January 31, 2011

Doppio Coffee + Lounge - Hood River, OR

Nice selection of sandwiches, including some interesting vegetarian options. I had a turkey sandwich on toasted wheat bread with provolone, sprouts and spinach. It was good, but nothing amazing. I do like that the sandwiches come with your choice of potato chips of apple slices.  I would go back again, but would try something different...maybe one a hot panini.

Doppio Coffee on Urbanspoon

January 30, 2011

Pancetta and Cinnamon Waffles

Delicious combo of salty, sweet, and savory!  I used regular bacon since that's what I had on hand. Great for a different spin on the traditional breakfast waffles. Enjoy!


Pizza Mondo - Bend, OR

Very good pizza! We ordered their new "Hawaiian" called the Big Island. It had an olive oil base with pulled pork, bacon, pineapple, and sweet peppers with BBQ sauce drizzled on top. This is probably the best Hawaiian-style pizzas I have had. Definitely recommend it and look forward to trying some of their other new flavor combos.  

Pizza Mondo on Urbanspoon

Pine Tavern - Bend, OR

Nice place, but their food is nothing special and is overpriced. If you are with a large party (>10) don't expect to sit together.  I recommend trying Pine Tavern for lunch during the summer when you can take advantage of their seating on the Deschutes River and a more reasonably priced menu.
Pine Tavern Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Angeline's Bakery and Cafe - Sisters, OR

Always a nice place to stop in Sisters; super friendly staff. They have a good selection of bagels and other bakery goods, including many gluten-free items. Their sandwiches are very reasonably priced and the food is always delicious. My favorite items are the Hummus and Veggie Wrap, Jicama Salad, Quinoa Salad, and the Molasses-Ginger Cookies (vegan).

Angeline's Bakery & Cafe on Urbanspoon

Christo's Pizzeria - Salem, OR

One of the best pizza places in Oregon. Delicious crust that is both chewy and crispy. Just the right amount of toppings...never overwhelming. Great selection of both rosa and bianca style pizzas. When I am visiting Salem I always try to make a trip here. Service can be slow so as long as you are not in a rush it's the place to go for excellent pizza. Great lunch specials, too.

Christo's Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

January 17, 2011

Chicken Spezzatino

Easy, healthy, and tasty soup, great for a cold rainy day. I garnished my bowl with Parmesan to add some extra flavor as it was fairly mild. I also used boneless, skinless chicken breasts and cut them into bite size pieces before adding them to the pot. This made the recipe even easier and since I had the breasts on hand it saved a trip to the grocery store. Enjoy! 


Chocolate Honey Almond Tart

Super rich and chocolaty, easy and quick to make. The almonds add a really nice texture and taste to the crust. I recommend using toasted almonds for the most flavor.  This dessert didn't set up and hard as I was expecting, but the taste was still amazing. Enjoy!


January 15, 2011

Update - Tony's Deli - Bend, OR

Tony's has closed their doors. Unfortunately another good restaurant that has fallen victim to the current economic times.

Bourbon Street - Bend, OR

Located in downtown Bend, Bourbon Street is a fried food haven, at least for happy hour. We ordered the hush puppies, Crawfish Po'boy and a hamburger. The hush puppies we really good; not super crunchy with a nice cornmeal taste. They were served with a honey butter that added very little (except more fat). The Po'boy was served on a split baguette - the bread was chewy and not fresh, there was a minimal amount of crawfish pieces on the sandwich that were overwhelmed by the breading, the mayonnaise and what was supposed to be a tangy slaw (no way!).

The hamburger, while nothing special, was good and a steal at under $5. The hamburger and Po'boy were both served with sweet potato fries with a "Cajun" seasoning, which I think was just Old Bay. It made the fries too salty and over powered the sweet potato flavor. If you are just going in for a drink and some fried appetizers the place does have a nice atmosphere, though I am definitely disappointed that I can't say many good things about this place, especially being a southern girl myself :-(   

Bourbon Street Bend on Urbanspoon

January 13, 2011

Chile-Ginger Marinated Flank Steak

This marinade can be used on flank steak, skirt steak, or tuna steaks as indicated. For the beef options, I recommend marinating 8 hours or more to really infuse the flavor into the meat.

The sweetness of the brown sugar is nicely balanced by the spiciness of the chile-garlic sauce. Enjoy!


January 11, 2011

Chorizo Hash

My husband created this dish one morning when we were looking for something hearty and trying to use up some potatoes. Enjoy!

3/4 lbs Chorizo
2 small sweet potato and 5 small Yukon golds, diced
Avocado and fresh cilantro to taste, if desired

Remove chorizo from the casing and cook in a large non-stick pan, crumbling it. When cooked through remove it from the pan and drain on a paper towel, then add the potatoes to the pan. Cook until desired texture is reached (10-20 min). Add the chorizo back to the pan to re-heat it. Serve with avocado and fresh cilantro. 

January 9, 2011

Recent Trip to Sarasota, Florida

During a recent trip to my home town of Sarasota, Florida, we only went out a few times, spending most of our time eating at home with my family. Here are my reviews of the few places we did visit while we were there.

Red Elephant Pizza & Grill - Nothing special. We had the Red Elephant Special and BBQ Chicken Pizzas. The crust was lacking in flavor and was not yeasty like traditional pizza crust. The BBQ sauce was more tangy than sweet. The Red Elephant was pretty good, with plenty of toppings and just the right amount of sauce, but the boring crust just made the entire pizza a bit boring.
Red Elephant Pizza & Grill on Urbanspoon

Sweetberries Frozen Custard and Eatery - Excellent custard!  I actually have never eaten their regular food, but always just go for the custard. Flavors change daily so check their online calendar for the flavor of the day. They also make "Concretes" (think DQ Blizzard) with their regular custard (choc or vanilla) which are quite a treat. They offer daily concrete flavor mixes which are alway fun and interesting.
Sweetberries Frozen Custard and Eatery on Urbanspoon

Gianni's Pizza (Venice, FL) - Their Italian Sandwich was quite good with nice variety of meat and served on a toasted hoagie with a light Italian Dressing. My husband and I shared a calzone, which good, but nothing special. The pizza by the slice was sitting under a heat lamp so I passed on that. Just a short jaunt from the Legacy Trail.
Giannis Pizza on Urbanspoon

First Watch (Lakewood Ranch) - Always a good bet for breakfast. Good variety with healthy option and local themed favorites. I recommend the Floridian French Toast, Banana Granola Pancakes, the Key West Crepe, and any of their Skillets.
 First Watch on Urbanspoon

Panera Bread (Tamiami Trail) - Great salads, sandwiches, and soups. They have their standards (Fuji Chicken Apple Salad, Asiago Roast Beef Sandwich, Creamy Tomato Soup) then they have their seasonal offerings (Orchard Harvest Chicken Salad). They also have yummy breakfast sandwiches and, of course, bakery sweets. Their bakery sweets are my least favorite item from Panera - it tends to be hit or miss - but you can't go wrong with anything on their regular menu.
 Panera Bread on Urbanspoon

Carrabbas's Italian Grill (Tamiami Trail) - I have been to Carrabba's many times before and have always had good food. This time was no exception. However, I was a bit disappointed that they changed their bread recipe, which is not as good as it used to be. The food is very heavy (don't go there is you are counting calories) and ladened with butter and oil. For an occasional treat I would go back, but there are so many other good restaurants in Sarasota they would be towards the bottom of the list.
 Carrabba's on Urbanspoon

White Bean and Chicken Chili

Great healthy version of a white chicken chili (no cream). I added extra chili powder and cumin to bump up the flavor a bit, used only 1.5 lbs of ground chicken and 1 extra cup of broth. Recipe works well with ground turkey also. Enjoy!


January 2, 2011

Taylor's Sausage - Bend, OR

Great selection of homemade sausage and meats, including chicken, bison and elk.  I had the Hungarian sausage with sauerkraut; it had a nice mild flavor.  Most of the eats are inexpensive, yet tasty. I am definitely interested in going back and trying some of their breakfast items that are made with their homemade sausages.

Also, try some of their fresh/frozen meats to go (we left with 4 lbs!).
Taylor's Sausage Deli and Pub on Urbanspoon