Brianna’s Poppyseed Dressing

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Hi all! I know it’s been a while since I posted… again. So here’s a quick post about my new favorite salad dressing!

Whenever I visit my family in Maine, I have to make a visit to my favorite restaurant Huot’s. We have known the owner, Denise, and her family since I was young and Huot’s is a part of all my Maine memories. When I was younger, I would go for fried haddock sandwich with french fries but now that I’m more health-conscious I order the clamcake and a house salad with poppyseed dressing. Before Huot’s, I didn’t even know poppyseed dressing existed so I was surprised to I find it on Westside Markets shelves a few weeks ago.

The Brianna’s poppyseed dressing is now a staple in my refrigerator and I find myself using it on all kinds of salads and vegetables. It is great on a simple salad with some cut up fruit, such as strawberries or grapes, or even on top of avocado or peaches on its own. I find myself looking for reasons to use that and for $3.99 a bottle it’s a pretty hard deal to beat!

WW Points: 4 points for 2 tbsp (I only use 1 tbsp on my salads)

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Weekend in Maine

I apologize for being so MIA since last week. I decided to take advantage of the weather and squeeze in some beach days and visit my sister in Maine. And one of the best things about southern Maine? Amazing food! We ate our way around Portland and Ocean Park and I enjoyed every bite. My biggest challenge, however, was sticking within my WW points. Usually when I travel, I give myself a “by” and don’t track but my weight has creeped up enough that I needed to get back on the wagon. I enjoyed myself but used all my extra points (all 49 plus some activity points) in order to do so. Here’s a quick look at some of the places we visited!

My first night in town, I had to go to Huot’s which is a few miles south of our beach house in Ocean Park. We have been coming to Huot’s since I was a baby (and before) and are good friends with the owners. The restaurant is in Camp Ellis and I have numerous memories of walking out on the jetty before, during and after every visit!

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Looking out into Saco Bay from the jetty in Camp Ellis

Every time I eat at Huot’s, I have to have a clam cake. I always brag to friends that you can get an amazing, crispy clam cake for only $2.00 so I was amazed to see that price had risen to $2.60! Everything is getting pricer in Maine…

The next stop was Willard Scoops in Willard Beach, South Portland. This was my first trip here but it has become one of Hannah’s favorites since she moved to Portland full time.

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Willard Scoops

Saturday was another day the beach so Hannah and I opted for lunch at the Ocean Park Deli. Our house is on the edge of town so the “downtown” is a 5 minute walk away (OP is wicked small!). The “downtown” consists of the deli, the library, one sit-down, BYOB restaurant, a gift shop, an antique shop and the Soda Fountain. We grabbed salads and sandwiches and spent another hour or two on the beach.

Hannah had to work Saturday night so I dropped her off at 2:45 before heading into Portland for a snack to hold me over until dinner. Every time I am in town, I have to go to Flatbread Pizza whether it’s to enjoy one of their organic, brick oven pizzas or just their organic salad. The Flatbread salad is something I dream about while I’m away. It consists of a bed of organic greens, shredded carrots, seaweed and sesame seeds with a housemade vinaigrette. I almost always add some blue cheese because it’s so creamy and spicy!

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My roommate, Elly, moved to Portland on Saturday for the summer and she invited me out to dinner. I figured I would go because Hannah was working and I would have some company! Her parents treated me to an unforgettable meal at 555 on Congress St. I had a house salad made with all local greens and produce and the pepper-crusted sea scallops with whipped fennel potatoes and veggies. I was able to meet her parents, her aunt, uncle and cousin.

After Elly said goodbye to her family, we headed over to South Portland to visit Hannah at work. We sat on the deck at the Saltwater Grille and had a cocktail while she finished up her shift. Check out that view!

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Once Hannah finished her shift, we dropped Elly off and headed over to Eventide for a drink and a snack (poor Hannah hadn’t eaten in hours!). I went for the Dirty, Dirty Martini made with Beefeater gin, olive brine, oyster brine and hot sauce. It was super salty and spicy and so delicious!!

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Sunday was yet another beautiful beach day so we were back in Ocean Park. Our friend Lynn (more like a sister) came up from Massachusetts for the day so it was great to catch up after almost a year. It was my last lunch in Maine so Hannah and I went to Bayley’s in Pine Point for a lobster roll. At Bayley’s you can choose if you’d like your bun toasted or not toasted and if you’d like it tossed in butter or mayo. I’m a Maine lobster roll kind of girl so I went for the mayo (but light!)- you all remember my Sunday Funday post about Red Hook Lobster Pound, right? The Bayley’s lobster roll is simple and lets the lobster meat shine through- the perfect treat on a summer day in Maine.

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Hannah had to work again, so Lynn and I went into Portland and did the mailboat cruise around Casco Bay. For all the years I’ve been going to Maine (which is my whole life), I have never been on Casco Bay. The mailboat is a 3 hour cruise that stops on 5 islands in the bay dropping off mail and people. The best part- besides being on the water, in the sun and with a great friend- is that it’s BYOB. That’s right, you can bring booze and drink on the boat! We picked up a 6-pack of Sam Adams Summer Ale and spent a glorious (but windy) 3 hours on the water!

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Here I am with Long Island behind me while we were pulling away from Cliff Island in Casco Bay

For my last meal, Hannah and I went to OTTO Pizza to grab some take out. Rain rolled in Sunday night so we decided to grab some pizza to go and settle in at her house to watch some Sunday night TV. We got one of Hannah’s favorite pizzas- sweet potato, ricotta and dried cranberries. I was hesitant at first but, OMG, it was heavenly! Creamy, sweet, tart but somehow savory. It confused my palate, which is hard to do. It was the perfect finale to a perfect weekend in Maine!

Sunday Funday in BK

I’ve noticed over the past few days that a lot of my recent posts have the tag “unhealthy”. The biggest thing I struggle with in NYC is all the amazing food that is available to me. I want to eat well as much as I can, and I do, but it’s days like yesterday that make it hard. It was a beautiful spring day so my friends, Lauren and Kris, and I decided to venture to the Brooklyn Flea. The BK Flea has an extensive assortment of vendors selling everything from vintage clothing and accessories to BK-made furniture to little trinkets and nick nacks. My favorite aspect, of course, are the multiple food vendors.

Lauren and I took the East River Ferry from E 34th St in the city and Kris jumped on across the river in Long Island City. 2 stops later, the three of us got off the boat and walked right into the flea (located in Williamsburg on N. 6th St and the East River). We were all starving so our first stop was Red Hook Lobster Pound for a lobster roll.

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As you can see, there are two types of lobster rolls available: Maine style and Connecticut style. I grew up living in Maine every summer. Lauren is from a Connecticut beach town called Madison. See the problem? We have argued over which lobster roll is the best more times than I can count. I think we  have finally agreed to disagree! Kris went for a Maine roll like me and we convinced the two people behind us in line to go with the Maine roll as well. Either way, lobster is lobster and it was amazing!

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Lauren ordering her CT style roll

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Kris ordering his Maine style roll

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My Maine lobster roll. SO delicious!

After a little wandering around we noticed a stand that was selling Maple Bacon on a Stick. Bacon on a stick! We all decided we had to have some. I mean who could resist? We went for 3 slices of bacon for $8.

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I have no idea what was in the dry rub (above) but it was delicious. It was so unexpected and it made the bacon even more amazing than I ever thought it could be. Finishing it with a maple glaze just put it over the edge. UNBELIEVABLE and worth every calorie.

We did a little more shopping before I found our next treat- People’s Pop:

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Essentially grown-up snow cones! I went for the Lemon Basil and it was the perfect light and refreshing treat after the lobster roll and the bacon on a stick.

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The three of us decided to share one and take a little walk. We wandered to a German Beer Garden that I have been to a few times but it was PACKED. We were in desperate need for a beer so we decided to head up a few blocks and check out the Brooklyn Brewery.IMG_5196

The brewery is a great place to hang out on the weekends. It has limited hours but the drinking hall has a great vibe. You can order food and have it delivered to you, you can bring cards for drinking games and you can even bring your dog! You have to buy tokens when you first walk in ($5 each or 5 for $20) so we opted to pick up 5 tokens. As you walk in past the cashier, you see a very long line for the beer. The three of us waited and ended up spending all the tokens at once to avoid waiting in line again. Lauren and I got their Saison brewed with lemongrass and Kris went for their East India Pale Ale. We spent the two extra tokens on a perennial beer called the Brooklyn BLAST! which is a double IPA.

Our next stop was just a few doors down for a beer and a shot. For $8 it was hard to resist. We had made up our minds that we were going to check out Fette Sau for a late afternoon snack but it was about a mile away. We agreed the beer and shot would help make that walk a little more fun!!

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The line wasn’t too long at Fette Sau (which is NOT normal) but we ended up waiting about 20 minutes to order. While we were waiting in line, I went to the bar to grab us 3 Manhattans and I ran into some friends from my time working at La Birreria at Eataly. It was such a great surprise! One of them works at Fette Sau so he helped me out with what to order and how much to order. We decided on 6 spare ribs, 1/3 of pulled pork and 1/4 of brisket with a side of burnt-edge baked beans.

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Our platter of food

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My plate of BBQ

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All done!

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Lauren and I finishing up our drinks once all the food was done

Before leaving Brooklyn to head back into the city, we stopped at a great vintage store not far from Fette Sau. I picked up a cute spring bag (my only purchase of the day that was not food) and called it a day. I was SO full but had such an amazing day with Lauren and Kris- probably one of my favorite Sunday fundays to date!