Archive for the ‘Food Pictures & More’ Category

Heart Shaped Egg & Toast: Is It Romantic Or Spooky?

September 12th, 2010 No comments

I’ve always wanted to make Heart Shaped Eggs & Toast and just learned that it’s hard to get the Egg Yolk to perch in the center of the Bread — It tends to settle in one curve of the heart or the other.  Oh well, does it matter?  I think so, since the results look more spooky than romantic.  Did the freshly ground Pepper land perfectly to form eyeballs?  No, they’re fun props once employed for another project.  It’s funny how they instantly bring things to life. 🙂

I used Nature’s Pride 100% Whole Wheat Bread and large fresh (recall proof) Eggs.  To view other Nature’s Pride Bread recipes and info, check out this link.  Should the above be made again for Valentine’s Day or Halloween?  I wonder what Rorschach would say?

Buying Certain Items From The Bulk Aisle Can Save You Time And Money.

September 10th, 2010 No comments

I concur with the message in this video by the Bulk is Green Council.  You can save time and money buying certain items in the bulk aisle, rather than elsewhere scattered throughout the store.  I recently experienced its benefits at Henry’s Farmers Market — A great store for bulk.

Above is just a sliver of Henry’s bulk foods selection — Don’t forget to write the item number on each tag / bag sealer, so the checker will know how to ring it up.  Many items look the same, especially the powdered goods.  It can be a fair amount of writing if you get a variety.  This day we tried a little of a lot (about 15 items).  It was entertaining and we did see that money can be saved when needing a little or a lot of certain things.

I’m advised that it’s National Bulk Foods Day on October 23rd — Hhhmmm, it seems there’s a day for everything now.  Did you know it’s National Nibbles of Tidbits Day on December 3rd?  It is!  Until then, buy from the bulk foods aisle.

Why Do I Want To Try This?

September 9th, 2010 No comments

I’m pondering why I want to try this?  It looks kinda cool.  No disrespect to Eggs or Chickens or God, although what’s worse than eating ’em?  I do that.  Hhhhmmm, too deep right now and a downer topic for a food blog — Instead, check out more unique, interesting and funny food photos and videos at My Food Looks Funny.  They’ve collected some good stuff.

Nature’s Pride Bread Ambassadorship: Florentine Surprise Eggs & Toast.

September 8th, 2010 2 comments

When cooked, there’s a hidden Spinach surprise beneath each Egg.  This recipe was inspired by one prepared by Chef Jamie Gwen and my love of Eggs Florentine as an alternate to Eggs Benedict, another breakfast favorite — I combined aspects of each, along with Nature’s Pride 100% Wheat Bread to create the best marriage of all.  I’m calling this one Florentine Surprise Eggs & Toast.  They’re easy to make and produce a remarkable presentation of flavor.

This recipe was fashioned for potential Bread Ambassadorship to be bestowed by Nature’s Pride, an official Sponsor of the Foodbuzz Blogger Festival in San Francisco this November.  It would be a tremendous honor to be one of the chosen six — I’ll stress later about demoing it at the Pavilion, if selected.  Can I get a volunteer to dice the Onions and crack the Eggs? 🙂

As shown in photos (l – r) downward, I used Nature’s Pride 100% Whole Wheat Bread, and to be honest I’m not a big Wheat Bread gal, but do enjoy the double-wrapped freshness, texture and taste of Nature’s Pride Breads in general.  In my experience, the one’s I’ve tried have been exceptional — I’m happy to report.  This recipe was developed with it as the base.

The Florentine Surprise Eggs & Toast does rest on the “Toast” — First cut the Bread slices into rounds with a well-sized Cookie or Biscuit cutter, then toast them (light – medium) in the oven or toaster oven.  Both work well if you don’t burn ’em.  No neglect can happen.

Florentine Surprise Eggs & Toast
Recipe Ingredients, Instructions & Tips:

* Nature’s Pride 100% Wheat Bread  * Baby Spinach  * Eggs  * Sweet Onion 
*Deli Ham Slices  * Lemon Zest  * Green Onions  * Olive Oil  * Cooking Spray

Dice and caramelize Onions until golden brown, then stuff the same large pot with washed fresh Spinach.  Cook down the Spinach* and all liquid, stir in the Lemon Zest** and set mixture aside to drain.  Spray Cupcake/Muffin pans with preferred Cooking Spray and place one Toast round in each cup, then arrange the Ham*** slices formed into a cup over each Toast.  Add a portion of the drained Spinach mixture on top of the the Ham, crack an Egg over each, season with Salt and freshly ground Pepper, and then bake all in a preheated oven at 375° for 15 minutes.  Remove and transfer to a serving platter and/or awaiting plates and garnish with Green Onions.

* The amount of Spinach to use is sometimes hard to estimate.  For six Florentine Surprise Eggs & Toast I used about 6 – 7 cups of fresh Spinach.  Add approximately (2) tablespoons of the cooked Florentine mixture to each cup being sure to leave enough room for the Egg.  As a test, I also prepared one Florentine combo (pictured above) with uncooked cut Spinach and Lemon Zest and it didn’t turn out nearly as flavorful, thus it’s not recommended.  I’m always looking for a good tasting shortcut.

** Stir in 1/2 teaspoon of Lemon Zest after cooking the Spinach mixture.  Its addition is meant to bring in the essence of a Hollandaise Sauce, which is usually included with Eggs Florentine and Benedict.

*** Ask your Deli Guy/Gal to slice their finest Ham into medium thick slices (not too thick).  The pictured Ham slices were a bit too thin.  It’s best to use thicker slices, so the Egg doesn’t leak through.  If it does leak a little, it’s not the end of the world.  And believe it or not, the Toast base does adhere to the Ham top for easy removal from the pan.

Note:  I must state the following… As part of the Foodbuzz Tastemaker Program, I’ll receive a coupon good for a package of Bread.  That’s it.  The pictured loaf was on my dime, as I wanted to get started on this fun concoction.  I’ve learned that Wheat Bread is good to eat too.  Thanks for the consideration Foodbuzz and Nature’s Pride.  Enjoy the recipe!

Discovered An Amazing Tuna Through A Competitive Spirit.

September 6th, 2010 No comments

Have you tried Tonnino’s Tuna?  I just did and now I’m hooked.  But for the challenge Tonnino’s is currently hosting, I would’ve never tried their Tuna — Mostly because I’ve never been fond of canned Tuna, Tuna Salad, Tuna Casseroles and alike, nor a fan of unfamiliar jarred products.  After learning about Tonnino’s exceptional quality and the care that goes into their Tuna (and the $5,000 prize), I became interested.  And since they’re in search of video recipes and we’re wanting to experiment, all came together in one great recipe — Calypso Tuna Cakes.  I made our recipe/video entry with the pictured Tuna and the taste was delicious. 

Because the recipe is currently involved in a competition, we’ll post it here later or soon link to it elsewhere.  The instructional video is posted on Tonnino’s site — View at your own risk.  I look goofy, but the Calypso Tuna Cakes are guaranteed awesome.  It’s a winner in flavor.  The Tonnino Tuna Chef Challenge ends October 1st.  Enter here now or wish us luck!

Lychee: The King Of Fruits In South China.

September 5th, 2010 No comments

Just peeled my first Lychee fruit — They’re super easy to peel, but the fruit sure sticks to the seed (pit) pretty tightly, and the seed sometimes colors the fruit around it with a brown tint.  No wonder why I rarely see a pristine white, plump, seeded Lychee, at least where I’ve been.  It’s necessary to expose myself to certain things.  For total immersion I’ll book a trip to South China, where they are considered a symbol of romance and love. 🙂

Art For A Fruit Platter Or Breakfast: A Dolphin Banana.

September 4th, 2010 No comments

I recently saw a Dolphin Banana on a party fruit platter and was compelled to make the same out of this morning’s Banana and a Spinach Leaf.  It’s not bad for a first attempt, but I think its nose is a (little) too short — Either way it made for an entertaining breakfast.  Try it.

Tonnino Tuna Chef Challenge: Submit A Video Now Until October.

September 2nd, 2010 No comments

It’s time to submit a video to become the next Chef Ambassador in The Tonnino Tuna Chef Challange.  Tonnino, known for its high quality, hand filleted/packed Tuna is looking for the Next Tonnino Chef.  In addition to the title, the PRIZE is $5,000 towards the advancement of culinary education and a one-year supply of Tonnino Tuna.  I created an amazing recipe and now workin’ on a video (yikes) for a chance to win dinero towards future dinner-O’s.  I hope to fund my varied culinary education through classes, books, events, and all things food related to report on Nibbles of Tidbits — And I’d surely come up with a lot more Tuna recipes.

* The above photo doesn’t do the flavor of our entry/recipe justice — We’ll post more about [it] once our video is submitted.  Good luck all!

The Inaugural ‘OC Foodie Fest’ Report: This Is How It Rolled.

August 31st, 2010 No comments

The 2010 inaugural OC Foodie Fest officially happened at the Honda Center last Saturday and although I personally was unable to attend, Nibbles of Tidbits sent its favorite Guest Blogger, Bonnie and her trusty photographer, Andrea to enjoy and report about the event.  Somebody had to do it and wish it was me after hearing about it.  Bonnie writes the rest…

The food, the sun and the fun were all perfectly aligned at the Honda Center Saturday afternoon for the inaugural OC Foodie Fest, with over 8,500 people attending the sold out event and 49 gourmet food trucks. No doubt this will be the first of many more Orange County Foodie Fests to come.

Although there were officially declared favorites, the three of us unofficially agreed that the top banana — while bananas are served as an option on top of loukas, which are Greek donuts – should have gone to Louks Greek Gourmet To Go food truck. We think their lamb chops might be the best we have ever had. In fact, they were so good that we decided to take some home with us.

Apparently many others agreed, because while we ran back there at the end of our day, stood in line and paid for the perfectly seasoned and prepared chops, they ran out just one person shy of us.  To their credit, Louks refunded our money and served up an equally tasty Gyro sandwich as a substitute free of charge. Thanks for being so gracious, Louks!

Our next stop was the World Fare Bustaurant, a double-decker with room the top to eat and enjoy the people watching.  Our truffle infused macaroni and cheese balls were mouth watering. And we washed them down with a strawberry-basil-lemonade that was to-die-for. It had just the perfect amount of the basil flavor added to the tasty drink.

The last truck we ate from, Piaggio on Wheels, offered a truly a diverse cuisine. We could not resist trying the water served in a real coconut, empanadas and a bacon wrapped hot dog topped with both chipotle and chimichurri sauce. It was all delicious and truly gourmet food.

We would be remiss if we didn’t mention that all of the shopping provided by the Patchwork vendors was top notch and high quality. There was also an art show with live painting from eVocal, plus live local music and an area devoted just to kids. The O C Foodie Fest also gave back to the community, with a percentage of the proceeds going to three local charities, Child SHARE, St. Vincent’s Meals on Wheels and Pretend City.

The OC Foodie Fest was meant to bring exposure to the growing market in Orange County for food trucks, as well as to give the opportunity for LA trucks to branch out into a new area.  It succeeded on so many levels that we can’t wait for the next one!

THANKS to our Guest Blogger, Bonnie Flamm and event photographer, Andrea Stein for the excellent report and photos — I hope to attend next time.  Learn here where the trucks might be going next or follow them on Twitter.

Instant and Complete Picnic From Cost Plus: Consider It For A Good Time.

August 30th, 2010 No comments

When was the last time you had a picnic?  We mustn’t forget the simple enjoyment of a picnic.  It seems Americans don’t take enough pleasure in them.  While traveling through many parts of Europe, you’ll see people having picnics everywhere and often.  It’s a great thing.

We’re inspired to have more picnics and Cost Plus World Market, a favorite destination for unique and imported food items can make it happen on a moment’s notice.  It has everything one could need for a picnic.  We prepared for this one by getting ALL shown from Cost Plus, including the insulated picnic basket that transported the Salami, Cracked Pepper Smoked Salmon, Bruschetta, Roasted Artichoke Hearts, Pepper Jack Cheese, Assorted Crackers, Almonds, Pickles, Olives, Wine and Cookies.

This day it was too windy to show you it was too windy — Meaning, we couldn’t back up for a wide photo, since all hands were necessary to hold down the light stuff during the wind gusts.  It was (kinda) funny, until it blew over our Chardonnay, and it was a bit scary thinking the Smoked Salmon could possibly land on us, but ultimately it was a lot of fun.

We had this picnic in Temecula, near Pechanga Resort & Casino, where we took our Grandma to see her favorite singer, Engelbert Humperdinck.  Prior to the concert, we laughed eating the Orange Chocolate Rolled Wafers — They are sooooo darn good and fodder for immature jokes that transcend generations, Groucho Marx impersonations and more.

Coy With More Koi From Sherman Library & Gardens: Don’t Eat ‘Em.

August 28th, 2010 No comments

Today we’re heading to Temecula for a lovely picnic among other things and we have a guest blogger goin’ to the OC Foodie Fest to eat from the 50 Gourmet Food Trucks parked at the Honda Center today.  There’s a lot of good eats happening right now.  We’ll soon report about them here.  Until then, enjoy the beautiful Koi, eyes only — They want to be fed too. 🙂

South Coast Winery Restaurant & Tasting Room In Orange County.

August 26th, 2010 1 comment

Have you been to South Coast Winery & Tasting Room in Orange County?  It’s the sister restaurant to the Vinyard Rose restaurant in Temecula at South Coast Winery Resort & Spa

This was our first visit to South Coast Winery Restaurant & Tasting Room in Orange County.  We had a Happy Hour consultant meeting on their patio, a better location than our last meeting and more for Nibbles of Tidbits.  We didn’t get to explore the tasting room this time, but we’ll surely go back for that, especially since the pictured Happy Hour appetizers were impressive in quality and taste.  The service was good too.

The Sliders were juicy, the Parmesan French Fries and Wings were crispy, the Cheese & Fruit Platter couldn’t have been better, since all was fresh, chilled and large, and the Bruschetta flavors were perfect with the extra thin Toastettes.  All on the patio made for a nice meeting — Hope it’s here next time.

Cherry On Top: Self Serve Frozen Yogurt Your Way.

August 25th, 2010 No comments

Looking out through the pink dots, I used to feel so uninspired… cause you make me feel like [wanting] a natural Yogurt — The semi-related song popped in my head and couldn’t resist, since I actually was somehow inspired by the pink dots, natural Yogurt and fresh toppings at Cherry on Top.  As you may or may not know, we’ve been sampling various Frozen Yogurt shops all around town and just tried Cherry on Top.

We’re fans of the tart flavors and really liked their Original Tart and Blueberry Pomegranate.  We were hoping to try the Lychee Tart (sometimes available), as we’re currently hooked on Lychee’s taste, but it wasn’t being offered at the Huntington Beach location this day.

Each Yogurt shop we’ve tried has almost been better than the previous and we especially like the self serve options.  All have offered truly fresh fruit, along with a wonderland of colorful toppings that look equally good.  Although the topping selection is great, most are wasted on me, since I still can’t get past the simple Granola, Blueberry, Mango and sliced Almond combination.  We’ll go to Cherry on Top again.

09/13/10 Update:  For convenience, Cherry on Top will be opening the first drive-thru store of its kind — A first for any leading Frozen Yogurt company.  It’ll open in Culver City in September.  Check their website for more information.

Doctored Up White Cake Mix Becomes Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes.

August 23rd, 2010 No comments

I just posted a Cupcake Report as the Orange County Food Examiner.  It’s a fairly comprehensive report regarding Cupcakes in the OC.  The Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes pictured above were made using a White Cake Mix base.  We added Lemon Zest and Vanilla Bean to the Batter and then frosted 1/2 with a real Strawberry Buttercream Frosting and the other 1/2 with a Lemon Glaze (Lemon Juice and Powdered Sugar) — They’re fresh tasting and perfect for Summer Cupcakes.  We’ll definitely make them again.

Above photos were taken during and after the OC Fair Cupcake Competition — Check out the Examiner links for more information about that competition and Cupcakes in general.

Project Food Blog Contestant Profiles Are Going Up.

August 22nd, 2010 No comments

The Project Food Blog Competition starts in September and Contestant Profiles are going up.  We just posted ours that’s captured in the above screen shot.  During the (12) week competition, Contestants will be whittled down through participation in (10) challenges related to food blogging.  The ultimate prize for the last blogger standing is $10,000 and a “special feature” on Foodbuzz for one year.  Wish us luck!

Project Food Blog Contestants

Nibbles of Tidbits Contestant Profile

Zinc Cafe & Market In Corona Del Mar And The Ocean Nearby.

August 21st, 2010 No comments

We recently wandered into Zinc Cafe & Market in Corona Del Mar a half hour before closing time and happily learned that their Market Salads are 1/2 price during that time, the last half hour before closing.  It was great timing for us, thus we went crazy and got eight of them, five are pictured here and all are always good.  They offer a shady outdoor patio too, but we enjoyed our Salads on the beach (away from the seagulls) and for lunch the next day.  What a deal — It’s the best time to go there.

We didn’t capture the official name of each Salad, since we ate them so fast — Many are seasonal anyway, so you’ll just have to see what’s available and check out their website to see what’s possible.  They offer a lot and will tell you more than we can.

The beach is walking distance from Zinc Cafe & Market in Corona Del Mar.  If I could own a home anywhere around here, it would be in Corona Del Mar, near many restaurants and the amazing beauty pictured below.

The History Of Lemonade – Alex’s Lemonade Stand & The Daily Grill.

August 19th, 2010 No comments

Daily Grill restaurants nationwide will donate all of its proceeds from Lemonade sales on Friday, August 20th (National Lemonade Day) to a special nonprofit that was formed by a 4-year-old girl whose short life continues to make an impact.  Daily Grill founder, President and CEO Bob Spivak hopes to double $5,000 typically generated in sales and donate 100% to Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation for Childhood Cancer.  Daily Grill’s fresh-squeezed, hand-shaken Lemonade has been one of the restaurants’ signature items since 1988.

Alex’s story began in 2000 when the 4-year-old was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a form of cancer that often leaves its young victims unable to walk.  She defied the odds and managed to live an active, albeit short, life.  Her decision to hold a Lemonade stand to help doctors find new treatments and ultimately a cure for all childhood cancers, including her own, became her quest.  In just 4 short years, the “stand” raised more than $1 million.  Her parents, Jay and Liz Scott, have continued Alex’s legacy of hope after cancer ultimately took the youngster’s life at the age of 8 in 2004.  What started as the vision of one little girl has been embraced by a nation of volunteers.


Lemonade can trace its origins to the Egyptians when in 500 AD Lemon Juice was mixed with Sugar to make a beverage known as qatarmizat.

The first Lemonade “soft drink” debuted in Paris on August 20th, 1630.  The drink was made from Sparkling Water and Lemon Juice sweetened with Honey.

Frozen Lemonade made its debut in 1840 in Naples, Italy.

The earliest documented Lemonade stands were introduced by a young entrepreneur named Edward Bok who formed them in Brooklyn street cars from 1873 to 1876.  His background:

  • He was 10 when he began selling Ice Water for a penny to passengers in horse drawn carts who stopped to allow their horses water.
  • Other boys soon began copying Bok’s idea and stealing his business, so he made Lemonade instead and sold glasses for $.03 each.
  • Bok went on to win a Pulitzer Prize for The Americanization of Edward Bok: The Autobiography of a Dutch Boy 50 years later

* Lemonade stands were first referenced in the media by the New York Times in 1879.

* 4-year-old Alex Scott started the nonprofit Alex’s Lemonade Stand in 2000 after learning she had cancer and she sought to find a cure.  She lived only 4 more years and in that short time raised more than $1 million for cancer research.  That organization today has since generated more than $25 million nationwide for children’s cancer research.

* August 20 is designated National Lemonade Day and Daily Grill restaurants nationwide will donate all proceeds from its Lemonade sales that day to Alex’s Lemonade Stand.

For more information, visit Daily Grill or Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation.  Established in 1988, Daily Grills specialize in serving classic American fare at accessible prices in an atmosphere reminiscent of a traditional, upscale New York City grill.  The popularity of the concept has resulted in 21 locations in eight states.

NOTE: The above is a re-published Press Release, not often seen on Nibbles of Tidbits.  It happens occasionally when we believe the information to be important and/or interesting.  We previously attended a fundraiser for Alex’s Lemonade Stand at 50 Forks Restaurant and that report is linked here.

I’m A Pecan: What’s Your Nut Personality? Take The Quiz Here.

August 17th, 2010 1 comment

What kind of Nut are you?  I’ve heard that question many of times, hahaha, and now I know.  It appears I’m a Pecan for those who have wondered all these years.  Fisher Nuts has developed a Personality Quiz to help you determine which Nut you’ve always been.  Take the quiz now — It’ll be such a relief to finally know.  The mystery is somewhat solved. 🙂

PECAN: You are generous and loyal.  Friends and family love to be around you because you consider their needs first.  You are a tenacious, committed team player who doesn’t require recognition.  You are happiest when you share the credit with everyone around you.

Fish You Don’t Want To Eat: Koi At Sherman Library & Gardens.

August 15th, 2010 2 comments

The Koi Fish at Sherman Library & Gardens can’t be eaten, but are delightful to see — Instead Cafe Jardin and Tea Garden Creperie is recommended for food.  Sherman Library & Gardens is a notable place for High Tea, to stroll around varied gardens, visit a Koi Pond, shop, or even get married.  In some instances a $3 donation is requested and it’s well worth it.

Project Food Blog Competition: Nibbles Of Tidbits Is An Official Contestant.

August 14th, 2010 No comments

Working on a Logo for Project Food Blog — Nibbles of Tidbits, a SoCal Food Blog is an official contestant in the Project Food Blog Competition, which starts in September.  Contestants will be whittled down over (12) weeks through participation in (10) challenges related to food blogging.  The ultimate prize is $10,000 and a “special feature” on Foodbuzz for one year.  We’re gonna be opening up a can of… (probably something, oh, and that too). 🙂

Last Day For The ‘Friday Specials’ At The Orange County Fair.

August 13th, 2010 No comments

It’s the last weekend of the Orange County Fair and today is the final day to munch out on the $1.00 Specials (Fridays, Noon – 4PM).  During that time, most food stands offer something interesting to eat for $1.00.  We had all that’s pictured below, including Deep Fried Bull’s Testicles (yeah, that’s right) and much more.  It’s a great time to try different things.

Note:  Hover your cursor over each photo to learn a little more, or stop by each booth and ask ’em what they’re serving for $1.00.

Parfaits On The Bay: A Free Restaurant For Two That’s Open Any Time.

August 12th, 2010 1 comment

Thanks for the Parfaits on the Bay!  It may have been my first.  I’d enjoyed a Trifle or two, but not yet a Parfait, which I believe is roughly similar minus the Cake, as explained by my personal headless Chef. 🙂 He made these with layerings of Vanilla and Peach Yogurt, Blueberries, Blackberries, Raspberries, Strawberries, Granola and Whipped Cream.  We forgot to include the Banana, but it wasn’t necessary with all the fresh Berries that were included.

All ingredients were transported by backpack, while scouting out the best location to enjoy ’em.  We ultimately decided on Parfaits on the Bay, a makeshift restaurant that’s open any time — Private outdoor seating for two.  It was a beautiful day and a great idea for anyone.

“Serious Sliders” Recipe By The New York City Food Guy.

August 10th, 2010 No comments

I stumbled upon the above video by the NYC Food Guy — He sold me on the preparation of his Serious Sliders.  It’s different, easy and produces delicious Sliders (aka Mini Cheeseburgers).

After watching the video, we were seriously compelled to make these Sliders immediately and so did, as shown in the step-by-step photos posted below (left – right working on downward).  Hover your cursor over each photo to learn more.  It’s a fun recipe to make.

Thanks for the Serious Sliders NYC Food Guy — We’ll make ’em again.  They’re no joke!  FYI:  Lawrence, the NYC Food Guy says… “Sliders and Mini Cheeseburgers are totally different!  Sliders are actually Steamed Burgers, whereas Mini Cheeseburgers are just that, Mini Burgers.  They’re completely different animals.”  I think we may need to let a few restaurants know that.

Related Links:

Nibbles of Tidbits Sliders Smorgasbord

Sliders at Charlie Palmer at Bloomingdales