Wednesday, December 18, 2019

After all these years, I've finally made my way to Hawaii! There's so much to explore and so little time.  Ms. Lin Guide and I came here for my birthday celebration.  It's important that you plan on renting a car to explore the island and get around.  The drive is quite scenic and full of good eats! We spent a full day exploring North Shore.  One place that I researched and caught my eye was Kahuku Farms because they offer a wide variety of local products ranging from lotion to butters to syrups and more! They even serve drinks and home made desserts.  The grilled banana bread is a must! It caught my eye and I just had to try it.  They cover it with decadent caramel and vanilla haupia.  So delicious!

Their 'cafe' is almost just like a small street stand.  The people were very friendly and you can sample all the products they sell before you purchase.  What really caught my interest is lilikoi, which is passion fruit.  The syrup tastes just like a fresh passion fruit, of course enhances with sugar.  I've beehn trying to find a real tasting passion fruit syrup.  So many options are just chemically made and don't have the same fragrant aroma that theirs have.  If you are going to chemically make passion fruit syrup, people please taste what a real passion fruit tastes like! Lol. I bought two bottles for home.
Picture from Kahuku Farms website

They also offer lilikoi butter and varieties of jam.  At the stand they offer bulk deals if you buy 4, which was not bad.  Everything tasted very fresh and had a smooth texture.  They would go great on bread or pancakes.  Both Ms. Lin Guide and I picked up a bunch for ourselves and to give away as gifts.  If you buy $40 worth of products, you receive a free tote as well.  Before I checked out, I heard. Someone talk about a secret code for extra discount.  Hint : find one of their brand ambassadors to get the code and sign up for rewards.  We bought so much that we left with 3 rewards.  😇
Picture from Kahuku Farms website

Friday, November 29, 2019

It's getting harder and harder to find good happy hour deals.  Brio Tuscan Grille has always offered a pretty decent selection of happy hour appetizers and drinks.  What's even rare is that the prices are quite reasonable!

For about $5 you can get their Beef Carpaccio, which is quite reasonable.  They definitely don't skimp on portion size.  I always order one for myself as I don't share my meat! Lol. The carpaccio is always light and refreshing.  This appetizer contains four of the five food groups, so I'm counting it as a healthy dish.  😇

Their Chicken Pesto Flatbread is also a must that's only $5.  Be sure to ask for their fresh Parmesan cheese to give it that extra kick.  I enjoy the crispy texture of the flatbread mixed with a tasty pesto sauce and shavings of chicken on top.  Definitely eat it fresh and hot from the oven.

For the holiday season they offer a gift card special.  If you buy $100 worth then you will receive a $25 bonus gift card.  You can even use it for happy hour, which is an even better deal.  To my surprise, they brought out a small bottle of their olive oil.  Perfect for holiday cooking!

Monday, July 15, 2019

For fans of the HBO show “Silicon Valley,” one of my favorite scenes is when the character Gavin Belson, CEO of Hooli, tells his team that “the bear is sticky with honey” after making tea. Hilarity ensues as his team then spent days to decipher his comment as shome metaphor and eventually brought in an actual bear for an upcoming product launch. You have to watch that episode!

As a result, I’ve never been able to look at another bear bottle of honey without laughing!

Nonetheless, these adorable bottles of honey are constant staples in my cabinet. They are good not just for tea and other drinks, they also make a much healthier and more natural substitute for sugar/sweeteners in cooking. I use honey in everything from curing my cold (honey and lemon/ginger do wonders) to marinating chicken/ribs/pork chops to topping my dessert (especially ice cream) plus much more.

Sweet Harvest offers a good variety of honey, from your standard honey to a craft line that includes monofloral sources such as orange blossom and lychee. They also offer organic and non-GMO products as well.

Monday, May 6, 2019

Who has time for cooking these days? I actually do but I'm too lazy to cook all the time. You know what I mean. 😁. I was browsing through H Mart and they had some tasty samples.

They were sampling a bunch of Pulmone products that actually motivated me to purchase. I was even more motivated since they were simple to make. The Pork and Glass Noodles Potstickers were super tasty and reminded me of the Chinese chive pockets. Although the skin used is different, the filling tastes very similar. It's flavorful enough not to need any dipping sauce. I personally like it more crispy so you can keep them on the grill longer until golden brown.
The Ddukbokki Kit was soft and flavorful. I have yet to make it but I like that the kit includes seaweeds rolls that you grill on the side to add in. It provides a mix of soft with a hint of crispy texture. For those of you who like sweet with a hint of spicy, this would be perfect.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Ever since my first trip to Paris eons ago, I've been going to Cafe Angelina for their famous African hot chocolate served with Chantilly cream.  They offer a wide variety of French pastries and typical cafe items. On my first trip I bought their famous African chocolate shavings to bring back and make my own hot chocolate.  Sadly it wasn't nearly as good because I'm sure they slow churn the chocolate at the cafe to give that velvety thick texture. When you make it at home it is so watery.  Now they actually sell the chocolate drink in a bottle.  I've bought some but haven't had a chance to drink them yet.  The consistency looks more like what's served at the cafe.  

The African hot chocolate is delicious but it can be a lot of sweetness in one sitting.  Now I tend to just share it with someone so that I don't get sweeted out.  I've been a few times in summer and I now get the iced African chocolate that's not as overwhelming.  It is still sweet but very refreshing in the heat.  I feel the hot chocolate is more filling than the iced chocolate but when it is hot outside, I'd definitely recommend the iced to cool down and relax.  Personally I love their decor that gives me this majestic and nostalgic feeling.  My favorite location is the one near the Louvre where you can also peruse around for some great scenery and photo ops.  ^_~

Cafe Angelina
226 rue de Rivoli
75001 Paris

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Pic pulled from Whisps' website

If you love cheese, you'll love Whisps Parmesan Crisps! Ever since I first found them in Costco, they have become one of my favorite items there! You could eat them as a snack or add them to any dish.  They would go great in salads to add texture or a hamburger and more.  Personally, I just eat them like you would with potato chips! They are made from real cheese so I'm going to 'consider' this one of the 'healthier' snacks lol.  I know I may be lying to myself a little, but I can't help but munch on these! Lol
They offer a wide variety of flavors.  I only know of the original because that all Costco sells but at the Fancy Food Show they finally had a booth and sampled their new flavors.  Now they have asiago and cheddar cheese crisps.  If only Costco sold them! I'd buy them all because I need it in bulk! Lol Recently Costco even had them on sale and I picked up a few bags.  It was hard not buying a whole case!

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Pulled from Irvins' website

So what's the hottest trend in Asia these days?  Apparently salted egg has made a huge come back! Ms. Lin Guide has brought a plethora of snacks from Taiwan and Singapore all consisting of salted egg.  It has always been a popular item with Asians but in the past year or so it's now in every snack possible.  Even the sweet ones! Lol
I personally detest most egg items, especially salted egg in my moon cake and the likes.  So when Ms. Lin Guide decided to fly just to Singapore for a snack made with salted eggs, I thought she was crazy.  Well crazier than normal lol 😇.  She was also inspired by the movie Crazy Rich Asians, but later she admits it was really for the snacks.  She absolutely looooves the Irvins Salted Egg Fish Skins!
Apparently they were so sought after that you are limited on how much you can buy in store as they couldn't produce enough to keep up with demand! In preparation for this, Ms. Lin Guide went prepared and ordered online to make sure she can buy enough to bring back to last a good while.  They offer the salted egg on a variety of items.  She brought us the original fish skins, potato chips, and spicy fish skins.  It was a savory taste buffet at home! Lol

Everything was so crisp and fresh.  Even the bags itself state that they are dangerously addicting! Once you start snacking, you just can't stop.  The scary part is how much cholesterol you ingest from just one bag! Warning to those with cholesterol problems! Lol  Usually I enjoy spicy food but the spicy fish skins were a bit much.  It's actually decently spicy but it over powers the flavor of the salted egg in my opinion.  The fish skins were delightfully crisp with tons of salted egg crumbles surrounding it.  I could sit and eat the original fish skins for a long while but not as long as I could eat the chips! Normally I'm all about meat or seafood, but the chips felt much lighter and were much dangerous because I could easily eat one or two bags in one sitting.  So dangerous! 

These snacks are actually quite pricey and not the easiest to get.  Good news, their popularity has started to spread worldwide.  They now have a store in Taiwan so Ms. Lin Guide can easily get them.  I took a quick look and they are available online from specialty sites, of course at a higher price.  Luckily I have my connections and an awesome Ms. Lin Guide to bring them back for me! 😉

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