Archive for January, 2009



I recently came across this site, Foodzie, and honestly can’t remember how I got there. But I’m glad I did. Based out of San Francisco, they’re “a marketplace to discover and buy food from small artisan producers and growers.” Sounds great, right? Nose around and look at all their amazing finds. I was especially intrigued by the Chocolate Walnut Fleur de Sel Caramels. Wish I had a birthday coming up!

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Time for a Challenge

Jen told me about a new Flickr group called the Cookbook project, where you make a recipe from one of your cookbooks and them post the results. Well, I know I have enough cookbooks, but I rarely use them. I find myself searching for recipes online and in the, um, many magazines I receive each month. I followed the links to her blog (pink bathtub) and I love the challenge she has given herself. She plans to make a recipe from each of her cookbooks. I think I can do that. She’s hoping to do one recipe a week. I think that’s a fair timeline. At least for the next couple months. So off I go to dig through my cookbooks to find something that sounds good.

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The In-laws called Saturday morning and were going to be shopping for a new couch in the same mall as The Good Earth. Did we want to meet them for Brunch? Um, Yeah. That’s a silly question. Of Course! They knew I had been there just last week for Mom’s Birthday, but no, I didn’t mind eating there twice in one week. Sounded pretty good, actually!

Trouble is, I totally forgot to take any photos! I guess I’ll just have to describe it all. We got there before the typical brunch rush, which was good, because there can be a wait. So we were seated right away but then had to wait a good ten minutes for our server, or anyone, in fact, to great us. Another server kept looking over and I could hear her checking in with our server, but she never came over. Eventually our server brought us water and we ordered. We each ordered freshly squeezed juices which of course, were phenomenal. The beet and carrot juice that M-I-L ordered didn’t go over well, but, well, it’s beet juice. It tastes like beets. I’ve had it before and if it’s what you’re looking for it’s mighty good. Saturday I ordered the orange-pineapple and it was perfect.

The Good Earth delivers a bread/cracker basket before lunch and dinner, but the treat before breakfast are small, handmade, warm caramel rolls. I think I ate mine in about three bites, without looking up. Again, amazing. I ordered the blueberry ten-grain pancakes which were delicious and I think to think healthy. I ordered the short stack, which barely fit on the plate, and a side of crisp bacon. Both were perfect.

For the others: Husband ordered the breakfast quesadilla while M-I-L and F-I-L each ordered the wild mushroom omelette. There was lots of chewing and little talking while we ate, so I believe we all thoroughly enjoyed our meals. I know I ate too much and I still walked away with a pancake in a to go box.

Other than slow service when we first sat down, the brunch was good. I love knowing I can go to the Good Earth and get a healthy meal that also tastes really good. And would I go again this week if someone asked me to? Of course. Any takers?

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Enticing Enchiladas


I was totally brain-dead towards the end of last week when it came to a dinner idea. I knew I had a pound of ground bison I had to use, but the chili recipe I had been planning to make just didn’t sound good. I looked around and found a recipe for these Enticing Enchiladas. They seemed simple enough and with some extra spice, I knew they would work for a quick dinner. And provide leftovers.


Simple was right. Maybe too simple. The tomato sauce had very little kick, and even after adding a jalapeno to the bison filling, it was still a little bland. We added some salsa, sour cream and fresh avocado to the final product and they were pretty good. But we’ve made better. And we’ll make better again.

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Not only was this past Tuesday a historical day, it was my Mom’s birthday as well. I took her to lunch at one of our favorite restaurants, the Good Earth. I’ve written about it before, and I’ll continue to write about it as long as they keep serving healthy, innovative food like they do.

Mom had her favorite, the Thai Chicken Wrap (but only after our server promised their peanut sauce was FDA approved.) I enjoyed the Shrimp Club, loaded with Avocado, tomato and other goodies, including what I believe was a slightly spicy sauce. I originally ordered a cup of the pea soup but canceled it when I saw the size of my sandwich. No need to overdo it, besides I had to save room for one of their amazing cookies. Tuesday I chose a frosted ginger, but they’re all really, just amazing and huge. Did I say huge?

It was a good day. And we have a new President.

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Image from STONz, check it out.

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Quick Downtown Lunch

There’s a coffee shop near my office that has really, really good soup. The shop is called Java J’s and they are a little hip joint that has live music, sponsors a scooter club and lets their patrons bring their dogs inside (where, frankly, I think they belong). They don’t make it from scratch, although they did admit to “Doctoring” it up. Well, they’re doing a great job. I’ve had a few unique flavors there this winter, such as Roasted Red Pepper and Gouda, and today a lovely, thick Mexican Tortilla. They also have sandwiches, which they’ll grill. And now they’re offering waffles. Huh, now that’s intriguing! Nothing like a toasty warm waffle in the morning, instead of the cold, dry, scones I’m so used to.

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Here in the “Twin Cities” there are two primary newspapers. We receive the printed version of the “Minneapolis” paper, but I’ve started to check out the “St. Paul” paper online. And it’s a nice change of pace. Last week I found a link to sign up for weekly crock-pot recipes. Not sure how it will turn out, but hopefully I’ll get a few ideas for some easy meals. This time of year, when everything is frozen and covered in snow, it’s hard to think of fresh ideas. I’ll try to post about the recipes as I get them and/or make them!

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I’ve been saving this one until it warmed up, and tomorrow (Friday) it’s finally supposed to. Okay, so for most of you a high of 6 degrees isn’t exactly warm, but when the high has been hovering around 10 below for the last three days, we’ll take what we can get. And at this point, I wouldn’t turn this dessert down. Even in negative temps.

We made these for New Years Eve, after a dinner of steak, crab legs and sesame sugar snap peas. We piled Haagan Dazs Coffee Ice Cream and Hot Fudge and sliced bananas together. Yum. Really, it doesn’t get much better that this. Except if you buy a tub of ice cream and continue to dip into it for the next week. Yum. The hot fudge helped melt the ice cream just enough and the banana added a few much needed nutrients.

That’s kind of pushing it, isn’t it…

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Ever since I had the gorgonzola gnocchi at Crave over the holidays, I’ve been craving the little dumplings. I ran across a recipe for Gnocchi with Pesto and remembered that I made pesto this fall and it’s just waiting in the freezer downstairs. I picked up a package of vacuum-packed gnocchi and pulled a bag out of the freezer. Dinner was ready almost instantaneously. The gnocchi cook in 2-3 minutes the pesto thawed while the water was coming to a boil. I added some fresh green beans and some ricotta, but really, the creamy sauce and tasty gnocchi really didn’t need it.

Next trip to the store I picked up another package. Always nice to have an option in the cupboard/freezer.


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