The Monday after our Mountain Trip we hit another spot on my son’s Food List. This was Hooter’s which recently opened up a Restaurant in our locale. Again, Monti had made sure to be on their mailing list and had Birthday Coupons for Kratae and himself. We indulged in 3 different kinds of Chicken Wings with Bleu Cheese and Ranch Dip. Kratae had a Shrimp Sandwich which she said was delicious and it certainly looked like it was.
On the way home Monday Night, we stopped at the local deli and picked up some Pastrami, Corned Beef, Pickles and Rye Bread. Once we got home, I made my special Potato Salad and Cole Slaw which Quinn had requested.
The next day was David’s Birthday and for it, I made Lasagna with Meat Sauce and Sausage (which Monti had requested) along with a big Salad. For dessert we had Brownies and more Peanut Butter Fudge.
On Wednesday, Monti, Kratae and Quinn took the Bus to the Valley and transferred to another bus (Kratae wanted to see what a bus ride was like here) and then transferred to the Subway which they took to Hollywood. After making some purchases in Hollywood, they then re-boarded the Subway to Union Station. From there they walked to Phillipe’s (a very old famous restaurant in downtown L.A.) and had Lamb Dip Sandwiches and Cole Slaw fbid=10151471226746122&set=a.10150683053886122.425502.294891686121&type=1
Next they took the bus to the Santa Monica Pier where David picked them up and took them to My Father’s Office, a well-known restaurant in West L.A. where they had Hamburgers. Again, they weren’t quite what they remembered. http://www.yelp.com/biz/fathers-office-santa-monica
Thursday night the crew went to In & Out where they had Animal Fries and Ev and I went out for Chinese Food.
On Saturday, the 22nd we had a Family Birthday Party (3 Birthdays in March) for which I spent almost two whole days cooking for. We had Roast Turkey Breast, Tri Tip with my special marinade along with Vegan (for Joel) Pasta Salad, homemade Baked Beans and White Bean Bruschetta. I also made Ciabatta and Croissants. For dessert it was a Giant Chocolate Chip Cookie and a Vanilla and Chocolate Genoise Cake with a Mocha Buttercream frosting. Beverages were water, sodas and bubbly. This event was attended by all the Riemans (except Joel who wasn’t feeling well) and lasted for about 10 hours. Fortunately, I had engaged one of my TA’s who help with my cooking classes to help with this event.
The next day was the last day that my out of the country family were going to be here. They wanted to make one last trip to Jack in the Box (Kratae loves Breakfast Jacks) so we did that. They also purchased Bacon Insider Burgers and Potato Wedges. Somehow, we also managed to fit in the leftover Turkey and Tri Tip from the party the day before.
On Thursday we drove to South Lake Tahoe and had dinner at Taco Bell – another place on Monti and Quinn’s list. I think after this dinner, they have had their fill of Taco Bell and don’t necessarily want to go back again. In the morning we drove to the North Shore and took some photos then drove to San Francisco. On the way we stopped at an Italian Restaurant near the Donner Pass and had Pizza and Salad. There was a cute little train car made into a Jerky Store called ‘Jerky Junction’. I purchased some smoked Bacon and Salmon which we took home in our Thermal Bag. The Smoked Salmon was really good but the Bacon was way too sweet for our tastes, however I am sure that many people will like it given the current Bacon Craze.
On our way we made a slight detour and visited the Jelly Belly Factory in Fairfield. We managed to get there just as the last tour of the day was starting so that Monti, Kratae and Quinn were able to go on the tour. David and I opted out as we had been on it several years before when we visited Napa to attend the Shakespeare Festival that my Granddaughter was performing in. In addition to Jelly Beans they also make several varieties of fudge and Caramel Apples (my favorite). These two items are made on the ground floor in a glass fronted kitchen so that the visitors can view them.
If you want a Jelly Belly Bargain, you can buy ‘Jelly Flops’. These are Jelly Beans that didn’t make the grade and there seems to be a whole lot of them! The last time we were there I bought two cases of the Earth Tone Jelly Flops and we used them at my Gingerbread House at Let’s Get Cookin’ that December. They are just perfect for the decorations on Gingerbread Houses if you like the earthy look instead of the traditional look!
Kratae had never been to San Francisco so we took her to the most Iconic Place which was Fisherman’s Wharf. After a stroll around the Wharf, we ended up for dinner at Pier 39 where I had the Garlic Roasted Crab (had that the year before when we there and really loved it!) and the rest of the gang had Shrimp and Crab Cocktails along with Soup and Salad. We can’t forget the Bread served at Pier 39 – it is from the Boudin Bakery https://www.boudinbakery.com/at-the-wharf and is absolutely the best Sour Dough you will every eat. That is one thing that I just can’t stop eating and there is no extra charge for it as unfortunately some restaurants are now doing. After dinner David took a trip down the most curvy road in SF (I think that was Lombard St.) so that Kratae could have the full experience of San Francisco. I was not particularly happy with that venture, but I wasn’t driving so had no choice in the matter.
Next we drove to Pleasanton and spent the night. Breakfast the next morning was at the Black Bear Diner where I we had Waffles, Eggs Benedict, Pancakes and Coffee and Juice. The meal was quite generous and we all walked away pretty full.
Next stop was Yosemite where David thought he had booked a ‘2 Bedroom Cabin’ which turned out to be one room with two double beds and a roll-a-way. Needless to say, we were pretty crowded. For dinner that night we went to the Hotel in Yosemite for ‘Happy Hour’. We all had Pulled Pork Sandwiches and Salad. David, Monti and Quinn munched on snacks that they had purchased at the General Store in the evening after we went to view the ‘Full Moon’ over Yosemite Valley.
The next day after completing our tour of the Gear Store (not it’s name but what it sold) we drove to Lompoc (stopping at Starbuck’s on the way) to my son Joel’s house where my Daughter-In-Law Nereida made Chicken Enchiladas for dinner. After viewing some of the slides that Joel had culled from his numerous cache, we finally got in the car to drive home. We arrived home around 12:30 AM and needless to say, I was very happy to get there and sleep in my own bed again right next to my husband Ev.
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On Day Six which was a Monday set out on our Road Trip to Mammoth. On the way there it seemed that we stopped at numerous ‘Starbucks’ to get Lattés and for Monti and Kratae to use their ‘Birthday’ Coffees from Starbucks. Starbucks has a new ruling where you cannot use an American issued card in foreign countries so they had to use up the dollars and gifts on their cards while they were here. When we got to Bishop, I had a stop I wanted to make which was at Schatt’s Bakery which makes delicious Sheep Herder’s Bread. Along with the Sheep Herder’s we also bought Cheese Bread and Croissants.
Next stop was Mammoth and our Condo in the Village. We had a two bedroom condo with a kitchen and two baths. The kitchen meant that we could make breakfast there instead of purchasing an expensive breakfast in the restaurants. Dinner that evening was at the ‘Smoke House’ where we all had ‘Pulled Pork’ Sandwiches and soft drinks. Breakfast the next day was Scrambled Eggs and Bacon and ‘Grandma’s Buns’ along with Coffee that the guys had purchased at the market. Grandma’s Buns are Cinnamon Rolls made like Croissants but in a small size. My Mother used to make these for the kids and now I do.
Ski School was on the Agenda that day for Kratae; David went along to help her and Monti was there to record the event on Camera. (Kratae had never been in snow before) After a brief time of observing the action, Quinn and I went back to the Village and visited the different shops and had lunch with the gang at the Side Door Restaurant.
For dinner that evening we did ‘Happy Hour’ at the Westin Hotel. Kratae had the Mini-Taco Trio and I had steamed Mussels. Various other small dishes were eaten by the rest of the crew. The next day was more skiing for David & Kratae and Monti decided to join the ski party. Quinn and I took the bus to town and walked around, did some shopping at the Bass Outlet and then took the bus back to the Village. We ended up for lunch at the Mexican Restaurant where Quinn had Chili Rellenos and I had the Appetizer Trio which consisted of Chicken Tenders, Mini-Corn Fritters and grilled jumbo Shrimp. That night it was dinner at the Side Bar where I had Minestrone (the strangest Minestrone I have ever had) and David and Quinn had Sandwiches. For Dessert I ordered the Crepes with Chocolate and shared them with Quinn and David.
The next morning Q and I went to the local Farmer’s Market. Along with the Vegetables and Fruit that I had purchased we also had some Tamales from the Tamale Vendor that frequents all of our local Farmer’s Markets. Uh Oh! Monti wanted to know why we didn’t let him know. Oh Well! Since he and Kratae elected to stay at his Brother’s house which was about 8 miles from us, we couldn’t go pick them up, go back to the Farmer’s Market, and then return home with the Vegies. Besides which, they wouldn’t have been ready when we went.
After we took the produce home we then went and picked up Monti and Kratae and drove to the Valley. A visit to Walmart (their request) to purchase some items unavailable where they live, to take back home (abroad) with them. After our Walmart visit, we drove to Cupid’s Hot Dogs in Canoga Park. This was one of their childhood and teen/young adult favorite places to get Hot Dogs. Cupids does not have the best Hot Dogs, but they are ‘good’ and there is a certain nostalgia attached to the place. When my parents and brother and I moved to the San Fernando Valley, the original Cupids (in North Hollywood near Lankershim Blvd.) was one of the first places that I noticed and never forgot. Never ate there as a child but did take my kids to the one in Van Nuys on Victory Blvd. and later on I ate a lot of Hot Dogs at Cupids in Northridge, across from Cal State Northridge where I returned to school to complete my degree and teaching credential. I love Cupids; we all love Cupids!
For dinner we returned home where I had Pizza Dough ready and waiting to be dressed and baked. We had a Pizza Prepping Party; Monti’s request was for Anchovies, Pepperoni and Jalapenos and I let him dress his own.
Kratae’s was for Hawaiian Pizza. Normally I put Portuguese Sausage on Hawaiian Pizza but the market we stopped at didn’t have it, so we used the typical Canadian Bacon instead.
My husband Ev wanted his normal Pepperoni Pizza and of course I put lots of Mushrooms, Olives and Bell Peppers on it as well. Quinn and David were happy to eat all the varieties that had been made. I also made a Caesar Salad to go with the Pizza.
* For a Basic Pizza Recipe go to dinner/cheese-pizza/
For Hawaiian Pizza just add some Portuguese Sausage (cooked) or Canadian Bacon Slices, Pineapple Wedges, (fresh or canned) and some Black Olives and Green or Red Bell Peppers.
The next day, Sunday, my son David who is a Real Estate Agent had a unique ‘Open House’ at one of his listings. He had engaged ‘In and Out’ to come and serve Burgers to the guests invited to the ‘Open House’. So that is what we did for lunch. Animal Style Burgers, Chips and Drinks. This was a very successful event and over 300 hundred Burgers were served.
For dinner that evening, I made Linguini with Mushroom Sauce and a Salad along with an Italian Bread. For dessert, I baked the large Chocolate Chip Cookie that Monti had requested and served that along with the Peanut Butter Fudge that Monti had also requested. It seems that Monti put in all the food requests. Quinn was just glad to eat all these items as these were ones that he loved too.
My two sons and daughter-in-law who all live in a foreign country came home to visit for 2 ½ weeks during their school vacation. Aside from visiting with friends and relatives, one of their objectives was to visit some of their favorite food haunts.
This Odyssey started right off the plane with a visit to ‘Tito’s Tacos’ in West L. A. Tacos, enchiladas, burritos and salsa were enjoyed by all, however this time I think they had their fill and said it wasn’t nearly as good as it used to be.
Hooray! Next time we won’t have to visit there. We can just go straight home from the airport and eat the delicious Lox, Barbecued Cod and Smoked Salmon along with Western Bagels, Cream Cheese and sliced tomatoes that was waiting for them. Always their first home meal of choice when returning from abroad.
The next day, Friday, I had a Teen Brownie Class at LGC and Quinn who used to help me at my classes volunteered to TA this evening. Monti and Kratae also came along as the class was not full. Kratae sat and enjoyed the evening and Monti volunteered to work with one of the students who did not have a partner that evening. The Brownies that Monti and his partner made actually turned out to be the best of the lot. It was a caramel/marshmallow creation that everyone loved. Several different types of Brownies and a light supper of Ham and Cheese Sandwiches and Salad was served to everyone.
For some Brownie recipes go to /baked-goods/brownies/