food

A Day Trip to Temecula for All the Winey

Hello Lovelies!

Recently I took a short day trip out to Temecula,CA for some wine tastings. If you are in the LA area, the drive is anywhere from 1.5-2 hours depending on traffic of course.

 

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You can grab some lunch in Downtown Temecula which has that old town feel. There are all sorts of cuisine and little boutique shopping areas.

We visited a couple Wineries but the two that I would most definitely recommend are Wilson Creek and Ponte. All the wineries are on one road so you literally just drive from one to the next and their less than 5 min away (driving wise).

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Wilson Creek Winery
This was at the end of road and one of the last wineries. The size and garden area of this winery is HUGE and beautiful. There are ample seating in the garden area with tables and umbrellas for you to sit, relax, talk, and enjoy your wine with friends or family. They have wine tasting $15/$20 per guest depending on if its weekday or weekends and you get to sample 5 different type of wines. They are known for their Almond Champagne which has a really nice scent of Almond but it does seem a little artificial. If you want to buy a bottle it’s actually cheaper to buy it at Bevmo or other retailers than at the winery. I though I had taken more pictures but I guess not.. so just go to their website to visualize what I’m trying to say (:

 

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Ponte
The size of this Winery is huge as well! There are two parts, one is the resort and the other is where the Barrel Room/Tasting Room/ and restaurant is at which is separated by a 5-7 min walk. The resort part was very new and decorated with a lot of reclaimed wood detailing. There are seating outside with fire pits incase it gets a little chilly in the evening. On the other side there was this beautiful garden area just outside the barrel room which is open for you to go into explore and see how the wine barrels are stored.

Tips** Before you go please check on the hours because a lot of them close around 5PM so we were unable to do some things that we wanted to… Like visit the Barrel Room..

IMG_1264so instead.. we were only able to take pictures in front of the pretty door.

Until Next Time,

IMG_1275Happy Wine Tasting!

❤ Jessica

Outfit Details: Charlotte Russe Sunglasses / Forever 21 Floral Maxi / Forever 21 Pink Kimono / Coach Madison Sabrina Ikat- Blue / Bandolino Sandals

 

Chocolate Strawberry Pudding Shots

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Hello Lovelies!

To kickstart this long weekend for the 4th of July, I am here with an easy recipe that you can bring to your BBQ or party. Everyone knows about Jello Shots and if you have outgrown them then fear not because this Chocolate Strawberry Pudding Shot is like a jello shot that gained enough EXP and now has leveled up to the grown up level. This looks super cute and it’s easy to enjoy.

 


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 Ingredients:

Strawberry (make sure their bigger in size)
1 Box of Chocolate Pudding (4serving size)
Cool Whip (4oz) – Optional
Creamer (1 cup)
Godiva Chocolate Liqueur (1/2 Cup)
Vodka (1/2 Cup)

 

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Step 1: Cut the top of the strawberry and scoop out the insides making it hallow like a cup. I used a Double Melon Baller as a scooped because the size is perfect for this. If you want the strawberry to stand on its own then you can also cut the bottom portion off as well creating a flat surface but make sure you don’t cut too much or else it’s going to cut into your hallow strawberry cup. You can use the insides for something else if you are making multiple dishes but I just make strawberry water with it.

 

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Step 2: Get a big soup noodle bowl for the next step. It should only be filled less than half after you pour in 2 cups of liquid. Mix in your Creamer (I used hazelnut because.. hello? Chocolate Hazelnut= Nutella = heavenly!), Liqueur, and Vodka (or in my case Soju which is a clear spirit that is similar to Vodka because I didn’t want to spend 15 bucks on a bottle of vodka that I will not drink so instead I opted for a bottle of Soju that is only about $3).

 

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Step 3: Add in your pudding mix and whisk it until its smooth.

 

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Step 4: This step is optional but it really makes the pudding a lot more fluffy and light. Fold in 4oz of Cool Whip (do not whisk it in).

 

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Step 5: You can either do the next step the hard way by scooping in spoonful at a time to fill the strawberry or transfer your pudding into a zip lock bag and create your own pastry bag so you can squeeze it in.

Step 6: Let it chill until it’s ready for serving. You can either chill it in the fridge so it’s easy to plop in your mouth and consume or it can also be chilled in the freezer turning it into a frozen treat.

I forgot to take a picture of the finished product but I really want to post this today before tomorrow! It’s pretty straight forward so I’m sure you guys can imagine how it looks like (: You can’t even taste the alcohol in the pudding and it’s so delicious paired with the strawberry.

If you decide to try this recipe out please let me know how yours turned out!

Until Next Time,
❤ Jessica

**sorry for the picture quality, the lighting was terrible yesterday >.< and when I make this again I will probably update the pictures in the future but for now this will do**

 

 

Blue Jam Cafe

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i’m in love.
everything we ordered was just so delicious that even after the meal I wanted MORE!.. Like now. I have been craving for Blue Jam’s crunchy french toast this past week so I thought hmmm.. I should share this delicious gem with you guys and make you want it so you can suffer with me.

This place is quite small so I can’t imagine the amount of people there are waiting for a table during peak hours.
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Italian Breakfast Risotto- beautifully plated and tasted just as good as it looks. Arborio rice with fresh mushrooms, sun dried tomatoes, baby spinach, fresh basil, fresh tarragon, and parmesan reggiano, topped with two poached eggs and drizzled with herb pistou. need i say more? just a forewarning though, if you’re looking for a lighter brunch option then this might not be what you’ll want to order because it is quite heavy since it is a risotto.

Crunchy French Toast. … GET IT! .. don’t think about it.. its a must! French toast with corn flakes. Not too heavy or sweet.. the most delicious french toast I’ve ever had. Has just the right amount of crunch to it without it being too hard or awkward to chew.

If you ask me for a recommendation for brunch, right off the bat I’ll say Blue Jam.

Until Next Time,
❤ Jessica

 

Brophy Bro

Stopped by for a light quick meal in Santa Barbara on the way home from Solvang.. It was a little hard to find considering that the back of the restaurant was undergoing construction when I went.. but it was all cool and dandy when I found it.

The place looks like any other seafood joint that you’ll find by the pier. Inside seating as well as outside around the perimeter of the restaurant on the second floor.. (the first floor I think is more fast food style? I’m not sure.. they weren’t open yet when I went)  Very open and a great view of all the boats in that little harbor.

Since I was going for a light meal I ordered the…

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HOLY SMOKES.. mouthful of clams in every spoonful. No joke. Even though its clam chowder, you won’t get that overly heavy creaminess. The star of the chowder is in fact the clams and not the potato like a lot of places. Must try!

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If only the oysters shells were cleaned better before serving. It was almost as if the oysters were just lightly rinsed over water before cracking open because there were a ton of concentrated black dirt that got all over my hands when I was trying to enjoy my oysters effortlessly. Don’t get me wrong.. the oysters were deliciously fresh. Just got annoyed of constantly have to wipe my hands after touching the oysters.

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One of their recommended dishes.. and after trying it.. I recommend it as well! When it comes to battered fried fish I am quite skeptical since there is nothing I hate more about food than over battered fried food. (fair food anyone?) But Brophy Bro does it right. The batter is so light its almost tempura like, but its not! I bet you this is one way to get kids to eat fish!

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While you eat, if you decide to sit at the patio then this is the view… Sail Boats! Its so calming because the surrounding area wasn’t crazy busy with a ton of tourist. This was actually away from the crowd which was nice.

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And after your delicious meal, you can go take a walk down this beautiful path.

Definitely stopping by again next time i’m in SB bro~

Brophy Bro’s Yelp Page

Kale Chips

First that I’ve had Kale Chips was actually in class. We were having a sustainable pot luck in my environmental class. I thought wow, this is actually quite tasty. After I went home and started looking at recipes but never really actually made it myself.

I have purchased store bought ones but I don’t think its very digestible.. if you know what I mean.

I have finally decided to experiment and make my own kale chips. Many recipes are the same. So.. theres not really a right or wrong way but this is how I made it.

ImageInstead of buying  stock of Kale, I opted for the lazy way out. I purchased a prewashed, precut bag from Trader Joes. That way the ones that I don’t use I will use it for salad.

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Ingredients: Olive Oil, Pepper, Salt, and of course Kale.

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Spread the Kale on the pan. Drizzle the oil on the kale. Sprinkle Salt and Pepper (your preference as to how salty and spicy you want it). Then mix it together so its evenly coated.

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Place it in the oven thats been preheated to 350. Its going to take about 10-15 min. But check back on it every so often making sure that its not burning. You can take a fork and move the kale around in the pan to check if its done or not. You will know because you’ll feel the crispy-ness of the kale.

AND that is how Kale Chips is make. So delicious and simple. You can always season it with other type of seasoning for a variety of different taste. Be creative!

Only thing that I want to figure out is how can I keep my Kale from getting stale. After making it, if you don’t eat it within a couple hours, it will turn stale. So this is more of a make and eat type of thing. I need to figure out a way to keep the kale crispy so that way you can make a huge batch to munch on throughout the week. Because lets face it, most of us just want to grab and go with our busy life styles.

Whole Foods Hauling

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Every time I venture into Whole Foods its like trying to scavenger for something thats not crazily priced. Im always on a look for healthier options when it comes to food. My recent trip to Whole Food only consist of a 3 purchases.

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Almond Butter … This isn’t just the average almond butter you buy at the market. Its FRESH! Thats right, you grind it yourself. They have different nuts that you can grind into whatever butters you want. Peanut, almond chocolate, roasted peanuts, etc, Don’t remember exactly what they are, but its somewhere along the lines of those. Fresh Almond butter is not all oily like ones we buy at the store that require stirring. The oil settles on the top a little bit but nowhere compared to packaged ones. Its about 12.99/lb and for the amount I got, was about $8. You get as much or little as you like. This is my absolute FAVORITE. Not too creamy. Not too chunky. No added sugars, just grounded nuts.

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Guayaki Yerba Mate enlighten mint … First that I’ve heard of this was actually through Amy Castle. So basically, this is a “energy drink” . Yerba Mate, which is what the plant is called. So what benefits does this plant have and how can it make this drink act as a natural energy drink? According to Wikipedia, benefits are … “antioxidants and nutritional benefits combine to help improve the immune system, detoxify the body, relieve allergies, reduce the risk of diabetes and hypoglycemia, burns more calories, acts as an appetite suppressant and weight loss tool, increases the supply of nutrients and oxygen to the heart, may reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes, increases mental energy and focus, improves mood, and promotes a deeper sleep, however sleep may be affected in people who are sensitive to caffeine.” So theres a ton of benefits to the Yerba Mate plant. The enlighten mint flavor taste like a Moroccan mint tea and I quite enjoyed it. This definitely did not give me a crash after drinking it like a regular sugar filled energy drink would. Taste great, has less calories then regular drinks, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. There’s no unknown ingredients. Regular price is $1.99 but right not its 2/$3 at Sprouts the last time I was there. Definitely going to pick more up.

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ImageAvocado Vinaigrette Dressing … Doesn’t this just sound ahmazing? Avocado dressing, I mean c’mon. I can’t be the only one that got suckered into getting this. Well guys. Please me smarter then me. This. Taste. HORRID. It has absolutely NO Avocado taste. Its too sour and just overall I did not like it at all. Lets just say, it was so bad that I threw my salad away. I couldn’t get myself to even eat two full bites. Granted, its quite low in calories/carbs/fat/etc compared to other dressings. With it being $5 a bottle. I wish I can return this or exchange it for something else.

LA StreetFoodFestival

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pay $50 bucks entrance and you get to indulge in tasty street food and alcohol. How much can you really eat?

Held at the Pasadena Rose bowl was the 4th annual LA street food festival. VIP $75 gets you in 2 hrs earlier, while $50 gets you in at 5pm.

I had work in the morning so I didn’t get there until 6pm. Good and bad I guess, the sun was setting so it wasn’t as hot.. but it was still a scorching hot day. Some of the vendors were starting to run out of food about an hour after being there. So tips for those that are planning to go next year.. go EARLY. maybe the $75 is worth it? For those that went with the VIP, let me know (:

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Ceviche Project: Read some more reviews and realized that the lines were ridiculously long the whole time. Not just when I was waiting for it. Was it worth the wait? no so sure. The ingredients used sounded delicious but the outcome of it was just soso. Uni Mayo?

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Badmaash: This is one of the top three on my list. Really good and full of flavor. Has the creamy taste and texture of tikka masala. absolutely delish.

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George’s Greek: Had two different fillings. Spinach with feta or the beef and lamb. Guess which one I opted for? Of course the beef and lamb. and of course it was tender and delicious.

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Lazy Ox Canteen: Pig ears. very chewy. not so crispy but very chewy pig ear. Not so good.

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MexiKosher: Not exactly sure what this is. Its a actual flower tortilla with a dollop of… sweet and sour blob of… jelly? yeah…

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Tainamite: Very Garlic-ey noodles. Sad enough, its another top three on my list. It was plain, but so good. My cousins BF said us Chan’s and our noodles. What can I say? we love our noodles. We had about… 5? orders of sampling for the 3 of us.

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Trattoria Neapolis: Im not sure if its because the samples were pre-made and have been sitting out for too long, of if its suppose to taste just really soggy? It sounds delicious but one thing about food that I really dislike would be soggy bread. And this had just that >.< but the lemonade was really good a refreshing. had a light basil taste.

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Maestro’s Sausage: You wanna play their sausage? Well, feel free because its on display. Want a taste? They got their sausage on a tortilla. Spicy, juicy, not too salty. Just overall a really goood sausage. Another top 3.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Bling Bling Dumpling: Cheeseburger Dumpling. I imagine it to be just like a cheeseburger but in a dumpling. Boy was I wrong. It was just like a regular dumpling filling with a not so cheeseburger like taste. But I did only have a little bite since they wouldn’t give me more than 1 and I was sharing with 3 other people. Couldn’t they have at leave given me just 1 more?! But super cute packaging.

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Bibigo: Korean Authenticity Approved. all I need to say.

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Carving Board: Turkey Dinner sandwich. Sounds awesome. Was pretty good.. IF it was warmer and IF they heated up the bread because the bread was a bit hard and dry. Im sure if you got this sandwich fresh from the truck, it would’ve been just like a turkey dinner. 

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Pressed Juicery: I guess you can call us lucky? First time around, they said they were out. As we were leaving, we caught them giving away FULL BOTTLES! Snatched a bottle and I have to say, it has changed my view on drinking vegetable juice.

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Dang’s Brother Pizza: Gotta admit that its pretty cool. That fire truck with that open oven. And the pizza was fresh with the cheese all melted and gooey.

And as for the rest of these, I don’t know where its from because  heres a tip. If you go with a group of friends, split up and go to different lines. That way you cover more ground and get to try more stuff! But either bring a tray or find one to hold your samples. Because you know, we only have two hands.

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Some type of dessert cake soaked in coffee.

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The green sauce with the roll was better than the actual meat and taco itself. The meat didn’t have too much flavor and wasn’t all that tender.

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Taco?

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Now, this Shrimp taco was loaded with shrimp. It was spicy and delicious. I know I’ve been saying I have 3 items that tops it all, but I guess theres 4.

So what have I learned from this food adventure?

  1. Come EARLY
  2. Plan out the vendors that you want to go check out first. Don’t just wander around because you might be filling up and wasting your time with vendors your not too interested in.
  3. Bring a hat because it will get really sunny and hot.
  4. Split up and wait in multiple line
  5. Share samples instead of finishing one yourself. You will get full faster than you think.

It’s been fun… So I’ll see you guys there next year?