Thinking Out Loud: Park Eats & Pumpkin Treats

What? Three posts in one week? Who am I?!?

 I hope you guys got a bit of entertainment out of yesterday’s hyperactive post. I swear I wasn’t even riding a caffeine high when I wrote it. I guess…well, I guess I just missed you guys and I’m finally getting my groove back. ;)

*smooches*

But whether I’m playing Stella in the film or not, today isn’t a day laid out for structure. Nope, today is a day for Thinking Out Loud!

Salmon Salad from Liberty Park Grill

I met some friends last Friday to try out one of Clarksville’s newest restaurants, Liberty Park Grill (I already want to go back again this weekend just to try the Buffalo Cauliflower appetizer!). Liberty Park is where my favorite walking tracks are in town and also where I spent most of last summer recuperating my my knee after surgery. The restaurant is connected right to the park and overlooks the river. I ended up ordering the salmon salad, not because I’m a huge fan of salmon, but because I HAD to have the toppings: sautéed mushrooms, cilantro, avocado, AND feta cheese, I just couldn’t say no!

I was actually surprised that I really enjoyed the smokey flavor of the salmon and I loved how all the flavors worked together. Also, the sweet(ish) vinaigrette that came with it was ahhhhhhhhmazing!

Farmer's Market Goodies

I FINALLY made it back to the farmer’s market last Saturday! Granted, I was a bit rushed after waking up at 12:30 (when the market closes at 1pm) but I made it and I came home with some tastes of fall and a couple of seasonal denial items…and I also picked up a jar of my favorite FROG jam!

Egg & FROG Jam Sandwich

Which made for a perfect sweet and savory breakfast sandwich on some SUPER fluffy garlicky herbed bread. Yes, I bought a loaf of bread at the market when I already some at home…neither of which got me any closer to that damn French toast craving that I’ve been having for weeks, but we all know how that turned out! ;)

Root Beer Green Tea

Speaking of going to the store and buying shit I don’t need. I’m back on the Big Lots bandwagon. I haven’t been in a while and over the last month, I’ve stopped in like five times! I found a box of decaf K-cups there the other day for NINETY CENTS! But what I really wanted to tell you guys about is this weird slash amazing tea! I stood in the aisle, hemming and hawing for like five minutes, but in the end, my curiosity won (like it always does). I have no regrets whatsoever. Actually, I’ve been back to buy more. It tastes like root beer…but it’s friggin’ GREEN TEA! And it’s even better mixed with this. :)

Pumpkin Chobani

Has anyone tried the new pumpkin Chobani yet? I have a recipe for my own Pumpkin Greek Yogurt, but I just had to see how it compared. And? Right on target! Oh and in case you were wondering, with Tuesday’s pancakes, the season of self tanner pumpkin has begun! Now if I could just find THIS, my life would be complete! C’mon, you guys KNOW my obsession with pumpkin and peanut butter!

And it looks like everyone else is just as excited for pumpkin-mania…

Screen shot 2014-09-03 at 2.41.18 AM

I took this screen shot of my stats last week after Buzzfeed featured my Crockpot Pumpkin Chili in a roundup of slow cooker recipes. Holy 4,438 views batman! My highest ever and EXACTLY what I needed to see after taking a month off from blogging.

And what would a ToL post be without a little tuneage? Remember when I mentioned Shakey Graves a few months ago? Well I just discovered a new band called Little Hurricane, with a very similar sound. Anthony “Tone” Catalano handles most of the vocals while Celeste “C.C.” Spina rocks.it.OUT on the drums! I have to say I have a soft spot for female drummers. I always wanted to play the drums when I was younger, but when I joined the middle school band, my dad told me they were “just for boys”.
Ha, well in yo face, Daddy-O! :P

Favorite line: “You and me are like biscuits and gravy” <3

Thinking-Out-Loud

Ok, I think that’s enough rambling for one day! Hop on over to Spoons and check out all the other thoughts running around the web today!

Have you broken out the pumpkin yet?

Any big plans for the weekend?
Since I’m working on Saturday, I plan on making the most out of the next two days…by carving an indention of my ass in the couch! But I DO hope to make it to Freeze Pleeze at some point because they just announced their pumpkin pie flavor is out! :D

Yes I have problems. I am aware of this.

Posted in Restaurant Review, Thinking Out Loud | Tagged , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

WIAW: Pumpkin Pannycakes

Alternative post titles:
1. That Time I Woke Up Craving Maple Syrup or…
2. Oh Look, I Ate Actual Meals!

So it’s been a while (again) since I’ve made it to a What I Ate Wednesday party. Like I mentioned in my last “Currently” post, I’ve basically been snacking my days away…and honestly I’ve got no complaints. I’m finally starting to accept the fact that most days, I eat like a bird. Though I can’t deny that occasionally I can be a bear! And now I’ve totally tied in a connection to our hostess with the most-est. If you’re a little lost, take a minute and check out this post. Ok, now that we’re all done gushing over that cuteness, let’s get to the FOOD…in the form of Wednesday’s Tuesday’s eats!

Trader Joe's Pumpkin Pancakes

Like I said, I woke up craving ONE thing! And though I’ve been craving French toast like a mad woman for the last couple of weeks, I have yet to make it to the store for a loaf of bread. Actually, I take that back, I’ve yet to remember to grab a loaf of bread in the SIX times I’ve been to the store in the last couple of weeks. Ha!

So I had just a liiiiiiiiiiiittle bit of this Trader Joe’s pumpkin pancake mix (that expired sometime last year) sitting in the pantry…which calls for butter and eggs and milk and shit. I opened my fridge…

I had eggs.

But I was determined to have myself some maple syrup pancakes so I set to work! I threw a bit of pumpkin in the bowl, a couple of egg whites, and enough water to get things shakin’ stirring, and BAM!

Trader Joe's Pumpkin Pancakes with Syrup

Pumpkin pancakes for your PIE HOLE!
*fist bump*

Then I spent the next hour editing and Instagramming my beautiful stack of semi-homemade-oh-my-god-I-feel-like-a-genius pancakes…even though it only took approximately three minutes to actually eat them.

After I finally got my ass off the kitchen floor…because yes, that’s where I photographed, edited, and inhaled my little punkin’ pannycakes…oh god WHY DID I SAY THAT? That is way to close to another word for lady undergarments which I refuse to say. Ok, pretend that didn’t happen. What was I saying? Where was my ass?

What got me movin’ and groovin’?

Coffee

Ohhhhhh ye-yah!

Though it only resided in my cute little TJ Maxx mug for a quick snap before it got thrown in a travel mug and then down my gullet on my way to the el job-o! Normally, I have a little snack at some point between the start of my shift and whatever I feel is “dinner” time, but this day, I was busier than a centipede in a toe counting contest. So instead, I just chugged an orange LaCroix and moved on.

Greek Salad

Dinner actually came in two minute increments spread out over about two hours. Eh, you take whatever you can get when you work at a hospital. Luckily, I had “some” leftovers from this weekend’s visit to my favorite Greek place in town (Sam’s Greek Cafe in the mall for all you locals!). I say “some” because the little middle-aged man was obviously a little sweet on me. My trip to the counter involved two bashful smiles, one high-five, fourteen packs of ketchup (for my friend’s fries), and a FIVE POUND Greek salad! Seriously you guys, I’m surprised the to-go container even closed!

It had lettuce, lamb, four gallons of tzatziki, twenty-four tomatoes, eighteen cucumbers, thirty bell peppers, eighty-six banana peppers, and more than five black olives. Oh and the pita bread was previously demolished on day one.

Hummus Snack

Things finally calmed down later in my shift and all of a sudden I was starving. Craving something with crunch, I raided my locker, aka my #blendswag safe! And yes, my carrots are sitting in a (CLEAN) emesis basin…thanks for noticing.

Cottage Cheese & Figs

And then, there was breakfast…I mean dinner…I mean…fuck it. When you work nights, it doesn’t even matter! My favorite cottage cheese (on sale at Publix this week, buy one, get one FREE!) topped with cinnamon, fresh figgys…figgies?…why am I talking like a baby? Balls!

I mean nuts…PEAnuts and honey! ;)

WIAW Teal

Wow, can you tell I’ve had a little too much coffee? Before I go too far, I’d better go. Besides, you have plenty of other #foodporn to check out!

What’s the BEST thing you ate yesterday?

Posted in Restaurant Review, What I Ate Wednesday | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Bye Bye [Food] Baggage!

Alternative post title:
That time I went on a trip and didn’t pack an extra suitcase just for food.

I noticed something after I got back from St. Louis last week…I uploaded the few food pics I had in my phone and realized that, compared to years past, I was a lot more relaxed about the food “situation”. Anytime that I’ve traveled in the last few years, I’ve always been super anxious about my meals and snacks and so I would end up packing up half the pantry “just in case”. Now, I’m not calling anyone out for packing their own food for trips. I am fully aware that there ARE instances where that is totally necessary, but I’m saying that for me, it was not.

So why don’t we take a look at a bit of carefree deliciousness?

McDonald's French Fries

No scoffing at this one. McDonald’s french fries are where it’s AT! I know Amanda agrees with me! They are especially good in a Happy Meal that comes with a toy who becomes the mascot for the trip. Seriously you guys, I can’t even TELL you the last time I stepped foot in a McDonald’s…or the last time someone mentioned it without me breaking into a sweat, but I have to say my little chicken nuggets, fries, and cute little bag of apple slices definitely hit the spot…without any guilt whatsoever.

Imo's Bacon Pizza

Then there was this mushroom, olive, and bacon pizza from Imo’s Pizza. Honestly, wasn’t a huge fan. I’ve had pizza from there before, but for some reason, the sauce tasted sweeter this time. But instead of totally freaking out, I just ordered a side salad, ate enough to quell my hunger, and moved on.

Peanuts & Pretzels

Of the few snacks I did pack for the trip, luckily I brought some peanuts and pretzels because they were basically the only thing Hungover Heather could handle for the first few hours everyday. Oops?

Caramel Crunch Zone Bars

These little Zone bars came in handy to have something on mine and my friends’ stomachs before hitting the bars up again each night. :lol:

Strange Donuts

There were a MILLION different food vendors at the festival…none of that corn dog and funnel cake shit! And this “Campfire” donut from Strange Donuts (that took me nearly half the day to eat) was absolutely amazing! Almost as good as the plate of white bean hummus and pita bread that I got from Triumph Grill whose picture was lost to Hangry Heather.

And yes, I did just say that hummus was better than a chocolate donut! Lol

Eovaldi's Toasted Ravioli

Also, the (unphotogenic so therefore unPICTURED) chef salad from Eovaldi’s Deli on the Hill beat out their toasted raviolis by a landslide. There was no thought to sodium, nitrates, or however much fat was in their smack yo’ mama house made Italian dressing…or the shitton of cheese on top!

Note to self: Find out where to buy Provel cheese…and then bathe in it.

Gooey Butter Cake

And c’mon, what would a trip to St. Louis be without a little gooey butter cake? Even though I’m not a huge sweets person (hence the multiple “meals” I got out of that donut) but I’ve always wanted to try one. So when my friends the sign for Park Avenue Coffee advertising 73 different flavors, we just had to check it out. I got the chocolate chip cookie dough version (because duh) and split it with one of my friends, but what I really wish I would’ve gotten was the honey latte that my other friend ordered…it tasted like pure HEAVEN!

And can I just take a moment to pat myself on the back? Because there has been absolutely no thought to “getting back on track” since my little vacation. I’ve enjoyed salads and cereal, Greek yogurt and cookies without batting an eye!

Who makes the best fast food fries?

What’s the best thing you’ve eaten lately outside your city?

Posted in Restaurant Review, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments