Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Taste Test Tuesday: PB Puffins

I was in Publix in search of a snack to keep stashed in my pantry when I noticed that Puffins were on sale. I've heard good things about these on other blogs so I decided to try them out. Turns out there 100% natural too, sweetened with cane juice. I've become a peanut butter addict lately, so that's the flavor I opted for.

Serving Size: 3/4 cup (30g)
Calories: 110
Fat: 2g
Sodium: 230mg
Carbs: 23g
Fiber: 2g
Sugar: 6g
Protein: 3g
Rating: 5 out of 5

I was pretty tired on a Saturday morning and I wanted to make the easiest breakfast possible. Cereal it is! I skipped the milk part, for some reason I've never been a fan of plain milk to drink or with cereal...but that's another story. Anyway...I just ripped open the bag and munched away. I first thought, wow, the bag is pretty full, that's a good sign I didn't get ripped off. I put a few of the pb nuggets in my mouth and crunched away. They were delicious...perfectly crunchy and not totally filled with just air! They weren't overly sweet and had a really good peanut butter flavor. These are a perfect snack and I'm sure make a good, healthy breakfast with some milk.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Taste Test Tuesday: Kardea Bars

I was lucky enough to get a few samples of the new Kardea Nutrition Bars. I haven't seen them in the stores yet, but you can order them online on their website. This is what Kardea has to say about their Banana Nut Bar...Banana nut is one of life's great comfort food combinations. Kardea brings you this taste sensation in its heart healthy nutritional bar. 1g Plant Sterols, 7g Total Fiber, 7g Protein, Vegan-Friendly, Lower Glycemic Sweetener & Kosher Certified. The label also says "for natural cholesterol management". I guess that's what the plant sterols are for.

Calories: 150
Fat: 5g
Carbs: 21g
Protein: 7g
Fiber: 7g
Sugar: 11g
Sodium: 80 mg
Rating: 4 out of 5 (Banana Walnut & Cranberry Almond)

My favorite flavor out of the pack was Banana Walnut, so I tried that first. The size was about what I expected for a 150-calorie bar (not big), but that was fine. The texture scared me a little, it was very soft. It was mostly smooth with a few chunks of the nuts. But I took a bite and it tasted great. There was a strong flavor of banana and walnuts. The next day I was going to try the Cranberry Almond, so I put it in the fridge for about an hour to firm up. That helped the "floppiness" of the bar a lot. The Cranberry Almond was a hit too. But I'm not a huge fan of Chai or Lemon, so those two I didn't like. But if you are into those flavors you should try it. All of the bars were well flavored with the title ingredients. If I saw these in the store, I would buy a few. It's a great snack bar with a good distribution of nutrients and good flavor.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

LA Fitness Opening Soon!

I know this is non-food related...but I couldn't help myself. I need to workout to counteract all the pigging out I do on the weekends. I'm very excited about the new gym (that statement is really sad, haha)!

I've been a member of LA Fitness for about a year now. I work in Boca Raton, so the one in East Boca that's opening up off Yamato and 95 is perfect for me! It's finally opening on Saturday, October 25th! From what the salespeople have told me, it's going to be the largest LA Fitness in Florida. They'll have a huge cardio area...plus racquetball, basketball and a pool.

10/24 - UPDATE: They will be opening some day between 10/28 - 10/30 due to inspections. But they said everything is set up and ready to go.

10/29 - UPDATE: The plans are to open on Saturday, November 1st. They are going through the last inspections today.

11/3 - UPDATE: They are now open for business!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Taste Test Tuesday: Newman's Marinara

I saw a bottle of Newman's Own Marinara in my cupboards and thought of his recent passing. He was an excellent actor and very charitable. Newman established a policy that all proceeds from the sale of Newman's Own products, after taxes, would be donated to charity. As of early 2006, the franchise has resulted in excess of $200 million in donations. One beneficiary of the donations is the Hole in the Wall Gang Camp in Connecticut, a residential summer camp for seriously ill children. So buy more Newman's Own products! It's for a good cause.

Serving size = 1/2 Cup
Calories: 70
Fat: 2g
Sodium: 510 mg
Fiber: < 1g
Sugar: 11g
Protein: 2g
Rating 3.5 out of 5

I opened the jar and the thickness was good. Not too runny, not too thin. But I thought it would have more texture to it. I picture a marinara to have lots of chunks of tomatoes, but this only had a few. Now on to tasting...

Spaghetti Squash: I added a couple tablespoons to spaghetti squash and some parmesan. It tasted okay. It needed salt and garlic and maybe a little olive oil. The flavor didn't go as well with the spaghetti squash as I had hoped.

Pizza: Another day I made a mini pizza (recipe to come on Sunday). The sauce tasted much better this way, offsetting the saltiness of the cheese. It's a perfect consistency for pizza sauce because it's relatively smooth and not watery.
My favorite bottled sauce of all time is Barilla Green & Black Olive Tomato Sauce...thanks for getting me hooked on it Dad :) But I will keep trying out Newman's Own products to help support some great causes.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Foodbuzz Publisher Community Launches

It’s here, it’s here! Foodbuzz, Inc. is unbelievably excited to announce the official launch of the Foodbuzz Publisher Community, which is comprised of more than 1,000 global food bloggers, our “Featured Publishers.”

At launch, the Foodbuzz community successfully broke into the top ten rankings of internet destinations for food and dining, according to Quantcast, a global internet rating service.

Foodbuzz Publisher Community
In addition, the inaugural 24 Meals, 24 Hours, 24 Blogs event—which aims to showcase 24 Featured Publisher blog posts around the globe in a 24-hour period—kicked off on Sept. 20 and successfully displayed to online food enthusiasts an international, virtual street festival of food and diversity.

“Food bloggers are at the forefront of reality publishing and the dramatic growth of new media has redefined how food enthusiasts access tasty content,” said Ryan Stern, Director of the Foodbuzz Publisher Community. 24 Meals, 24 Hours, 24 Blogs captured the quality and unique local perspective of our food bloggers and shared them with the world. The event illustrates exactly what the future of food publishing is all about—real food, experienced by real people, shared real-time.”

Foodbuzz is proud to be the only online community with content created by food bloggers and rated by foodies, offering over 20,000 pieces of new food and dining content weekly. Members can vote for their favorite pieces of content (recipes, photos, blog posts, videos, restaurant reviews) by “buzzing” them up to the top of the daily menu of submissions.

While the site is logging over 14 million monthly page views and over three million unique monthly visits, the Foodbuzz blogger community is concurrently growing at a rate of 40 percent per month, driven by strong growth in existing partner blogs.

“Our goal is to be the number-one online source of quality food and dining content by promoting the talent, enthusiasm, and knowledge of food bloggers around the globe,” said Ben Dehan, founder and CEO of Foodbuzz, Inc. “Foodbuzz is like the stock of a great soup, allowing bloggers to contribute content and subsequently interact in a rapidly growing, online niche-specific community.”

Keep buzzing,
The Foodbuzz Team

Click Here to view all the fantastic menus from 24,24,24!

Missing in Action

Sorry I've been gone! I am officially back in action. I had a busy streak for a while and the cooking and taking pictures kind of went out the window for a few weeks. But I'm back for Taste Test Tuesday starting tomorrow.