thursday things – an anniversary, a road trip, and other stuff

eggI have this issue lately where whenever I try to crack an egg on the counter, instead of cracking it just explodes out of it its shell. I mean, I know I’ve been working out a lot lately but I’m pretty sure I’m not the Hulk so… it’s super confusing.

Mr. Eats and I just celebrated our anniversary last week and celebrated with an amazing dinner at BLT Steak. If you have one in your town, you definitely have to check it out. The popovers are to DIE for, the caesar salad is amazing, and the peanut butter mousse dessert, served with banana ice cream and chocoalte ganache is out of this world.

BLT Steak Collage 1 BLT Steak Collage 3

In other news we also took a road trip a couple weeks ago to Mesa Verde National Park in Cortez, Colorado. Mesa Verde was occupied for more than 700 years, from 550 A.D. to 1300 A.D. and is home to some of the most fantastic cliff dwellings you will ever see. We spent all day exploring the park and its various cliff dwellings and still didn’t see even half of what they have to offer.

mesa verde

It wasn’t all hiking and hard work, though. Their restaurant “The Metate Room” is pretty solid, too.

mesa verde dish


I ate a whole bag of this trail mix in one sitting, which is weird because the back claims that it has “6 servings” but my bag clearly only had one. I think I should probably write them a letter to let them know that my bag was under-filled.

trail mix

Starbucks has released a new toasted graham latte that I need to get my hands on ASAP.

Lays has released Canada’s #1 potato chip in the US – the flavor is called “All Dressed” and will only be available until December so hurry up and grab your bags now.

Kenji is singing the praises of this $65 knife, which is still in Kickstarter form, so you definitely need to back it. Because, Kenji.

Bon Appetit posted this intriguing article about what goes into the food we eat.

And last but not least, this guy.


thursday things

ig sunset

It’s been a while since my lazy good for nothing butt has posted a Thursday Things but I definitely need to get back into it so, alas, here I am! Whether it’s the 108 degree weather, high humidity, or extra hours I’ve been pulling at work it has just been extra hard to get any of this ‘extra curricular’ type stuff done.

Actually I’ve baked a few things for you, but sitting down and writing about them… that part is a bit harder.

I have a macaron recipe coming up for you, I even did research and took one of those fancy cooking classes to level up my skills. We all took turns passing around the baking sheet and piping the macaron batter onto it. Do you see that? I went into the world and even spent time with STRANGERS just for you. I violated my very strict “Stranger Danger” rule just for you guys. Don’t you feel special? You should.

20150628-IMG_2743In other news my Exploding Kittens game arrived. If you’re not familiar with the game, you may be familiar with its creator – Matthew Inman – of the infamous comic blog The Oatmeal. He’s like my hero.

Exploding Kittens

Minions have been attacking Ireland.

Oreo dropped their newest cookie invention – Oreo Thins. Shannon and I tried them for you – you can read all about them here!

oreo thins

And Sir Ian McKellen taught the world how to make scrambled eggs.

thursday things – DNA Tests, Ikea candy, and more


Summer is in full swing here and it’s so hot that our local news has completely given up on even attempting to forecast the high temps. Today’s high temp is “- -” … maybe tomorrow they can just be honest and put some question marks or an interrobang. Or just pull a Siri and put a big fat “HOT” up there instead of numbers at all…

We live in a world where fast food conglomerates have resorted to DNA testing to prove that they aren’t serving rodents.

And where people are tackling real world problems, like my inability to mix a cocktail. Now thanks to this Kickstarter, I won’t have to!

The very same Amy’s Kitchen that has been providing veggie-friendly freezer meals is now opening their very first vegetarian fast food restaurant!

Ikea is adding “candy conglomerate” to its list of descriptors.

If you’re planning to cool off this summer with homemade ice cream, here are some great tips for making it great.

Martha Stewart has sold off her empire.

NY Times tells us how to really eat on the cheap while traveling.

Now you can get the most of your meals by pairing foods to optimize your nutrition absorption.

This guy shows how much it sucks to be a woman, or to eat like one at least.

Get a kick out of watching Elmo and Jimmy Fallon show us how to make waffled grilled cheese and “Sloppy Oscars.”

thursday things – i got a new fitbit and some other stuff


Last week I told you all about our trip to San Francisco, from which I think my favorite souvenir was this tiny treeling that Mr. Eats picked up. We finally got it planted over the weekend – that being said, I have a notoriously black thumb so it may not survive for another week.

But if it does… HOW COOL WOULD THAT BE? Our very own baby giant sequoia tree!

I got a fancy new fiitbit! Look how excited it is when I hit my 10,000 steps!

It just makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

I’m going to need all those steps, too, because I just found out that my beloved Shake Shack will be opening a restaurant here in my very own hometown! I’M SO EXCITED I COULD DIE.

On top of that, Starbucks released 6 brand new frappuccinos for us all to try.

And Dairy Queen released a Jurassic World blizzard with chocolate chip cookie dough, peanut butter cookies, peanut butter, and chocolate chunks… so, guess I should get stepping then…

Shannon kicked up the Just One Question Project again – which is a great read for anyone who has a blog or is thinking of starting one. She’s also recently redesigned her site and IT’S FREAKING GORGEOUS so you should probably stop by and take a look-see if you haven’t seen it yet.

These gummy bear reviews on Amazon will likely make your day.

HuffPo shared an infographic of how long you can freeze all the things.

Pinch of Yum shared her favorite uses for her food processor (and why you should probably get one).

I Am a Food Blog shares her secrets to a great basic chocolate chip cookie.

Serious Eats has cracked the code for perfect scrambled eggs, no matter how you like them.

The Kitchn finally settled the argument between Mr. Eats and I about whether or not you should rinse your pasta when its done cooking.

And Taco Bell is going au naturale.

And… goats in pajamas! Because, goats!

thursday things – we went to san francisco!

san fran bridge

I totally typed up a post for Thursday Things last week, then I got onto a plane and flew to California and woke up Thursday morning and instead of hitting “Publish” I got into a car and drove from San Francisco to Napa and forgot all about my Thursday Things post. So sorry, guys. Really.

But now I have all new things to tell you about because, in case you weren’t paying attention up there, I WENT TO SAN FRANCISCO! For the first time ever. With Mr. Eats and my bestie.

We did a lot of things, but mostly we ate. We ate so much that I was in pain about 99% of the time. We ate so much that I didn’t even have a chance to think about getting hungry in between meals. We ate SO MUCH that we actually had to give away leftovers from our $50 chicken to a (presumably) homeless guy on the street. Because we could not eat it and had too many more things to eat.

We ate a lot.

10 things I learned in San Francisco:

1. Sharing is caring. Just kidding, I already knew that, but it really lets you try more things. Three of us meant we could each order an item and all of us could try each other’s food. Of course, some applications were better than others, but all in all it worked out.

2. Eating early (even at super hyped up restaurants) will always get you a table. Just eat with the old people, it’s not so bad, really. You don’t really get the ambiance of dining with a crowd, but you don’t get the wait either. *Alternative crowd-avoidance tip* (Almost) everywhere delivers, and if they don’t deliver they offer take-out.

3. A rental car can be worth it – everything you read about SF will tell you not to rent a car. Honestly, I don’t know what we would have done without our rental, particularly because we spent a day up in Napa, and renting the car for 1 or 2 days costs almost the same as renting it for our entire trip so we just went for it and I don’t regret it. *Pro Tip* DO NOT get your rental from the airport – find a place NEAR the airport and save yourself a couple hundred on your rental.

4. If you do have a car, remember that whole part in driver’s ed about parking on hills? Remember how you are supposed to turn your wheels in case your brakes fail? Well, apparently they ticket for that in SF. So, now you’ve been warned.

5. If you travel to SF, go to Yountville. You’ve already traveled that far so for the love of God GO TO YOUNTVILLE AND EAT AT ONE (or all) OF THOMAS KELLER’S RESTAURANTS. Maybe you can’t afford to drop hundreds of dollars at The French Laundry, but you can dine prix fixe for less than $60 a person at Ad Hoc or get a $16 lunch from Addendum.

muir woods 2

6. Now that you’ve rented a car and driven to Yountville, take a half day to take a trip to Muir Woods. I’d never heard of this place, but since Mr. Eats had never seen a redwood tree in his life he really wanted to check it out, so we did. As an added bonus, on the drive back I learned that “Otter Crossing” signs are a thing and that basically made my life complete.

7. Go to China Town. It’s enormous and chaotic and impossible to find parking (so take an uber) but make sure you GO TO CHINA TOWN. It’s ridiculous. They sell fresh rainier cherries for less than $2.00 a pound, there’s a dim sum shop and asian bakery on every corner (and in between every corner), the streets are filled with people, and even their Walgreens sells fish sauce.

8. Don’t go in the summer (well, not in this time of year at least). It’s cold and foggy and windy and, hey, did I mention the fog? Apparently it’s something about the ocean and the valley and high and low pressure, but just be prepared for coldness and fog. So much fog. Luckily we had a few minutes with sunshine that we were able to (sort of) catch a glimpse of the Golden Gate bridge. Unfortunately, we couldn’t actually get out of the car to take the picture because the ten parking spots were full and the street was jammed with everyone else who was waiting to snap the perfect pic of the bridge. Here is what it looked like most of the time we were there…

Collage 1

9. Check out the farmer’s market at the Ferry Building downtown. All of the produce I consumed while in San Francisco was beyond amazing, and the farmer’s market was no exception to this.

10. I want to live inside the Ferry Building. Just saying. It has Blue Bottle Coffee, Miette, Humphrey Slocomb, Dandelion Chocolate, and a bajillion more places.

Best things I ate in San Francisco:

1. Everything at Ad Hoc – The menu is different every day (hence the name – “Ad Hoc”) and ours included a chef’s salad, chicken wings, pork chops with polenta and wilted spinach, cheese course, and a chocolate cupcake with peanut butter frosting.

ad hoc 1 col

ad hoc col 2

2. The fried chicken at Addendum – For $16 you get an entree (chicken, pulled pork sandwich, or ribs) and two sides. Get the chicken. Drinks are extra (their strawberry lemonade is delicious).

tk fried chicken

3. The brisket and broccoli at Mission Chinese (excuse the photo – this place is not only poorly lit but it is poorly-lit with red lights). Also recommended: sour chili chicken and spicy beef chow mein.

*Pro Tip* The restaurant is identified by a tiny 8 by 10 piece of paper taped to the window that says “Mission Chinese” – The actual sign says “Lung Shan Restaurant”

mission chinese

4. Totopopos at Nopalito – Everything tortilla chips have ever dreamed of being. They are a bit spicy so grab a horchata or cocktail to cool down your mouth.


5. The Cruffin at Mr. Holmes Bakehouse – This is a very elusive pastry that requires waiting in line not at the bakery’s opening time but about 45 minutes before the cruffins are served. In our case, Sarah was super into the cruffin and took on this task all on her own. After suffering through the line all by herself she was such a kind and generous person that she actually shared some of her cruffin with me (God bless her).

*Pro Tip* There are two lines – the cruffin line and the bakery line. If you go for the cruffin and want another pastry, they will make you go back to the end of the regular bakery line for your non-cruffin baked goods. This is a dick move, but they recommend you “go with a friend” so they can wait in the regular line while you wait in the cruffin line. Cruffins only have 1 flavor daily so you get what you get.

Also recommended – any of their donuts


6. The Dandelion Chocolate Chef’s Tasting – we were so full that we even split this three ways and were satisfied.

Also recommend: S’more, Praline Mousse, Nibbun

dandelion chocolate

7. Zuni Cafe’s roasted chicken “for 2” – Which can actually serve way more than 2… It’s like a whole freakin’ chicken guys.

*Pro Tip* The chicken takes an hour to make (after you order it) so grab a caesar salad and/or some fries to share while you wait.

zuni chicken

8. Bi Rite Creamery – Creme Brulee – Also recommend: TCHO Chocolate, Blue Bottle Coffee, Cookies & Cream, Brown Sugar with Ginger Caramel Swirl (but really, all are good)

*Pro Tip* Just east (like a couple yards) of the Bi Rite shop on 18th Street is a Bi Rite window that serves soft serve. They have two ice cream flavors, toppings, cones, and a specialty “sundae of the day” – you will want to check this out also.

bi rite creamery

 Honorable mentions:

  • Blue Bottle Coffee – several locations
  • Humphry Slocomb – Salted Caramel, Secret Breakfast, Cinnamon Brittle, Eton Mess (again, all are great)
  • Bouchon Bakery (Yountville) – Bouchon “Oh Oh”, Chocolate Eclair, TKO, any of their coffee drinks
  • Saint Frank – Coffee Flight
  • Jane Bakery – Chocolate Chip Toffee Cookie (also available at Saint Frank coffee)
  • Plow – French Toast (If the wait is super long, go ahead and skip it)
  • Boccalone Salumeria (Ferry Building) – cured meats and sandwiches – Prosciutto Cotto hot sandwich (*Note: We all regretted not trying the salami cold sandwich)