Monthly Archives: March 2008

Food Review: Good Ole H2O

Water is my favorite thing to drink all day! I don’t drink Cokes (that’s what us Southern folks call Soda or Pop) much because of how syrupy and carbonated they are. Water is so fresh and thirst-quenching. I used to be picky about what water I drank, Dasani, Aquafina, Deer Park, Walmart brand, etc. Now, I will drink it from the tap as long as it is cold and doesn’t have a bad mineral tap. Don’t get me wrong, Dasani is still pretty refreshing, but this is how I see it: Water is water!

When I go out to eat anywhere, I always order water. A little squeeze of a lemon wedge (no sugar added) makes it have a little different, refreshing taste, too. Water is usually cheaper at restaurants, and it’s always a healthier choice! We keep bottles of water in the fridge at work, I take them with me when I go to workout, I drink it at home with my meals if I’m not having milk, I order water with my coffee when I’m eating breakfast out somewhere. The possibilities are endless with water!

Make sure you get your recommended 8 glasses of water today!!

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Thank You!

I want to say THANK YOU! to the stranger that left a little treat on my doorstep last night! I have no idea who it was! I got a little note that said, “To Kim in the Kitchen,” so I know you read my blog! 🙂 Thanks for reading it, too! That little gift definitely made me smile (and seemed to take my mind off yesterday’s headache as well).

I’m also very curious about your identity. If you are willing, please let me know. I will post later what was left on my door step and the instructions left with it!! Stay tuned!!

Nutella Pie

Hi, everyone. My name is Sarah, and like Kim, I love being in the kitchen. Kim is one of my best friends and maid of honor, a marvelous cook, and she’s been generous enough to allow me to be a contributor to her super fun blog! This is my first entry, and I actually made this for Kim and some of my friends who helped put together invitations for my wedding a couple of weekends ago. I think it was a hit, and I certain I will be making it again!

This super easy and yummy pie recipe was a result of my recent Nutella obsession. For those of you who don’t know what Nutella is, it’s a chocolate hazelnut spread that’s the consistency of peanut butter and it’s the best thing ever. Seriously. Once I tried it, I never looked back. Nutella on bread, crackers, with strawberries, right out of the jar…. Which led me to adapt this recipe originally for peanut butter pie for Nutella. I will be continuing on this journey to create even more Nutella wonders…. I can only imagine the brownies, cookies, cakes that will spring forth from my Nutella craze!

Sarah’s Simple Nutella Pie

Ingredients:
8 ounces Cream Cheese, softened and at room temperature
1 cup Powdered Sugar
1/2 cup + 2 heaping tablespoons Nutella
16 ounces Cool Whip
1 pre-made graham cracker pie crust (or you can use 12 mini graham cracker pie crusts for individual pies, like I did)
Toppings of your choice

Directions:
In a large bowl, mix the cream cheese, powdered sugar, Nutella, and Cool Whip until well blended. (The orginal recipe said to use just 1/2 cup peanut butter, but I added 1/2 cup plus two heaping tablespoons Nutella for a more intense flavor. You may want to start with a 1/2 cup and adjust to taste). Pour into the pre-made pie crust. Next, top the pies however you’d like. I topped mine with a drizzle of melted Nutella (just nuke a couple tablespoons in the microwave in 10 second increments until its melted) and some more whipped cream. You could also try topping with chocolate syrup, chopped hazelnuts, the sky’s the limit! Refrigerate for at least one hour and enjoy.
The pie filling also makes a delicious dip for fruit, graham cracker sticks, etc. Yum!

Thanks for reading!

Sarah
http://frugalandfabulous.wordpress.com

New Contributor: Sarah Renegar

One of my favorite things in the world is cooking. I love to cook for people and cook with friends. And even cook for people with friends! Sarah is a long time friend I met my sophomore (her freshman) year of college, but we started hanging out the next summer (2004). I would like to say that her love of food and my love of food is what brought us close! 🙂

Summer of 2005, we decided that we wanted to start our own cookie business. We researched a few cookie recipes and experimented with what we came up with. A couple of them were really big hits with our friends, but one certain recipe left its mark… on my cookie sheets. I have recently swapped over to Pampered Chef Stoneware, but I still have those scarred up cookie sheets. HA! I think of them as a reminder of that summer we spent baking cookies in my small apartment kitchen. What fun!!

We’ve cooked together and for each other for so many different things over the past few years of our friendship. She recommended me to a mutual friend about catering her wedding last November. That was an amazing opportunity! This summer, Sarah is getting married and I have the privilege of being her Maid of Honor. I’m planning a shower for her with one of the other bridesmaids, so I will get to cook for her once again!

Sarah and I have finally graduated college. We have now taken a-liking to write about food and being frugal. She is a contributor to this site and will hopefully publish many wonderful recipes. Enjoy her writings!

Another Broken Egg Cafe

On Monday, I met a dear friend at Another Broken Egg Café in Jones Valley. It’s a fairly new restaurant to our area, and that was my second time there. They open at 7am and close 2pm/3pm, depending on the day. The host on this particular day said that he did not work there normally. I believe he might have been the owner just helping out before he went to his “normal” job. He sat me by the window where I could see the landscape of beautiful Jones Valley! It did take him quite some time to seat me, but that was okay. They had just opened and I was the first one there.

The waitress came promptly and filled up a glass of water that was already at my seat. I like when restaurants do that because I already know I want water to drink at every restaurant. I did, however, order their “Golden Cup” of coffee! It was really good, but there wasn’t really anything special about it this time. On my first visit there, the coffee was very fresh and bold, but this time it just tasted like something I could get at McDonald’s. My only complaint about the service was that my waitress did not keep my cup full and she did not check on us as often as I would have liked. My coffee cup was completely empty at one point and I had to ASK for more. That happened to me during my first trip there, also. The “Golden” coffee is a little on the expensive side, especially if they’re not going to keep it refilled.

The restaurant was pleasantly decorated and adequately set up. The atmosphere was very comfortable and non-threatening. They have a bar, but it looked like they only served specialty drinks, mainly liquors that go well with coffee. Their menu is full of so many breakfast choices! Mostly eggs or omelets. I don’t like scrambled eggs or omelets, but I do like my eggs fried. But I decided to go with something that didn’t have eggs, but the Potato Sensation caught my eye with my choice of 3 add-ins for $7.99 and each additional add-in is $.99. It came with onions, bell peppers, mushrooms, and sausage mixed in with the potatoes and smothered in Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses! Oh, it was really good! My friend tried their Blackberry Grits with their very own “blackberry creation” added into Southern-style grits. The creation just looked like whole blackberries that had been cooked with some sugar or syrup. I tried their grits but I wasn’t impressed. Maybe if it was made how I eat my grits, then adding the “creation” to it. Overall, the meals are all decently priced, but I could get it cheaper elsewhere. I don’t like to pay too much money out for my breakfast, and the average breakfast was about $9.

Overall, I would give this restaurant 3.5/5 stars because of the time they open (should be earlier than 7 since they close right after lunch) and because my coffee was not refilled in a timely fashion. You should try this restaurant out for yourself and let me know your thoughts! 🙂

New Topic! Restaurant Reviews!!

So, I’ve decided to review local restaurants in my area for when I can’t make it to the kitchen or just want to meet some friends out for a change or go on a special date! Believe me, my passion will always stay in the Kitchen, but I do like to venture out! Probably starting tomorrow, I will have my first ever restaurant review! I will give them a certain number of stars, always out of a maximum of 5 stars.

If you have a restaurant recommendation, do tell! I love going to local shops rather than chains. I’m a “support your locals” kinda gal!

Chicken Pesto

Two Fridays ago, I made this simple meal for my boyfriend and his parents since they were in the process of moving. I had to bring my own pots, pans, and utensils. But I forgot to bring a knife, oil, and butter.

10 oz. Basil Pesto in the tub (got mine at Target, 2 7oz. tubs)
1 12oz. box Farfalle pasta
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2-3 T. canola/vegetable/olive oil (not a huge deal which)
1 bag mozzarella/parmasaen cheese

Cook pasta as directed on the box. In a medium size skillet, heat oil; add the chicken breasts. Cook on medium heat for 5 minutes each side, until golden and fully cooked in the middle. Cut up the chicken into 1 inch cubes (I had to cut them in the pan I was using because I forgot to bring my cutting board. Luckily, I was using a cast iron skillet!). Drain the pasta, add the chicken and pesto and about 1/2 cup of the cheese. Top with cheese to serve. Bread and a side salad go great with this!