Friday, April 27, 2012

Week in Review Thanks to Instagram

It is official, I am obsessed with an app that makes my photos look like I just got off a 1970s rock band tour bus.  I love the haze and aura you can add to almost any pic...  Instagram may have been bought out by Facebook but if Mark Zuckerberg really wants to keep tabs on the many beers and sandwiches I eat throughout the week than go for it!  Don't say I didn't warn you FB man!

Here is a sampling of what hidden jems of photo glory you would get Marky Boy.....

numbers shmumbers....

HIKING!
Beer to sooth the pain of being a New England Sports Fan!

Coffee to keep me going....

Cleaning my room!

cooking cause it's what I love to do....

new set up for my homemade Kombucha Tea!

Finally figuring out how to use my "InStyler" after owning it for 2 years!

more numbers.....

Game 7 traffic jam from hell!!!!

Listening to Congressional Hearings for work!

Pizza & Beer on a Thursday!

Hanging with the ladies of Harpoon!  Thanks to these ladies (below)

The fabulous ladies of @MaGirlsPintOut! 
It was a great week that flew by WAY to fast.....  High points for the upcoming weekend include a 15 mile training walk, BACON & BEER FEST! Plus my niece's 1st communion on Sunday!  I am having serious issues accepting she is getting that big!  My baby girl niece should always stay small for this auntie!

What's in store for you this weekend?  Anything fun I should be checking out?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Rainy Day Sunday Dinner

Sunday was cool, rainy and basically a day that said to me: "Stay inside and clean your apartment before A&E Hoarders shows up on your doorstep with a street full of dumpsters"

I listened to the message and washed, sorted AND put away basically my entire wardrobe.  By mid day my meals of turkey sandwiches and snacks of guac/salsa was not cutting it.  I knew with an impending Game 6 about to air and my complete lack of motivation to go out to the grocery store I was going to have to make dinner from what I had on hand in my pantry & freezer.

Thankfully, for this foodie I consider peppers, onions & garlic "pantry items".  Other items you will find in my pantry 99% of the time is frozen chicken and canned tomatoes.

Roommate had been talking about Chicken Cacciatore so I took to the interwebs and got to cooking!

I know the following recipe is not 100% a true Cacciatore.  The chicken was boneless and I didn't use mushrooms.  I used what I had on hand and think this version is just as tasty!

This meal was SUPER easy!  Maybe 10 minutes of actual prep/cooking time followed by 2 hours of simmering.  It was the perfect meal to enjoy mid game.  Hot, satisfying and filling.  Paired with Farro this Sunday dinner was just what we needed on a rainy day.

season your flour, you will thank me later!

Coat your chicken (I used boneless skinless chicken thighs from Wegmans) with flour and seasoning.

Brown your chicken in a bit of olive oil until brown on both sides.  Don't worry about cooking all the way through, it will have plenty of time to cook in the sauce.


After removing your chicken add in one sliced yellow onion, and one each sliced yellow & red pepper and diced garlic (about 3 cloves).  I used the oil left in the pan from the chicken and added a small tab of butter for flavor.

Cook on medium until softened.  Deglaze the pan with a good splash of white wine and add in a large can (28oz) of diced tomatoes.  I also added in about 1Tbsp of tomato paste, basil, oregano and several large shakes of Old Bay.

Put your chicken back in the pan, cover and walk away... just walk away and finish hanging up your clothes!
While your goodness is simmering away crack open a beer of your choice and curse your local hockey team until they win in OT!


Your dish is ready in as little as 30 minutes (enough time for your chicken to cook through) but I let mine simmer for almost 2 hours.  I served it with a side of farro but you can eat it alone, with pasta, rice or even polenta.  The possibilities are endless!

This was really really good!  I admit too that I think I liked it better the next day for lunch.  There is something about Italian food that just tastes better on day two.

Tonight is game 7 of this hockey series!  If you are in Boston, you know I will be at my local watering hole consuming Guinness and swearing like a sailor and biting off what little left I have of my nails.

GO Bs!!!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Need a dinner recommendation?

In the world of smart phones and social media one can literally ask hundreds of people at once where you should go out to eat. You can now google a place before hand to see the menu, ask friends if they have been there or read countless reviews on various review websites.   I will admit, I have always been that girl who will take the recommendation of a friend, co-worker or twitter pal over blindly going out to eat.

Thanks to the blog, I have discovered a new site that I have utterly fallen in love with.  It is called Tasted Menu and manages to combine everything you love from the interwebs into one site!  Menu breakdowns, reviews from fellow patrons and pictures!  You can comment, add your own review or just peruse for hours and hours drooling over your next dining adventure (not that I have spent hours drooling over sushi and pizza pictures...)!

source


The site is still growing and I am excited to be an "Ambassador" of sorts trying to get the word out about Tasted Menu.  Some of my favorite Boston Bloggers and friends are also on here posting their reviews on everywhere from the North End to the South End.

If you have an iPhone you can download the app so you always know where to go or what to order!


I really can't say enough good things about this site!  The creators behind it are looking to create a community where you can share the good and the bad of dining out with everyone.  I highly suggest getting over to their site and spend sometime planning out your next dining adventure!

***I have been asked to help spread the word about Tasted Menu but I am not being compensated for my opinions.  As always, 100% of my opinions are my own***

Weekend Recap

The weather is rainy and I have quarterly reports to get through...

not snow...just lots of tree buds!
In my absence today enjoy a photo recap of the weekend!


PICCO!


5.6 mile hike through Blue Hills
 
Chicken & Tofu Lettuce Wraps at Yard House

Pretty Things Beer to wash down the reality of losing a 9-0 lead! Stupid Sox!

Maui Chicken - Yard House

Never enough coffee

Cleaning! I will not be the next star of HOARDERS!
 
Sunday Dinner Chicken Cacciatore (recipe to follow)

Homemade Kombucha - Continuous Brewing setup
Do anything fun this weekend?  Did you go to Boston Comic Con?  I secretly wished I had!!

Friday, April 20, 2012

A to Z Survey



I blatantly stole this survey from Teri's blog. I am a sucker for answering these and thought I would share with you all some more random facts about me!  Enjoy!

A is for age: 31

B is for breakfast today: Turkey sandwich with spinach, sprouts and green goddess dressing

C is for currently craving: Cheese (the answer is always cheese)

D is for dinner tonight: PICCO!

E is for favorite type of exercise: Hot Yoga

F is for an irrational fear: Having a Highway rest-stop giant American Flag break free and cover my windshield (god I wish I was kidding, and yes I really did just tell you all this....)

G is for gross food: Canned peas

H is for hometown: Worcester, MA

I is for something important: FAMILY

J is for current favorite jam: Raspberry

K is for kids: 0

L is for current location: Beverly

M is for the most recent way you spent money: Bought this

N is for something you need: A tan

O is for occupation: Shipping

P is for pet peeve: close talkers

Q is for a quote: "What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?" ~ Anonymous

R is for random fact about you: I sang at my aunt's wedding when I was 15 but would rather have my finger nails pulled than sing karaoke in front of a crowd.

S is for favorite healthy snack: apple with almond butter

T is for favorite treat: KO Pies!

U is for something that makes you unique: I have been here

V is for favorite vegetable: pepper

W is for today’s workout: walking to Supper Club

X is for X-rays you’ve had: teeth, arm

Y is for yesterday’s highlight:  6.65 mile city walk with Steph

Z is for your time zone: EST


Pick the letter that your first name starts with and give your answer for that letter!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Best Weekend in Boston!

From a very successful fundraiser, to exploring my city with a long time friend to spending the day supporting Boston athletes all while enjoying the sunshine it is clear to see why Marathon Monday/Patriots Day weekend is my favorite weekend in Boston!

I will get into more detail on the events of the past weekend (like raising $1500 for Breast Cancer to morning Baseball games) but for now, enjoy a photo montage of the weekend!













Thursday, April 12, 2012

Guest Post: Burger Meet Up - Back Bay Social Club


I always say that I write this blog because nobody at work wants to hear me gab about food all day.  That isn't entirely true.  My co-worker Kevin is pretty obsessed with food as well, especially burgers.  We talk about them all the time! So when he mentioned he was attending a Burger Meet Up I begged asked him to do a guest post.

Enjoy!

First of all thank you to Beth, The Sailing Foodie, for extending me the offer of doing a guest post on her buzzing Boston food blog, I am honored. Let me officially start this post by thanking the BostonBurger Blog and Google Places for getting this Burger tasting off the ground.

This was my first time at the Back Bay Social Club, and after hearing much praise from burger fans throughout the city, it came damn close to living up to my expectations. The night’s menu consisted of three sliders each with a side dish as well as a pairing of beer or wine depending on your preference

**Disclaimer: Being a non-drinker I will not attempt to the alcohol pairings.

The service was very good, my water glass was never empty and we had just enough attention without being smothered or left to fend for ourselves. Now onto the main event…. Keeping in mind that this review is based on sliders and not full size burgers.  



Our first burger was the classic “Social Burger” which consists of the standard house beef, which I believe is called K1 Prime, a blend of three different cuts of meat, topped with caramelized onions and Vermont cheddar sandwiched between a hearty homemade bun. This burger was cooked near perfect with a pinkish red center, plenty of juice and flavor. The high note of this burger however was the Vermont cheddar; it simply stood out and complimented all the other ingredients perfectly. The bun was a little over toasted for my liking but not enough to take away from the burger itself. This came with a side of the house French fries which I must say were not overly hot, but salty and very very tasty, some of the better fries I have found paired with a burger within city limits…



Burger number two consisted of the same house meat blend and the same bun, however this time topped with sautéed mushrooms and brie. This was a first for me seeing brie on a burger let alone tasting it on a burger. I must say that I was pleasantly surprised, although you won’t find me ordering brie on my next burger; I would not turn it down. Burger #2 came with a side of pickled vegetables, which were a letdown, when is the last time you were wondering, “Should I get fries, or pickled vegetables with my cheeseburger?” I myself have never had to ponder the question; burgers come with fries, that statement needs no further explanation or validation, they just do. Overall this was my least favorite of the three, however keep in mind that is a relative favorite because it was still a delicious burger that I would order again.



Burger Number Three was overall my favorite burger of the night. Like the previous two this burger consisted of the BBSC house meat blend and the same bun, however this was topped with a pungent blue cheese and bacon. The burger was cooked to medium and consistent all the way through, the bacon was firm but not overly crispy which in my opinion it should be at least a subtle crunch. The standout here once again was the cheese, it was a strong flavored yet not overpowering blue cheese, the brand or region of the world it was from I do not know and sadly forgot to ask.  The side for this course was bacon candy…yes I said bacon candy, not that I have to tell you what it was to convince you that it was delicious but I will anyway.



This was bacon candied in maple syrup and brown sugar wrapped around a brown and serve sausage, the only objection I have to this is that they were actually using the frozen brown and serve sausages, which in some ways I feel is cheating.  Frozen sausage or not this was easily one of the best bacon based items I have ever tasted and would go back just for these alone.

It was a fun night and I thoroughly enjoyed it, thank you to Google Places and the Boston burger blog for putting on a great show!!

-Kevin