Counter Culture Coffee – Hologram Review – The Coffee You Probably Don’t Know About But Should!

It was a great mail day because this fresh new bag of coffee showed up on my doorstep. I ordered the Hologram blend from Counter Culture Coffee, and I have been eager to try it for some time now! I knew I would love this coffee from the moment I opened up the bag. If happy had a smell to it, it would smell a lot like this Hologram coffee. Once you open the bag and realize how inviting this coffee is you have to brew a pot! May I present to you my Counter Culture Coffee Hologram review! Keep reading this post to find out more about this brand you probably never heard of yet but should!

 

COUNTER CULTURE REVIEW by Give It A Whirl Girl

 

Beans! Beans! Beans! Back of the Counter Culture Coffee Hologram bag
Beans! Beans! Beans! Back of the Counter Culture Coffee Hologram bag

This roast is not the least bit heavy, quite the opposite. If bright and light blends appeal to you then this coffee would be perfect for you. It has a very smooth taste with hints of fruit and chocolate. It is a whole bean coffee so time to dust off that coffee grinder and put it to work. Coffee from fresh ground beans is always best anyway. This coffee might also go great in a French Press. Hmmm… now I might just need to try that!

Counter Culture Coffee Hologram
What is inside my rainbow cup? Counter Culture Coffee Hologram!

By the way, did you know that it is true that the lighter roasts of coffee have a higher caffeine content? Yup… it is true! You can read more about this HERE. I need caffeine to give me a jolt because without it I feel sluggish throughout the day. I always had the misconception that a bold, dark roast had more caffeine to it. Wrong!

Counter Culture Coffee Hologram
Counter Culture Coffee Hologram

 

Shop all of the Counter Culture Coffee Blends HERE.

 


Back of the Counter Culture Coffee Hologram bag
Back of the Counter Culture Coffee Hologram bag

Other Blends Of Counter Culture Coffee

There are a total of six different whole bean coffee blends for you to sip and discover! There is even a decaf blend for those moments when you want a cup of coffee without the jitters. When you buy coffee through Counter Culture Coffee you are going to get one of the freshest roasts of coffee that are out there. This brand is for the gourmet. Each bag of this coffee might be considered pricey to you but when you want a special cup of coffee, this brand is worth the price tag.

 

If you want to discover the maximum potential of Counter Culture Coffee let me suggest using a French press.


Fast Forward

This Counter Culture whole bean coffee is best described as nutty, sweet, and light.

 

Fast Forward - Counter Culture Coffee
Fast Forward

Forty-Six

Dark chocolate, smoky, and full-bodied whole bean coffee.

Forty-Six - Counter Culture Coffee
Forty-Six

Slow Motion

This whole bean coffee from Counter Culture Coffee is for those of you who enjoy drinking decaf coffee. This decaf coffee is best described as smooth with cocoa and molasses. I am not a fan of decaf coffee but the description alone does make me want to give this coffee a big whirl!

Slow-Motion - Counter Culture Coffee
Slow-Motion

Apollo

The whole bean Apollo coffee is a citrusy,  floral, and silky blend.

Apollo - Counter Culture Coffee
Apollo

Big Trouble

The Big Trouble whole bean coffee from Counter Culture is a rounded caramel and nutty blend. This coffee will brew up the perfect pot of coffee to kick your day off with!

Big Trouble - Counter Culture Coffee
Big Trouble

Shop for Counter Culture Coffee on Amazon

 

 


Question Time!

What blend of Counter Culture Coffee do you think you would enjoy the most? I am really looking forward to trying the Fast Forward and Big Trouble. If they are as good as Hologram I will be pleased as pie! Leave me a comment and let me know which flavor you are trying first.

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Counter Culture Hologram Coffee Review by Give It A Whirl Girl

 


 

Other posts you might enjoy at Give It A Whirl Girl!

 


Find out more about Counter Culture Coffee

 

 

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Paleo Turkey & Turmeric Chili – Gluten-Free – A Healthier Approach To Chili

Paleo Turkey & Turmeric Chili simmering in the Staub
Paleo Turkey & Turmeric Chili simmering in the Staub

It seems a bit early in the year still for chili but temps are cooling down a bit here in Michigan and I so ready to make my first batch on Sunday night. This version that I created was totally paleo (gluten-free) and this time around to keep it paleo I avoided kidney beans, which I usually do love to use in my chili. I also usually use ground beef and I switched it up and went for a lean ground turkey. I had a craving for some paleo turkey chili and I had to make it to satisfy my craving! The added turmeric was a nice touch as well. My husband and I reveled in this bowl of comforting chili. There is just something so comforting about eating chili. It is always satisfying and it is also so simple to make!


How I created this paleo turkey chili

This chili will make quite a few servings. I would say anywhere from 4-6 servings, depending on how much you place into your bowl. It started off with garlic and onion sauteed in the Staub until it reached a nice translucent, golden color. You will need a large pot to prepare the chili in. I love to use my Staub dutch oven for meals like this. The Staub is a heavy-duty piece of cooking equipment. It is very durable and built to last a lifetime. I always enjoy cooking with it.

Then came the lean ground turkey. I broke that up with a wooden spoon and continued to brown it. I seasoned the turkey with some organic chili powder, turmeric, cumin, smoked paprika, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper. This was my first time using turmeric in my chili so I was not sure how we were going to like it.

While the meat was browning I also added in some diced red and green bell peppers. Every chili needs to be chock full of peppers for me. Peppers in every bite! For this chili, I also decided to add some chopped zucchini pieces.

Once the meat was cooked and browned I added in an entire can of Muir Glen Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes. This is my favorite brand of tomato products that I currently use. Muir Glen is an organic line of tomato products and they always lend an extraordinary flavor to the dish I am preparing. You can read more about Muir Glen HERE and their principles as a company. They are outstanding!

I allowed this chili to simmer for a couple of hours. This can also be prepared in a slow-cooker and simmer all day in there. Just be sure to brown/cook the meat before putting it in there.

Continue reading “Paleo Turkey & Turmeric Chili – Gluten-Free – A Healthier Approach To Chili”

The Woohoo “I Made Marshmallows” Cake – Homemade Marshmallows Cake (Gluten-Free)

I got a new apron yesterday and I needed a reason to put it on and wear it. I couldn’t just walk around the house doing nothing with my apron on right?? So I decided to delve into a recipe for paleo (gluten-free) marshmallows. I was going to make a marshmallow cake and I was going to make it gluten-free. I have never in my life made marshmallows so this fit in nicely with my Tried It Out Tuesday theme. I am on a roll today because I already did a post for that earlier today. So I decided to make these marshmallows but could not stop there. I WANTED TO WEAR MY APRON LONGER! So then I went into the pantry and got out my cake mix and decided I would crank out a cake too. Great idea and a good way to kill the time.

Gluten Free Marshmallow Cake
Gluten Free Marshmallow Cake

How I Created Homemade Marshmallows The Paleo Way!

Since I had no idea where to start with these gluten-free marshmallows that I wanted to construct it was time to bust out my best friend Google. I often like to go with the first thing that pops up and that was a recipe from Our Paleo Life. Seemed simple enough and lucky me, I had all of the ingredients on hand. I did not have a candy thermometer though so I tried my best just to use a regular cooking thermometer.

Great Lakes Gelatin

For the recipe, I had Great Lakes Unflavored Beef Gelatin in my pantry. That is some great stuff! You can make your own healthy gummy candies with it and reap the benefits of gelatin. I also had some honey on-hand and that was another main ingredient. I was nervous while making this because of the lack of a proper thermometer so I just had to use my brain. I am happy to say that after these set for a few hours in the fridge they turned out great. Quite a bit different from a regular marshmallow but definitely edible and good in a weird sort of way. I didn’t use a knife to cut these out and make them square. Silly me just used the top of a water bottle to cut out a simple circle shape. And they turned out looking like banana slices. Ooopsy!

Paleo marshmallows ready for the fridge and before candy sprinkles
Paleo marshmallows ready for the fridge and before candy sprinkles

Pamela’s Gluten-Free Cake Mix

I have been using Pamela’s Vanilla Cake Mix (gluten-free) quite a bit lately and I love the finished product with this mix. I did end up using about an extra 1/4 cup of coconut oil to give it a nice boost in moistness. Worked like a charm!

How I Used Wilton’s Checkerboard Cake Kit and Lorann Oil

This time around I decided to use my Wilton Checkerboard Cake Pan Set. You are supposed to use at least 2 bags of mix if you want the finished product on the box but I only had 1 mix and there are only two of us here. I used two cake pans and got 2 short layers. For the two layers I did one with just nonpareils candy sprinkles and the other one I dyed pink with my Wilton Icing Colors. I also added some Marshmallow Flavor Oil from Lorann Oils to give it a marshmallow flavor.

Cake batter divided evenly with pink and funfetti
Cake batter divided evenly with pink and funfetti

I had a lot going on in the kitchen and I was having a blast! Seriously, who needs therapy when you have baking? Baking takes me to another place and makes me forget about all of my troubles. Baking totally washes everything away that is bad in my life. It is so therapeutic!

The Icing On The Cake!

Oh gosh! I almost forgot to talk about the Swiss meringue buttercream that I created. I usually just do a standard buttercream but this time I used 5 egg whites in there and whipped it up really good in my stand mixer. Not as runny as the last time I made buttercream but still a little on the drippy side. Boohoo! Well, I am learning. Everything conveyed here on this blog is all about my journey to become a better cook and a better baker! I went with the color purple for the icing since I already did a pink cake and a teal blue cake. The buttercream turned out so divine and I owe it all to the magic that is known as Chef Shamy. You seriously all need to try the Vanilla Bean Butter from Chef Shamy in your buttercream recipe. It is a bit pricey but so worth it if you are going for a heavenly taste in your next cake!

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Are you all waiting to see the final product?

Gluten-Free Marshmallow Cake With Homemade Marshmallows
Gluten-Free Marshmallow Cake With Homemade Marshmallows
Gluten-Free Marshmallow Cake With Homemade Marshmallows
Gluten Free Marshmallow Cake
Gluten-Free Marshmallow Cake With Homemade Marshmallows
Gluten Free Marshmallow Cake
Gluten-Free Marshmallow Cake With Homemade Marshmallows
Gluten Free Marshmallow Cake
Gluten Free Marshmallow Cake
Gluten Free Marshmallow Cake

Overall, I am super satisfied with how this turned out! I am really nailing it on flavors! I need to work on my decorating technique big time. BIG TIME! I am bound and determined to get good at decorating my baked goods.

Have you ever made your own marshmallows? I found the whole process to be enjoyable and fun! Leave me a comment and let me know. I love to hear from my readers.

 

Other posts you might enjoy at Give It A Whirl Girl

 

 

 

Apple & Fennel Chicken Breasts With Hilary’s Eat Well And Some Roasted Broccoli & Shallots

I am using a lot more marinades since I found some healthy alternatives to the usual stuff out there. Hilary’s Eat Well Apple Fennel Dressing/Marinade helped make my chicken breast dinner a masterpiece last night! This dressing only uses real ingredients and it is free from common allergens. I love that this line of products uses only wholesome, organic ingredients. Today I am going to talk mainly about the chicken dinner I created but I will also discuss a salad that I created with this dressing as well. It is a great, versatile ingredient for your next meal.

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Apple Fennel Chicken Breast w/ Hilary’s Eat Well Dressing & Marinade with roasted broccoli and shallots
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Hilary’s Eat Well Apple Fennel Dressing/Marinade

I marinated the chicken breast in the Apple Fennel Marinade for a few hours so I could infuse my chicken with this flavor. It might even work better to marinate the chicken overnight. I used my Lodge Cast Iron Grill Pan to cook the chicken breast. I also added some sliced red apples to the pan to grill them up too.

For a side dish I had broccoli and shallots roasting in the oven. Instead of using olive oil, which I normally use, I tried out the Primal Kitchen Extra Virgin Avocado Oil. Great choice there because this broccoli turned out delish.

This dish turned out absolutely wonderful. Even though it is still summer I am getting a hankering for fall flavors. A couple nights ago I made a turkey chili. I am so ready for fall!

This dressing is gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free, egg-free, corn-free, and nut-free. So if you are trying to avoid allergens this is a great product for you. The main ingredient in this dressing is apple cider vinegar, which had many health benefits! It also uses extra virgin olive oil, sunflower oil, dandelion root, fennel, and a few other natural ingredients. There are no unusual, unpronounceable ingredients on the label. When I see a label with weird ingredients I try my best to avoid them. I love that this product keeps it real!

Continue reading “Apple & Fennel Chicken Breasts With Hilary’s Eat Well And Some Roasted Broccoli & Shallots”

Take Flight And Start Your Day With A Healthy & Nutritious Thunderbird Bar – REVIEW -Tried It Out Tuesday

I am so happy to be an Ambassador to this great company Thunderbird Bars. Now is the time for me to spread the word about these amazing bars to my readers with this Thunderbird Bar review. I want to let you in on a little secret… these bars are amazeballs! The best thing about them is that they are all natural and made with REAL FOOD ingredients: fruits, nuts, seeds, and spices. If you are vegan, following a paleo diet, and are looking for a no-added-sugar treat, Thunderbird Bars are for you! You have to trust me on this, these bars are an excellent snack and they are especially great while on-the-go and the hunger hits you. I have been eating these for the past month now and I feel the need to spread the word about them.

Thunderbird Bar Pecans + Goji + Pistachio in Eastern Market, Detroit, MI
Thunderbird Bar Pecans + Goji + Pistachio in Eastern Market, Detroit, MI

Thunderbird Bar - What We DO

There are ten flavors available for Thunderbird Bars and every single one of them is delish!

No boring flavors over here! These bars are unlike every other bar I have experienced. As you may already know, I live for the thrill of trying new foods. These flavors do not disappoint one bit and they satisfy my hunger. Their flavor combinations are unique and each and every single one of them delivers a satisfying taste.


Thunderbird Bars Variety Pack
Thunderbird Bars Variety Pack

Want to know my favorite flavor of the ten that are available? I’m going to say it is the Pineapple + Mango + Papaya. I’m always a sucker for anything tropical and I love how all of these flavors blend together.

I have included an image of the bar in a photo below. It might look a bit on the small side but these bars are quite filling. This bar has seven simple ingredients noted on the label: prunes, buckwheat groats, papaya, raisins, mango, pineapple, and Hawaiian black lava salt. No BS here… just pure + simple real food ingredients.

This bar comes in at 145 calories, 30g of carbohydrates, 3g of fiber, and 22g of natural (no-added) sugar.

Thunderbird Bar also stays away from sweeteners. You will not find any real, artificial, honey, syrup, agave or any other variety of sweetener in their bars. There are not many bars that you can come across that promise that.

These bars will give you energy and endurance during your day derived purely from the real food ingredients. I love to start my day with a Thunderbird Bar. It gives me the fuel that I need to conquer the day.

Thunderbird Bar in Detroit, MI - Pineapple + Mango + Papaya
Thunderbird Bar in Detroit, MI – Cashew + Fig + Carrot
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Thunderbird Bar Pineapple + Mango + Papaya
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Thunderbird Bar Pineapple + Mango + Papaya Nutrition Facts
Thunderbird Bar in Detroit, MI - Cashew + Fig + Carrot
Thunderbird Bar in Detroit, MI – Cashew + Fig + Carrot
Thunderbird Bars - Pineapple + Mango + Papaya in Eastern Market, Detroit, MI
Thunderbird Bars – Pineapple + Mango + Papaya in Eastern Market, Detroit, MI
Thunderbird Bars - Cacao + Hemp + Walnut
Thunderbird Bars – Cacao + Hemp + Walnut in Eastern Market, Detroit, MI
Two of the Thunderbird Bars flavors available for children
Two of the Thunderbird Bars flavors available for children

Thunderbird Bars also encourages your little ones to eat healthy and they offer four flavors for kids, also known as Thunderkids.

  • Fruit Punch
  • Apple Pie
  • Peanut Butter & Jelly
  • Chocolate Chip Cookie

I love when a healthy brand of food makes kid-friendly products. I try my best to avoid giving my daughter junk. When I give her a Thunderbird Bar as a snack I feel good about it. Chloe also really does enjoy eating these. They are naturally sweet and satisfy a sweet tooth craving in a more healthy approach. These bars will be a great thing to pack for her daily snack during school when she goes back.

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Thunderbird Bar For Kids in Detroit, MI

Want to learn more about Thunderbird Bars?

Want to try a variety pack of Thunderbird Bars? Find them on Amazon:


 

Learn more about how I got inspired by the cacao in Thunderbird Bars and created a healthy smoothie bow. READ HERE.

Hope you enjoyed this Thunderbird Bar review! What Thunderbird Bar flavor interests you the most? Leave me a comment and let me know which one you will try out first!

Please join my Facebook Group Give It A Whirl Girl so you can participate in the weekly Tried It Out Tuesday challenge.

 


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Cacao, Coconut, Granola, and Collagen Smoothie Bowl – RECIPE – Let’s Talk About Cacao!

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In this post I will discuss how I made a collagen smoothie bowl with cacao, coconut, and granola. Hope you enjoy!

One of my favorite Thunderbird Bars is the Cacao + Hemp + Walnut. I am a sucker for anything chocolate and this bar wins me over big time! This bar is paleo and vegan friendly. Thunderbird Bar does not mess around with any crap ingredients. What you get in a Thunderbird Bar is REAL FOOD.

I will tell you the ingredients so you can see for yourself:

  • Dates
  • Hemp seeds
  • Walnuts
  • Coconut shreds
  • Cacao
  • Cacao nibs
  • Chia seeds
  • Mint
  • and Himalayan sea salt

But how on Earth can something like chocolate be good for you? Chocolate gets a bad reputation often and gets classified as junk food. If you consume chocolate in it’s purest form it is surprisingly great for you!

I am going to talk about the health benefits now:

  • Cacao is chock full of antioxidants. Antioxidants combat cancer invasion and can be used as a preventative measure of cancer. It can help prevent a decline in the aging process.
  • Cacao is an iron powerhouse. Of all the plants in the universe, cacao has the most iron. If you are anemic cacao can be used to boost iron intake.
  • Cacao is high in magnesium
  • Cacao is high in calcium (more than cow’s milk!)
  • Cacao is known to be a mood elevator and can help lift you out of a bad day
  • Cacao has fiber. The brand that I used has 2g of fiber per tablespoon.
  • Cacao is free of sugar!
  • Cacao contains vitamin C. The cacao that I had has 10% of your daily value.

Continue reading “Cacao, Coconut, Granola, and Collagen Smoothie Bowl – RECIPE – Let’s Talk About Cacao!”

Paleo & Vegan No-Bake White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake – How I Made It

On the weekends I love to have my biggest cooking days. There is always a day thrown in there where we go out to a restaurant but most of my bigger dinners are reserved for weekends. Sunday kicked off with some healthy dessert making in the kitchen. I had a craving for something white chocolate & raspberry so I made a No-Bake White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake. I absolutely love making any kind of dessert but for me, paleo is my favorite kind to whip up because it is a fairly new concept for me. I am trying my best to get a grasp on paleo and gluten-free baking & cooking. Every day is a learning experience in the kitchen. Today I am going to talk about my experience and my process of making the cheesecake that I created yesterday.

Give It A Whirl Girl in the kitchen with fresh raspberries for cheesecake!
Give It A Whirl Girl in the kitchen with fresh raspberries for cheesecake!

I have made some paleo cheesecakes in the past and I was a huge fan of the result. This white chocolate raspberry one turned out the be the simplest one yet. A paleo cheesecake is gluten-free and dairy-free. This one was also considered vegan because no animal products were used at all. The great thing about these cheesecakes is that they are no-bake. But that doesn’t mean “no wait”. Once the ingredients are in a springform pan they need to set for at least a few hours in the refrigerator.

This cheesecake came out so silky and smooth. White chocolate and raspberry flavored anything is a weakness of mine. I absolutely love that combination of flavors. Whoever originally came up with the idea of marrying those two flavors is deserving of a giant trophy or give them a medal!

For inspo, I used this recipe from Prettypies.com but it was modified greatly. I am putting the link here so if you would like to create something like this, it was a great recipe with modifications. So shoutout to Pretty Pies for the inspiration!

A gluten-free crust is made out of ground up nuts. You use coconut oil and maple syrup as a binder. You need a springform pan for this. Her recipe suggests a 7-inch springform pan and I only had a 9-inch pan. My cheesecake would have been a bit taller if I had the smaller pan (mine was a bit flat). I used a combination of almonds and cashews. If you ever opt for a crust like this I suggest soaking your nuts (yeah that sounds funny) so they can soften up and be ground up finely in the food processor. I think that many different types of nuts would work well for a crust but in a paleo cheesecake, it is typically raw cashews. In the future, I want to try a cashew & macadamia nut combo.

Gluten-free crust (& paleo) for a White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake
Gluten-free crust (& paleo) for a White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake Made with ground almonds and cashews

For the “white chocolate” part of this cheesecake you make your own chocolate. White chocolate always contains dairy and dairy is a no-no with a paleo diet. So in order to solve this you melt down some cacao butter and use that as white chocolate. I love Navitas Organics Cacao Butter and use that as my brand of choice. Cacao butter is chocolate in its purest form. I warmed up some fresh raspberries in my cacao butter so I could infuse the white chocolate with fruit flavor. The recipe called for 1/2 cup of cacao butter and I used a bit more of that and used everything that was remaining in my bag, probably around 3/4 of a cup.

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Navitas Organics Cacao Butter Melting w/ fresh raspberries
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Navitas Organics Cacao Butter

Once your cacao butter is warmed up and melted you add it to a food processor with your soaked cashews. It is very important that these are raw cashews and free of any added salt. Nobody wants a salty white chocolate raspberry cheesecake. The recipe called for some shredded zucchini but I avoided that completely and just used fresh raspberries to bulk up the filling.

Paleo also means no added refined sugars. So with paleo, you have some options for adding that desired sweetness. In this case, you use maple syrup. Just to clarify too, maple syrup is not some kind of Aunt Jemima pancake syrup, it has to be pure maple syrup straight from the tree. You can find some here by Now Foods.

When you add a bit of lemon juice to this cashew mixture it really does give you a taste of cheesecake. It is truly remarkable how you can make a healthier cheesecake using some simple, natural ingredients.

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White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake
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White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake w/ fresh raspberries on top

At this point, everything was all put together in my springform pan and I topped it with fresh raspberries. I allowed it to set in the fridge for about 3 hours or so. While the cheesecake was setting I placed my KitchenAid stand mixer bowl in the freezer so it could get super cold. Next up on the to-do list was my vegan & paleo whipped cream! If you want to try your hand at making whipped cream like this get yourself a can of coconut cream and let it sit in the fridge overnight. I use the Thai Kitchen brand of coconut cream in my recipes.

Once your cheesecake has chilled a bit you can prepare the whipped cream. There is no added sugar in this whipped cream. I have been known in the past, though, to sweeten with a bit of coconut sugar but that is completely optional. To make this you simply take all of the fatty coconut off the top of the water that is in the can and place it in the mixing bowl with a whisk attachment. Very important~ do not allow ANY water from the can in your mixture. I still have a hard time with this and am perfecting my whipped cream. The more water you have in there, the less it will whip up nice and fluffy. I whisk this up at a high speed for a few minutes.

Thai Kitchen Coconut Cream for vegan and paleo whipped cream

Ok almost time to eat! BUT it still needed the whipped cream added to the top. I used a Wilton Dessert Decorator to put my whipped cream in place. Just choose a tip for the pump and simply press down on the plunger to put your dollops on. Easy peasy!

Paleo & Vegan White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake
Paleo & Vegan No-Bake White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake
Paleo & Vegan No-Bake White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake
Paleo & Vegan No-Bake White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake

I was so eager to find out how all of this tasted. I took my first bite and I was instantly in love with this dessert… omg so good! Major plus over here is that hubby doesn’t like raspberries or white chocolate and my daughter is away on vacation so I get this dessert all to my sweet self!

Did you make anything new and exciting in the kitchen this past weekend? Leave me a comment and let me know. I would love to hear from you!

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Sacred Springs Kombucha REVIEW – Take A Sip! Your Gut Will Thank You

Today I would like to introduce you to a line of kombucha that was birthed in my home state of Michigan. This kombucha is brought to you by Sacred Springs. I actually ordered all five flavors from Shipt but one flavor was out of stock… boo! I will be honest here, I am a huge sucker for labeling and packaging. If a label draws me in enough I will purchase that product and bring it home with me. I have had my eye on this kombucha for awhile, particularly the Root Of Life bottle with the bearded man. Maybe his eyes mesmerized me? Whatever it was, it worked!

Sacred Springs Kombucha
Sacred Springs Kombucha

First things first, what is kombucha and why you should try it

Chances are you have heard about kombucha by now. It seems to be all the rage these days in the world of healthy living. Kombucha is a fermented tea (with sugar) that is full of good bacteria for your gut and probiotics. This can all strengthen your immune system, give you energy and focus, and also give you a boost in overall health.

When I first tried kombucha I will always remember it. I had no idea what it was when I bought it. It was GT’S Raspberry Chia and I bought it at Whole Foods. I was sitting out on the patio with my daughter and we gave it a whirl. At first, I was totally turned off by the vinegar-like taste. I just could not drink it. I do believe that like many things in life, kombucha is an acquired taste. I believe that once you get through your first couple of bottles and begin to experience all of the wonderful health benefits, you will be craving a bottle daily. That’s where I’m at right now!

Kalmbucha

The first flavor that I tried out was the one with holy basil. This one is called Kalmbucha. This one was very light tasting and easy to drink for me. There are a lot of kombucha haters out there (I know because I used to be one) and I feel that anyone could enjoy this particular flavor. Holy basil is known to bring balance to your life and even you out. It truly did have a calming effect that swept over me.

Sacred Springs Kalmbucha kombucha
Sacred Springs Kalmbucha kombucha (Holy Basil)

Flower of Life

The second kombucha that I went for was the Flower Of Life. This bottle has a beautiful red hue to it, making it somewhat irresistible to me. This drink has a beautiful mix of the following flavors: jasmine flowers, hibiscus, rose hips, elderflowers and elderberries. This one can be best described as a little sweet and a little sour. So if you are into sweet & sour this one might be your jam! I really enjoyed this flavor and I felt great after drinking it.

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Flower of Life (jasmine, elder flowers, and rosehips) by Sacred Springs Kombucha

Root of Life

The third one that I consumed was called Root of Life and this is the one with the label that I was head over heels in love with. This one is infused with a heavy taste of beets and also a blend of ginger and turmeric. When they created this flavor it was akin to winning the lottery. The combination of flavors is just BAM!! If you love beets as much as I do you will really enjoy drinking this one. This one had a ton of fizz to it too, which I love! That’s when I know I have a potent kombucha.

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Root of Life (beets, ginger, and turmeric) by Sacred Springs Kombucha

Tzintzer Trifecta

This kombucha is all about the ginger. Ginger is one of those elements that definitely has a zing to it. Ginger is known to have anti-inflammatory properties, antioxidants, can even out blood sugar, promote weight loss, and is also hydrating. I am a big fan of ginger so this flavor won me over.

Tzintzer Trifecta (ginger) by Sacred Springs Kombucha

Use the handy store locator to find out where you can grab each and every one of these! CLICK HERE to find out where you need to go. If you are in Michigan or Ohio you are in luck because that is where Sacred Springs can be found. Hopefully, in the future, this can be found nationwide because I feel that everyone should get on board with this brand.

Have you ever tried kombucha? What are your thoughts on it? Leave me a comment and let me know what is on your mind when you hear the word, “KOMBUCHA”.

 


Paleo Balsamic Steak With Primal Kitchen – Simplicity Is Often Best When It Comes To Steak

I had two New York strip steaks to cook yesterday. I often opt for a garlic herbed ghee when cooking up my steaks but I wanted to mix things up a bit last night and try something different. I have been trying out many of the flavors of Primal Kitchen dressings/marinades that I ordered recently and I am completely and totally satisfied with their quality. I had Primal Kitchen Balsamic Marinade and that is exactly what my steaks ended up marinating in.

Balsamic Steak w/ Primal Kitchen Foods Balsamic Dressing/Marinade and Roasted Balsamic Asparagus
Balsamic Steak w/ Primal Kitchen Foods Balsamic Dressing/Marinade and Roasted Balsamic Asparagus

Last night I wanted to do something simple with my steak that would still result in a juicy piece of meat and I opted for the Primal Kitchen Balasmic. This is an avocado oil based dressing that only uses real food ingredients and no BS whatsoever. This is paleo-friendly, gluten-free, and does not contain any added sugars. Many Primal Kitchen items are also Whole 30 friendly but this particular one is not, due to the added honey.

As you can see in the photo below I did not have too many ingredients at all. I had the Balsamic, some Heavenly Organics Acacia Honey, and not shown was the Primal Kitchen Extra Virgin Avocado Oil, and the salt & pepper. That is all I worked with~ 5 simple ingredients.

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I preheated the oven for my asparagus to 425 degrees and lined a sheet pan with foil. I took some of the Balsamic and a bit of the honey and mixed it together. I then made sure that all of the asparagus was doused in this mixture. It took about 15 minutes to roast the asparagus. It came out with a little bit of sweetness from the honey, which I thought was great. The Balsamic was not too overpowering with the veggie.

Primal Kitchen Balsamic Dressing/Marinade
Primal Kitchen Balsamic Dressing/Marinade
Primal Kitchen Balsamic Dressing/Marinade
Primal Kitchen Balsamic Dressing/Marinade

I used my Lodge Cast Iron Grill Pan to cook the steak, as I usually do. That pan is by far my favorite way to cook a steak. I no longer use my grill outdoors for steak. This pan will produce one hell of a juicy and tender steak. I poured just a bit of avocado oil in the pan and warmed it up. Once the grill was warm I threw the steaks on. Don’t you just love that sizzling sound when your meat is cooking on the grill? Music to my ears. I poured a bit of the marinade on the steaks while they were cooking. Gosh the smell of the Balsamic paired with the meat was an incredible smell. Hubby even remarked and said, “something smells good in the kitchen”.

So there you have it… a big juicy piece of medium-rare balsamic steak and roasted balsamic asparagus. Clean Plate for Joe and I and the steak was so perfectly cooked I could have probably eaten half of another one.

Balsamic Steak w/ Primal Kitchen Foods Balsamic Dressing/Marinade and Roasted Balsamic Asparagus

How do you like to prepare your steak? What is your secret to a juicy, tender steak? Leave me a comment and let me know.

 

You can find Primal Kitchen items in their online store and save with coupon code: GIVEITAWHIRL10

or….

Want to give the Balsamic Primal Kitchen dressing/marinade a whirl? You can find it on Amazon:

You can also treat yourself to a Lodge Cast Iron Grill Pan on Amazon:

Find out more about Primal Eating with the Primal Blueprint book available on Amazon:

 

 

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My Visit To Menchie’s – REVIEW – Froyo Is Always The Best Medicine

Menchie’s is nothing new to me. This serve-yourself frozen yogurt bar has been a family favorite dessert destination spot for years now. The great thing about Menchie’s is that each and every trip here can be a new experience. There is always a wide variety of frozen yogurt flavors to choose from, as well as sorbets. Menchie’s also often introduces new flavors to try to keep things exciting. We go to Menchie’s to celebrate. We go to Menchie’s to drown our sorrows on a bad day. I always joke around about Menchie’s being the best medicine and a remedy to take your day to better heights. When I’m stuffing my face with froyo I don’t have a care in the world. This Menchie’s review will inform you of everything you need to know about this unique frozen yogurt shop!

Menchies Heritage Village in Warren, MI

My Menchie’s Review & everything you need to know!

Serve Yourself At Menchie’s

Upon walking in you see a serve yourself frozen yogurt and topping area. How neat! I have always had a spot in my heart for frozen yogurt. I used to get so excited when my mom took us to TCBY and we could choose 3 different toppings for a parfait. You, however, did not have the opportunity to serve yourself there, somebody else took care of you. Menchie’s has a help yourself frozen yogurt bar and a serve yourself topping bar where all your wildest dessert dreams can become a reality. You can build and create anything your heart desires. I love this help-yourself approach to frozen yogurt. It is a gratifying experience to walk into a place like this and create your own little (or big) cup of edible art.

Get creative at Menchie’s

At Menchie’s your creation is completely and totally up to you! The froyo is in your hands. Your froyo creation is sold by weight. So if you go wild and crazy with the froyo and the toppings be prepared to pay a hefty amount for that epic creation of yours.

Fun flavors!

You can scope out all of the flavors that Menchie’s has available by clicking THIS LINK. Please note that not all flavors will be available at your location. Call your local store up if you want to inquire about what flavors they have available.

My local Menchie’s has seven self-serve froyo stations and each station has two flavors. You can help yourself or swirl both flavors together. This means that there are usually 14 different flavors available. One of my usual go-tos is the Takes The Cake Batter. The Rich ‘n” Nutty Pistachio is another favorite. The pistachio always gives me flashbacks of the pistachio pudding that my grandma used to make with me and my sister.

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Menchies Heritage Village in Warren, MI
Menchies Heritage Village in Warren, MI – Variety of frozen yogurts to choose from

Menchie’s toppings… the fun part!

My favorite part of visiting Menchie’s is dressing up my froyo with all of the available toppings. Decisions! Decisions! Only so much can fit into the cup so you have to be a little choosy with what you go with. Menchie’s has the available toppings menu online. Please note with this as well,  not all toppings will be available at every Menchie’s location. I didn’t see the Bursting Boba toppings available yesterday and those are one of Chloe’s favorites. She usually builds a fruity sorbet cup and goes with colorful toppings such as boba and gummy candies.

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Menchies Heritage Village in Warren, MI – Toppings bar
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Menchies Heritage Village in Warren, MI – Toppings bar
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Menchies Heritage Village in Warren, MI -Toppings bar
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Menchies Heritage Village in Warren, MI – Fresh fruit at the toppings bar
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Menchies Heritage Village in Warren, MI – Toppings bar (whipped cream, cherries, cheesecake, cookie dough, brownie, etc)

Insider tips:

  • Do not go too crazy with different flavors and toppings. Think things through and really think to yourself, “is this going to taste good?” If your Menchie’s does not taste good, you are probably to blame.
  • They charge by weight so if you want to keep it on the cheap side do not out an enormous amount of froyo in your cup. Also, stick to light toppings like candy sprinkles, whipped cream, etc.
  • They have a lot of gummy candy toppings to choose from but keep in mind that your froyo is FROZEN yogurt so once that gummy candy sits there on top of your creation for a bit it does tend to get on the hard side, as opposed to soft like a gummy candy should be.
  • I forgot to get a photo of the liquid toppings available like marshmallow and hot fudge. It is a good idea to put this on your froyo BEFORE the toppings.
  • Menchie’s does offer a rewards program, known as My Smileage, so you can save on frozen yogurt once you reach a certain amount of money spent. Once you reach 50 Smiles (spend $50) you get a $5 reward. Just for signing up they start your account with 25 Smiles.
  • Don’t forget Menchie’s for your next celebration. They do offer frozen yogurt cakes!

YOU MIGHT ALSO ENJOY:

Rocket Fizz – Soda Pop & Candy Shop REVIEW


Give It A Whirl Girl with her Menchie's Froyo Creation

 

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How can Menchie’s improve?

  • Orange Leaf is a froyo competitor and they offer little paper dividers for your cup so different flavors and prevented from blending together.
  • Offer breakfast flavors as a regular option. Last year Orange Leaf offered a line of breakfast flavored froyo like pancakes w/ syrup, Fruity Pebbles, etc. The breakfast flavors are my favorite. Keeping these flavors as a permanent offering would be fabulous. I would even visit in the morning for a breakfast treat if those flavors were always available.
  • Rearrange the stations just a bit. The liquid topping area is at the end of the self-serve area. I think it just makes sense to put hot fudge, etc. on top of your froyo BEFORE you put the cute little toppings on. When you put this on last it smothers your creation.

Final thoughts

I hope my Menchie’s review has opened your eyes about this unique place to visit. The possibilities really truly are endless! You can get creative at Menchie’s with the HUGE toppings bar that they have. There is a wide variety of toppings and sauces for your frozen yogurt creation. It is also a very family-friendly place. Your children will love Menchies… I guarantee it!


Want to learn more about Menchie’s?


Have you ever been to Menchie’s? What does your favorite cup of froyo look like? Leave me a comment and let me know, don’t be shy!

If you have never visited this place will this Menchie’s review inspire you to go? I sure hope so and I hope you love your first experience there. I was hooked from my first visit!


MENCHIE’S LOCATION (Heritage Village – Warren, MI)

29367 Mound Road

Warren, MI 48092

MENCHIE’S HOURS (Heritage Village – Warren, MI)

Mon-Sun: 12 PM-10 PM


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New York Deli In St Clair Shores – Restaurant Review

For me, Fridays have always been about seafood and fish. There is just something about getting a tasty fish dinner on a Friday. Technically it wasn’t dinner today, but a late lunch at New York Deli in St. Clair Shores, MI. My main focus of this blog is about trying out new things. New York Deli is not new for me. My family and I are regulars here. I am going to go and assume that this restaurant has a lot of regulars because the delicious food keeps bringing them back. Hmmm or could it be all about the pickles? Maybe the corned beef? The Reubens? Let’s investigate! Seriously though, if you have been living in the area of this restaurant and have not yet visited you are the one missing out!

New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI

All about New York Deli St. Clair Shores

You want to know what I love about this place? It is the only restaurant that I have ever dined at that greets you with a bowl of juicy pickles. Sometimes if you polish off that bowl of pickles your nice waitress will ask you if you want more. The obvious answer is always YES!

The New York Deli has a great menu with really decent prices. They offer a wide variety of items and have something for everyone on their menu. My husband, Joe, is often a burger guy and I am an entree gal. Since it was Friday and I was craving fish I had to go with my usual~ baked cod with steamed broccoli on the side.  Joe had a hardcore craving for a burger today so he went with a cheeseburger.

I have a few photos down below of just some of their offerings. There are plenty more than shown here. You can view their entire menu HERE. They have soups, salads, sandwiches (including build-your-own deli sandwiches), burgers, pita & wraps, entrees, and a section with Italian foods. I have never dined here for breakfast but I did see that they have some breakfast foods available here. I will have to come early someday and explore that part of the menu more.

New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI - You always get started with pickles!
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI – You always get started with pickles!
New-York-Deli-N-Restaurant - St Clair Shores, MI - Menu
New-York-Deli-N-Restaurant – St Clair Shores, MI – Menu
New-York-Deli-N-Restaurant - St Clair Shores, MI - Menu
New-York-Deli-N-Restaurant – St Clair Shores, MI – Menu
New-York-Deli-N-Restaurant - St Clair Shores, MI - Menu
New-York-Deli-N-Restaurant – St Clair Shores, MI – Menu

New York Deli has a daily special menu available. They offer up six varieties of soups and a wide array of dessert offerings. Personally, for me, I am all about that Seafood Chowder. The Seafood Chowder is fully stocked with all the seafood you can fill into a soup cup. Cup runneth over! Check out the images below. They frequently serve overflowing cups of soup, nothing to complain about there, the more the merrier!

New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI Daily specials for Friday
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI - Seafood Chowder
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI – Seafood Chowder
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI - Seafood Chowder
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI – Seafood Chowder

I often like to venture out and try new things but sometimes things are just so damn good you gotta keep coming back for more. That is exactly what I do at New York Deli. Their Baked Cod dinner is cooked and seasoned to perfection. It is served with a side of potatoes but I try to do low-carb so I swap the potato out for a vegetable, in this case, broccoli. The cod is nice and meaty fish. It never has that putrid fishy taste that some restaurant fish dinners serve up. It is flaky fish and goes great with a little tartar sauce and a whole lot of fresh lemon juice.

New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI - Baked Cod
New York Deli in St Clair Shores, MI – Baked Cod

Joe was very pleased with his cheeseburger and he said it really hit the spot for him. I gotta say, it did look pretty fine! I could see the cheese just oozing around and it had all of the right fixings on it. He did manage to join the Clean Plate Club and pack it all in. It solved the hunger crisis that he was having.

Burger & Fries at New York Deli St Clair Shores
Burger & Fries at New York Deli

We did not order dessert, though it did sound tempting. We might go out later for a frozen treat. New York Deli has a considerably good amount of desserts to choose from: cakes (including Bumpy Cake), pies, cheesecake, rice pudding, and ice-cream.

All in all, we were very gratified by our delectable meals at New York Deli. My daughter is away on vacation now but she also really does enjoy dining there with us too. I forgot to mention above that they do have a children’s menu. I do wish the children’s menu had some more choices available, that might be my only slight complaint but it seems that is the case with most restaurants.

 

Question Time! Have you ever been to the New York Deli and what do you enjoy there? They are famous for their Corned Beef dinner and their Reubens and I have tried both. I can attest that they are indeed satisfying.

 

If you haven’t yet tried out the New York Deli and you decide to try it I really hope that you enjoy it as much as me and my family do!

 

Want to give New York Deli a whirl?

New York Deli Location


St Clair Shores

25008 Little Mack, St. Clair Shores, MI 48080

Visit them on Facebook

CLICK HERE


Clinton Township

40700 Garfield Rd., Clinton Township, MI 48038

Visit them on Facebook

CLICK HERE


Hope you enjoyed my review of the New York Deli! Feel free to share this post.

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Gourmet Candy For The Sweet Tooth Afficonado – Friday Faves

Nordstrom is chock full of gourmet candy that you can treat yourself to or gift to a deserving friend. I truly do believe that these items here would make incredible gifts for family and friends that would be unforgettable and memorable. I curated this list of gourmet candies that are my fave at the moment. Hope you enjoy. It was difficult to choose only ten items for this list because everything in their candy shop looks fascinating. You might need to wipe drool off your screen once you reach the end of this list! Every bit of gourmet candy that Nordstrom sells is top-notch food. You won’t be let down!

Rose 3 Piece Candy Bento Box by Sugarfina – This three piece set contains three different types of rose gummi candies.

Sugarfina Rose 3 Piece Gift Set
Sugarfina Rose 3 Piece Gift Set (gummy candies)

Pop The Champagne Candy Gift Set by Sugarfina – This 3 piece champagne-flavored gummi bear set also included two stunning champagne flutes. Treat yourself when it’s time to celebrate something incredible! This would also be a perfect gift for a bride and groom. This set sure makes for a sweet celebration in style!

Pop The Champagne Candy Gift Set by Sugarfina
Pop The Champagne Candy Gift Set by Sugarfina

Dylan’s Candy – Bar Gummy Bear Bank – Who doesn’t love gummy bears? How can you not? These candies will always be reminiscent of my childhood.

dylans-gummy-bear-banl.jpg
Dylan’s Candy Bar – Gummy Bear Bank

Dylan’s Candy Bar – Sour Belts Tackle Box – Wowza! Check out the flavors in this fabulous tackle box: Sour Rainbow, Sour Green Apple, Watermelon, Berry Blue, Pink Lemonade, Cotton Candy and Wild Cherry. I have a major weakness for any kind of sour candy over here, and I would just be over the moon thrilled to explore the candies in this gift set.

Dylan's Candy Bar - Tackle Box of Gummy Belts
Dylan’s Candy Bar – Tackle Box of Gummy Belts

Lolli and Pops Dessert Signature Bar Set – Gimme gimme gimme! All of these flavors sound amazeballs! Prepare to be amazed by: Red Velvet, Gimme S’more, Jalapeño Peanut, Dark Chocolate, and Milk Chocolate flavors.

lolli-and-pops-dessert-signature-bar-set.jpg
Lolli And Pops Dessert Signature Bar Set

Charbonnel et Walker Chocolate Truffles In A Heart-Shaped Box – They had me at mouthwatering champagne truffles! Be still my heart!

chocolate-truffles-in-heart-shaped-gift-box.jpg
Chocolate Truffles in Heart Shaped Gift Box CHARBONNEL ET WALKER

Marie Antoinette Cookie Bites by Stud Buckets – This bucket is overflowing with confetti-colored birthday cake flavored cookies. Non nom nom!

marie-antoinette-stud-bucket-cookies.jpg
Marie Antoinette Cookie Bites STUD BUCKETS

Discovery Collection 12 Piece Chocolate Gift Set by Neuhaus – I have had the pleasure of trying this brand of chocolates before and they are absolutely divine. This set includes 12 assorted pralines in white, milk and dark chocolate.

Discovery Collection 12-Piece Chocolate Gift Set by Neuhaus
Discovery Collection 12-Piece Chocolate Gift Set by Neuhaus

Chocolate Mint Meltaways by Chicago Classic Confections – Mint and chocolate will always be a classic combo. When chocolate and mint get married it is true bliss.

Chocolate Mint Meltaways CHICAGO CLASSIC CONFECTIONS
Chocolate Mint Meltaways CHICAGO CLASSIC CONFECTIONS

Hologram Whole Bean Coffee Blend by Counter Culture Coffee – Ok well this is not candy but it is still in the food/drink category. The word “Hologram’ really sucks me into wanting to try out this coffee. To me, it just sounds magical and a great way to start the day. This coffee had a fruity and chocolatey taste to it and that just fascinates me.

Hologram Whole Bean Coffee Blend COUNTER CULTURE COFFEE

 

All of these gourmet foods can be found at Nordstrom. You can click the links to go directly to the items so you can throw them in your shopping cart.

TGIF! What will you be treating yourself to this week? You earned it, so you should totally go for it! Leave me a comment here and tell me what catches your eye the most from this list.

 

 

DISCLAIMER: THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. I DO RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION IF ITEMS ARE PURCHASED THROUGH THESE LINKS. THIS HELPS MAKE FOR A BETTER BLOG EXPERIENCE FOR ALL OF MY READERS. ALL PROCEEDS GO TOWARDS MAKING IMPROVEMENTS ON THIS BLOG.

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I Tried The Gourmet Candy From Sugarfina Cereal Collection & Here Are My Thoughts – Sweets For The Sweet!

I have been virtually drooling all over the line of Sugarfina items that I have seen online for years now. The reason I didn’t get a chance to try it out until now? Let’s be honest the price of this candy is astronomical. I was blessed with a nice big fat Nordstrom gift card recently so that I how I ended up finally splurging on Sugarfina. I went with the Sugarfina Cereal Collection Favorites Candy Gift Set. The price of this gift set is going to set you back $34.90 but if it makes your taste buds jump for joy and give you a foodgasm the price tag just might be worth it.

Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set

It felt like Xmas morning when the delivery man brought this package to me. I opened up the box. It was actually packed quite well to ensure that it wouldn’t arrive broken. But much to my surprise both bars were snapped in half when I took them out of their pretty packaging. You can see below in the photos what I mean. Yes, I was quite sad and I did end up calling up Nordstrom customer service. The customer service agent that I spoke to was super helpful with my dilemma that I had reported and he told me that he would send out another package to me, this time hopefully the bars would be in a beautiful and intact state. I don’t blame Nordstrom and I don’t blame Sugarfina for this mishap. I blame UPS. They throw packages onto porches without a thought in the world that maybe, just maybe there is something delicate and fragile contained in the box.

Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set (Froot Loops Bar)
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set (Lucky Charms Bar)

Despite the broken bars I still felt pretty freaking awesome to have this gorgeous candy in my possession. To me, it is pure eye-candy CANDY! Just look at it. The gift set included more than just the two candy bars (Froot Loops bar and a Lucky Charms bar). The set also came with little ball-shaped candies~ Fruity Loops and Cinnamon Crunchies. The Fruity Loops definitely did remind me of the colorful & sugary cereal Froot Loops. The Cinnamon Crunchies were like eating Cinnamon Toast Crunch, only better.

Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set
Cereal Collection Favorites Candy Gift Set

After giving all the candies a whirl I see why they are considered gourmet. The taste of each candy was exquisite and divine. The taste transported me to some kind of weird state of food euphoria!

Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set Fruity Cereal Bar
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set Fruity Cereal Bar
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set Fruity Loops
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set Fruit Loops Canmdy
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set
Sugarfina Cereal Collection Gift Set

So what’s next for me with Sugarfina?

Have you ever seen the Champagne Bears that Sugarfina has available? Going out on a limb here and going to say that I bet these are the greatest gummy bears around. I can’t even possibly begin to imagine how divine these must taste! Yes these are definitely on my wishlist of indulgent candies that I want to give a whirl!

Champagne Bears by Sugarfina
Champagne Bears by Sugarfina

Sugarfina also has this champagne set available for when I really want to splurge! This set contains 3 different kinds of champagne flavored candies!

champagne-bears-gift-set.jpg
Set of 6 Champagne Lovers’ Delight Candy Boxes

Have you ever tried Sugarfina? What were your thoughts? Click through this LINK HERE and tell me what you would want to get for yourself. All of their candy is just gorgeous!

DISCLAIMER: THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. I DO RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION IF ITEMS ARE PURCHASED THROUGH THESE LINKS. THIS HELPS MAKE FOR A BETTER BLOG EXPERIENCE FOR ALL OF MY READERS. ALL PROCEEDS GO TOWARDS MAKING IMPROVEMENTS ON THIS BLOG.

 

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Lemon Turmeric Chicken With Primal Kitchen Foods – Simple, Easy, and Delicious & A Primal Kitchen Coupon!

Dinner does not get much easier than this folks! Last night I served up a chicken breast marinated in Primal Kitchen Foods Lemon & Turmeric Dressing/Marinade. This was my second marinade by Primal Kitchen that I tried. I just recently tried the Italian (click here to read more) on a chicken dish a couple nights ago and it was fab! Their dressing/marinades give your food an amazing infusion of flavor. We were big fans of the Primal Kitchen Lemon Turmeric. Keep on reading to learn more about this wonderful Lemon Turmeric marinade and how you can save with my special Primal Kitchen coupon code!

Simple, Easy, and Delicious Lemon Turmeric Chicken With Primal Kitchen Foods served with roasted fingerling potatoes
Simple, Easy, and Delicious Lemon Turmeric Chicken With Primal Kitchen Foods served with roasted fingerling potatoes
Primal Kitchen California Extra Virgin Avocado Oil and petite fingerling potatoes
Primal Kitchen California Extra Virgin Avocado Oil and petite fingerling potatoes
Primal Kitchen Foods Lemon Turmeric Dressing/Marinade with chicken breast
Primal Kitchen Foods Lemon Turmeric Dressing/Marinade with chicken breast

And you want to know the best part? It is REAL FOOD. No weird ingredients, just straight up REAL FOOD. With Primal Kitchen Foods you are getting a quality product. Many dressings are Whole 30, paleo, and keto friendly as well. This particular dressing is suitable for all of those diets. This dressing/marinade is free of gluten, soy, sugar, dairy, sugar, canola, sunflower & safflower oils, and this dressing is also Non-GMO-Project Verified and will fit in perfectly to your primal eating lifestyle.

Organic apple cider vinegar, revitalizing organic turmeric, and organic herbs give this dressing a deliciously diverse flavor profile.

Once the chicken had marinated in the Primal Kitchen Lemon Turmeric marinade for a few hours it was time to get funky in the kitchen. I grabbed my saute pan, splashed a bit of avocado oil in there, and then placed my chicken in there with some minced garlic and chopped shallots. Easy peasy!

While my chicken was cooking I had some purple and gold petite fingerling potatoes roasting away in the over. It was 90 degrees today so turning on a hot oven is no fun but so worth it. The potatoes were simple to prepare. I placed them in a bowl, drizzled some Primal Kitchen California Extra Virgin Avocado Oil on there, a good shake of garlic powder, a dash of salt & pepper, and a squeeze of fresh lemon. The potatoes were delish and I have no regrets but they, unfortunately, are not paleo friendly. The chicken, however, is paleo.


Simple, Easy, and Delicious Lemon Turmeric Chicken With Primal Kitchen Foods served with roasted fingerling potatoes
Simple, Easy, and Delicious Lemon Turmeric Chicken With Primal Kitchen Foods served with roasted fingerling potatoes

This was a pretty effortless dinner with quite an astonishing result. The flavor of the lemon turmeric chicken was impeccable and the potatoes were roasted to perfection. Ahhhhh even a novice cook could construct this healthy, wholesome dish. No excuses for boring, lame dinners when you have Primal Kitchen Foods marinades on hand.

 

Question Time!

Check out all of the dressings/ marinades at Primal Kitchen and leave me a comment telling me which one you will try first and what you will create with it.

Primal Kitchen haul of healthy foods
Primal Kitchen haul of healthy foods

 

Check out these other posts at Give It A Whirl Girl!

Primal Kitchen Greek Strip Steaks, Applegate Sunday Bacon Wrapped Rainbow Carrots, and Paleo Butternut Squash Soup - How I Created This Sunday Dinner

Paleo Vegetable Beef Soup RECIPE by Give IT A Whirl Girl - Slow-Cooker, Gluten-Free

 

Click HERE to shop at Primal Kitchen.

Save 10% OFF at Primal Kitchen Foods with my Primal Kitchen coupon code: GIVEITAWHIRL10

 

Primal Kitchen Coupon GIVEITAWHIRL10 - Save on dressings, marinades, condiments, cooking oils, and more!

Want to learn more about the benefits of turmeric?
Read more about turmeric benefits HERE.

 

PIN FOR LATER

Lemon Turmeric Primal Kitchen Chicken and a Primal Kitchen Coupon With Give It A Whirl Girl
Lemon Turmeric Primal Kitchen Chicken and a Primal Kitchen Coupon With Give It A Whirl Girl

 


 


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Homemade Alfredo Sauce With Garlic & Lemon Served With Gluten-Free Sweet Potato Noodles – Awesome Sauce With Chef Shamy

Sometimes there is a dinner so phenomenal I just have to share. My husband and I had an appetite for some Fettuccine Alfredo. That is a dish that I used to make often and I have made it so much that I now have my sauce totally perfected. My secret to a great cheesy sauce like this is to use quality ingredients and you gotta have some fresh lemon juice and red pepper flakes. Homemade Alfredo sauce just can not be beat! Keep reading to learn more!

Homemade Alfredo Sauce With Garlic & Lemon Served With Gluten-Free Sweet Potato Noodles
Homemade Alfredo Sauce With Garlic & Lemon Served With Gluten-Free Sweet Potato Noodles

I have been trying to eliminate as much gluten as possible from my diet. It seems to be improving my health both mentally and physically so I am sticking to it. I have not reached a point of total elimination of gluten but I have cut down significantly. I needed a gluten-free, thick noodle to go with my alfredo. I ran into some difficulty at Kroger finding such a noodle and then I found it! I found some freshly made noodles that are made out of sweet potatoes. How perfect! I did have some fear in the back of my mind, though, that Joe would not approve. I took a leap of faith and added it to my ClickList anyway.

Now the details on the sauce. I have been going on and on lately about Chef Shamy’s gourmet butters.  I have a variety of flavors stocked in my fridge at the moment and figured my best bet was the Chef Shamy Garlic Butter with Parmesan Cheese and Basil. I can not say enough good words about this butter. Seriously guys, order some of this butter on Amazon and you will not regret it! I think that this butter really made my homemade Alfredo sauce shine. The butter gave it a marvelous flavor!

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I used about 1/4 cup of that butter in my sauce along with one pint of Horizon Organic Heavy Whipping Cream.  Once I had the butter and the heavy cream well incorporated I added a great big squeeze of my favorite minced garlic from Spice World. My knife skill are no good and I do not enjoy mincing garlic so I go the easy route with my trusty squeeze bottle. I also added in some Italian Seasonings, salt, and a good crack at a peppercorn medley. I continued warming the sauce and then very slowly added some Simple Truth Organic Parmesan Cheese.

All of my ingredients were then well integrated and I almost had the perfect sauce. What I like to do to my alfredo Sauce is use the lemon juice from a freshly squeezed lemon (no picture here but you probably know what a lemon looks like). I simmer my sauce a bit more and let that lemon juice infuse the sauce.

The Gluten-Free Sweet Potato Fettuccine noodles were simple to cook. Just boil up the water, separate them well, and drop them in. The noodles were nice and al-dente in 3 minutes. I then drained the noodles well and I mixed the sauce and noodles up in one pot to ensure that every noodle was smothered in my cheesy sauce.

I like to put black pepper and red pepper flakes on top of my pasta and serve some lemon slices as a garnish, just in case you need another squeeze of that zingy lemon.

Homemade Alfredo Sauce With Garlic & Lemon Served With Gluten-Free Sweet Potato Noodles

So how does it look? I think it looks marvelous and I’m going to give myself a pat on the back for this dish. I am pleased to say, as well, that Joe 100% approved of these sweet potato noodles. He and I both agreed that they didn’t have a bit of funkiness or weirdness to them. I am being sincere here when I say that you wouldn’t have an idea that they are gluten-free unless I told you so.

I would also love to give a shout out to Chef Shamy for hooking my fridge up with a bunch of their tasty gourmet butter. I will most definitely be experimenting more with them in the Give It A Whirl Girl Kitchen. You can find out more about Chef Shamy by clicking this nice little link HERE.

Do you have any tips or tricks on making a decent alfredo sauce? Feel free to share here and let us all in on your secrets!

Grab two tubs of Chef Shamy’s Garlic Butter on Amazon. Give it a whirl!

 

DISCLAIMER: THIS POST CONTAINS AMAZON AFFILIATE LINKS. I DO RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION IF ITEMS ARE PURCHASED THROUGH THESE LINKS. PROCEEDS FROM THE AMAZON AFFILIATE PROGRAM HELP MAKE THIS BLOG A BETTER BLOGGING EXPERIENCE FOR MY READERS.



Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Bread Mix – The Result? Smurf Bread! Tried It Out Tuesday

I am a big big fan of any of Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free products. My cupboards are stocked with several of their items. I just recently put some of the Bob’s Red Mill Wonderful Bread Mix on my Kroger Clicklist order and I am so pleased that I did. Check out that loaf of bread that I created! In all its purple glory… I call it Smurf Bread. This was a very unique loaf of bread that was bursting with blackberry and lemon flavor. What a fantastic combo! Read on to find out more about the process of baking this gluten-free loaf of bread.

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Bob’s Red Mill Wonderful Bread Mix

I created this bread by preparing the mix according to the recipe but I had to do some sort of modification to make it my own. What I did was added a whole pint of organic blackberries to the mix. This made the dough a bluish-purple color. It’s more purple than blue (I know) but I’m just going to keep it as Smurf Bread. That sounds fun to me.

Me in the Give It A Whirl Girl Kitchen KIMMY RIPLEY
Me in the Give It A Whirl Girl Kitchen

I also added in a bit of some pure almond extract to the bread mix to give it a nice almond flavor. That stuff is potent and a little bit goes a long way so I only poured in a tiny bit.

I also zested up a lemon and I tossed in some lemon zest. That is another potent thing and a little bit goes a long way with that too. I put some lemon zest on top of the loaf as well for a little more zing and zang.


The main ingredients I used to make the gluten-free Smurf Bread
The main ingredients I used to make the gluten-free Smurf Bread

I brushed the top of my bread with a butter flavored coconut oil. It is Barlean’s Butter Flavored Coconut Oil and I’m going to tell you this… that stuff is magic! This coconut oil has a magnificent buttery taste. It is a bit on the pricey side but if you are looking to give your food a nice punch of buttery goodness flavoring this stuff is sure to please!

And to finish it off I added a few sliced blackberries to the top and some sliced almonds. I figured I might as well add them since I went with almond extract in the bread. Plus I think it makes the bread look a little more fancy schmancy!


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This was like one giant science experiment to me in the kitchen. I’m pretty sure my kitchen is not even a kitchen anymore, just a science lab! (Insert the LOLs right here) I will come across a recipe and use it for inspiration but I just always gotta put my own spin on things. I’m not the type of person that will follow a recipe word for word. I am sharing with you how I took the traditional bread recipe and made it unique so you can DIY in your home kitchen. If you try it, you gotta let me know how you loved it!

This bread took a long time to bake compared to some paleo breads that I have made. This particular loaf took a little over an hour to puff up. I couldn’t resist a slice of this warm bread straight out of the oven. But I just had to add a sugary glaze to it. Why on Earth why? Simple answer… because I wanted to! To make the glaze you simply mix powdered sugar with a tiny bit of unsweetened almond milk until you get a nice, smooth consistency that you can drizzle onto the bread. I also used red and blue Simple Truth Natural Food Colors to make the purple glaze.

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Smurf Bread (blackberry lemon) made with Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free Homemade Wonderful Bread Mix topped with organic &amp; naturally colored glaze
The Smurf Bread made with Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Homemade Wonderful Bread Mix topped with organic & naturally colored glaze

So there you have it! There is my gorgeous loaf of purple bread that is completely infused with the taste of blackberries and lemon! This turned out much better than expected. I normally make paleo bead (this mix is not paleo) and my loaves usually do not puff up much. My bread often comes out dense and on the small side. This mix by Bob’s Red Mill contained a yeast packet so I am guessing that is what made my bread nice and fluffy.

Slice of Smurf Bread (blackberry lemon) made with Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free Homemade Wonderful Bread Mix
Slice of Smurf Bread made with Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Homemade Wonderful Bread Mix

This mix can either be made by hand or with a bread machine. I do not own a bread machine and I prefer the by hand method. I used my Kitchenaid Stand Mixer to do most of the kneading and work the prep to get this dough ready for the oven. This bread can be prepared traditionally and be used as a sandwich bread, dinner rolls, garlic bread, toast, etc. Just because I made this a fruity loaf that doesn’t mean that is what it has to be. There are recipes available on Bob’s Red Mill site that can give you some inspiration.

Will you be giving this Bob’s Red Mill Wonderful Bread Mix mix a whirl? What will you create with your mix? Leave me a comment and let me know. I would love to hear from my readers.

Want to give this bread mix a try? I have conveniently provided the shopping links below so you can grab a bag or four!

Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Homemade Wonderful Bread Mix available on Amazon:


Find out more about Bob’s Red Mill

 

Disclaimer: THIS POST CONTAINS AMAZON AFFILIATE LINKS. I DO RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION IF ITEMS ARE PURCHASED THROUGH THESE LINKS. Proceeds from the Amazon Affiliate Program help make this blog a better blogging experience for my readers. This is a sponsored post and these items were sent to me in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own.

 

Primal Kitchen Dressing & Marinade – Paleo, Whole 30, Keto Foods For Your Health – Take Your Meal To The Next Level

Primal Kitchen haul! Avocado oil and dressings/marinades

An exciting package recently landed on my doorstep. I knew it was coming and I was totally anticipating it. It was my Primal Kitchen package.

I ordered from Thrive Market (you can score 25% off with my link) but you can also order direct through Primal Kitchen and save 10% off your order with the promo code: GIVEITAWHIRL10. I strongly feel that the best way to go is directly through Primal Kitchen since they sell every single item that they have available.

The wonderful thing about these Primal Kitchen dressings is that they are REAL FOOD. These are paleo approved and that to me is just super. Many Primal Kitchen dressings are also Whole 30 compliant, but not all (check your labels). These dressings are made with avocado oil, which is considered a healthy fat. These dressings are also free of refined sugar & trans fat free, and that is something that you often see in salad dressings… sugar and trans fats which are absolutely garbage and wreak havoc on our systems. Primal Kitchen is also a low-carbohydrate option.

I started out with the Primal Kitchen Italian Dressing & Marinade. Sunday morning started out with me pouring a generous amount into a Pyrex casserole dish to marinate a couple of chicken breasts. I also poured a small amount into a bowl with some fresh mozzarella pearls and cherry tomatoes.

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Primal Kitchen Italian Dressing & Marinade
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Primal Kitchen Italian Dressing & Marinade with chicken breasts, mozzarella pearls, and cherry tomatoes
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Chicken breasts marinating in Primal Kitchen Italian Dressing & Marinade

Then dinner time rolled around and boy was I HANGRY! I oiled up my Lodge Cast Iron Grill Pan (everyone needs one of these grill pans) with a little drizzle of Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil and placed the marinated chicken in the pan.

I also had a nice garlic and rosemary flatbread that I created using a recipe by Savory Lotus. I made a few modifications to the recipe and boy did it ever turned out delicious! So props to Savory Lotus for the incredible recipe!

While I was using the grill pan to cook up the Primal Kitchen Italian Chicken Breasts I sliced some mozzarella pearls and topped the chicken with them and let them get a bit melty. Who doesn’t love some ooey gooey mozzarella cheese… yum and yes please!

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Chicken Caprese made using Primal Kitchen Italian Dressing/Marinade
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Chicken Caprese made using Primal Kitchen Italian Dressing/Marinade served with Rosemary/Garlic Flatbread

This dinner turned out great. My only regret is not having any fresh basil on hand to top this with. Gosh, I just love fresh basil in my Italian food. It really amps up the flavor. The flatbread was a nice addition to this meal. I would definitely make that again to serve on the side with one of my meals.

Have you ever tried Primal Kitchen? What item from their store appeals to you? CLICK HERE to find out more about Primal Kitchen and see the vast array of healthy foods they have available.

You can find Primal Kitchen on Amazon and get these items shipped to you within two days if you have a Prime Membership.

DISCLAIMER: THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. I DO RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION IF ITEMS ARE PURCHASED THROUGH THESE LINKS. THIS HELPS MAKE FOR A BETTER BLOG EXPERIENCE FOR ALL OF MY READERS. ALL PROCEEDS GO TOWARDS MAKING IMPROVEMENTS ON THIS BLOG.



Manic Monday? Treat Yourself To Some Fiesta At Macy’s

I got bitten by the Fiesta bug! Fiesta has been around for several years now and I have had my eye on it for quite some time. I finally went ahead and started my first collection of it. I continue to add on more to my collection piece by piece as time goes on. Macy’s is my go-to place for my Fiestaware. They often have it on sale and you can usually find a coupon code to be used in conjunction with that. Score!

What I love most about the Fiesta line of dinnerware [obviously] is the vibrant, stunning colors. These really do stand out in your cupboard and make you want to grab one and use it for your next meal. Also, when I have guests over for dinner they often compliment about how magnificent the plates are. They truly are dazzling. Another great thing about these plates that I have is the durability of them. These plates have a very nice weight to them and feel very sturdy. Want to know something great? They come with a 5-year chip warranty. So if these get chipped within a five-year range Fiesta will have your back. You know you are getting some reliable dinnerware that will last for years to come when there is a guarantee like that.

Some of the Fiesta in my home collection

Fiesta 4-Piece Place Setting – You can choose from a wide variety of colors and it includes a dinner plate, side plate, bowl, and mug. You can mix and match to create your own Fiesta collection. When I first purchased my collection I bought one of each color: Scarlet (red), Poppy (orange), Sunflower (yellow), Lemongrass (green), Turquoise (blue), and Mulberry (purple).

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Fiesta 4-Piece Place Setting

Fiesta 20-Piece Celebration Flatware Set – This flatware set has huge priority on my wishlist at the moment. This perfectly compliments your Fiesta dinnerware. I love the color inlays on this set. Simply gorgeous!

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Fiesta Celebration 20-Piece Flatware Set

Fiesta Merengue Knife Block Set – This thirteen piece cutlery set is like a chef’s dream. It would be an honor to have this set on display in my kitchen. Includes the following items:

  • 8″ scarlet chef’s knife
  • 7″ Poppy Santoku knife
  • 8″ Lemongrass bread knife
  • 6″ Turquoise utility knife
  • 5.5″ Turquoise cheese knife
  • 5.5″ Lemongrass tomato knife
  • 5″ Lapis Santoku knife
  • 4″ Lapis utility knife
  • 3.5″ Poppy paring knife
  • 3.5″ Scarlet Santoku knife
  • Cobalt Shears
  • Cobalt Sharpener
  • Cutlery Block
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Fiesta Merengue 13 Piece Cutlery Set

Fiesta Scarlet Set of 4 Highball Glasses – So you have the dinnerware. Check! You have the flatware. Check! You are going to need this set of drinkware to go with the perfect meal served on your Fiestaware. I love the fun, colorful stripes on these glasses. They would make any drink taste cool and refreshing!

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Fiesta Scarlet Set of 4 Highball Glasses

Fiesta 3 Piece Salad Set – This is a lovely set for entertaining your guests. It includes three pieces, includes bowl and servers and available in the following colors: Scarlet, Sunflower, and Lapis.

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Fiesta 3 Piece Salad Set

Fiesta Large Disk Pitcher – This stylish Fiesta pitcher is the perfect pitcher to pour your next drink from. This comes in a variety of stylish colors. I am really digging the green Lemongrass one.

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Fiesta Large Disk Pitcher (shown in Lemongrass)

Fiesta 7 Piece Utensil Set – This set includes six silicone kitchen tools so you can whip up your next recipe in style.

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7 Piece Fiesta Utensil Set

Fiesta Fringed Napkins– I am in love with these fringed Fiesta napkins. These would look perfect with your place settings. Available in four Fiesta colors!

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Fiesta Fringed Napkins

Fiesta Cheese Board and Tool Set– Who doesn’t love a good cheeseboard? These seem to be all the rage nowadays. I love chowing down and nibbling away at a good spread. This set comes with four handy cheese tools to ensure that your next board is a smashing success!

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Fiesta Cheese Board and Tool Set

Fiesta Skull & Vine Luncheon Plate – This plate is seriously just badass. I don’t care if it isn’t Halloween. I would eat anything off this plate year-round. Treat yourself to a coordinating pasta bowl, mug, and appetizer plate.

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Fiesta Skull & Vine Luncheon Plate

Fiesta Skull & Vines White Dinnerware Collection – Black or white? You can get your Fiesta skull dinnerware in white as well. Why not get both? Grab a luncheon plate, appetizer plate, and mug.

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Fiesta Skull & Vines White Dinnerware Collection

There are several (and I mean SEVERAL) more pieces of Fiesta available that you can treat yourself to. This is just a list of some of my personal faves.  What will you treat yourself to on this Manic Monday? Leave me a comment and let me know what you will be adding to your home kitchen.

DISCLAIMER: THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. I DO RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION IF ITEMS ARE PURCHASED THROUGH THESE LINKS. ALL OPINIONS STATED HERE ARE MY OWN. Also, images are from Macys.com

Extra 20% off Macy's Super Weekend with code SUPER. Excludes Specials. Shop now at Macys.com! Valid 8/16-8/19.

Paleo French Toast With Vanilla Custard & Raspberry Compote And Duck Bacon, And Some Other Things

Yesterday was a bittersweet day for me and my husband. My mom came over in the morning to pick Chloe up to go up–north (Oscoda, MI) to stay for two whole weeks. MY daughter is in love with all of her grandparents and values her time spent with all of them. Since my mom was coming over in the morning I decided to invite her over for some sweet and savory brunch. We had paleo French Toast with custard and raspberries.  I believe she left with a full, happy tummy and a warm heart.

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Paleo French Toast w/ Vanilla Custard, Raspberry Compote, and Maple Leaf Farms Duck Bacon

I have been playing around with a French Toast recipe that I have for quite some time. I produce this dish in a variety of ways. I have served it as Unicorn French Toast and I have also served it with a mixed berry compote. I have posted images below for you to see.

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Paleo Unicorn French Toast
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Mixed Berry Compote Paleo French Toast

Having French Toast for brunch is becoming a weekly tradition in the Give It A Whirl Girl Kitchen. The process is a bit time-consuming but the outcome is worth all of the effort that I put into this dish. You want to know why it is so delicious? Because the main ingredient is LOVE!

Give It A Whirl Girl with two mini loaves of paleo, gluten-free bread freshly b baked

I start out by baking two small loaves of gluten-free bread. I use almond flour and tapioca flour to create the bread. A little bit of raw honey goes in there along with some almond milk and some ground flaxseeds and chia seeds. I prefer to pump my bread full of fiber with the chia and flax. They also have other health benefits as well.

For this version, I also created a paleo friendly vanilla custard by using full-fat coconut milk, egg yolks, and by scraping the contents out of a vanilla bean. Making custard is a lengthy process with a lot of standing at the stove and whisking the mixture. I could not get my custard silky smooth yesterday because I am thinking I stirred my eggs in too quickly into the warmed coconut milk. It tasted fantastic though and had no added sugars.

The raspberry compote was created with a pint of organic raspberries and a splash of pure maple syrup. I simmer that on the stove until it reduces down into a thick raspberry sauce.

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Paleo French Toast w/ chia and flax, vanilla custard, and raspberry compote
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Paleo French Toast w/ chia and flax, vanilla custard, and raspberry compote

My mom had a hankering for some bacon with her French Toast so we fried up some Maple Leaf Farms duck bacon. Yeah, you heard that right…. DUCK BACON! Maple Leaf Farms specializes in a variety of duck items, including the bacon. The bacon has less fat than traditional bacon and it is just as versatile as regular pork bacon. My whole family really enjoyed this bacon, including my daughter Chloe who is usually not a fan of any type of bacon. She was clamoring for more she loved it so much!

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Maple Leaf Farms Duck Bacon cooking on the stovetop

I also wanted to share with you that I finally own a plain white plate! How unreal is that? I live in a color-obsessed world and owning a white plate seems foreign to me. I had to add it to my Fiesta dinnerware collection. I just had to! I am on a mission to own every single color of dinner plates that they offer. I was pleasantly surprised to see how nice my meal looked on a plain white plate. Not too shabby!

I really enjoyed having my mother over yesterday morning. I keep joking around with her about buying a house in the area and living around the block from me just so she can come by to enjoy the food that I whip up. Joking but not really! That really would be wonderful if my mom didn’t live so far away. I get a lot of pleasure from inviting people over so they can try out my food.

Speaking of which, I was recently just informed that this year for the holidays, Thanksgiving and Xmas, I am going to responsible for hosting the gatherings! That will most certainly be interesting, especially Thanksgiving because I have never ever in my life cooked an entire turkey. It sounds like a fun project to tackle but it honestly makes anxiety creep up on me with just the thought of such a huge commitment.

After brunch, my daughter loaded her suitcase into my mom’s truck. She will be gone for two weeks and I will miss her so much! She is my little blogger sidekick and I love the little foodie explorations that we do together. We said our goodbyes and I watched her leave.

Our time away from each other will be great for everyone involved though so I am trying to look at the matter with optimism. I will be able to devote much more time to blogging and recipe creating. Chloe will be able to make some wonderful memories on her trip and her Grandma Kathie will bond over those two weeks. Also, my husband and I will get some much-needed alone time. So definitely going to be taking major advantage to all of this alone time over here.

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Give It A Whirl Girl and The Pearl Girl

Joe and I spent the day together. We did a little shopping (I needed things for the blog of course). Joe is always my chauffeur. I am always appreciative of all his help and support in getting this blog up and running.

We also got some fitness in with the dogs. We are dog-watching my sister’s little old chihuahua named Bebo. He has stayed with us a little over a week and he is always a joy to have around. I am usually not a fan of that breed of dogs but Bebo is super sweet and gets along very well with Stormy. They are definitely buddies!

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When we got home after our walk with the dogs we had a couple of beers and we ordered food from Pepperoni Grille through the GrubHub app. GrubHub is a fairly new food delivery service that will deliver food from various restaurants that are local. You can sign up through this LINK and save $10 off your first order that is $15+. We are pretty addicted to the convenience of GrubHub and it is so perfect for me since I do not drive (I have a severe phobia of driving).

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Right Brain Brewery Blue Magic Beer
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Antipasto Salad from Pepperoni Grille in St Clair Shores, MI

I am new to the world of craft beer and I honestly do not know how to discuss beer in any sort of lengthy, descriptive way (yet). The beer first was from Right Brain Brewery and it was called Blue Magic. The beer had hints of lavender in it and I really enjoyed the taste. I also had another beer with my salad and that was Mango Surprise from Arcadia Ales. I am not a big fan of the IPA beers but that one I did actually love the taste of. Very mango-ey!

The salad that I received from Pepperoni Grille was pretty decent. I did get brave and ordered anchovies on the side because I have never tried out. I was just always grossed out at the thought of them. Turns out I was right~ they are way too salty. I liked the first one that I ate with my salad and then I got hit with the fishy salty aftertaste. Not cool! Joe had a pepperoni pizza for dinner and he enjoyed his pizza and said he could have probably eaten a whole large one by himself. I believe him too because he can pack in a pizza!

Today is Sunday and I have to decide what I am making for dinner tonight. I love to make Sunday dinners special for my family. I have a bunch of Primal Kitchen dressings/marinades I can play around with so it might be something along those lines for dinner tonight.

Do you have anything special planned for the day today? Leave me a comment and let me know. I would love to hear from my readers. Comments here do brighten up my day!

DISCLAIMER: THIS POST CONTAINS AMAZON AFFILIATE LINKS. I DO RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION IF ITEMS ARE PURCHASED THROUGH THESE LINKS. ALL OPINIONS STATED HERE ARE MY OWN.



First-Timer’s At Apple Annie’s (REVIEW) & Dessert At Roger’s Bulk Candy Again

I have been living in this area of Southeast, Michigan all of my life. I have driven past Apple Annie’s in Roseville, MI numerous times, way too many to count. I have always been curious about how their food was. Last night my family and I finally gave it a whirl. We try to be thrifty while dining out and we had a coupon from a local paper. I have always heard that they were famous for their soups and that was plenty enough to get me to try it out because I love having a nice cup of soup to go with my dinner. On their website, they mention that they were voted best soup in Michigan for two years in a row. That was a claim I was willing to find out for myself. We also stopped by Roger’s Bulk Candy & Ice-Cream after dinner. Read more to get the deets!

Me before dinner at Apple Annie's in Roseville,, MI
Me before dinner at Apple Annie’s in Roseville,, MI

 

Apple Annie's on Gratiot, in Roseville, MI
Apple Annie’s on Gratiot, in Roseville, MI

 

The first thing you notice while coming inside the restaurant is the dessert cases. There were fresh baked cookies, brownies, and I even spied with my little eyes Sanders Bumpy Cake, which is one of my all-time favorite cakes. Apple Annie’s is not only a restaurant but a bakery as well. They offer up freshly baked fruit pies, deliciously appealing bakery desserts, and specialty loaves of bread.

We sat down and looked over the menus. I sure made a great first impression for me. They specialize in traditional fare but also have some exciting items on the menu. I was really impressed with the soup list (as shown below). I had to inquire to the waitress about Kapusta and the Forest Gump Soup, since I had no idea what those were. Kapusta is a Polish soup with kielbasa and potatoes in it. The Forest Gump, which I should have know, had shrimp in it duh! Bubba Gump shrimp anyone??

I really was torn on what to order here because there were a lot of great options I could go with. I almost ordered one of the summer specials that was a pineapple half stuffed with salad and fruit. Gosh, that sounded amazing! I went back and forth in my mind and when the waitress finally showed up I told her that I was going to be brave and try out the Kapusta for the first time in my life. I figured that soup would pair well with the cabbage rolls so I ended up ordering that. I have not had stuffed cabbage in who knows how long? It’s really been that long! I love that dish but never cook it at home because I would be the only one here eating it, unfortunately.

Joe ended up going with the Dinner Chicken Pot Pie. He was going to go with a regular ol’ cheeseburger and I talked him into that. He orders a cheeseburger pretty much everywhere we go, or fajitas. Chloe had a decent children’s menu and I was hoping she would order something a little healthier but she really wanted a cheeseburger and fries. I was fine with that.

Apple Annie’s Dinner Menu

I received my soup and my eyes lit up. It looked so wonderful! I was excited to try out my kapusta for the first time and it did not disappoint. It was like a Polish explosion in my mouth. I really could have sat there and devoured a bowl of this soup. I see why they were voted for top soup in Michigan. I couldn’t think of a single thing that I did not enjoy about this soup. A big plus for me was there were many chunks of kielbasa and plenty of diced potatoes. It was a thick and hearty soup.

Joe, on the other hand, had chicken noodle soup. I did not try it but he said it was a bit on the salty side. I think he is just really adjusted to the way I cook at home and I use a minimal amount of salt in my food. When we dine out nowadays, food often does come across heavy on the salt side.

The soups came out with a basket of warm, freshly baked bread. I took a little taste but let me daughter have my dinner roll. She and Joe enjoyed the bread very much.

Apple Annie’s Kapusta Soup

So now for the dinners! In the photo below I showcase our two dinners: Dinner Chicken Pot Pie and the Cabbage Rolls dinner.

Apple Annie’s Cabbage Rolls and Chicken Pot Pie
Apple Annie’s Cabbage Rolls

Do I get a trophy or a badge? I did somehow manage to stuff three golabkis at Apple Annies, a pile of mashed potatoes, and some steamed carrots into my skinny frame! I was stuffed to the gills with food. We did not order dessert at Apple Annie’s but maybe next time! Overall, I was highly satisfied with my meal. Chloe was delighted with her meal. Joe did not particularly care for his pot pie. He said he would give Apple Annie’s another chance. I’m sure next time he will just be safe with his burger. For myself, I will definitely be exploring other items on the menu. Apple Annie’s was delicious! Delcious!

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If you would like to learn more about Apple Annie’s check out their website HERE. There is a Roseville location and a Clinton Township location for your convenience. You can view the entire menu online so you will have an idea on what you might order when you visit. The menu is quite big and has so many great items on it, it is hard to narrow it down to one choice. Hope you enjoy your experience at Apple Annie’s as much as I did!

Next stop was dessert. We have been overindulging a bit in the ice-cream as of lately. I admit that I have an ice-cream problem… a real true addiction. I could eat every single day in the summer. We ended up visiting Roger’s Bulk Candy & Ice-Cream in Eastpointe, MI again. Our last banana split there was totally epic. You can read more about my first experience at Roger’s in THIS POST HERE.

Roger’s Bulk Candy & Ice-Cream in Eastpointe, MI
Roger’s Bulk Candy & Ice-Cream in Eastpointe, MI
Roger’s Bulk Candy & Ice-Cream in Eastpointe, MI – Whirly Pops and Unicorn Lollipops

We decided we would share another banana-split once again for the three of us. We mixed it up just a bit this time around. We went with Blue Moon with chocolate on top, Amaretto Cherry with strawberries on top, and Superman with pineapple on top. Of course we also needed a heaping mountain of whipped cream and rainbow candy sprinkles. We also had to have our three maraschino cherries on top. I think every kid always gets a kick out of eating the cherries on top!

Roger’s Bulk Candy & Ice-Cream in Eastpointe, MI – Ice-Cream getting scooped for our beautiful banana-split

We were met with service and a smile at Roger’s. The staff there is very friendly and always willing to help. The girl who waited on us was patient and created a gorgeous banana-split worthy of an Instagram post.

Roger’s Bulk Candy & Ice-Cream in Eastpointe, MI – Banana Split w/ Bue Moon, Cherry Amaretto, and Superman
Roger’s Bulk Candy & Ice-Cream in Eastpointe, MI – Banana Split w/ Bue Moon, Cherry Amaretto, and Superman

Today is Saturday and I don’t have a clue what I am making for dinner tonight. Actually, I would rather go out on a date night since it is just me and hubby for two whole weeks!

I might just maybe be making from-scratch pizza one more time for Joe and I. I ordered a Paleo Pizza Crust mix from Thrive Market and I am super curious about it. It could be something else other than pizza too because I got a great haul of Primal Kitchen dressings and marinades delivered yesterday. Decisions, decisions! I do have some great meals planned for the week. Chloe will be up-north in Oscoda, MI for two whole weeks so I will only be cooking for two for a while.

Did you have a great meal this weekend, or do you have a fabulous meal planned for dinner tonight? Leave me a comment and let me know what is cooking.

Comments are always welcomed and I enjoy getting them. To be quite honest, I get excited just to see that I have a comment to read and reply to!

 

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