Category Archives: Forking Thoughts

Random Forking Items of Interest

Fast Food Usually is Forked Up!

 

I very rarely eat fast food because nearly every time I try it there is something wrong with it and it’s always horrible. Over the past 12 months I only tried fast food twice.

Last November I tried some fast food fish from a fast food seafood chain near my house and got this filet of fish.

It was oil logged with a nasty old oil taste. It wasn’t even cheap and was expensive. It was Forked up! I felt really bad because I offered a piece to my elderly dog I had at the time and the food was so bad my poor old dog spit it out.

A new to Arizona Popular Fried Chicken Restaurant opened not too far from me and the independent place I planned to do Take Out at wasn’t serving food that day….So it seemed like a good day to try the Fried Chicken and we got some sort of family pack that included several assorted pieces of fried chicken, extra soft rolls

and two sides. We picked Macaroni and Cheese with Mashed Potatoes.

The Fried Chicken was almost good. The Chicken was fried nicely, was crispy, seemed oil free. The meat was very tender too! But a careless person working there put enough FORKING Salt on the crust to melt snow off a driveway. That chicken was lethal. That much salt can kill a person.  I had to peel off the crust to eat the chicken. I guess I should be happy and not complain because at least the chicken was cooked in fresh oil. YIPPY!

That’s FORKED UP!

The family meal also came with rolls…They were sweet and super soft like I never felt before……I don’t know how they can possibly be this squishy soft……I think they might be made from yoga mats……the rolls are like.. artificial bread…YUK!

The Halloween Orange Colored Macaroni and Cheese was really scary. It doesn’t even taste like cheese………………….It actually taste like eating a tub of margarine with added chemicals. It was sickening.

Lastly the mashed potatoes are also inedible. The potatoes are unusually thick with lots of pepper and another flavor that I can’t identify that isn’t food related. I don’t know what THE FORK it was…….I  was more upset about the potatoes than the salty chicken because the salt was a slip that I understand. Maybe the salt container lid fell off and the person said Oh well…I’m not tossing all that chicken…..but……The mashed potatoes didn’t taste like food! Neither me or my husband could eat the potatoes….my husband tried to eat the potatoes with the enclosed gravy and he still couldn’t stomach them either. Who knows what kind of person made it?…….  ICK!

Fast Food is Usually Forked Up!

NOT WORTH A FORK!

Did I hit these restaurants on off days…….?

Do they make food this bad all the time………??????????

Would they be in business if they do ……..??????????.

Is it possible that some people don’t care what food taste like and will eat anything…….???????????

“You get more food when your not picky…remember the picky ones don’t make it in the jungle.”

“But I only want the food to taste edible”

“It’s Fast Food Human……you forking get what you get and there are 5 lights up there too!”

For me Fast Food from 2 national chains……2 out of 2 times was Forked up!

In my case fast food was Forked up 100% of the time.

The Forking Truth is that your Forking experience may or may not differ.

The Forking Truth

From India Lay’s American Style Cream and Onion Potato Chips

 

Came across Lay’s American Style Cream and Onion Potato Chips from India at the Asiana Market so I thought I’d give them a try. I do note that the bag is impossible to open unlike American Lay’s and you will need shears.

The bag is a buddy pack but I don’t know why?….

There are very few chips in the bag so I hope your buddy isn’t hungry.

according to the bag it’s only one serving.

One of the ingredients is edible vegetable oil……I would expect the vegetable oil to be edible….WTFORK wants to consume INEDIBLE VEGETABLE OIL??????

I open it up and it looks like this.

I start by taking a whiff….It smells sort of like cheese puffs.

The chips are very small and they have ridges and green specs.

The chips taste very naturally oniony and have a slight tangy cream finish and dissolve rapidly in your mouth unlike American Lay’s. The chips sort of remind me of packaged instant mashed potatoes with lots of onion and a tiny smear of sour cream.

I like the flavor and  despite the instant potato thingy overall the chips have a natural flavor.

The American Sour Cream and Onion Potato Chip Bag looks like this.

The American Ingredients do differ and appear to contain much more calories. I note that I didn’t check the serving size so I don’t know if that differs. American Bag is 240 calories per serving and the Lay’s Chips from India are only 150 calories.

Unlike the Indian Lay’s the American Lay’s Chips seem like slices of potato and not formed chips.

If you come across the Indian Lay’s American Style Cream and Onion Potato Chips give them a try and see what you think.

The Forking Truth

Eating Lighter in North – West Phoenix AZ that is Worth a Fork!

 

The Malibu Bowl from Slick’s Garage in Peoria AZ

For the most part it’s going to be 100 degrees F and MORE in the Phoenix Area maybe till November so you might want to eat lighter on these hot days. It’s more challenging to find lighter meals in North – North West Phoenix since this area is less developed with independent restaurants than other areas in metro Phoenix. Here are some of the lighter meals I found that are offered out here. BTW the majority of the meals are priced at $10.00 or less and only a few cost more. Everything was under $20.00.

Slick’s Garage at P83  in Peoria is an independant restaurant that serves casual pub food, big juicy hamburgers, really delicious Tex Mex Style food and the MALIBU BOWL (pictured above). It doesn’t get much healthier than a piece of blackened fish, fresh herbs, tomatoes, black beans, cabbage and red or green chile peppers. The bowl is tasty and won’t weigh you down. The prices are very reasonable too. Your wallet and stomach will thank you.

www.SlicksGaragePeoria.com

A locally owned HEALTY fast food Drive Threw Restaurant with several locations in Metro Phoenix is Salad and Go. They offer around 10 varieties of Salads, Breakfast, Smoothies, Wraps and More. Everything is natural, made in house and is organic…..They don’t have a dining room but you and your dog(s) are welcome on the patio or you can just take you Salad and GO!

www.SaladandGo.com

Banh Mi Bistro Vietnamese Eatery in Phoenix is a Pho Free Vietnamese Eatery that specializes in the Banh Mi Sandwich. Besides the delicious sandwiches (that are filling but not too heavy) are noodle bowls, rice plates and a few salads. One of my favorite things to order here is the Chicken Rice Plate.

Minus the egg roll that was grabbed

It’s always a big juicy boneless chicken thigh that delicious served with a small salad with pickled vegetable and a double portion of rice and an egg roll. Not always but I often make two meals out of this dish.

www.BanhMiBistroAZ.com

The Twisted Italian in Peoria AZ serves up traditional Italian foods and some non-traditional Italian Foods like Pierogi and Italian Rellenos….oh my! They also happen to have European Sea Bass on the menu served with a nice pile of vegetables and a just right amount of light angel hair pasta.

www.EatTwisted.com

Saffron Jak is a Persian Fusion Restaurant in Phoenix. They serve Persian Tacos on their very own fresh baked stone bread, Pizzas and Stone bread and it’s their Rice Bowl (on a plate) that’s a nice light healthy and delicious meal.

Saffron Chicken Rice Bowl

Tri Tip Rice Bowl

Both the Saffron Chicken and the Trio Tip Beef are delicious and very tender. They come with fluffy rice, a side and a small but enough portion of stone bread. You won’t go wrong with either of these plates.

www.SaffronJak.com

Cucina Tagliani is an American/Italian Restaurant in Glendale. They serve up the traditional American Italian favorites most of them are gut busting but “Tags” also offers a pretty darn good Chicken Strawberry and Gorgonzola Salad and Fish Dinners with a two vegetable option. Oh and I just remembered the grilled Chicken Parmesan with the spaghetti squash option instead of pasta. You can pick from several meals that are light at Cucina Tagliani.

Cucina Tagliani Glendale AZ Strawberry and Goat Cheese Salad that includes Chicken

Grilled Salmon with Asparagus and Spaghetti Squash

www.CucinaTagliani.com

Angelina’s Pho and Grill is an Asian Fusion Restaurant in Glendale. They have an always  changing menu but they also offer something incredible and light like the delicious salad pictured below.

The Chicken and Asparagus Salad from Angelina’s Pho & Grill Glendale AZ

As far as I know this beautiful and delicious salad is still offered on the menu…but don’t hold me to it as the menu changes often.

No website ….you just have to show up and dine there.

One of the most delicious salads that I tried comes from Amuse Bouche in Surprise AZ (This is considered the West Valley of Metro Phoenix).

Kale Quinoa Cranberries, Toasted Almonds, Seasonal Fruit, Goat Cheese with added Chicken $16.00 from Amuse Bouche of Surprise AZ

My salad was full of the juiciest sweetest pineapple that really popped against the creamy mild goat cheese. My salad was also made of cranberries, toasted almonds kale and quinoa. A Honey Lime Vinaigrette ties all the flavors together. The salad included a house baked dinner roll with butter. Might be the heaviest of everything on this list but it still seems light and not too heavy.

www.AmuseBouche.biz

We have at least three more restaurants I wanted to add to this list but they were all misses for me lately so they didn’t make the cut.

These were a collection of the tastiest lightest Meals I tried in the North – West Metro Phoenix Area that are Worth a Fork!

Worth a Fork!

I note that your experience may or may not differ and EVERY FORKING THING is subject to change.

The Forking Truth

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Forking Worst Chip I’ve Tried…Crazy Awful

 

I found these Pop Chips potato chips in Crazy Hot Flavor.  I like chips sometimes and I like crazy hot so I thought I might like these chips. These Chips are lower in calories than most chips. low fat and contain fiber. They aren’t fried and are made with healthier oils. I don’t think they actually contain any chili because I didn’t notice any chili listed in the ingredients.

I open the bag and they smell tasty. They smell just like cayenne pepper and maybe something sort of cheesy like cheese curls.

I go to taste one.

OUCH! IT FORKING HURTS!

It’s like someone poured extra tart acidic lemon juice in my mouth.

It’s tart…..It’s tangy and it’s sour.

I do get a lingering cayenne pepper taste and the chips are powdery weird.

Doesn’t seem spicy…just is awful.

I can’t finish one chip.

They are in the trash now because even my husband can’t eat them.

I note I might have purchased a defective bag of Pop Chips because I can’t imagine any company would make a chip that taste like this.

The Forking Truth

Purple Basil doesn’t make Pretty Pesto and Pesto Recipe

 

Pesto make with Purple Basil

Pesto make with Purple Basil

I got a great big bunch of purple basil from the farmer’s market. It was so beautiful and I used some in a delicious salad and I thought with the leftover I’d make a purple pesto. Well I just found out that when you blend purple basil it turns a dark muddy green.

Oh well…

I made a basic pesto with an added roasted red pepper. It taste delicious and you might want to make it with regular green basil instead.

Ingredients for around four servings

2 cups basil leaves – packed

1 roasted red pepper – stem, seeds, skin removed and rough chopped

2 garlic cloves grated

2 oz pine nuts – toasted – I put in a 225 degree F oven till they got some color…10-15 minutes

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/2 cup pecorino cheese – shredded

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt or sea salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Optional up to a half cup water – the pesto will come out very thick, It is good that way but I like it thinner. Most people will just add more olive oil but I prefer to use as little oil as possible.

Directions Just Blend!

Pesto make with Purple Basil

Pesto make with Purple Basil

Latter I made a more traditional style pesto with regular basil leaves.

I didn’t measure but what we have here are a lot of basil leaves, garlic, extra virgin olive oil, pine nuts, parmesan, course sea salt and (don’t tell……..) a little sugar to highlight the sweet basil taste.

 The Forking Truth

The Forking Truth

 

Brunch at Rodeo Grill in Mesa AZ is SMOKING HOT for Restaurant Week

 

Spring Restaurant Week this year (2017) is May 19th-28th. Around 130 restaurants are participating and some are offering some amazing deals to lure you in. One of the most smoking hottest deals is the Brunch Deal offered by the Brazilian Steak House Rodizio Grill in Mesa AZ. For Restaurant Week Brunch they are offing a complimentary cocktail, the full Rodizio experience and an extra complimentary dessert. The restaurant week offer cost $44.00 a couple ($22.00@) and I am guesstimating the value to run around $80.00 so we went for it!

I must say all the help from the gauchos (meat servers) to the hostess, various servers and management were all very friendly, cheerful and helpful.

They started us off with our restaurant week complimentary cocktails of limeade and a passionfruit martini, Brazilian cheese bread and these super yummy cinnamon glazed bananas.

Then we hit the 30 item hot and cold buffet that features some Brazilian side dishes and salads.

SO MUCH STUFF>>>>>It was so hard to decide on what to try.

Not all but some of the stuff I saw was Brazilian Bean Stew, Collards with Bacon, Hot Brazilian Pasta, Whipped Potatoes, Fried Potatoes, Eggs, Chicken Stroganoff, Fruit Salad, Quinoa Salad, Coconut Cole Slaw, Hearts of Palm, Steamed Asparagus, Buffalo Chicken Salad, Some Cheeses, Some sort of Hot Brisket Dish, a condiment station with Chimichurro Sauce, Brazilian tiny tear drop shaped mild peppers and MUCH MORE. I made myself a plate of some salads and vegetables.

Then we have a wooden cubes on the table and we turn it to the green side so the meat gauchos know they can come to the table to serve us.

Top Sirloin….

I think this one was the Hot and Sweet Chicken? Well anyway the hot and Sweet Chicken was my favorite….So Juicy and tasty. All the meats were succulent tasty and juicy. The Hot and Sweet Chicken was just delicious…tang, heat and not too much sweet.

Brazilian Sausage

Other meats that were offered were Tried Tip, Herbed Chicken, Bacon wrapped chicken, Chicken Hearts, Pork Parmesan wrapped in Bacon, Lean Ham and also Glazed Pineapple.

EVERYTHING THEY SERVED US WAS GREAT! All tasty, all juicy and succulent.

We asked for the check and they wouldn’t let us leave without serving us dessert!

This Brunch for Arizona Restaurant Week is Smoking Hot at Rodizio Grill and even at regular price it’s still a great deal that you might not know about.

The Rodizio Grill sure knocked it out of the park and went heads and heels above and beyond  what they had to offer.

www.RodizioGrill.com

Rodizio Grill is CERTAINLY Worth a Fork!

The Forking Truth

If you like to bake make a Scaccia Bread (Lasagna Bread)

 

Spinach and Cheese Scaccia Bread

Around this time last year I saw this interesting recipe in Saveur Magazine for Scaccia Bread that is also known as Lasagna Bread. I just had to make it! I do note that I had to make minor adjustments to the recipe. I don’t know if the adjustments were needed because of the brand of semolina I used (all flours are ground slightly different giving different results) or perhaps due to the hard water of Arizona???? Or maybe due to the extreme dry climate that I think is likely or partially the reason. Well anyway it’s an amazing recipe and you can stuff it however you like. I wrote the ingredients as Saveur posted the recipe but I included my adjustments if you need to use them.

The original Scaccia I made with Saveur’s sauce recipe looked like this. (but I baked it ten minutes longer. (70 minutes instead of 60)

Scaccia also called Lasagna Bread

I made it few times since. Sometimes I use my own spaghetti sauce. Once I tried it with eggplant but the eggplant. The Eggplant filling did taste good but the thin eggplant sort of melted in.

You can fill it with any combination of things. It can be anything you want.

I like to make  double batch and make two different breads. After you make one Scaccia you will want to do the same I bet!

Here is your basic recipe for the dough.

Ingredients for one loaf

Set oven to 450 degrees F.

1/2 cup + 2 Tablespoons warm water (this didn’t work out in my home kitchen and I needed to add another 1/4 cup water) you can do recipe as written and add the 1/4 c extra water if needed at the end)

This was my dough after I added an extra Tablespoon of oil and then I drizzled in water and to me it looked right after a 1/4 cup more water. Then the dough was very smooth.

1/4 teaspoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast

2 cups durum wheat semolina flour

2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (I added a total of three tablespoons because my dough was too dry before I added the extra water so I always add three tablespoons but you might only need two)

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

extra flour for dusting

Saveur also included a sauce recipe for the bread.

1 teaspoon sugar

1 garlic clove – fine chopped

2 cups canned whole tomatoes

salt and pepper to taste

8 oz caciocavallo  cheese (this is the suggested cheese for the filling)

I did a spinach filling to make it-

I used about 3 lbs spinach

1/4 finely shredded sweet onion

a heaping Tablespoon garlic confit

a couple heaping Tablespoons of vegetable  base

1/2 teaspoon Crushed Calabrian Chili and Oil

fresh ground sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste. (I just boiled the spinach in water with the onions briefly….jamming the spinach into the pot and drained it really well for an hour and then added the rest) I used pizza blend cheese but didn’t measure it. I only boil a sort time till the last of the spinach wilts.The spinach comes out amazingly delicious and very flavorful. My husband remarked that this spinach taste like spinach. Usually spinach stuffed things taste like nothing…….

 

Directions

In a large bowl add the warm water, sugar and yeast. Wait till if gets foamy and then add the rest of the ingredients. Mix well for about 8 minutes. Cover with wrap and leave it sit out at room temperature for about two hours or until the dough doubles.

Knead the dough and roll it out in about a 26 x 18 inch rectangle. (I’m using some of my photos from original so you can follow along with folding.

Filling in the middle 3rd.

Fold ends in.

Filling on left half.

Fold over right half.

Bring up bottom.

Then you pierce all over.

Wrap in parchment and place on baking sheet or loaf pan depending on shape you like best.

Bake for an hour at 450 degrees F. or until crusty and sort of brown. (60- 70 minutes)

“OMG! That smells FORKING GOOD! I’m so glad you FORKING adopted me!”

Double batch I just did.

Spinach and Cheese Scaccia Bread

“Hey RUNT, it does smell good but we are suppose to FORKING wait for the food!”

“My bad…….I know I am very young and am only a Pip-Squeek and I don’t make the right decisions sometimes.” “I’ll do what ever you say my big beautiful Aussie Amazon Queen.” “Show me the way……..I need to learn.”

If you like to bake make a Scaccia Bread!

Scaccia also called Lasagna Bread

The Forking Truth

My Forking Thoughts on Limited Edition Strawberry Nut M&M’s

 

I came across these Limited Edition Strawberry Nut M&M’s at Walgreens Drug Store so I picked them up. They came in a share size package that weighs 3.27 oz or two (or more) servings.

The first thing I do is open the pack and take a whiff. It smells delicious! Just like chocolate covered strawberries.

Then I take some M&M’s out. They come in colors of Pink Eraser, Blood and VW Green. They are irregular in assorted shapes and some have a a bonus extra nut in them.

I go to taste one. It’s different than the normal candy shell. It taste flavored like a sweet tart. It’s a slightly tart but sweet fake strawberry flavor. After the shell is melted off I think it’s a regular chocolate covered peanut. When you just eat them you get a slightly different experience. The fake slightly tart strawberry flavor is more subtle but you get hit with more fake aftertaste.

I’m not a fan of the sweet tart taste so I’m not a fan of these M&M’s.

Your Opinion May Differ.

The Forking Truth

What New York Bagels are Like

 

Bagels from Gabby’s Gourmet Bagelatessen of Woodbury NY.

A great Bagel is next to impossible to find in Phoenix AZ. Most people that live here never had a proper bagel. I know this because the majority of bagels sold here don’t have the texture or taste of a New York Bagel. Not all but the majority of bagels you find in Metro Phoenix are just soft rolls shaped like bagels.

It’s really hard to describe but only in New York and the Tri  State Area (New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania) You get these bagels with a special chew and a certain shiny moist coating almost like a glaze but it’s not a glaze and the unique taste. New York Style Bagels have a sort of a soft crust……Look Close….you won’t find this in Phoenix. At least not anywhere that I know of at this time…….

It just gets that way from boiling the dough and then baking the dough.

The inside of the bagel is dense moist and chewy but not wet. There is a slight sweetness that is hard to identify. It taste similar a Philly Pretzel that fills your mouth with a certain type of yum… …………But even less people are familiar with the Genuine Philly Soft Pretzel that you buy off the streets from vendors. If I were to guess the ingredient my guess would be barley sugar but that is an incorrect guess. The secret ingredient to New York Bagels and Philly Soft Pretzels is Malt Syrup. It’s this special taste that is more delicious than just sweet.

I made a dent in the middle of the bagel bottom with my finger and you can see the bagel isn’t like a roll…It’s what a bagel is suppose to be.

Then you can lightly toast it.

Sometimes the bagel is good with butter.

But usually it’s best with $36.00 a lb. Lox and Cream Cheese…..

I ate the actual Lox and New York Bagel before I thought about taking a picture so here is another picture of a Bagel Sandwich from Goldman’s Deli in Scottsdale AZ.

Nova Lox Cream Cheese on a Bagel from Goldman’s Deli Scottsdale AZ

A little Forking Truth about What New York Bagels are like.

The Forking Truth

 

 

 

My Forking Thoughts on New Caramel M&M’s Candy

 

There is a new flavor of M&M’s out there and it’s Caramel.  I’ve found the package in the share size that is 2 or more servings.

I start by opening the package and taking a whiff. It smells just like a typical chocolate candy bar that contains caramel.

I open the bag and I see that the M&M’s are irregular in shape and size. They come in the normal M&M’s colors of Yellow, Orange, Red, Brown, Green and Blue.

I bit into one M&M. It’s very chewy. The M&M has lots of chewy caramel in it.

The Caramel taste similar to the caramel in Twix Candy Bars but I don’t recall that caramel this chewy.

It’s a good taste but a little too chewy for me.

New Caramel M&M’s…not bad! Taste good but too chewy for me but worth a Fork if you like very chewy caramel.

The Forking Truth is that your opinion may differ.

The Forking Truth