I won la guerra (trans: the war) against WLW, and I’m back!

Let’s rewind to Tuesday morning before Windows Live Writer and I got into a little tiff over publishing this post.

I woke up FULL.

You know your dinner was a just a little too gratuitous when you wake up full the next morning. When you’ve been up for three hours and still feel like you’ve just finished Thanksgiving dinner? That, mis amigos, is a tell-tale sign that (a) you’re Jewish and (b) last night’s gratuitous dinner followed your observance of Yom Kippur. If you are a food-lovin’ Jew like I—and all Jews are inherently food lovers, right?—you followed your 25 hours of fasting with 25 hours worth of food packed into one meal. Wise? No. Delicious and deserved? Si. Eating in excess never tasted so good. I’m tempted to skip over the entire weekend’s eats just so I can re-live Monday night’s amazing meal, but I’ll give you a quick recap before jumping into the holy goods.

‘Twas not so much a weekend of discoveries. Deliciousness and indulgence seem more accurate descriptors, which la hermana and I welcomed with open arms mouths.

I’d fully intended on cheffing up something creative for Melissa’s first meal home, but the girl knew what she wanted. Chinese food. Namely, NYC Chinese food. I can’t blame her. When I was away at college in D.C., I always craved Chinese food during my visits home. Our nation’s capital simply does not do Chinese like New York does. In fact, D.C.’s take on Chinese is unfailingly underwhelming, formidably greasy and authentically inauthentic. This is not to say that I didn’t spend my freshman year devouring the greasy goods every weekend at approx. 3 a.m. But, a few years into my college career, still bitter that those 3 a.m. eats played a large role in the frosh 15, I decided to stop force-feeding myself MSG-laden garbage that I didn’t actually enjoy. I opted to only enjoy MSG-laden garbage when it hailed from NYC and tasted delicious enough to warrant the deterioration of my health ;).

Phew, gracias for enduring that Chinese food-themed New Yorker holier-than-thou rant. We can get back to getting my sister fed on Friday night. I am not ambitious, talented or Asian enough to attempt creating homemade Chinese food on par with NYC’s offerings. So I gladly left dinner to the pros.

We ordered in from our go-to Sesame Chicken joint, 86 Noodles. Yea, there are so many Chinese restaurants in NYC that we have designated which ones to order from based on which dishes they prepare best.

I am usually a faithful chicken/tofu and string bean gal, but 86 Noodles does sesame chicken better than any other version I’ve tasted.

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We had some steamed dumplings along side, which were very good—but next to the sesame superstar, comparatively meh.

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I’m seriously tempted to write an ode to 86 Noodles’ sesame chicken, which infers that the mere sight of this delicacy triggers my wacky love endorphins. Which infers that you need this in your life a.s.a.p. Really, if you ever find yourself in NYC, I strongly urge you to put your healthy lifestyle on the back burner for a minute, and experience THE sesame chicken of all sesame chickens. And invite me, por favor.

Post dinn, we were fortunate enough to enjoy some interracial, clairvoyant cookies.

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Delicious indulgence continued throughout the weekend. Remember when I set out to bake something that might persuade my sister to stay in NYC forever? I brainstormed baked goods for hours before realizing that the answer was far simpler than any of the creations I’d conjured up in my cerebro (trans: brain).

PUPPY CHOW!

I used this recipe—maybe throwing a little more than 1 cup of chocolate into the melty mix.

I melted the butter, PB and chocolate together and then poured the mix over the Chex.IMG_0897

Then I shook the coated cereal in a big Ziploc bag with powdered sugar.

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Voila! The result…

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does not look so hot.

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But I promise you, this stuff is dangerously addictive. I am of that rare breed of people not obsessed with chocolate, and even I die for this stuff.

We made an admirable attempt at portion control…

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…only to discover that it’s rather easy to refill a bowl.

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In the end, all that was left was…IMG_0946

Oh wait, I lied. You see those crumbs in there?

La hermana didn’t let those go to waste either…

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PB & puppy chow toast? I am proud to call her my sister.

Let’s see, other weekend eats included:

Makeshift PB&J Glo bites!

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I’ve been dying to make these since I saw them on Angela’s site, and—since I haven’t had the time nor all of the ingredients—I seized the opportunity to create my ugly step-sister version of the real thing.

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Warm bran muffin topped with almond butter and raspberry preserves.

This was SO GOOD. I can only imagine what the first-class edition tastes like!

I also ventured into some makeshift penne a la vodka.IMG_0941

I’m not big on Italian food—mostly because it’s so carby and lagging in the veggie department. I love vodka sauce—but penne a la vodka never sounds appealing to me because it’s just pasta and sauce.

So, when my sister decided she wanted to order in penne a la vodka, I offered to create a veggified version.

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Whole wheat penne, grilled zucchini, peas, sauteed onions & mushrooms and garlic in vodka sauce. Melty mozz on top.

I’m an equal opportunity eater when it comes to my veggie to pasta ratio—so I loved that our D.I.Y. penne a la vodka hosted an equal amount of veggies and penne. So much better than the straight penne version. Even my carb-lovin’ sister agreed. 

Another delish D.I.Y. weekend eat was this veggie and shrimp stir-fry.

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And that brown stuff on top?

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The greatest homemade spicy peanut sauce ever!

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I don’t have a recipe because I got a little schizo in the kitchen and just started throwing things into the mix. I know the following players were involved: peanut butter, milk, honey, soy sauce, garlic, sesame oil, sriracha and hoison sauce.

This was amazing, and I promise I will do my best to re-create it soon and measure out what I’m throwing into the bowl.

Ok, this brings us to Yom Kippur. This is the Jewish high holy day of atonement, a.k.a. we don’t eat (if you’re conservative, you don’t really do anything) for 25 hours to atone the previous year’s sins.

My problem with the whole Yom Kippur thing is: I can’t really think, let alone atone, when I’m hungry. But I manned up and did it for the homeboy.

We began our fast at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday night. Upon waking up on Monday, only mildly hungry, I found UPS outside with two packages.

Is it wrong that Yom Kippur morning felt like Christmas morning?

Jennifer, the creator of Barney Butter, offered to send me some samples last week, and here they are!

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I only jumped on the almond butter bandwagon a few months ago, so I’m still in the process of figuring out what my go-to AB brand is. I’ve heard great things about Barney butter, and once my spoon gets well-acquainted with those jars, I’ll let you know what I think. Thank you so much, Jennifer!

Package numero dos: A massively generous box of goodies from the people at Food Should Taste Good! 

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If you haven’t realized, I love FSTG chips. I haven’t tried any of the flavors they sent—except for the sweet potato, which I didn’t love but am willing to give another chance—so I can’t wait to test the non-Multigrain/The Works waters! I’m thinking a full review, flavor ranks included, is in order. Gracias, Beth, for the amazing package!

These A.M. presents, logically, proved to be quite the double-edged sword. On Christmas morning, you get to tear open your presents and commence playing immediately. On Yom Kippur morning, I tore into my goods only able to observe their beauty and imagine their tasty potentials.

After pacing around the goods for a while, I eventually tuned out the foodie devil sitting on my shoulder, tempting me to dip one of those cinnamon FSTG chips into the crunchy AB.

I was proud of myself for not pulling an Eve because the rest of my fast was surprisingly easy.

(The same did not go for my dear sister, who definitely said “I feel like f*@#ing Gandhi” several times throughout the day…)

Come 7:30, I was more than ready to eat. Every Jewish family has their own tradition when it comes to breaking the fast. Most common is a big spread of bagels, lox and deli foods. My family usually breaks the fast with Chinese food, but since my sister and I had our fix earlier in the weekend, we did things a little differently.

Mediterranean! My sister and I decided that mucho pita and mucho dipping options sounded like the perfect way to gorge ourselves.

We went to a restaurant in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn—First Oasis. It was my first time, but the food was increible.

We started with a giant platter of falafel, hummus, babaganoush, greek salad and grape leaves.

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It sort of looks average-sized, but this was huge.

We also had AMAZING tahini.

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Side salads.

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And an unpictured limitless basket of pitas for all of those incredible dips.

This could be a biased statement since this was my first bite of food in 25 hours, but THIS WAS THE BEST GRAPE LEAF I’VE EVER TASTED.

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THE BEST BABAGANOUSH I’VE EVER TASTED.

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THE BEST BALL I’VE EVER TASTED… (I don’t even have to say it.)

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It was massive and covered in toasted sesame seeds—which took my love for falafel to new level.

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Smushed in a pita with some salad and tahini.

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10 minutes later…  IMG_0978

Yea. 25 hours of FASTING results in FAST EATING. And that was only our appetizer.

Los main courses:

Chicken Sauteed: Boneless pieces of chicken breast sauteed w/ tomatoes, onion, green peppers, eggplant in tomato sauce served w/ house rice and salad

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Mussakka: Fried eggplant, tomatoes, onion, green pepper, potatoes baked in tomato sauce w/ mozzarella cheese served w/ house rice.

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Vegetable Ouzi: Mixed vegetables, rice, raisins, and nuts baked in phyllo dough, served w/ cucumber yogurt salad.

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This was definitely my favorite. Check out the innards…

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The stars were the chickpeas, golden raisins and toasted cashews. Oooh my god, I love Mediterranean food.

I am declaring this the best break-fast ever. I legitimately could not move after this meal—and into yesterday morning. But it was so worth it.

If you fasted, how did you break your fast? If you didn’t, what would you want to eat after hypothetically fasting for 25 hours?

Ok, my dears, I think this post might erupt if it carries any more food porn. (Perhaps, that’s why Live Writer refused to publish yesterday?) I have a really busy week—a rarity in my current state of funemployment—but I’ll still be posting regularly.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

-Sarah

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