Archive for the ‘food’ Category

posted by on Excursions, food, Travel

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4 out of 5

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Last year, I had the opportunity to dine at Lautrec at Nemacolin Woodlands in Farmington, PA. I was at the hotel on unrelated business with some time to kill. The restaurant was recommended to me by the hotel staff. I was immediately taken with the name, Lautrec. It is in reference to the well known painter Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. You may recall a portrayal of him in the film Moulin Rouge by actor John Leguizamo.

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The name was most likely chosen due to the fact that Lautrec was French and this restaurant specializes in upscale European style dining. The decor, mood and service was fabulous. A red and gold color scheme were utilized. The wait staff was both friendly and prompt.

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nemacolin food

The food was delicious and affordable considering the style of the restaurant. I would say that the menu is medium priced though it is a fine dining restaurant where I would expect to pay more. I ordered a lox bagel with all of the fixings and an orange juice. This was the first time I had an actual bagel prepared with lox and salmon. The juice was good. The bagel was amazing. Everything on it was fresh and delicious. The juice was around $3 and the bagel meal was a bit over $10. My father had the classic breakfast. He enjoyed his meal as well.

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The bathrooms for the restaurant are both stylish (heavy on the gold decor) and cleanly. I highly recommend this establishment to anyone visiting the area.

You can check out the official site for this restaurant here

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** (out of 5)

Archer Farms Gyro Pizza

As a fan of basically pizza flavored anything it’s not at all unusual for me to randomly choose a new frozen pizza to try. I recently picked this one up at Target for about $4. Last week I bought one covered in tomatoes, thinking they were meat in passing (did my eyes get worse?). It’s pizza so it’s usually a safe bet, right? Here, not so much.

I’ve had other Archer Farms pizzas, including the Mediterranean Arugula & Tomato and Spinach and Goat Cheese. They were quite yummy. When I spotted this gyro inspired pizza I was intrigued. My mind immediately went back to the last gyro I ate (over the summer in Philly, delicious) and that cheese steak pizza from Domino’s. Sure this wouldn’t be as great as either of those but a girl can imagine.

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The box boasts the following ingredients, cooked “gyro meat”, tomatoes, onions, a Greek yogurt sauce and feta cheese. As an adventurous pizza goer that sounded just fine to me. The directions recommend cooking it for 13-15 minutes at 425F until the crust is golden brown. It took my oven about 12 minutes to slightly burn it. Yes, my oven is also an overachiever. A “wood-fired” pizza can totally pull off a bit of a burn though.

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A suggested pairing for this pizza is a salad of spinach, kalamata olives, fresh herbs and sliced red onion. I was, um, out of all of that. I still had put together a salad as I always follow the direct orders of a pizza box.So I went with the items pictured above. Salad ingredients or random fridge leftovers? You decide. The recommended serving is 1/3rd of the pizza. I usually cut these into 6 pieces. Then I eat 2 of them, resulting in exactly the serving size! (Nailing it).

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Verdict? I feel somewhat let down about pizza in general at this moment. The cooked “gyro meat” (beef, lamb, water, bread crumbs) was okay. I loved the crust. Thin crusts are my favorite. The rest of it was a mess. I know this is Greek and Greek yogurt is super popular right now (just ask John Stamos), but it’s unfortunately tart on this pizza. How about never put yogurt on a pizza? Thanks. The tomatoes and onion were bland. In fact I just ate this and didn’t realize there were even tomatoes on it. A member of my family chimed in that the onions tasted boiled. Gross. Feta cheese doesn’t lend itself to melting, which looks super odd on a pizza. I could barely taste this feta. It was overwhelmed by the yogurt sauce. Blech.

Pass. That “salad” was tastier.

Nutrition Facts:
(for 1/3 pizza)
250 calories
90 calories from fat
10 grams of fat
3 grams of saturated fat
0 grams of trans fat
10 milligrams of cholesterol
730 milligrams of sodium
32 grams of carbohydrates
2 grams of dietary fiber
3 grams of sugar
10 grams of protein

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I did not invent this recipe. I simply altered it. However I bake so infrequently and these were so yummy that I had to share. This is my slightly altered version of Chocolate Covered Katie’s Peanut Butter Gingerbread Chocolate Chunk Cookies. Her recipe seemed light on the ingredients so I doubled it. Of course my doubled version made about as many cookies as her original version so her cookies were smaller but lower in calories.

You just have to try these. Definitely go check out her site for the original version. She is the queen of healthy desserts.

Ingredients:
1 cup almond butter (the Target brand, which is the only store in my area that sells any type of nut butter that isn’t peanut)
1 tsp cinnamon
2/3 cup brown sugar
2 packets of Nectresse
1.5 tsp baking soda
6 tbsp white flour
1 shake of salt
6 tbsp butterscotch chips
4 tbsp applesauce
2 tsp imitation vanilla flavoring

Directions:
Pour everything in a bowl and stir until it’s mixed well. Scoop them into small balls. (I used a small plastic Jelly Belly ice cream scoop, they still came out average sized.) Put the balls into the freezer for 10 minutes while preheating your oven at 350 degrees. Remove cookie balls from the freezer. Spray liquid I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter in your baking pan(s). Place cookie balls in the pan(s) about a half inch a part. Cook for 12 minutes. Remove cookies from oven. Let them cool for a half hour. EAT!

Makes about 15 cookies

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This post brought to you by NECTRESSE™Sweetener. All opinions are 100% mine.

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Recently I was sent a box of  NECTRESSE™Sweetener to try. The difference between this sweetener and other sweeteners on the market is that it is the only sweetener made from monk fruit extract. It is 100% natural and contains zero calories per serving.  It is 150 times sweeter than sugar and can be used in cooking and baking. Nectresse Sweetener is available in both convenient single serve packets (40 servings) and easy to hold canisters (140 servings) with a multipurpose lid for sprinkling, pouring or spooning.

Included with my sample box of Nectresse was a list of recipes that I could try this new sweetener in. Many of them struck my fancy but the apple cinnamon pancake recipe that they included sounded too delicious not to make.

In addition to the Nectresse, using cinnamon in my own pancakes was new to me. It gave them quite a tasty flavor. When I made mine I didn't need as many so I halved the recipe. The recipe above makes 12 small pancakes. I halved it and made 3 medium to large sized pancakes. I also used margarine instead of butter and a granny smith apple (my favorite!) instead of your average apple. (Please check out the end of this post for nutrition information for the above recipe).

 

Just look at the finished breakfast above, mouthwatering! After they were done I finished them up by topping them with sugar free syrup, margarine and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Believe me, I couldn't tell that these pancakes were made using Nectresse in place of sugar. They were sooo yummy.

You know what else is neat about Nectresse? Lisa Ling is the Nectresse Sweetener spokesperson! I grew up with watching this great journalist advance from the school system's Channel One news network to The View. Lisa has a family history of diabetes so she has always been cautious about her sugar intake. She has relied on no calorie sweeteners to satisfy her sweet tooth but she hasn’t liked any as much as Nectresse!

Nectresse Sweetener is now available now in grocery stores, drug stores, supercenters and online for suggested retail prices of $3.99 (packets) and $6.99 (canisters). Why not go try it yourself today?

Guess what? You can even get a FREE sample of NECTRESSE™Sweetener !

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This post brought to you by Hpnotiq. All opinions are 100% mine.

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If you like to party with your gal pals. And frankly, who doesn't? Then you know that half the fun is getting ready and chilling together before you even leave your pad. Well prepare to get your hair down, music up! with this fantastic new site from Hpnotiq.

Reviewing Opportunity :: (P) Primp & Prep with Hpnotiq! :: SocialSpark

Primp & Prep  is a new site from the classic party liquor  Hpnotiq .

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The site features everything that you and your chicks need to get revved up for a night out on the town. You will find fashion and beauty tips. Are you into the style of the hottest celebs such as Blake Lively and Kelly Rowland? Well, prepare to be inspired by them and more on the Primp and Prep site. You may even catch a bit of celeb gossip while visiting.

But that's not all. You will also be able to access a Pandora music player with awesome dance songs to get you jazzed about going out.

Of course since it is Hpnotiq you will also find dope cocktail recipes.

It's definitely difficult for me to choose a favorite part of Hpnotiq ‘s hot, new site. I mean, you get fun music, hot style tips and tasty recipes. How could I possibly choose just one?

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