Saturday, April 28, 2012

TaWanda! Fried Green Tomatoes

Sorry for the delay friends, I’ve found out I am susceptible to writers block. I wanted to write about a farm market that I discovered, but after four different attempts, I am going in a different direction.  By trade, I am a PR person; most of my clients have been restaurants, and wine stores. After reading what I had written, I thought it was too much of a PR pitch and not a blog. So, scrapping those, here’s today’s blog. I will be including a little about the farm market, but it won’t be the topic, just an added note. 

It’s Saturday morning and last night, I made two of my childhood favorites for dinner... Fried Green Tomatoes and fresh Black-eyed peas.

Long before the movie, I had eaten my fair share of these tart, crunchy rounds of happiness.  My grandmother Flora Bell, my mom Shirley Ann and my Aunts Roxie and Viva all had Fried Green Tomatoes (FGT) in their repertoire.  Since Jessica Tandy, Kathy Bates and the cast of this charming flick, this dish has become popular in both casual and fine dining restaurants around the country. Chefs add their own twist on this Americana classic with spices, different crusts and sauces, but personally, when it comes to FGT's, I’m a purist... no need to change what my family has made for the past decades. Simply put, it’s just that good.  By the way, there is an actual Whistle Stop Café in Juliette, Georgia.  After filming the movie, building owners kept the café going. My husband and I discovered it on a vacation a few years ago. We couldn't help ourselves, we ate their FGT's and they were pretty good!

When you watch Jessica Tandy’s character Ninny bite into her birthday present, you can taste how good they are. Every time I watch this movie, I get a craving to make them.  What can I say about this dish... with the first bite, the cornmeal crunch resonates in your mouth, then the tartness and creaminess of the unripe tomato draws you in, and if you’re like me, you’re hooked.  Last night, I made them along with pan-seared pork chops, and another childhood favorite, Black-eyed peas. My husband told me that he thought the tomatoes stole the show. Thank you honey!  No matter what side of the gourmet street you are, FGT's are without a doubt a delicious addition to our nation’s culinary history.   Speaking of history, I found an interesting article about Fried Green Tomatoes in a blog for the Smithsonian. Here’s the link.... Interestingly the article says that food historian’s claim this might possible be a Jewish and Midwestern recipe, and that may be true, although I’m not Jewish, I am a true blue Midwesterner, albeit transplanted to Florida. 

My family’s recipe differs somewhat from other recipes. I found several including a Southern Living magazine recipe, that uses a “batter” rather than how my family does it, which is dip in flour, egg, and cornmeal.  Frankly, I’m not a big fan of the batter style.  I think it detracts from the purity of the dish. But that’s just my opinion, and I won’t fault anyone else for their preferences.  

Mama D’s Classic Fried Green Tomatoes

Two       Green Tomatoes sliced into eight even slices
1 ½ C.    Corn Meal
1 C.         Flour
1              Egg beaten
Salt and Pepper
Oil and Bacon Grease heated in Skillet

Combine 2 T. bacon grease and oil into skillet (cast iron preferred) about a ½-inch high. (I find the bacon grease adds an element of flavor to the tomatoes, and that’s how my family did it.) Place flour, beaten egg and cornmeal into three different bowls.  While grease is heating, dredge tomato slices in flour, then egg, then cornmeal.  Let tomatoes sit for a few minutes. Once grease is hot, cook in batches, carefully placing tomatoes into pan. Cook until both sides are golden brown.   Once they are done, I recommend tomatoes rest a few minutes; otherwise, you’ll burn your mouth badly!  Salt and pepper to taste. You may not need to add additional salt.  You might just catch yourself shouting “TaWanda!” after eating these goodies.

The other highlight from dinner last night was the Black-eyed peas. Boy were they good! During the preparation, cooking and then eating, these gems called the “caviar of the south” brought back a flood of childhood memories. I remember spending the afternoon on the porch with my aunt Roxie shelling peas. Thankfully, I got the last of the fresh peas from the local farm market. I spent a good 40 minutes shelling peas; it’s tedious, but so much better than the frozen or dried varieties. Don’t get me wrong; come New Year’s Day, I’ve got a pot of dried peas that I soaked overnight slow cooking on the stove with a big ham hock.  For last night’s dinner, I didn’t have a ham hock to add, but I did have some excellent Applewood smoked bacon, which worked just fine. Black-eyed peas have a lovely texture, if cooked correctly; they will pop in your mouth. The smoked bacon adds an earthly element to the flavors. You can add other ingredients like chopped ham, onions, or peppers... we called those additions fancy peas.  I can tell the difference between the fresh peas and dried, the fresh really do taste fresh, bright and lively.  For my peas, I simply shelled and rinsed them. I covered the peas with water, added four strips of bacon, salt and pepper (about a half-teaspoon of salt and a teaspoon of pepper), brought to a boil and then let simmer for about 40 minutes.  In a black-eye pea shell, they are so good!  

I got my tomatoes and peas from the local farm market just down the road from my house. I recently discovered this Sarasota treasure with my friend Karen. Bins upon bins of fresh farm-grown produce. Mind-blowing fruits, vegetables, meats, Amish cheeses and more – too many to name. Since discovering this place, I’ve shopped there several times a week. Now, I don’t have to wait for the Saturday Farmer’s Market downtown. And, the prices are a-mazing! So much cheaper than the grocery store or gourmet market. I’ve been inspired to cook more family recipes because of this place. Unlike her granddaughter, my grandmother had a “fruitful” garden.  She grew juicy tomatoes bursting with flavor, snappy green beans, firm okra, tart crab apples and sugar sweet corn.   

Our dinner was a bit monochromatic. Normally, I try to add a little color for visual balance, but I was focused on the FGT’s and black-eyed peas, and this is what we got. Nonetheless, it was good!  Pork chops had a light sprinkling of dried thyme, sage, crushed fennel seed and celery seed  before I pan seared them.  I deglazed the pan with some leftover Riesling. 

Reading and proofing this blog, it’s so much better than the previous attempts... I hope that you will enjoy reading it. I love that I can share my culinary family history with you. 

It’s Just That Good has reached over 1500 page views. I see that I have readers in the U.S., Canada, U.K., Russia, India, Mexico, Germany, Philippines and the Netherlands. I am so honored that you all read my blog. It tickles me to no end -thank you very much! If you have comments, please feel free to leave a note, or share your own food experiences with me.  By the way, if you see an ad on my blog that interests you, please click on it, every click helps to feed my food blog obsession!

Next week’s topic... Corn Bread!

Until then... happy eating!
SRQ Foodie

Friday, April 20, 2012


Ooey-Gooey- Goodness on a Fork!

Sometimes you need the comfort of your mother’s love. Unfortunately, my mom is no longer on this earth, but I can still find that comfort in her recipes. My mom Ann was a wonderful cook. I tasted the love, heart and soul she put in each dish.  One recipe in particular that she made so very well was a St. Louis classic, Gooey Butter Cake. This was one of her signature dishes, and requested often by her friends.  After she passed, one friend would call me every couple of months asking for her recipe. I’m not sure what he did with all the other ones, but I was happy to oblige.  This “breakfast” cake (yes, it is classified as breakfast food) is a sweet make-your-teeth hurt addiction. You can only have a small serving at a sitting, but you’ll find yourself sneaking into the kitchen to pinch off a bite.

As I said, this is a St. Louis classic. I know that Paula Deen gets a lot of credit for this dish; in fact, of all the Gooey Butter Cake recipes on the Food Network’s website, the majority has her byline. I’m glad that she loves it, and that she has brought it attention to her fans, however, it’s a Midwest classic.  I found an interesting “rant” blog by someone who was really upset about Paula "taking" credit for Gooey Butter. No matter... I am thankful that Paula’s fans now know this wonderful dessert.  For the record, Gooey Butter Cake was created in the 1930’s by a German baker, who had accidentally mixed up ingredients. During the depression and not wanting to waste anything, he offered this gooey product to his customers. I’m so glad that he didn’t throw it out, because this is a great addition to the nation’s culinary history.  This born and bred St. Louisan loves-loves his dessert.  Side note: here’s a story in the New York Times about Gooey Butter Cake.
Yellow Cake Mix and Eggs
So, why love Gooey Butter Cake? What’s not to love, it’s the ultimate sweet treat. There’s nothing else like it, it’s sort of a combination of brownie and coffee cake. When I am missing my mom, this is one of her recipes that I go for first.  With one bite, all is right with the world. Imagine a rich, dense cake with an amazing cream cheese filling that will curl your toes with happiness.  As the filling bakes, it creates this thin crust, and as your fork crunches down, it’s like breaking the top of a crème brûlée. After the cake has cooled a bit, sprinkle the top with power sugar. Not that it needs more sweetness, (Oh, but it does) the visual appearance of the powdered sugar looks like the dusting of a first snow. Ah, it makes me happy just thinking about it.

Gooey Butter Cake Base and Filling
My mom’s recipe uses a yellow cake mix; (Duncan Hines) it’s how she made it, and frankly, I’m not going to mess with perfection. I have found some recipes with a from scratch cake base, and at some point I might try my hand at them.  However, I recently made my first cake from scratch for Easter and it took two rounds and two different recipes to be successful, so I’m not in any hurry.  One recipe on my must-try list is from one of my blog idols Smitten Kitchen.

Crispy Corner Brownie Pan
Putting my own twist on a classic...
Last year, I bought one of those brownie pans that make the brownies with four corners on each one. I kept seeing those commercials for the “Original” brownie pan and wanted to try one, however, I am hesitant about buying any product from an infomercial. One day while my husband and I were in Bed, Bath & Beyond, I spotted the daddy of awesome brownie pans. It is a heavy-duty solid pan with columns in the middle dividing the batter into 12 different sections. It makes outrageous perfectly baked brownies, each with the desired crunchy four corners.  Here’s the link to order Crispy Corners Brownie Pan from Bed, Bath & Beyond.

Gooey Butter Cake Base
I had wondered if I could use this pan for making Gooey Butter Cake, and yes, you most certainly can! Instead of pressing the cake base into a big 13 x 9 pan, I pressed the batter into the individual sections. Some hard-core Gooey Butter Cake lovers might disagree with me, but you really do need a good ratio of cake to goo.  Too much goo and you are over-powered with sweetness, too little and it’s just cake. You have to combine both for the true GBC experience.  I used my cookie/ice cream scoop to portion out even amounts and it worked great! It was really easy; I pressed the batter up along the sides, making a deep well in the center of each section. Once the base was complete, I mixed the filling and again, scooped the gooeyness into the wells. I was afraid that it would run over, but it worked fine. Full disclosure using this pan, there was some filling left over, I’ll have to work on not wasting any next time.  

Gooey Butter Cake - ready for baking
While the individual cakes were still warm, (when served this way is awesome), I tested the end result on our neighbors Tricia and Niles. Tricia texted me “Holy Crap! These are sooo good!” I have to agree with Tricia, they really are good... maybe we should call them Gooey “Goody” Butter Cake. For a moment, I thought, “Maybe I could make and sell these?”  Who knows, maybe someday!   My husband has had gooey butter cake before, but I think he likes them better this way. The reason I think this... he’s had one for breakfast every morning for the past few days.  On a side note: you can enjoy this dessert with a cold glass of milk, cup of coffee or hot tea, or my husband’s recommendation with a glass of white wine. (Left over from dinner)

Individual Gooey Butter Cakes
I have to admit, eating one of these little gems is like getting a hug from my mom. I hope that you too will try this recipe, my mom would be so happy if you did!

My Mama’s St. Louis Gooey Butter Cake
By Shirley Ann 
Pre-heat over 350 degrees

Bottom Layer
1 Yellow Cake Mix (Duncan Hines)
2 eggs
1 stick butter melted

Mix together, and pat in the bottom of an oblong pan. (or nifty segmented brownie pan.)

Top Layer
1 8oz. Package Philly Cream Cheese
1 Stick Butter -melted
2 eggs
1 tsp. Vanilla
1 box Powdered Sugar

Mix together, and pour on top bottom layer.
Bake 40 to 45 minutes in 350 degree oven until golden brown.
When cooled, sprinkle cake with powdered sugar, and nuts (optional)

Until next time... happy cooking!
SRQ Foodie 

Friday, April 13, 2012

Blue Ribbon Chicken Cordon Bleu

Blue Ribbon Dinner

I will admit I’m not the most organized cook in the world. Many days, I find myself walking the aisles of the grocery store trying to figure out what I am in the mood to cook for dinner.  Some days I know exactly what I want to make, and other days, like yesterday, nothing sparked my desire. I almost suggested to John that we order Chinese or go out. When I asked my husband what he wanted for dinner, he said, “Let’s go to the store”. Okay - so I guess I'm not getting out of cooking tonight. I love to cook, but sometimes, letting someone else do the cooking and the dishes is nice too!

Off to market we go...
So, as we perused the meat aisle, we contemplated pork, steak, lamb, and fish, but again, none of these choices inspired us. John had mentioned that he could grill some chicken. I reminded him that I had cooked chicken for the past two days, one night I fried some tenders, and the next night, I made chicken artichoke pasta. (I replicated this great recipe from a local eatery. I’ll share soon). As I was looking for inspiration in the prepared meats, I suggested to John that I could make Chicken Cordon Bleu.  We have a plan and we have the start of dinner. I ordered ham and Swiss cheese from the deli counter, grabbed a few ears of sweet corn, a box of spring mix and headed home.

With ingredients in hand, now I needed a recipe.  After a few minutes on Google, I found an easy recipe from celebrity chef Tyler Florence. I find that his recipes are always good and relatively easy to make.  I’ve made many of his entrees, and side dishes, one of my favorites are his Pork Schnitzel and Mushroom Spaetzle recipes. They deserve a blog of their own, because, it’s just that good. I promise I’ll share soon!

Tyler’s recipe for Chicken Cordon Bleu (I also included the recipe at the bottom of the blog)

Zowee, the flavors in this dish complement each other so lovely, it’s a symphony of herbs and savory goodness. The French translation for Cordon Bleu means “Blue Ribbon”. Chef Tyler should be awarded a blue ribbon for this recipe.  Technically, this is not a “French” recipe. According to Wikipedia, Chicken Cordon Bleu is an American creation, drawing techniques from Chicken Kiev and schnitzel dishes. The earliest recipe reference is found in the New York Times in 1967. Wouldn’t you agree, whenever you coat meat in a hearty dusting of luscious breadcrumbs and herbs, you have the makings of a classic comfort meal.

Tyler’s recipe said to use panko breadcrumbs, but I have my own stash of homemade breadcrumbs. I started processing all of our leftover “good” breads . Now I have a healthy stock that I keep in the freezer and pull out when needed.   Don’t waste anything, right? I didn’t follow the recipe to a T, Tyler suggests using prosciutto and Gruyere, but since I got the ingredients before I found the recipe, I used what we bought. John said that he thought I made a good choice of ingredients, the sweet ham and Jarlsberg cheese nicely complemented the savoriness of the crumb mixture. Speaking of the crumb mixture, Tyler’s suggestion of fresh Thyme and garlic with the butter is a trifecta of flavor. The texture was perfect, and the aroma is ambrosial -earthy, warm and totally inviting.  F.Y.I. I didn’t add any salt to this recipe. Between the bread, ham, cheese and salted butter, (Don’t judge) I didn’t have to add extra.
This was incredibly easy to make - from beginning to end, I was finished in less than 45 minutes. Pound out the chicken breasts, layer with ham and cheese, and then dip, dip and dip again. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes. Ta-DA - you're done!

The three dipping process really sets the base – flour, egg and crumb mixture. I will have to work on my rolling process. My chicken wasn’t quite as picture perfect as in Tyler’s photo, but with practice, it will get better with time.  I cut the recipe in half, and I am sorry that I did because, I find myself wanting leftovers now. The chicken was seasoned perfectly! This was so much better than the pre-made options available in the grocery store. They’re okay, we’ve made them before, when I didn’t want to cook, however as I said, this is so easy and didn’t’ take a lot of effort. And if you are frustrated, pounding chicken is a fabulous stress reliever.

To complete our dinner, I made some fresh corn and spring mix salad with tomatoes drizzled with walnut oil and white balsamic vinegar. Thank you Tyler - this is definitely a recipe that I will add to my repertoire and make often! And it photographs beautifully.

I highly recommend you make this for your family or guests; you will be the star of the night. On a gourmet note: we enjoyed a lovely light white table wine – La Vieille Ferme – it balanced the richness of the chicken.

Recipe courtesy Tyler Florence, 2008

Prep Time:  20 min
Cook Time:    25 min
Serves:    4 servings

    4 chicken breasts skinless and boneless
    4 thin slices prosciutto di Parma
    1/2 pound Gruyere, grated
    1/4 cup all-purpose flour
    Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
    1 cup panko bread crumbs
    4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves only
    1 clove garlic, peeled and finely minced
    2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
    2 eggs
    Extra-virgin olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Lay the chicken breast between 2 pieces of plastic wrap. Using the flat side of a meat mallet, gently pound the chicken to 1/4-inch thickness. Remove the top sheet of plastic and lay 2 slices of prosciutto neatly over the top to cover the breast and sprinkle a quarter of the cheese over the prosciutto. Tuck in the sides of the breast and roll up tight like a jellyroll inside the plastic wrap. Squeeze the log gently to seal and twist both ends tight to form a nice log. Repeat with remaining chicken.

Season the flour with salt and pepper. Mix the breadcrumbs with thyme, garlic and kosher salt, pepper, and melted butter. The butter will help the crust brown. Beat together the eggs and season so the flour, the eggs and the crumbs are all seasoned.

Remove the plastic wrap. Lightly dust the chicken with flour, dip in the egg mixture and gently coat in the breadcrumbs. Lightly coat a baking pan with olive oil and carefully transfer the roulades onto it. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until browned and cooked through.

Cut into pinwheels and serve on top of Brussels Sprout Hash with Chicken Jus and Cranberry Chutney, if desired.

This really is an amazing dish to make, and I know that you too will receive a "Blue Ribbon" when you make this! 

Until then, I wish you good cooking!
SRQ Foodie

Monday, April 9, 2012

Culinary Explorations: St. Pete, Florida

Sorry for the delay friends, it’s been a busy time for me. I was lucky to get a couple of writing assignments for the Sarasota Herald Tribune – Community section. I had to cover the Sarasota County Fair 4-H and FFA Steer and Swine auctions, and it was fun. Those young entrepreneurs put a lot of hard work into raising their livestock with the hopes of earning money for college. If you’re interested in reading the stories, links to the stories are at the bottom of this blog. 

I’m stepping out of the box so-to-speak with this week’s blog. Normally, I would write about dinner, or a specific recipe, but today, I want to share with you the wonderful day my husband John and I spent enjoying culinary treasures in the area.  Last week, my husband I and spent a day trekking around St. Pete picking up essentials and a few splurges for our culinary pleasures. Then, finished up the day with cheeseburgers and cocktails at a great “Old Florida” style dive.

First up: Mazzaro’s Italian Market in St. Pete, Florida
If you are a true foodie and love everything Italian, Mazzaro’s is the place for you. It is an authentic Italian market. Again, a one-stop-shop for Italian products – wine, spices, capers (six different varieties and sizes combined), fresh made pastas, sauces, breads, and cheese. The market is divided into different sections; deli, espresso bar, bakery, deli, meats, and pastas (plus you can order sandwiches and salads to enjoy there). Reading reviews on YELP, I’m not the only one who is crazy for Mazzaro’s –most reviewers, give four stars or more. 

Today, I’m going to focus on the cheese shop - whether you’re from Wisconsin or not, you’ll definitely become a cheese-head at Mazzaro’s. Starting with their house made fresh Mozzarella. Holy cow! It’s still warm when you get it. I must warn you, once you’ve had this mozzarella, there’s no going back to the store-bought kind, I promise you. It’s a little bit of heaven shaped in a ball. Silky, smooth, rich and creamy - euphoria in your mouth. Just writing about it conjures up a smile on my face. My husband and I find it difficult not to eat the entire thing in one sitting. Restraint is the key. By itself, the fresh mozzarella is ethereal; using it on pizzas, bruschetta (previous blog recipe available) adds an element of creamy richness to any dish. Price: $7.99 a pound – our ball was 1.21 lbs. at $9.67.  

Beyond the mozzarella, Mazzaro’s has a lovely variety of international cheeses available as well... provolone, triple creams, pâté and more. I enjoyed talking with one of their cheese mongers about the different varieties they carry – he definitely found his calling, his passion was infectious.  Another fabulous find is the Parmesan – I’ll admit it’s an extravagance, but if you can, I highly recommend you get an aged parm. The nuttiness of a good-aged Parmesan adds an element of deep flavors that cannot be replicated by the tubs of “Fresh” types in the stores. (Although, for cooking, I tend to use the tubs.)   It’s truly – “Just that good!” I try to keep a block in the fridge to use for finishing, and if I am craving something salty, I’ll peel a strip off for a snack.

I could go on and on about this culinary treasure chest. Mazzaro’s Italian Market is located at 2909 22nd Avenue N, St. Petersburg, Florida 33713. 

My recommendation is to go there and see for yourself.  Saturday is a great day to go; they usually have a wine tasting from 11 to 2 pm, and live-music. However, a forewarning, Saturday is also their BUSIEST day of the week - long lines and crowded aisles might deter someone who is wants to spend a leisurely afternoon exploring this mesmerizing market. For hardcore foodies, it won’t matter, there is so much to discover at this magical mercato (Italian translation - market).  Visit their website to see everything Mazzaro’s has to offer: the baked goods and pastries are divine.  I will warn you, be very careful not to get carried away, from personal experience, it’s way too easy to do. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve blown my budget for the month without blinking an eye.

Another delicious find during our day of epicurean adventures –

Before Christmas last year, I spent the afternoon with my girlfriend Richelle in St. Pete. We started at Mazzaro’s, and then she took me to a delightful olive oil shop - Kalamazoo Olive Oil Company. This is an olive oil gourmet’s dream - rows and rows of unique flavored olive oils and balsamic vinegars. Really astonishing the varieties available there. Next to every steel container, little tasting cups for you to try the interesting blends. On my first visit, I picked up a bottle of white truffle oil, Persian lime oil, fig balsamic vinegar, walnut oil, and a small bottle of Harissa oil (great heat, not overpowering).  

The owner was very knowledgeable and his passion for his products was infectious. The choices were difficult to make, I wanted to get so many more, but after a visit to Mazzaro’s I restrained myself to the five mentioned above.

I have wanted to take John for some time, so, we planned our day to include a visit to Kalamazoo.  This store is similar to a wine shop... so many choices - the difference is you get to try everything! I think we sampled it all: sweet oils, savory oils, spicy oils and all the vinegars. It was a gastronome’s buffet.  The owner created an interesting recipe cheat sheet to mix the oils and vinegars. My personal favorite is combining Persian Lime oil and pineapple white balsamic vinegar. They said it is great for Asian recipes.  Personally, I mixed the two with a little salt and garlic and it was a fabulous marinade for grilled chicken. A great thing about shopping at one of these shops, bring in your empty bottles and get a discount on refills. Kalamazoo Olive Oil Company is located at: 449 Central Avenue, Suite 100, St Petersburg FL 33701.

A tasty recommendation for White Truffle Oil: drizzle atop microwave popcorn for a gourmet treat. Directions: One Bag Microwave Buttered Popcorn. I prefer light buttered microwave popcorn, but almost any will do. Follow directions. Safely open finished bag and drizzle truffle oil on top of popcorn. Shake and repeat. Pour a glass of wine and you’ll have a lovely gourmet snack. I have to “props” to Heath, owner of Magnum Wines in Sarasota for introducing us to this addictive treat.

Next up... Forget the electronic reader, fabulous assemblage of printed treasures.

Okay, our day is almost done... we’ve shopped til we dropped, although I didn’t mention our stop at Haslam’s Book  Store... a must-do in St. Pete. Stopped by just before they closed, so we didn’t have a lot of time to peruse the massive collections. I never looked past the cookbook section, what an impressive section of new and old cookbooks. Shelves of popular chefs’ books, and interesting self-published cookbooks from small community churches. You remember those from the 60’s and 70’s. I picked up a beauty – The Gourmet Cookbook – over 1,000 recipes published over the years by Gourmet Magazine. I promise, you’ll be reading about some great recipes I’ll be trying in the next few weeks. Haslam’s Book Store is located at: 2025 Central Avenue  St. Petersburg, FL 33713.

Final Stop: Pleasure of the Palate: 

We had a wonderful day. We sampled, shopped and spent the day together. After all our adventures, we were ready for some actual food and a drink. Since we were in the area, John suggested we go to Woody’s Waterfront restaurant. It is an “old Florida” dive. This is the type of restaurant Guy Fieri would feature on his Diner, Drive-Ins and Dives show. Out on Blind Pass, it’s a blast from the past – picnic tables and plastic baskets filled with great burgers, fried shrimp and yummy fish sandwiches. We opted for the cheeseburgers and shared a basket of fries. Being Florida during season, we were the youngest people there, with the exception of visiting grandkids. Burgers were cooked perfectly, complemented by a cold beer for John and I had a Woody’s drink special Sangria-Rita; a combination of sangria swirled with a frozen margarita – sort of an adult ice cream swirl. Woody’s Waterfront is located at: 7308 Sunset Way, St. Pete Beach, FL 33706.

It was a great day, and in the following days, John and I enjoyed the fruits of our labor. Together, we found some fabulous local spots to fulfill our culinary cravings.

Links to my articles in the Sarasota Herald Tribune           

Until then,
SRQ Foodie