WIAW Back to the Party

Hey ya’ll! Sorry I was gone for so long, but I decided to take a mini vacation from my responsibilities (lets be serious, blogging is my only one right now haha). I’m back again because I have so many wonderful posts of restaurant reviews, recipes, and other great surprises for ya’ll! Guess who’s blog is almost one year old? MINE! That is exciting. In the mean time I’m going to celebrate my favorite weekly party WIAW, which is hosted by Jenn. Seriously love it. It always puts me in a better mood to stare at beautiful pictures of food. Not that I’m in a bad mood because I killed my biochemical nutrition paper and the final. 4.0 for my final semester and Dean’s list yet again. Go Lindsay! Lets get it started in hurrrr (oh god I am not that lame)

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Introducing one of my favorite combinations, cake batter oatmeal. You seriously can’t go wrong with anything that is cake batter flavored or themed. Plus the pile of sprinkles adds a happy cheer to this bowl of deliciousness. I had to top it with peanut butter for a creamy texture. It was definitely a good decision. Just looking at this bowl makes me happy. It is really hard for me to decide if I like oatmeal or pancakes more for breakfast, so I think I’m just going to say it is a tie. I have a ton of oatmeal recipes in my brain right now, so get ready in the next month for some epic, scrumptious recipes that will make you drool and run out to go buy oatmeal immediately. Score.

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What is this? An apple? No. Um what? Yes, this is a pear. It is called a papple. Did I buy it partially because of the name? Yes, but also because I love pears and the fact that it looks like a freaking apple. My mom and I were at Central Market to get apples and some fresh fish when we ran across this interesting specimen. We decided to get one for each of us to try. The texture was very odd, but delicious. It was crisp like a pear, but had a crunch like an apple. The flavor was not overly sweet with a small amount of tartness to it.

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I go weak for a good salad. This is my healthy version of a Chinese chicken salad. I left out the unhealthy fried crispy strings. It has avocado, mandarin oranges, sliced red onion, carrot sticks, grilled chicken, lettuce, and a nice sesame thai sauce that is slightly drizzled over the salad. Winner winner healthy chicken dinner. I love making popular salads a lot less calorie packed. I’m going to do an eat this, not that post in regards to my recipe redux of fatty salads that people consider healthy at many popular restaurant chains.

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This sort of looks like a pile of mush, but a really delicious pile of junk. Don’t worry I didn’t eat this all in the same day. The base of this entire box of goodies is lettuce. It is topped with onions, mushrooms, carrots, edamame, curry chickpea salad, tofu in pesto, broiled cauliflower, sauteed mushrooms, a little piece of salmon, some grilled zucchini, and some black olives. This was one of the most filling meals I’ve ever had. My favorite thing in this box of whole foods salad bar goods was the curry chickpea salad. It was not over powering with the curry and it had a sweet flavor with the mango and edamame in it. Yum. I love the salad bar.

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Every since my mom’s birthday, we have been on the look out for the black forest parfait at Whole Foods. However THEY HAVEN’T HAD IT. Seriously depressing. We decided to try this lemon berry parfait instead. However since we are total idiots, we didn’t realize that the lemony goodness was on the bottom of the cup, so we were eating it and being like WHERE is the lemon dang it. Once we discovered the lemon it was like ooooo that is good, but still not as great as the black forest one. That is just my favorite. You can’t go wrong with chocolate and cherries. Noms.

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Barf in a bowl? It sort of looks like it, but instead it is my delicious creation with my left over spaghetti squash. It is the healthy version of mac n cheese. It is crazy good. I know it looks disgusting to look at, but trust me when you have a bite it it just cheesy goodness that melts in your mouth. I will definitely have to take more pictures and make this recipe again, so I can actually share it with you. It came to me on a whim when I got home from volleyball practice. I was in the mood for cheese (my favorite food group – you are obviously sick if you don’t like cheese), so I was like hmm mac n cheese, but let me make this healthy.

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Healthy snacks by Lindsay. I am getting good at this. I am definitely going to add this to my snack post that is coming real soon. This was homemade cinnamon chips topped with chopped strawberries and a little sugar free chocolate syrup. Dessert nachos. This is the way to go. It was cinnamon sugar that is dusted on the tortilla. It makes for a subtle sweet flavor. I definitely can’t wait to make more of these with different toppings.

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Heaven in little squares? You bet. I have one fatty awesome treat coming for you all in the next few weeks. These are petit fours filled with Bavarian cream and lemon filling. I know you are all now drooling. I have more pictures, but I’m definitely going to have to hold back on ya’ll for the meantime because you will be crying and yelling at me to give the recipe to you immediately. These things are fantastic. My mom and I made them for my volleyball team, and we are getting ready to make some more for a wedding shower. I think I should just quit at life and open a bakery. Food truck maybe? If life doesn’t work out then maybe that will be the plan.

I hope you all have a fantastic Wednesday. I’m currently working on some diet plans for a client I have. If this is a success, I’m totally going to use this person as my business card for my future nutrition practice once I get my license. Also I have tons of artwork I’m doing plus I’m working on tons of scientific papers for my professor. I’m out on the job hunt too, but it isn’t looking good since I’m going to Europe for two weeks. Oh well, those people are losing out because I’m awesome.

Would anyone be interested in doing guest post for me in June?

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Welcome to Seattle

Hey ya’ll! One of my favorite things to do is travel, so for winterbreak I ended up going to Seattle and Vancouver. I fell in love with both. Seriously, I want to move to Canada to go to graduate school. For the next few days, I will recap my amazing trip and the foodie adventures I had in these wonderful places.

When my brother and I landed in Seattle, it was around 9 pm. We were starving. We still had to get our suitcases, ride the link light train, and check in to our hotel. I did not realize I was going to San Francisco! Kidding, but just a little. There were hills like the ones in SF, and I had to drag my suitcase and myself up the hill, not pleasant. We made it, checked in, and my brother got on yelp. We decided to walk down a bajillion hills in order to get some sushi. We ended up going to Nijo Sushi.

DSCN0005Here is my brother. He is obviously starving to death/dying because we want our food. He is probably going to kill me if he sees this online.

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One of the greatest things abut this place was that they had happy hour until 12 am, which we were just in luck since we didn’t get there until about 10:30 pm. This was one of the dishes we got off the happy hour menu. They were yam fries, which were tossed with wasabi oil and kosher salt (yay kosher) and were served with a wasabi aioli. Oh god was that aoili sauce amazing. The creaminess of the sauce mixed with the crispy sweetness of the yam fries was pure perfection. I could just have eaten tons of this dish.

DSCN0023The second happy hour item we ordered was the dancing shrimp. It was flash fried rock shrimp tossed lightly with wasabi dressing. Once again Nijo hits us with an amazing creamy and crunchy blend of flavors. This probably was my favorite dish of the night. I am a sucker for good fried shrimp. I blame it on the cajun in me!

DSCN0017I’m about to serve you up some sweet sushi porn. My brother and I got three rolls because my dad has just messaged us saying that he was walking down to the restaurant. We ordered the frank and beans, which had tempura shrimp with cucumber topped with spicy tuna and tobiko. THAT ROLL WAS AMAZING. I’m not even sure how to describe it, but it was so fresh and creamy. I love rolls that have any type of creaminess. Another roll was the Crunch roll, which had spicy scallops, enoki mushrooms, cucumber, tobiko, and kalware. This roll was interesting. Not sure if I liked it, but it wasn’t bad. The third roll was the Cheeze roll. It was spicy tuna, cream cheese, cucumber, and avocado topped with panko breaded and fried eel. This roll was delicious too. Now it is time for some sushi porn!

DSCN0018DSCN0020Enough of this. Had to cut it off or I may not have been able to handle it. Just kidding. More sushi, but different rolls this time.

DSCN0027This beauty was the Chili Cha Cha roll. It was filled with soft shell crab, cucumber, and jalapeno topped with avocado and tobiko. It was pretty delicious. It had a nice kick to it too with the jalapenos, but it wasn’t so spicy that I couldn’t handle it.

DSCN0026This is the volcano roll. If you don’t like to have your mouth burning and on fire, run the other way. This thing made me chug about 5 glasses of water in about 5 minutes. It was crazy. It had cucumber, jalapeno, lemon slice, spicy scallop, eel sauce, and tenkasu and red tobiko. It was good, but scary spicy. Definitely couldn’t really handle it. I’m a whimp.

This place was pretty good, especially since they had a happy hour till 12 am. It was the perfect start to our amazing trip on the west coast.

Leaf (A Restaurant Review)

This week I had the pleasure of going to lunch with my grandparents and dad at one of my favorite places in Austin: Leaf. Leaf only serves salad and soup, which I think is great because when you want to be healthy it is a good choice for a lunch break. It is a build your own salad place and they have a menu called the Big 12 with their salad creations on it. I always choose the build your own salad.

The place is pretty small, but the atmosphere is awesome. You get to choose what type of lettuce base you want, you get 6 toppings (you can get more for extra), a dressing (theirs are amazing and really creative), and a type of protein. The staff are very eclectic too, which makes the whole experience better.

For my salad, I choose baby spinach leaves as my base for the salad. Then I had a strawberries, mandarin oranges, edamame, walnuts, red onions, cranberries, and avocado slices in my salad. For the dressing I chose to go with a strawberry balsamic vinaigrette, and for my protein I went with tofu. Usually I’m sketched out by tofu at times when I’m not the one cooking it, but this tofu was actually pretty amazing.

This salad was HUGE. I hate when people complain about others that love salads because they can actually be really filling and delicious when you fill it with tons of goods. I wasn’t overfull after the meal, but I was satisfied which is the perfect thing to be after you eat a meal out. I hate that feeling when you eat too much and you want to puke. I’ve had to learn how to limit myself over the years because it makes me sick when I eat too much. Although I still have this problem when I eat dim sum or Tomo Sushi (not that I’m complaining though because that is amaaaazing).

If you are ever in Austin you should definitely go to Leaf for a light lunch. Also it is on 2nd street, which is a great place to walk around and look at little boutiques. There is even an Urban Outfitters, which is less crowded since it is downtown.

Hope everyone has an amazing Friday!

Life Changing Sushi

Hey ya’ll! Right now I’m currently laying out on the beach in Galveston watching 62 children. Hopefully everything is calm, and I haven’t killed anyone yet. I’m the only woman chaperone, so I get to make sure all the girl athletes are okay. Anyways let me get to what this post is all about. The greatest sushi experience you will ever have: Tomodachi Sushi in Austin, TX.

It is where my dad, my younger brother, and I go when we want to eat some good sushi. The best time to go is at 5:30 because it is right when the restaurant opens, and there won’t be a wait. It is a really small building, so about 30 minutes after opening this place is crowded and you will have a 30 minute wait at least.

We started out the meal with a very awkward named dish…Screaming Orgasm. Yeah, it gets a little weird at Tomo, but the food is amazing. This dish is Tuna Tataki, which is tuna is thinly sliced and served over shredded daikon. The sauce contains fish eggs and is a creamy texture that has a little Asian spice in it. We gobble this up in five seconds every single time the waitress brings it because it is just THAT amazing.

For our second appetizer, we ordered a few pieces of tempura. What I like about Tomo is that you can create your own tempura appetizer. The options range from asparagus to sweet potato to tofu. We decided on shrimp and onions. The dipping sauce the chefs create combines perfectly with the crispy fried goodness of the tempura.

This is round 1 of the sushi rolls…yes, I said it: ROUND ONE. My family likes to eat, especially when we are eating sushi. The rolls in this order are ex-girlfriend, Mexican, say my name, japanese lasagna, and one roll that I can’t remember the name of (it was soo spicy, so I couldn’t handle it). One of my favorite rolls is Japanese Lasagna, which is baked crab, avocado, and cream cheese. This is like melty goodness in a roll. If you like anything creamy and cheesy then this is the roll for you.

There goes my brother grabbing a bite of ex-girlfriend roll as I’m taking a photo. I always have to be like NO, I need to take a photo (they probably think I’m crazy). The ex-girlfriend is crab, avocado, spicy tuna with halibut tempura and spicy mayo. This roll is to die for. We can’t go to Tomo without getting it every single time because that is how amazing it is. It has a little spiciness, but it doesn’t overpower the complete flavor of the roll. The other amazing roll on this plate is the Say My Name roll, which is jalapeno, cream cheese mixed with tuna, scallop, crab, and it is lightly fried. Um fried? Yes, it is amazing. I love it.

And here goes round 2 of the sushi rolls. We got the sweet potato roll, sassy suzy roll, and steve’s special. In my mind, none of these rolls were super special or stood out. The steve’s special was just okay, the sassy suzy was crazy spicy as my brother and dad said, and I enjoyed the sweet potato roll since it was a little different and vegetarian.

The sweet potato roll was asparagus in the roll topped with sweet potato tempura. I could have just eaten the tempura part because it was delicious. I guess it was sort of healthy or I’m just making an excuse for my crazy eating.

If you are ever in Austin, Tomo is the place that you need to go. It is a little obscure location in North Austin in a shopping strip next to a thai place and a laser eye building. If you live in Austin then you should definitely go here immediately.

Hop To It

Hey ya’ll! I just got back from Austin. I couldn’t post while there because I realized I forgot my camera plug at my apartment. Total fail. That tends to happen when I pack to go somewhere. I always forget something, and I get this feeling that I did, but I can never remember what I forgot until I’m already halfway away. Oh well. It was a pretty nice weekend. The highlight was definitely going to Hopdoddy’s, which is a nice burger bar in Austin.

There are two locations in Austin. The original one that is on South Congress, and this newer location on Anderson Lane. I go to the Anderson Lane one since it is down the street from where I live. Seriously best day ever when I got the news that they were getting a Hopdoddys in my neighborhood. My mom, brother, and I decided to go after my CT scans because I could only have clear liquids before, so I was starving.

I ordered the Janis Joplin. It is a hemp seed patty with avocado, bean sprouts, tillamook cheddar, and horseradish honey mustard. This is one of the best veggie burgers I have ever had. The bun is soft and has the perfect sweet, nutty flavor. The actual patty is extremely tasty, and filled with a variety of flavors. The toppings go perfect with this burger, and you definitely know you are eating the healthiest of everyone at the table.

My mom ordered the Primetime. It is Texas Akaushi Beef with caramelized onions, brie cheese, truffle aoili, and steak sauce. This is one of the fancier burgers they have on the menu. I think it is quite delicious (although I don’t eat red meat anymore), and the brie cheese is to die for. Whoever thought of putting that on the burger alongside the aoili, three points for you.

My mom and I split an order of fries. One of my favorite parts of Hopdoddys is that they have tons of sauces. Horseradish honey mustard, some chipotle BBQ sauce, and sassy sauce (their special).

My brother got the Greek, which is lamb, feta cheese, arugala, pickled red onions, tomato, cucumber, and tzatziki sauce. He said it was pretty amazing. He especially loved the feta cheese on top of it.

My brother also ordered a milkshake. The milkshakes here are life changing. This is the sea salt and caramel. It was amazing. The sweet and salty combination was perfect. I would definitely order this one next time I’m there. Although all of the milkshakes are good. I also got a t-shirt when I was there that says: “We spank our patties and they like it”. I really can’t wait to wear that around and get weird stares.

I hope everyone has been having a fantastic week!

Where is the best burger you have ever had?
What would be on your perfect burger?

The Art of Asian Brunch

Hey ya’ll! We are almost half way through the week, hurrah! I thought for today I would talk about another type of place that you can go out to eat at when you adopt Your Healing Diet. As we can tell from my sushi post, I love Asian food. Not only is it tasty, but is it also very healthy for you if you know how to manage your way through a menu. No wonder most Asians are very thin! One of my favorite Asian meals is Chinese Dim Sum. In my mind, I like to think of it as an Asian brunch. Brunch and Asian food: two of my favorite things. My favorite place to go in Austin is Chinatown, so one Saturday my brother, dad, and I decided to treat ourselves.

I love the decor and atmosphere of Chinatown because it is not kitschy. Instead it has a modern and sleek style with a few classic Chinese symbols around the restaurant. Anyways, dim sum does not start until 11 and I recommend making reservations because this place gets extremely crowded real quick. The way Dim Sum works is that the waiters come around with carts filled with delicious food, you pick what you want of the cart, and the waiter will mark it on your sheet. The prices are based on the size of the dish, so there is small, medium, large, extra large, and specialty.

We started out the meal with many dishes, but one of my favorite is the shrimp toasts. While this item does not exactly fit the Your Healing Diet, I believe that you cannot completely restrict yourself especially when you are first switching to a mainly plant based diet. I personally love seafood, so I will never be able to give that up. Anyways, the shrimp toast was perfect crisp and not soggy like it is at other dim sum locations.

The pot stickers at Chinatown are seriously amazing. They pan fry them right in front of you in a dumpling cart. It feels like you are eating legitimate food from the streets of Beijing, but you are really just sitting in a comfy chair in a restaurant. The outsides of the dumplings are perfect mix of crispiness from being pan-fried and the softness from the dumpling wrapper, and the vegetables inside are a nice blend that provides a good crunch when you bite into the dumplings. The dumpling cart is one of my brother’s favorite things at Dim Sum.

One of my dad’s favorite dishes is the salt and pepper shrimp. It is lightly battered and gives a nice spicy taste when you bite into it. The batter provides a crunch as you bite it, but then the warm juices of the shrimp burst into your mouth when you start chewing on it. I’m not going to lie, but this is definitely one of their best dishes. Not to mention that all of their shrimp dishes are extremely delicious. You can eat battered items like this in moderation. We split this between three people, so each person got about two shrimps. That will definitely not put any significant dent in your caloric budget or your healthy lifestyle.

We enjoyed tons of goodies at Dim Sum, and I left a happy camper. The best part was that I wasn’t extremely full because what we ate was very low calorie and pretty healthy for you. I recommend that everyone goes out to get some Dim Sum immediately, and if you are going to Healthy Living Summit and I happen to be there then let me take you to get some since I used to live in Boston for a while! I know my good eats there.

 

 

 

 

 

I hope you enjoyed my review of Chinatown in Austin. If you are ever in the neighborhood you should go. It is in north Austin, but totally worth the trip (although I live close by, so it isn’t a problem for me).

Before I go I have to share the most perfect dish ever: Avocado stuffed with crab and shrimp. Hello perfection, I do love you. It is creamy and warm. The flavors of the dish explode in your mouth and come together in a great combination.

Have you ever had Dim Sum before?
What is your favorite Dim Sum dish?

Sushi’s Healing Powers

Hey ya’ll! In Your Healing Diet Austin, by Deirdre Earls, there is an entire section on places to eat out at in Austin while following a Healing Diet. While most of the restaurants are in Austin, you can apply the genres of food to anywhere in the US or world. For instance, the book names a couple of sushi restaurants in Austin, like Uchi and Uchiko (definitely going to review this yummy place later on), but the book then states that all Japanese restaurants can meet the dietary rules of a Healing Diet.

Since it was a Saturday (my day to eat out), I decided to go find some sushi to enjoy on this new plan of mine. We just got a new sushi place, How Do You Roll, in San Marcos. I’ve been to the Austin location and I love it, so I was really excited when I found out the news. The basic concept of the restaurant is that you can create your own sushi rolls instead of having to pick from a long list of rolls containing a few items that you may not want to eat. Pretty much I’m in love with anything that can be made customizable!

This is the where you create your roll. First you start off with picking what type of wrapping you want, which is either soy or seaweed. I think that this is very considerate because some people do not eat sushi just because they don’t like the taste of seaweed. In my opinion I don’t think you even taste it, but whatever floats people’s boat. Next you get to choose what rice, which your options are brown or white. I love that they offer brown rice because it is a healthier choice and a whole grain that is needed in a balanced diet. After they place the rice on the roll, you then get to choose your veggies, fruit, and protein. The only thing I wish they offered was tofu for the vegetarians and vegans out there. You can still get an all veggie/fruit roll, but I think it would be nice to have some tofu in the roll. Finally they roll it up in front of you, slice it into 10 pieces (yes 10 whole pieces), and then you can add sauces and toppings onto the roll.

I ended up getting my rolls to go. My first roll was an all fruit roll, which I thought was extremely delicious. I used a seaweed wrap, brown rice, mango, strawberries, mandarin oranges, and it was topped with a strawberry sauce from mashed up strawberries. I personally love vegetarian rolls because they have a more fresh and natural taste to them than the ones with chopped up meat.

While the Healing Diet says to follow a mostly plant based diet, I decided to add some spicy tuna to my second roll. It is such a small amount though that it doesn’t even count as a normal portion of protein. The rest of my roll was a seaweed wrap, brown rice, avocado, strawberries, and mandarin orange. I know, more fruit, what can I say? I love the taste of fruit in a roll. I topped my roll with sesame seeds and enjoyed dipping it into a small amount of gluten free soy sauce (that was from my apartment).

It was an awesome dinner that was extremely affordable. I got 20 pieces of sushi for $11.45. Definitely winning right there. Another great thing about How Do You Roll is that the staff is extremely friendly and willing to help you with your dietary concerns. If you go to the Austin location, they offer punch cards and when you eventually get 9 rolls you get the 10th roll free. Best deal ever.

I hope everyone is having a fantastic Sunday and Fathers Day!

What would you put in your sushi roll?
Do you like the idea of customizable and healthy food?