Monthly Archives: September 2012

Dining Out in Green Bay Wisconsin!

Welcome Back!

Just in case you should ever find yourself in Green Bay Wisconsin, I have checked out the dining scene there and have a full report!

My dad is a lifetime fan of the Green Bay Packers and had never been to see The Frozen Tundra!

So after lots of insisting, off we went.

tracy plane

This is my dad.

This is pretty much the look that was on his face from the moment we boarded the plane until we touched back down in Nashville after a 4 day getaway.

After we got our rental car in  Milwaukee,  we stopped at a hole in the wall  of sorts for lunch.

Philly Sign

The Philly Way did not disappoint.

Philly

These Philly Cheese Steaks were scrumptious!

From there we headed up the coast of Lake Michigan and stopped off in Sheboygan to see what we could see.

Shab Lighthouse

Shab boats

When we arrived in Green Bay we headed to Hinterland Brewery and Restaurant.  This ended up being our favorite restaurant in Green Bay. Our waiter, Tyler, was awesome too!

hinter beers

Their beer is fantastic! From L to R:  Oktoberfest, Amber, IPA. Yum!

hinter crab

Crab cake.

hinter pizza

This was the best crust we had ever tasted. Tyler said they use Double O High Gluten Flour.

hinter quail

Quail.

hampton

We got really excited about the marquee at the Hampton Inn.

The next morning we cruised the town and had breakfast at a neat spot called the White Dog Black Cat.

Funky decor and friendly service made this a great spot.

black cat bloody

And who can pass up a Bloody Mary with a Slim Jim in it?  I did not order this but it was delicious.

black cat fritatta

I had the fritatta that came with hash browns. I am not usually a hash brown person but these were out of this world!

The trip was also full of more food (burgers with butter?) and more breweries.

krolls burger

Kroll’s West is a burger joint with beer and milkshakes. We at here twice so that says something, right? The second time I did leave the butter off the burger but the other diners said the whole menu was just as good as the burgers. They also have plenty of TV’s and a full bar if you want to watch an away game.

It is right next door to the stadium and the friendly service from Desiree was great!

title brews

After all this eating,  IT WAS TIME…….

lambeau

To visit what I have to believe is the greatest football stadium on earth.

In fact, because of this tour I am going to tour all the NFL stadiums I can to find out if any others can even compare. From what I can find though only 7 others offer tours?!?! Suggestions please!

logo

This team is full of so much history and has such interesting stories dating back 94 years!

If you every find yourself in Green Bay you really must experience this first hand.  Unforgettable.

I have always pulled for them because of my dad but now I think I might just be a fan on my own.

stadium

The stadium.

field

The field 🙂 And a cheesy picture.

jersey

Aaron’s super bowl uniform.

I had always wondered why they were named the packers. Now it all makes sense! The original team was sponsored by Acme Packing company, a meat packing plant.

super bowl

The Superbowl room.

cheese head

One happy cheese head.

The bar where we watched the game was packed 2 hours before kickoff. Though the game didn’t end as it should have 😉 the trip was the ultimate success.

GO. PACK. GO.

WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE NFL TEAM?

Last week I would have said Green Bay and The Titans. Now, I would just say Green Bay!

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Grilled Fish with Shallot Sauce

fish header

I should go ahead and admit what a huge fan I am of Brussels sprouts. They are in my top 5 vegetables of all time. I’m pretty much a fan of any green vegetable. I love broccoli, spinach, green beans, okra, greens, kale and most lettuce. Sometimes if we are having a meal that doesn’t include something green, I will eat a big bowl of sauteed spinach before dinner. Don’t judge me.

Having said that, when you make this dish you don’t have to put them on top of the fish, but I think you should. You could also use broccoli if you’re not a fan of the sprouts! Any vegetable with this sauce would be delicious.

fish brussels

Up close and personal with Brussels sprouts! Get em while they’re hot!

fish shallot

I think shallots are my favorite member of the onion family.

fish sauce

I love a good silicone whisk. I found mine here.

fish lower

A mountain of goodness.

GRILLED FISH WITH SHALLOT SAUCE

A Hungry Apple Original

Ingredients:

Brussels

20-25 small Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved

2 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and pepper

Fish

2 4-6 oz fish fillets, I used tilapia

2 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and pepper

Sauce

2 tablespoons butter

2 shallots, finely chopped

2 small garlic cloves, minced

1/2 cup sour cream

1-2 tablespoons chicken broth

salt and pepper

Instructions and directions:

Heat oven to 375 degrees

Heat grill to medium heat

In a bowl, toss Brussels sprouts with olive oil, salt and pepper to coat. Transfer sprouts to a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes or until golden.

Brush both sides of the fish with olive oil, sprinkle salt and pepper.

In a shallow pan, melt butter over medium heat, add shallots and garlic. Cook until shallots have softened, 3-4 minutes.

Grill fish on each side for 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and cover.

To the sauteed shallots add sour cream and whisk until smooth with a silicone whisk. Use chicken broth to thin. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Place fish on a plate (over brown or white rice, cooked in chicken or vegetable broth) top with sprouts and sauce.

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE VEGETABLE?

Buffalo Chicken Dip

dip header

Last weekend the anticipation of spending the whole day watching football,  had me Jones-in for a game time appetizer. You see, I’m a fan of spicy food so I have tried a lot of Buffalo Chicken Dips in my day and this one reigns supreme.  A friend of mine (Hello Amber!) made it for a work function and I have been looking for a reason to make it ever since.

Enter, football season.

Forget the recipes that call for boiled or canned chicken, this recipe’s roasted chicken makes all the difference.

dip ingredients

Here are the other ingredients.

dip up close

And when a whole bottle of hot sauce isn’t enough? Add Jalapenos!

dip ut

Some UT fan I know slid this guy in for a photo op. Sneaky.

dip above

Serve with tortilla chips and cold celery.

This recipe makes a large portion. Or sometimes 4 people eat it all. I’m not saying I know those people but I bet it happens.

You guys just sit back and relax. No really! Make yourselves comfortable 🙂

BUFFALO CHICKEN DIP

Ingredients: 

2 chicken breasts, roasted with olive oil, salt and pepper

½ Cup Olive Oil Mayonnaise

½ Cup Sour Cream

1 Pkg Cream cheese, room temperature

1 Cup fresh shredded Sharp Cheddar, divided

½ cup to ¾ cup of favorite brand wing sauce ( I used Franks Red Hot)

Pickled or roasted jalapenos (optional)

Instructions and Directions: 

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Shred chicken in large bowl.

Mix in mayo, sour cream, cream cheese and 1/3 of the shredded cheddar until smooth.

Mix in wing sauce to taste, add more or less depending on desired spiciness .

Spray a 8×8 or larger glass or ceramic dish with cooking spray and fill with the dip.

Bake at 350 degrees for approx 30 minutes.

Sprinkle the last of cheddar on top and line with jalapenos (if using) and cook until melted and bubbly.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE SNACK WHILE WATCHING THE GAME?

I also love the old trusty 7 layer dip.

Asian Salad

final header

I found this really light salad recently and decided to lighten it up even more. It is so light that you might like it for dinner when you have already had a heavy lunch. Or, when it is hot outside and you don’t feel like eating much.  Or for lunch?

Hmmmmm, I’m not selling this salad am I? 

IT’S SO REFRESHING TOO! Makes you feel full, but not weighed down. I’m not a very good sales person but don’t take it out on the salad. It is a must try.

strips

The original recipe I found called for frying won ton strips. Which I am sure would be insanely delicious but I try not to fry. I would rather waste excessive calories on things like cheese or beer.  But if frying is your thing then go right ahead!

almonds

Here are the almonds, getting all toasty.

dressing parts

Dressing-before.

dressing

Dressing-after.

Chicken

Finely shredded chicken.

fusilli

Up close Fusilli.

layers

Layer it all in a big bowl!

final lower

ASIAN SALAD

Adapted from Foodie Crush
serves 2

Ingredients:

1 wheat tortilla cut into 2 inch strips

olive oil spray

4 cups chopped romaine lettuce

1  roasted chicken breast, shredded

2 green onions, chopped

1/4 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted

2 cups cooked fusilli, cooled or chilled

dressing:
3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/2 cup seasoned rice vinegar

2 teaspoon sesame oil

2 teaspoons sugar

4 teaspoons low sodium soy sauce

4 tablespoons sesame seeds

1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Pinch of garlic powder

Instructions and Directions:

1. Heat oven to 350. Spray strips of tortilla and scatter about on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake 3-4 minutes each side or until golden.
2. In a large bowl, combine lettuce, chicken breast, green onion, almonds and pasta.
3. Combine dressing ingredients in a small bowl. Whisk well until sugar dissolves. Toss lettuce mixture with 1/2 of the  sesame dressing and top with sesame seeds and wonton strips and serve. Add more dressing if desired.

DO YOU LIKE A LIGHT DINNER OR A BIG DINNER?

The A.M. Spinach Smoothie

Looking for a great start to your morning ? MAKE THIS SMOOTHIE. I know, I know, I was skeptical at first too and now I can hardly get through the day without it.

They give me energy and keep me full until my least favorite meal of the day a.k.a. lunch. You can easily adjust the ingredients to suit your taste.  More or less spinach, small or large banana, less milk or more milk depending on the consistency you like etc. Some people I know add other fruits too like strawberries and blueberries.

So here is how I make mine. This amount fills up the blender. Makes 2 large smoothies. You could divide in half obviously, to make just one but everyone in my house gets in on this action.

s1

First thing’s first. Add the milk for calcium and a bunch of other good stuff.

s2

Two big handfuls of the green.

s3

Almond butter for protein. You could certainly use peanut but I can not. Unless you want to see me drool uncontrollably and lose the ability to breathe well.

s4

Flax seed powder goes next for some added fiber. I buy a giant bag at Costco that lasts a while.

s5

Oats for whole grains that make you full.

s6

A banana that has been sliced and frozen ahead of time. The riper the banana the sweeter the smoothie. I won’t even get started again on all the benefits of bananas. Trust me, they are magical.

s7

Ice, ice, baby.

s8

This is where it is up to you again. Just add milk to get to the desired consistency. I probably add 3/4 of a cup more but you can add as much as you’d like. Or, add none at all!

s9

This is what you get.

A big glass of frothy morning deliciousness to get your day off to a great start.

s10

The extra large smoothie straw is a big added bonus.

SPINACH SMOOTHIE 

A Hungry Apple Orignial (<—— Just means I made up the recipe 🙂 )

Ingredients: 

2 Cups Milk (I use 1%, you could use cow milk, almond milk, soy milk) + more to taste

2 big handfuls of fresh spinach

2 tablespoons almond butter

1/4 cup flax seed powder

1/4 cup oats, uncooked

1 large banana, sliced and frozen

1 ice cube

Instructions and Directions:

Add ingredients to the blending in this order. Blend on smoothie or liquefy setting adding milk if needed.

DO YOU HAVE A MORNING RITUAL? 

Mango Pineapple Tilapia and The Weekend

I hope you had a good weekend. Mine was occupied mostly by football and these things:

eggs

Delicious Sunday Morning Breakfast

black beans and rice

Mexican Fare

sam

Welcome back October Sam!

I tried a delicious mango and pineapple salsa from Whole foods a few weeks ago. It was addicting and was finished in one sitting. I thought it would be good on fish and so I decided to copy it.

Turns out, I was right.

Summer isn’t over yet!

salsa bowl

I had a hard time not eating all of this before I topped the fish with it.

salsa fish

MANGO PINEAPPLE TILAPIA

Ingredients Tilapia: 

1 pound tilapia (3-4 fillets)

1 tablespoon pure maple syrup

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon chili powder

1/8 teaspoon cumin

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Ingredients Salsa: 

1 1/2 cups pineapple cut in cubes

1/2 a mango cut into smaller cubes

1 small  jalapeno, seeds and veins removed and very finely diced

1/4 cup red onion, finely diced

2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

one lime, juiced

Instructions and directions: 

Turn grill or grill pan to medium heat.

Combine all the ingredients for the salsa in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate ahead of time.

In a bowl combine, paprika, garlic powder, chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper.

On a plate, rub each side of the  fish with olive oil and then with maple syrup. Dust each side of the fish with the seasoning blend.

Spray grill grates with cooking spray. (The maple syrup with want to stick) Cook each piece of fish on grill approximately 3-4 minutes on each side (depending on how well you like your fish cooked) .

Remove from grill and top with salsa.

Devour.

Carole’s Banana Bread

cooling

Need a treat for the weekend?

I don’t know exactly where this recipe originated but I do know it is the best banana bread I’ve ever tasted. I ate it all the time growing up at my best friend’s house. She and her mom would make multiple loaves at a time and we would immediately devour half a loaf. We would sneak back into the kitchen for another piece repeatedly, until it disappeared!

Before we knew what calories were.

dry ingredients

First you need the dry ingredients.

other ingredients

Then you add these guys.

naners

And of course the naners.

Did you know as your bananas  ripen,  if you don’t have time to make this, you can peel, slice and freeze? Just thaw later when you are ready to make your bread. No excuses!

prebake

After it is all mixed up. Pour the batter into a greased/sprayed bundt pan. You can also use two loaf pans.

in the oven

Then bake-for what seems like forever because it smells so good!

cake whole

People who don’t even like banana bread like this. Check out all the good things bananas can do for you!

bread slice

Banana cake may be a better name for it because it is sweet.  Straight to the hips sweet.

Good for breakfast, with coffee, for dessert or a snack.

Hello Carole! I know you don’t need the recipe, but here it is.

CAROLE’S BANANA BREAD

Ingredients: 

3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 1/2 cup sugar
3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
pinch of cinnamon
3 whole eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup buttermilk (or 1/3 cup milk with 1 tablespoon lemon juice)
3-4 mashed bananas, the riper the better
In a mixer or with beaters, combine the dry ingredients.
Add the rest of the ingredients down to the buttermilk. Blend well.
Add bananas.
Pour into a bundt pan liberally sprayed with vegetable oil.
Bake on 300 degrees for 1 hour and 10 minutes if using a bundt pan. 40 minutes if you are making loaves.
Let cool 30 minutes before removing from pan.
Serve warm and snack all day.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE SWEET BREAD?

Edley’s BBQ Nachos

After a recent 3 hour hike in Nashville, we left the park famished! We had planned earlier in the day to head to the farmer’s market for a late lunch. We were too late though and  everything at the market was closing up so we had to make a last minute decision about where to eat. Normally this results in driving around aimlessly for 30 minutes.  This can be a struggle. I’ve heard good things about Edley’s BBQ since it’s opening in 2011. I’m not the biggest BBQ fan so I hadn’t been dying to try it but since we were desperate, I gave in.

Best decision ever.

Most of the time we split things because, who could ever eat as much as they give you? Also, I’m not a huge fan of leftovers.  The minute we laid eyes on the menu,  we knew what we would be having.

BBQ NACHOS.

edleys

Now I know I said I didn’t really dig BBQ and normally it’s not my first choice but BBQ nachos are an exception. And these are the best I have ever had.

They have thick sliced potato chips instead of tortilla chips. Sounds strange but it was a smart move on their part. The BBQ Chicken (pork is also a choice) is chopped pretty finely, which I appreciate. The sauce is smokey and sweet with just a little spice and the pico di gallo and sour cream are the perfect topping and give them a very fresh taste. They have a full bar with draft beer (2 of which were Yazoo) and who can argue with beer in a mason jar. Not me.

This was the perfect late lunch/afternoon snack.  I suggest you make your way there as soon as you get the chance.I will definitely be back!

Let me know what else is good!

Creamy Taco Pasta and Tortilla Crisps

taco up close

If I could convince the rest of the household 😛 I would implement Taco Tuesday EVERY week in our house.  This girl loves tacos. The big man on campus will eat just about anything-but eat the same thing every week, he will not.

So I bring you, tacos in disguise. Trickery at its finest.

And it was a hit!

rotisserree chickens

In addition to rotisserie chicken…..

ingredients

you will need these ingredients.  Though the Mexican style beer in the background doesn’t go directly into the pasta, it is a very important ingredient to the meal if you ask me.

cut wedges

These baked tortilla crisps are a welcomed addition to provide a little crunch. Besides,  when you’re eating pasta, who doesn’t want something to scoop with  so you get every last bite!

dos perros

Save room for another one of these too!

Creamy Taco Pasta and Tortilla Crisps

Adapted from Bev Cooks

Serves 4

Ingredients:

2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 of a medium sized red onion, diced

3 Cloves of Garlic, minced

3 Tablespoons of taco seasoning

1/2 of a 14.5 oz can of black beans, drained and rinsed

1-4oz can of diced green chiles

1 ear of fresh corn off the cob or 1/2 can of summer corn, drained

1 can diced tomatoes or one fresh tomato

2 cups shell pasta, cooked to package instructions

4 oz cream cheese

3 Tablespoons Greek yogurt

1/2 bunch of cilantro, finely chopped

1 sliced avacado

sea salt and pepper

Lime wedges for serving

For Wedges: (this can be done ahead of pasta)*

2 large fajita sized wheat tortillas

olive oil or olive oil spray

sea salt

*Heat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Brush both sides of tortillas lightly with olive oil. On a cutting board, cut each tortilla with a pizza cutter into 8 wedges. Scatter wedges about on the baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt to taste. Bake 4 minutes on each side or until golden and crisp.

Instructions and Directions:

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Cook onion and  garlic  for about 4 minutes. Season with taco seasoning, salt and pepper.

Add the beans, corn and diced green chiles. Toss to combine and continue to cook another 5 minutes.

Add the diced tomato and toss to combine.

Meanwhile, cook pasta shells until al dente. Reserve about 1/4 cup pasta water and drain the rest. Add the shells, cream cheese and yogurt to the skillet. Toss to combine unitl cheese is melted and yogurt is combined.

Add some of the pasta water to thin out the sauce if it’s a little too thick. Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed.

Serve with fresh cilantro, sliced avocado,  a lime wedge and tortilla crisps!

taco bowl

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT TACOS?

Summer Jam 2012

adapted from the Delightful Repast

Header Jam

There is a peach tree in the back yard that decides once every few years he will grow some good peaches. This was one of those years! The peaches come along faster than I can keep up with them. This year, we got smart and made Peach Freezer Jam. Any fruit would work but we were up to our neck in peaches.

Unpeeled Peaches

The peaches were small but very sweet.

Peeled Peaches

We blanched the peaches and peeled them  so that we didn’t lose much meat from the fruit before we pitted them.

Jam and Jars

Now for the fun part, filling the jars. This recipe makes 8, 8 oz jars of jam.

FROZEN PEACH JAM

Ingredients:

8-8oz glass canning jars (I used Ball)

4 Cups prepared peaches  (or any fruit)

2 1/2 Cups Sugar

1 package of Less Sugar Sure Gel

The juice of 1 lemon

1 cup of water

Pinch of cinnamon (optional)

Instructions and Directions:

Rinse 8-8oz jars and lids with boiling water. Dry thoroughly  and set aside on a towel.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and prepare a large bowl of water with ice.

Mark a small x on the bottom of each peach and place a few peaches at a time into boiling water for one minute. Remove the peaches and place them into the ice bath for one minute.

Now the peaches should be easy to peel.

Repeat the process until all the peaches are peeled and the seed is removed.

Place 4 cups of peeled and pitted peaches into a food processor and pulse. This is where you decide how big you want the bits of fruit to be in your jam. I didn’t puree mine, but I didn’t  leave large hunks of peach either.

Pour the peaches into a saucepan over medium high heat just until they boil. Remove from heat and add lemon juice(and cinnamon if you are using it) .

In a separate saucepan, stir together sure gel, sugar and water. Whisk constantly over medium high heat until boiling. Whisk for one minute after it starts boiling and remove from heat. Immediately add the sugar mixture to the peaches.  Stir until well combined.

Using a ladle or a glass measuring cup (with a spout) fill each 8 oz jar. Leave a 1/2 an inch space at the top for them to expand in the freezer.

Immediately cover with lids and wipe the sides of the jars where you may have dripped 🙂

Let the jars sit out on the counter for 24 hours.

Now your jam is ready to eat! Store in the fridge for 3 weeks or the freezer for up to a year!

If you freeze the jam, thaw in the fridge before using.

Vintage Peach Jam

Vintage Jam 🙂

Strawberries

We had so much fun making the peach that we picked up some strawberries.

Strawberry Jam

If you use a fruit that doesn’t have to be peeled, just start with the step where you put the fruit into the food processor.

Strawberry and Peach

And then we made some more peach. Peach and strawberry jam…back together again!

Jam tower

That’s a lot of damn jam.

jam sink

Now go make some jam people!

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE FLAVOR JAM, JELLY OR PRESERVES??