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Bread

La Brea Bakery – Take & Bake Holiday Stuffing Rolls

Posted in Bakery, Bread

Good Morning Friends!

While wandering the aisles of Safeway yesterday looking for anything new gracing their shelves, I was starting to become a little disheartened that I hadn’t found anything that piqued my interest. It wasn’t until I made my way over to the bakery tables that I spotted these little babies tucked into the corner. Holiday food already eh?

If you aren’t familiar with La Brea Bakery – you should be. They are and award winning bakery that got its start in the Los Angeles area of California. Known for selling out of their bread every day, they have since expanded their operations offering take and bake items through grocery stores as well as opening cafes across the country serving up their tasty chewy bread that is still made from the original starter.

Back to the holiday portion that I mentioned – this is about the time of year that I start taking bets of when the first holiday ad is going to pop up. Upon discovering these yesterday I immediately called my mom, overly excited. I mentioned how I thought it was a little strange that I found Holiday Stuffing flavored anything in stores already, but she mentioned that she thinks she might have seen an ad in a recent printing of an AARP magazine for something Christmas related. Hey companies, its only May – stop it with the Christmas creep.

One thing that I love at Thanksgiving is stuffing – and one thing that I love ANY time of the year is bread. Thanksgiving stuffing AND bread mixed together? SIGN ME UP. I guess one could argue that stuffing is made of bread but that’s neither here nor there.

My toaster is a bit temperamental and went a little scorchy on this roll, but this was not going to stop me from enjoying this tasty sage-y, celery-y, thyme-y, pepper-y cloud of heaven. I may or may not have tried to also cut my thumb off slicing this roll – yikes. Dressed this guy up with a little bit of butter and went in for the first bite.

This bread is deliciously soft an chewy. My mother would no doubt turn these into hockey pucks, but they are the perfect texture. However, despite the delicious taste, I was completely underwhelmed. Despite all the flavors boasted on the back of the package, I did not really taste much of them. I was expecting a robust mixture of flavors but was met with a whisper. Maybe if I bake them in a normal oven the flavors will develop a little more but I was disappointed. Don’t get me wrong, the rolls are really good, but I was just expecting something more flavorful. I think I will whip up a small batch of cranberry jam, some instant potatoes (since I can make those in a really small batch) and some turkey to make myself a small Thanksgiving sandwich. Now I am drooling again.

Found at Safeway

May 16, 2018
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Krispy Kreme – Limited Time – Nutter Butter Donut & Chips Ahoy Donut

Good Morning everyone! Soooo… does anyone really enjoy going to meetings? When I started working many moons ago I discovered that meetings are the voicemail of office work. JUST TEXT ME THE DETAILS. The only good part about meetings are that they occasionally have food. I was tasked with procuring said food, mostly because I am the first person to the office every day and I have a company credit card (ayyyyye). Donuts were requested and the closest (and only?) donut shop to my work is a Krispy Kreme. I prefer Krispy Kreme’s sour cream donuts to their original glazed, but that’s just me.

I grabbed a dozen and one of the Nutter Butter donuts for myself, because let’s face it, peanut butter ANYTHING is probably going to be delicious – unless you are allergic, then deadly. BUT ANYWAYS. I dropped off the donuts in the conference room and retreated to my office to enjoy my tasty breakfast snack.

Let’s just start with that this donut was smaller than I thought it was going to be – but that was OK, I don’t need a donut the size of Texas to start my day. According to Krispy Kreme, this donut is dipped in peanut butter icing, topped with Nutter Butter crumbles, and drizzled with peanut butter icing. This sounds like a peanut butter lovers dream – except I was somehow completely underwhelmed with peanut butter flavoring. I liked the pieces on top, which gave it a nice bit of texture but overall this was hardly peanut buttery at all. I think they really could have knocked it out of the park if they had oped for a peanut butter flavored cream instead of peanut butter flavored glaze. I would totally pass on this donut again.

Fast forward roughly 7 hours and I have been running around back and forth from my office to my other desk in our 14,000 square foot warehouse – completely ignoring the hunger pangs that have been plaguing me all day since my Nutter Butter let down donut. I didn’t really have time to run out and grab something to eat and I remembered that there was nearly a full box of untouched donuts sitting in the conference room. I made the trek up the front of the building and grabbed the box, presenting it to my coworkers like some sort of donut deity and slyly took another donut for lunch. Do I need two donuts in one day? No. Did I eat two donuts in one day? Yes. Am I proud of it? In the immediate moment, yes in the long term, no. Introducing the Chips Ahoy chocolate chips donut. Doughnut?

Needless to say I was starving judging by this picture because I took a big ole bite before giving it a proper introduction. I will be the first to admit that Chips Ahoy chocolate chip cookies are pretty hit and miss for me. Sometimes i am really into them, other times they are a paltry attempt at satisfying a craving for fresh baked cookies. I was concerned that the cookie on top would break my two front teeth but it turns out, that baby is a soft bake. Nice job guys. I found this donut rather delicious. The cookie dough cream on the inside with the dark chocolate and cookie on top really hit the spot. I would definitely eat one of these again.

The only donut of the limited time trio that I did not get to try was the Oreo cookies and cream, but let’s be real – I think we can imagine what that bad boy tastes like and the only people that wanted that donut were the people that voted for the cookies and cream Oreos that were released a while back.

April 23, 2018
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Ihop – Limited Time – Cinnamon Toast

Good Morning y’all! Normally I don’t review food from eating establishments or fast food places but I had this plate of cinnamon-y goodness and thought I would at least have to tell the internet about it. Ihop has a Kings Hawaiian Limited Time menu insert until the middle of June this year. The other day I was talking to a coworker and told him about the deliciousness that I was excited to partake in, and he revealed a really unsettling truth to me – he had never had Kings Hawaiian bread before. UHM EXCUSE ME?

Surely he was mistaken and I frantically brought up a picture of the fluffy, soft, tasty, delicious, buttery, tasty bread morsels for him, thinking maybe he didn’t know what he was saying, but NOPE, never in his life had he heard of Kings Hawaiian Bread. While I quietly grieved for him, I fantasized of the tasty bread in french toast form.

Now, I don’t really frequent Ihop – I find their food to be okay on the scale of delicious breakfast food, especially for the price. Don’t get me wrong, I am all about paying premium dollar for a tasty meal, but Ihop just doesn’t really do it for me.

There are three offerings using the Kings Hawaiian Bread sweet rolls, Strawberry Banana French Toast, Kings Hawaiian French Toast (duh), and Cinnamon Toast. The difference between the Kings Hawaiian French toast and Cinnamon Toast is that they add a cinnamon smear (gross terminology there guys) and cream cheese frosting to the Cinnamon Toast. I oped for the over-the-top, coma inducing Cinnamon Toast because why not?

I was unprepared for the plate that was being presented to me. I think mostly because I was expecting something slightly different looking due to the picture in the menu. Expectations vs. reality, I guess? The portion sizing on this was decent as this was very rich and sugary. It is made with two Kings Hawaiian sweet rolls cut in half and then doctored up with french toast coating and the above mentioned smear.

Overall I thought that they were pretty good. I was slightly disappointed because the smear, cinnamon, frosting, whipped cream, etc. really overpowered the Kings Hawaiian Bread flavor. The french toast was light and fluffy, which was really nice but you probably could have served me any soft dinner roll prepared in the same way and I wouldn’t have been able to tell the difference. Overall I probably wouldn’t get this again. Don’t get me wrong, it was delicious, but it was WAY too rich for any meal of the day (I had it for dinner). And this is coming from a person that will (and has) eat plain sugar from a jar. If I were to order it again I would probably ask that the toppings be served on the side so that I could prepare this to my liking. I actually have an idea of how to prepare something with Kings Hawaiian Bread based on this idea – we shall see if I actually execute it. Until then… Mahalo my dudes.

April 22, 2018
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Ohh how I wish…

Posted in Bakery, Bread

Ever see something put out by a company on April Fools Day that you wish was real? OH BOY DO I WISH THIS WAS REAL – maybe not as a perfume, but how about a Yankee Candle? I received this via email today from Boudin Bakery and immediately took flight in a day dream of tomato soup in a bread bowl. Maybe that’s tomorrows dinner. Mmmmm. Totally not sponsored, but totally salivating.

April 1, 2018
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GoPicnic – Chocolate Almond Butter & Croissant

Posted in Bakery, Bread

Remember when I used to update my blog on the regular? Yeah me too. Somehow, we now find ourselves in August, 8 months from my last update. A while back I posted how life has been crazy and I have been trying to figure out how to balance both life and blogging. As you can see, I still have yet to find that balance, but dammit, I’m going to try and make it work. I recently moved, so I have been getting settled into my new place and finally have internet. I have also been working like a mad woman at my job. While leiserly clicking around on my time card recently, I noticed that I have clocked over 100 hours of overtime this year. So, if you have been wondering where I have been, there is your answer.

I have quite the stockpile to work through, and my partner in crime never fails to give me grief about how I buy things with the intention of reviewing them, but they end up sitting in the cabinet never touched. Boo. So that needs to change, not only because I now look like a junk food dooms day prepper, but I honestly miss blogging.

My most recent snack food endevor was a small meal kit that was picked up at Target. The entire line of products doesn’t really appeal to me, mostly because I don’t like buying things that I know I won’t eat everything in the box. That is why I have a hard time buying things like Lunchables – because I am lactose intolerant, I never end up eating the cheese, so I feel like it is a waste (though not to mention that Lunchables are hardly food to begin with, but they are great in a pinch at work). When I saw this kit, I was originally turned off by the apricot fruit leather, because I am not a fan of apricots, but over on my personal blog, I gave myself the challenge of trying new foods so, I went with it.

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This meal comes in a cute little box that easily fits in a purse – although I would not consider this a meal per say, the calorie count would make it one.

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The contents were slightly underwhelming when opening the box. I don’t really know what I was expecting, but something a little more visually appealing for sure. I was concerned that because somehow they say that the croissant will stay fresh until the end of this year, that it would be dry and flavorless. I started with the fruit leather, and was actually quite surprised that I liked it. The flavor was sweet and the leather portion was chewy but not where I felt like I was having apricot jerky.

Next I moved on to the croissant and almond butter. While I was training to run a half marathon (which never came to fruition, though I am proud that I can run much longer than I previously could) I would often look for snacks that runners could carry and eat while running distances. A few friends suggested the single serve packs of Justin’s Almond Butter. Yeah, about that. Almonds and I have a relatively new forged relationship, and I just could not get into the taste, or the texture. I felt like I was eating sand. Too gritty, not enough flavor to off set it. I thought with the addition of chocolate that I might have a better experience – but that really didn’t turn out to be the case. One thing I think could be included with this kit would be a small knife or if the peanut butter was put in a small tub instead of a squeezable package.

I prefer to dip things like bagels and what not into peanut butter instead of spreading it on it, and that’s how I chose to eat this. I was actually surprised that the croissant was moist, buttery, and flaky, despite being able to sit on a shelf for a year. I was not a fan of the chocolate almond butter, but I honestly think it’s just a personal preference, not that it was bad. I was expecting something sweeter like Nutella, but the flavor to me was a bit underwhelming.

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Texture: 3/5 – The fruit leather was perfectly made. It was chewy and not tough, and I would definitely eat it again. The croissant was airy and light, like you would expect. I was honestly surprised by this and would by these in a stand alone packaging. The chocolate almond butter was a little gritty for my liking, but when combined with the croissant it was not nearly as noticeable.

Smell: 4/5 – The fruit leather smelled like fresh apricots, not artificial or sugary sweet. The croissant smelled like a typical croissant. Surprisingly the chocolate almond butter smelled more of almonds than of chocolate despite it’s appearance.

Appearance: 4/5 – I liked that this snack came in a cute recycled box that I could toss into my bag without worrying that the croissant would become a pancake. The packaging of the fruit leather was nice. The croissant and chocolate almond butter were both in no frills packaging. I would have liked to have seen a little more functional packaging on the almond butter, but that is just personal preference.

Taste: 3.5/5 – The fruit leather was my favorite portion of this box, despite having the most apprehension about it. The flavoring from the apricots was a nice balance of fresh and sweet. I would buy these stand alone to put in my lunch. The croissant was pretty good, but was not anything spectacular. I did not care for the chocolate almond butter and would have preferred something a bit sweeter in its place. Maybe if they punched up the chocolate flavoring just a smidge more, I would be interested in trying it again. Overall I am pretty indifferent about this pack, and would take it or leave it. Nice to throw in your bag if you’re into the flavor profile, but nothing that you couldn’t put together at home for a little less cashola.

August 16, 2014
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Graze Box – Number 2

Hey guys! Have any of you ever heard of Graze? It originally started in the UK and has been slowly branching out into the USA on an invite basis. The basic concept is that for $5 they will send you a mailbox sized box full of 4 different snacks every other week. There are over 80 different options to choose from and they are adding more.

Graze uses the following scale to rate how often they should send you something: trash, try, like, love. One of my New Years resolutions goals is to try new foods, so when I was picking out stuff I really made myself select try on more foods than I normally would.

Because of the amount of food, I will review the treats in a little bit different format than I normally do. Let’a go!

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The outside packaging is no frills.

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This weeks offering was mostly savory.

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Summer Berry Flapjack : rustic rolled oat flapjack with berry infused cranberries

I had never had a flapjack prior to this Graze box or even had an idea of what a flapjack was aside from the normal pancake. Apparently it is similar to what most would consider a granola bar but it was more chewy than a regular granola bar. The oats were moist and flavorful, and the cranberries were sweet and tart. If Graze messed up and sent me an entire box of this flapjack, I would not be sad at all.
Overall this mix : love

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Cheddar Gorge : cheese cashews, baked herb bites, and salsa corn sticks.

I bring my box to work with me so that I will have a few choices when it comes to snacks during the day. Unfortunately this mix fell victim to the mid-day munchies and I completely forgot to take a picture of it (though you can see a picture here). The cheese cashews were nicely seasoned, the baked herb bites were flavorful and crunchy, and the salsa corn sticks tied the entire mix together with a nice kick of spice. I thought the corn sticks were a little to corn-y but they were good.
Overall this mix : love

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Mississippi BBQ pistachios : roasted pistachios with BBQ seasoning.

If I had to choose my favorite nut, it would be a toss up between cashews and pistachios. My only qualm with pistachios is that occasionally you will get one that tastes exceptionally gross. BBQ flavoring is not my first choice when it comes to food, and I dislike BBQ sauce all together which I’m sure is illegal in some portions of the United States, but these pistachios were the perfect amount of salty and smoky flavoring. I also learned a trick that seemed pretty ingenious for those pesky pistachios that are not open enough to crack open with your fingers – if you take a shell from a previous pistachio you can use the end to pry the other one open – so far I’ve had 100% success rate with this method.
Overall this mix : love

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Smoky Gazpacho Dip : smoky gazpacho relish with wholemeal crisp bread slices.

I will admit, I have never had gazpacho in my life, so I have no metric to measure this by. The gazpacho relish in my container was more of a gelatinous blob that was not very inviting at all. I am more of a dipper than a scooper when it comes to things like dips and salsas, so I dipped one of the bread slices into the gazpacho gingerly and took a bite – no thank you. When I read what gazpacho was made of, it sounds like it would be pretty good, but the smoke flavor was far too overpowering to be enjoyable for my liking.
Overall this mix : trash

*please note that this post is my own opinion (like all other posts) and was not paid or compensated with goods from Graze for this post.

March 28, 2013
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Limited Edition Thomas’ Bagels – Cranberry

Posted in Bread

You guys, I have a terrible case of the hiccups. Anytime I eat bread too quickly, I immediately get hiccups. Some people think it is cute or funny, but they are downright painful. Does this happen to anyone else?

I spotted these bagels on JunkFoodGuy and knew I had to try them. My favorite juice is Cran Raspberry and I love bagels, these are kind of related right? I do not however like raisins, so this could get weird.

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Ughhhhh these hiccups are so distracting. I picked these bagels up during what will most likely be my last trip to Walmart between the hours of 8 am and 11 pm until January 1st. I hate large crowds and have been a retail slave for 10 years, I am totally over it. These have a bit of a more doughy texture, most likely from the cranberry bits baked into the bagel. The smell was mostly yeast with a hint of cranberry, kind of weird. After taking a large bite, I honestly could not really taste much of the cranberry in the bagel. A few more bites yielded the same result. I don’t know if the flavor of the cranberry changed during the boiling/baking process or if the juice changed the taste of the dough, but I did not care for these very much.

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Texture: 3/5 – The texture of these bagels are a little off. They are a bit doughy and the skin of the cranberry likes to hang around after.

Smell: 2/5 – The bag of bagels did not smell very appetizing, but the bagel alone was decent. You smell the bread more than anything.

Appearance: 3/5 – I thought for sure that the natural coloring of the cranberry would leech into the dough, but that’s not the case at all. These look OK, but the chunks of cranberry are a little off putting.

Taste: 2.5/5 – These bagels need to be reworked big time. They could potentially be good with cream cheese (I can’t eat that so someone will have to try it and report back) but alone? No thank you. Cinnamon raisin bagels have the undertone of sweetness and these bagels just have a weird taste. I would not buy these again.

November 19, 2012
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Thomas’ Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice English Muffins

Posted in Bread

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Raise your hand if you are tired of pumpkin flavored items yet? I am not one of those people. They could honestly make pumpkin flavored water and I would most likely drink it (that sounds really gross by the way, so don’t get any ideas food companies!) I spotted these English muffins at my local Walmart and had to give them a try. Apparently they were available last year, but I never had the opportunity to try them. I really love anything bread, and I think that if I had to choose one item to eat for the rest of my life, it would be a tough choice between chips and bread. I also like my bread lightly toasted (contrary to my mother, who enjoys her bread toasted to the point of cremation) I will literally hover over the toaster checking to see how brown the toast is getting. Now I sound like a crazy person. Anywho – the muffins!

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These had all the features of a regular English muffin. Odd shape, crumbs all over the bottom that get EVERYWHERE when eating them anywhere except standing over the trashcan or sink, nooks and crannies (remember those commercials?), and delicious flavor. I honestly failed to taste the pumpkin flavoring in these. I could definitely pick up the spices in pumpkin items. They mostly tasted like a regular English muffin with nutmeg and a hint of cinnamon added. I would enjoy these year round as an alternative if they offered them. Despite the claim of real pumpkin on the packaging, I’m still searching.

Texture: 4/5 – These have the same texture as a regular English muffin – with a small exception of small mushy spots where I think is the possible pumpkin that I am not tasting.

Smell: 4/5 – These babies smell delicious! But I also love the smell of ‘fall flavors’.

Appearance: 4/5 -These could easily be confused for wheat English muffins had I not seen the outside labeling. Nothing special about them, though I still hate the crumblies on the bottom that get everywhere.

Taste: 3/5 – I am disappointed at the lack of full pumpkin flavor – If you like your English muffins with a hint of nutmeg and cinnamon, you will really enjoy these. I would eat them again.

October 22, 2012
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