Grocery Outlet

Bargain Market ūüôā also referred to by my family as Grocery-O

I am so in love with this place & they also have the cutest commercial songs and puppets. I live close-by to one, and go here often. Every time I go, there’s always new interesting things, however, you may come today and the items will be gone & never return tomorrow. So in essence, if you want it, buy it then and there.

Today I went because my lover lover boy (husband really) made delicious shrimp and vegetable stir fry, with rice duh, and it is beyond delicious. So we had that for lunch and was expected to have it for dinner too, but I really wanted to have some appetizers! I was crazy craving them, and just had to find me some. I looked up some places for a happy hour, and a lot of places did have half price appzs., but I wasn’t in the mood for onion rings, mozzarella sticks, etc. Plus a margarita would be way too tempting even though I have work in the A.M.

Thinking….thinking….Hello! Grocery-O Silly! I never go there just for appetizers, I go for boring day in day out stuff. Lunches, dinners, granola bars, soaps, paper needs, etc. Today, I am headed for an adventure and am coming back with some goods.

I left out the door, by myself, because my husband decided to watch our son (thanks!), and took a stroll to the market. (No I don’t call every¬†store the market, I’m saying that because it is called Grocery Outlet Bargain Market) Out the door, twenty dollars in my pocket, and up and down every aisle to spend 19.00 even. I was not expected to get what I got!

Here’s a list followed by some pictures:

Wheat Bread $.99 (Not as an appz, but because we were out)

Gallon of Apple Juice $1.50

Tortilla Chips $1.99

Black Olives $.69

4 Layer Dip $1.50

Plain Greek Yogurt $1.50

4 Jalapeno & Cheese Tamales $1.50

Potato & Onion Perrogi’s¬†$1.99

Vegetable Samosas $2.99

20 Nut Bars $2.00 (10 for a dollar, score!)

12oz Salmon Fillet $2.99!

I mean look at this cuisine!! Italian, American, Mexican, Indian, the diversity is amazing!


So, after my husband came home from the Pacers vs Heat game, Pacers won, we dined on some delicious appetizers. This is how it went.

I made the perrogi’s in the oven first, taking about 30 min at 350 degrees, then the samosas at 400 for about ten minutes.

Our chips and dip were really good, very fresh!  Shared a jalapeno & cheese tamale, and finally a tamale without so much masa! The masa was delicately wrapped around a boat load of cheese and peppers. These are the ones! The jalapenos were diced which infused all the cheese and masa, and the cheese was just overflowing! Very good and rich, and authentic.

The veggie samosas were on point! In my last post I wrote about dining at an¬†Indian Restaurant and how everything was delicious, well the samosas tasted just¬†as good! We’ve never tried them and they were tasty!¬†I mean crispy and crunchy from the oven, without all the grease of a pan-fry job, warm, seasoned to perfection, cute little triangular shape¬†too.

Then were the perrogi’s, and it was like mashed potatoes stuffed inside dough and then crisped on the outside. It doesn’t sound that good now that I’m reading it, but we put some plain yogurt which is the exact same flavor as sour cream, just a tad healthier and more frugal, and it tasted just like a little mashed potato bite. Very interesting.

Dined and drank apple juice with it ūüôā

Later that night, we tried one of the nut bars and I am so glad I bought twenty of those scrumptious things! I unwrapped it and its only about 3 inches long and half an inch thick with the biggest nuts! Sweet and salty and mmm I love nuts! ¬† ¬†Wow… don’t be dirty! ¬†ūüėČ

That was my night and I hope there is a Grocery Outlet near you, check it out if you’ve never been, there’s always a good deal and interesting food! Tell me some of the things you’ve bought there!

Subway

Mmm. Subway sammiches.

Overall Rating

5/5

I go to the one on Oddie Blvd., its 24 friggin hours people! Yes I discovered it when I was pregnant but that’s besides the fact! I always get the Veggie Delite ($5 footlong) like this: 9 Grain Honey Oat Bread. Lite Mayo. Honey Mustard. Provolone Cheese. Extra Provolone Cheese. Red Onions. Banana Peppers. Cucumber. Sometimes Bell Peppers. All the shakers. And my favorite, extra-extra-extra-extra-extra lettuce! ¬†Im talking cant-close-the-sandwich is-this-girl-serious amount of lettuce. Today when I went, I asked for the extra extra lettuce and the girl behind the counter sarcastically grabs like half the bin of lettuce and says, “Is this good?” and chuckled and I replied Yes that’s exactly how much I want! She asked are you serious? I said yes!!

When you bite into it, its literally a salad sandwich. When I eat it, its just cuddle-with-yo-baby-daddy-all-night-long good. Try my sandwich and let love prevail!

Food- 5/5

Wait Time 5/5

Price- 5/5

Bathroom- 4/5

Cleanliness- 5/5

Enviornment- 5/5

Egg Roll King

Egg Roll King is a Chinese fast food restaurant in Sparks, and my overall rating is…. 3/5

Food – 2/5

Wait Time – 5/5

Price – 5/5

Service – 1/5

Bathroom – N/A due to no restroom

Cleanliness – 4/5

Environment – 5/5

The Food: Its okay. Portions are plentiful¬†and cheap. I ordered shrimp fried rice and shrimp egg rolls and ¬†the rice was good, but there was barely any shrimp in it! ¬†I’m talking a whole to-go box filled to the top with below average fried rice, and a couple of shrimps on top. The shrimp that was in the rice were so bland! No seasonings at all. It was just eh. The egg rolls had long stringy cabbage that was difficult to bite through, leaving my husband and i with stringy cabbage hanging down our egg rolls. The egg rolls were very crispy, I do have to say, but theyre supposed to be shrimp egg rolls and I couldnt even taste it. Probably because it was so little of shrimp used, and bland.

The Wait Time: Phenomenal, if the food was good! It took 5 minutes or less to get egg rolls and rice, and that impressed me. Too bad the food wasn’t great.

The Price: Shrimp fried rice 6.50. Shrimp egg rolls (3) – 2.99. Not bad prices and they have a house special for 3.95 that comes with 1 egg roll, pork fried rice, and chicken chow mien! That’s a deal, but the quality of food definitely needs a rise.

The Service: Not greeted. No smiles. No eye contact. Boo!

Cleanliness: It was clean; tables, floor, counter. Its just that the floor needs new tile, its very scuffed.

Environment: It seems a bit contradicting, but the customers were happy and its always has a nice customer in/out flow so I had to rate it high. It looks to be a family business and I can see the way they interact with each other and its loving and laughing, but toward customers they’re shy!

I come here probably every 6 months, if that, when I just want Chinese food NOW and they have that for a not-so-bad price. Its filling and portions are great, but I cant say this enough, it needs more flavor!

No Bake Energy Balls

This recipe is adapted from ‘Gimme Some Oven’ and I tweaked it a little for my preference. I like love these! Guilt free too. Pretty easy to make. It was made in a Tupperware bowl and transferred to a paper plate. One dish recipe, I’m all in!

Now these are kind of earthy, granola bar-ish so take that to mind when making these. My 2 year old liked them, but the adults love em.

1 Cup Rolled Oats

1/2 Cup Wheat Germ

3/4 Cup Peanut Butter

1/2 Cup Maple Syrup

1 Cap Vanilla Extract

1/2 Cup Shredded Coconut

1/3 Cup Sunflower Seeds

1/2 Cup Raisins

1/3 Cup Chopped Peanuts

1 Cup Honey Bunches of Oats Cereal (this gave it a nice crunch)

Mix all ingredients until thoroughly blended. Wet hands as needed and roll into balls. This made me 30 small energy balls. Refrigerate about 30 minutes & keep them cold. (Keeping them in the fridge is my preference, but I’m sure you can keep them at room temp.) The recipe I adapted this from said to add chocolate chips, but I wasn’t in the mood for chocolate and it came out great!

Its A New Day

“I didn’t dance because I was good at it; I did it because I wanted to. Because nobody else can dance for me, no matter how “good” she is. If I feel a yearning to dance, then I’m going to dance. It’s not about whether I’m good or secure or I belong. Here’s my hunch: nobody’s secure, and nobody feels like she completely belongs….But some people dance anyway, and those people have more fun. On my deathbed, I’m not going to wish I had danced like JLo; I’m just going to wish I had danced more. If anywhere in your soul, you feel the desire to write(or paint, or sing, or exercise) please…As a gift to yourself and others. Everyone has a story to tell. Writing is not about creating tidy paragraphs that sound lovely or choosing the “right” words. Its just about noticing who you are and noticing life and sharing what you notice. When you write your truth, it is a love offering to the world because it helps us feel braver and less alone. And if you’re a really, really bad writer, then it might be most important for you to write because your writing might free other really, really bad writers to have a go at it anyway….If you feel something call you to dance or write or paint or sing, please refuse to worry about whether you’re good enough. Just do it. Be generous. Offer a gift to the world that no one else can offer: yourself.”

Celebrity Countdown

Alright friends! Ive come up with a celebrity countdown and want to know your answers. I left my answers in the comment section so go ahead and post yours too!

And the countdown begins!

10 celebs you find good looking

9 celebs that are funny

8 celebs youd have dinner with (4 that have passed, 4 alive)

7 celebs that are graceful

6 celebs that should date (3 couples)

5 celebs youd party hard with

4 celebs youd dress like

3 celebs that would be good hang out buddies

2 celebs you wish didnt break up (1 couple)

1 celeb crush

Desserts I Love

1) Tiramisu

Coffee. Chocolate. Cookie. Oh my guh.

2) German Chocolate Cake

Chocolate chocolate chocolate chocolate chocolate chocolate ….coconut.

3) Baklavah

I love nutty flavors and i love the chewiness. My mom introduced me to it and i fell in love before i could even pronounce it!

4) Caramel Delights

Girl scout cookie favorite!

5) Cream Puffs

Mmm. My grandma made it best & i learned from her!

6) Store bought cherry pie

Why? My grandpa would bring it home almost weekly and he didnt like us eating sweets so it was really a treat! Theres nothing like the store-bought, jellied consistency. I make fabulous pies, but its too fresh. Store bought cherry pie just hits home.

India Kabab

India Kabab is a Middle Eastern, indian restaurant that, in my opinion, rocks! The food is so good and the price for a lunch buffet is only $7.95.

Few tips: Call ahead and see whats on the menu. I cant say this enough.

I went there for the first time and I was so not a fan of what they had. I piled my plate high, Im pretty flexible when I eat, tried one bite of everything and some stuff , I couldnt even swallow. Then I vowed I would never return and that indian food was just not for me.

Five years later, yes, its been around for decades!, I went with my dance troupe, and was surprised. When we got there, I kinda poked around at the buffet until my friend told me what to get. I got the measliest portions because Im not into wasting food. I sat down, tried everything and… it was like I was a starving child. I gobbled that food up went up for seconds and thirds!

My favorite was the Pakora or Bhajya, its a deep fried vegetable fritter and the Naan, which is a type of flatbread. There was also this dish with cauliflower and potatoes, called Aloo Gohbi, served with rice, it is amazing. The only con I can think of is that there is like nobody in there, ever. I think people go there for takeout, but whenever Ive gone its either my party only or one other party. But never has it been packed. The staff is very welcoming and all smiles, which I love. And, its damn good food.

Banana Split Cake

Banana Splits.

One of the things that come to my mind when I think about kid-friendly desserts. I mean, bananas, chocolate, strawberries, whipped cream, nuts, cherries…. Heaven.

So, why not put together a cake?!

The baking process was….well….at first a disaster! And I know that is definitely not how I should start out my baking blog, but it was! I mean the strawberry cake was just a flop! I tried this new recipe (big mistake) and it was horrible. Note to self. When a cake calls for jello mix, never, ever, and I mean never am I going to try it, and navigate elsewhere…quickly!

It sounded good, I was trying something new, never put jello mix in a cake. And I will never try to again! Ugh, sloppy mess. But, I redeemed myself and made a homemade strawberry cake that was moist and strawberry-ee, and delish. Will be a keeper. And then I made a chocolate cake with chocolate chips, but I think next time I will skip the chocolate chips. I like chocolate, but I’m not the chocoholic kinda lad. So made my two cakes. Then went on to making my banana filling. Yumm. And my whipped cream frosting because plain whipped cream doesn’t hold up nor can you spread it and keep it looking pretty.

Hundred percent homemade. As is with all my baking. And just to inform, if I ever make something that is semi-homemade like rice crispy treats or canned frosting I spruced up, I will tell on myself so quick! I am ashamed when I do stuff like that, but, I’m not going to lie when I do. Why bother?

So. I layered like this. From Bottom to Top:

Chocolate cake–banana filling–strawberry cake–whipped cream frosting–covered the sides in nuts–topped with sliced strawberries and bananas–and maraschino cherries.

It was a tall round cake. Heavy to carry. Very warming to the soul when eaten. And a happy throwback from childhood. This my friends is what baking is about.

Banana Split Cake