The first day of October was ushered in by beautiful 70 degree weather. I think this means Mother Nature loves October as much as I do.
It’s the best month, hands down. Soon there will be the Micanopy Fall Festival, Halloween parties (who doesn’t love a good costume party?), and lots and lots of pumpkin chocolate chip bread. Loads of it. I’m not holding back this year. Even better, my fondness for decorating the apartment with pumpkins is totally appropriate for the next two months.
I guess March is pretty great, too (month-wise), but it doesn’t have apple cider, mini-pumpkins, and Halloween movie marathons going for it. I’ll wait at least until the second week of October before I break down and watch Hocus Pocus for the 117th time.
October 1st also marked the day that it is now officially okay to start baking (and buying…) Halloween-themed desserts! Fresh Market had some adorably festive cupcakes on display.
On Saturday, my friend Amanda came over and we feasted on two different kinds of pasta, mini-cupcakes, and 6 episodes of Parks and Recreation, also known as The Best Show on Television.
A pretty fantastic start to October, if I do say so! This weekend, I’m heading home for my father’s birthday, and I’m looking forward to that. While this year has been busy in a good way, I am definitely ready for a bit of a breather. And for animal cuddles.
I am pretty steadfast in my love for berries. Raspberries, strawberries, blackberries, etc. I love them all. Over the past two years, I’ve branched out to other fruits, but I usually just buy berries when perusing the produce at Publix. I have come to love plums, apples, peaches, and grapes, too though! But still, pretty standard fruit tastes. I’m pretty much living under a rock when it comes to tropical or recently trendy fruits.
But then I saw this magical speckled fruit called a dinosaur egg pluot at Publix and I had to have it.
A hybrid cross of a plum and an apricot. I’m probably the last person to discover this fruit, but better late than never! It was delicious. It just tasted like a sweeter version of a plum to me but I’m hooked. I’ll be off to Publix for more of them tomorrow!
Today was a lovely Saturday! It was a bit hot, and yet it felt like a perfect fall day even though I spent most of it running errands. I ended up at Fresh Market, Target, Publix, and this adorable French bakery in Gainesville, Uppercrust.
I love Uppercrust. Its one of those places that I often go to just because I haven’t been there a while. They’ve got loads of gourmet pastas, olive oils, various sauces, and of course, wine. Lots and lots of wine. But my favorite part is the bakery aspect, of course! I often buy their rosemary bread and their chocolate bread (though they’ve not been making that lately and I’m desperately in need of a loaf! No, really. I’m not sure how much longer I can go on without a chocolate bread + peanut butter sandwich, and I’m not being at all overly dramatic about this).
Anyway, they sadly were still out of chocolate bread, so instead I decided to get a little pastry for later and moved on to other errands. After an unsuccessful hunt for red lentils, I decided to make this delicious-looking soup that my mother sent me. The recipe can be found here, on the blog How to Be Chic (links straight to recipe).
Its a lentil + tomato soup. Super easy to make, and it was absolutely wonderful! Very filling, and now I’ve got lunch covered for the next few days. My favorite kind of recipe. I added in some garlic and a yellow zucchini I already had, and the flavor complimented the lentils nicely.
Then, after a long day of errands and work, dessert in the form of a raspberry cream rose from Uppercrust and a cup of tea. A lovely end to a busy day!
What’s better than raspberry jam and cream cheese wrapped in flaky pastry dough? Nothing, I tell you.
Tonight I was craving pho like you wouldn’t believe. I haven’t had Vietnamese cuisine in a while, and my stomach was telling me it had been quite long enough, thank you. I found a lovely little place near my apartment: Pho Hanoi, in Gainesville, FL. I didn’t know much about what Gainesville had to offer in terms of Vietnamese food, so I let yelp.com be my guide. My favorite place in Tampa is the Pho Quyen on Hillsborough Ave (anyone in Tampa, check it out!), but unfortunately that’s just too far away now!
Anyway, I got the Pho Ga (pho with chicken instead of beef), and it was wonderful! Here’s a (very green) photo of tonight’s dinner:
I loved that when I picked up my order, the broth was packaged separately from the meat, noodles, sprouts, and basil. Now I can reheat the broth for seconds tomorrow and not worry about my noodles becoming mush in the microwave!
Back in school two weeks and already I’m neglecting my poor, sweet blog. My schedule has been pretty hectic, and I’ve not had the time nor inspiration to write a proper post in a while. Hell, this isn’t even a proper post, I just feel like I need to write a little something before I go straight to the posting of food pictures.
With that said, I made a light dinner tonight: veggies and rice! I sauteed squash, sweet peppers, onion and garlic in olive oil, then plated it over a bed of white rice. Easy, simple, and delicious. And I got to use my new Anthropologie bowl with it (which I totally got on sale–makes me love it even more). A good dinner all around, if I do say so myself.
I was feeling pretty proud of myself for actually cooking a healthy meal instead of giving in to the temptation to go to Steak and Shake for fries and a milk shake. I was thinking, “Good job, Self. Way to buy sensible groceries and cook real dinner like a real adult.”
Then I ruined it all by eating half a box of Frosted Flakes in one sitting.