Flashback: Island Inn Monhegan – Lunch in the Dining Room…

Fish Tacos - Island Inn Monhegan

Posting a few *Flashback* photos of lunch at the Island Inn dining room from 2015. I can tell you that each and every meal at the inn was a treat. The fish tacos were outstanding! And the iced tea, ahhhh… the iced tea is fabulous!

Island Inn Monhegan Lobster Roll

And… the Maine lobster roll was so extremely fresh, I believe it just crawled off the boat! Not full of mayo like many Lobster Rolls. Just delicious!

I’m not sure of this year’s menu, but whatever they come up with you know it will be good! In past years we have had lunch at the Barnacle, by the wharf. That’s always fun, you meet some interesting people that way! They used to have sandwiches in a refrigerated case, wonderful sandwiches, turkey, etc., then they served condiments on the side, which is nice if you prefer plain, etc. The refrigerated sandwiches are perfect if you’re not a fan of grilled sandwiches. Always something to look forward to (like breakfast and dinner, hee hee)!

Back to normal posting 5/16!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

A Cappucino Treat – at Black Tap Coffee!

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I took this photo while Fred and I were sitting at the coffee bar, looking out of the screened window at Black Tap Coffee in Charleston. It was a beautiful day, so it was such a treat to have the windows open.

I think it’s so cool how the design that they make on your cappuccino stays until the very last sip. This is coffee at it’s finest!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

In A Hurry? Newman’s Own Pizza with Arugula – Delicious!

Paul Newman's Cheese Pizza with Arugula

What a delight! Newman’s Own Four Cheese (frozen) Pizza (Multigrain crust with flaxseed) is a fabulous option when you’re in a hurry. Just pull it out of the freezer, put it into the oven to bake (10 minutes), then pull it out, top it with baby arugula, a light drizzle of olive oil and a dusting of parmesan.

The arugula adds the nicest flavor!

Newman’s Own pizza does not taste like frozen. I never bought frozen pizza until a friend (thank you Heather!) suggested this one. WOW! Was she ever right! Our local Harris Teeter carried the (uncured) pepperoni, which is tasty, but we just wanted plain cheese, so they have started to carry (thank you Harris Teeter!).

For a thin crust, this one is perfect, not too thin, but not thick and doughy… A fabulous treat!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

How to Make Avocado Toast!

AVOCADO TOAST

One of my favorite things in the world… AVOCADO TOAST! (Pictured above with red pepper flakes – YUM!)

There are so many renditions of avocado toast, each as wonderful as the next, but a few of my favorites are the avocado toast from The Daily in Charleston, SC –  Last summer it had a slice of an AH-mazing heirloom tomato on top of the avocado- WOW! Lately it’s been avocado on grilled crusty bread with za’atar spices (OH MY GOSH!) and a drizzle of olive oil.

I had some good crusty bread from the bakery and thought I would give it a whirl. I didn’t have the Za’atar spices (will buy for next time, they sell them at The Daily), so I toasted the bread (I didn’t grill), then spread avocado, a drizzle of olive oil and S&P. I took a bite, hmmm, good but missing something, so I sliced a small lemon wedge, gave a little drizzle. BINGO! That was all it needed to brighten the flavor and take it from good to GREAT in a second or two!

Avocado Toast

Soooo good with or without the red pepper flakes! What’s your favorite rendition? Do you like the avocados smushed (YES!) or simply sliced (I think they slide off the toast like this, but it’s pretty!)

Catch you back here tomorrow!

A healthier version of a cheese toast – so wonderful!

Grilled Cheese & Arugula with Balsamic

I could eat this Every. Single. Day. I always keep baby arugula in the fridge, I love it in omelets, on sandwiches, pizza and all by itself!

This looks very decadent, but these pieces of bread are small (wonderful bread from a local bakery. Very rustic, bread with substance).

Cheese Toast

I lightly toast the bread first, then add some grated sharp cheddar, put it on a baking pan and put it under the broiler for just a minute or two (HAVE TO WATCH IT – Don’t walk away!) Once the cheese starts to bubble, pull it out, cut it in half and put a heaping bunch of arugula dressed in olive oil & balsamic (you can even add to the dressing a tiny bit of honey, but not much). Then eat the rest of the arugula on the side.

This is a FABULOUS LUNCH!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Quick and Easy Wild Rice with Cranberries & Walnuts

Wild Rice

We were having grilled chicken for dinner, but what to go along with it? Hmmmm. I had a bag of Wild Rice from Whole Foods, so I thought, hmmm… what could I do with it to make it a little more interesting? Click HERE to print recipe minus all the extra words and photos.

Wild Rice side dish

Quick and Easy Wild Rice with Cranberries & Walnuts

Ingredients

-Wild Rice Mix – I bought one without a seasoning packet, just the rice mix. Cook according to package directions. For this recipe I used 1 cup of rice, which yields 3 cups of cooked rice.

-Green Onion – minced

-Dried Cranberries – To your Taste, I put a handful and gave them a quick chop first, but it’s not necessary.

-Walnuts (I toasted) – I put a handful in a skillet and toasted (just until you smell them)

Dressing: Small splash of OJ, orange zest (optional), then drizzle in enough Olive Oil to coat the rice.  Season with S & P.

Directions

Once the rice has finished cooking, place in bowl, add green onion, cranberries and walnuts. Drizzle with dressing and fold to mix get the grains of rice coated.

You could also add a small bit of feta too. I didn’t, but hey, anything that is in your fridge that sounds good… ADD IT!

I purposely do not give amounts, just use more of what you like and less of what you don’t. For reference, I cooked 1 cup of rice and used 2 small green onion, a handful of dried cranberries, and a handful of toasted walnuts. For the dressing I use just enough oil to coat the rice (but not have it sitting in a puddle)

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Chocolate Biscotti Recipe! A KEEPER!

Chocolate Biscotti!

Chocolate Biscotti… this is such a wonderful recipe. Truly your eyes will roll back into your head with delight! This is a great recipe to make and leave a few out and freeze the rest. Then when you need that chocolate treat pull out a few. You will be so glad you did! Wonderful depth of chocolate flavor from the cocoa powder, white chocolate baking bar, and semi sweet chocolate.

One BIG change. In the recipe below where it says Butter or MARGARINE… BUTTER! BUTTER! BUTTER! NO MARGARINE!

This recipe came from Better Homes and Gardens Magazine years ago. Click HERE to print the recipe from their website – it’s one to file away to keep forever and ever! (Note: I do not add the optional glaze (omitted from the recipe as shown below) – it doesn’t need it, and freezes better without it!

Chocolate Biscotti!

Directions look long, but really it’s not that time consuming. Biscotti dough is thick, so if you have a heavy duty mixer, that will help immensely… When I first started making this recipe I didn’t have a Kitchen Aid mixer. So you have to use some major elbow grease to get things mixed up. The Kitchen Aid does it with no effort at all… love that mixer!

After baking, and flipping - PERFECTION!

Can you imagine a more fitting treat for your day? Can you believe this recipe has been reviewed 21,000 times? Amazing. A definite favorite!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Roasted Cauliflower – Quick, Easy & SO WONDERFUL!

Roasted Cauliflower | Art Food Home

Roasted Cauliflower. I love it! It gets nice and sweet and the flavor profile changes completely when you roast it. It’s so quick and easy to do.

Did you realize there are different colors of cauliflower? Green, purple and plain white. I chose a purple cauliflower this time (they all taste the same) – it was fun! I break into fairly small florets, they take less time to roast. If you have the time you can leave them in larger pieces. We were having this with grilled chicken, so I didn’t have a lot of time, therefore the small pieces.

Break the cauliflower into florets and drizzle with a little olive oil in a large bowl. Swirl the cauliflower around with your hands to coat it thoroughly. Then lightly grease (I always use olive oil or organic canola oil) a cookie sheet (this one I use for roasting). Turn the oven on 400 degrees F. Once the oven has preheated, place the cauliflower on the cookie sheet and space the florets out a bit, a little sprinkle of S&P. This will roast for 25-45 minutes (depending upon thickness). Flip about halfway through, you will see that the cauliflower is browning, this is GOOD, this is TASTY STUFF! Once it passes the fork test (fork easily goes through a thicker piece of cauliflower), it’s ready to eat! You can eat just like it is, or a quick little sprinkle of parmesan.

Speaking of parmesan… not the brands that apparently have wood filler in them, sigh…

Purple Cauliflower | Art Food Home

Portrait of my cauliflower – Hee.

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Recipe: Ham & Cheese Noodle Casserole – The ultimate in comfort food!

Ham & Cheese Casserole

A friend sent me this recipe. Oh. My. Word! I changed up only a few things, I used less butter, substituted low-fat sour cream, used a little more cheese, and a wonderful noodle I found, I also thinned with milk because Fred likes a thinner sauce – I included the original recipe, and then my version below. This casserole is comfort food at its very finest. There are no cream soups with unknown ingredients, good ingredients = a healthier meal for sure!

You can make this as healthy as you like. Less cheese, no problem, I think I’m going to try using Greek yogurt in place of sour cream. One day. So afraid to mess it up. But I have substituted Greek yogurt in recipes in the past with good results. I will update this post if I do!

Click to print (both) the recipes (minus all my words)!

The original recipe (from a friend, thank you Heather Locke!!):

HAM & CHEESE NOODLE CASSEROLE

4 Tablespoons butter

1 small onion, chopped fine

2 eggs, slightly beaten

1 cup sour cream

1/2 cup grated Gruyere or Swiss cheese

1 ½ cups finely chopped cooked ham

Salt

½ pound noodles, ¼ inch wide, cooked.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 2 quart casserole dish. Melt the butter in a skillet and cook onion over medium heat until soft.

In a small bowl: Mix the eggs and sour cream together, then add onion, cheese and ham. Add salt to taste. Put the noodles in the casserole dish, then add the sauce and toss gently. Bake for 45 minutes or until a straw inserted in the middle comes out clean.

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My variation (was more clear to re-write, even though there are only a few changes)

1-2 Tablespoons butter

1 small onion, chopped

2 eggs, slightly beaten

1 cup low fat sour cream

~1 cup sharp cheddar cheese

1 ½ cups cooked finely chopped ham

8 oz (½#) egg noodles (I used Amish Country), cooked and drained

Milk to your taste – I thinned it a bit using probably ⅓ – ½ cup 2% milk.

Follow above directions, I also topped mine with a little cheese. I baked it covered for 30 minutes and uncovered for 15.

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Valentine’s Day…

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Happy Valentine’s Day to each and every one of you!

What do you normally do on Valentine’s Day? Go to a nice restaurant? Stay in and make a nice dinner? Read a good book? Do nothing special?

There are a lot of nice restaurants to visit in Charleston, that’s for sure! This weekend is also SEWE (Southeastern Wildlife Expo) – so the city will be crazy busy.

I think we’ll find something nice to make ourselves… or maybe something from Goat Sheep Cow? Enjoy your day!

Catch you back here tomorrow!