Festival. There was one event I just could not pass up-The Bizarre Brunch with Andrew Zimmern! (If the name doesn't ring a bell, its the guy on the travel channel who eats things that you probably never wished upon your worst enemy in grade school)
My family and I had no idea what to expect. My mom just kept coming up with random things like monkey brains or animal testicals. Well she was right about the latter. When we first arrived it looked like a normal buffet with champagne and omelets until you took a closer look.
There were signature dishes that I had to search out within the buffet. I decided to skip the tongue-tried that in China already. I did eat everything on that list though!
Crickets on french toast....why not?! They were pretty crunchy. The lambs liver was extra soft. Just as I was thinking I had conquered the worst, we were pleasantly surprised when Zimmern announced each table would be getting a special small plate with more goodies!

From left to right-Chicken Feet, frog legs, Pork ribs, and in the back-Pork Ball. My least favorite were the chicken feet because there was not any meat. I don't even like eating chicken skin and to think about the feet skin I shiver. Frog legs were pretty yummy I think I would try them again. The pork ball...just the thought...made me make this face...
Believe it or not it wasn't really that bad. I was just hamming it up for the camera. I had a great time trying all the foods and washed it down with some ice cold adult chocolate milk!
After enjoying our delicacies I even went over a talked with the Bizarre Food man himself, Andrew Zimmern.

Happy Eating!!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Keep Austin Weird

Going back in time a bit, I got sent to Austin, Texas for work a few months back, and loved it! Not sure what to expect, visions of cowboys danced in my head with a long southern draw that I wouldn't understand. It was almost the opposite, Austin, was this hip, chic, urban place I did not want to leave.

After arriving I headed to get settled at my hotel, The San Jose. My boss suggested I stay here and it looked pretty cool online. Well, it was more than cool. The building was covered in ivy and the whole feel of the place was very laid back and relaxing, I was on Texas Time now. Each room had it's own entrance not a shared hallway. The decor was modern and chic. Really could I just pick this place up and move it back to Fort Lauderdale.

Now to feed my stomach. I asked for a few local recommendations and I ended up at Hopdoddy, a burger bar. where everything is made in house. I really enjoy places like this. I ended up with the GREEK burger-Lamb, Feta Cheese, Arugula, Pickled Red Onions, Tomato, Cucumber, Tzatziki Sauce. Oh and the seasonal peach cobbler milkshake!!!! AMAZING! Get there early because there will be a line!

Next I headed down Congress Street to check out the shops and sites. I found Allen's Boots! Cowboys?
Yes! Real boots? Yes! There were rows and rows of boots, every shape, size, and color. Just leave me in here for a bit to cool off and enjoy the country music. And ofcourse, buy my first official cowboy boots. If you didn't know when I was young, I was obsessed with country style, I had a horse and a goat. So I decided on a pair of Tony Lucchese boots, which are made right in Texas. 
After my purchase, I headed down to the state capital building to learn a bit about the history of Texas. 
My next day in Texas, was all work related, a new Whole Foods was opening in Arbor Trails! Beautiful store. Did you know Whole Foods originated in Austin, Texas??
I think there must of been something in the water, because I just wanted to enjoy everything Texan. Texas tea, Texas BBQ, and I don't even like red meat. 

Overall, I wish I could have extended my trip. I had a wonderful time and the people were just so welcoming. Austin had its strange and weird things, but that is what made it quirky and had me coming back for more! Till next time-Keep Austin Weird!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Busy Little Bee

Hello Hello Hello!!

 I've been cooking, eating, and traveling.... so I will be updating you with my recent experiments and where I have been! Stay tuned!