Taking Back My Twenties

Grub, Origin, & Football

Posted on Feb 3, 2014 | 8 comments

Lots and lots of good eats and fun with friends with weekend! Friday was warm and beautiful outside, so I met my friend Liz and her new pug (!) for a drink on the patio at Common Table just as the sun was setting. I love dusk!

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I had a hearty brown ale. Matt met up with us, and after saying goodbye to Liz, we continued on to dinner at new burger bar. Grub is in a bit of a random location in the bottom of an office building, but it’s cheap and the menu looked great, so I wanted to give it a try.

I can highly recommend the burgers and the service, although I would skip the four dollar rita next time – tasted like mellow yellow with no trace of tequila!

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Matt and I shared the Texas luau burger, which was topped with braised pulled pork, a grilled pineapple slice, jalapeños, and teriyaki & BBQ sauce, as well as the Ahi tuna burger with sprouts, arugula, pickled ginger, and wasabi-teriyaki dressing. Both were fantastic!
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Saturday involved my usual bootcamp class, laundry, watching the [sad] Duke game with Duke friends, and a wonderful date at Origin Kitchen. I had heard great things about the coffee shop/healthy cafe turned restaurant and was excited to try it. I ordered an interesting Zinfandel, but there was a great cocktail and beer list as well. We started off with the wild caught salmon belly bloody mary ceviche! This was awesome, especially since I finally like bloody marys.
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The menu was great and we had a hard time deciding, so we ordered the mussels in white wine as well.

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We shared the pork tenderloin entree and it was heaven. The pork was served with a mango and cranberry chutney over sweet potato hash with giant grilled plantains. I think this was one of the best entrees I’ve ever had!!
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On the side, we had a warm shaved brussels salad with toasted walnuts and mustard poppy seed vinaigrette.
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I’ve declared Origin my new favorite neighborhood eatery!
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We were invited to a Superbowl party on Sunday, so I obviously baked. I made cookie cups because I’m so obsessed with Earth Balance butter cream. I also made a mexican inspired quinoa salad to add something healthy-ish to the buffet. It was not a hit, but the cups were.
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Our friends had a ridiculous set-up, so I spent the evening in this recliner:)

Hope yall had a good one too. See ya.

8 Comments

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  1. Mitra

    What’s your eating out and grocery budget like? I would love to go out more but it’s easy to overspend.

    • Laura

      Hey Mitra,

      Matt and I each contribute to a joint account, so that we have $50 to eat out every Saturday night (because that’s our thing!). We generally pick restaurants that won’t total more than $70-$90, which often means we have to split an entree if we want to try appetizers or keep it to one drink if it’s an expensive place. If we go out on Friday, we generally choose cheaper options like tacos or burgers that are closer to $30 for the meal.

  2. Kelly

    Those cookie cups look great. I love the Mrs Fields cookie cups in the mall, and these look similar. Can you share the recipe?

    • Laura

      I used to love those as a kid and these are similar!! I used store bought dough (I like the ingredients in the Immaculate Baking Co. dough at Whole Foods) and then roll the cookies into balls before placing in mini cupcake wrappers in mini cupcake pans. Bake as directed and when they cool, top with butter cream (I’ve been making a basic icing with Earth Balance in place of butter and powdered sugar). Let me know if you have questions!

  3. Robin

    Pugs are the best!!! I say this from experience, that they are wonderful, loving, sweet, and mischievous (in a good way!) dogs. What’s your friend’s pug’s name? He/she is a cutie!

  4. Cindy

    I would luv the recipe for the “earth balance” frosting. I am not a natural in the kitchen so having “exact ” ingreds. I would need- and I want to make these. These Look so good. I have tried earth balance for swapping out butter in cookies with complete failure-so I would like to try again. I enjoy your blog!
    Thank-you!

    • Laura

      I just used a regular buttercream recipe and subbed one-for-one. Generally, the portions are: 1 cup Earth Balance (2 sticks or ½ pound) softened, 4 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar, and 1 tablespoon vanilla.

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