Sunday, August 14, 2011

Dog Watchin' and Snooze Eatin' :)

One more week left of this great adventure I've been on. It seems like it has been a long time since I've been home...but sometimes it feels like the time has flown by. Hopefully this week will allow me to go out "with a bang!" It will be hard saying good-bye to these awesome people. I've decided that Coloradans might be the most friendly people west of Iowa ;)

This beautiful pooch is Sadie--I am dog-sitting this last week for an awesome couple I met at work. I think she's a corgie(? spelling)...not really sure. One day I will be better with knowing dog breeds!

Sadie is very well-mannered and practically drug me on our walk this morning! It is fun thus far!

Also...I'm not ashamed to say that I have an addiction--to Snooze A.M. Eatery! Let me just start by saying I didn't mean to begin this habit...but I fell into the routine of eating at Snooze and then going on a walk the past few weekends. I'm not letting myself feel bad though...because I THOROUGHLY enjoy it! It's research, right? hehehe

Iced Chai Tea...SUPER good! Not too sweet--and "cinnamoned" ice cubes to boot :)

Don't be alarmed! Yes, those pancakes are blue! These are the Blue Mesa Pancakes: blue corn and buttermilk pancakes studded with sweet corn and topped with a pinion (pine nut) butter and green chile maple syrup. This may sound weird...but I was drawn to it. I was so happy to find out they were delicious! They kind of had a cornbread flavor. No...I couldn't finish them in one sitting, which is saying something ;)

I will leave you with my breakfast from last Sunday: Vanilla Almond Oatmeal Brulee--WOWZA! This was exceptional and served with a little pot of cream. Again, Snooze does a great job with embellishing food without making it too sweet--which I appreciate.

Don't judge me...if you were here you'd get sucked into the trap too! Enjoy the rest of your weekends and have a pleasant week to follow.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Denver Food Trucks

It was a hot day in Denver, but my co-workers and I decided to brave the heat and explore the Denver Food Trucks for lunch today. Civic Center Park in downtown Denver is where they are located.

Every Tuesday and Thursday during the summer through September food trucks (and vans!) set up for an on-going event called Civic Center Eats. There were many people in business attire that stopped during their lunch break.

We went around and looked at ALL of the food before we made our decision on what to eat. There was BBQ, hot dogs, tamales, Argentinian fare, Mexican chile bowls, slow-cooker meals, biscuit bowls, pizza and ice cream.

With it being so hot...I settled on a roasted turkey sandwich with romaine, chipolte mayo and cranberry salsa. I found it at the Street Eats venue (pictured above). The sandwich did not disappoint as it was FULL of flavor!

 My supervisor got chimichurri fries from the truck above...she also got avocado and cheese arepas. Someone got a beef arepa. I think I'm spelling this dish is basically a corn-based, dense pocket of dough that is toasted up like a panini and filled with various fillings. They looked good!
 Finally, our last person ate at the "Crock Spot." She got a bowl of couscous with slow-cooked shredded beef mixture that was prepared in a crock pot.
Above is the truck where they got the arepas :)

This was so much fun to experience! It will have to take the place of the Iowa State Fair for me this year!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Winter Park, Colorado

Greetings again family and friends! This weekend I went on an adventure with one of my co-workers. She wants to have her wedding ceremony near Winter Park, CO and wanted to check out some locations this past weekend. She asked me to go along...and I was very willing!

I knew I wanted to go back to see this area as it's been awhile since 5th grade when I saw it last :) It was just as I left it! Minus the bad beetle rot that has gotten ahold of several trees around the area-it's such a shame!

 We ate Mexican for lunch...I love fish tacos! I get them at practically every Mexican restaurant. These were delicious!
 Here we are at one of the locations...I really liked this one! It was nice and secluded.
 Along with it being the weekend for the music festival (Brett Michaels was playing), it was also "Minis in the Mountains!" Here is a fleet of Mini Coopers we saw...there were fifty in a row! That was pretty cool...I already knew I wanted one :)
This is a blurry picture of Berthoud Pass...there were better ones but this one will have to do for now. It was a fun trip!

Thursday, August 4, 2011


I had a great experience getting to test some more recipes this week! Getting to learn that process and see how each dish transforms is so much fun :) Also, the testers are really fun ladies...we have a lot of giggles!

My favorite recipe of the day is the one had so many steps and blue cheese, which I'm normally not crazy about. First there's the caramelized red onions, then the Blue Cheese/chive butter, then the pan broiled flat iron steak, and finally...I sauteed the buns in oil on the stove to add extra love. The umami was flowing! All of those flavors really went well together.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Snooze A.M. FAVORITE restaurant in Denver!

When I asked around to see what places I should be eating at, everyone mentioned Snooze. It is a downtown Denver-based restaurant that has made its way to multiple locations around the area. It opens at 7 AM on weekends (week days it's 6 AM I believe) and closes by 2:30 PM. To me...I view that as a genius business idea. The popularity of this place is amazing; it's not out of the ordinary to have to wait 2 hrs on the weekends for bigger groups.

I was sure to take my family here when they visited. It is extremely lucky that there is a Snooze location at Southglenn Shopping Center. After I fell in love after the initial visit...I had to take Anna!

It all started with Vanilla Lattes served in honey jar-looking mugs. I couldn't resist and bought a mug on this visit :)

 This time...I ordered the Breakfast Pot Pie. Dad had gotten this when he came. I knew I should get it because he hasn't steered me wrong yet :) It was very, very tasty. The sausage gravy had some rosemary in it and the hashbrowns are wonderful!
Anna got the Peaches and Cream French Toast! There was a mascarpone cheese was great, not too sweet.

I have thoroughly enjoyed her company, what a blessing it has been!

Friday, July 29, 2011

IKEA...Swedish Meatball Combo Meal :)

We ventured out to the new IKEA for lunch...which was pretty brave for it being the third day open! Traffic is still being directed on the roads by police and the amount of people inside of that place is insane! I work with very ambitious people we trudged up the road and had the advantage of WALKING to IKEA.

One of my co-workers is from Illinois and told us about the Swedish our plan was to order the meal just to say we've had them. Once we got through the huge line our meatballs were the reward :) I will give the workers credit, the line moved fast for how many people were in it.

We all got the Swedish Meatball Combo, but I was the only one who got the lingonberry sauce and all! It was only $5.33 with tax and included: Swedish meat balls, mashed potatoes, gravy, lingonberry sauce, side salad, and a fountain drink. I may have to go back...I was a very satisfied customer. The Swedish meatballs were WAY better than I expected.

I actually left my hair down today...Mel this pic is for you (we are having a friendly hair-growing competition for her wedding). What do you think, is it a tie? :)

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Boulder, CO & this week!

Last weekend I took a BIG step and drove on I-25 around Denver. The reason for me doing so, was an invitation to come to see a friend who is staying in Louisville. She commutes to Denver daily for an internship. This is the same girl whom I went to the Museum of Art with.

Those who know me, know that I like to put boundaries up for myself and stay in a safe is safe to say I burst that bubble! Driving in five lanes was good for me, I am however holding off on driving in that until the drive home... in which I will be headed the other direction.

Traveling to Boulder was great fun though! It was our first experience of hiking in the mountains. These were called the Flat Irons (no, not the beef cut-ha) and part of the Colorado Chautauqua National Historic Landmark. We hiked a ways and then took an "air conditioning break" at Starbucks :) Later we drove up the mountain range towards what people were calling Flagstaff (look-out maybe?); the views were breath taking.

We found some lunch on Pearl Street in downtown Boulder at the aptly-named Boulder Cafe. It was delicious--I ordered a pulled pork sandwich with melted fontina cheese, served with chipolte-rhubarb BBQ sauce. That sauce I will most likely try to replicate!

 Anna was so great and kept pushing me to climb higher! We just kept going...and met some people from Texas who were in the same boat of being "first-timers."

I also wanted to mention an experience that was pretty exciting for me this week. My boss had asked me to be apart of recipe ideation involving a popular Midwestern food chain. I was delighted to be able to go through the process of creating new menu ideas...we shall see if any of them come to be.

So, on Monday we flew into Omaha, NE and drove to Des Moines, Iowa to get ready for our meeting on Tuesday. I got to see my parents and eat at the Machine Shed (what a treat!). Tuesday went well...and then we headed back west. It was literally a flying trip, so I'm sorry I didn't get to see more of my Iowa folk. Soon I will catch up with as many people possible!

Tomorrow I give my internship presentation to the, has the time gone quickly! A few more weeks and I will be headed back home. My co-workers want to celebrate by eating lunch at the new IKEA food court=Swedish Meatballs :) I'm going to miss my new friends...they are quite the characters!