Sustain Me

From September 1 through January 1, the food I put in my body was not great. It consisted of a lot of hamburgers and pizzas and bagels and beers. Some of this is due to the fact that I live with a pizza and bagel maestro. Some of it is due to the fact that I like hamburgers and pizza and bagels and beer.

So I abstained from booze in January and dabbled in the Whole30 world. You do you when it comes to eating, but I did learn a lot about how much junk is slipped into the things we eat. I came out this feeling less like a garbage human being and more like a person who has some understanding of the impacts food has on my body.

But really this post is just to share with you three things that are now in my regular routine that are delicious and wholesome.


1. Justin's Almond Butter Squeeze Packets

I've taken to carrying a few of these in my purse at all times. Great in case of hunger/hanger emergencies. Delicious. Filling. Get some. Available at most grocery stores and Amazon.

2. Tessamae's Buffalo Sauce

Great on chicken. Includes ingredients that you can recognize and pronounce. I'd also recommend their Lemon Chesapeake dressing/marinade and BBQ sauce. Available at Whole Foods.

3. Trader Joe's Riced Cauliflower

I've read a lot of blogs that recommend cauliflower rice, which involves the great effort of ricing a cauliflower. Who has time for that? TJ's has made my life easy by bagging this awesome side, which pairs well with curries and stir fry. $1.99/bag at Trader Joe's. If you see some, stock up - they go fast.

These items sustained me this month and hopefully will into the future. A special shout out to La Croix for replacing the bubbles of beer during this dry spell.

Pittsburgh Lately

This is a list of three places that I love that you should go to if you haven't yet:

Bread & Salt Bakery

Mark Bittman's "A Slice of Heaven in Pittsburgh" title sums it up best. The article is on point, so for the full run down, read that, but know that this is really good stuff. I'm sure Pizza Walk With Me will have something to say about it soon, too.

Pizza is by the pound and the pastries are heavenly. As Dan said, "thank god they are the best in the city because their location isn't all that great." True, Pearl Street in Bloomfield is a little off of the beaten path, but do yourself a favor and leave the beaten path.

The Vandal


You guys. This burger. I don't know if I need to go any further than this picture. I'll only say that there are other items on The Vandal's menu and they are all amazing, but hamburgers are where my heart is.

Breakfast sandwiches and iced coffee are another strength of this place, which as Dan and I both said, is just the type of restaurant Lawrenceville needed. BYOB. Order at the counter. Get there before 10:30 a.m. if you want breakfast. GO!

The Livermore

After some meh-ish experiences in the past, this place has fallen back in my good graces. I'm not sure exactly what is different, but I do know that the staff is top-notch and the cocktails are smooth and their small plates are delish. Killer combo. I had to post three pictures of this one.

Keep up the good work, Pittsburgh!

This is About Soup

Homeowners need nourishment and boy have I found some. If you can believe it, I'm talking about soup. The recipe I found involves a crock pot, so proceed with caution.

The recipe is called Crockpot Sweet Potato Basil Soup. I've been omitting the basil mostly because we grew a year's supply of it this summer, but neglected to preserve it for the winter and now I just feel too guilty to touch the stuff.


There are 6 ingredients involved (7 if you use basil):

  • Sweet potatoes
  • Onion
  • Coconut milk
  • Garlic
  • Vegetable broth
  • Salt
  • Pepper

You can read the full recipe over at for the specifics, but know that it involves dropping these 6 (or 7) items into a slow cooker for 3 hours, pureeing the crock pot-ed mixture for a minute or two, and then eating it. Cheers!


Free Shipping Alert

Great day alert! Food52, my favorite food website, is celebrating their birthday by offering free shipping on all orders today only. I love this site not only for its community-driven food and recipe articles, but also for its awesome online store. A few things we have purchased for ourselves or others on Food52 include:

 The Better Than Everything Bagel Seasoning Blend

The Better Than Everything Bagel Seasoning Blend

 Magnetic Bottle Opener

Magnetic Bottle Opener

 Pasta Machine & Drying Rack

Pasta Machine & Drying Rack

 DIY Ginger Beer & Sarsaparilla Kit

DIY Ginger Beer & Sarsaparilla Kit

New to Food52? Use my referral link to get $20 off of your first order. 

Well-stocked kitchens are happy kitchens. Kitchens with homemade bagels in them are even happier. Hint: This is a plug to revive Bruce's Bagels in the near future.