Poulsbo and Sogno di Vino

During our time on the Kitsap Peninsula, we found an adorable little town by the name of Poulsbo or “Little Norway.” My Scandinavian roots were intrigued…

I wanted to take my time in each and every one of the quaint little shops featuring antiques, Norwegian nit-knacks, and baked goods.  Instead, we quickly walked the streets and ushered cranky children back into the car.  But I left unsatisfied and insisted we return.

After an enjoyable afternoon roaming the streets, savoring another cup of local coffee, and dreaming of how to redecorate my entire house beach cottage style, it was time for more food.  Two restaurants were recommended: Mor Mor Bistro & Bar for fresh northwest flavor and Sogno di Vino for authentic Italian cuisine.  The Banker had  his fill of local fare and opted for Italian.

I was allowed to dine alfresco.  Our table sat under a 100 year old Magnolia tree wrapped in white lights and I was able to see the Puget Sound, marina and the adorable street all at once.  Add a glass of a local blended white wine to the mix, and I was one happy girl.

The food!  I haven’t talked about the mouth-watering food that was placed upon our firepit adorned table. Of course, every Italian restaurant will serve fresh bread.  Sogno di Vino was no exception.  The flavorful bread had a salted crust and was drizzled with what I’m assuming was infused olive oil.

The Banker ordered the Tuscan Steak with Espresso & roasted almond mascarpone that was served with fingerling potatoes, balsamic braised shallots and asparagus.  My fork may or may not have reached across the table a few times.

In typical form, I made my order slightly more complicated.  I ordered the Strawberries, Beets and Feta salad…hold the beets, add chicken.  It came with spring greens, strawberries, candied pecans, feta and a Raspberry-balsamic vinaigrette.  I practically licked the bowl.  If we hadn’t already eaten all the bread, I would have used it to soak up the left over dressing.

Should you ever find yourself anywhere near this darling town, either on Bainbridge Island or in Seattle looking for a day trip, you need to go.  Preferably without children so you can actually enjoy the quiet streets and shops in peace.

Advertisements

Sunday Salads

I’ve been a dedicated yo-yo dieter for a good part of my life.  Most of the time, its all-for-not with an end with little result and complete frustration.  Sound familiar?

Then I was talking with a friend who told me how she lost all kinds of weight on a high-end, über expensive diet.  [And since this isn’t a paid advertisement, and not at all the point of this blog, I’m not going to name names.]  For perhaps the first time in my life, I was determined to have real results.  So I committed.  Like, seriously committed.  Committed to the tons of lean protein, tons of green veggies and very minimal dairy and starches.  And it worked!  I lost 20 pounds in 3 months.  And all I did was change how I ate.  Of course, all means all my food was changed.

But life goes on… and so do the pounds.  Because I can’t commit to never eat a brownie again.  Or enjoy adult beverages on the back patio on a hot summer night.  So instead, I’ve repeatedly gained and lost at least ten of those pounds over the last two years.  And while I try to recreate my good diet habits, I’ve never been able to find that solid commitment I had the first go around.

The one habit that I haven’t lost is my daily lunch salad.  It’s one of those salads that the ladies in the lunchroom always ogle over because it looks so much better than their frozen meal or left over dinner that turned kinda mushy.  Nobody likes mushy left overs.  But admit it, you would want to eat this too.

 How do you create this beauty?

Start with fresh ingredients.  I use romaine lettuce, baby spinach, celery, green onions, and red peppers. But you add to your hearts content.

Chop away.  I use 1 to 1 ½ heads of romaine and spread it across four salad bowls.  Then I tear some spinach onto and layer away with the rest of my veggies.  That’s right, I make four salads at a time because who has time to do this in the middle of the week?  Not me.  I avoid too much cooking.

Add some meat.  The Banker is amazingly kind and grills up a bunch of chicken for me every Sunday night.  Regardless what [or where] dinner is that night.  He’s pretty awesome like that.  Then I let it cool of and cut up the meat into chunks.

Garnish.  If I’m feeling extra special, I’ll add some fresh cilantro.  How I love me some cilantro.  And if I’m lucky, I have some feta in the house to enjoy.

Eat.  And enjoy every bite.

And since I’ve already dirtied the cutting board, I generally make a few containers of veggies for the kids to munch on for the week.  Celery slices, red pepper slices and cucumber slices.  It’s a good time saver.

And look at that, I do make more than dessert.  Although those are way yummier.

sam