Star Ice In Houston, TX

lots of fresh fruit to choose from

Star Ice
9889 Bellaire Blvd
Houston, TX 77063

the front

this place seems like a hang out for the younger crowd. when I was here, there were teenagers at almost every table.

lots of fresh fruit to choose from

i was pleased to see the enormous selection of fruit toppings. very impressive.

avocado smoothie and jasmine tea

the jasmine tea with boba is what they are known for and it was refreshing with a kick to it. the avocado smoothie was disappointing and flavorless.
Star Ice & Teriyaki on Urbanspoon

Cafe Rose Nicaud in New Orleans, LA

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Cafe Rose Nicaud
632 Frenchmen Street
New Orleans, LA 70116

Their story, “In the early 1800′s Rose Nicaud became the first known coffee vendor in New Orleans. Rose, a slave, saw the opportunity to provide a service to French Market vendors, workers and shoppers by providing them with fresh, hot coffee. Rose created a portable cart which she pushed through the market on Sundays, selling “cafe noir ou cafe au lait”.

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With all of these choices, it was a tough choice to make.

This was definitely a family place. I loved the cozy ambiance.

breakfast burrito

My friend had the breakfast burrito. I got to steal a bite and can definitely assure you that they use only the freshest ingredients for this.

strawberry waffle

I decided to splurge and went for the strawberry waffles with maple syrup. This was an amazing dish and super affordable. Sweet!

Cafe Rose Nicaud on Urbanspoon

La Reyna in Baton Rouge, LA

ambiance

La Reyna
13213 Perkins Road
Baton Rouge

ambiance

It seems like not a lot of people know about this place. It is a bit a ways off the beaten path. I was sad to find that this place was empty when we came in (but deep down inside, that just means more authentic Honduran food with fresh ingredients for moi!)

Pollo en mole

The pollo en mole was a dish of stewed chicken cooked in a dark and spicy chocolate sauce with beans and rice. This was the best dish of the night. The chocolate sauce was so rich but not overly sweet. The chicken was tender and falling off the bone.

Puerco Guisado

The Puerco Guisado is a dish with stewed pork cooked in house spices with beans and rice. The house spices were a bit lost with the richness of the pork but overall I did appreciate the good quality of the ingredients.

La Reyna on Urbanspoon

Goode Company's Brazos Bottom Pecan Pie

cool box

Brazos bottom pecan pie, named one of Oprah’s favorite things, is a homemade recipe created in 1977.

cool box

This homemade, slow-cooked pie is a Goode Company specialty, packaged in a commemorative gift box reminding you to “thank your lucky stars you’re in Texas”… and that someone sent you something so delicious. I was fortunate enough to receive a complimentary pie in the mail and let me tell you what a joy it was to open the package and see the wooden crate.

pecan pie


With Thanksgiving right around the corner, you’ve probably got one thing on your mind: holiday shopping. (With what to serve beside your turkey a close second, of course.) Goode Company – best known throughout the country for their delicious barbecue and Brazos Bottom Pecan Pie – is hosting an all-day Cyber Monday promotion, full of hourly deals on all of Goode Company’s most sought after items.

On Monday, November 28 from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., you will find a new deal every hour on the hour ranging from free barbecue sauce with purchase, 25% off of that delectable Brazos Bottom Pecan Pie and surprise gift card giveaways..  

To become a true Goode Company insider and to learn about the deals before anyone else, we encourage those interested to sign up for our newsletter at http://bit.ly/rAlhVD. Here, they will be able to see the very first deal of the day at 7am, as well as learn more about Goode Company deals happening after Cyber Monday. Bargain-seeking BBQ fans will need to like us on Facebook and follow @GoodeCompany on Twitter to see each deal as it becomes available each hour throughout the day.

Goode Company Barbeque on Urbanspoon

Thanksgiving recap

new thermometer

new thermometer

1. The Turducken: for those of you who aren’t aware of this magnificent Cajun invention, it is a boneless chicken inside boneless duck inside boneless turkey. When I had called to place the order, we had our choices of stuffing and I went with cajun sausage. Into the oven at 375 degrees until the internal meat thermometer reads 165 degrees.  I actually didn’t own a meat thermometer beforehand and had to go out and purchase this one

prepping for the oven

basting the turkey

turducken

2. Tyler Florence Roasted sweet potatoes : Lay the sweet potatoes out in a single layer on a roasting tray. Drizzle the oil, honey, cinnamon, salt and pepper over the potatoes. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes in oven or until tender. Take sweet potatoes out of the oven and transfer them to a serving platter. Drizzle with more extra-virgin olive oil.

raw sweet potatoes

drizzled w honey, olive oil and cinnamon

sweet potatoes!

3. Paula Deen’s Spinach Gruyere Puff Pastry: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Drain spinach well, pressing between layers of paper towels to remove excess moisture. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms and cook, for 5 minutes. Stir together spinach, mushrooms and cheese; set aside. Roll 1 pastry sheet into a 13 by 11-inch rectangle. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Brush 1/2 melted butter over pastry. Spread 1/2 spinach mixture over butter. Roll-up, jellyroll fashion, starting with the long side. Repeat procedure with remaining pastry sheet, butter, and spinach mixture. (Wrap rolls in plastic wrap and refrigerate up to 2 days, if desired.) Cut rolls into 1/4-inch thick slices. Place on lightly greased baking sheets. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

thawed spinach

browned mushroom

layering on the pastry puff sheet

jelly roll

yummy

spinach gruyere puff pastry

4. Emeril’s cranberry sauce: In a small saucepan combine cranberries, orange juice and zest, port, sugar and cinnamon. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmering and cook until cranberries are tender, stirring occasionally. In a small cup make a slurry with cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water. Whisk cornstarch mixture into cranberry sauce and cook, whisking, until sauce thickens. Taste and add more sugar, if necessary.

making the sauce

cranberry sauce

5. Paula Deen’s corn casserole:  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  In a large bowl, stir together the 2 cans of corn, corn muffin mix, sour cream, and melted butter. Pour into a greased 9 by 13-inch casserole dish. Bake for 45 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from oven and top with Cheddar. Return to oven for 5 to 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted. Let stand for at least 5 minutes and then serve warm.

corn

corn casserole mix

corn casserole! by far my favorite of the entire meal

6. Goode Company’s Brazo’s Bottom Pecan Pie:

piece of pecan pie!

Bouchon Bakery in Yountville, CA

Bouchon Bakery
6528 Washington Street
Yountville, CA 94599-1397

yum!

from  the moment you walk in, there is a heavenly aroma in the air. and of course, there’s a ton of people between you and the window but once you get to the window, it is amazing.

bakery

i wanted one of everything, but had to stop myself and asked the girl behind the counter for all the favorites.

lots of selection

delicious!

  • bread puff

croissant

pistacchio

caramel

chocolate

Bouchon Bakery on Urbanspoon

Reginelli in New Orleans, LA

Dream State sandwich

Reginelli Pizza
3244 Magazine St
New Orleans

Dream State sandwich

The dream state sandwich has herbed goat cheese with roasted red peppers, roma tomatoes, pancetta, roasted eggplant, roasted walnuts and mixed greens dressed in a balsamic citrus vinagrette.  This was probably the best sandwich of the night.

Mid City Chicken Sandwich

The mid city chicken sandwich had cold chicken salad dressed with red onions, romaine lettuce, and roma tomatoes on focaccia bread. The bread was wonderful but the chicken salad was pretty typical and so, nothing spectacular.

Chicken Pita

I had the chicken pita pressed sandwich with marinated chicken breast with roasted red peppers, roasted garlic, and mozzarella with pesto. This was super garlic-y.  Overall, I wasn’t impressed but hey, I guess this is what you get for ordering sandwiches at a pizza restaurant.

Reginelli's Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

Victory Bar in New Orleans, LA

Compliemntary drinks

Victory Bar
339 Baronne Street
New Orleans, LA 70112

Compliemntary drinks

I had been wanting to check out this new bar in the CBD cuz I had heard that they served Korean BBQ and most of my friends had only tried the cocktail and so it was my food blogger duties to go and check out the food scene. When we arrived, we received complimentary “Not-Cosmopolitan” drinks. They were delish! Very nice way to start the night.

Honeysuckle drink

Lavender Fields

I had the Lavender fields drink cuz I saw white grape as one of the ingredients but when I drank it, the white grape flavor was lost. My friend loved her honey suckle drink and said that is her go to drink at Victory.

korean BBQ

Korean BBQ lettuce wrap

We started off with the Korean BBQ since that was the whole reason for our visit. It was good, not the best I’ve ever had in New Orleans, but still pretty good. The owner has a Korean friend and I guess they exchanged recipes and bam! here we are at this present day! I liked the meat to rice ratio, not too much rice. And don’t be fooled, this place serves kimchi but you gotta request it.

chicken satay

The other dish we had was the chicken satay. I really liked the peanut thai sauce, but my favorite had to be the chili dip (it wasn’t too hot). The chicken didn’t have much flavor to it but I guess that’s why the dipping sauces were there. Overall, a nice side dish to the korean BBQ.

chicken satay

sticky toffee cake

We got to meet the owner, Mr. Victory and after hearing about his story and eating to the brim of fullness,he brought out a sticky toffee cake on the house and said that if we couldn’t finish it, he would gladly eat our dish. After enjoying a conversation in the cozy atmosphere with plush seats, we digged in. The cake was a bit dense, but the ice cream and toffee flavor were phenomenal.

Victory on Urbanspoon

Taj Mahal Indian Cuisine in Metairie, LA

garlic naan

Taj Mahal Indian Cuisine
923 Metairie Road
Metairie, LA

This is the sister restaurant to Nirvana Indian cuisine in New Orleans. same owner.

garlic naan

garlic naan is one of my favorite dishes. the concept is so simple but the flavors really pop.

chicken saag

the chicken saag is a spinach based sauce. this isn’t one of the greatest saags I’ve ever had, but for the New Orleans area, it’s ok (which is the exact same review I gave of Nirvana in New Orleans).

chicken tikka masala

chicken tikka masala is my absolute favorite Indian dish but I realize that the Americanized version is completely out of what with the authentic version of this dish. Gordom Ramsay described it in the F Word, his new tv series where he goes to foreign countries and learns how to make authentic dishes that haven’t been tainted by the  western palette.

basmati rice

Taj Mahal Indian Cuisine on Urbanspoon