What I Ate Wednesday #63

It’s Wednesday! And you know what that means, another wonderful What I Ate Wednesday is in store. This time it’s extra special, as I’m documenting a day last week that my sister and I went on a chocolate tour of New York! We lucked out with sunny skies and temps in the sixties, and enjoyed walking around NYC for about two and half hours stopping to eat at 8 different chocolate shops!

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Before we headed out for the chocolate tour my sister and I both enjoyed a breakfast of blueberry bran muffins and bananas.

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Shortly after breakfast we headed into the city. Here is the huge group of people waiting in line for the chocolate tour to begin! Luckily we were split into two groups so the tours weren’t too overcrowded.

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First stop on our tour: Li-Lac Chocolates.

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We were served a morsel of 72% dark chocolate and a piece of their specialty butter crunch toffee. Although the toffee technically had no chocolate involved, it clearly stole the show for our first stop. It was incredible!

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Next stop: The Chocolate Bar.

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Here we tasted dark chocolate with chili. It was a delicious bite with a hint of heat!

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Our third stop was the famous Magnolia Bakery.

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Such a cute place and window display!

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At this stop we ate a mini chocolate chocolate cupcake. This was probably the best chocolate frosting I’ve ever eaten. I am not usually a big frosting fan, but this kind was so smooth and creamy and chocolatey I just couldn’t get enough!

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We walked some more and made it to the Milk & Cookies Bakery.

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Here we had a double chocolate chip cookie. They were thick and chewy, just the way I like my cookies!

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Pit stop number five was Bisousciao Macarons.

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Normally I do not care for macarons, but this 72% dark chocolate macaron was one of my favorites of the whole tour! It was served slightly chilled and was pure heaven. The merengue cookie on the outside was delightful, and the filling was silky smooth. Delicious!

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I liked it so much I actually bought a lemon macaron to take home with me. Look at how beautiful they are! My sister loved hers too, and so she ended up buying a lavender honey and sour cherry macaron to bring home!

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Next up was the Pasticceria Bruno Bakery and Cafe.

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We had a scrumptious cannoli. Probably the best cannoli I’ve ever had.

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Xocolatti was the most upscale chocolate shop I’ve ever seen. A super small but very chic store front!

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Here we had a white chocolate with mango and paprika. Unfortunately I just don’t care for white chocolate, so this wasn’t that memorable. My sister and I both agreed if it were a dark chocolate with mango and paprika it would have been way better!

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Finally, our last stop was to Vosges.

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We had a teeny bite of their Bapchi’s Caramel Toffee Bar. It was a milk chocolate, so for us dark chocolate lovers it was just okay.

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Overall, we had a wonderful time on this tour and ate lots of delicious chocolates! I’d do another food tour like this in a heartbeat. After we finished the tour we headed over to meet up our brother for lunch at the 5 Oz. Factory in Greenwich Village. It’s a restaurant owned by a fellow Wisconsinite and serves Wisconsin cheese, custard, soda and more.

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My sister and brother both got a Sprecher root beer. The best root beer you’ll ever have and it comes straight from Wisconsin.

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I ordered a cheese and veggie quesadilla for lunch. Didn’t blow my mind but it hit the spot!

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We had a lot of fun. I think we were the only Wisconsinites in the restaurant, so we thought we’d take a picture. Wisconsin represent.

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That evening when dinner rolled around I wasn’t all that hungry, but I did eat a peanut butter sandwich.

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And an orange. That hit the spot!

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Late that evening my sibs and I watched the movie Clifford (with Martin Short, not a big red dog), which is an old favorite of ours. And along with it I finished the last of my chocolate cookie I got earlier on my tour…and then I had a rice cake. This was one of the best days I’ve had in a long time! Sunshine, warm weather, walking outside, family, and good food. The perfect day!

Make sure to stop on by Jenn’s page to see all the other WIAW posts!

TGIW,

Sydney

 

Homemade Banana Bread

Banana bread. Simple and delicious. A timeless classic.

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This banana bread is ultra-bananay, perfectly moist and dense.

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It’s a healthy recipe that tastes glorious morning, noon, or night!

Homemade Banana Bread

Makes one loaf

Inspired by Minimalist Baker

1 flax egg

3 overly ripe, medium sized bananas, mashed

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

3 tbsp plain greek yogurt

1/3 cup unsweetened almond milk

1/4 cup brown sugar

3 and 1/2 tsp baking powder

Dash of sea salt

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 and 1/4 cup almond meal

1 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup old fashioned oats

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees and making the flax egg. To make the flax egg combine 1 tbsp of ground flax seed with 3 tbsp of water in a small dish and freeze it for about 5 minutes, or until mixture thickens.

While the flax egg is chilling, simply combine the bananas, vanilla, yogurt, almond milk and brown sugar in a large mixing bowl. Give it a good stir, then add in the remaining ingredients. Stir again, and then add in the flax egg. Stir to combine one final time.

Grease a loaf pan with non-stick spray, pour batter in pan and bake for about 1 hour and 15 minutes (or until a knife inserted in the middle of the loaf comes out clean). Enjoy!

I love bread,

Sydney

What I Ate Wednesday #62

It’s that time again…It’s Wednesday, people! And I’ve got lots of yummy food to share!

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I started off last Friday with a delicious piece of homemade banana bread. This is one of the most scrumptious banana breads I’ve had, and it is unbelievably simple to make and healthy to boot. Check back on Friday for the recipe!

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Along with a slice of the b-bread I had a little dish of bran flakes, almond milk, pumpkin and raisins. Pretty good combo!

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For lunch I had a spinach salad topped with red quinoa, cannellini beans, cucumber, avocado, BBQ sauce and tahini. Glorious. And a whole wheat english muffin with raspberry preserves as well!

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That afternoon I ate some Baked Woven Wheats from Whole Foods. I talked about my dislike of highly salty crackers in a post the other day…and in that post I had tried essentially the same cracker as these except they were the Trader Joe’s Brand. The verdict on the Whole Foods version, still too salty to fully enjoy eating them on their own (for my taste at least). Probably good dipped in hummus or something though!

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Later that evening I went out for smoothies with a friend, and although mine ended up being more of a juice than a smoothie it was still delicious! I ordered the Mint Cacao Chip smoothie which was made of coconut water, coconut milk, raw cacao nibs, coconut sugar, fresh mint and ice. Minty fresh!

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That night when I returned home I made myself a grilled cheese sandwich with a few pickles on the side. Classic! The cheese I used was a tomato basil yogurt cheese. You couldn’t really taste the tomato basil, but it was still a yummy sandwich.

Make sure to stop on over to Jenn’s page for the rest of the WIAW links!

TGIW,

Sydney

Tempeh Coconut Curry with Brown Rice

Here’s a simple and delicious meal to make this weekend!

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A creamy coconut curry with nutty tempeh. Delicious!

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Fresh from the skillet this dish is divine, and the leftovers are just as good! The flavors absorb and intensify overnight, which makes for great leftovers all weekend long!

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Tempeh Coconut Curry with Brown Rice

Serves 3-4

Recipe adapted from Iowa Girl Eats

1 tbsp olive oil

8 oz. of fresh or frozen broccoli florets (about 2 cups)

1/2 a yellow onion, chopped

1 block of tempeh

1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated

1 and 1/2 tbsp curry powder

A dash of cayenne pepper

A dash of sea salt

1 can coconut milk

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

3/4 cup brown rice, cooked

Heat olive oil in large saucepan. Add in broccoli, onion and tempeh and cook for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add in ginger, curry powder, cayenne pepper and sea salt, stir and continue cooking another 3-5 minutes.

Next, add in the coconut milk. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until sauce thickens and most of the liquid is absorbed. This may take about 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Once most of the liquid is absorbed turn off heat and stir in the cilantro. Serve over brown rice and enjoy!

Happy Friday,

Sydney

What I Ate Wednesday #61

Morning! Hope you’re all ready for another round of What I Ate Wednesday! This week I’m sharing all my eats from this past Sunday, it was a delicious day.

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I started off my morning doing some reading for my Health Policy and Management class. And ate a whole wheat english muffin with peanut butter and a banana.

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After breakfast I went to Whole Foods to stock up for the week. I hadn’t been to Whole Foods since this past summer, so it was a lot of fun to wander around the store for about an hour or so and find some different goodies. I know some people aren’t fans of grocery shopping, but I love it! My mid-morning snack was a freshly baked brownie with walnuts I picked up while shopping, so good!

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Then for lunch I had a big salad. Bed of arugula topped with quinoa, mixed veggies, cilantro, BBQ sauce and tahini. Delish.

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Also had an apple on the side!

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Later that afternoon I had a handful of pretzels.

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And for dinner that night I ate a curried pumpkin veggie burger with cucumbers and mango. Another scrumptious meal!

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For dessert I had a freshly baked slice of banana bread.  It was glorious! Super banana-y and dense and moist. I’ll share the recipe soon!

Hope you all have a fabulous Wednesday. Don’t forget to stop on over and see Jenn’s page!

TGIW,

Sydney

Polenta, BBQ Beans, Asparagus and Avocado Salad

Another delicious and nutritious salad combination!

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Polenta. BBQ Beans. Asparagus. Avocado…Pure Bliss!

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Fresh tomatoes. Fresh cilantro. And a dollop of hummus. Yum!

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All atop a bed of glorious arugula, this is a winner!

Polenta, BBQ Beans, Asparagus and Avocado Salad 

Serves 1

Arugula

4.5 oz of baked polenta*

Asparagus (as many stalks as you’d like. I used frozen asparagus, and de-thawed it first)

1/2 cup of cherry tomatoes

1/2 an avocado

1/2 cup of chickpeas

2 tbsp of BBQ sauce

2 tbsp of hummus

Fresh cilantro

*(4.5 oz is about a fourth of an 18 oz package, I used the Trader Joe’s brand. And I also baked the polenta ahead of time according to package directions).

To make this salad, start by coating the chickpeas in the BBQ sauce in a small bowl. Once the BBQ beans are ready, simply compile all ingredients of the salad onto a big plate or into a bowl. Simple and scrumptious! Enjoy!

Salads are wonderful,

Sydney

 

Homemade Raspberry Dijon Vinaigrette

Today I’m sharing a recipe for homemade salad dressing. It’s so easy to make you own, and since you control all the ingredients it’s much healthier than most store bought dressings. I can’t wait to play around with different varieties of flavors. The options are endless!

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This dressing is simple to make, you only need one bowl and a fork to whisk the ingredients together. It’s delicious, with a sweet and tangy fruity flavor.

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And it’s nutritious, only four ingredients without a long list of things you don’t recognize the name of and know how to pronounce.

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Homemade Raspberry Dijon Vinaigrette

Serves 1 (easily multiplied)

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

1/2 tbsp dijon mustard

1 tbsp organic raspberry preserves

Whisk. Pour. Enjoy.

Happy Eating,

Sydney