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Showing posts from January, 2012

My Birthday Dinner @ TOP FLR

For my birthday dinner I wanted to keep it low-key and local. So I made a reservation for a small group of my friends at TOP FLR restaurant, a place I've heard raving reviews about. We got a large table in the main room and ordered some fancy cocktails to start. The rest of the evening was incredible. Everything was on point and we really enjoyed ourselves. Here's what I ordered, in the same sequence as the pictures below: Hay Ride ~Applejack Brandy, apple cider, spiced syrup, baked apple bitters  8 Local Lettuce Blend , Asian Pear, Fromage Blanc, Pistachio, Honey Lavender Dressing   8 Top Flr Mac N Cheese ~Sharp Cheddar, Smoked Gouda, Spicy Panko Crust   6 Strange Horse ~Hayman’s Old Tom Gin, Green Chartreuse, mint, lime, ginger beer  11 Pan Seared Sea Scallops , Butternut Squash Purée, Cider Gastrique, Toasted Pecans  18 And a surprise cheesecake! Love my ATL friends. Great times with amazing people! Highly recommend this place -- trust me, the

Bloody Mary Delight

HELLO Happy Hour! Hello Weekend!  Lately Bloodys are my favorite drink.   I'm proud to say that... I successfully made my very first Bloody Mary last Saturday. Mmm... it was like a yummy *spiked* vegetarian meal in a glass.  What do you put in your Bloody Marys? Now go drink your vegetables! ♥

[Recipe] Italian Pesto Stuffed Bell Peppers

I love stuffed peppers! Loaded with veggies, lean meat, and brown rice this meal was super filling and tasty. I also added fresh homemade pesto  (recipe coming soon!) to the sliced pepper at the end for an extra kick. Next time I'll try mixing the pesto in with the filling. Can't seem to get enough pesto these days! I'm just a little obsessed.   [Recipe] Italian Pesto Stuffed Bell Peppers Serves 4 INGREDIENTS 5 bell peppers* (color of your choice) 1 cup of cooked rice (or substitute any whole grain, like quinoa or couscous) 1 medium onion 1 can of crushed tomatoes* 1-2 cloves of garlic garlic 1 can of chickpeas* 1 lb ground turkey* (substitute any other meat or tofu crumble) 2 packets of Italian dressing seasoning (or use your own special seasoning) 1/2 cup shredded cheddar* (or other type of cheese) *Try to purchase these ingredients local/organic/free-range, if possible. DIRECTIONS Cook rice per directions; set aside. Preheat oven to 375-degrees.

Dragon Lady Chinese New Year

Last Sunday I went to a Chinese New Year celebration show at the Atlanta Symphony Hall. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but I got eyes and ears full of talented performances. The first two acrobat performances were my favorite with contortionist poses and incredible skill levels. Its exciting to watch! All I could think about was how much time, training and dedication goes into something like this. Ballerinas practice for years before they can dance on their pointed toes alone, let alone balance on a man's head while balancing on one toe! These people are super strong and it must require extensive training to prepare for performances like this one. I'm impressed to say the least. The next acrobat was performing an act known as blanket juggling, which doesn't really sound like much. However, it was incredible and this girl's skill was amazing! I'm literally in awe. Check out the video below and see for yourself. DRAGON LADY Contortionist Acrobat Lu L

Sailing the Culinary Seas @ Trader Joe's

Guess where I've been... sailing the culinary seas, my friend. Trader Joe's  has become one of my favorite food markets and I'm SO happy that its in my neighborhood! As I was eating this lovely meal below, I was thinking that 99% of the ingredients were purchased at Trader Joe's and/or were TJ products. Veggie Crab Cakes with Sour Cream and Hot Sauce on Butter Lettuce Salad with Organic Cherry Tomatoes and Cucumber Roasted Red Pepper Tomato Soup with Green Onions and Oyster Crackers Deliciousness! ♥

Dean Martens Special Speaking Engagement @ Living Foods Institute

Last week I was able to attend a special lecture by Dean Martens held at the Living Foods Institute in Atlanta. Dean is a Clinical Herbalist and President & Founder of Herbs of Light, Inc . He was an especially engaging speaker with a bounty of wisdom, welcoming charisma and a big heart. I've been inspired by his speech to work on improving some of my own healthy habits. Juicing and eating more organic produce Exercising often Drinking water, at least half my body weight in ounces daily Supplementing with Moringa, Himalayan Crystal Salts and Coconut Oil regularly I have a few posts lined up to tell you more about that last bullet point above. I learned some pretty amazing things and can't wait to share them with you!  I'm also excited to learn more about the classes and workshops happening at the Living Foods Institute, which is a complete wellness center here in Atlanta. Especially interested in the raw food classes...and it just happens to be really close to my

[Recipe] Savory Quinoa Burgers

First, I'd like to say...THANK YOU PINTEREST! Now I'm always finding delicious looking food, and this one is  mighty  tasty. As I promised the Twitterverse, here's my post on the amazing Quinoa Burgers I made last night. Adapted from this fabulous recipe by Linda @ Eating Well...Living Thin . For this recipe I used a mix of goat cheese and sour cream instead of cottage cheese, since that was all I had in my kitchen. It was about the same consistency and worked well. I also added sunflower seeds for extra crunch. I ate mine on a green salad, but I'm sure these would be delicious on a bun all dressed up like a regular burgers. However, this is no regular packs a lot of flavor WITH great nutrition. I also made minis in a mini muffin pan -- I adore anything bite size! Enjoyed a few of these on my salad for lunch today and they turned out great. You will be seeing many more Quinoa "burgers" on the blog, with a variety of flavor combinations. I

Meatless Monday Resolution

Sometime last year I discovered Meatless Monday , and it's really become a movement! One day a week you cut out meat -- it's THAT simple. For most of 2011 I tried to eat meatless on Monday, but missed a few here and there. Now that it's a new year I thought Meatless Monday would be the perfect resolution for me, while also making a great blog series! Although I do love bacon and a good grass-fed free-range burger every now and then, I'm leaning more and more towards a  pescatarian  lifestyle. Basically eating a LOT less turkey, chicken and beef overall with a focus on seafood, eggs and making veggies the star of every meal. I tend to feel more vibrant when I eat this way. Its all about finding what works for you. Eating vegetarian for a day is in no way limited to boring oatmeal, plain salads or simple beans and rice. It can be an exciting way to discover new recipes and produce you may not normally try. Eating meatless can be interesting, tasty and nutritious. Find

Benefits of Face Brushing

You've heard me talk about Body Brushing and all the wonderful health and beauty benefits that come along with it, but what about Face Brushing? You can brush your face and neck and get the same type of benefits as body brushing delivers! Facial brushing removes dead skin and stimulates circulation , which firms and improves skin tone . Your skin will become softer and smoother ! It's like a mini facial massage every time you brush, a fabulous way to spoil yourself during your daily facial cleaning routine. In order to do the face brushing sequence you need a small natural-fiber bristle brush . The important thing to look for when selecting the appropriate face brush are natural plant fiber bristles. Do not use the type with plastic bristles because it will not have the same effect. I'm excited to announce that T-Tapp now sells  face brushes ! In addition to the Body Brushing Sequence,  Teresa Tapp created a special Face Brushing Sequence that has been proven

Crispy Local Brussels Sprouts with Organic Goat Cheese @ Yeah! Burger

My favorite side lately is simple... Crispy Local Brussels Sprouts with Organic Goat Cheese . Yeah! Burger knows how to rock this dish. They also have incredible customer service, 30% off every other Foursquare check-in and Keepin' It Real card with special offers for repeat customers. Boom. Done. Go get some! ♥

Fried Green Tomatoes & Vegetarian Club Wrap @ Whistle Stop Grill & Bar

On the last day of my Florida vacation we walked to downtown Safety Harbor and enjoyed a meal at Whistle Stop Grill & Bar . We started off with a pitcher of Whistle Stop's Popaden Red , a delicious amber ale. And decided that the  Fancy Fried Green Tomatoes were a must. They came topped with goat cheese, chopped fresh red tomatoes and cilantro. Abbie and I shared the  Vegetarian Club Wrap with organic oat burger, fresh grilled vegetables, goat cheese and balsamic vinaigrette  in a whole wheat wrap. Plus a side of some tasty black eyed peas for a touch of Southern luck . Then we skipped off to the 8th Avenue Pub for some local fun. Walking: 1.5 miles round trip ♥

New Years Brunch @ Sun in My Belly

It has been said that when Picasso was asked what it was that compelled him to create, his response was the "Sun in my Belly." Sun in My Belly has been on my Atlanta restaurant to-do list since I moved here. I'm not sure why it's taken me so long to get there, but now I wish I'd gone months ago! The food was incredible , and I don't think it was just my hangover. I started off with a Pumpkin Spice Latte while we waited for our table. My sister and I split  The Hangover ~ Housemade Biscuit with Melted Cheddar + Sausage  Fried Green Tomatoes + Fried Egg + Avocado + Sriracha + served with Cheddar Smothered Hashed Potatoes . Between the four of us we shared an order for the Challah French Toast Stuffed with Honeyed Ricotta and served with Banana Foster + Maple Syrup . TO DIE FOR.  And finally a delicious Roasted Beet Couscous + Goat Cheese + Orange & Cumin Vinaigrette . I adored their streamers made of torn fabric strips , white daisies in tiny vases

Ringing in the New Year

Hello, 2012. Nice to meet you. Back in Atlanta for the New Year, we walked to A&J's house for a Boogie Nights 70s party. Before leaving Florida, I bought a sweet bread from a Greek bakery with a lucky coin baked inside. The story is that the person who finds the coin in their piece of bread will have good luck for the year. The hostess was the lucky one! A little Chambord and fresh raspberries were a perfect way to make the champagne extra special. Super fun night with some of my favorite people. ♥ ♥

Florida Holiday Highlights

I just returned from a holiday tour of Florida with my sister last week. From the Atlantic beach house near St. Augustine to sleepy Safety Harbor , we made some serious rounds in a week! I ate some amazing food  (lots of veggies!), but my favorites were the homemade pizza and pesto goat cheese bruschetta featured below. My cousin made the pizza dough and all from scratch! It was so much fun shopping in St. Augustine with my mom and sister. We discovered some neat shops and local treasures . I'd love to go back to St. Augustine for another vacation. I loved seeing my family all together in one place! I rode almost 20 miles on a beach cruiser bicycle and jogged on the beach while taking in the ocean sights and smells . Here are some of the photo highlights... ♥