Wednesday, September 29, 2010

What do you do in Syracuse, NY?


What do you do in Syracuse, NY? Not much to be honest with you. I arrived, went for a walk, had dinner, and then it was bedtime for this chica. I was tired from all of the driving. I drank lots of OJ trying to fend off this cold. I woke up this morning feeling much better than yesterday but my nose is still very runny and drippy. Gross I know! I have tons of kleenex in my purse.


We went to a yummy Italian restaurant right next door to the hotel called Grimaldi's. It is an instution in the area. We a few in Syracuse and one in Utica. I am not sure where the orginal started. I brought the camera for pictures and even warned my co-worker that I would be snapping photos but low and behold I completely forgot about it till the bill came. At the point there was not much left to photograph. I think it was probably for the best though since our waiter was one strange man. I am sure if he saw me taking pictures he would have made quite the deal about it.





Tonight I am in Rutland, VT on the way to Middlebury College. There is the cutest restaurant here that I always try to go to when I am in the area. Its called Table 24. I had the tomato fennel soup and the classic Table 24 chicken. I was running a bit behind and couldn't decide how I wanted to handle dinnner. Normally when I am by myself I pick a restaurant and get take out. I much prefer eating at the hotel then by myself. Because I arrived much later than I had hoped I went straight to the restaurant. I had the soup there while I waited for the mealthus no pictures. I ordered the chicken to go and the timing was perfect. It was ready when I finished the soup. This was the cutest litte to-go container I have ever had.


The soup was thick and creamy. Perfect for my runny nose. The chicken was good but had a bit too much sauce. Sadly it was packaged with my sweet potato fries at the bottom. They got all soggy! I cannot wait to be home again tomorrow night. Hopefully I make it through this wicked tropical storm they claim will be taking over the east coast.
.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Packing

I am off again for work to the dreaded Syracuse, NY and then to Middlebury, VT. Actually neither are that bad. There are ample good restaurants near the hotels and schools, but the ride is so long. I have gotten used to flying right now so I much prefer being able to read or do work on the plane. I feel so unproductive in the car.



Anyway, here is the breakfast that hopefully will fuel me right up through the day. I am loving oatmeal right now. It is so filling and it makes me all warm on the inside. I spice it up with some cinnamon and today with some almond butter. I just got raisins at the store though so you know what is coming next time.

I hope it stays cool so I can continue to eat something other than smoothies. OK off to finish packing. I slacked quite a bit last night in my preparations for this trip. I have a feeling though after waking up that I might be getting a cold. I am wishing this bowl of warm oats will protect me.

Monday, September 27, 2010

The last meal

It's Monday and yet again I am preparing for another work trip. Jordan and I are pretty stubburn though of eating a home cook meals on nights when we are both here. Sadly tonight is the only day this week which fits into that category so here we are.


Jordan is in charge of supper and I have gotten him some nice steaks to cook up. He made some yummy mashed potatoes to go with them and it was quite a meal for Monday night. Did you notice our new pretty plates? It has been so much fun to use our new things. Thank you so much for everything. I will post more pictures of some of them soon enough.
Today was wierd. It was somewhat hot and somewhat cool. It was dark and gloomy but didn't rain nearly as much as was predicted. The forecast for tonight is suppose to be getting warmer till morning - very strange.
Our evening plans were to go to Staples cause I had a $3 dollar coupon. I hate to have something like that go to waste we we trucked the 10 minute ride to find something to buy. Jordan wanted a desk but really he just wants another place to put things. It would become the new storage place and we just don't have room. He has wanted an umbrella for quite sometime to use for work. I suggested this cause yes Staples does have umbrellas. After going through each design very intentively he came to the opinion that Staples is probably not the best place to get an umbrella. Since it was getting late we ended up getting a Mr. Clean surface cleaner for the kitchen. This was actually something we needed and with the coupon it only cost $.52. I love a deal and this was one. Oh for Monday night entertainment.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Trying something new





After weeks of running around I finally felt like today I had nothing today. I was almost bored. The morning consisted of gym time, grocery shopping and then a trip to the bigger city nearby of Milford for some Trader Joe action. We needed coffee and nuts. There seems to be nowhere close by to get bulk items. Dare I say something I miss about New York? Anyway in Milford there is a Whole Foods and Trader Joe's within a mile of each other. Yikes! I could do some serious damage at both places. Today Jordan was with me though so he limits my crazy buying a bit. We skipped Whole Foods cause I really only needed a mix of nuts and Trader Joe's has a good variety at good prices. We got cashews, peanuts, almonds, and walnuts - all 50% of the salt. I don't like salt and Jordan loves it. Ah, the compromises of marriage. We also picked up crunchy peanut butter and almond butter. Gotta love the butter prices at Trader Joe's. Anyway as always when Jordan comes grocery shopping with me we end up with a dessert. He quickly eyed this raspberry tart.

It was pretty good but completely ruined my plans to make sugar cookies. Oh well, I will save that for next weekend.


After a walk in the afternoon on the shore, some laundry and a bit of reading. Yes, I was even able to fit in some pleasure reading. It was time for dinner. Here is what some searching online found.


Chicken Cacciatore
From Ellie Krieger on Food Network.com


Ingredients:
4 skinless chicken breast halves on the bone, about 2 pounds
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1/2 pound white mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can whole tomatoes in juice, chopped and juice reserved
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes or more to taste


Directions
Rinse the chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.

Heat the oil in a saute pan over moderately-high heat. Brown the chicken on both sides, about 8 minutes. Remove the chicken.

Reduce the heat to moderate. Add the onion and pepper, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms begin to brown. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add the wine and cook until reduced by half. Add the tomatoes and juice, oregano, red pepper flakes and 1/4 teaspoon of salt and simmer the mixture covered for 10 minutes.

Return the chicken breasts to the pan and simmer, covered, until the chicken is just done, about 20 minutes longer.









It was pretty good. The sauce was a bit spicy but that is how I make all of my sauces. I used 3/4LB of chicken tenders so I think it was lacking a bit of the substance. I also used diced tomatoes instead of whole. I didn't have any canned whole tomatoes and it seemed like an unnecessary step to have to cut up the whole tomatoes. Overall I was happy with how it came out. I wonder if it would not have seemed so Italian if I served it with polenta. Maybe next time....

Saturday, September 25, 2010

P to the OTATO

Its Saturday and I have been busy trying to organize the apartment a bit. After 30 minutes of redoing the kitchen I had to call it quits. I went to a few tag sales and then an estate sale with a friend from work. I was a bit uncomfortable with the estate sale. I mean you are walking through some one's house who is no longer there. I scored some super fun mugs from one of the tag sales though.
Then it was time for dinner. Jordan and I have not had dinner together, a home cooked meal since last Sunday. That was 6 days ago and way too long. So tonight we had a fine meal Jordan whipped up.

Since he made it I don't have a recipe. He wanted buffalo chicken. When he started to describe the ingredients we needed - lots of butter, and how he was planning on cooking it - fried, I raised my eyebrows. For me dinner at home is a control arena where I can limit the nastiness of unhealthy ingredients and cooking methods. This meal was not one of those meals. As a compromise we came up with this....

It was super good. Jordan liked it and a new recipe can be added to the "good" list. I love oven baked potatoes as the starch. I have learned to enjoy potatoes after living with Jordan. They have lots of good nutrients but the French fry version is just not worth it for the most part. I am exhausted and feel like I could fall asleep any minute. Adieu!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Breathe

This week was hectic. I was in Clemson, SC till Wednesday night. Jordan was gone Wednesday and Thursday in Pittsburgh. Work in general is just really busy right now whether or not I am in the office or traveling. Basically that means this is what has been for dinner.

I don't know what I was thinking really when I got this. Jordan was in heaven. I just had a belly ache. I have had some form of pizza every day at least once for the last week or two. I am ready to move on.

Tonight I attempted to be healthy and made this ham and brie sandwich, lots of veggies and some hummus.

It was good but no take out. I have mentioned before that once you get on the kick of eating out it is really hard to come back to getting groceries and planning meals. Being so busy it has been even harder.

This weekend however, I am going to try two new recipes for dinner. I got a lot done this past week and hopefully I will a bit less busy.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Canopy Oh My

This is the last of the honeymoon. Although, I miss it dearly I am ready to move on. After all it has been almost a month. Yikes, the time has flown by!


video

That was the tour guide showing what the perspective of the rider is like. He actually had way more fun than me. It was an alright experience but let me tell you it was HIGH up. I am not scared of heights but I do certainly feel much better with two feet on the ground. I know the whole point is to enjoy the scenery and nature but when even I went for a ride I was looking straight ahead to the destination. This couldn't be more deeper as normally I look to the end goal rather than enjoying the ride for most things in life.

video

This was Jordan and I together. All of the other rides we were separate but the guide insisted that we try one together. Basically I said yes to this so he would stop asking me to go upside down. Forgive our appearances. It was so so so hot and humid that day even though we were in the shade it felt like 100 degrees. The real temperature was pretty close to that.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Stuck in A Rut

We have been back from the honeymoon now almost 3 weeks. We have both been traveling a bunch for work. We have barely gotten to spend more than 3 consecutive days in a row together. What does this mean for our cooking? Well some take-out here and there. And lots of quick easy stand by dinners.

We are stuck in a rut. The food we make is good. That is never a problem with me and Jordan. However, I am getting kind of sick of it. We haven't been able to sit down and experiment with something new in a long time. Its the same old, same old nowadays.

Its starting to get cool out and I am looking forward to baking and soup making. What is your favorite meal for the fall?

I am going to be looking over my cookbooks when I am back in the apartment and come up with some new and exciting dishes to whip up.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

MOOOOOO! Guilford Fair

Excuse me....what day is it? I cannot believe it is Sunday evening already. This weekend flew by. Saturday we did errand after errand. I find it funny how I cleaned in the morning and then we went out and got a whole bunch of stuff only to make new piles in the apartment which need to be cleaned and organized. It seems like a never ending story these days.

We took a big step in married life and got a joint bank account. Yikes is all I have to say.

Then we went to the Guilford Fair. Since we live here now we want to experience everything Guilford has to offer. Well here you go...
I thought the tail was absolutely adorable.


It belonged to one of these little fellows.

The sheep were quietly content in there little wraps.

The cows went moo and Jordan was upset this was as close as we could get to them. Cows are his favorites.

We saw some mighty big pumpkins. And a lot of other produce with ribbons. It kind of ruin the mystique of the winning though when Bishop's Orchard won most of the blue ribbons. I like to think things like this come from someone's backyard.

My favorite was the poultry. They were all locked up in cages just like they should be when I am around. This guy was super tired I guess from all of the competitions.
There was 3 animal tents, 2 craft and produce tents, and a little area for tracker competitions. The rest was the carnival and food area. It was a cute town fair. And I am glad we went. It was no comparison though to the Iowa State fair.







Friday, September 17, 2010

Fishing

One night we had a delicious dinner of fish. It was so so so good.


Want to know how we came to eat it?
I knew I married him for good reason....he can catch us some dinner. Unfortunately it was red tide so the bigger fish were no where to be found. We did a lot of bottom fishing which were smaller fish. We caught a whole bucket full of snapper and grouper.


Work those muscles.

A bit of beer to relax with. This though occurred before much of the hard work took place.


Our boat is out there somewhere.

I had a good time too. I even reeled in a pole twice. Those suckers are really heavy. I used the chair to help. Jordan used the trustee belt. I think next time I might sit out. The trip was fun but the waves were super big. Basically I had a nice boat ride under the canopy. Every time I tried to get up and move around the waves really got to me.





Thursday, September 16, 2010

Tabacon Resort and Hot Springs

It's cold and rainy outside. I got back from Michigan last night and Jordan is arriving from Minnesota tonight. The last 3 days have gone by very fast but very slow as well. I cannot wait to see Jordan again. However, work seems to be steadily flowing out of my ears. I think I could work straight through this weekend and still not get it all done. And I am not talking about things that would be nice to get done but rather very pressing deadline type matters that need to be done before next weeks. Yikes! I just don't want to think about it.

Again I will go back to happier times. This is Jordan and I in the hot springs. We are in the steam somewhere. It was so hot in that water. I felt like I was one of the lobsters we ate at the wedding. I might have to rethink eating lobster again...probably not but it was at times uncomfortable.
All over the hot springs side of the resort were these little pools you could go in and out of. They were so pretty. I think I enjoyed looking at them a bit more than actually being in the hot water. We sought out the pools in the shade which were much cooler than the ones in the sun.


Again we ate very well.... Sea bass ceviche. Surf and Turf skewers...

And there is the pretty volcano. This was clear shot. A lot of the time it was covered in clouds. And occasionally there was be smoke. I kind of thought it would be cool to see a small explosion but the signs throughout warning of high risk of volcanic activity were a bit scary.


So tomorrow is Friday. I have a ton to get done. Hopefully I will find it in me to get it all done. It looks like an early morning.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Welcome to Paradise

Our honeymoon started with a bottle of champagne on the plane.



This will explain why I can say we definitely binge ate in Costa Rica. The food was every where and really really good!
I am trying to speed through these as fast as possible because it this point the honeymoon seems so long ago. However, I am kind of enjoying thinking about all of the fun we had in Costa Rica. When can we go back? Every place we stayed (only 2) greet us with a pretty fruity cocktail. Clearly Jordan is covering up the pretty part but it sure was good!



Our first night at the Tabacon Hot Springs Resort was at Los Toscanes. We had planned this in advance and knew it was probably going to be the best meal the whole trip. I figured we might as well jump right into the fun.
We started off with the house special of passion fruit margarita's. I write more about passion fruit soon. It is quite a strange thing, but the margarita's were awesome. I don't normally like margarita's cause I don't enjoy lemon and lime taste in general. This however was very sweet and unique in flavor and I sucked mine right down.
There was so many things on the menu that we wanted to sample our strategy was to get two appetizers, two entrees, and two desserts - split everything. First up was the scallops.


We also got a duo of Tuna. I love how the food was plated, what is more tropical then eating out of a coconut?


At this point Jordan and I knew we were in for a treat. The entrees were beef medallions with cheese polenta and foies gras. Yum, yum, yum. Jordan's favor part was that you could order beef rare and they would actually cook it rare.


The other dish was lamb chops. Again, yum, yum, yum!


Pretty much everywhere we went they knew we were on our honeymoon. It was somewhat bizzarre like we had a big sign on our foreheads. I won't complain though since we scored some pretty good perks because of it.


Our dessert was souffle and custard with berries. They wrote Happy Honeymoon in chocolate. It was so super cute and the first of many fun nights!








Monday, September 13, 2010

Eat, Drink, and Be MARRIED!

I am off to Michigan today for work. No down time for me in the next few months. Hopefully I will get to check out some cool, yummy places....hopefully.


If not, I will just have to remember this day....






To read more about the wedding go to Living like the Kings There are 3 whole posts about the wedding events. Thanks Kat!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Binge again

Just when I thought all of the feasting was done...

This was the cake Jordan got for my birthday from Take the Cake in Guilford, CT. It was the chocolate coconut cake and boy was it delicious. The chocolate was so rich and the coconut was so tropical. They must have known about Costa Rica because they added the pretty little flower.

The day started off very well intentioned. I decided that since we had be splurging so much with the honeymoon adventures I just wanted a low key dinner of some sushi take out. Jordan decided on some appetizers and soon we were full. The sushi part was a least healthy. All I know is that a tempura fried sweet potato is so divinely delicious. I will probably have to try it again soon.
Today was recovering from the sweetness of the cake and writing thank you notes. My parents swung by to drop off the rest of the wedding gifts and miscellaneous stuff left behind at their house. It was great to go over everything that has happen in the past couple of weeks. It makes me exhausted thinking about it. It is good to be back in the apartment though and just living again....no more planning. Although I must say I am getting excited about decorating with all of our fun new things.


Friday, September 10, 2010

Rehearsal dinner, Saltwater Grille

Happy Birthday to me! No this is not my birthday cake but a yummy delicious dessert from the rehearsal dinner.

It's my birthday. About six months ago I would have never guess this day would come. The wedding always seemed like such a distance off. Even the day of I was referring to it happening tomorrow. Normally I get very excited for my birthday. I start anticipating it weeks even a month in advance. This year, I am super excited but it seems to have snuck up on me. It was a few days into September before I realized my birthday was so soon in the future. Anyway here we are, and I am not sure how much more celebrating my body can do right now. I am sure I will manage somehow.

Till the birthday plans are finalized here are some photos of the small rehearsal dinner at the Saltwater Grille. It is oh so yummy and the views of Portland Harbor are magnificent.



Jordan's admiring his dinner. Can you guess what it could be?

Meat and potatoes, what else is there?


I had a lobster bisque and Caesar salad. It was after all the night before the wedding. The soup was super rich and creamy though. I don't think it did me any favors getting me to fit into the dress.




All in all it was a wonderful dinner. We had great food, great drink and great people to enjoy.

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