Friday, July 1, 2016

Vacation Food Tour

Vacation Food Tour

Allen and Sophia at Yosemite Falls, Yosemite, CA
On Monday, we returned home from a 16 day vacation in Northern California visiting our family. Allen and I had a wonderful time and we took a lot of pics at places we ate and food we baked and cooked. We did not get to take pictures of everything we ate, but what follows are some highlights. Before we left Allen's hometown for our trip to Bass Lake, Yosemite and Mono County, I baked Blueberry Muffins to take on the road.

Every time I go to Yosemite, I am amazed by the beauty in front and all around me. We were lucky to have the beauty of the snowcapped Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains around us during our time in Twin Lakes. We spent 6 glorious and relaxing days at a cabin in Twin Lakes Estates (scratch that off my bucket list), and while there we grilled, cooked and baked. I baked a S'mores Pie, Brownie with Reese's Pieces and for Father's Day, Funfetti Cake with Dark Chocolate Frosting. It is great sharing food with the people you love and being surrounded by nature and all its beauty.

Here is Allen with our dearest friend Mike at Anita's Mexican Taqueria in Livermore, CA. We had a nice time with Mike and it was so great to see him during our brief visit together.

Allen and Mike posing with El Yucateco and Tapatio hot sauces
Allen's Mom made us a super yummy BBQ Pulled Pork in her crock pot and Allen shredded the pork. We made sandwiches with it and I made a salad to go with the pork.

BBQ Pulled Pork
We were very happy to spend a day visiting Allen's Aunt Jeanne and her doggie Buddy in Oakland. We toured Oakland and visited Lake Merritt, had lunch at Los Cantaros Restaurant and Taqueria and dinner with her and our cousins Rob and Sheri at Holly's Mandarin. Both lunch and dinner were delish!

Aunt Jeanne, Allen and Buddy the doggie
Allen's Burrito
Sophia's Burrito with no cheese or sour cream
Close-up of Sophia's Burrito
Dinner at Holly's Mandarin was a great time visiting with Rob, Sheri and Aunt Jeanne. We really had a blast together and the food was amazing!

Rob and Allen
Pot Stickers
Lettuce Wraps
Chicken with Mango and Veggies
Pork Fried Rice
Green Beans with Garlic Sauce
My side order of Brown Rice
Beef with Broccoli
Lamb with Mushrooms and Veggies
There's a very cool place called El Pollo Loco we went to in Pleasanton, CA with Allen's Mom and Dad one day for dinner.

Sophia's burrito bowl sans the cheese or sour cream
Allen's butterfly grilled chicken, mac n cheese, coleslaw with salsa and sweet serrano peppers on the side
Allen's close up
The day we got to Bass Lake to stay with our sis Kristen for a few days, we went to the local Farmers Market. Allen and his Dad tried Munch N' Grub Meltdown Beef Jerky and it was real HOT! We ended up buying some jerky too and they gave Allen the Habanero Beef Jerky, which will be reviewed soon!

Munch N' Grub Meltdown Jerky
Dude from Munch N' Grub with Allen holding up Meltdown

I love the area of The Forks in Bass Lake and they make awesome burgers. We sat outside and our view was beautiful Bass Lake.

Sophia's Burger - no Fries
Allen's Cheeseburger on Sourdough Bread with French Fries
We had dinner at South Gate Brewing Company in Oakhurst the day of one of the final games of the Warriors so this place was hopping, literally. The food was great!

Photo bombed by this dude! Sophia, Allen, Mom, Dad
Allen's Pizza
Allen's yummy Clam Chowder Soup
My Fish and "Chips" - Sweet Potato Fries with Root Beer
While we were at the cabin, we went to Bridgeport to get 2 of Nugent's High Sierra Bakery's famous Sheepherders Bread and some Haystacks (Coconut Macaroons). Yum! The bread was so fresh and the Haystacks were crunchy on the outside and soft and full of coconut goodness inside.

Nugent's High Sierra Bakery - Bridgeport, CA
Yummy looking desserts
Allen's Sheepherders Bread Sandwich

On June 19 (Father's Day), we made a rustic cabin dinner at the Twin Lakes Estates grilling for Dad and I baked a Funfetti Cake with Dark Chocolate Frosting. I made a salad and cooked the mushrooms in butter and seasoned with salt and cracked black pepper. The London Broil, Carrots, Squash, and Onions were all grilled.

Funfetti Cake with Dark Chocolate Frosting for Dad
Close-up of Funfetti Cake with Dark Chocolate Frosting
Father's Day Dinner
Grilled London Broil
Grilled Squash
Grilled Onions
Grilled Carrots
On the day we went to Mono Lake, the Hot Creek Fish Hatchery and Hot Creek Hot Springs Geological Site, we ate lunch at Zpizza in Mammoth Lakes. It's not as good as NY Pizza but it did taste great. Mom had a beautiful salad instead.

Zpizza employee putting pizza in oven
Kristen's ooey gooey Pizza
Sophia's Pizza. Yum!
One night at the cabin I baked a S'mores Pie. I used a Graham Cracker crust and baked it, then added chunks of Hershey's Chocolate, and topped with Marshmallows and placed in the oven for a few minutes for the chocolate to melt and until the marshmallows toasted. We devoured this pie and you really need to eat it warm out of the oven. To make the crust from scratch and for the recipe instructions, go to My Cupcake Addiction.

S'mores Pie just out the oven
S'mores Pie almost gone
Allen and I cooked for the family at the cabin Zoodles (Zucchini Noodles) Bolognese and salad. We bought almost all the Zucchini at the local grocery store and Allen's Mom ordered a Spiralizer just before the trip. For dessert, I baked a batch of brownies and Kristen said we should add Reese's Pieces so I added 2 small packages, and folded them into the brownie mixture just before baking it. The Reese's Pieces peanut butter melted beautifully and it was a decadent way to end the meal.

Zoodles cooking, no steamer so just strain in collander and pat dry with paper towels
Bolognese Cooking
Zoodles Bolognese ready to serve
Sophia's Zoodles Bolognese with Salad
Allen's Zoodles Bolognese with Parmesan Cheese
Just baked Brownies with Reese's Pieces
Piece of brownie - so yummy!
On the day we were coming back towards Bass Lake, we stopped at Pizza Factory in Oakhurst, CA for dinner. I ordered a small individual Veggie Pizza and Allen, Kristen and Dad shared a large Cowboy Pizza. Super delish!

Allen being silly with Sophia at Pizza Factory
2 slices of Sophia's Veggie Pizza
Allen, Kristen and Dad's Cowboy Pizza
On our last day with Kristen at Bass Lake, we went to Ducey's on the Lake for Allen's birthday breakfast celebration.

Family pic at Ducey's on the Lake, Bass Lake, CA
Allen's birthday pancake and balloons Kristen got him
Allen's birthday pancake
Sophia's very Veggie Breakfast. Shared with Kristen ;)
Allen and Sophia at Ducey's on the Lake
Our last weekend in Allen's hometown we went with Mom and Dad to eat Burgers at In-N-Out-Burger, a must do when in town!!! I did not get French Fries, but drooled over Allen's. Sigh.

Sophia's Burger
Sophia's Burger, yum!
Allen's Cheeseburger and French Fries
-Sophia and Allen/Two Frys