What I Ate Wednesday #26 – Doing It Up Miami Style!

Have you entered my KIND Snacks giveaway? It ends tomorrow night.. don’t miss out!

Friday night, Nathan and I jet setted to Florida for a long weekend. I have family in the Ft. Lauderdale area so it’s always nice to be able to get away and go visit them, especially this time of year when it’s freezing at home! And since it’s not enough to just go to Florida, we planned a full day in Miami; completely revolving around food, of course!

We spent the day roaming South Beach with completely full stomachs. Seriously, this was not planned well. We had far too much food at every stop! But I guess if that’s my only complaint, it’s not so bad πŸ˜‰

[Brunch]
Yardbird

“A house of worship to farm-fresh ingredients, classic Southern cooking, culture and hospitality.”

This place is great! I loved the decor and all of the little touches, from the clever chalkboard drawings, right down to the paper napkin ring.

Yardbird Decor South Beach Miami Florida FL Jeff McInnis Top Chef

The staff was super friendly and really helped to make the experience so enjoyable and relaxing. I think my eyes lit up when we walked in and didn’t stop until we left. The kitchen was open to the restaurant and I loved being able to see everything being made and brought out. I definitely tried to scope everything out as it went by!

Yardbird Run Chicken Run South Beach Miami Florida FL Jeff McInnis Top Chef

Shares
Butter Lettuce and Grilled Mango salad with smoked pecans and benne seed vinaigrette.
Chilled Watermelon with cayenne pepper, lemon, and herbs.

His
Mama’s Chicken Biscuits with homemade pepper jelly and house-pickled cucumber, onion, and okra.
Coffee

Hers
Egg-white omelette with caramelized onions, muenster cheese, and smoked pork, topped with pimento cheese sauce. Buttermilk biscuit and fresh fruit on the side.
Coffee

Thoughts
The salad was tasty and I would recommend it if you’re looking for a light, refreshing salad. Next time, we would definitely look for something that packs a little more punch. Same idea goes for the watermelon; we like bold flavor!

Best biscuit ever? I think we both agreed on that one. It was light and flaky. Just the right consistency to peel layer by layer. The chicken was perfectly fried and the homemade pepper jelly was slightly sweet and spicy which was the perfect compliment. The omelette was chock full of mix-ins and flavor. I’d never had pimento cheese before but I think this may have converted me.

Overall, it was a great experience. I would definitely recommend a visit if you’re in South Beach and I’ll definitely be back again!

[Lunch/Snack]
Our eyes were bigger than our stomachs during brunch, but somehow we managed to put away all of that food. Which meant when lunch time rolled around, we weren’t hungry. Joe’s Stone Crabs were part of the original plan, but not being able to buy 1 or 2 for a little snack meant I skipped them all together.

Instead, we went over to the Hofbrauhaus.

Hofbrauhaus Hofbrau House Miami South Beach Florida FL

It had been a few hours and we’d done a few miles of walking so it was more-than-time for some beer. Or 1 liter each. And with all of that beer, clearly you need something to wash down!

Enter the meat and cheese platter with a side of soft-baked pretzel. Good thing we had the tiniest bit of room in our stomachs for this mound of deliciousness! We had no idea there would be so much food. But once again, we finished it. All of it.

And it’s worth noting, the people watching in Miami is second to none! You get a great view from the outdoor seating at this place.

[Pick-Me-Up]
Nathan has not stopped telling me about Aroma Coffee since he went to Israel 2 years ago. It’s the only coffee shop over there and they have the best coffee. So when he saw there was an Aroma Coffee in Miami, we had to stop in. And who doesn’t need a little iced cappuccino after a liter of beer?

Aroma Coffee Israel Miami South Beach Florida FL

[Dinner]
With no room left in our stomachs, we made our way over to Michael’s Genuine. It was featured on The Layover so we knew we had to check it out.

Michaels Genuine Food Drink Miami Beach Florida FL Anthony Bourdain

Unlike brunch, this time, we shared everything! We started with the Crispy Pig Ear. And if you can forget what you’re eating, it’s really delicious! They’re perfectly spiced and wonderfully crispy (just like the name!)

Next, we got the Crispy Sweet & Spicy Pork Belly with kimchi, crushed peanuts, and pea shoots. I love anything peanut so I was really digging the flavor and crunch on this.

Finally, for our meal we ordered the Grilled Leg of Lamb with salsa verde and the Wood-Roasted Brussel Sprouts with pancetta and lemon aioli. Unfortunately, I have to admit that this part of the meal fell flat. I was disappointed with the portion size of the lamb for the price, not to mention, it was cold when it came out. It wasn’t seasoned well and didn’t have tons of flavor. The brussel sprouts were good, but not anything really special.

In an attempt to make up for the lamb, we were comped a dessert of chocolate cake topped with ice cream and whipped cream. This happened to be the best part of the entire meal (and also the part that I didn’t photograph!)

With such a high price tag, I don’t think we would go back. The whole experience felt a bit over-hyped and even though we had a decent dinner, I’m sure we could have spent half as much and enjoyed ourselves much more elsewhere.

Overall, we had a great day in Miami. We were filled to the gills the entire time and couldn’t get enough of the sunshine and summery weather! Not exactly what you think of around the holidays, but a nice change of pace.

Food for Thought

Have you ever been to any of these restaurants? Have you ever gone to a restaurant that was recommended by someone famous and found that it didn’t live up to the hype?

What I Ate Wednesday #24 – Thanksgiving Feast

This year might have been my most successful Thanksgiving ever. For the first time, probably ever in my life, I didn’t overeat and it was amazing! It also left me wanting more. Usually I’m all Thanksgiving-food’ed out after we have our 2 dinners, but this year I feel like I could eat Thanksgiving dinner a few more times.

One of the biggest tips I’ve always heard on not overeating is to eat all of your meals as you would normally. So that’s what I attempted to do.

Thanksgiving Dinner Deep Fried Turkey Cranberry Relish Sausage Stuffing Sweet Potato Scramble Peanut Butter Butternut Squash Brussel Sprouts Asparagus Barr & Table Peas and Crayons What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

[Breakfast]
Tina from Carrots ‘N’ Cake said it perfectly..

“…a good breakfast sets the tone for my day.”

Since I’ve tried her Sweet Breakfast Scramble, I haven’t turned back. It’s amazing.. my favorites are with spaghetti squash and pumpkin, topped with 1 tbsp peanut butter. Usually two different kinds of peanut butter to mix it up πŸ™‚

[Lunch]
Peanut butter cup protein shake.

[Snacks]
Carrots and an apple.

[Dinner]
Thank goodness for Thanksgiving! I loved the menu this year; of course we had our staples, but some new side dishes popped up too.

  • Deep fried turkey
  • Sausage stuffing (secret recipe!)
  • Roasted sweet potatoes
  • Roasted broccoli
  • Roasted asparagus
  • Winter panzanella salad
  • Cranberry relish

Check out my plate above.. I definitely had a little extra of a few things, but I couldn’t believe I walked away with white space on my plate!

This year I jumped at the opportunity to make a few items for the night, partially in an attempt to have a few healthier items on the table.

Smitten Kitchen Michael Chiarello Panzanella Salad Homemade Reeses Peanut Butter Cups Jif KIND Snacks Granola Apple Crisp

I brought one of my favorite winter salads; winter panzanella from smitten kitchen. I also wanted to bring a healthy dessert so I made my Kind Apple Crisp. And then the healthy options ended. My homemade peanut butter cups are an absolute must ever year. I’ve been making them since I was a kid and have perfected them in the last few years. Nathan said they were the best this year, but I think he tells me that every year! I’ll keep him around.. πŸ˜‰

Thanksgiving Dinner Deep Fried Turkey Slicing

Mom slicing the turkey!

My brother deep fries the turkeys outside and as soon as they come in, everyone starts swarming the kitchen.

“Oh, this piece is going to fall off. I should grab it before it falls..”

And as soon as my mom starts slicing, you’d think we were a bunch of vultures that hadn’t eaten in days! Who knows, maybe some of us haven’t eaten in days in preparation? It’s well worth the wait!

[Dessert]

Thanksgiving Dessert Pumpkin Roll Pie Whipped Cream Banana Chocolate Chip Bread

Along with my peanut butter cups and apple crisp, there was also a deconstructed pumpkin pie in the cutest little cups, chocolate chip banana bread courtesy of my brother’s girlfriend, and a pumpkin roll. My aunt makes this roll special for Nathan every year, so you can imagine our panic when we saw her facebook status in the early afternoon..

“First attempt at pumpkin roll a failure and dumped in trash. Helper off to the Giant for more sugar. I know Nathan is counting on me!”

I’m pleased to report that her second attempt was a success! Luckily, I convinced Nathan ahead of time to split the desserts with me so I was able to try a little bit of everything. And boy can my family bake! Seriously. We’re good!

What a great holiday! I’m so thankful for my wonderful family, especially since they’re such great cooks and bakers πŸ˜‰

Food for Thought

What are you thankful for this year?

What I Ate Wednesday #21 – The Last Anniversary

*Have you entered my Tropical Traditions coconut oil giveaway yet? It ends tomorrow and a winner is announced on Friday!*

Well, it’s not really the last anniversary, but last Thursday was our last dating anniversary until we get married! We celebrated 9 long wonderful years of dating, and while people really don’t celebrate their dating anniversary after they get married, I think we’re going to have to do something for the big 1-0!

I had some fun with my food so I couldn’t wait to share it with you today! Happy WIAW!
Spooky Snacks and Healthy Halloween Treats

Barr & Table WIAW Dark Chocolate Cherry Protein Pancake Waterfront Kitchen Baltimore Maryland MD Unibroue Brussel Sprouts Bacon Pork Ribeye Monkfish Osso Bucco Pumpkin Cake Taharka Bros Butter Pecan Ice Cream

[Breakfast]
In the midst of my dark chocolate cherry protein pancake obsession, but to make it anniversary special, the future hubs and I made sure to cheers each other over a mimosa.

[Snack]
Blueberry greek yogurt. Yet another obsession of mine that I just can’t shake. It’s the perfect bit of sweetness and protein to get me through the morning.

[Lunch]
Salad with roasted pork tenderloin, tons of veggies, roasted red pepper sauce, and a little feta. Hey, I had to get a little fancy..

[Snack]
I’d been jonesing for a banana but seeing as how I was at work, the best I could do was a banana SOYJOY. I popped that baby in the microwave for 10 seconds and was in heaven! To my surprise, it really did satisfy my banana craving!

[Dinner]
A night out at Waterfront Kitchen was in order. We’d never been there but had heard so many good things about this new-ish farm-to-table restaurant in our hood. First question: wine or beer? We opted for beer and went straight to Unibroue! La Fin du Monde is one of our all time faves.

Looking at the menu, we immediately noticed that the dishes were not very complex. We’ve been to restaurants 100 times that have wowed us in their menu descriptions, so the simple preparation of these dishes was a nice change of pace.

As a light appetizer, we shared a warm brussel sprout salad with bacon, onion, and microgreens. It was so tasty and rich! I’m glad we split it.. I don’t know if I could have finished it on my own! What we could finish, however, was our first beer. Onto another Unibroue; next we tried Don de Dieu. This was a new one for us and we loved it, but not as much as La Fin Du Monde.

Nathan order the pork ribeye with wild mushrooms, heirloom peppers, farm fresh kale, and blackberry demi glace. I opted for the monkfish “osso bucco” with stewed cherry tomatoes, onion, sweet potato, and wilted Swiss chard. As I mentioned, the dishes seemed to have a simpler preparation which left it to execution. Spot. On. The dishes were flavorful and perfectly cooked. We couldn’t have asked for more enjoyable bites!

We finished our dinner with some coffee and the dessert special of the night: pumpkin cake with local butter pecan ice cream. Not too heavy and not too sweet; the perfect ending to a wonderful meal. (And a delicious halloween treat!)

Do you see Nathan ready to dive into dessert? πŸ˜‰ Seems to always happen with dessert!

Pumpkin Cake Taharka Bros Butter Pecan Ice Cream Waterfront Kitchen Baltimore Maryland MD

Food for Thought

Do you prefer to go out to dinner for special occasions or have a romantic meal at home?

We always go out for our anniversary but stay in for Valentine’s Day so we don’t have to deal with all of the craziness!

What I Ate Wednesday #17 – Holiday Recovery

I love getting together with my entire family for meals. It’s great to see everyone, catch up, and eat good food. Ooooh, the food!

Jewish holiday meals always include brisket, some sort of poultry, whether it’s chicken or turkey, often there is fish, usually salmon, matzah ball soup, vegetables, kugel, an assortment of desserts, and the list could go on and on. To say I overeat at these dinners would be an understatement.

I always tell myself, “1 piece of this, 1 piece of that, a couple little bites of this, a couple little pieces of that… you can always go back for more.” And I do. I take a little bit of everything and always go back for more. What can I say? My family knows how to cook and I’m going to take advantage of it when I can!

So after two Rosh Hashana dinners, I find myself trying to recover and pick up the pieces of my “has-been” healthy eating habits.

Barr & Table What I Ate Wednesday WIAW Peas and & Crayons Tone It Up TIU Pumpkin Protein Pancake Peanut Fluff Bombshell Spell Premier Protein Salmon Salad Chipotle Honey Lime Chicken Coconut Oil Roasted Brussel Sprouts Broccoli Chobani Apple Cinnamon

[Breakfast]
Tone It Up pumpkin protein pancake topped with peanut fluff and, with all of the benefits of ACV (courtesy of Brittany at Eating Bird Food), I knew I had to have my bombshell spell. Steering clear from the grains for a day or two will definitely help, so I put the oatmeal on the back burner. Get it?! πŸ˜‰

[Snack] Not Pictured
I found out that I’m not a huge fan of vanilla Greek yogurt without any fruit or granola in it. And unfortunately I had no fruit or granola in sight, so I went for the next best thing. I mixed in a tablespoon of no sugar added Swiss Miss. What, you don’t have a container of Swiss Miss at your desk?!

[Lunch]
The only good picture of the day. Salad topped with veggies and roasted salmon. The salmon was leftover from Rosh Hashana dinner and man, my mom did an awesome job! It’s a little smokey and a little sweet. And luckily I have some more leftovers to hold me over through the week!

[Snack]
It was a sad, sad day as I finished my very last Premier Protein shake. The vanilla is awesome and I will definitely be making my way over to Sam’s Club as soon as I can to get more!

[Dinner]
Chipotle honey lime chicken with coconut oil roasted brussel sprouts and broccoli. This chicken was so good! Nathan tasted the sauce and I got an “oh yea!” in approval and that’s when I knew I’d have to share the recipe with all of you! You know what that means.. check it out this Foodie Friday! πŸ™‚

[Snack]
I just feel the need to apologize for this picture. It’s not a pretty one, but it was so tasty and hit the spot after a hard interval workout, courtesy of Julie at PBFingers! I mixed 1/4 cup Chobani vanilla Greek yogurt with 1 tbsp peanut flour, 1 packet stevia, and 1/2 tbsp vegan carob chips. Then I mixed in a chopped up apple and sprinkled a little cinnamon on top. Yum!

[Goals]
In the spirit of continuing with my previous goal of beating my 5K time of 26:08, I ran my second 5K on Sunday. Unfortunately, this one didn’t have a chip time, only a gun time. But according to MapMyRun on my phone, I had the exact same time and pace as my first 5K. And I have to say, that while I’m a little disappointed that I didn’t beat my time, I’m still pretty pleased that I did just as well. Next up, 5K on September 29th. It’s on!

Speak Up!

What is your favorite holiday meal and what are your favorite foods that go along with that meal?