Thursday, October 30, 2014

The New Pickle is a Bean

I've eaten green beans prepared a lot of different ways, but my favourite would have to be pickled; to be specific, Matt & Steve's The Extreme Bean pickled beans.

Matt & Steve's was founded in 2000 by college roommates.  The products are made with nothing artificial, and all the ingredients are recognizable things, you likely have in your fridge or cupboard:

When the people at Matt & Steve's sent me some of these to try, we busted into the Garlic & Dill ones right away.  I'm not going to lie - they're gone.  I couldn't photograph them because we ate them up too quickly. 

The other bean flavours are Hot & Spicy, and Sweet & Savoury.  They have a really bold flavour, and a lot of crunch, which is really appealing.  These are not soggy green beans!

They would be great as a burger garnish, wrapped in prosciutto, or paired with a sharp cheddar cheese.  Of course, they are also delicious on their own, or as a drink garnish.

My favourite of the products I tried are the B'n Olives.  These are ridiculous; so garlicky, and some of the best olives I've ever had.  They are perfect for a grown up drink garnish.

Also perfect for a grown up drink garnish is the caesar rimmer - yum!

We plan to use the rest of the beans to make different fun hors d'oeuvres ... if we don't devour them all straight out of the jar first ... standing by the fridge ....  Okay, that might have happened. 

If you want to try Matt & Steve's products for yourself, check out their website here.

Do you like pickled products?  

* Full disclosure:  These products were provided to me at no cost for review consideration.  All opinions are my own.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014


This meme has been floating around the blog world; I saw it on Amber's blog.   Here are my answers:

Making:  I'll be making up treat bags for Halloween soon!
Cooking:  Nothing too exciting, but we've got some fun meals planned for November.
Drinking: A lot of tea.  I've stopped drinking coffee during the work week, for the most part, and have been drinking green tea instead.  When Christopher and I get home from work, we always have tea together too, before starting dinner or whatever.
Reading:  A textbook for my class.  Boo. 
Wanting:  To spend more time at home, not doing anything.
Looking:  For a Halloween costume idea.  I have no time.  I'm probably going to reuse a costume I've used many times in the past.
Playing:  The new discs that we bought recently: DeadMau5, James Brown, Primus 
Wasting:  Time, that should be spent on homework.
Sewing:  That's funny that this is on here; I haven't sewed anything lately, but Christopher did some sewing yesterday! 
Wishing:  Christopher's handsome father a happy 70th birthday today! 
Enjoying:  The mild weather.  
Waiting:  For "no-spend" November to start.  We are so ready to do absolutely nothing, and make no social plans. 
Loving:  The time we've been spending with our niece Charlotte.  She has our hearts. 
Marveling:  At how my prof could assign an 80 page research paper.  Is that even legal? 
Needing:  To clean the house - haven't had time.
Smelling:  The Prada Candy perfume that I tried on at Sephora.  LOVE. 
Wearing:  Christopher's shorts and a tank. 
Following:  Salty Seattle on Instagram.  The girl is insane.  
Noticing:  How I haven't had a cold or the flu in a long time, likely due to more sleep in the past couple years than I ever got before. 
Thinking:  I'm thinking I'm not going to need to worry about studying much for the quiz coming up in my class in a couple weeks.  The quiz is on very, very basic stats, and after taking numerous stats classes, and doing two qualitative theses, I think I've got the basics cased.  Yay! 
Bookmarking:  This was the last thing I bookmarked. 
Opening:  A package that came in the mail. 
Giggling:  At Christopher.  Because that's pretty much my life. 
Feeling:  Happier than ever; life is so good.

Choose a few and answer in the comments!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Ten on Tuesday

1)  The nice people from Popcorn Indiana recently sent me some Chocolate Peanut Butter popcorn to try (full disclosure: this product was provided to me free of charge). 

I love trying new, healthier snack options, and especially love that the product is made with Non-GMO corn.

2)  We picked up some Halloween candy for the trick-or-treaters!  We're giving them mini chocolate bars and some Cheezies!  Do you get trick-or-treaters?  What are you handing out? 

3)  I absolutely hate to replace household items, furniture, etc..  Christopher and I are both of the same mindset; we believe in buying high quality items that will last, and then we prefer to repair them instead of replacing them if possible.  We save a lot of money by never buying things like new furniture, new appliances, a new TV, etc., unless we absolutely have to.  The couch cushions, which are over 10 years old, are starting to get holes in them, and the filling is coming out.  I was so happy when I came home today and Christopher had told me he sewed them up!  There is no need to replace beautiful cushions when they are still good!

4)  When we got home from Winnipeg on Sunday, we were quite happy to see that we had all the ingredients for bee bimp bop in the fridge.

5)  The leftovers made a great lunch on Monday.

6)  There was still leftover rice, so Christopher used that to make kimchi fried rice for Monday's dinner. 

We've been taking turns cooking a lot lately, just due to a busy month ... but we are excited to get back into the kitchen together in November.

7)  Tonight the boys are jamming, so I'm whipping up an easy dinner while blogging and doing homework.  It is about to go into the oven.  We're having ribs, potatoes and peas.

8)  I threw a little fit when I read that the class I am taking next semester will be on Friday nights.  A day later I found out it was a glitch, and they will in fact not be ruining my life ;-)

9)  Those who've been reading my blog for a long, long time, know that I used to eat a lot of oatmeal for breakfast, usually with really fun toppings.  This week I've been back on the oatmeal.

Yogurt with toppings is making a comeback too ...

10)  I just threw a quiche in the oven for breakfasts for the rest of the week.  I love having a hearty, warm breakfast in the morning, and prepping a quiche ahead of time is perfect!  It warms up so nicely.  I used mushrooms, spinach, tomato, onion, zucchini, and three kinds of cheese. 

You can find my basic quiche recipe here.  It's smelling good already!

What are your Tuesday things?  How's your week going so far?

Monday, October 27, 2014

Weekend Road Trip

We had another weekend away!  This past weekend we went on a road trip to Winnipeg.  We didn't get into town until quite late on Friday night.  We met up with my uncle J for a late dinner and visit at The Grove.

The next morning we went to Kawaii Crepe - yum!!

The afternoon was spent at The Forks, where we tried a moose poop (I call these chocolate mountains; others call them chocolate macaroons). 

What do you call them?

We then relaxed a bit, and had some dinner before seeing Jake Bugg and The Black Keys in concert. 

On Sunday we grabbed a quick breakfast at Smitty's before heading home.

We're really looking forward to some weekends at home, and "no-spend November", in which we plan to basically stay in, cook at home, and not go out or spend money.  Other than three prior commitments for the month, we don't plan on adding anything else.  You should be seeing a lot of home-cooked meals - new recipes, etc..

How was your weekend?  What did you do?

Friday, October 24, 2014

This Week in a Post

Our last couple days in Denver, we ate some more delicious things, but the highlights were this mac and cheese:

And more spicy beef soup from Phonatic:

In the airport on the way home, Christopher had to have a Dorito Loco Taco from Taco Bell.  He has been going on and on about this taco since he missed out on one in the Denver airport in February, when I made a poor meal choice, instead of choosing Taco Bell aka the right choice.  Haha!

It was everything he hoped it would be.  And more.

When we got home on Sunday, we went to the store for a big grocery shopping trip.  We loaded up on veggies, and grabbed a bunch of yummy root vegetables, including what was labelled a "fairytale pumpkin".

Once home, I had a lot of work to catch up on, and class to attend.  Christopher did most of the cooking this week.  He roasted a chicken on Sunday evening, and made roasted acorn squash, sweet potato, and butternut squash as a side.

He then made chicken stock, which he used to make soup for dinner on Tuesday.

And he roasted the fairytale pumpkin, and made pumpkin grilled cheese, which we ate on Monday evening.

On Wednesday evening, I made creamy mushroom risotto, which I had ready for when Christopher got home from his late meeting at work.

Last night we babysat and ordered in, and this weekend ...

We're road trippin'!!

What are you up to this weekend?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The Big 3-0

My handsome fella turned 30 on Friday, and we celebrated all day long.  After he opened a few fabulous prizes, we headed to Denver Biscuit Company for breakfast.

Christopher had the mammoth pulled pork, coleslaw, pickle, concoction:

And my biscuit had fried chicken, bacon and cheese with sausage gravy:

The biscuits are amazing, but the cheesy grits are even better.  They are the best we've ever had.

I couldn't finish my biscuit, but it wasn't for a lack of trying.

Also, we had to save room to try Voodoo Doughnuts!

We shared the three doughnuts over the course of a couple days.  Neither of us are huge doughnut fanatics, but I think they were likely the best doughnuts we've eaten.  They have a nice crispy exterior which is different from other doughnuts we've had.

Our late lunch was a bit healthier ...

We had some Vietnamese soup.  The server also brought out a giant place of fresh Thai basil, bean sprouts, lime wedges and jalapeno slices.  We couldn't believe how big the stack of basil and sprouts was - craziness!

We spent the afternoon visiting a couple of lounges, one being a cigar lounge next to the concert venue we'd be hitting up in the evening.  The guy working at the lounge really liked us, and asked if he could sit and talk with us a while.  We had a nice time visiting with him; we seem to make friends wherever we go. 

In the evening we went to The Ogden Theatre to see one of our favourite DJs, Bonobo.  The place was packed, the opener was okay ...

But when Bonobo was on stage ...

Our minds were blown.

If you don't know of Bonobo, look him up.  So, so good.

We needed some late night snacks after the show, so we went to Biker Jim's Gourmet Hotdogs (the same romantic place we went to for Valentine's day).  We shared an elk hotdog, some fried mac and cheese, and fries.

The fried mac and cheese is phenomenal. 

Finally Christopher is in his thirties. 

I've only been waiting a couple of years ...

What did you do for your thirtieth birthday (if you've had it)?
If you're not 30 yet, what did you do for your 20th?  25th?  Anything special?