Uncategorized

0 1646

ORLANDO, Fla. (February 26, 2013) – Orlando’s new favorite neighborhood restaurant, Marlow’s Tavern, is bringing NOLA to Central Florida with its “Bayou ‘n Bourbon” menu full of cuisine from the Deep South. Now through March 25, Marlow’s Tavern at Pointe Orlando is featuring a special menu full of jazzed up dishes and classic cocktails that will take diners taste buds on a trip to the Big Easy.

“The flavors of New Orleans are distinct and irresistible, much like the chef-driven food and hand-crafted cocktails found on our everyday menu,” says John C. Metz, executive chef and co-founder of Marlow’s Tavern. “We want our guests to experience Louisiana cooking with a Marlow’s twist,” he adds.

The “Bayou ‘n Bourbon” menu includes dishes which are offered daily for lunch and dinner:

  • Roast chicken and shrimp gumbo – a Louisiana tradition with a Marlow’s twist (6.5)
  • Fiery crawfish fondue – a rich, creamy blend of crawfish, Gruyere cheese, fresh herbs and spices served with ciabatta crostini  (9)
  • Honey Jack chicken and Andouille flatbread – blackened Prestige Farms chicken, spicy andouille sausage, caramelized red onion and pepper jack cheese with sweet and spicy Honey Jack on crisp flatbread  (9.5)
  • “Nawlins-style” po’boy – tempura battered shrimp and crawfish, sweet slaw, shredded lettuce, Roma tomato and smoked chili cream on a soft Cuban roll (12.5)
  • Bayou burger – fresh ground beef all “jazzed up” with andouille sausage, cheddar cheese, crawdaddies, lettuce, Roma tomato, red onion and house-made Creole remoulade on a toasted onion roll (12)
  • Deconstructed jambalaya – grilled Prestige Farms chicken, andouille sausage, house-made dirty rice and traditional crawfish Creole sauce (14)
  • Sweet Bourbon St. rib-eye – blackened Jack Daniels honey-blazed rib-eye served with tiny asparagus and a crispy sweet potato cake (26)
A Bourbon Street meal is not complete without a sweet treat. Marlow’s offers honey bourbon bread pudding, made with honey and vanilla crème brûlée, soaked ciabatta and a splash of Jack Daniel’s Honey (7) to round out the Louisiana inspired meal.
Guests will need to hold on to their beads while enjoying Marlow’s spirited take on classic New Orleans-style cocktails and drinks:
  • “Pat’s” Marlow’s Hurricane – a New Orleans tradition borrowed from Pat O’Brien’s with Bacardi light rum, fresh orange juice and a floater of Bacardi 151 (8)
  • Ramos Gin Fizz – Van Gogh dry gin, house-made sour, light cream and orange flower water, shaken 50 times until frothy and served icy (8.5)
  • Cajun Cosmo – Absolut Mango and Pepper, cranberry, triple sec and fresh lime (9)
  • Abita Restoration – the Louisiana “home brew” with intense hops partners perfectly for spicy Cajun dishes (5.5)
About Marlow’s Tavern at Pointe Orlando
Marlow’s Tavern is located at 9101 International Drive at Pointe Orlando. For more information and to become an Insider for specials and the latest news, go towww.MarlowsTavern.com, on Facebook and on Twitter.
The location at Pointe Orlando seats up to 215 guests with indoor seating as well as an all-weather patio.  The new Marlow’s Tavern was specifically designed with guests’ comfort in mind. The tavern’s warm and inviting interior features exposed brick walls, dark wood accents, large leather booths, communal tables and an extensive fully covered patio.
The restaurant serves lunch, happy hour, and dinner daily Sunday through Thursday 11:30 a.m. to midnight and Friday and Saturday 11:30 a.m. to 1 a.m.  Guests will enjoy live entertainment Thursday through Sunday each week.

0 1336

Urbanspoon has recently undertaken the largest ever review of American dining behavior data, taking into consideration over 600,000 restaurants, millions of reviews, and a billion pageviews’ worth of user behavior. The result is a list of 250 dining establishments that received the most attention from professional food critics, food bloggers, and the general dining public across Urbanspoon’s website and smartphone apps.

The list represents those super hot, $$$$ restaurants that received the most coverage across the the foodie community as well as from regular diners. Getting a Friday night table will require some advance planning, but the sheer popularity of these destinations ensures you’ll be treated to a memorable gastronomical event.

Seven restaurants were chosen for the Orlando area, many of which were blogged about it here on TastyChomps.com! They are as follows:

Orlando, FL

I will have to check out Deep Blu Seafood, Boma, and Johnnie’s Hideaway soon! I am surprised Deep Blue and Fogo de Chao are already on this list as they have opened relatively recently, but maybe that is why they are on the radar with new and recent posts about them on the interwebs. There is probably no small coincidence that three of the above listed are a meat lover’s paradise (Fogo, Boma, and Texas De Brazil), who could deny their love of endless buffet of delicious, savory grilled meats?

 

Congrats to all!

For the full list, visit http://www.urbanspoon.com/blog/82/Americas-Most-Popular-High-End-Restaurants.html

0 1269

Through Levy’s ‘Farm to Fork’ program, fresh produce is provided to Amway Center.

In addition, Nuchia Foods, the leading provider for gluten-tolerant items will provide fans with alternatives to traditional stadium dining. These items include:

Vegetarian and vegan offerings including the Veggie Chopped Salad and Veggie Burger
Locally-sourced produce and cheeses
Handheld fruit and veggie cups for healthy on-the-go snacks
Gluten-free fan favorites including hot dogs, snacks and dessert

These healthy and fit items are just a part of the great food being served to fans at Amway Center this year. New menu items for the season include:

Florida favorites like the Shrimp Burger and Pressed Cuban Sandwich
Low calorie options like the Chipotle Chicken Salad and Grilled Chicken Sandwich

Photobucket

Photobucket

Gluten Free Cobb Salad

Photobucket

Black Bean Veggie Burger

0 912

COCINA|214 Expands Hours – Adds Monday Dining

Popular Winter Park Tex-Mex restaurant & bar now open seven days a week
Winter Park, Fla. – (Feb. 16, 2012) – You can now have your favorite 214 Skinny Margarita, handmade Guacamole or fresh, open-face Fried Rock Shrimp Tacos without having to think about what day it is.

214 Skinny Margarita
COCINA|214, the popular Tex-Mex restaurant in the heart of Winter Park, is now open on Mondays. The change begins February 20th.

The additional day is in response to customer demand, said business manager Lambrine Macejewski.

“We want to be here for our customers. Having an off day on Monday was leading to customer confusion. Not a Monday would go by that we did not have someone knocking on our door wanting to dine,” said Macejewski.

COCINA|214, a 171-seat restaurant located at 151 E. Welbourne Ave. (behind Williams-Sonoma), will now be open:

Mon. – Sat. 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Sun. 11:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Bar open late Fri. and Sat.

To celebrate, on Mondays COCINA|214 is offering 214 Rocks or Frozen Margaritas for $5 all day, as well as $3 super-chilled draft beers and $3 well drinks from 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. as part of happy hour.

COCINA|214 was recently named by the Orlando Business Journal as the best place to have dinner with a client. The restaurant and bar also has an impressive resume of business and special occasion gatherings because of its large private dining room that can seat more than 60 guests. COCINA|214 offers one of the largest corporate dining rooms in downtown Winter Park.

“We have been open nearly a year now. Executive Chef Helene Garrovillo and our culinary team is putting out fantastic food. We have added the staff and we are ready to go every day,” said Macejewski.

To see the menu or to learn more on COCINA|214, visit http://cocina214.com/.

About COCINA|214
COCINA|214 is located at 151 E. Welbourne Ave. (directly behind Williams-Sonoma). COCINA|214 has award-winning Tex-Mex and Mexican favorites prepared fresh daily. Its full service bar serves a selection of specialty drinks and margaritas. The beer on tap is poured at a super-chilled 29 degrees. COCINA|214 is open seven days a week, offering lunch and dinner, with complementary valet parking for dinner. You can contact COCINA|214 by phone at 407-790-7997 or on the web at cocina214.com. For special occasions and corporate events email party@cocina214.com. To get the latest news on COCINA|214 follow our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Media Contact:

Will Wellons or Cori Pope
Office: 407-339-0879
Cell: 407-462-2718
will@wellonscommunications.com
cori@wellonscommunications.com

0 1601

Fall is in the air. As we get ready for the autumn harvest, many local restaurants are starting to bring out their new menus featuring fall squash, pumpkin, and other dishes in season. The Capital Grille recently invited me to check out their current fall lunch and share with our readers. Many visitors don’t realize that the Capital Grille is not just about awesome steaks, they have an awesome lunch menu as well. Check it out!

The Capital Grille Announces New Fall Flavors
on Their $18 3-Course Lunch Menu
Photobucket

The Fall Lunch “Plates” menu kicked off on September 26, offering guests new customizable combinations of soup or salad, a sandwich and a side – all for $18. Guests of The Capital Grille can choose from nine “plates” offerings – three soups/salads, three sandwiches and three sides, including “Knife and Fork” BLT, creamy Porcini Bisque and Roasted Butternut Squash with Cranberry Chutney.

“Our new Knife and Fork BLT adds a signature twist to this classic sandwich favorite. A generous portion of crisp bacon is paired with a Grana Padano Cheese Crisp and Heirloom Tomatoes on a bed of lettuce, topped with a unique black pepper and chive aioli,” notes Executive Chef Matthew Price. “We are also pleased to offer dishes made with seasonal vegetables like mushrooms and butternut squash. Our creamy Porcini Bisque captures the rich flavor of the mushrooms in a smooth, velvety soup. We added our special twist to Roasted Butternut Squash by pairing it with Cranberry Chutney for a balance of flavors that is sure to please.”

The Capital Grille also features traditional lunch menu favorites like French Onion Soup, The Grille’s Signature Cheeseburger, Ribeye Steak Sandwich with Caramelized Onions and Havarti or the Lobster and Crab Burger, among other classics.

Photobucket
Porcini bisque – Porcini mushrooms with chive oil, a creamy coffee-like taste rich in flavor sherry wine, one of my favorite new items on the menu at The Capital Grille lunch special!

Photobucket

Clam chowder – chunks of potatoes and clams
Photobucket
BLT Knife and Fork – Calorganics reds on the vine tomatoes, this is what tomatoes should taste like, fresh and real and full of flavor.
Photobucket
Roasted Butternut Squash with Cranberry Chutney

Photobucket
Truffle Fries
Photobucket
Lobster and Crab burger
Photobucket
Fresh green beans
Photobucket
Ribeye Steak Sandwich with Caramelized Onions and Havarti

Photobucket
Coconut Creme Pie

The Capital Grille is located at 9101 International Drive, Suite 1000. Reservations can be made by calling 407-370-4392 or by visiting www.TheCapitalGrille.com. In addition to its main dining room, The Capital Grille also features private dining rooms for up to 36 guests, as well as a Chef’s Table accommodating up to 10 guests, with a frontline view of the open kitchen. Chef is pleased to create special menus for private dining events.

1 13050

Longhorn Steakhouse, which has recently been going under construction to get a new facelift to their older structures and is a member of the Darden Restaurant Group, has come out with a new special.

This fall, Longhorn recently introduced a new three course dinner for two menu special for $29.99

Photobucket
 
Menu Specials

 

LongHorn Steakhouse was founded in 1981 by George McKerrow, Jr. and his father. McKerrow was a former manager at “Steak and Ale”. The first location, originally called LongHorn Steaks Restaurant & Saloon, opened on Peachtree Street in Atlanta, Georgia. It was a former antique store then a porn peep show place. The walls were still painted black and some of the booths were divided by recycled black partitions. He filled it with steer heads and western paraphernalia. The Longhorn featured top quality steaks grilled in a butter sauce.

longhorn-steakhouse-steakhouse-dinner-for-two-large-8

It was across from a very popular restaurant, Harrison’s on Peachtree. Harrison’s was the favorite hang out of Atlanta Journal and Constitution columnist Ron Hudspeth and Lewis Grizzard. Hudspeth regularly featured quotes from “Pete the barkeep” at Harrison’s. Harrison’s had a very limited bar menu. So regulars ventured over to the Longhorn for a quality steak after a night of drinking. However, in January 1982, a sudden snow storm that became known as SnowJam 82, trapped the area’s commuter population within the city limits and McKerrow offered $1 drinks and menu specials to the stranded motorists. Hudspeth featured it in his column. A legend was born. This helped turn the struggling restaurant around.

By 1990, the franchise expanded further south. It primarily has locations throughout the Eastern United States. It also has a few locations in the Midwest, Southwest, and Puerto Rico.[citation needed]

In August 2007, LongHorn Steakhouse, formerly owned and operated by RARE Hospitality International Inc., was purchased by Darden Restaurants, Inc.

75946 Carousel Promo 15_1

he restaurant is best known for serving various kinds of steak, including its “Flo’s Filet”. In addition to steak, the menu also includes: ribs, chicken, salmon, lobster, shrimp, and salads. Appetizers include their “Texas Tonion” and “Wild West Shrimp”; and side dishes are also served. The restaurant offers a full bar with draft and bottled beer, wine, and several signature margaritas. A lunch menu that includes soups, salads, sandwiches, and hamburgers is available.

 

0 1037

The good folks at Orlando Home Show are offering a special $4 discount off full-price $10 admission when purchasing online at www.orlandohomeshow.com and using the promo code “BLOGDEAL” at check out.

We are also giving away two free tickets to the show this weekend! Leave a comment below about what you look forward to seeing at the Orlando Home Show with your e-mail and the winner will be chosen tonight at 9pm using a random generator! Make sure you like our facebook too but not necessary to win. We’ll send you an email to let you know you won tonight!

Press release follows below

ORLANDO HOME SHOW RETURNS OCTOBER 7-9, 2011
BRAVO’s Top Chef Just Desserts Winner Yigit Pura to Appear

ORLANDO, Fla. – One of the region’s most anticipated fall events will be here in no time: the 2011 Orlando Home Show Show, returning October 7-9 to the Orange County Convention Center’s North/South complex off Universal Boulevard in Hall South B. Central Florida’s original, most-established home show boasts the area’s largest selection of the latest products and services for virtually every area of the home, indoors and out. Consumers can find inspiration, celebrity tips, must-see features, great entertainment and one-stop-shopping all under one roof.

New at this year’s show will be the creation of a one-of-a-kind sand sculpture.

Guests will be in awe when they watch an artisan from The Sand Sculpture Company — a 7-time Guinness World Record holder — create a unique work of art on the show floor. Construction begins on Friday and continues throughout the weekend, so guests should get there early for the best view! Returning crowd pleasers at the show include celebrity appearances and the edible Orlando Cooking Stage with many of the area’s top chefs dishing up delicious samples and tips.

According to research conducted by Marketplace Events, the nation’s largest producer of home shows, including the Orlando Home Show and the Central Florida Home & Garden Show, consumers continue to invest in their homes for their current enjoyment, as well as make smart improvements to help sell in the future.

“Local residents can find inspiration throughout our show floor and meet with hundreds of experts to get the most bang for their home improvement buck,” said Cristian Moore, Orlando show manager for Marketplace Events. “Our show has something for everyone and offers a fun day out.”

And a sweet one, too. BRAVO’s Top Chef Just Desserts winner Yigit Pura will bring his tantalizing talents to the edible Orlando Cooking Stage on Saturday at 12 noon and 3:00 p.m. and Sunday at 1:00 and 3:00 p.m.

Attendees can learn from other culinary experts and dig into delicious samples throughout the weekend at the edible Orlando Cooking Stage. Chefs from The Crooked Spoon, Big Wheel Provisions, The Rusty Old Hickory Steakhouse at Gaylord Palms Resort, edible Orlando and Whole Foods Market will appear, plus healthy cooking expert Charles Mattocks, known as “The Poor Chef,” and Real Radio 104.1’s self-proclaimed grill master, Dirty Jim, will also appear.

Guests can “spice up” their Saturday early evening at 6:00 p.m. with a one-hour live performance, followed by an autograph signing session, by Sony Music Latin recording artist Fabi?n. Presented by Jose 98.1, DJ Victor Pacheco “El Pache” will host this exclusive event, free with paid admission.

If you’re a steadfast DIY-er, you’re in luck: Dr. Fix-It, a guest columnist appearing every Sunday in the Orlando Sentinel, will present on the Home Improvement Stage on Friday and Saturday at 5:00 p.m. and Sunday at 11:00 a.m. with tips on tackling your most important projects while saving a bundle in the process.

And speaking of saving money, Josh Elledge of SavingsAngel.com® appears on the Home Improvement Stage at 12 noon on Friday and Sunday at 1:00 pm on Saturday with advice on “extreme couponing” without the time, hassle and waste usually associated with coupon-savvy shopping. From energy savings tips to fall entertaining ideas, guests can pick up helpful advice from a variety of other experts presenting throughout the weekend on the Home Improvement Stage.

Other experts can help you save in the garden, too. Fall offers some of the best gardening weather of the year in Central Florida and now is a great time to prune and plan before winter’s chill arrives. Show attendees can meet some of the area’s leading experts in gardening, landscaping, water features and supplies, including A & R Landscaping and Lighting, Knox Nursery, Pondtastic Water Gardens and Smithwell. Landscape Supply will also make an encore appearance at the show with a huge retail display of garden supplies, from mulch to trimmers.

Need home improvement advice but worried about missing the big game? Catch all of the college football action on Saturday and NFL games on Sunday at the Home Show End Zone, provided by the Home Theatre Geeks, Coast to Coast Communications and custom-themed tables by OFAB – perfect for putting your feet up after walking the show.

Guests can also shop, compare and save at hundreds of exhibits with the industry’s latest products and services for home and garden, plus enter into contest and prize drawings.

Show hours are Friday and Saturday, 10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m, and Sunday, 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. Tickets are available at the door, and are $10 for adults, $5 for seniors (60+; this discount is ONLY valid at the door and no other discounts apply), $5 for students 13-18 (ID required), and free for children 12 years and younger.

 Advance tickets can be purchased online for a $3 discount off full-price $10 admission at www.OrlandoHomeShow.com. Convenient on-site parking is available adjacent to the Orange County Convention Center off Universal Boulevard, and is $8 per car. Consumers can get a free parking pass (while supplies last) through the show’s partnership with Hometalk.com. (Visit www.OrlandoHomeShow.com to obtain a pass).

For more information, visit www.OrlandoHomeShow.com, or call 877-871-SHOW (7469). The Orlando Home Show and its spring sister show, the Central Florida Home & Garden Show (May 25-28, 2012) are both produced by Marketplace Events.

0 732






Orlando Magical Dining Month is still going on this month! It ends at the end of September so make sure you check it out before its too late! All throughout this month you can get three course pre-fixe meals for $30 at select area restaurants. Visit www.orlandomagicaldining.com for details.

In order to spice things up with the month and encourage our readers to check out the restaurants, Visit Orlando is partnering up with Tasty Chomps! to provide gift certificates for dinner for two to the famous Le Coq Au Vin restaurant (http://www.lecoqauvinrestaurant.com/index.html)

Le Coq Au Vin is a French restaurant and winner of many Orlando Sentinel Foodie Awards, rated by Zagat and Fodor’s. Le Coq au Vin Restaurant was among the first, open in 1976, and is still among the best Zagat America’s top restaurants 2009. Le Coq Au Vin restaurant is now owned and operated by Chef Reimund Pitz and his wife Sandy, in partnership with Chef Louis and Magdalena Perrotte. The cuisine reflects traditional classical cooking techniques as well as different cultural influences.

In order to enter the giveaway contest, please purview the OrlandoMagicalDining.com website to answer these questions and e-mail the responses to tastychomps@gmail.com with the subject heading “Orlando Magical Dining Month Contest!” to enter to win:

1. How many restaurants (including the number of multiple locations of a restaurant brand) are featured in the Orlando Magical Dining Month event?

2. Chef Brandon McGlammery is the executive chef for which Winter Park area restaurant?

3. What and where was Chef Juan Mercado of the Prickly Pear’s first professional kitchen job?

4. What charity does the Orlando Magical Dining Month benefit?

5. What day is the last day for Orlando Magical Dining Month?

Deadline to Enter: 11:59pm September 20 2011
Thank you for your participation!!

0 1566
Photobucket



Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza, out on Sand Lake Road in “Restaurant Row” near the Whole Foods Market, recently introduced their new Roasted Cauliflower pizza and craft beers to the line up. I personally never thought much of the cauliflower: it always reminded me of a color-less broccoli that had been cooking for too long so it falls apart so easily. In fact, it belongs to the species Brassica oleracea which also includes cabbage, brussels sprouts, kale, broccoli, and collard greens. But Anthony’s has come up with a way to actually make the cauliflower quite delectable by putting on their pizza, roasted and with no tomato sauce. The roasted cauliflower pizza is made with romano and mozzarella cheese, topped off with bread crumbs and olive oil and garlic.


Photobucket


yes please.

Photobucket

Try it with some of their craft beer like the Dogfish Head Imperial India Pale Ale


Photobucket

or the chicken wings!

0 965
I recently received these free samples from Two Degrees, a socially conscious natural food bar that donates nutrition packs to children starving around the world through the World Health Organization. The bars I tried included chocolate peanut, apple pecan, and cherry almonds, all made with quinoa, chia and mullet whole grains. They were quite “healthy” tasting, a difference I could tell from the use of whole grain ingredients and natural foods. They are now available at Whole Food and you can read more about them below!

Photobucket

Photobucket
Photobucket

Two Degrees® now available at Whole Foods Market® 

Two Degrees, the food company on a mission to help feed the world’s 200+ million hungry children, announced today the availability of its all-natural food bars at Whole Foods Market stores nationwide. Two Degrees is the first food company to adopt the one-for-one business model of social giving, donating one medically-formulated nutrition pack to a malnourished child for every one bar sold.

The nutrition packs that Two Degrees donates are endorsed by the World Health Organization and have become the global standard for treating childhood malnutrition. They are 95 percent effective in curing malnutrition, but only a fraction of children in need actually receive them. With the simple purchase of Two Degrees food bars, everyday consumers can help bridge this gap.

Two Degrees food bars are developed by the former Creative Chef and Director of Product Development for Odwalla, Barr Hogen. The bars are all-natural, gluten-free, vegan and under 200 calories, and come in three flavors: Chocolate Peanut, Cherry Almond and Apple Pecan. Two Degrees will begin selling nut-free flavors later this year. Individual bars retail for $2.49 and a box of nine bars retails for $21.99.

People can also make a difference by giving Two Degrees virtual bars to friends by email or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/TwoDegrees. For every virtual bar given, Two Degrees donates a real nutrition pack to a malnourished child.

For more information and to locate your local Whole Foods Market selling Two Degrees, visit www.twodegreesfood.com.

0 809

Debi Dyer from Orlando, FL needs your vote to become a finalist and compete for the $1 million grand prize. The Pillsbury Bake-Off Contest is letting You Be the Judge!, allowing consumers a chance to choose who gets to go to the Bake-Off Contest finals.

Visit www.bakeoff.com for official rules and to vote for Debi’s Ginger-Coconut Bars as it faces off against Peanut Butter Crème Cookie Cups entered by Mary Fields of Gilbert, AZ. At the end of two weeks, the home cook whose recipe receives the most votes will become one of 100 talented finalists competing in the 45th Pillsbury Bake-Off Contest in Orlando, Florida from March 25-27, 2012.

The recipe is currently facing off on www.bakeoff.com against Mary Fields’ Peanut Butter Crème Cookie Cups. Voting is open for these recipes until 12:59 p.m. EST on September 1, at which point 2 new recipes will face off. Only 1 from each pair will take the 10 open finalist spots where they will join 90 others in March 2012. The final competition will take place at the Peabody Orlando hotel on March 25-27, 2012 where 100 finalists compete for the $1 million grand prize.

Ginger-Coconut Bars
Category: Sweet Treats
Eligible Ingredients: Pillsbury® Ready to Bake Refrigerated Sugar Cookies 16 oz (24 ct)
Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk
LAND O LAKES® Unsalted Butter
McCormick® Ground Ginger

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Start to Finish: 1 hour 55 minutes

1 package Pillsbury® Ready to Bake!™ refrigerated sugar cookies
2 cups flaked coconut
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 can (14 oz) Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk
1/4 cup LAND O LAKES® Unsalted or Salted Butter, melted
4 teaspoons McCormick® Ground Ginger
4 bars (1.55 oz each) Hershey’s® milk chocolate candy
1/3 cup crystallized ginger, finely chopped

Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 13×9-inch pan with Crisco® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray. Evenly arrange cookie dough rounds in pan; let stand 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in large bowl, combine coconut, cracker crumbs, sweetened condensed milk, butter and ground ginger; mix well (mixture will be thick). Press cookie dough evenly into pan. Drop coconut by small spoonfuls over cookie dough; carefully spread over dough.

Bake 33 to 37 minutes or until edges are golden brown.

Remove from oven to cooling rack. Break up chocolate and place over hot bars. Let stand 2 to 3 minutes. With spatula or knife, spread melted chocolate over bars. Sprinkle with crystallized ginger. Cool 30 minutes. Refrigerate 30 minutes to set chocolate.

For bars, cut into 6 rows by 4 rows. Store covered in refrigerator.

24 bars

Debi Dyer
Orlando, FL

1 760

First Annual OB3: Orlando Bourbon, Beer N’ Bites in Baldwin Park Sept. 24, 2011
Bourbon Sippin’, Beer Tastin’, Good Food…all for a Great Cause

Orlando, FL – July 21, 2011 – The producers of the Orlando Chili Cook-off, Events for Change, Inc., announce the first annual OB3: OrlandoBourbon, Beer N’ Bites taking place Saturday, September 24th, 2011 in Baldwin Park to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP). The WWP is an organization founded by veterans and friends who took action to help the injured service men and women who served for our country – they have helped countless numbers of veterans and their families adjust to civilian life.

Bourbon lovers, beer aficionados and foodies are invited to come out to Baldwin Park to sip, mingle and enjoy live, local music. Your $40 admission buys you a sampling glass so you can enjoy UNLIMITED sampling of beer and bourbon, along with “bites” from local restaurants.

OB3 admission includes:
    * A souvenir glass, with commemorative logo, for sampling
    * Unlimited Bourbon and Beer tastings
    * Delicious Bites! Enjoy a selection of food from some of Orlando’s best restaurants
    * Vote on your favorite “bite” and chow down on other food items for sale
    * Learn something new at the Tasting Theater from a local chef, master distiller or brew master
    * Listen to Live Music on the main stage all day
    * Like football? Watch college football on our giant screen!
    * Valet Parking and plenty of FREE Parking also available
    * Shuttle to Park Ave.Central Ave. and in-and-around Baldwin Park.

Founded by a group of Baldwin Park locals in 2009, Events for Change, Inc. operates under a “good times for a great cause” philosophy. With an end goal of raising at least $10,000 for Wounded Warrior Project (WWP), attendees at OB3 will get the chance to have fun while making a difference. “The event falls on the 10-year anniversary month of 9/11, so it’s a perfect time to give back to those who served our country,” Kenneth Roberts, Events for Change Founder explains. 

VIP tickets are available for $50 on a first come, first served basis (only 1,000 available). A VIP ticket holder receives a 5 oz. commemorative glass and special lanyard (for hands free drinking), a private bar with waitress service, two extra hours to sample bourbon and beer before the crowd arrives and special seating, right in the middle of the action.

Tickets can be purchased and additional information can be found at: www.ob3fest.com or at the official OB3 Headquarters, Paddy Murphy’s Irish Pub in Baldwin Park www.orginalpaddymurphys.com. Find us on Facebook at: OB3: Orlando Bourbon, Beer N’ Bites to stay updated as the event approaches.  

3 1497

http://www.strength.org/orlando/

Buy your ticket to the hottest food and wine event of 2011 and help fight childhood hunger.

Share Our Strength’s Taste of the Nation® is the nation’s premier culinary benefit, featuring top chefs and mixologists — all of whom are coming together to donate their time, talent and passion to end childhood hunger in America.
Join us for the 22nd Annual Taste of the Nation Orlando. Guests will sample delectable specialties and culinary sensations prepared by chefs from Central Florida’s leading restaurants. Showcasing their talent and creativity, the combination of presentation and taste are sure to make the evening unforgettable.
Please note: No one under the age of 21, including children in strollers accompanied by their parents, will be admitted to Taste of the Nation.

Date:

Saturday, August 6, 2011
6:00pm – 10:00pm

Tickets:

VIP Tickets: 6:00pm – 10:00pm, $150 each
includes reserved priority seating, early entry, and goody bags among the fabulous benefits!
General Admission: 6:45pm – 10:00pm, $100 each
includes access to the exquisite appetizers, entrees and desserts of over 30 of Central Florida’s leading restaurants and chefs, along with wine, coffee and beer

Attire:

Cocktail / Semi-Formal

Location:

Marriott World Center
8701 World Center Dr
Orlando, FL 32821
Take advantage of the special Taste of the Nation Orlando hotel rate here!
Beneficiaries
WHO WE HELP

Local Beneficiaries:

  • Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida – The Coalition’s mission is to address the needs of the homeless in our community and to serve as a catalyst for community collaboration to end homelessness. To do this, we strive to return homeless individuals to lives of independence through case management, education and job training.
  • Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida – Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida is a private, nonprofit organization that collects and distributes donated food to more than 500 nonprofit partner agencies in six Central Florida counties: Brevard, Lake, Orange, Osceola, Seminole and Volusia.
  • Statewide Beneficiaries:

  • Florida Impact – Florida Impact’s mission is to inspire and enlist the people of Florida to secure justice for and with those whose economic rights have not been realized. We also work to increase access to food programs by conducting aggressive outreach strategies and public policy advocacy.
  • 2011 Restaurants and Beverages
    Food Providers:
  • BB King’s Blues Club Orlando
  • Bahama Breeze
  • Beard Papa’s
  • Buena Vista Palace Hotel & Spa
  • Cafe Tu Tu Tango
  • The Capital Grille
  • City Fire American Oven & Bar
  • Crave
  • Cress Restaurant
  • Cuisinier’s Catered Cuisine & Events
  • Cusano’s Bakery
  • Dine with Shamu by SeaWorld Orlando
  • Emeril’s Tchoup Chop
  • Empress Sissi
  • FreshPoint
  • JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes
  • K Restaurant & Wine Bar
  • Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts
  • LongHorn Steakhouse
  • Nestle Professional
  • Olive Garden
  • Omni Orlando Resort at ChampionsGate
  • Orlando World Center Marriott
  • The Ravenous Pig
  • Red Wing Restaurant
  • Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld
  • Rosen Shingle Creek Resort: A Land Remembered
  • Rosen Shingle Creek Resort: Cala Bella Italian Bistro
  • Royal Plaza
  • Sanaa at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
  • Technical Education Center, Osceola County
  • Three2OH Ice Cream
  • Uno Chicago Grill
  • The Vineyard Wine Company
  • Whole Foods Market
  • Windermere Country Club
  • Beverage Providers:

  • Barefoot Wine & Bubbly
  • Blue Martini
  • Brown-Forman
  • Effinheimer Beer Brands
  • Magners Irish Cider
  • Nespresso Coffee
  • Nestle Water | San Pellegrino & Acqua Panna
  • Opici Wine Co. of Florida
  • Orlando Brewing Company
  • Pepsi
  • Selected Brands
  • Straight Up Beverage Solutions
  • 0 1160
    Photobucket

    I recently visited West Palm Beach and headed out on a night on the town with my family. Just south of Cityplace in downtown West Palm Beach, Joy Noodles sits off of S. Dixie Highway in a older part of town where most buildings have shuttered up, having seen better days.

    Joy Noodles is a popular place though, serving up various noodle bowls and stir fried noodles based mostly from the family owner’s background from Thailand, but also dishes stemming from Japan, Vietnam, and China.

    For appetizers, we chose the crispy calamari $5.95 which were quite decent calamari though a bit on the fried side, it had that fresh squid taste still in tact and wasn’t too tough to chew.

    For entree, my mom ordered the mee goreng, a stir fried noodle dish stemming from Indonesia. I ordered the Chiangmai noodle soup (A northern Thai dish with a definite Burmese influence, with egg noodles in light curry coconut broth) and my sister ordered the Japanese udon noodle soup.

    Their bowls are huge and shaped like toilet bowls. I think my bowl alone would have fed an entire village in the mother land. I could hardly finish a third of the bowl before throwing in the white napkin to signal defeat. The noodles themselves were okay, nothing outstanding but also not particularly offensive.

    I thought this place has potential and could be better if they kicked up their spices some and added more flavor profile to their dishes rather than being one dimensional.

    Joy Noodles on Urbanspoon

    Photobucket

    Crispy Calamari 

    Photobucket

    Mee goreng noodles

    Photobucket

    Japanese Udon noodles 


    Photobucket

    Chiangmai noodles




    0 1076
    Photobucket

    Friday night. Palm Beach Gardens. Do you know where your children are?

    If you are from Palm Beach Gardens, they are probably hanging out with their middle school friends at the local Downtown development near the Palm Beach Gardens Mall. I recently went there to catch a movie at the Downtown Cobb Theatre and was surprised to see that the whole place was inundated with teens and preteens all walking around in packs, chatting away and otherwise enjoying themselves in a sort of huge weekend socialization / coming of age ritual where they meet up with friends at the movies, catch some froyo, and goof off around Downtown Palm Beach Gardens.

    Located next to the Downtown Cobb Theatre in downtown Palm Beach Gardens, MJ Fresh is housed in a former Johnny Rocket’s building. The furniture and even the old juke boxes were still in place. They did try to fix it up a little with some modern blue light fixtures but that is about it. It was quite a strange set up but I didn’t think too much of it.

    The place is owned by a small family with roots in California naming the restaurant MJ after the matriarch of the family. (Not as a nod to Michael Jordan/Michael Jackson as my sister and I had previously conjectured)

    Their menu is mostly American fare such as California Chicken wraps, sandwiches, burgers, and pastas. They even have a small selection of chicken curries that you can try (owing from their Pakistani roots)

    My sister had the fettucine alfredo pasta with chicken which was decent enough. I ordered the The Phoos burger topped with Gorgonzola, Lettuce, Tomato, Pickles, Onion (7.99), which was delicious: succulent and juicy, filling and topped with a fresh ciabatta bun. I will definitely have to come back to try the chicken curry.

    For more information visit:

    http://www.mjsfresh.com/

    MJ's Fresh on Urbanspoon

    Photobucket
    The Phoos Burger with Gorgonzola, Lettuce, Tomato, pickles and onions and fries



    Photobucket

    Chicken fettucine alfredo

    0 927

    Brand spanking new t-shirt designs for theDailyCity’s Food Truck Bazaar this Sunday July 24th 2011 at Avalon Park ! Pre-order yours today by emailing shop@impressink.com with your shirt choice and shirt size! If we run out, you can pick it up at their shop on Goldenrod next week or have it sent via shopping at http://tastychomps.storenvy.com !

    There are limited quantities available so make sure you get there early!

    Its from 6pm-10pm at Avalon Park. The big park with the bandshell. Just drive into Avalon Park and keep going till you see the park (and the chaos) on the right hand side.

    http://www.thedailycity.com/2011/05/thedailycitycom-food-truck-bazaar.html

    2 893
    Applebee’s recently came out with a few stacked stuffed and topped dishes to their menu. They sent me a gift card to try out their items. I will go check it out later this week and report back! Below is some more information on the new dishes! check it out



    Applebee’s(r) Three New Stacked Stuffed & Topped Dishes Treat Guests to New Twists on Steaks, Pastas and Salads Starting at $9.99

    LENEXA, Kan. – (July 11, 2011) -Applebee’s new Stacked Stuffed & Topped entrees take the neighborhood’s tried and true favorites – sirloin, chicken, pasta and salad – and pair them with unexpected twists like mozzarella scoops, fresh roasted vegetables and bruschetta.

    The latest dishes include Florentine Topped House Sirloin with fresh roasted red peppers and sliced mushrooms, Chicken Parmesan Stack featuring country fried chicken atop a bed of fettuccine with roasted garlic Alfredo and Provolone-Stuffed Meatballs with Fettuccine.

    “Steaks and pastas are our best-selling items so we know guests love them,” said Chef Shannon Johnson, executive director – culinary innovation & development at Applebee’s. “We are taking these tried and true favorites and literally stacking, stuffing and topping them with new flavors.”

    Today’s guests want to try new foods but are skeptical at spending their hard-earned money on something they might not like. In fact, 66 percent of consumers report they enjoy trying new flavors from time to time while 20 percent said they prefer to stick to tried and true options according to Technomic’s Flavor Consumer Trend Report.

    The Applebee’s culinary team experimented with dozens of concepts before choosing the following Stacked Stuffed & Topped dishes, all of which scored well among focus groups:

    *       Florentine Topped House Sirloin – Applebee’s classic 7 oz. signature sirloin grilled to order with roasted red peppers, sliced mushrooms, onion, fresh spinach and bruschetta, topped with garlic and herbs and served over fried red potatoes; a 9 oz. signature sirloin is available as well.
    *       Chicken Parmesan Stack – Country-fried chicken stuffed with Italian cheeses, smothered in Applebee’s spicy marinara and served atop a bed of fettuccine with roasted garlic Alfredo, onions and peppers, topped with parsley and shredded Parmesan cheese and served with toasted garlic bread.
    *       Bruschetta Topped Chicken Salad – Grilled chicken breast and warm fried mozzarella scoops served on a bed of crisp romaine tossed with champagne vinaigrette and topped with juicy tomatoes, red onions, kalamata olives, roasted red peppers, basil and garlic, sprinkled with Asiago cheese and finished with a balsalmic glaze.

    And this isn’t the first time Applebee’s has stuffed a popular item with greater flavor. The new items join Applebee’s Provolone-Stuffed Meatballs with Fettuccine on the menu.

    Applebee’s is also having some fun with those Stuffed Meatballs, this time in an appetizer. Applebee’s Stuffed Meatballs & Mozzarella Scoops features two meatballs paired up with crispy scoops of golden fried mozzarella, topped with zesty marinara, parsley and Parmesan cheese.

    “We’re putting excitement back into the casual dining experience and being almost irreverent in our approach,” said Johnson. “People thought we were nuts when we took a perfectly good meatball and stuffed it with Provolone but our guests have eaten 30 million of those meatballs in less than a year, so we’re definitely onto something.”






    Provolone-Stuffed Meatballs with Fettuccine 
     
     Bruschetta Topped Chicken Salad

     Chicken Parmesan Stack
    Bruschetta Topped Chicken Salad

    3 1082

    Exclusive Interview: Kalbi Hau5 Food Truck Owners Herbert Tinjaca and Henry Lai



    The food truck scene in Orlando is on full blast! A new Asian BBQ food truck has arrived on the scene by the name of Kalbi Hau5. Kalbi is the Korean bbq short rib popular in Korean cuisine. It’s personally one of my favorite dishes and I am looking forward to trying this place out once it’s ready. I had the opportunity to interview the Food Truck owners Herbert Tinjaca and Henry Lai, both Orlando natives, about their recent venture kalbi hau5 (hau5 is pronounced as house, so kalbi house) Asian BBQ food truck

    Tasty Chomps: Why did you decide to start a food truck?
    Herbert Tinjaca: We are very proud of our product and are excited to be able to provide Orlando with a new twist on Asian food. I lived in Manhattan for grad school, and in LA for almost half a year, and got to experience the latest and trendiest in food. We combined all those flavors and experiences into one, and created kalbi hau5.

    TC: What will be on the menu at Kalbi Hau5?
    KH: We offer short rib (kalbi), chicken, pork, shrimp, and tofu. You can get them in a taco, burrito, or rice bowl. We offer specialized quesadillas such as the kimchi, citrus-jalapeno pork, and sesame-chili chicken quesadillas, and truffle fries. We carry water and lychee lemonade to drink, and frozen hot chocolate for dessert.

    Every week we plan on having a different weekly special, a new menu item for that week only. So make sure to stay updated and not miss out.

    When will you begin serving as a fully operational food truck?
    We hope to be serving no later than the beginning of August

    Where can people find you?
    They can find us on facebook: facebook.com/kalbihau5
    on twitter: twitter.com/kalbihau5
    website: http://www.kalbihau5.com
    email: kalbihau5@gmail.com
    or call/text: 407-403-0115

    Exact locations will be posted a week in advance on the website in a couple of months, once we learn the ins and outs of the business/law regulations and develop relationships/contacts with land owners. We plan to be at different locations around Orlando for every lunch & dinner, just like the trucks in LA, and San Fran. In the meantime, daily locations will be on twitter, which is instantly posted/updated onto our website. For the first couple months, we will most likely be at a stationary location until these contacts are developed. Most likely we will be on Colonial Drive, very close to Fashion Square Mall. Currently in negotiation with a land owner.

    Below are some photos from Kalbi Hau5 with some concept designs from their facebook.com/kalbihau5:


    Kalbi BBQ Short Ribs







    Sesame chili chicken quesadilla





    Spicy Pork Tacos







    Sweet Mandarin Chicken Tacos





    Truffle Fries 


    for more photos visit http://www.facebook.com/kalbihau5

    1 898
    This is a press release I recieved regarding the Rosen Shingle Creek resort located on Universal Blvd by  International Drive right by the UCF Rosen School of Hospitality.

    ORLANDO (June 28, 2011) – Summertime is cause for celebration, and the award-winning Rosen Shingle Creek is helping patrons celebrate good times throughout the summer with its first-ever “Rosen Shingle Creek Summer Spirits Series.” The second in the three-part dining series, “Craft Beer and Gourmet Burgers” takes place Saturday, July 9 at 7:00 p.m. at the hotel’s classic steakhouse, A Land Remembered, and features five courses of burgers grilled to perfection and accompanied by a variety of craft beers.
    The series concludes on Saturday, Aug. 13 with “Andiamo Italia” at Cala Bella Italian bistro, featuring six courses of Italian cuisines and wines. Each Summer Spirits event is $55 plus tax and gratuity per person. Guest rooms are available at a discounted rate of $99 plus tax on the night of each dinner only for event guests, based on availability. Guests receive complimentary valet parking when dining at any Rosen Shingle Creek restaurant.  For more information, call (407) 996-FOOD (3663). 
    The “Craft Beer and Gourmet Burgers” night begins with a Black Angus Classic Burger topped with Vermont White Cheddar, Vidalia Onions, Slab Bacon and House Ketchup on a Classic Kaiser Roll. The second course offers a more exotic choice   ?  the Peppercorn Crusted Bison Burger, prepared with Smoky Rogue Blue Cheese, Truffle Fried Onions and Dijoinnaise on a Ciabatta Roll. Next is a sweet and spicy combination  ?  Barbeque Angus Short Rib Sliders topped with Fried Jalapenos, Sweet Summer Slaw and Queso Fresca served on a Mini Broiche. But that’s not all. The fourth burger course consists of an All Natural Herbed Turkey Burger generously layered with Avocado, Heirloom Tomato, Baby Arugula and Lavender Honey Mustard on a Five Grain Roll. The grill-fest concludes with a Flat Seared Portabella Burger topped with Goat Cheese, Sun Dried Tomato Hummus and Organic Romaine served on Tandoori Flatbread.
    Of course, what would gourmet burgers be without gourmet fries? Guests may choose from the following side item to complement their five course feast: Shoe String Fries, Sweet Potato Sticks, Seasoned Wedges or House Made Truffled Potato Chips. Each burger course will be accompanied by a different style of craft brew, including Rosen Hotels & Resorts‘ own home-brew, Alligator Drool.
    On Saturday, Aug. 13, the Summer Spirits Series concludes with “Andiamo Italia” meaning “Let’s go to Italy!” at Cala Bella Italian bistro. The six-course Italian meal will be paired with six premium Italian wines.
    ====================================

    Award-Winning Rosen Centre’s Everglades Restaurant Introduces “One Price. Endless Options.” Promotion to Celebrate New Summer Menu

    Now Through Aug. 31, Guests Enjoy a Three-Course Dinner Including a Choice of Any Entrée on the Menu and a Glass of Wine for  

      

    Just $35 Per Person

    ORLANDO (July 20, 2011) — Rosen Centre‘s Everglades restaurant is inviting patrons to dive into its award-winning fare this summer at just a fraction of the retail price.  A special “One Price. Endless Options.” three-course dinner features seasonal Summer items, as well as all of the traditional favorites, for just $35 per person, plus tax and gratuity, any evening through Aug. 31, 2011. Many of the restaurant’s entrees are priced at $35 or more alone, with the three-course dinner normally priced at as much as $60 per person.
    Guests may choose from any one of the restaurant’s tempting entrees including new Summer offerings, all made from fresh, seasonal ingredients, such as the Pan Seared Snapper with Roasted Tomato Nage, Beluga Lentils and Herb Risotto or Grilled Swordfish with Rosemary Aioli, Arugula in Lemon and Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Fingerling Potatoes.  Or they can opt for a traditional favorite such as the Grilled Angus Filet with Pinot Noir Demi, Baby Vegetables and Fingerling Potatoes; Tenderloin of Buffalo with Wild Mushrooms and Zinfandel Sauce; Free Range Chicken with Sweet Plantains stuffing and Coconut Key Lime Sauce.
    The dinner also features a choice of any soup or salad starter.  New Summer seasonal saladsinclude a refreshing Watermelon & Pistachio-Crusted Goat Cheese Salad drizzled with Chocolate Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing and the George Barley Salad with Rock Shrimp Tempura Croutons, Cashews and Grilled Pineapple with Sesame Ginger Dressing as tribute to a man that dedicated his life to the preservation of Florida’s Everglades.

    The meal is topped off with a choice of two Miniature Dessert Shots from a variety of selections that changes daily such as Strawberry Shortcake, Berry Bread Pudding, Guava Flan, German Chocolate, Key Lime Pie, Tropical Fruit Sushi Roll, Mocha Cappuccino and Chocolate Coconut.
    A glass of house wine from a choice of nine options including Indaba Chenin Blanc, Brancott Sauvignon Blanc, Castle Rock Pinot Noir and De Loach Zinfandel completes the dinner. This limited-time offer is not valid with other offers, discounts or specials. Guests receive complimentary valet parking when dining in the Everglades restaurant. For reservations, call 407 996-8560. For more information, visit www.evergladesrestaurant.com or www.rosencentre.com.


    part of the Orlando Magical Dining Month!

    1 1321

    In Vietnam, I spent several days trekking out to the rice field laden countryside to visit the ancestral homes (que huong) of my grandparents: the rural villages of Kinh Nuoc Man and Binh Dai. These villages have pretty much stayed the same for hundreds of years, located in the sleepy, balmy Mekong Delta of Vietnam where people grow coconuts, rice, durians, chom chom, fisheries, shrimp and more. In these villages, I could trace ancestors going back hundreds of years in these towns.

    Here are some photos of my trip:

    Photobucket
    Rice fields upon rice fields: its hard work out here in the sun
    Photobucket
    Ricefields on the road to the country.
    Photobucket

    Wood pillars from a restaurant in My Tho, Vietnam
    Photobucket

    Ancestral temple in Kinh Nuoc Man, with the founder of the temple tracing back to my family’s matriarch hundreds of years ago…
    Photobucket
    A View from Kinh at the river. 

    My mother escaped Vietnam on a rickety fishing boat at this very same spot 30 years ago. She was a boat refugee who spent weeks out at sea, months in a refugee camp in Malaysia and the Philipines, and finally sponsored to America. Many others who tried to escape were not as fortunate: strong storms capsizing boats, thai pirate attacks, capture from the communist police, countless millions lost at sea after the fall of Saigon in 1975.

    Photobucket
    Sugar cane fields at my granduncle’s in Binh Dai. 

    I never met my grandfather on my mom’s side, both grandparents passing away by the time my mom was 12. They say that my granduncle (my grandfather’s brother) resembles them so I have an idea of what he may have looked like.

    Photobucket
    Sugarcane fields in Binh Dai, Vietnam

    Photobucket
    A Simple meal in the village of Binh Dai at my granduncle’s: fresh farm raised chicken, fish, herbs, crabs and rice 

    Photobucket

    Rice fed chicken


    Photobucket


    Fish from the rivers

    Photobucket

    Congee rice porridge

    Photobucket

    Fresh river crabs

    Photobucket

    Shrimp farming in Vietnam is much more profitable than rice farming. A lot of the fields are being converted to shrimp farms. 

    Photobucket

    The Ice Cream man. Cause it’s hot as hell in the Vietnamese countryside in the summer time. 

    Photobucket

    Sweet, cool surrender. 

    0 1136

    No doubt in these past ten years, Vietnam has enjoyed unprecedented levels of prosperity as their government has moved towards a market economy, while maintaining communist party rule. Despite the rampant corruption (bureaucratic red tape or traffic violation citations solved by the slip of a few dollars), there seems to be a great level of stability in the country where people are able to make money and carry out their businesses peaceably. There are still reports of bag snatching and thievery in the streets (someone got mugged outside of my uncle’s house the other day) so travelers should be wary of flashing too much bling around.

    I believe if Vietnam keeps at its current pace, it could rise to the standard of living found in places like Hong Kong in the next 20 years or so. Indeed there are many places in Vietnam, particularly in Ho Chi Minh City which appear to have already arrived at this point. (see below)

    Despite these advances, there is still much to be done in terms of sanitation (polluted streets and waterways) and poverty levels. Right along side the richest streets in Ho Chi Minh City, beggars and children and elders selling lottery tickets still are prevalent. Indeed, many of the places in the rural countryside scattered with rice field farms still live the same way they did for hundreds of years.

    Photobucket
    Photobucket

    A beautiful Audi R8 I found on the streets of Downtown Ho Chi Minh City. Ten years ago it was rare to see a Toyota Camry on the street.

    1 1748
    Banh Bot Chien is actually a food with Chinese roots (Chiuchow or Trieu Chau). It literally means fried powder cake, a rice flour cake that is fried with eggs . It’s popular with school children and the stalls serving this fast food concoction are usually found near schools where children walk to and from.

    My uncle picked some up for me this morning near a local school. I wanted to try it out since it sounded great but I thought this batch was a bit bland and too greasy for breakfast. I got tired of it after eating about half the box.

    Photobucket

    Banh bot chien

    Chef's Spotlight

    0 87
    “What drives me as a chef is learning what’s new in the ever-changing culinary world, and having unique experiences with people I’ve met throughout...

    Featured Articles

    0 369
    Seasons 52 - as its name aptly suggests - is a restaurant concept that changes its menu along with the seasons. It's owned by...