Vacationing with the hubby is always a great time, wherever we venture! This excursion was no different. We highly recommend The Diplomat Beach Resort in Hollywood, Florida. Our stay was simply magnificent from the moment we arrived to the bitter-sweet day we left for the airport headed home. Superb customer service upon encounter with our beautiful front desk clerk Neka, and the continual concierge love we received with every request, made each day pure heaven. But what made this stay that much more amazing for me was the fact that this was a Chef Geoffrey Zakarian culinary curated hotel! What an honor to be staying at a hotel where the Iron Chef himself has personally touched each dish we'd be devouring from the Diplomat!
Click heOur first tasty engagement occurred at the Point Royal Restaurant located right past the bar leading out to the pool and beach area. I had the Crab Croquettes accompanied with Chef GZ's infamous "Comeback Sauce" and a side of Buttered Broccolini. The hubby had the St. Tropez Turkey Club and a side of seasoned fresh cut fries.
The Verdict: I felt the crab croquettes lacked flavor. I was somewhat disappointed that I didn't taste the sea-sweetness of fresh crab in these little bites. While I was thankful they were not loaded down with stuffing/breading like some, basic bland crabmeat rolled in panko and deep fried, unfortunately allowed much to be desired. Not to mention I was saddened by the very sauce I've seen Chef make on TV. The 'Comeback Sauce' reminded me of the combination of a well known salad dressing sandwich spread and ketchup mix. Thankfully my palate was saved with the broccolini which was prepared to perfection! And the hubby's club sandwich was fresh, delicious, and exactly how I would make it!! Trust, adding sliced boiled egg and avocado to a traditional club sandwich makes everything right with the world!re to edit.
Point Royal's exquisite breakfast buffet is a thing of glory! Unique handcrafted salads, exotic seasonal tropical fruit, fresh gourmet cheeses, waffles, roasted potatoes, wide range of breakfast meats and cured meats, hot and cold cereals, fresh juices, coffee and tea. But what set this buffet off was the Omelette Bar extravaganza! I would have to love this right?! Come on, you all know 'make it your own' is my mantra- this was no different. I had a delicious veggie loaded egg white filled with scrumptious smoked salmon and herb goat cheese. Hubby's was filled with divine chicken sausage!
The Verdict: AWESOME!! I do believe my favorite part of the bar though was the amazing variety of sweet and luscious tropical fruit- truly earth's candy if I ever tasted. Our amazing server Bridgette gave us an awesome tip: Come down to dine 30 minutes prior to the end of the buffet. That way we'd pretty much be satisfied for most of the day! Boy was she ever right! And as an added bonus, Bridgette became such an insight to me as our 'culinary health' discussions regarding blood conditioning provided validation for a facet of AC Art Of Food. She was and is a true gem!
Oddly enough, we ventured off property to the popular mall in Hollywood, Aventure Mall, where we decided to dine at one of our favs, Cheesecake Factory. I had never seen the Almond Crusted Salmon Kale Salad on the menu in my previous visits here in Atlanta, but dining on the patio in balmy Hollywood, Florida convinced me that this was the 'coolest' dish to order. A lemon zest cream sauce topped this delicious piece of fish literally making my toes wiggle! Frankly, I've never been disappointed with a Cheesecake Factory meal ever, so I was not surprised! And this beautiful salad was mixed with delicate quinoa and tender sliced radish. Chunks of avocado and sweet-tart dried cranberries gave this nutty salad the sublime boost it needed. And of course, I will be re-making this some time in the near summer future- stay tuned.
The Verdict: A toe-wiggling winner!
And the highlight of our departure, a delicious bite at Point Royal before the car takes us to the airport. Are you sensing my love for salmon on this trip yet? Is it obvious? Lol!! This was the quintessential breakfast to seal the simply amazing time we spent on our vacation. Lox and Bagels is one of my favorite combinations ever! This Scandinavian/ Chinese/ Italian/ Americanized dish is so fresh, briney, creamy, and crisp and ever so refreshing as I squeeze lemon over everything! Sealing the deal with a steamy cup of coffee made this to be the perfect morning dining experience! Fresh baked bagels, cream cheese, lox, capers, boiled egg, sliced red onion, thinly sliced English cucumber, juicy Roma tomatoes, and don't forget the lemon! What more could a girl ask for!
The Verdict: The perfect ending bite to a perfect vacation!
In conclusion, when visiting Hollywood, Florida, I would encourage you to feast and reside at the Diplomat Beach Resort Hotel for a stellar experience all around! We're already planning our return- hope to see you there!
If you know anything about me, you know I really don’t care for shopping of the ‘clothing’ sort. However, when speaking of delicious vittles' ingredients, I’m all in! My whole premise behind promoting a culinary health environment is to ‘jazz-up’ healthier food items. I mean let’s face it, preparing the same old vegetables over and over, the same way is indeed both mundane and redundant, and frankly boring as hell.
All the more reason to Jazz Up The Ordinary!
I try my very best to develop and enhance recipes that are the tastiest versions of plants. While I have a few tricks up my sleeve that produce delicious outcomes, one of my favorite methods is using infused oils and vinegars- full flavor less guilt. You can always make your own collection of these tasty culinary accessories and bottle them, as I tend to do from time to time. But what I love to do (and most convenient) is pick up the delicious bottles of gourmet oils and vinegars from the foodie aisles of my neighborhood TJMaxx, HomeGoods, and Marshall’s.
From exotic herb steeped vinegars to rare truffle and fruit infused oils, you can’t beat these culinary-dream-finds that for the most part are under $10! And some for as low as $4.99! Plus the flavor enhancement it adds is unbeatable. Both my roasted green beans and grilled rainbow trout were popping with amazing flavor. The added benefit also is that these oils are healthy ones full of the 'good fat' our bodies and brains need to thrive. The general base of the oils I find are olive(virgin and extra virgin), grape seed, and avocado. Did I mention these make wonderful gifts for the foodie in your life? #WINNING
So the next time you’re out shopping for throw pillows for your couch, or that perfect dress for your vacation, don’t forget to visit the specialty foodie aisles and grab a few bottles of these treasures, your tastebuds will thank you!
Be sure to comment below and share your fav finds from these stores that you’ve discovered, I’d love to hear about them!
Uggh, I don't have that! This is a statement I hear more often than not from individuals trying out my recipes. Don't get me wrong, all ingredients are listed in my recipes, but lots of times these same individuals feel as if the recipe can be completed omitting an ingredient here or there. I must admit, I too early on felt as if I could short-cut my way through a recipe and get optimum results, boy was I WRONG! The taste may be really good, however, not the tasty end result the creating chef intended. Now why would you cheat yourself like that? Of course not!
For this reason, over the years I began to build somewhat of a repertoire of staples that I feel are essential in solidifying any good recipe. To be specific, my pantry staples are what I take most pride in since they have longer shelf lives and are more versatile and interchangeable. What's more, you can build it up your reserve over time so that you'll never be without when you're in the middle of a recipe, lol!
It's so funny, I have a best friend that is consistently in awe of the things I have on hand to cook with at any given point of time. Her comment is always, "...girl, ain't nobody got that in their pantry but you!"
Well the joke is on her, because I have included my personal pantry stock list below! Obviously based on your taste preferences, you may add or omit here and there. This is just to serve as a guide in assisting with what majority of the AC Art Of Food recipes will contain. So take advantage of my pantry must haves and start collecting today!
It's not just for party supplies and beach noodle toys anymore. Yes our neighborhood dollar store I have found lately, is the 'go-to' spot for many of our household needs. Not only that, but when my kids visit their grandparents, they always look forward to their ride to this frugal establishment with Papi for their shopping spree- now that's just genius! I mean, my 19 year old just stays home and is obviously not as excited, but his 4 and 8 year old siblings go wild at the sheer thought of the candy and toys they'll grab inside this place!
As I stated before, The Dollar Store is where folks usually go for the last minute gift bag, party napkins, balloons, etc. But I have also picked up some fabulous nail polish colors, mail packaging and office materials, greeting cards (good ones too!), wine glasses, and cookbooks for four quarters a piece! What's more, brand name and off-brand comparable food stuffs are also found on the shelves. Everything from frozen fruits and vegetables to seasonings and condiments are found in these stores and make perfect 'cents' to your budget! (see how I did that, ha!)
Check out the article in the link below from BuzzFeed and see if the 12 items they list will save you money on your grocery bill too!
*12 WAYS GROCERY SHOPPING AT THE DOLLAR STORE CAN SAVE YOU MONEY*
Words simply cannot express the sheer joy I felt the day she arrived. So beautifully packaged, just for me. I almost felt like she knew me already and that I would love her forever the way she fit so securely in my arms the very first time I picked her up. Packaged so perfectly, and oh so sturdy! And the hum. No, she wasn't loud like the others you see. And yes, it is very common for them to get loud, but not my baby. No, she hummed without making all that racket like those others. What you ask, that could fill me with so much joy and glee? A baby? A puppy? No....my very first VITAMIX!!!!
See, you have to understand, I have been wanting one of these babies ever since I saw over 10 years ago how the product rep on TV would throw a rock in this sucker and make sand! If it could do that to a rock, surely goodness and mercy it could make my smoothies smooooooooth as a puree! And it does, it really does!! Super simple to use and clean up- I mean just plug it up, one flip up and a dial for speed and another for extra speed and blending, rinse out thoroughly when you're done. But that's just it, you're not done! You want to use it EVERYDAY....and you can! You should! Ooooh, the possibilities are endless! Recipes from my fresh and garlicky chilled homemade gazpacho, to an anti-inflammatory warm and creamy turmeric spiced tea for your sinuses, all can be made in a matter of seconds with this baby....I mean, Vitamix. But the kicker, the real eye-opener that made me realize that it was more than worth the price after all these years of waiting and contemplating, was the fact that it could beautifully blend wheat grass. WHEAT GRASS!! You know, the super-SUPER food that's juiced and sold for about $8 per ounce in your local well known smoothie shops? I now purchase a bundle of wheat grass myself that runs me anywhere from $4-$7 and I can get about 10X as much for literally a fraction of the price! Now in my opinion, that more than pays for itself.
Now...do you have a Vitamix? Well, what are you waiting for?!? Can't afford to part with that much cash all at once? My foodie lovers, please know that QVC is a beeeeeeeauuuuuutiful place!
If you do have a Vitamix, comment below and let me know your absolute favorite things to make in yours. If you don't have one yet, what are you waiting for? Your body will thank you for it....over, and over, and over again!! Yeeeeeaaaahhh baby!
Fresh Abstract Garlicky Gazpacho (A Summertime Fav of mine!)
Soothing Sinus Healing Turmeric Tea
Now I am always in search of a quick, easy, and nutritious, snack/meal replacement option, just in case I run out of my homemade ones when I'm on the go. And if it's peanut butter, even better! This 'PERFECT Bar' is definitely my top choice when it comes to this. I first saw and sampled this delicious bar at a vendor demo in an Atlanta Costco back in 2016. A young female looked to be running the booth with the help of an older gentleman. I inquired to her about the contents and how the bar derived. She proceeded to tell me of how it was a family recipe that they decided to share with the world. She also went on to share that this was not just any protein packed snack bar- it really eats like a meal in regards to keeping you satiated. And the contents, ooooooooh the contents. I mean these bad boys are loaded with clean, whole foods! There are actual plants hidden inside like kale, spinach, and alfalfa, and more, but all you taste is peanut butter goodness that matches the scrumptiousness(yep, made that up) and density of an all-peanut butter cookie! And because the 'lack-of-crap' and preservatives in its ingredients, these bars have to be refrigerated!! I've seen them sell around the $2/$2.50 mark each which is not bad at all considering what you're putting in your body and that it can keep you satisfied for a couple of hours, I mean, it is a meal after all.
So if you haven't picked one up for yourself, stop by the refrigerated area in the natural food section of your favorite grocery market and grab the absolute most 'PERFECT Bar' and leave a comment below letting me know if you experienced the same delight I did when I took my first bite!
Abstract Spice is AC Art of Food's beloved universal savory seasoning that makes everything DELICIOUS! It's an amazing all-natural savory blend of beneficial herbs and spices with a mineral rich Himalayan sea salt base. This gourmet seasoning is phenomenal on vegetables, meats, seafood, bbq, and even popcorn!
I decided to upgrade the packaging due to recent malfunctions of the previous where the sides were tearing (that sucks!). Now, not only is this pouch sturdier, it also locks in freshness, is leak-proof, and secures the smell to the beautifully sunset colored contents where it belongs, inside!
I'm super excited! And it seems like I'm not the only one- read below!
"If you don't have this spice, you not living right. Lol. I'm hooked!!!
Please contact @ac_art_of_food for yours. Omg. I use it on everything. About to cook this fish with it!!! Thanks A.C.!!!"
- Latoya McFadden
"Made this for breakfast using this (Abstract Spice) made by @ac_art_of_food.. OMG it was SO good. Please check out her recipes, order her cookbook and the all spice: www.acartoffood.com/maymejax
- Laticha Jones
"About last night... #AREYOUHEARTHEALTHY...#stuffedpeppersFreshFromMyGarden
#GroundTurkey #Garlic #Onions #BrownRice
#FreshTomatosFromMyGarden #vegbroth #vermontcheddarcheese and #AbstractSpice from https://www.facebook.com/acartoffood/"
- Simply Produce, LLC- Deanna Butler, Owner
"I finally used it on my oxtails.#Delicious #ACartOfFood #Support"
- Charri Hill
"Thank you to my line sister AC's ART of Food for my Abstract Spice. Blackened salmon with roasted broccoli + abstract spice! So good! Visit the MaymeJax
Gourmet Boutique on www.acartoffood.com. Follow her on Insta and FB. #food — in Nashville, Tennessee. "
- Salynn Johnson
"The real deal! #acartoffood"
- Andrea Wilkerson
ORDER YOUR ABSTRACT SPICE PACKS TODAY!!
Be sure to visit my MaymeJax Gourmet Boutique to stock up on your packs for the holiday😋
DON'T FORGET TO LEAVE YOUR COMMENTS!
I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream.....because it usually gives us a bubbling gut, ugghhhh!! Luckily, in my search for all things deliciously-culinary health related, I stumbled upon a couple of tasty lines of lactose-free ice creams that are proven to be easy on the belly rumbles, lol! Even better, one is actually vegan (and just so happens to be my favorite!). This just goes to show that more and more people are finding their way to a more plant based lifestyle and are demanding it be tasty!! Well, from the looks of it, the food producers are listening!
So enjoy the video, and don't just take my word for it, head out there and find your favorite! And PLEASE be sure to comment below and tell me what you think!
Make it a Great Tasting Day!
This beautiful sister right here touched my spirit and inspired my soul! DeAnna's food journey, no, her life journey alone is so faithful and filling, it's no wonder we stood in her store and talked for almost an hour yesterday! She's constantly looking for ways improve her already prized jewel, Simply Produce on Roosevelt Hwy in College Park, Georgia. Her suppliers consist of local gardeners and farmers right here in our own metro area- now you can't get more local than that!! It was a beautiful site seeing such a diverse group of customers walking through her door to fuel their bodies with nature's produce by way of SP! (There was a line waiting for the doors to open!!) Her knowledge and expertise about farming fresh fruits and vegetables is stellar. And no need to worry if you don't see what you need on her shelves- she SPECIAL ORDERS for your desired need!! The customer service is phenomenal! And EVERYONE knows that AC thrives off of GREAT customer service, given and received. So I already knew when I walked up and she greeted me as 'Queen', this was the place for me!! Beautiful people, phenomenal heart and passion for the love of feeding the soul, and awesome fresh local produce conveniently available right here in our community, 'Simply Produce' is AC Art of Food’s new spot for always local, always fresh produce.
Now let me get off here and make my list for next Saturday!!!! *GO SEE DEANNA at Simply Produce- it'll do your body good!!!
Simply Produce LLC
3375 Roosevelt Highway, Suite F
College Park, GA 30349
Satuday 10am- 5pm
*Closed Sunday & Monday*
Make it a Great Tasting Day!
Greetings & Salutations!
As I stated in my earlier post, I am on a new health kick for 2010 and beyond. With this transition comes the research of finding low-calorie/fat/sugar healthier alternatives and lifestyles. Well for this week I’ve researched a bit in the area of juicers. I would love to juice up my recommended daily servings of 3 fruits and 4 vegetables in the morning and get it all in for the day! Wouldn’t that be great!
I’ve solved the question of where and what to buy (Forest Park Farmer’s Market primarily, Dekalb County Farmer’s Market when I can get there) every weekend for the fresh goods! And the Jack LaLanne Juicer….I think…?
I tell you, I sat down one Sunday morning and was mezmorized by this man and his wife! Already knowing the value and importance of juicing, the infomercial really made me want to get up and get one already! Obviously I am their target and the paid advertising spot did its job.
So my question to you, ‘Is Jack LaLanne’s juicer really the best for my buck or is there another daring enough to compete?’
The following juicers made my cut, PLEASE help me to narrow down:
– Jack LaLanne’s Power Juicer
–Sharper Image® Super Juicer
-Hamilton Beach 67650 Juicer, Big Mouth Pro
-Waring Pro JEX328 Juicer, Health Juice Extractor
Please help! Feel free to comment also on any good juicers you don’t see listed.
Remember, SHARING is caring!