Tomorrow is my mom's birthday! When my brothers and I were growing up, our birthdays gave us the right to make one kingly decree: We could request any special dinner for that night. One time, I got a little drunk with this birthday power and requested a sit-down dinner at Fazoli's, the fast food pasta chain. I had first eaten Fazoli's at school, when it was catered for a special hot lunch, and thought it was magical. Don't worry...over time, I got wiser. I realized that my mom was a seriously good cook and started requesting that she prepare my favorite dishes.
So this morning, in the spirit of nostalgia and birthdays and Saturdays, I prepared homemade cinnamon rolls for my mom. The recipe for these rolls caught my eye because--despite calling for healthier substitutes of the "normal" ingredients--the reviews said nothing about the end product tasting like chalk.
The rolls were actually quite simple to make and I was really pleased with how they turned out. Plus, my mom seemed to really like them! The recipe is from the Diva Dish, and I made it exactly as written [link to recipe].
As we noshed on the rolls + some fresh fruit, we discussed birthday plans, settling on: (a) a pilgrimage to spend all of those amazing coupons you get in the mail on the month of your birthday (b) lunch at our local bookstore café, a joint straight out of "You've Got Mail" that serves the most fantastic apple roast pork sandwiches you've ever eaten in your life, (c) picking up dinner from the new craft pizza joint and enjoying it while in our comfies, figuring out what Downton Abbey is all about and (c) Dessert...duh.
In typing this up, I'm realizing that 75% of these plans involve the pursuit of amazing food. Whatever, there's a birthday involved...Treat. Yo. Self.
Planning a day of birthday
binging deliciousness reminds me of the time my mom and I spent exploring our inner foodie at Pike's Place Market in Seattle. "Eat Something Delicious from Pikes Place Market" is an item from the original bucket list, which means that I've been eyeing this gastronomic mecca for a little over a decade. At this time last month, when my mom and I were frolicking in the greater Seattle area, I knew my time had come.
We spent our last afternoon in Seattle sampling our way through Pike's Place Market. We had gotten some great ideas of places to go from a Flourishing Foodie article, but allowed ourselves to wander as well. At each vendor that caught our eye, we would order a small item and split it, which was an excellent strategy that allowed us to treat ourselves without getting too full. Below are our favorites!
Raspberry Ginger Greek Yogurt from Ellenos Real Greek Yogurt. This was a decadent creamy treat, unlike any yogurt I've had before. The kick of the ginger was mellowed out by the sweetness of the raspberry. If my appetite had allowed, I would have stopped here twice.
Pumpkin Pie Tea from Market Spice. I am a coffee girl, through and through. I take it black, preferably through an IV. Having said that, I was so intrigued by the sheer amount of tea flavors available. Cherry Almond? Gingerbread? PUMPKIN PIE!?! Here, take my money.
Cinnamon Cardamom Braid from Piroshky Piroshky. This Russian bakery serves up some interesting meat pies, but since most of them were made with cheese, I had to steer toward something else in order to save my stomach. The cinnamon cardamom braid was an excellent alternative, and just the way I like my baked goods--not too sweet, with an interesting texture.
Fresh Crab and a Jumbo Shrimp. We walked up to one of the many seafood vendors, ordered a small hunk o' crab meat and two jumbo shrimps. It wasn't a pre-arranged dish with any special ingredients or anything, but for fresh seafood, all you need is a fork.
Peach Ginger Beer from Rachel's Ginger Beer. Ginger in anything tastes good, but ginger beer is out of this world. At the Rachel's Ginger Beer location in Pike's Place, you can order a number of interesting cocktails, anything from a Moscow Mule to some concoction called the "Suffering Bastard". Or you can order one of their uniquely-flavored ginger beers straight up, which is what I did.
A Huge Oyster Oh yeah, we also ordered a couple of these from a seafood vendor. I'll just let these pictures speak for themselves...
All of this talking about food has really gotten me hungry again. Time to start the birthday activities :) #Treatyoself2015