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!

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.

 

A whole grain pasta that leaves you wanting more…what?

Tinkyada  makes gluten-free, wheat free, and non-mushy rice pasta that adds a little health to your meal. Boil water and add your pasta, let cook for 10-12 minutes, and enjoy while hot. Pairs perfectly with tomato sauce, sauteed veggies, or as a lasagna dish.

I tried the ‘Brown Rice Pasta Fettucini’ style and added my own homemade Italian sauce using fresh seasonings like basil, oregano, garlic, salt and pepper. I was reluctant to try a rice pasta since many of them usually come out “mushy” or taste “grainy.” The label clearly stated “Not Mushy” with two bunnies holding the pasta but I wasn’t convinced by it. I have to say the pasta was just right and I would have never guessed it was a whole grain choice. Let’s just say I could eat more than one serving and the taste was impeccable.

There’s millions of pastas and millions of ways to make your pasta different each time. You can view recipes at Tinkyada’s website here.

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http://tinkyada.com/

Unbelievably good Barney Butter!

Barney Butter is an independently owned California company which offers a plethora of almond butters including smooth, crunchy, honey and flax, raw and chia, vanilla and espresso, cocoa and coconut flavors. If you don’t want that extra sweetness and salt, try the two naturally bare flavors: smooth and crunchy. Grab an apple, pick your favorite flavor, and bring on-the-go convenient 90 calorie snack packs.

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Each of the almond butters are Non-GMO, organic, and use fair trade ingredients that come in recyclable packaging. It’s good for you and the environment. And Barney Butter offers plenty of recipes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I’m totally a chocolate addict so my favorite was the cocoa &  coconut flavor. Each flavor has the right amount of sweetness and flavorful goodness that will have you craving more.

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