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Archive for July, 2010

Roommates Old and New

Oh my goodness, I think I might die of excitement today!

But before we get to that, let’s talk about last night. As mentioned, it was my roommate Allison’s birthday and the plan was to go out for Trivia Night. I came straight home after work and made a quick dinner before setting out.

A salad of romaine, tomato, yellow pepper, smoked salmon and mozzarella dressed with hummus and hot sauce. And a side of exotic vegetable Terra Chips. And then we had to rush off for the start of Trivia.

But sadly, when we arrived at the bar there was a sign to say a water main had broken and it was closed for the night!! So all of a sudden we had to come up with a Plan B. First, we went to Adam’s Mill for a pitcher of beer. Although it was a shame Trivia Night didn’t work out, it was actually a beautiful cool evening and it was so nice to be able to sit outside and enjoy the summer weather. Too bad the service was terrible. We decided to move on!

For Part II of our evening, Lauriol Plaza.

How have I never been there before?? It is lovely. A wonderful rooftop deck and big pitchers of margaritas and sangria. Here’s our group:

Fun night with lots of fun people. Disappointing that Trivia didn’t work out but I think we made the most of it!

I had to call it a night a bit early though, as I had to be up early this morning for my work-out. Although my plan was to head to the gym, when I woke up this morning I was NOT feeling it! I upped my weight at Body Pump on Sunday and Tuesday and I think it’s caught up with me. Instead I went for a nice long walk to stretch my legs out. Then I came home and made oatmeal.

1/3 cup each of oats/vanilla soy milk/water with a banana, vanilla, cinnamon and flax, topped with a tbsp. each of coconut/chocolate chips/dried cherries and a honey peanut butter spoon. Deeelish.

And now for my excitement! Did you know I will be going to CANADA tomorrow? It’s true! I’ll be there Thursday to Tuesday to visit my old college roommates who are some of my very favorite people in the WORLD. Since I moved to DC we see each other wayyyy too infrequently so I couldn’t be more pumped to get there. We’ll be staying up north in my friend’s boyfriend’s family cottage for the weekend where we’ll be able to do all sorts of fun outdoor activities together.

We also have BIG plans to cook lots of delicious food – we’ve even split up into teams for each meal – and I can’t wait to share it all with you. However, I have noooo idea what (if any) Internet access there is out there so you’ll have to stick with me the next few days. I apologize in advance if I go missing! I promise to make it up to you with a plethora of pretty foodie pics upon my return :).

GAHHHHH, excitement. I’ll see you all soon :).

Beth

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So-So Sandwiches

For a Monday/Tuesday, I’d say the last 24 hours have been quite fun!

Last night Joelle and I met for a quick dinner before going to see Inception. We tried to go this weekend but it was all sold out. So we thought we’d have better luck on a Monday. We met at Vapianos beforehand, which is a restaurant built on what I think is a really cool concept. You get a swipe card when you walk in, then order your food (salad/pizza/panini/pasta) from one area, order your drinks from the bar area and just tap your card as you go. Then when you leave, you just hand your card over and cash out. Great idea right!? Unfortunately the food has yet to impress me :(.

This is a chicken pesto panini and side salad. Sounded/looked pretty good but the panini was pretty flavorless and the salad was way overdressed. I ate half and trashed the rest. Sad, Vapianos.

Inception was one intense (but good) movie! I had to have Joelle explain a lot of it to me afterwards and we’re both still confused on some parts. I think I will need to see it once or twice more to wrap my little brain around the whole thing :). It was LONG too! I didn’t get to bed until well after midnight and had to be up at 6:30 for Body Pump. Half Marathon training, you are killing me.

Post work-out brekkie:

Vanilla Chobani, butternut squash, granola and a pb spoon. Oh by the way, Justin’s Honey Peanut Butter?? AMAZING! I know it is a very silly thing to spend $10 on peanut butter but it is heaven on a spoon, I’m telling you.

And this afternoon I met my culinary school friend Rebecca for lunch. Pret a Manger opened up near my office very recently and I’ve been so excited to give it a try! If you’ve ever been to London you know these little sandwich shops are like every 20 feet, so it is like a little taste of England to me :).

All the sandwiches are made fresh each day and then packed to grab and go. Such ease. I got a chicken salad with cranberries on wheat.

Sadly, I can’t say it was anything special. 2 so-so sandwiches in the past 24 hours! How tragic.

So tonight promises to be another fun one, for it is my roommate Allison’s birthday. Happy Birthday Allison!  We’re off to Trivia night and I’m hoping to prove to be a total genius :).

See you tomorrow friends!

Beth

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New Job Celebration

Hello and Happy Monday!

We had a massive storm yesterday evening which totally knocked out the weekend’s humidity. So yay! I ran four miles this morning and for once, the weather felt quite nice. Is it sad or what when 90 degrees is a “cool” day!?

But as promised, this post will be focused on yesterday: Louisa’s new job celebration at Potenza!

Always, when I go to Potenza I order the gnocchi. It’s melt-in-your mouth pillowy pasta-amazing and therefore it’s a bit hard to stray! Buuut I made gnocchi on Saturday night and have leftovers…so I decided 3 days of gnocchi might be a bit of overkill :).

While we browsed the menu, I had a glass of red wine and a piece of fresh baked bread with roasted garlic olive oil.

Gorgeous.

For my non-gnocchi meal, I decided to do an appetizer and a salad. My friend has been highly recommending the Arancini alla Salsiccia di Cinghiale (Fried risotto balls stuffed with wild boar sausage and provolone) for months now. It was time I gave them a try!

These were heavenly. Crispy and hot on the outside with a warm, soft and very flavorful interior. I don’t know if I’ve ever had wild boar before. He was delicious :).

As for my salad, I opted for the Romana alla Piastra – Charred romaine, parmesan aioli, olive crouton sticks and anchovy gremolatta.

We made grilled romaine salads in culinary school and I could not believe how delicious the romaine becomes once it has been cooked! As soon as I saw this on the menu my mind was made up :). At Potenza, they dress the salad before cooking which allowed the dressing’s flavor to really soak in and soften the leaves. Very good.

And dessert! Of course, there was dessert.

How perfect was it: an order of canolis comes with three and there were three of us! Canolis are probably my favorite dessert ever and Potenza’s version are so crispy fresh and wonderful.

So I would say the celebration dinner was a success! Louisa seemed to really enjoy it and of course, you know her big sister always does :).

Beth

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Blogworthy Events

Seeeeriously though…where did today go!?

I have so much to share, so I think it’s best to split my day up:  half today and half tomorrow. Because really, what blogworthy events happen on a Monday anyway? 🙂

I began my morning nice and early as I wanted to head to the Farmers Market for some ingredients before 10AM Body Pump. It was already sweltering by the time I got out there so I’m glad I went early! Market-> BP Class-> Food Prep.

I made a peach and tomato salad for a Bridal Shower this afternoon for one of my co-workers. I don’t know if you’ve noticed but I am obsessed with these little beauties:

Peaches and tomatoes tossed with EVOO, balsamic, red onion s&p. Simple and oh so delish.

Speaking of, there was a LOT of good eats at the shower. Please enjoy a photo tour.

Cream cheese and pepper jelly.

Homemade hummus and pita.

Cheese and crackers.

Buffalo chicken dip.

Melon, prosciutto and goat cheese tea sandwiches.

Cucumber and strawberry tea sandwiches.

So much yumminess! What a delicious day. And what made it even more delicious were my evening plans with Louisa, who is celebrating a big promotion! Of course a special occasion like that deserved a special meal, which we enjoyed at my very favorite place: Potenza.

And just like that my day and weekend are over! So I shall share the details tomorrow. See you then bloggies.

Beth

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Flavor Combinations

Hello!

Fun bloggy meet-up last night. Joelle and I met Coco for the first time, who recently moved to the area from MD. We met at Thai Coast, which I’ve been to with Joelle once before. Last time I ordered the cashew nut tofu, which was so good I just had to order it again!

Just as good the second time.

It was great meeting Coco who is actually running her first 10K soon. So we had lots to talk about, between running, blogging and the insane cost of city living :). We did get a picture together but it came out all grainy on my camera for some reason! How annoying. Hopefully Coco’s version will be better.

Body Combat is on my agenda this morning, so I’ve just had some breakfast while I wait for class time to arrive.

Butternut squash, chocolate Oikos and granola with a peanut butter spoon. Chocolate was the only yogurt I had and I wasn’t so sure about how it would work with the squash but it was actually very yummy! Whatever works, right?

So I’m keeping this short as I’ve got a class to attend. I shall see you tomorrow with some more delish weekend eats!

Question: What weird flavor combinations do you love??

Beth

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Butternut Squash Oatmeal

Happy Friday!

One thing I was not expecting is how hungry/thirsty/tired running 6 miles was going to make me. What a difference a few miles will make…especially in this heat! I was about to die of starvation by dinnertime last night and had a major headache, which I assume was out of tiredness or dehydration.

When I got home I needed to EAT! I put this all together in about 10 minutes flat :).

In the bowl is a tomato, basil, mozzarella and cucumber salad just tossed in a little olive oil, balsamic, salt and pepper. On the plate is my beloved polenta with butter and honey and a piece of feta and spinach stuffed sole which I admit, was purchased from Whole Foods. But see! It’s not hard to make a delicious, nutritious meal in a short time. Especially with a little help ;).

After supper, lots of water and a solid night of sleep I felt much better when I woke up this AM.  It’s my rest day for the week so I got to sleep in a whole hour and a half more, which was glorious. Oh, and make oatmeal!

Butternut squash oatmeal to be exact. I didn’t have any bananas but did have a can of squash that I’d been saving for such an occassion. The mix was:

  • 1/3 cup each oats/vanilla soy milk/water
  • 1/2 cup of butternut squash
  • cinnamon
  • vanilla
  • tbsp. of flax
  • 2 tbsp. of granola
  • tbsp. of dried cherries
  • tbsp. maple syrup
  • pb spoon

I looooved the addition of squash! It made my oats so creamy. I will say though, the maple syrup was quite necessary for a nice flavor as squash is not as sweet as a ripe banana.

Question: How do you rest and refuel after long runs? I know 6 miles is nothing compared to what is coming up…so I better learn quick!

Fun weekend plans galore so I’ll be sure to keep you posted :).  

Beth

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Oh YUM! Last night’s dinner was amazing.

I suppose I should explain what is happening here, in case anyone is getting confused. I currently live in DC with 3 other girls. And I adore them! However, one of my roommates Allison got a new job in NYC and will be moving there as our lease expires. I will also be moving out to Maryland to live with my little sis Louisa, who recently moved to the area and my dear friend Anna who I’m sure you’ve seen on this blog ohhh about a million times. So although I am SAD to be leaving the situation I’m in now, I am EXCITED for the future. Glad we have that sorted :).

In the meantime, we are savoring all the roomie QT we can get. Including last night’s dinner, to celebrate Allison’s new job!

We dined at Firefly. I’ve been there once before but I must say, this time I was much more impressed than last! Many thanks to Kenzie who gave me all sorts of helpful details, including BYOB wine for a $3 corking fee and half-priced drinks for Wednesday ladies night. Don’t even worry, we took advantage of both :).

First, vino!

 

We picked up a bottle of Norton from Horton Vineyards in Virginia. I bought this for my Dad for Father’s Day this year as I thought it would be fun for him to try some local wine from my home. And we were really impressed! I have been wanting to share a bottle with my wine-loving roomies since, so last night was the perfect occasion. Best part is, the cheapest bottle of wine on the menu was around $36! The savings!

For my meal, I ordered two of the small plates from the Urban Picnic menu.

“tuna & crackers” tuna tartare, tonnato sauce, sesame crackers, white anchovy

 salt roasted baby beets cherry glen goat cheese, sicilian pistachio, fig vinegar, micro arugula

Small plates are fun because then you can try a couple things without feeling stuffed. Both of the dishes were completely delightful: light, fresh and summery. Tuna is perhaps my very favorite thing to order when dining out, ever. Beautiful.

And then…dessert! I just KNEW I had to get dessert. Every single item on the sweets menu looked delish! After much debate, I selected this:

peanut butter ice cream sandwich flourless chocolate cake, banana’s foster sauce, crumbled peanut praline

Peanut butter, chocolate, banana. Of course, I’m sold. It was INSANE! So good. I almost licked my plate :).

Although I could not participate due to my planned 6 mile run this morning, my roommates also enjoyed 1/2 priced cocktails with dessert. The special is only at the bar but our server was just the sweetest and bent the rules after we asked politely begged :).  They were filled with super creative ingredients and looked so yummy! Definitely will have to come back another night and take advantage.

I must show you how he brought us our check!

Adorable, right??

And for our final picture of the evening…here we are!

Cute cute cute. Nicole, Beth P., Beth D. and Allison.

I ran six miles this morning! I really did! Yay! But let’s be honest, this post is all about last night’s dinner :).

Beth

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