restaurant review – la cai noodle house

If you have never had Vietnamese pho you have not lived yet.  I mean, how can delicious broth, thai basil, jalapeños, cabbage, cilantro, bean sprouts, and onions go wrong
?

Well, it could potentially but it dosen’t at la cai noodle house.   B&I enjoyed pho a few times this winter, and it is one of the best filling, fresh, tasty dishes (and cheap!) in the city.

I have no complaints about this place.  The atmosphere is great.  The service is good.  The scene is diverse.  And the food is amazing.

We ordered the brsiket and beef tradiitonal pho & the bum bun rum.   So good.

And, they have an awesome fish tank!

Go try some pho in your area.  You won’t be disappointed.

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how long will butternut squash last?

the last butternut of the year.  lasts till spring.

the last butternut of the year. lasts till spring.

‘Till spring.  And i’m not even mad about it. Just make sure to keep’em cold.

gluten free banana bread vs. banana almond muffins

Tonight we spend the evening at home.  It’s been snowing off and on all day.  We watched shows and cleaned and did laundry.  Not very exciting but was good.  I had 7 bananas that were ripe and in need of being  used.  When it’s cold outside and we are cozy inside I feel like eating warm and filling foods.  I found a really cool blog and tried out two of her banana bread/muffin recipes.   I decided to go gluten free so I can share them with my lil’sis tomorrow.  It will make her day to have a gluten free treat.

http://heathereatsalmondbutter.com/2013/02/23/bah-nana-bread/

vs.

http://heathereatsalmondbutter.com/recipes/almond-butter-banana-muffins/

My thoughts?

The bah-nana-bread as she calles it, was easier to make, fluffy and really good.  MizS loved it.  I didn’t have sour cream so I added an extra banana and 1/4 c cottage cheese.  I also only did 1/4 c or less of sugar.  It was significantly lighter than the muffins.  I only had to cook for about 45-50 minutes, so watch it closely.  I’ll totally make this again!

The muffins take 1/4 the time to cook.  They are hearty and tasty.  I added agave instead of the fancy non-sugar sugars she has on her recipe.  They were delicious with a litte butter.  B loved them (more than my berry muffins).  I’ll make them again as they felt hearty and filling being made with oat flour and they were great!  I’ll also cut back on the choc chips!

Don’t you love the internets and all of the amazing people you can connect with and all the delicious recipes, amazing ideas, and fascinating stories.

sometimes you need to celebrate – settebello

Sometimes life is really awesome.  Like when B get’s a really good new job.  You just need to take him out to dinner and make him hot breakfast and celebrate that life is good.  I feel like we are often blessed more than we deserve.  God is good.

We went to settebello, an authentic Italian restaurant that is absolutely delicious.  Their margarita pizza is incredible.  We also tried a prosciutto wrap – filled with arugula and goat cheese and one of the ensalada’s.  I got all gitty eating the greens looking forward to this summer when I can pull them out of my garden.

I made some blueberry muffins the next day for breakfast, I was going to try and surprise B with breakfast in bed but he woke up and heard me in the kitchen.  He was still pretty happy about the muffin situation.  I modified my muffin recipe from last time and added 1/2 cup white flour, they were lighter and fluffier and still hearty.

We are excited for life to take a positive turn with B’s new job!

carrots

I love carrots.  I love eating them cooked.  I love eating them raw.   I am a fan.   I buy the big bags of carrots and add them to lots of things.  Luckily B likes them too.

For the past couple years i’ve participated in a food co-op called bountiful baskets pretty consistently.  I love it because for $15 plus tax my fridge is stocked with fruits and veggies for a really great price.  It is about half the price of going to the supermarket and I love the variety and adventure of trying new things.  This week we got colored carrots which was exciting because they are usually a bit pricy at the store so we loved sampling them and seeing the different flavors.  The purple one tasted similar to a beet, the yellow was more sweet than just typical orange.   Moral of the story, colored carrots are cool.  I’m going to grow them in the garden this summer.

We made a teriyaki stir fry and use the pretty carrots in them.  This is B’s cooking face.  That is what he said when I took the pic.  Note, our beautiful yellow 70’s  kitchen.

carrot bouquetB's cooking face

*B made fun of this post as I’m writing it.  He turned to me and said “you should write a post about how you love carrots”.  He thinks he is so funny.  He then gave me 10 kisses.  I like that guy.  And he is actually really funny.

whole wheat banana waffles

Tonight we needed some comfort food for dinner.   Not only is it free-to-the-zing out side but B didn’t have the greatest day.  Sometimes people are lame, nuff said.  So, I decided that we needed some waffles.  He had a singer/songwriter over for a evening session in the studio so I whipped up some of these babies and they were money I tell you. MONEY!  They loved them.  So, without further adieu I give you…Whole wheat waffles.

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Whole wheat banana waffles.  Adapted from this reipe .  I don’t have the beautiful photos but you still get the point.

2 cups whole wheat flour
2 eggs, beaten (I beat mine by hand 60 times)
1 3/4 cup skim milk (I used 2%…I no likey skim)
4 tsp. baking powder
2 ripe bananas, mashed
1 tsp. agave
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg (I did not have nutmeg and it was fine without it!)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Mashed the bananas and whisked the eggs prior to adding them.  Add everything to the same bowl, mixed up until  smooth and fluffy.  Cook on medium heat on the waffle iron. Don’t add batter until the waffle iron is hot.  Make sure to spray the waffle iron, but you know that already!  Yield: 9 delicious waffles.  I served with fresh strawberries, bannans and maple syrup.
We were some happy humans 🙂

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Proof that everything was just thrown into on bowl.  It came out great!

P.S.  This is what $24 can get you thorough the food co-op we participate in.  Affordable healthy eating.  YES!

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easy roasting

There is just something about winter that makes me want to eat lots of veggies, warm and roasty style.  I’ve been really into roasting lately, it’s easy, its’ filling and I can use whatever I have on hand and it tastes really great.

Here is what you do.

You cut up whatever veggies you have on hand; anything that is in your veggie drawer will work.  I have  a 25lb bag of potatoes and 25lb bag of onions in my basement that are pretty much staples at every winter time meal for us.   You just prep everything, throw in some olive oil and some spices on it and put it in the oven at about 350ish for an hour.   Frozen veggies will work too but just aren’t as tasty as fresh.  I paired it with a butternut squash I had from my garden.  Isin’t it the best feeling to eat food from your garden in January.  Love that.

easy roast

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Serves: 2-3

-4 frozen chicken tenderloins
-4 carrots
-1 onion
-1 large potato
-2T olive oil
-Salt & Pepper
-Any other spices you enjoy (I use sage, basil and a 21 spice belnd from trader joes & red pepper flakes for a kick)
-Opt. a little water for moisture

Enjoy!!

p.s. I roasted again tonight and I added a medley of colored carrots, brussel sprouts, potatoes and peppers.  I’m out of onions so you can use whatever you have on hand!