Sweet Potato, Kale, Caramelized Onion Cauliflower Pizza

Hey ya’ll! I just had a mini panic attack. I thought I wasn’t going to be able to blog today because my computer wouldn’t connect to the internet. After multiple scream sessions (at least without me throwing anything), I managed to get my computer back onto the internet. Today I have a special recipe for you. A sweet potato, kale, caramelized onion cauliflower pizza. Wow. That is a mouthful. It is definitely a mouthful of greatness.

Sweet Potato, Kale, Caramelized Onion Cauliflower Pizza

IMG_3173

1 c of Kale (you can add more if you want, which I ended up doing)
1 onion
1-2 large sweet potatoes (this depends on how much sweet potato sauce that you want)
1 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp skim milk
1 bag of frozen cauliflower
2-3 tbsp of basil paste
1-2 tbsp of garlic
2 eggs
1 cup of fat free mozzarella cheese
Extras: I added some honey sesame chicken that I made a few days before on top, cheese for the top

IMG_3170

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Stab sweet potato with a fork all over and place into the oven. Cook for about 45 minutes or until soft.

2. Chop onions into slices. Place oil into a skill and toss in onions. Keep on medium to high heat. Stir every few minutes for around 30 minutes. Keep going until brown and caramelized.

3. Once they have caramelized, add in the kale. Cook until it has softened.

IMG_3171

4. Boil all of cauliflower in a pot for around 5 minutes or until soft. Then place into a food processor. Grind until into fine bits that are easily mashed.

5. Place into a mixing bowl. Add in the basil and garlic. Mix well.

6. Then add in cheese and eggs. Spray a cooking sheet or cover it with parchment paper (then spray it with cooking spray). Place mixture on the paper and smash it down until it forms a large pizza.

7. Once the sweet potatoes are done, remove, and turn the oven up to 450. Place in the oven and bake for 25-3o minutes, waiting until the crust is pretty brown.

IMG_3172

8. While the crust is cooking, take your sweet potatoes and get out all of the insides and place into a small mixing bowl. Add in the milk an stir well until it makes a creamy paste.

9. Once the pizza is removed from the oven, spread the paste on the pizza as if it was sauce.

10. Then add on all of the toppings on the pizza with the cheese being the last thing that goes on the pizza. Place back into the oven until the cheese melts.

11. Enjoy!

IMG_3175

Look at that bad boy. It was packed with nutritional benefits and it had a ton of flavor. It was definitely one of the best cauliflower pizzas that I have made. You really can’t go wrong with caramelized onions. They are one of my favorite pizza toppings. The kale was actually really nice too because when it was in the oven it got crispy and turned more into kale chips. The sweet potato was a good alternative to pizza sauce because it was more creamy and smooth compared to the chunkier sauces that I have used. I was pretty much in a pizza coma. There was so much fiber packed into this that I was full for hours upon hours until I went to bed that night. That is a nutrition win if I do say so myself.

IMG_3177

The one mistake that I made was not spraying the pan with nonstick spray. It took me forever to get each slice off of the pan. It still tasted great though. The chicken was a good addition because it allowed me to get some protein while I was consuming all of this vegetables. I will definitely be making this again. It has inspired me to make some other kind of pizzas too, such as BBQ chicken pizza or a thai style pizza. I really like making the massive pizza instead of making 4 individual ones because it just provides with bigger slices and lots of little portions for me to eat throughout the week.

IMG_3176

I hope you enjoy my little slice of pizza heaven and have a good Tuesday. I’m going to be off to class soon, which consists of Nutrition Counseling and Food Nutrition and Behavior. Tuesdays are a long day for me, so I pack a ton of snacks to enjoy throughout the class. I will be having my leftover pizza for dinner though.

What is your favorite type of pizza?
What is the best topping on pizza?


Advertisements

A Taste of India: Rasika

Hey ya’ll! I know technically I didn’t blog for three days, which breaks my resolution, but I had no wifi or internet connection where I was, so I’m not going to count it! The weird thing is that I was in Washington DC, so you would assume that I would have wifi, but nope. They charged you a lot of money to access the hotel wifi, yep not doing it. Ya’ll had to live a few days without my awesomeness, which I know is pretty hard. So for the next few days I’m going to recap my trip to DC (which I love btw). Seriously I think I could live there. It would be a great place for a registered dietitian and there are sports teams (did I mention that I have an insane crush on the super sexy John Wall). So we got in around 4 to Baltimore and had to drive to DC. We didn’t have dinner reservations until about 9:45, so we tried to figure out what to do in the meantime.

IMG_2862

Say hello to my little friend. Lets stop lying to ourselves because this is actually HUGE. We ended up going to Moe’s Seafood in order to get a little snack to hold us over till 9:45. My younger brother and I ended up splitting an order of crab cakes. I was totally expecting some small dinky thing, but no these were enormous monsters of crab. Delicious succulent crab that is. The crab was so fresh, duh its Maryland, and it was packed with flavor. There wasn’t an overwhelming amount of breadcrumbs, which was nice because you mainly tasted the herbs and the crab. I was in heaven. I am a sucker for good seafood, especially crab cakes!

IMG_2863

My dad ended up getting an order of clams with some type of parmesan crust on top. They looked really good, but since there was only three I didn’t have any. That didn’t stop my little brother from taking one though. He seriously will take all your food even if you are in the middle of eating it. Happened multiple times throughout the trip. After our quick seafood snack, we hopped in our rental car and drove towards DC.

IMG_2865

Our 9:45 pm dinner reservations were at an Indian restaurant called Rasika. I had found this place on Eater’s guide to DC and from reviews on yelp. This was the best place to go. If you are ever in DC, I would definitely recommend going here. I want to ride the train down from NYC just to go here (lies because I also want to explore Georgetown more). Anyways this dish was Mango Shrimp. It was simplistic, but packed with tons of flavor. I love the hint of the mango in the glaze on the shrimp. The vegetable medley that came along with it went well and provided a more cooling effect with the hot shrimp.

IMG_2866

Oh you sweet potato samosas, how I love thee. You can’t really go wrong with anything that is wrapped in a fried wonton like wrapper. This was no exception. The sweet potato was a creamy mixture inside that went well with the crunch of the fried outside. The sweetness from the cranberry chutney was a nice addition to the dish. It provided a bit of a sour acidic flavor that balanced off the sweetness from the potato.

IMG_2867

Oh Palak Chaat, you are what dreams are made of. Really though. I have been craving this ever since. I can’t wait to look for this in NYC. That is how good it is. The spinach is crispy from being fried in hot oil. There is yogurt, tamarind, and dates in the mixture. There is also chopped tomatoes and red onion. I don’t think I can really explain this dish good enough to give it the justice that it deserves. The crunch of the spinach provides a good texture to be paired with the creamy smoothness of the yogurt. It was the most amazing thing. I am definitely going to try to remix this recipe into a healthier version (although the only bad thing is that it is fried).

IMG_2868

Hello Cauliflower Bezule. This was fried cauliflower. Hmmm there seems to be a trend here of fried food. What can I say? We southerners love to consume some fried foods. I do love cauliflower, so this was a definite thing that I had to get on the menu. It had mustard seeds, curry leaf, green chiles, and lemon juice. I liked the dish, but I thought it was just okay. I would have rather had more bowls of palak chaat. My brother seemed to really enjoy this though. It was a little too spicy for me.

IMG_2869

This sort of looks like green throw up set in small clams. Well it was really good tasting vomit. Hahaha. No I didn’t actually eat vomit. These were clams caldine. SO GOOD. There was coconut, green chiles, and cilantro. I think the coconut calmed down the spice from the green chiles because I didn’t get any kick from these. Instead it was more of a sweet tasting broth and sauce in the clams. They were amazing. We threw these back so quickly. When the bowl was empty, we all were pretty sad. I would definitely order these again.

IMG_2870

You need a good portion of naan bread at any meal that comes with a variety of stews, sauces, and broths. We used the naan to dip into the clam sauce, the curry, and the masala. It was such a good vehicle to get all that delicious food in my mouth.

IMG_2871

This was the chicken tikka masala. Oh how the naan tasted so good dipped into the sauce. This was a pretty great dish. It was packed with a ton of flavors from the Indian spices and the herbs. The chicken was cooked perfectly. It was tender and not overcooked. I felt like I was slowly disappearing into an Indian food coma.

IMG_2872

Oh shrimp curry, how sweet you are to me. It actually was really sweet, but in a good way. It was the Shrimp Kerala Curry. It had coconut milk, cumin, and black pepper. This was definitely my choice over the chicken dish because of the thick creamy texture from the coconut milk. I loved the sweetness that the dish had and it went perfectly with shrimp. Of course I dipped my naan into this.

IMG_2873

My oh My. I don’t remember the name of this dish, but it was amazing. It was pork chops with a mint leaf sauce to rub on top of it. The lamb was so tender and just fell off the bone. I actually picked my bone up and started eating off it in the restaurant. I’m gonna get all the meat possible. The waiter loved this dish so much that he told us on his days off he comes to Rasika to enjoy a malt and these lamb chops. We all loved the lambchops so much. Get these along with the palak chaat and you won’t regret it.

Now comes for the time when my brother decided to order four desserts. I really only wanted one or two to share, but no he thought that it would be a good idea to get four desserts. He pretty much ate most of all of them, which I was pretty impressed with.

IMG_2874

These were apple doughnuts, which I really enjoyed. They were thick instead of airy and light. It was a good thing though, which you normally wouldn’t want or expect with your doughnut. The plate was covered in pistachio crumbs and a vanilla ice cream. It was definitely a good choice for dessert. Oh if we only stopped at this one.

IMG_2876

This was the dessert that I had wanted to get. It was Shahi Tukra, which may be the best dessert. It was a bread pudding type of dessert. It came along with apricots, figs, mangoes, and cherries. I was in heaven. It even came along with some edible foil on the top. If you only get one dessert, which is probably the smartest idea, I would definitely get this one.

IMG_2877

This was Gulab Jamun. Another interesting Indian dessert. I was really excited to try this once I googled on my phone what it was. It was a sort of dumpling like dessert. It was served on top of a tropical fruit curd and with a scoop of nutella ice cream. I would definitely like to try this dish at another Indian place because I feel like it was really good, but I was so full and only had one or two bites, so I didn’t get to really taste the full potential of this dessert.

IMG_2875

I thought this was disgusting. My brother and dad enjoyed this a lot, so at least someone got some pleasurable tastes from it. The reason I didn’t like it was all the different textures and flavors mixed in one cake. This was the baked kulfi. It had a rose cream on top of orange saffron cake and topped with baked marshmallows. That is too many different things in one for me to enjoy. I did like the fruit on the side though.

Overall I definitely give this restaurant a five star. Our waiter was amazing, the food was delicious, and the atmosphere of the restaurant was so cute and whimsical. It was the perfect way to start out our food adventures in dc.

What is your favorite Indian dish?
Have you ever been to DC?

The Perfect Roommate Date

Hey ya’ll! I hope everyone has had a pretty great weekend. Mine has been awesome even with all the studying and paper writing that I have had to do. One of the highlights of the weekend was going on my roommate date. My roommates and I decided that we have been having and still will have this graduate school hell weeks that we needed a nice night out. We decided to get sushi for this roommate dinner, so I looked up places and found a delicious one that would suit all our needs. I ended up making reservations online at Open Table, which was a smart idea because this place was crazy when we got there.

photo 1(2)

This place was amazing for many reasons, but one of them was for the drinks. They had a happy hour from 5-9 pm that had 2 for 8$ cocktails. That is a steal. Seriously. The first weekend I went out in New York, I ordered a vodka and tonic, and had to pay 12$ for one small drink. WHAT? This is not the world that I want to be buying drinks in, so getting two for that price was amazing. These drinks were strong too, so we were feeling a little buzzed. This was a grapefruit cocktail that my roommate got. We all enjoyed our drinks so much.

photo 2(2)

I got a drink called the Rainbow. It had citrus vodka, blue curaco, and pineapple juice. It was delicious. After one drink, I wasn’t really sure how I was going to have another, so I’m glad that the waiter didn’t come back to get our second drink order until after we had gotten some sushi in our stomachs. We were in drink heaven though. This would definitely be a good place to go if you just wanted drinks too, but the food was just as amazing. Not to mention the awesome staff.

photo 4(1)

One of my roommates is a vegetarian, so she ordered vegetable tempura as her appetizer. It was cool because you could specifically pick what vegetables or items you wanted as tempura, it came with two pieces, and depending on the item it was only 2-3$. She let Carrianne and I split the zucchini piece and it was delicious. It was perfectly fried on the outside and the vegetable was soft on the inside. She ended up getting broccoli, asparagus, and zucchini. The pieces were so large though, so you definitely needed to cut them up. Also they only give you chopsticks here, so if you aren’t good with them, definitely ask if you can get a fork and knife.

photo 5(1)

Carrianne and I ended up splitting an appetizer. We got bacon wrapped scallops. These were so good. The bacon was so smoky, so it enhanced the simple flavor and texture of the scallop. The sauce on top was delicious. It was a sweet flavor mixed with a hint of the green onion. It was a nice light way to start the meal. It definitely didn’t provide any substance in our stomachs as we threw back our drinks.

photo 1(1)

Hello to sushi heaven. Did I order way too many rolls? Yes, but oh well. I managed to eat almost all of it. I attribute this to the alcohol in a small way and my determination to consume some of the best and affordable sushi that was available. On this plate is a pumpkin tempura roll, a heart throb roll, and a bagel roll. Lets talk about how cheap this sushi was. The pumpkin tempura roll was only 4.50$! The heart throb was 12$ and the bagel was 10$. In my opinion that is pretty good for crazy specialty rolls. Some places can charge up to 15 for just your basic specialty roll, so I was excited to see that there were so many affordable options.

photo 2(1)The heart throb roll was definitely my favorite. It had spicy tuna wrapped around the roll. Inside was eel crabmeat, avocado, and spicy tuna. There was also a spicy mayo drizzled all over the roll. The fish was extremely fresh. I love when a roll is wrapped with fish on the outside because it gives it a meatier taste. The sauce gave it a nice creamy texture along with the avocado inside. I finished this roll like a champion.

photo 3

This was the pumpkin tempura roll. It was just your simple pumpkin tempura along with some small things inside. It was so delicious. The fried texture gave a nice crunch to the roll while the pumpkin was smooth and creamy. It was a savory and sweet kind of roll. I am obsessed with all things pumpkin right now, so this roll definitely hit the spot. Plus it was only 4.50$. I probably could have survived on a few of these rolls and only paid 13$. That would have been pretty awesome, but I like to try different things.

photo 4

Bagel roll. You know when we Jews see the word bagel we are instantly attracted to it. I think that is pretty much why I ordered the roll. Besides the fact that cream cheese and salmon is like the best combination (just another Jewish obsession). It was lightly fried on the outside, which was awesome. The roll also had spinach and asparagus inside. I think it could have done without the spinach, but it was still appetizing and delicious.

image

Hello to Carrianne’s plate of sushi. The funny thing was when she ordered her food, the waiter said that she needed to stop ordering because that was too much food for her. She was gonna get a third roll, but then she just decided to go with what she got. Smart girl. I wish the waiter would have said the same thing to me and my other roommate because we were so full by the time we tried to eat all our sushi. She got the pumpkin tempura roll too along with a piece of salmon nigiri. Also a roll with salmon and jalapenos. She enjoyed all of hers.

photo 5

Here was my other roommate’s plate of sushi. She ordered all vegetarian rolls. The cool thing was that they had about 20 vegetarian rolls on the menu, which is definitely a nice thing for vegetarians and people that are more health conscious (not that sushi is that unhealthy for you). She got the sweet potato tempura roll, which looked just as good as the pumpkin one. Since she ordered three rolls too, she was about to burst. We were both in a sushi coma.

photo 2

For our second drink, we all three got something called the Asuka-tini. Oh man. How strong was this thing? I thought I was going to die. It was tequila, sake, triple sec, and grenadine. I was like oh man. Plus it was super salty. I should have asked for mine without salt on the rim because I ended up knocking half the salt into the drink. I powered through and drank all of it. I was feeling a good buzz at this point and we decided to get jello shots for us. They were raspberry flavored and probably the best jello shots I have ever had. It tasted like real raspberries were in it. The waiter was so nice too. He gave us a free jello shot on the house. Overall it was a really great experience, and we will definitely be going back here many times.

What is your favorite date food?
Have you ever had crazy sushi rolls?

 

 

 

Burger Heaven in The City

Hey ya’ll! I survived my first graduate school midterm. I feel pretty good about it, but there were a few true or false questions that kind of sent my brain through a loop. Especially because one of the questions we had never talked about, but oh well. I feel happy with my success so far as a graduate student and hope that I will continue on with it. We are only allowed to get two Bs in a certain number of classes to continue on the program, so I’m super motivated to do awesome. Anyways I am going to share with you an awesome review of the best burger I have had so far in NYC. Bareburger. There are a ton of locations in the city, but we ended up going to the location on 46th st. It was such a fun atmosphere. We only had to wait a few minutes, so that was nice, especially because the third person in our party was running late.

photo 1

The menu was huge. It was really hard to pick because there were so many delicious looking options. You could order a premade type of burger, which came with a bunch of toppings and a general theme, and then you could choose the type of meat that you wanted with it. There was also the build your own burger, which you could pick toppings, bun, and meat. The different themed burgers looked so good, and each even suggested the type of meat that tastes best with those toppings. While we waited for my friend to show up, Carrianne and I ended up looking through the menu and debating back and forth over what we were going to get. While we waited, Carrianne got a ginger soda, which was delicious and we ordered an appetizer.

photo 3

We ended up getting sweet potato croqs. These were sweet potatoes with sharp cheddar cheese and they are deep fried. They were served with habanero chipotle mayo and stone ground honey mustard. These were little fried balls of heaven. The sweet potato texture was smooth and the bread crumbs gave a nice crunch to it. The cheese inside made it very creamy. The sauces were amazing. I definitely couldn’t pick a favorite. They ended up giving us two other sauces, which were BBQ and a spicy ketchup. There was a good amount in the basket, which was nice. We ended up eating this so quickly. We were starving. They were served really hot too, which is a nice thing because apparently some establishments don’t serve hot food.

photo 2

Aren’t these so cute? They were the regular ketchup and dijon mustard containers. I loved that the restaurant actually had a bear theme to the whole place. There were bear heads (not real ones) on the walls, that were painted different colors and patterns. It just made the ambiance of the restaurant really fun and entertaining. There was so much to look at and see.

photo 1(1)

I was debating over getting the big blue bacon or the maui wowie. I ended up choosing maui wowie because I can’t resist pineapple and turkey bacon. The burger came with smoked mozzarella, pineapple ring, turkey bacon, fried onions, fried roasted red peppers, and buttermilk ranch. Bareburger recommended getting the burger wild boar, but I ended up just getting beef with mine. I ordered my meat medium and got it on a brioche roll. The bread was amazing. It was toasted to perfection, so it wasn’t soggy when the burger and sauce soaked through. The meat was cooked exactly as I ordered and was extremely juicy. The toppings were the most appetizing combination ever. The crunch and smokiness of the turkey bacon went well with the sweetness of the pineapple. The spice from the peppers was cooled off by the buttermilk ranch, which also gave the burger a nice creamy texture when you bit into it.

photo 2(1)

I mean just look at this burger. It is heaven staring right back at me. I can’t wait to go back to try more burgers. This place sort of reminds me of Hopdoddy in Austin, TX, which is one of my favorite burger places ever, so this obviously means that Bareburger is legit. The best thing about this place is that there is more than just burgers on the menu. They have a breakfast brunch menu, breakfast paninis, and so much more. I pretty much have decided that I am going to go here at least once a month, so that I can enjoy a new thing on the menu every time!

photo 4

We ended up splitting a large basket of onion rings and fries. The onion rings were the bomb. The breading on the onions were seasoned and fried perfectly, meaning they weren’t too crunchy or soft. The onion rings were so good that I wish we just would have ordered an entire basket of onion rings. Not that the fries were bad because they were actually golden and crispy, but soft on the inside. I just loved the onion rings so much that it was sad when there were no more left. Of course they came with more types of dipping sauces, which was awesome.

photo 5

Carrianne ended up getting the Big Blue Bacon. It had Wisconsin Blue Cheese, country bacon, sauteed mushrooms, fried onions, and bacon marmalade. The burger was recommended with ostrich, but she ended up getting beef. She ordered her beef to be medium well. Also she ordered hers on a brioche bun. She was in a burger coma as she chewed through hers. She said it was delicious. The bacon marmalade had a sweet, yet smoky flavor that went nicely with the cooked vegetables. The cheese was also not overwhelming, which was nice. My other friend ended up getting the same burger as me, but without the buttermilk ranch. After our meal, our stomachs were so full that we could barely walk. We ended up going along the water, but our stomachs were so full that we had to sit on a bench for a good amount of time before we could continue our journey. All in all, I recommend bareburger as a must if you are visiting NYC or if you live here and haven’t already gone! It is a burger paradise.

What is your favorite topping on a burger?
What is the craziest meat you have ever had a burger with?

Sweet Potato Nachos

Hey ya’ll! I have a delicious recipe in store for you. Now that I live in New York City, I’m pretty far away from my delicious Mexican food (although I live in a Dominican neighborhood, so I’m at least getting some Spanish food in my life). I decided that I wanted to make something Mexican inspired in honor of my home. However Mexican food is full of fat, calories, and food items that are not so healthy for you. That gave me the idea to “healthify” one of my favorite dishes: Nachos! I could have made tortilla chips from baking corn tortillas, but that is the easy way out. I ended up making my base or chips from baked sweet potatoes.

photo(2)

Sweet Potato Nachos

2 small sweet potatoes
1-2 tsp of olive oil
1 pinch of garlic powder
any other spices or seasonings you want to add
Cheese of choice (I used fat free Mexican Blend)

Topping ideas:

Cilantro
Tomatoes
Jalapenos
Onions
Black Beans
Banana Peppers
Chives
Chicken/Beef

photo(1)

1. Preheat oven to 350. Wash your sweet potatoes and peel them until there is no skin left.

2. Then slice both potatoes in thin round slices.

3. Place in a small container, pour in olive oil, and mix well.

4. Place slices on a baking sheet and sprinkle with garlic powder. If you have added other spices, sprinkle them on at this point.

5. Place in the oven and bake for 35 minutes.

photo(3)

6. Take it out of the oven, but leave the oven on. Then sprinkle on cheese. Depending on personal preference you can either add on the rest of the toppings now or wait until all the cheese is melted. Personally I put the toppings on then put the cheese on top because it made the toppings cheesier (ya’ll know I love cheese). Then place in the oven to monitor until the cheese is melted.

7. Enjoy!

This was the perfect dish. I wish I would have had more things to place on as toppings, but I had forgotten things such as avocado at the supermarket. Next time I will definitely be having black beans and avocado on top of my nachos. It would have been creamy and delicious. Plus including more protein would help you stay fuller. I added Greek yogurt on top of mine instead of sour cream. It was a much better option that putting sour cream on it. Sweet potatoes are a much better option than regular tortilla chips for a variety of reasons. Sweet potatoes are extremely high in vitamin B6, which helps reduce homocysteine in our bodies. Homocysteine has been connected to a variety of diseases and has even shown a role in heart attacks, so eating more sweet potatoes is definitely a good move for those that are heart health conscious. Other nutrients that sweet potatoes contain are Vitamin C, Vitamin D, iron, magnesium, and potassium. While that is a long list, one of the most important and well known compounds that sweet potatoes contain is carotenoids. More specifically, sweet potatoes are packed with beta-carotene, which helps with eye function and to boost our immune systems. Besides the many health benefits of sweet potatoes, they are extremely versatile to cook with. Just look at my recipe! You can make sweet potato chips. How awesome is that?!

photo

I just look at these and it makes my mouth salivate. Thank god I bought 2 lbs of sweet potatoes at Trader Joe’s! But actually I wont be making these anytime soon because I have a ton of different sweet potato recipes for ya’ll coming up sometime soon. I hope everyone had an awesome Sunday! Mine has been extra special since the University of Texas Longhorns won against no. 2 Stanford today in volleyball (not to mention that they also beat number 1 Penn State the day before). Hook em! Ya’ll know how much I love my volleyball. It has been hard not being able to go to the games, especially since they were extremely exciting this weekend. My mom and brother went, so at least they were sending me the scores, videos, and hilarious quotes from the crazy people in the audience!

See ya’ll tomorrow!

What do you like to do with sweet potatoes?
Do you eat other foods with carotenoids and Vitamin A in them?

A Birthday Dinner

Hey ya’ll! I hope everyone had an awesome weekend. My Sunday was pretty great. I had volleyball practice with my girls, which was super fun, and then we went to help raise money for the maccabi organization at a wing bar in Austin. Only a few of the girls went after practice, but it was fun to spend time outside volleyball with them. Anyways for today I have a restaurant review of a trendy place in Austin known as Paggi House. We ended up going for my grandfather’s birthday this year, and in years past. My uncle deals wine to the restaurant, so it is always extremely great service when we go.

photo(5)

This looks interesting. It was cast iron wild mushrooms topped with panko crusted cheese and garden fresh herbs. The cheese melted in your mouth and provided a nice crunch from the panko breading. It went along great with the mushrooms. The mushrooms were perfectly cooked and sauteed in the cast iron pan. I wish we would have had more of this dish because it was that delicious. I really enjoyed the appetizers throughout the night. The mushrooms tasted like butter and when paired with the cheese it was like tasty explosions in your mouth.

photo(4)

Sorry about the dark images, the restaurant was dark and only lit with candles at our table and the light from outside. This was a sweet potato soup topped panko crusted chevre, red curry and fennel. Paggi house must really love fried cheese balls. Not that I’m complaining because they are the most amazing thing to ever exist. Cheese is definitely one of the greatest foods in the world, so a fried ball of it is great. This soup was creamy and rich. The sweet potato flavor was not overwhelming, and the cheese melted in the soup so it made it sweeter and creamier. The herbs provided a certain flavor to the dish, which was very enjoyable.

photo(3)

If my entree wasn’t so mind blowing, I would say this was the best dish of the night. It was the special small plate of the evening. It was pork belly topped with apples, foam, and a sweet aoili sauce. It was the amazing. The pork belly was so tender and packed with a ton of flavor. While the apples provided a nice crunch to the soft meat. The sauce was creamy and rich, which just added to the variety of flavors that was packed into this small plate. We ended up ordering three of these for the table, and I totally kept snatching bites of it.

photo(6)

This picture is the worst, but the dish was so delicious. It was grilled tuna tataki. It had pickled ginger, avocado, basil, and orange gastrique. The tuna was extremely fresh. It was a light appetizer that provided a ton of flavor in such as small dish. My grandma loves raw tuna appetizers, so we of course ordered two of these. In my opinion, I’ve had better tuna tataki. However if you don’t consume a lot of raw tuna then you will probably think this dish is amazing.

photo(2)

Hello to the star of the night. This may have been one of the best pieces of fish I have ever had. This was the special of the night. It was gulf red snapper with crab meat and avocado. The fish was extremely fresh. The crab meat was such a great addition to the dish. I can’t remember the sauce on it, but it was extremely light and had a hint of lemon in it. The meat just flaked off the snapper with every single bite.

photo(1)

It was perfectly pan-fried. The fish was crispy in just the right amount. This may have been the best dinner I have had at Paggi House. We have been there three times for my grandpa’s birthday, but this definitely was the shining moment of the restaurant. In my opinion, they should make this special a regular on the menu since it is so delicious. I think that it would sell a lot. My mom and I both ordered the dish, so obviously it will be popular. Who doesn’t like crab meat on top of a perfectly cooked fish? A sick person that is who.

photo

For dessert, they had made an Italian cream cake. I am definitely not a fan of this cake. It tasted more like a weird version of banana bread. I’m a simple girl when it comes to birthday cake. I like buttercream icing and white cake. To be honest, someone could just buy me a container of delicious buttercream icing and I would just eat that with a candle in it. I love it that much.

 

I hope you have a fantastic Monday!
What is your favorite type of birthday cake?
Where do you like to go eat on your birthday?

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.

DSCN0009

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.