Gluten free cookies from Mother’s Market

This weekend I tried something new from Mother’s Market gluten free aisle: cookies. I’m a cookie fanatic so a good cookie is hard to come by.

First off: the oatmeal raisin cookie
This cookie tasted just like any other oatmeal raisin cookie bursting with cinnamon flavor and chunks of raisins. Rather than being soft these cookies had a bit of a crunch to it. I liked it, it gave the cookie some character.

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Second: the chocolate chip cookie.
First bite was good but the second bite disappointed. The salt to sugar ratio was a little confusing. It almost had a bit of a sour after taste and the cookie had a pretty airy texture.

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Overall, I would definitely recommend the oatmeal raisin cookie. I loved the packaging of these cookies and how the ingredients were labeled clearly on the front.

These cookies also came from a local bakery in Laguna Beach, CA which made me happy that I was able to support them. Maybe I will have to venture out that way and visit the actual bakery!

I think it’s time for me to create my own rendition of gluten free cookies…

The future of Starbucks?

Every foodie loves a good cup of coffee…well except for me. I’m not a fan of coffee unless it’s blended in to a frappe drowned in sugar and whip creme.

I was shown this article and I found it so entertaining. The future of Starbucks is predicted to be a more tea bar like atmosphere and the first teavana tea bar has already opened up in the upper east side of New York City. I love myself a good cup of tea so I can’t wait to see this expand!

I really think we are living in a society where health is consuming a larger priority in our lives. The change from coffee to tea would therefore make sense. (Of course, nothing in excess isn’t good including tea).

What do you think about this change? Do you think Starbucks tea shops will survive?

Check out the link below for pictures and commentary on the new zen tea bars which I’m sure will soon pop up on every street corner just as it’s coffee shops have!
Starbucks Tea Bar

Pumpkin Bread

This weekend I decided to welcome in the fall season with some good ol’ pumpkin bread. I didn’t have a recipe so I resorted to google. I typed in the search bar “pumpkin bread” and chose the first one. Crazy right? Not really, because it had 5 stars and enough reviews to allow me to willingly try it! Thank you anonymous from allrecipes.com, I will be sure to give thanks to you this Thanksgiving!

Because snapshotting is so awesome the recipe is as follows:

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So, what stood out most to me about this recipe was that the sugar was combined with the liquid ingredients and the flour and spices were combined in a separate bowl! I think this made a difference because it most pumpkin bread recipes all dry ingredients are combined and the pumpkin purée is left in its own solitary bowl…lonely.

Liquid ingredients, pumpkin purée and sugar:

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Dry ingredients:

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After mixing each bowl well enough, I then divided the batter into 3 loaf pans. It was the perfect amount of batter! I placed them on a cookie sheet so they would cool evenly and popped them in the oven for about 60 minutes even though it called for 50 minutes. It all depends how your oven works.

The end result:

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The bread came out smelling like pure pumpkin on a thanksgiving night! I was pleasantly surprised how moist the bread was. It cooked evenly from the inside and out. Something unique about this recipe was the fact that no baking powder was used yet the bread still arose to a supreme height!

This bread wasn’t too sweet and I could distinguish the nutmeg, cinnamon, and crushed cloves which is sometimes overruled by the amount of sugar used! My tip for you is to slice up your 3 day old bread, spread some butter on it, and put it in the microwave for 15 seconds and BAM! You’ll thank me later 🙂

Bruxie

This weekend, Steven and I decided to take a stroll through old town orange, chapman university, and grab a bite to eat. Both of us love waffles so we agreed on Bruxie- a cute little waffle shack right across from Chapman U.

Bruxie doesn’t just serve you a plain old waffle but a waffle SANDWICH. A Belgian waffle is used as the bread and it is paired with seasonal ingredients both savory and sweet. Great for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert the menu spans from a simple Pb&J waffle sandwich to an odd pulled pork waffle sandwich which is so oddly delicious.

I’ve been a Bruxie go’er since they opened their first restaraunt( if I may call it that) in orange and within the past couple years they have expanded to Brea, Chino Hills, Rancho Santa Margarita, Huntington Beach, irvine, and soon enough Costa Mesa. This place is the epitome of entrepreneurship at its finest!
http://youtu.be/8UTgH_PPQWk

Something unique about Bruxie is that they serve old fashioned cane sugar sodas and Wisconsin frozen custard.

For dinner I decided on the classic buttermilk fried chicken and waffle which comes served inside a golden brown, airy, sweet Belgian waffle atop cider slaw and chili honey which gives the sweetness a little spice! The only con about this is that you have to pay an extra $1 for the real Vermont maple syrup. BUT, they do have pure agave syrup for free which tastes just as good to me!

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Steven and I split waffle fries which were pretty good and I HIGHLY recommend the strawberry lemonade. It’s sweet enough to hydrate you but not too sweet that you can’t finish your meal! Steven decided on the Bruxie burger. A burger inside of a waffle? GENIUS. Well, until we realized when we were done eating that they don’t ask how you would like your meat cooked anymore…unfortunately his was undercooked and he felt a little sick after. So I would say if you order this to make sure you tell them to cook it through enough!

As we were leaving they had some of there pumpkin flavors up as Thanksgiving is quickly approaching. I’ll be back to try the pumpkin Bruxie with candied pecans. My mouth is watering already…

So, yes, Bruxie this Thanksgiving I will be thankful for you and your “Bold Fold”.

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Here’s a link to the website in case any of you other foodies out there want to check out the menu: http://bruxie.com

Meads Green Door Cafe

I was determined to make my next post something fairly healthy and I’m pretty sure I accomplished that.

This past week I went to lunch with my uncle and boyfriend. My uncle is vegan so I like to hear about the places he goes to eat and sometimes I like to try them. (Hi John).

We decided to go to Meads Green Door cafe in orange. Meads is a vegetarian cafe, coffee house and juice bar all in one! It’s also family owned which makes me all happy inside. It is right outside the orange circle but I still managed to get lost. I really enjoyed the decor at meads. As you can imagine, they have unique doors everywhere and vintage knobs everywhere so you still get the downtown orange vibe. Inside they have old chairs, and even an indoor side patio with tables which also connects to an art gallery!

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I decided on the breakfast stack which was on multigrain bread (I love bread). The bread wasn’t too grainy and I could still taste the rosemary! Inside the sandwich was a fried egg which you can substitute for tofu, arugula, tomato, pepper jack cheese, FAKE BACON (which I honestly prefer more than real bacon) and a dijonnaise sauce. Seriously…this is so delicious. Everything just blends well together and the fried egg is cooked enough on the inside that the yolk doesn’t come spewing out and there’s a mess everywhere.

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My uncle decided on a healthier option: kale salad. It looked delicious but I didn’t try though I did take a picture! We also all had a piece of the pistachio cake. FANTASTIC. You could actually taste real pistachios…no preservatives in that one.

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We enjoyed our meal across from the Restauraunt on a little patio. A+ for ambience.

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Clam Chowder&Crispy Corn Dogs

Weird combination? Yes, i know. As an annual pass holder to Disneyland the pacific wharf clam chowder bread bowl and the Main Street hand dipped corn dog are my favorite indulgences.

I only have 2 weeks left until my pass expires so it was time to experience my favorite parts of Disneyland and California Adventure one more time.

First off, the clam chowder bread bowl…where to start? The sourdough bread is made fresh daily and they even give bakery tours now (you get a free piece of sourdough, which is the only reason I go). The clam chowder is creamy not watery which most places tend to lean towards. Since I can’t travel to San Francisco when I’m craving clam chowder, this will have to do. The bread is still warm when it is served to you and the steaming soup filled with potatoes, clams, and celery makes for one heck of a meal!

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The crispiness of the outside of the bread bowl is another great touch! I love everything about this.

Next up…a hand dipped fried corn dog. The batter that they make is sweet yet the hot dog gives it the saltiness to balance out a perfect combination. I could totally eat this without any condiments like ketchup or mustard because there is already so much flavor. $6 for a corn dog in Cali adventure is also not so bad compared to the ones on Main Street and you don’t have to wait in the dreaded 30 minute+ line!

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Here’s a picture for fun…of the view I had while enjoying my corn dog.

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I think it’s time to detox…my next post must be healthy, it must be healthy, it must be healthy…I said it 3 times, it has to come true now right? 🙂

How do You Mac&Cheese?

How do You Mac&Cheese?

Out of any comfort food, maccaroni and cheese would haul in first place by a mile. While i have tried some good and bad ones and even attempted to make my own in the crock pot, which you know… wasn’t too bad, I’m always looking for new recipes or places to fill this craving! I love checking out yahoo news for stuff like this link. While most of these places listed are outside of California, I hope someday to spontaneously be able to hop on a plane and become a critique for the best mac & cheese in the world for a day or two! 

Ho sum bistro: a califoriental cuisine

Any time I go down to Newport Beach, I have to make a stop at my favorite little Asian fusion Restauraunt. Their Asian chicken salad is out of this world. It is so simple yet the ginger dressing that saturates the lettuce, chicken, and crunchy noodles has a tang and spice that will keep you wanting more. While, some people get sick of the same foods, I could eat this everyday for the rest of my life and be totally content.

The ho sum chicken salad comes in a half order or a large order. 2 people are easily able to split the large order and at only $9.25 it is a total steal. They even have lunch specials during the week for quite a bargain and you get their fried rice which I also recommend. The amount of food you get is another perk. The salad isn’t topped off at the edge of the bowl but rather forms a mountain! It’s amazing and hands down my favorite place to go in Orange County.

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jnEQFjY3w-E