Before I get into what I did and didn’t do this weekend, you know that I gotta shout out to my racing friends from this weekend: HUGE congratulations to Brea, Erica (SLO Half Marathons), Tina, my Team Challenge girl Angel (London Marathon), Sara, Cara (Rock N’Roll Nashville Half Marathon), Marcia (her first triathlon!), Lauren aka Mama Salt (NJ Marathon), Danielle from Pittsburgh (Big Sur Marathon), Jill (St. Luke’s Half Marathon), Smitha and Serena and Serena’s Crusaders (San Diego Epilepsy Foundation 5k) and oh, I know I’m forgetting some, and I’m so sorry!!! I know that some of your had amazing races, some had to really fight, but you should all be so proud of yourselves 😀
My weekend was far less exciting, but it was rather tasty.
Another impromptu date night on Friday lead to the consumption of some delicious Grigliati Mista, again accompanied by a great Montepulciano d’Abruzzo at Volare.
Saturday? Um…. let’s just say that apparently I needed to catch up on sleep! I went to sleep about 9:30 Friday, woke up at 7:30ish on Saturday (HELLA late for me), woke up, ate breakfast…. and went back to sleep on the couch about 8:30 and woke up at 10:30. And after lunch, I even dozed a little bit on the couch! I know part of it is my new lifting, rather than running, schedule, the fact that I wake up early during the week, and also just the content relaxation of knowing you have a lazy Saturday…. but DAMN.
I did eat an entire bag of my favorite Organic Matter’s Vanilla Sea Salt Caramel Popcorn (Organic, Gluten Free, and my favorite caramel corn on the market. Small batch, small business, love it). I can’t be trusted around it. OOOOOH and it is now on Amazon! (affiliate link)
My big accomplishment for the day? This:
That would be Piri Piri Chicken with smashed coconut plantains and stewed collards, courtesy of Blue Apron and Erin (thanks my love). I modified it slightly for me, but Alex had the full shebang and loved it! I’ll do a full review of our week of Blue Apron meals once we’ve had the others!
Sunday’s main event was meeting a girlfriend to go to the Randolph Street Market. For those who don’t know, the Randolph Street Market is one of the largest indoor/outdoor markets in the country (think Brooklyn Flea, if you are familiar, but even bigger!), and is a huge part of the street festival scene as well. It operates year round from Plumber’s Hall, and in May expands to also occupy the parking lot outside. There are major events throughout the year, and I can’t wait to go to another!
Within the buidling, there are 3 levels of antique, vintage, and handmade/local finds, but you know what I ended up being really interested in: the food vendors! Everyone was lovely, but my favorites were Harvest Circle Workshop, Secret Creek Pesto, Black Angel Saucery, TongueSpank Spice Company, and Chocolate Twist. I am already talking with a few of the companies about reviews and giveaways for you all, so I am going to do a bit of an overview here, but stay tuned!
The first two, I am sorry to say, are for locals only, but they are available via Artizone (use my code SUZLYFE HAS DISCOUNTS for 10% off!)
Harvest Circle Workshop crafts their signature snack balls from all natural, gluten free, low glycemic index, superfood ingredients, with some of the flavors being vegan as well! Each is small-batch made with their own freshly ground nut butters, fruit compotes, and natural protein powders to create a product that is high in fiber and antioxidants and SO freaking tasty. Signature flavors include dark chocolate coconut almond, dark chocolate peanut, PB & J, Peanut Butter Banana, Fig Spice, Java Hazelnut, and lemon coconut (seasonal). They also have granola! My favorite? The vegan Carrot Spice–so delicious, with just the right amount of spice and chew to it. Unfortunately, Harvest Circle Snack Balls are only local at this time due to the lack of preservatives and the nature of the ingredients, but they are available through Artizone! Use Code SUZLYFE HAS DISCOUNTS for 10% off!
Secret Creek Pesto was another great find. Small batch, locally made, and in a great variety of flavors, some with parmesan, etc, and others that are vegan. There are a variety of nuts used, as well, so that those with various allergies can find flavors that work! My favorite? The South African Peppadew (vegan), which had just a titch of sweet to it reminiscent of a sweeter sauerkraut slaw. I wanted to sit down with a bowl of that and all the veggies or slather it on a sandwich, stat. What I liked about these pestos was that, in addition to being incredibly flavorful, they are also freezeable and re-freezeable, which is great when you have lots of flavors or only one person who wants a certain type. Secret Creek ships within Illinois, so another Artizone purchase for the locals. Use Code SUZLYFE HAS DISCOUNTS for 10% off!
OK NOW BEYOND LOCAL ONLY. The following companies ship nationally, and I’m in talks with each to do reviews and giveaways for you silly people!
I am so freaking excited about this company: Black Angel Saucery. Consider me officially obsessed. You all know that I like spice but I am all about flavor, that I like local, small businesses, and that I am allllll over a company with a sense of humor. Well, Black Angel Saucery has all of that. Expect a full review of the company flavors to come, but I’ll start with this: BACON FLAVORED HOT SAUCE. It. is. insanity. And for those that like spice but not heat? Don’t worry, I came home with a bottle of sauce in order to create a recipe just for you 😀 Stay tuned for a review, and, I hope, a giveaway!
Next company that I am now flipping out over? Tonguespank Spice Company. Seriously, I want to kiss whoever came up with that name. Tonguespank is working to save the world from boring food, and I can tell you that they are successful in doing just that! Let’s talk about bourbon and rum flavored finishing spices, smoked bacon/truffle/rosemary sea salts (and so many more) and their brand new sugars, which come in flavors like espresso, cocoa, sweet onion (amazing! Like a caramelized vidalia!), habanero (not overpowering at all), and strawberry. Like with Black Angel, I am looking forward to doing a review and (I hope) a giveaway, so for now, all I’m going to say is OH MY GOD.
After all of these savory companies that I’m going nuts about, did you think I didn’t also get my sweets on? The stand out, for me, was Chocolate Twist. I love Kate (the founder and creator) and her philosophy of making good food, make it tasty and fun, and make it accessible. And her creations? Are just that. Chocolates mixed with bourbon, pretzels, spices, and even CHEEZ-ITS!!! And Beer caramels, and the Burnt Toast Caramel…. omg. Melt in your mouth. A little buttery, sweet but with a balance of slight burnt caramel bitterness… but that texture. Another future review opportunity, I hope!
I can’t wait to go back to Randolph Street Market the rest of this summer!
The rest of my day was dedicated to going to target, hobbling home (more on that tomorrow), and cleaning up around the house. Yeah… notice I didn’t mention running. Again, a discussion for tomorrow.
WHO IS EXCITED ABOUT SUMMER FESTIVAL SEASON?????? I am, obviously.
Who slept/ran/cleaned/whatevered an absurd amount this weekend?
Which of these companies and/or products are you most pumped about?