Plans For Saturday?

culinaryI will be at the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills, laughing at and with Billy Crystal and John Goodman of Monsters University.

Marisa and her family will be at the Strawberry Festival in Ventura, Ca.

But you?  You have no plans?  I have something for you to do!

Saturday, May 18 at 1 PM

Macy’s South Coast Plaza, Costa Mesa, CA

Macy’s will take to the highways and back roads of America for a national food truck tour making its way across the country, serving up the best of America’s cuisine created by icons of the Macy’s Culinary Council and featuring hot dogs and ice cream.  And this Saturday, May 18th they will be in Costa Mesa Ca.

If you go send me a picture via Twitter or FaceBook.  And I will send you one of MonstersU.

In case you live under a rock, yes I am getting paid.  Did I mention I am going to Alaska in a few months?

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Piece of Cake

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Private Selection for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

I love to bake.  Cookies, cakes, puddings, whatever your pleasure I enjoy making it.  Thankfully, I rarely eat what I bake.

But sometimes there isn’t enough time to bake something from scratch.  Sometimes you want instant gratification.  That’s where the sponsor of this post comes in.

Private Selection is a premium private label brand carried exclusively at the Kroger stores (Ralphs out here on the west coast, Smith’s Fred Meyer elsewhere).  I’ve told you about their products before, chips, meats, snacks and now we are going to talk about cake!

Private Selection™ Upside Down Cakes make it as easy as1-2-3 to bring a gourmet experience to any meal or occasion.  Made with only the finest ingredients, they elevate dessert to the next level with rich flavors, indulgent aromas and a beautiful presentation.

Private Selection Their cakes are a premium quality without the premium price, they come in 3 flavors – Amber Honey Apple slice, Double Chocolate Molten and German Chocolate Fudge.  These aren’t your grandmother’s upside down cakes.

To help you try them you can get a Private Selection Upside Down Cakes coupon just for spreading the love.

*The coupon ends June 2, 2013.  Official Rules. In order to load these coupons to your card, you will need to log in to your Kroger (or local affiliate store) account or set up an account and enter your card number.  Limit one use per digital coupon.  Digital offers are not eligible on Manager’s Specials, cannot be combined with manufacturer paper coupons on the purchase of a single item and do not double.  Not all items are available in all stores.  A limit of 150 coupons can be loaded per household at one time.

Once you have your llimit of coupons go to http://www.privateselection.com/store-locator/ to find the store closest to you.

And one last thing……take a bite for me.

Check out Private Selection Upside Down Cakes on Facebook and Private Selection Upside Down Cakes on Pinterest.

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Knott Your Average Mother’s Day

Mrs. Knott’s Chicken Dinner Restaurant has been a favorite family destination for Mother’s Day for over 70 years and this year they are offering moms free admission to Knott’s Berry Farm with their brunch purchase.

KBFBrunch

This year Knott’s Mother’s Day Brunch will be offered at Mrs. Knott’s Chicken Dinner Restaurant, Spurs Chophouse and Wilderness Dance Hall all of which will include all of mom’s favorites including a breakfast station featuring made to order omelets, Belgium waffles, and cheese blintzes with Boysenberry sauce.  The carving station will be presenting roasted turkey, honey glazed ham, and prime rib carved to order.  Hot buffet items will include filet of salmon, sweet hickory pork ribs, old fashioned apple stuffing, cheese enchiladas, vegetarian lasagna and of course, Mrs. Knott’s famous fried chicken.  Knott’s Mother’s Day Brunch also includes unlimited champagne.

 

Knott’s Mother’s Day Brunch prices are $32.95 for Adults, $24.95 for Seniors (62+) and $17.95 for Children (3 -11).  Every mom in the party will receive a voucher for a free ticket to Knott’s Berry Farm, valid May 12, 2013 only. Reservation for Knott’s Mother’s Day Brunch can be made by calling (714) 220-5055.

For more information on all Knott’s has to offer, visit www.knotts.com.

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Protein Makes Perfect

MPE_COR_M36126_A.R3Award-winning actress Salma Hayek gives fans a playful behind-the-scenes look at the way she and her family start each day in her latest ad with the National Milk Mustache “got milk?®” campaign. As part of the ongoing campaign, Salma’s third ad reveals her secret to fueling active successful days – starting every day with milk’s high-quality protein.

Salma knows one of the best ways to be sure her family has energy and valuable nutrients they need to take on the day is by serving milk at breakfast. An 8 oz. glass of milk is packed with nine essential nutrients, including eight grams of high-quality protein. Protein at breakfast can help power you through the morning. Milk is a delicious, easy and affordable way to send your kids out the door with what they need to start the day off right.

To celebrate this, we’re hosting a “Protein Makes Perfect” Twitter sweepstakes this week (March 18-22)! We’re inviting fans to share by tweeting their ideas and thoughts about what makes a perfect morning by using the hashtag #ProteinMakesPerfect.

BR1E3315_2Last year I had the chance to meet Ms. Hayek and see the unveiling of her first Got Milk poster.  I have been an avid milk drinker for all of my life.  Honestly not for the “health” aspects of it but because I enjoy the taste.  The fact that I receive many of my nutrients from milk is just a bonus.

One of you lucky readers will receive a Protein Makes Perfect gift basket containing:

  • Coffee mug
  • Milk frother
  • Spa robe
  • Eye mask
  • Milk Jug Vase with artificial flowers

Everything you need for a relaxing morning.  All you have to do is enter below using the Rafflecopter widget.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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Pistachio Day aka An Excuse to Mop the Floor

Pistachio nuts in and out of the shell

Pistachio nuts in and out of the shell (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today is National Pistacio Day and someone sent me two bags of nuts to help commemorate.

First a little pistachio education.

During the 1880s, imported pistachios were popular in the USA, especially with Middle Eastern immigrants. The pistachio received further distribution through vending machines installed in underground train stations, bars, restaurants and other common locations. “A dozen for a nickel” soon developed into a familiar slogan.

It was recognized that California’s Central Valley – due to its fertile soil, hot, dry climate and moderately cold winters – offered the ideal growing conditions for the nut.

In 1929, American botanist William E. Whitehouse journeyed to Persia (modern day Iran) to collect pistachios. This pursuit came to a close in 1930, when he returned to the USA with a collection of approximately 20 pounds (10 kilograms) of individually selected nuts.

Pistachios are wind pollinated, as opposed to bee pollinated. Just one male tree is required to pollinate up to 30 female trees.

Pistachio trees take seven to 10 years to mature

From its first commercial crop in 1976 of 1.5 million pounds (680 tons) to the record 2007 crop of over 415 million pounds (188,241 metric tons), success has built upon success.

This increase in total crop has been mirrored by increasing production per acre, from 1,468 pounds per acre in 1982 to over 3,615 pounds per acre in 2007.

California comprises 98.5% of the total with over 250,000 acres planted throughout 22 counties.

There are 850 producers in the United States and the annual “farm gate value”* of pistachios represents more than $1.16 billion to the California economy

For more info visit American Pistachio Growers- http://americanpistachios.org/

Now for the fun part.  I perused Pinterest for HOURS looking at all things pistachio.  Unfortunately most of the recipes on there used pistachio flavored pudding instead of real honest to goodness pistacios.  I thought of maybe making some Baklava (I do live amongst the second largest Armenian poplulation outside of Armenia), but it is way more trouble than I have time.

I decided to go with something easy, pistachio brittle.  Or so I thought.

photo by Kat Teusch stolen from EPicurious.com

photo by Kat Teusch stolen from Epicurious.com

Here is the original recipe from Epicurious:

 

  • vegetable oil cooking spray
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup dry-roasted shelled unsalted pistachios

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; lightly coat paper with vegetable oil cooking spray. In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, bring 1 cup sugar, 1/4 cup light corn syrup, 1/4 cup water and 2 tablespoons unsalted butter to a simmer; cook, stirring often, until mixture is a medium caramel color, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon baking soda (mixture will foam), 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract and 1 cup dry-roasted shelled unsalted pistachios. Pour onto baking sheet; spread into an even layer. Cool completely. Break into 24 pieces

Sounds easy right?  Not so much.

On the good side, my floor is now clean.  Well, at least the patch that everything spilled on to when my arthritis kicked in and my hand siezed up and I dropped the entire cookie sheet and everything splattered everywhere.

Maybe next time.

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Happy Birthday to ME!

Adrienne Birthday redeux

Nice Work if you can get it

I took a day off today from the roller rink.  But I didn’t taake a day off of work.  I was asked to work a trade show this weekend and it is one that I have enjoyed working every year.  The International Salon and Spa Expo (ISSE) in Lonng Beach is an amazing exhibition for Beauty Professionals and for me it is a chance to reunite with some friends and co-workers I haven’t seen in a while.

When I got the schedule for the show it included the line “get to baking Missy”.  My co-workers enjoy my cookies and “experiments”.  They are the ones who tried my mini peanut butter muffins with a mini Reese’s cup inside.  They were also the guinea pigs for my Bacon Chocolate Chip cookies.  this morning I whipped up a batch of Walnut Chocolate Chip since that is the favorite of my supervisor.  I have to do the peanut butter ones for another supervisor, but I am thinking I want to also try out something new.

I bought some mini Rolo candies.  Rolo’s were one of my mom’s favorite candies.  She used to hide them in her dresser drawer (obviously not a very good hiding place).  I am thinking I want to put the Rolo’s inside of a brownie.  I plan on making the brownies in the mini muffin pan (best $10 I spent in a while).  My decision is whether I put the rolo in the batter before it goes in the oven or I pop it in just as I take them out like I do with the resse’s cup.

Has anyone ever tried this?  I am too tired and too lazy to google it or pinterest it right now.  I want the gooey caramel in the middle but am afraid of the chocolate melting too much during the cooking process and changing the consistency and taste of the brownie.  Doesn’t everyone stress over stuff like this?

Can you tell I am tired?  Maybe I should focus on getting to bed instead.

Oh by the way, the reason for this post.

Most of my co-workers are excited to work this show because they can take advantage of the amazing deals on beauty products on the show floor.  We all know how I react to that.  I could care less.

But since you can’t make it to ISSE this year (or ever) you can always check out this 15% off at soap.com deal.

 

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Bet You Didn’t Know You Could Find Good Food at Macy’s

Trust me, I didn’t either.

But I got an invitation via the Be Everywhere Society to attend an event down in San Diego and decide to drag Desiree along with me.

Macy’s Culinary Council has great guest chefs come in to their cooking schools and offer fabulous tips and tricks to customers for a nominal fee.  At the event we attended the $5 fee collected from everyone went directly to the local food bank.

We were lucky enough to see Chef Nany Silverton, co-owner of Osteria Mozza, Pizzeria Mozza and Mozza2Go in Los Angeles, as well as Osteria Mozza and Pizzeria Mozza in Singapore. She is the founder of the La Brea Bakery and formerly owned and operated Campanile restaurant. She is the author of several books includingNancy Silverton’s Sandwich Book, Nancy Silverton’s Breads from the La Brea Bakery, Desserts and, most recently, The Mozza Cookbook.

She focused on salads and dressings for this class (you know I was thrilled [insert sarcasm font]).  She made a basic lemon vinaigrette and then transformed that in to 3 different dressings for each of her salads – recipes to follow.

The next event at the San Diego store is this Saturday, January 26, Noon.  A wine experience with Lisa Redwine (yes, that is her real name), advanced sommelier from “The Shores” in La Jolla, “Valentines Day Vino”.  She will be putting together magical food and wine pairings that will spark your passion.

If you don’t live close enough to San Diego, there are events happening all around the country.  Simply check out Macy’s event page and find one near you.

Stay tuned for the recipes by Chef Nancy Silverton!

Compensation will be received for this post, but I paid for the gas to go down to San Diego so it really kinda evens itself out.

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80 Calories of Hungry Chocolate for Breakfast

Hungry Girl Lisa Lillien & Fiber One

I was invited to an event last week and unfortunately had to cancel at the last minute.  But I really wanted you to know about the product so I am still going to post even though I didn’t attend.

Chocolate for breakfast? Fiber One® is celebrating the New Year with NEW 80 Calories Chocolate Squares, a lightly sweetened cereal with a touch of cocoa that will hit shelves this month. Fiber One 80 Calories Chocolate Squares offers the most fiber per serving of leading chocolate cereals in the marketplace. Offering a delicious, chocolate experience with a “sweet” calorie count and 9g of fiber per serving, chocolate lovers can satisfy their cravings and hunger without sacrificing their New Year’s weight management resolutions. Fiber helps you feel full which makes it easier stick to your diet and lose weight without feeling as hungry.

Research shows that keeping weight management resolutions can be difficult. One-third of Americans have made a New Year’s resolution to lose weight in the last five years, but nearly half of those who made that pledge were unsuccessful.* To help people stay on track, Fiber One and Lisa Lillien, author and founder of Hungry Girl, have teamed up to share weight management tips and delicious, one-of-a-kind recipes using a variety of Fiber One products that will help consumers reach their dieting goals.

“One of the best weight management tips I can give is this: Don’t skip breakfast. It’s the most important meal of the day, and you don’t need to sacrifice your cravings to keep it diet-friendly,” says Lisa. “Fiber One 80 Calories Chocolate Squares is a guilt-free, fiber-packed and easy breakfast choice, and a great way to keep your diet on track. When choosing a cereal, look for one that not only tastes great, but is also high in fiber to help you feel full.  Fiber One 80 Calories Chocolate Squares fits the bill!”

Benefits of Fiber

Eating enough fiber is a major component of a healthy diet. In fact, fiber helps satisfy your hunger, because it produces a feeling of fullness making it easier to eat less and lose weight without feeling as hungry. However, 90 percent of Americans don’t get the recommended amount of fiber each day. By knowing which foods are high in fiber, like Fiber One 80 Calories Chocolate Squares with 35 percent of the recommended Daily Value of fiber, fitting fiber into your diet can be easier. Plus it’s a delicious way to start the day.

“Starting a weight management plan can be challenging and sticking to it can be even harder,” said Katie Johnsrud at Fiber One. “We want to support these efforts by providing people with a delicious and guilt-free way to start their day. With Fiber One 80 Calories Chocolate Squares and other delicious varieties of high-fiber cereals, managing your weight doesn’t have to be about what you give up.”

Fiber One 80 Calories Chocolate Squares cereal is available at major grocery stores nationwide starting in January 2013, at a suggested retail price of $4.29. Fiber One offers eight varieties of high-fiber cereals including NEW 80 Calories Chocolate Squares, 80 Calories Honey Squares, Original, Nutty Clusters & Almonds, Honey Clusters®, Raisin Bran Clusters®, Frosted Shredded Wheat and Caramel Delight™.

Visit FiberOne.com for more information about Fiber One Cereals and other Fiber One products.

Hungry Girl Lisa Lillien was nice enough to leave me a little hello message:

 

 


 

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Live Mas With Taco Bell

Taco Bell (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I am a fast food eater.  When my kids were young and we were going between activity to activity every day in the car, I admit we did a lot of fast food eating.  It was no big deal for me to ask which drive thru do you want tonight and sometimes we would go to multiple because not everyone wanted the same thing.

Part of the reason for that was my son often wanted Taco Bell.  Did I mention OFTEN?  I love taco Bell and my daughter tolerated it, but we also liked something different everyday.  Not him, he could have had it ever single day if I let him (face it, sometimes I did).

What do Adam’s eating habits have to do with “Live Mas” you ask?  And what the heck is “Live Mas”?

Beginning today, Taco Bell® is going to show the world just that as it unveils a 60-second online teaser video in anticipation of its 60-second brand Super Bowl commercial.  The LIVE MÁS® brand commercial is titled “Viva Young” and is scheduled to debut during the third quarter of the game broadcasted Feb. 3, 2013 on the CBS Television Network.

In the spot, main character, 87 year-old Bernie Goldblatt along with his friends, will take viewers on an unforgettable night depicting that anyone at any age can LIVE MÁS®. The commercial will be set to the music of Taco Bell Feed the Beat® artist and six-time GRAMMY® Award nominee fun.’s “We Are Young,” which will be sung in Spanish.

“Our hope is that our consumers will see themselves in this ad. They tell us that Taco Bell is about memories and experiences, and things they like to share with their friends,” said Brian Niccol, Chief Marketing & Innovation Officer, Taco Bell Corp. “We believe that advertising on the world biggest stage, the Super Bowl, was the ideal way to share these experiences with our fans, while also providing further context into the mindset of Taco Bell and what it means to LIVE MÁS.”

The teaser below is entitled “Grandpa Goes Wild.”  It shows Goldblatt sneaking his suped-up motorized scooter into a football stadium to let loose, do some tricks like making “donuts” on the field, knocking over water coolers, yardage signs and a tackling dummy, all while escaping from security.  Just as I was thinking Icould see my dad doing that on his “scooter” the “DO NOT DO THIS AT HOME” warning flashed across the screen.  Perfect timing!

 

 

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