Chicken

Latin Deli

The next visit on the Bite Tonight’s Dallas trip was to Latin Deli.

Located on Abrams Rd, Latin Deli is hidden away in a strip mall and if you blink, you might miss it. The menu includes delicious, fresh, and homemade sandwiches, salads, pastries, smoothies and coffee, and crepes. The crepes come either sweet or savory and the sandwiches feature authentic Latin cooking. We came here for brunch. See how they ranked.

Atmosphere: 4 out of 5 bites

Price: 3.5 out of 5 bites

Quality/Taste: 4 out of 5 bites

Service: 4 out of 5 bites

Wow Factor: 4 out of 5 bites

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My pick:

Passion Fruit Smoothie: Refreshing, cool, and summer-y. Perfect for brunch.

passion fruit smoothie

Pineapple Pork & Egg Sandwich: Homemade pork, grilled ham, grilled pineapple, cheese, Latin mayo on Ciabatta bread. I added an egg. The sweet and salty combo was really delicious and the egg was a nice compliment. The small Ciabatta bread acted as an English muffin which was soft on the inside and slightly toasted on the outside. The homemade potatoes were the star of the meal! There was this slightly sweet, salty, with just a hint of heat seasoning on the fries that I could not figure out, but it was scrumptious. The fries were soft, but not soggy. The Latin mayo for dipping was insane!

pineapple pork

Ma’s pick:

Chicken Sandwich: Marinated chicken, tomato,  jalapenos, onions, and Latin mayo . Juicy and tender chicken with a tasty spice blend. It wasn’t too hot, but was just enough for you to taste it.

chicken latin sandwich

Jay’s pick:

Tamarind Smoothie: Slightly tart, but sweet and fruity.

tamarindo smoothie

Lomo Saltado: Sautéed beef Peruvian style, Salsa Criolla (compiled of onions, chile peppers, lime, and cilantro), Aji Marillo (yellow chile pepper), egg on Ciabatta bread. The beef was so tender and melted in your mouth. The creaminess of the egg with the salty beef and spicy salsa really was a great start to our day. The large Ciabatta bread was chewy and just delicious. It soaked up just enough of the juice from the beef to act as a sauce and not make it soggy. Again, we could not put down those fries! They are addicting.

beef latin sandwich

Jalapeno and Cheddar Muffin: This took cornbread to a whole new level!  Nice balance of cheesy and spicy, but the muffin itself was killer. It tasted like a cornbread muffin married a cupcake because it had a slight sweetness to it. It was unlike any cornbread muffin I’ve ever had. It was moist, sticky, and delicious.

cheddar and jalapeno muffin

Latin Deli blew me away. It has a small dining room with a handful of tables on the patio as well, but that didn’t stop this deli from serving up big flavors. The quality of the food was better than most large restaurants. They are really showcasing their passion for good Latin food while offering reasonable prices. I also enjoyed that covering the walls were tons of inspirational sayings and quotes. It really was a colorful and positive environment. The staff was friendly and the service was great. This will definitely be one place I return to the next time I visit Dallas.
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Food Tasting @ Olive Garden

Josh and I were lucky enough to be invited to an exclusive food tasting @ Olive Garden in Ann Arbor, MI last week. Olive Garden’s culinary geniuses were looking for feedback on their latest and most significant menu evolution in OG history. Olive Garden’s new menu is designed to appeal to the evolving palettes and preferences of casual dining guests, while providing more customizable options. See how they ranked!

Atmosphere: 4 out of bites

Price: 3.5 out 5 bites

Quality/Taste: 4.5 out of 5 bites

Service: 4 out of 5 bites

Wow Factor: 4 out of 5 bites

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We started off with a drink…

Italian Margarita: Sauza Gold Tequila, triple sec and imported Italian amaretto. Light, refreshing, and dangerous because you cannot taste the alcohol. The sweetness from the amaretto balances the sourness from the margarita. Highly recommended!

Italian Margherita

Out of a 10 course food tasting, Josh and I decided to share our favorites.

Crispy Risotto Bites: A bite-sized blend of Italian cheeses and rice, lightly fried and served with marinara sauce. Perfectly crispy and not greasy. The marinara was flavorful and the perfect sidekick. Great for sharing!

Risotto Bites

Artichoke Fritta: Artichoke hearts lightly battered and fried, topped with Italian cheeses, Served with citrus aioli dipping sauce. Even though the artichoke hearts were fried, this appetizer was very light. The artichoke has a slightly lemony and sour element that brightened up the texture. The citrus aioli sauce was what made this dish: delectable!

Articoke Fritta

Salmon Bruschetta: Grilled filet topped with fresh tomatoes and basil pesto. Served on a seafood risotto with sauteed shrimp. Although we’re not huge seafood fans (Josh even less than I), this salmon was amazing. Cooked and seasoned perfectly and extremely fresh! The creamy and silky risotto was the perfect pairing.

Salmon bruschetta with shrimp risotto

Citrus Chicken Sorrento: (Lighter Italian Fare, under 575 calories). Tender, grilled chicken breasts in a citrus honey glaze, inspired by the city of Sorrento, famous for it’s lemon groves. Served with lightly seasoned broccoli, artichokes and roasted vegetables. The sweet citrus and lemon flavor was light, yet satisfying. The chicken was tender, juicy, and succulent.

Citrus Chicken Sorrento

Braised Beef and Tortelloni: Tender slices of slow-braised beef, portobello mushrooms, and asiago-filled tortelloni tossed in a basil-marsala sauce. OMG! Hands down, the best thing we’ve ever eaten! The beef was so tender and absorbed so much of that slightly sweet basil-marsala sauce. The tortelloni was perfectly cooked, and filled with buttery asiago cheese that just melted in your mouth. Although this dish was slightly heavy, it was comforting, exquisite and so worth it!

Braised Beef Tortelloni

Apple Tuscan Bread Pudding: (Seasonal dessert)-Warm, rustic Italian bread pudding baked with York Imperial applies, then topped with caramel and a rich vanilla cream. Now, I would normally gravitate towards a chocolate dessert or cheesecake for an after dinner delight, but this bread pudding is good! A nice crusty top with a moist, soft center. This is the perfect dessert to warm you up right before you venture out into the Michigan cold. The vanilla cream is the perfect finishing touch and really compliments the bread pudding well.

Tuscan Apple Bread Pudding

Some of the other menu features include Spicy Three Meat Sauce part of Cucina Mia (customize your pasta), Roasted Tomato Caprese Salad Topper, Mediterranean Flatbread, Spicy Calabrian Wings, and Pappardella Pescatore seafood entree.

The OG staff and organizers of the food tasting were really great and took the time to explain each dish and interact with the food tasters. Service was good as always and the staff was very accommodating. A big thank you goes out to the the staff at Olive Garden and Costa Communications Group! We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again, if you want good Italian that never disappoints, go to Olive Garden. This new menu is the best we’ve had at OG so stop wasting your time with mediocre. Get to Olive Garden now and experience decadence.

Olive Garden on Urbanspoon

Congrats Alex and Rebecca!

Today on the Bite Tonight: Alex and Rebecca’s wedding!

Last night, Josh and I were so lucky to be a part of Alex and Rebecca’s special day. The event was held @ Greenfield Village in Dearborn, MI and was lovely. After the beautiful ceremony, we headed over for a cocktail hour complete with delicious horderves and a carousel ride. We gathered at the Eagle Tavern  next for a fun reception.

Dinner:  Steak with sauteed mushrooms, breaded chicken breast, stuffed tomato, mashed potatoes, green beans, and carrots. By far, the best wedding food I’ve ever had. The chicken was crispy on the outside and moist on the inside. The mashed potatoes were creamy and the veggies were fresh and crunchy. The steak was a little too undercooked for me (red center), but what I did eat was tender and flavorful.

eagle tavern

Dessert: Ice Cream Station! Vanilla ice cream topped with hot caramel, crushed Oreos, and M & M’s. Sweet and nostalgic! Josh was a happy boy.

ice cream bar

Eagle Tavern was dimly lit, giving off a casual, yet elegant ambiance. Despite the rain, the night was filled with dancing, laughs, cries, and good company. It was a very good time and our only regret was having to leave. Congratulations, Alex and Rebecca! I hope your day was everything you imagined.

Eagle Tavern on Urbanspoon

Panchos Mexican Restaurant

Today on the Bite Tonight: Panchos

Located on Dix Rd. in Lincoln Park, MI, Panchos is serving up some pretty killer Mexican food. When it comes to Mexican, I know what I like and it’s hard to find that Downriver. Every restaurant has their own style and spin on their cuisine, but my family has come to enjoy Panchos. See how they ranked.

Atmosphere: 3.5 out of 5 bites

Price: 3.5 out of 5 bites

Quality/Taste: 4 out of 5 bites

Service: 3 out of 5 bites

Wow Factor: 2 out of 5 bites

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Taco Dinner:  2 beef and 1 chicken with side of rice and beans. Ma and I love Panchos because they will fry the flour tortillas for us making them crispy. The meat has good flavor, Muenster cheese is my favorite, and the rice and beans are delicious and authentic.

taco dinner

Irony got the best of us because Ma suggested going to Panchos even though they were a few miles further from our house than Taco Especial. Ma wanted to go there because on a Saturday night, she never has to wait and their prices are more reasonable than other local Mexican restaurants. We ended up having to wait about 20 min for a walk-in carry out order. Which isn’t too bad, and for the wait they even threw in an extra taco. Unfortunately, they gave us all beef tacos instead of one chicken taco. I think this was the first time our order was ever compromised and can be forgiven because they were so busy and we scored an extra taco out of it. If you haven’t experienced Panchos, check em out!
Pancho's Mexican on Urbanspoon

Stuffed Chicken Breast

Sunday, I made Josh dinner and tried out my Stuffed Chicken Breast. I love this recipe because you can stuff the bird with whatever you like. On the menu this time was spinach, green and white onions, garlic, and provolone cheese.

Ingredients:

I lb of boneless, skinless chicken breast

1 green onion

1 small white onion

6 oz. of fresh spinach

3 tablespoons chopped garlic

2-3 slices of Provolone cheese

Olive oil

Salt & pepper

Prep:

Sautee spinach, onions, and garlic until soft and set aside. Clean off the unwanted fat from the chicken breast and slice in half as if to butterfly, only cutting all the way through. Work with one half at a time, seasoning with salt & pepper and any poultry seasoning you have on hand. Rub with olive oil and lay half of a cheese slice on chicken breast. Spread a spoonful of spinach mixture on top of cheese. Grab one end of the chicken breast and roll, tuck, and secure with skewers (toothpicks are not strong enough). Do this with the rest of the chicken breasts and lay in a baking dish with even spacing between each one.

Bake:

Bake for 40 min on 350 degrees until juices in the chicken run clear. I cut a slice in the largest breast to make sure there is no pink center. You  can bake for longer to brown the chicken, but be careful not to dry it out.

Tip: Line the baking pain with foil for easy clean up

I served with sauteed carrots, spinach, pasta, and homemade Alfredo sauce. The cheese gets all browned and bubbly and the onions and spinach added a mild, but fresh flavor. The chicken was moist and juicy.  I’ve tried this recipe with peppers and also with flank steak, but this way is my favorite. Josh loved it also 🙂

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