Thursday, July 26, 2012

Eating in the Carolina's

As I take you to some of our favorite eats, in this little culinary vacation tour, please click on the name of the restaurant and it will take you to their website to view the full menu!


Smithfield's Chicken 'N Bar B-Q 

(Morehead City, North Carolina)
For the real deal Southern BBQ, Smithfield's is THE place to go!

Circa 81 

(Morehead City, North Carolina)
Date night celebrating 8 years together. A perfect one it was!!!!
This is now our new 'date night place' when visiting the beach!

The night we went (Tuesday) happened to be 'Two Tuesday'- Buy two tapas, get a third free. We took full advantage of that!

The Tapas we enjoyed:
Sweet Potato Quesadilla ~ Roasted sweet potatoes, cream cheese, cinnamon, cumin, and a hint of cayenne pepper, served on a flour tortilla with sweet and spicy pepper jelly    

Savory Stuffed Brie ~ with pepper jelly & toasted walnuts, wrapped in puff pastry & served with warm French bread      
Shrimp & Grits ~ fried grit cake, chorizo, sautéed shrimp & Cajun cream sauce

Pot stickers ~ pork dumplings on a bed of baby greens served with a soy ginger dipping sauce  
Mushroom Croquette ~ wild mushroom, shallot, panko, garlic, buffalo mozzarella, spicy tomato sauce

Steamed Mussels ~ with lime and cilantro 

(Shrimp and Grits; Sweet Potato Quesadilla)

(Pot Stickers)

(Steamed Mussels)

Riverside Steak and Seafood

(Historic Swansboro, North Carolina)
Famous for their Homemade Sweet Potato Muffins.
You can even order them by the basket.... and yes, we do!

{When we got home from vacation, I made steaks one night for dinner. Steaks are not complete without a homemade sweet potato muffin anymore.
This is the recipe I made at home and they were delicious!}

Eat Here Now   (Go ahead, click on the burger!)

(Charlotte, North Carolina)
I enjoyed a Philly Steak Sandwich. And their sweet potato fries are a MUST.

They even have a wall to display the kids artwork. (Don't forget to sign it.)
Brilliant idea for the little artists!

South Carolina

Luna Rosa Gelato

(Greenville, South Carolina)
If you haven't 'gelatoed', you are surely missing out.
Go, even if it's just to use the tiny spoons. (Not to mention the smooth gelato in tons of incredible flavors.)
Gelato is the Italian word for ice cream. It contains one third the amount of butter fat found in premium American ice cream. However, despite its lower fat content, gelato is creamier and more flavorful than regular ice cream because it contains much less air.

Aunt Hilary and Uncle Justin's.....

(Greer, South Carolina)
Where cereal comes with your name on the box!
(Thank you Uncle Justin and Aunt Hilary for making our stay with you extra special!)

Monday, July 23, 2012

Sand In Our Toes- 2012

A close up look into our 2012 beach trip....
(WARNING: It's as if you are opening my vacation photo album)

{Emerald Isle, North Carolina}

At the Beach

Uncle Colby was a great beach fort maker.....

(he even supplied the army guys)

Mr. 'Muskels'....

What's Papa doing?

North Carolina Aquarium

Family Fun


Miniature Golf

Uncle Spence teaching our lefty....

Sooooo sad that we had to leave our blue golf ball at the miniature golf place :(

Driving Range

Family Pictures

Friday, July 20, 2012

Beefy Macaroni

Filling. Easy. Comfort. Delicious.

{All ways to best describe this Beefy Mac! }

What You'll Need:

 8 ounces elbow macaroni, uncooked
1/4 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup butter
1/2 tsp pepper
1 pound ground beef
2 bay leaves
1 can diced tomatoes
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Here's How:

1. Cook macaroni in boiling salted water according to the package directions.

2. In a large saucepan, combine a pinch of salt, onion, garlic, butter, pepper, ground beef, bay leaf, and stewed tomatoes.
Cook slowly for 20 minutes; stir in 1 1/2 cups of cheddar cheese.

3. Spoon half of the cooked, drained macaroni into a 2-quart dish. Top with the cooked meat mixture, then the remaining macaroni and the last bit of cheese.

4. Bake, uncovered, at 350* for 30 minutes.

My version is adapted from this Beef Macaroni Casserole.