Charm your heart – Americana style

Americana diner is a hidden gem found in the heart of East Winsdor, NJ. For the past 25 years, the classic chic retro restaurant has been serving Jersey with freshly prepared breakfast, lunch, dinner, and high quality European inspired desserts. Neon signs above an elongated bar area with sayings like burgers and shakes, freshly baked goods, and cappuccinos gives it a homey vibe. Bite right into a NY style brick oven bread and a palette of butter with flakes of sea salt. No wonder why Thrillist refers to Americana as “The Best Diners In New Jersey.”

Whether you’re craving, breakfast, lunch, dinner, or dessert, each specific menu will fulfill any and every mood. Made without all that nasty stuff, forget the high-fructose corn syrup, artificially sweetened syrup, overly sugary drinks, processed foods and bring on the hand selected veggies, cage-free eggs,  organic teas, Vermont maple syrup, fresh squeezed organic juices and European desserts with a few simple ingredients. Now, go make your heart happy.

Hold the guac. Nope, you will most likely want extra guacamole.  Start off with orange juice inspired mimosas, which pairs perfectly with guac and chips; using tomatoes, cilantro, red onions, olive oil with a hint of apple cider vinegar. Americana diner and bar, hence the name, has a full bar service, you can quench your thirst with beers, wines, seasonal cocktails, or create your own beverage.

Get comfy in your leather booth and order a life altering lunch. Preferably a grilled veggie panini on toasted sour dough bread with zucchini, mushroom, roasted red pepper, and mozzarella (opt out the mozz for a vegan-friendly dish); the fries are light with a crisp or you can easily substitute them for a house salad. Well deserved.

 

The restaurant had a delightful ambiance with a separate trendy lounge area. The service is quick and each waiter is attentive, cleaning the table right away in between meals and replacing utensils for the utmost importance. Americana Diner and Bar serves your stomach between the hours of Mon-Sat 7am – 11pm; Sun 7-10pm. Save room for dessert. 

 

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Jersey shore pizza redefined

Talula’s has a collection of wooden benches, vintage inspired canisters filled with straws, a bar with blueberry beer and queen B cocktails, and not to mention handcrafted sandwiches on sourdough bread and focaccia bread (house baked). Of course, my favorite item was the margie pie with vegan cashew cheese and you would have never guessed it was dairy-free cheese. The thick consistency and creaminess pairs perfectly with the fresh basil.

You can decide whether to sit inside or outside this retro charm, but I sat on a cozy bench where I could see my pie baking to perfection. The laid back vibe and quick service makes it

 

 

the top pick for foodie lovers.

  • Margie pie with vegan cashew cheese
  • Pesto and pickle on sourdough bread hold the cheese & mayo; made with basil pumpkin seed pesto, bread and butter pickles, lettuce

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I cannot stop dreaming about how soft the bread was, the flavor combinations, and the incredible drinks which had just enough sweetness. I totally got to feel like Beyonce for a second with my Queen B cocktail with rooibos lemon rose vodka, honey syrup, and a spot of lemon juice.

I give Talula’s 4/4 stars!

Tri-color quinoa brings all the flavor!

When I get a craving for Mexican food, I try to think of grains over carbs. Trust me, I am a carb feign; I would eat them all day and night if I could. Nature’s Earthly Choice Organic Quinoa, 32 Ounce“>Quinoa gives you the carb satisfaction factor and the Goya Small Red Beans 15.5 oz“>red kidney beans, onions, and peppers with salsa adds to the flavor factor. Bringin’ back all the flavor with black, white, and red tri-color quinoa blend.

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It’s an easy recipe that only has a few essential ingredients. You’ll be getting your grains and vitamins. Did you know onions are high in Vitamin C, B6, Calcium, and Fiber? Get out of here. Keep slicing. Plus, the garlic will keep those unwanted strangers away and boost your immune system while it’s at it.

Ingredients:

Method:

Saute onions, pepper, and garlic in Palermo First Cold Pressed Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 16 oz.“>extra virgin olive oil  until translucent or fork tender. HINT: You can boil the quinoa while you’re waiting for your veggies to saute.  Add 2 cups of water for 1 cup of quinoa. Cook for approximately 15 minutes. Add cooked quinoa (they should have spiraled out) with the red kidney beans and mix thoroughly. I also added a little salsa on top to bring out the flavor.  See below on my insta!

DIY Blueberry Facial Wash

I noticed that my skin seems to be breaking out more than usual  (post-period effects); hence I decided to make my own Blueberry Facial Wash. Blueberries are loaded with antioxidants. They help with blotchy skin and acne problems.  Who knew almond milk is filled with nutrients including vitamin E to help maintain a well balanced look. Hold off on those Vitamin E creams, almond milk has a high level of it. You can have restored skin and reverse the effects of sun damage in just seconds with this DIY facial. Can’t forget the cinnamon! It fights acne, blemishes, and leaves your skin with a glowing youthful complexion. Rice is great for those summer days when you get sunburn. It helps to cool your skin off for flawless skin.

All of the ingredients are beneficial for your skin. Hold off on buying those expensive creams, and make a simple recipe using only 4 ingredients. If you have any extra facial wash, refrigerate it. I recommend using it within 2 days for the best skin results.

What you’ll need:

Method:

Pour ingredients into a nutibullet and blend until desired consistency.

Get me more edamame pasta, plz!

Who knew that edamame can be made into pasta and actually taste good? Seapoint Farms makes Variety Bundle: Seapoint Farms Edamame, Spaghetti and Fettuccine, 15 oz total, which is loaded with 24 grams of plant based protein per serving. It’s perfect for vegans and vegetarians that want to still feel sufficed by their carb intake. All you have to do is boil 6-8 cups of water, add some salt, and mix until tender.

I’m such a foodie as you can tell. The spaghetti kept me full for hours, pleasantly surprising for me, and it had the same texture as a whole wheat pasta. You can tell you’re eating healthier immediately with a grainy thicker texture. I kept it simple and added marina sauce for flavor. High in protein and low in carbs, plus you can jazz it up by adding diced tomatoes, broccoli rabe, spinach, seasonings, or any other veggies. Go green, stay lean, and eat edamame. Yes PLZ!

Calling all caffeine addicts..

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Do you love your morning smoothies? I know that I do but now you can love them a little bit more by adding Rebel Kitchen Coconut Milk Drink, Coffee, 11 Fluid Ounce  into your vegan friendly creation. You get your caffeine intake with fair trade coffee beans without any refined sugar, preservatives, or additives. With only four ingredients, organic coconut milk, organic date nectar, organic coffee, and spring water, you can start your day the right way!

It not only tastes delicious but gives you enough energy to start your day. Don’t worry, it doesn’t have that bitter coffee taste. I was highly impressed by how well it paired with the banana and nut butter. You get your potassium, essential vitamins, plant based protein, and a slightly frozen  breakfast mix.

Rebel Kitchen’s Breakfast Smoothie

It’s totally soy free, gluten free, and dairy free and an easy way to make a healthy breakfast.

Ingredients:

What to do:

Pour all your ingredients into the blender. I use my Magic Bullet NutriBullet 12-Piece High-Speed Blender/Mixer System“>nutribullet to make a delicious smoothie! Enjoy 🙂

 

 

 

 

Seapoint Farms brings healthy snackin’ to you!

Seapoint Farms makes edamame, seaweed crisps, and pasta loaded with 24 grams of protein.  All of their products are non-GMO verified and totally vegan friendly. It’s perfect for an afternoon pick-me-up!

I always try to grab a healthy light snack that can conveniently fit into my bag. Grab and go is my motto. I love their seaweed crisps that have a bit of a crunch and flavoring to balance out the seaweed taste. Try the Seapoint Farms Seaweed Crisps, Pumpkin Sesame, 1.2 Ounce (Pack of 12)“>almond sesame and pumpkin sesame; my two personal favorites!

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Try all of their healthy products! Don’t worry Christa Alexis will be back with recipe ideas! 🙂

Summer time is for smoothies

Summer is a season where people head down the shore, plan weekend getaways, and get their tan on. It’s a time where you grab yourself a beverage, preferably a smoothie drink loaded with vitamins and minerals to keep you hydrated. My favorite smoothies include strawberries, bananas, blueberries, and spinach. I try to go with whatever my body is craving.

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What you’ll need:

  • Blueberries
  • Strawberries
  • Spinach
  • Banana
  • Unsweetened Almond Milk
  • Protein powder, cinnamon, tumeric (optional)

Directions:

Blend it until smooth and ENJOY!

 

Zucchini Noodles with Broccoli Rabe and Diced Tomatoes

This is a great summer dish and helps you to cut back on the carbs using zucchini noodles. I added broccoli rabe with diced tomatoes for extra flavor. Don’t forget the seasonings like fresh basil and oregano. Dig right in for a high multi-vitamin packed green dish.

Many people may assume that broccoli rabe is difficult to make. It’s a dark green leafy vegetable and a significant staple in the Italian American dishes. Did you know it’s packed with protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin B, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Calcium, and Magnesium?

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First, I put the broccoli rabe in a pot and then boil it until tender. Meanwhile, set aside a non-stick pan lined with olive oil, crushed pepper, and sliced garlic. You can cook until the garlic is slightly brown. Once broccoli rabe is boiled, place in the pan and continue sauteing for about 5 minutes.

You can also dice tomatoes and throw it in your dish for more flavoring. Add a little bit of sauce too. I usually add salt, pepper, and other Italian seasonings to spice it up. You can either boil or fry the noodles, but I prefer to boil them slightly before mixing them in with the broccoli rabe and tomatoes.

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What you’ll need:

  • Broccoli Rabe (1 head)
  • Tomatoes (1 or 2)
  • Zucchini Noodles (Homemade or Store Bought)
  • Olive Oil
  • Seasonings (Oregano, Basil, Salt, Pepper, Crushed Red Pepper)
  • Sauce (Optional)

Get ready for a wholesome meal. You get your greens, your vitamins, and a light meal. Induldge in a guilty-free meal and load up on the “zucch noodles.”

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Southern style cooking

Southern style cooking redefined with more vegetables, beans, and cheese – vegan friendly option of course. I love how southerners invest their time in homemade authentic prepared foods. A few of my favorite vegetarian items are collard greens, beans, cornbread, and of course you can’t forget the biscuits.

I decided to saute broccoli with olive oil and garlic; then add baked beans to the dish with a sprinkle of veggie cheese on top. It’s a light lean meal with just the right amount of protein. For more creations, stay tuned Christa Alexis will be back.