Friday, December 26, 2014

Amura Sushi – Orlando, FL


I’m a huge fan of sushi, yet I realized since I started the food blog, I haven’t reviewed any sushi places! My all time favorite here in Tampa is Yoko’s Japanese Restaurant.  But Amura in Orlando is pretty close on that list. 

My cousin Fran is getting married soon, so she had her bachelorette party in Orlando last weekend! I got there a day early to spend some time with family, so Friday night we headed out to dinner at Amura. 

I’ve been to one of their other locations a few times before (I think it was the one in Lake Mary), but this is my first time at the downtown location. 

I ordered a miso soup to start.  For the rest of the meal, we got a variety of rolls to share along with an order of their geisha shrimp, which is coated in a creamy sauce. 

My favorite rolls of the night were the Godzilla (krab, eel, smoked salmon, avocado, and orange sauce) and the Volcano (scallop, krab, salmon, avocado, and cream cheese), but really everything was fantastic. 

Amura has several locations around Orlando.  The one we visited was located at 54 West Church Street, Orlando, FL 32801 and is open 11am – 3pm then 5pm – 10pm Monday through Thursdays, 11am – 3pm then 5pm – 11pm on Fridays, 5pm – 11pm Saturdays, and 5pm – 10pm on Sundays.   

Monday, December 22, 2014

Bacon Wrapped Dates


I’ve made bacon wrapped dates for two separate potlucks this week – they are one of the easiest appetizers to make, and they taste incredible.  Anyone could make these – it takes almost no cooking skills whatsoever. 

The second batch I made I actually drizzled with balsamic glaze.  You could also stuff them with goat cheese if you want to be extra fancy!

Bacon Wrapped Dates

·        Dried, pitted dates
·        Bacon
·        Balsamic glaze (optional)
·        Toothpicks

1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

2. Cut your bacon in half.  

3. Wrap each date in a half slice of bacon and hold together with a toothpick and place on a baking sheet with edges (to make sure the bacon grease doesn’t run off the sides).

4. Cook your dates for 15 minutes, then flip them over and bake them an additional 10 – 15 minutes more, or until the bacon starts to get crispy. 

5. Put on serving plate and drizzle with balsamic glaze. 

Orlando Brewing, Yum-mi Sandwiches & Kilwins


Last week we took a day trip to Orlando on our day off.  We started off at Harry P. Leu Gardens – I had never been there before, but it’s a beautiful 50 acre botanical garden. 

Luckily we got lots of walking in at the gardens because we spent the rest of the day eating & drinking.  We stopped for a quick lunch at Yum-mi Sandwiches, which serves Vietnamese style banh-mi sandwiches. 

It was a super casual restaurant but the food was very good.  We split the Shrimp & Pork Yum-Yum Crunch Rolls, then each had our own sandwich.   

Lance ordered the V.P. – with Vietnamese-style Philly steak, cheese, and 2 eggs on top.  Mine was the Miss Piggy – with caramelized pork belly, lettuce, and tomatoes.  I added an egg to the top since the egg on Lance’s sounded so good.  It didn’t compete with Bamboozle, but I was happy with our food.  
Afterwards we headed to Orlando Brewing.  Surprisingly, there aren’t very many local breweries in the area – we’re spoiled with having several dozen in the Tampa Bay area.  I tried a flight with a variety of beers – the best by far was the Girl Stout – which tasted like liquid Thin Mint cookies. 


We picked up a copy of Southern Brew News which had a map of every brewery in the Southeast.  Lance has framed it and started marking all the ones we’ve been to (we’ve got a lot to go – Florida has 104…)

We finished the day in Celebration, FL where they have fake snow every evening at Christmas time.  It was really just bubbles (I don’t know why I was expecting shaved ice...guess it would melt instantly).   

Our “dinner” was ice cream from Kilwins (we couldn’t resist the waffle cone smell coming out the front door).   
Yum-mi Sandwiches is located at 1227 North Mills Avenue, Orlando, FL 32803 and is open 10 am – 8pm Monday – Tuesday, and Thursday - Saturday, and 10 am – 6pm on Sundays (they are closed Wednesdays).  
Orlando Brewing is located at 1301 Atlanta Avenue, Orlando, FL 32806 and is open 3pm – 10pm Monday through Thursday, 1pm – 12am Friday & Saturday, and 1pm – 9pm on Sunday. 

Kilwins has several locations – the one we visited was located at 671 Front Street, Kissimmee, FL 34747 and is open 11am – 10pm Sunday through Thursday and 11am – 11pm Friday & Saturday.