Tag Archives: pittsburgh food

5 Thing Friday

6 Dec

1.  We finally got a chance to see We’re The Miller’s this week.  It was absolutely hysterical!  I will not put any spoilers here, but you should definitely watch it if you get a chance.  I was worried that the previews gave away all of the funny parts, but even Hollywood promotional materials couldn’t ruin it.


2.  Mother Jones came out with a pretty good article about BPA this week.  After years of public outcry and evidence of toxicity, the endocrine disrupting chemical known as BPA is being banned from plastic bottle manufacturing and baby/child products.  However, think tanks are forecasting the BPA industry to see even more growth over the next 6 years. Despite Americans’ increased focus and awareness of environmental/health issues, North America is the third largest regional market for BPA in the world.  Wha?  I just don’t understand.

3.  The dates have been announced for Pittsburgh’s Winter 2014 Restaurant Week, which will run from January 13th-19th.  Make sure you check out the PRW website and make a reservation somewhere you have never been!  I strongly recommend checking out restaurants that support the Farm To Table or Eat Local movements – and yes, they are labeled so on the website.


4.  The NY Times released a Civil Behavior piece questioning whether college applicants should address their own sexual identity it in their application essays.  The author’s advice to applicants is to research the college to which they are applying for and then decide whether to address the issue based on the intended admissions department.  It’s disgusting that applicants are chastised for not “digging deep enough” or “getting personal enough” when representing themselves in these essays, yet should sometimes withhold their sexual identity, which is at the very core of that identity.  If you aren’t gay or aren’t yet gay, let me tell you – its a pretty big part of your personality, self-image, history, and more than likely will direct your moral compass and values.  More often than not, coming out is something that you battled with yourself or your family or your friends or schoolmates or teammates or neighbors.


So, yeah.  Lezbihonest, it’s not cool to ask people to omit/cover up such a huge part of their core self to simply BE WORTHY ENOUGH TO EARN AN EDUCATION from a higher institution which has promised the general public to better society.  Needless to say, this article made me want to get in the car and drive to the closest conservative college and suck face with my girlfriend in the middle of the admissions office.  DURING prospective student tours.

5.  So. Many. Babies.  None of them belong to me though – so big congratulations go out to David & Melanie, Roney & Alicia, Meg & Dennis, Ed & Di, and anyone else who popped one out over the last few weeks.

Weekend Ponderings:

  • Do you think LGBT college applicants should address their sexual identities?  Only if it suits their overall topic?  Avoid it completely?
  • Which restaurants are you going to try this for 2014 Pittsburgh Restaurant Week?

Review: Pittsburgh Taco Truck

22 Jun

On Thursday, the stars aligned.

As we were driving down Perry Highway for a random afternoon delivery, we spotted it.  The Pittsburgh Taco Truck was parked in the lot at The Coffee Buddha and the windows were up!  Finally, finally, finally!  My schedule is just so hectic that I don’t have the luxury of running off to random places to enjoy food anymore.  Every once in a while I find that I catch a break, though, and can take advantage while en route to something work-related.


Food trucks are a relatively new addition to the Pittsburgh area.  In fact, three years ago I had never seen one (and no, the ones near CMU don’t count – they don’t move around and their food is absolutely horrible)!  But now, Pittsburgh is embracing the food truck craze and I think we owe a lot of it to the Pittsburgh Taco Truck, who used social media, old-fashioned elbow grease, and righteous indignation toward city policies to start the revolution.  This year, Pittsburgh Magazine named them the best mobile food restaurant.

This was their menu on Thursday:


Christina ordered the 1/3 lb. Angus Ground Beef with Cheddar Jack and Salsa and also the Chicken+ Bacon + Cheddar.  She was nervous about the Sriracha cream, so she asked if he would put the avocado cream on instead.  Success!!  Two very enthusiastic thumbs up from the picky eater.  Don’t repeat this, you guys, but she said she preferred their taco shells to Smoke’s.  I think its because they doubled up on the shells and it complimented the amount of filling.  It’s all about the ratio for her, people!  I wanted to grab a pic, but by the time I thought to look over – they had mysteriously disappeared…

I ordered the Spicy Jerked Chicken w/ Avocado Cream which was excellent.  (It also mysteriously disappeared before a photo op).  That jerk chicken is spicy with a capital “S” – this little guy packed more punch than I thought it would.  No complaints, I like some heat.  I also ordered the Grilled Flank Stank (medium) w/ Kimchi.  So good.  I mean, so so so good.  If you’re not sure what kimchi is, its Korea’s most recognizable dish made from cabbage.  It’s super salty and can be made at varying levels of spice.  I honestly am not sure how spicy this taco was because my taste buds were still feeling the heat from the Jerk Chicken taco.  Either way, it was deliciously salty and tasty.


Some other things I love about The Pittsburgh Taco Truck:


Did you notice this in the first pic?  How awesome is that?!  If you didn’t notice it, they proudly advertise it.  Just bringing focus to that fact gets people thinking about it.  It sets a best-practices standard for other food trucks too, in my opinion.

While writing this post, I was checking out their Facebook page.  I noticed that on different days the menu board described the Flank Steak “grass-fed” and some days it didn’t say that.  So, I did what any blogger would do and I took to Twitter.  In the time it took me to write one paragraph, I tweeted the truck and got a quick reply.


Excellent customer service, sustainable values, and generally awesome food.

If you’re ever wondering where you can catch the Pittsburgh Taco Truck, check out their social media:www.facebook.com/pghtacotruck

www.twitter.com/pghtacotruck   OR  just tweet them @pghtacotruck

Redecorating With Red Pepper Soup

23 May

Today I was CRAVING vegetables.  Must be the gorgeous weather or my elevated levels of working out, but I needed red pepper soup.  So, I made some!  I made it this afternoon and I reheated it for dinner.

It is super easy, you guys and a really healthy, seasonal side.

First I put 2 cups of wine into a soup pot and heated it over medium heat for just a few minutes.

I know you’re supposed to cook with a wine that you would drink and not some grocery story “cooking wine,” so I headed to the liquor store and somehow ended up leaving with this:

Tell-tale sign of an amateur cook:  I have no idea what it tastes like, what chardonnay tastes like or what the heck Fish Eye is, but it was inexpensive and I liked the label! Whatever, once it started heating up, it smelled amazing.

I quickly added in 1 medium chopped onion, 5 chopped roasted red peppers (I had Reese’s brand in my fridge which were marinated in olive oil and garlic), and 2 cups of chopped celery.

I stirred this constantly for 3 minutes (partly because I’m neurotic and partly because I’m winging most of this stuff).  Then added some garlic:

I let that cook a little longer…hung out….checked out how happy my compost bin looks again now that its not empty…

Not so yum.  But happy, nonetheless.

After I stopped chasing butterflies, I added some tomatoes:

And then some tomato paste:

And 2 cups of chicken broth:

Then it started looking like a soup and not some alcoholic vegetarian treasure pot.

I covered it and brought it to a boil.  Then I let it simmer for around 30 minutes.

Here’s where it gets tricky.  The recipe I was following said to put the soup into a food processor or blender and puree it.

So I did tried.

You see what happened was….

I filled my blender too full.  And it exploded.  I mean exploded everywhere.

Luckily, my iPhone in my WHITE Otterbox was on the other side of the room.  Trust me, there was soup in the toaster, in a Yankee candle, all over the stove, dripping down the cabinets and all over one of the dogs. OBVIOUSLY I’m not going to put my phone in jeopardy to take a photo of this mess.

But eventually, I did get the puree I needed (in more reasonable batches).

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