Sunday, January 18, 2015

Flax Seed Banana Bread


My weekday morning routine usually consists of a green smoothie and a "healthy" muffin or yummy bread. Let's be honest, I could eat a buttery almond croissant every morning but I try to save those for special occasions. You know, like the weekend. :)

One of my all time favorite recipes is this Banana Almond Muffin recipe but when I want to do something different with my ripe bananas, I go for a more traditional banana bread. This recipe is great because it is made with coconut oil and maple syrup. I even add greek yogurt for some protein. The yogurt is an alternative to a banana so, if you don't have the greek yogurt, just add in another ripe banana instead.

Flax Seed Banana Bread
adopted from my fav, Smitten Kitchen

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2 large ripe bananas
1/3 cup greek yogurt
1 large egg
1/3 cup coconut oil, warmed until it liquefies
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp table salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour (I used Bob's Red Mill)
1/4 cup flax seed

- Grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan with some of your coconut oil and set aside.
- In a bowl (I used my KitchenAid stand mixer), mash up the bananas and then mix in the yogurt.
- Whisk in egg, coconut oil, brown sugar, maple syrup and vanilla.
- Add baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and still until combined.
- Still in flour (1/2 cup at a time if you are using the mixer) and the flax seed.

Pour mixture into your prepared loaf pan and bake for 50 minutes or until your toothpick comes out clean when you test it.

Note: Let the bread cool in the pan before you remove it. I have no patience so I usually pull my bread out too early and haven't allowed it enough time to cool and finish baking in the warm pan. It is easier to slice if it is cooled too.

Enjoy! 

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Good Vibes at Cooper's Hall

This was my third trip to Cooper's Hall and it won't be my last. I like the ambiance and the "good feel" this place has. Every time we go, my girlfriend and I daydream about how stunning a wedding reception would be. It is just so lovely.

Cooper's Hall is a working winery and taproom, so it is very industrial, which I love. All their house wine is served from the tap and we all know how crazy I am for this. Remember when I discovered Vancouver Urban Winery in B.C.? It reminds me a lot of that place. Of course, they have beer on tap and craft cocktails to please the masses, but I always go for the wine.

The first two times I visited CH was just for wine at the bar but I couldn't help but notice all the great food coming from the kitchen. At first, I didn't think it was really a place to order food, but I was dead wrong. Since I have no self control, I decided this time I would try the house stew - green chili pork with white bean and hominy. Yeah...I will be emailing for the recipe. Oh, and let's add some crème fraîche and serve with bread too. So good.


I can always count on a great night with great company at CH. This visit, I decided on their white wine flight so I could try their Gewurztraminer, Riesling, Chardonnay and Cascadia White. My favorite was the Cascadia White because it was crisp and refreshing. 

You can visit Cooper's Hall on a cold winter night for the warm and cozy vibe or check it out in the summer when they have all the rolling garage doors open. You won't be disappointed! 

404 SE 6th Ave
Portland, Oregon
503.719.7000
open mon-thu 4pm - 10pm | fri-sat 4pm - 12am 

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Welcome 2015!

I am having post-holiday blues, but also, really looking forward to an exciting new year. It is amazing how liberating it feels to say good bye to one year and welcome another . In the past, I haven't really put much thought to my resolutions or goals for the year, but I think that is about to change. My biggest goal this year is to give Endless Eats a much needed makeover and more attention in general. Here are a few things to look forward to:

(heck, now that I am publishing them, then you can all hold me more accountable)
  • Work on my food photography. I got this beauty as a Christmas/birthday present and looking forward to taking it everywhere with me.
via Amazon
  • New blog design. It is time for a refresh and an update. Here are some great ones on Etsy but also, I love how simple the Spook Fork Bacon logo is. 
via Spoon Fork Bacon
  • Start a series or two. Would love to have monthly posts that might include themes like best takeout spots, restaurants with outdoor seating, cocktail of the month etc. I am open to requests too! Please share your ideas with me! 

Cheers to a brand new year filled with lots of eating and drinking!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Finally...P.R.E.A.M at Ned Ludd

I have to say...Ned Ludd has been on my list for a long time but I never found a huge desire to get to their restaurant, until....Pizza Monday. I heard about PREAM from a friend and figured I would check it out eventually, because yes, pizza rules everything around me. 

Ned Ludd has been bringing in red and white checkered table clothes and playing the awesome throwback R&B tunes for about a year now. PREAM makes Portland Mondays a little bit better. 

There was no wait and we got a table quickly. The menu is simple with a few salads, pizzas and recently added...pasta! We went for a spinach mushroom pasta and a sausage pizza with a béchamel sauce and chile oil. Not your traditional pizza, but definitely delicious. The popular pizza was the traditional Margherita and I WISH we would have gotten it. Gah...it looked so fabulous. Shocking...I wanted basil, tomatoes and mozzarella. 

If you have a larger group, don't worry because they also serve pizza in their private space, Elder Hall, right next door! 

It is a great spot and the perfect way to start your week. Ned Ludd is cozy with a visible wood fire oven and rustic ambiance. Their team brings out your order as it is ready so a fun place to go for sharing. You all know me...I LOVE sharing. 


               
               

3925 NE MLK Blvd 
Portland, Oregon 
503.288.6900
pizza monday | 5pm - close
open tues - sun 5pm - close | sun brunch 9am - 2pm


*Check out this article about PREAM - you might not have to wait until Mondays anymore. New space opening in SE Portland dedicated to pizza.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Astoria Day Trip for Beers & Baked Goods

One of the best things about living in Portland is the ability to take day trips at the drop of a hat. This includes day trips to the Oregon Coast, Mt. Hood, The Gorge or Wine Country. My brother recruited me to join him and his girlfriend on a drive up the coast to Astoria. Oh my gosh...what a day it turned out to be. It was an incredible November day. Look at those blue skies! 


Naturally, I center most my adventures around food but we needed to work up an appetite first! We decided to explore the Peter Iredale shipwreck and Fort Stevens State Park. I haven't been there since I was a kid so it was neat to read about the history this time. But of course, we still acted like kids and took turns climbing it like a jungle gym. 

Next stop, Fort George Brewery & Public House. This is probably one of the most well-known places in Astoria, except for the my recent discovery of Bowpicker Fish & Chips. Do you like food trucks? Well, this place is a food boat. Simple menu with fish and chips served on land from the bow of a boat. Anyway...back to Fort George. We did the tasting flight which offered over a dozen samples! Good thing we shared. I really liked their Oatmeal Pale Ale and their seasonal, Java the Hop. It is like this coffee, chocolate, smooth IPA. It is not dark like a stout and easy to drink. Oh and if you are feeling crazy but don't want beer, they have a Wasabi Ginger Ale. Yes, woah.


Next stop, Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe. Why? Because we needed a cookie after all those savory beers. It also helped that it was in the same building as Fort George. We sampled a Swedish Limpa bread...who has tried this? It was a first for me and such a nice treat with flavors of orange and fall spices. I tasted the anise seed instantly but was told their was fennel in it too. Delish! This is not their recipe, but I imagine this is similar to what I ate. We walked out with a large chocolate ginger molasses cookie and that poor cookie didn't make it a block. We devoured it on our walk to Buoy Beer Company.


Buoy Beer Company was neat, I wished I took more photos. Their taproom is right on the water so there are great views of the ocean and all the ships coming in and out. We went for clam chowder and sweet potato fries. The best kind of comfort food on a crisp, fall day at the coast. There was an incredible rainbow over the ocean that captured most of the patrons attention. We will have to visit again when we can spend more time sampling all the beers. The rain was coming, so we wanted to get on the road quickly.


We hit the jackpot in Astoria and I was pleasantly surprised with how far this little coastal town has come. Next visit will call for an overnight stay because I want to try the pre-Prohibition cocktails at Albatross.

all open seven days a week

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Nuvrei's MAC BAR in the Pearl

                   

Nuvrei Pâtisserie & Cafe has decided to step up their game and provide Portland with it's very own MAC bar. I had the privilege of attending a launch party where I was able to sample croissants, macarons and bagels...all house made. I have only visited Nuvrei one other time and clearly, I have been missing out. The almond croissant I took with me barely made it out of the car. I mean really, a fresh croissant needs to be eaten on the spot. 

When I arrived, my mouth was welcomed with a buttery, warm croissant (yup...I had two) before I even had a chance to walk in the door. Oh yeah, why am I here again? The macarons...let me get back on track. Nuvrei has always had a great reputation for their perfect macarons and now they have a special  MAC BAR to feature all their incredible flavors. My favorite of the night was chai but I also sampled chestnut, hazelnut and white chocolate. Next time I visit, I want to try earl grey and espresso. Nothing like having dessert for dinner! My kind of night. 


This is great place to stop and cozy upThe Pearl District or if you are looking to give the gift of dessert, stop in for a dozen macarons. Oh and their coffee is from Heart Coffee Roasters, which is a bonus!
404 NW 10th Avenue
Portland, Oregon
503.972.1700
open mon - sat 7am - 5pm | sun 8am - 5pm

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Muselet Restaurant & Wine Bar - October Wine Dinners

It is time to get fancy! South Waterfront will be the home of a new restaurant serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. Muselet Restaurant & Wine Bar will open their doors in December but until then, you can attend one of their champagne wine dinners at Jacobson Salt Co. in just a couple weeks. Guess who has EXCLUSIVE details? This girl!



Muselet will feature French-influenced cooking from Chef William Harper, a veteran of several of Portland's finest restaurants, with a food-pairing focus on Champagne and regional sparkling wines. This new restaurant and wine bar is a perfect match for me because I love bubbles and I don't need a special occasion to drink them.

Once this 80 seat restaurant (+ seasonal patio seating!) is open, then I will share my experience but for now, check out one of these three opportunities for a sneak preview!

October 24th - Celebrate International Champagne Day!

  • Hors d’oeuvres and six courses, each paired with Champagne.
  • Four producers of Récemment Dégorgé (prestige) ‘grower’ Champagnes from France will be in attendance and seated among guests:
    • Rodolphe Péters, Champagne Pierre Peters
    • Arnaud Margaine, Champagne A. Margaine
    • Jean-Baptiste Geoffroy, Champagne Rene Geoffroy
    • Laetitia Billiot, Champagne H. Billiot Fils. 

Location: Jacobsen Salt Co. 602 SE Salmon St, Portland
$150 per person, including wine pairings, excluding gratuity. Limited seating.

October 25th - Hommage to the Greatest Champagne Houses in the World

  • Hors d’oeuvres and six courses, each paired with Champagnes from the prestige cuvée of Moët Hennessy, including Moët & Chandon, Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin, 
  • House of Ruinart, House of Krug and Dom Pérignon. Representatives from Moët Hennessy will be present
Location: Jacobsen Salt Co. 602 SE Salmon St, Portland
$150 per person, including wine pairings, excluding gratuity. Limited seating.

October 31st, 4-6:30pm - Bubbles & Treats Halloween Sparkling Wine Hour

  • Start your Halloween celebration with us! Guests will taste a selection of the Veuve Cliquot and sparkling wines from around the world. Enjoy generous hors d’oeuvre ‘treats’.
  • Special selection of bubbles will be available for purchase.
  • Most creative costume will receive dinner for two to Muselet.

Location: Umpqua Bank, South Waterfront, 3606 SW Bond Ave, Portland
$35 per person. Limited tickets available.

Reservations: ron@museletpdx.com or 503-706-4671