Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Monday Motivation 08/29/2016

"The minute you think of giving up, think of the reason why you held on so long."

~ Unknown

Saturday, August 27, 2016

New Product Review: Simple Mills Pumpkin Muffin Mix

The Simple Mills products have been spotted on more shelves recently at Whole Foods Market and health food stores. I finally decided to try them out and was excited to do so since they are so food allergy friendly. Gluten free, grain free, dairy free, soy free, and paleo friendly, Simple Mills has only eight simple ingredients. I tried the Pumpkin Muffin mix, which contains almond flour, pumpkin, coconut sugar, coconut flour, arrowroot powder, spices, baking soda, and sea salt. I added chopped walnuts. I love pumpkin muffins and they always remind me of fall, but these muffins (made as directed on box) were not as pumpkin-y as I expected. They were dense and baked quickly (less than 30 min). I was disappointed, as I have not had muffins since going grain free earlier this year. With the limited grain free options, I was hoping the mixes would offer a tasty, convenient option for home or travel. This particular one left me wanting more and the price ($7.99) was hard to swallow based on the blandness. My mix made 12 medium size muffins, which is not a lot, but expected with gluten free mixes. 
Try adding pumpkin, cream cheese, or other desired ingredients to enhance flavor. What are your favorite gluten free, paleo mixes?

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Monday Motivation 08/22/2016

"Let today be the day you love yourself enough to no longer just dream of a better life; let it be the day you act upon it."

~ Steve Maraboli

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

EAT: Gamekeeper Restaurant, Boone/Blowing Rock/Grandfather Mountain, NC

A trip to the mountains can bring you back to nature, leaving the hustle and bustle of city life behind. Gamekeeper Restaurant in Boone (convenient to Blowing Rock and Grandfather Mountain, NC) enhances the experience. A plethora of interesting wild game offerings makes Gamekeeper a great dining choice. 
Our server was knowledgable about food allergies and even checked with the chef on several questions to ensure safe options. 

We started the meal off with the Chef's Selection of Meats appetizer. A variety of grilled elk, grilled duck, and wild boar sausage complete with dipping sauces was a great start to the meal. The app was suppose to come with fries, but after inquiry, we found out they were not fried in a dedicated frier. We were able to sub roasted potatoes and onions instead. The grilled elk was by far the best. Lean, it does not have a strong gamey taste at all. 

I ordered the Grilled Peking Duck Breast with Honey Mashed Sweet Potatoes and Wicked Weed Black Angel Sour Cherry Demi. It was delicious. The duck was grilled to a nice medium and the greens and sweet potatoes that accompanied were a perfect compliment. 
My dinner companion ordered the Grilled Bison Flank Steak with Rosemary Roasted Potatoes (minus the Horseradish Sour Cream - contained gluten). He said it was tasty, but preferred the meats on the Chef's Selection of Meats. 

If you love meat and want to try some different types of meat, check out Gamekeeper Restaurant. Their meats are properly raised with no antibiotics and hormones, and local when possible. It is by far the most unique restaurant in the area. Located outside of town near Crestwood Resort and Spa, the atmosphere was fantastic. It felt like you were in a treehouse on a mountain!

Gamekeeper Restaurant
3005 Shulls Mill Rd. 
Boone, NC 28607

Monday, August 15, 2016

Monday Motivation 08/15/2016

"Never give up, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn."

~ Harriet Beecher Stowe

Friday, August 12, 2016

EAT: TopGolf, Chicago, IL

When in Chicago or any major city, you must go to TopGolf. And not just for the fun golf games, but also for the food. I was surprised at how good the food is at TopGolf. In fact, I went back a few days later, just for lunch!

Fear not those with food allergies, TopGolf can accommodate. In fact, they  mark gluten free items on the menu and even have gluten free buns available upon request. My server was knowledgable and even checked with the chef about dedicated fryer. It was a no-go, but I ordered the Sunrise Burger sans bun (no grains for me) and a side of fruit. The burger had bacon, cheese, and egg on top and was a delicious choice pre-golf practice. The fruit was great as well, not that frozen stuff I regularly encounter at restaurants. 

The manager stopped by my table to check on us. A fellow Paleo follower, he said they work hard to accommodate all allergies. In fact, he eats the Sunrise Burger sans bun daily.  

After a tasty lunch or dinner, be sure to check out the golf activities. TopGolf in Chicago (Naperville) has three levels of tee boxes and can handle large groups and parties. Each hitting bay rents by the hour and can accommodate up to six people. If you forget to bring your clubs on your trip, they have some you can borrow. With more than 25 locations around the country and more opening in the next couple of months, TopGolf is a great family friendly activity. Rain or shine, they are open (I hit golf balls during a torrential downpour!).

TopGolf Chicago
3211 Odyssey Ct. 
Naperville, IL 60563

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Monday Motivation 08/08/2016

"Start shaping your own day. 
Start walking your own walk. 
This journey is yours. 
Take charge of it. 
Stop giving other people
the power to shape your life." 

~ Steve Maraboli