#100DaysOfFoodBlogging, Reviews

Review: Popeyes® Smoky Garlic Chile Chicken

Popeyes Smoky Garlic Chile Chicken | getinmymouf.com

[This is post #039 towards #100DaysOfFoodBlogging, our goal to do 100 posts in 100 days as part of The 100 Day Project. Yeah, we’re behind, but we’ll catch up…]

As announced this week by Hector A. Muñoz, Chief Marketing Officer of Popeyes, the Smoky Garlic Chile Chicken “features the flavors of slow-smoked morita chile peppers and garlic in our marinade, bringing a slow-smoked heat to our premium tenderloins.” If you’re more of a visual learner, you can watch the television commercial here.

I’m not one to shy away from limited time promotions at Popeyes (especially those deliciously crispy/spicy/sweet Waffle Tenders!), so I stopped by my favorite fast food fried chicken place to check out the goods.

Popeyes Smoky Garlic Chile Chicken | getinmymouf.com

Smoky Garlic Chile Chicken

Looks:  Very similar to their standard chicken tenders, although (and I’m not sure if it was just a random coincidence), the Smokey Garlic Chile tenders were in larger “cubes” than the long skinny traditional tenders. Not sure if it makes a difference, but that shape may help decrease the chances of your tenders getting a bit dried out and overcooked, as has occasionally happened with their skinnier counterparts.

Texture:  Juicy interior, with their famous crispy crunch on the outside. The promotional signs talk of a “southern style crispy coating,” which I’m not really sure if that’s any different than their normal breading. I didn’t notice a huge difference, save for maybe a touch more crunchiness (but that could be the sign psychologically manipulating me).

Taste:  You definitely get the smoky flavor. Spice level is subtle and I would rank it below their traditional spicy tenders. What I enjoyed most was that the smoky garlic flavor permeated the meat. So, even if you ripped off all the breading (as I have done before), the chicken will still have a really nice smoky taste.

Popeyes Smoky Garlic Chile Chicken | getinmymouf.com

Garlic Herb Sauce

This sauce is a winner winner Smokey Garlic Chile Chicken dinner. To me it was a fast food version of a garlic aioli, and I rank this above a normal Buttermilk Ranch, but below their Blackened Ranch. The tenders aren’t spicy enough to require a dipping sauce, but it never hurts to take a dip.

Verdict

I would absolutely buy these again. In fact, as I’m writing this my mouth is starting to water as I think about them… I enjoyed these better than the recent tangy/spicy Red Stick Chicken, but not quite as much as the legendary Waffle Tenders. If you want to try them, I recommend you hurry, because these smoky tenders will be gone after June 28th.

Continuing the delicious and endless cycle of limited time offerings, they even had the promotional posters out for July’s product:  Hushpuppy Butterfly Shrimp. Interesting…very interesting…

Popeyes Hushpuppy Butterfly Shrimp | getinmymouf.com

If you liked this post, you might like THE BACON BOX:  AN OPEN LETTER TO PIZZA HUT.

The Pizza Hut Bacon Box | getinmymouf.com

Disclaimer:  No money or free chicken was provided to us for this post. I can even show you the receipt if you want. All opinions and chicken adjectives are our own.

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#100DaysOfFoodBlogging

Why We’ll Never Make Fish & Chips Again…Ever

fish and chips | getinmymouf.com

[This is post #038 towards #100DaysOfFoodBlogging, our goal to do 100 posts in 100 days as part of The 100 Day Project. Yeah, we’re behind, but we’ll catch up…]

“Let’s make fish and chips!”

It seemed like a great idea when we woke up this morning…

Oh the tricks our minds play.

We used this recipe from Tyler Florence. The recipe and the food were actually good, so the declaration in the title wasn’t a result of how things tasted.

The fish itself was cooked well, and possibly better than most places. Our homemade tarter sauce with capers, pickles, parsley, and Cholula hot sauce wasn’t too shabby, either. I’ll definitely be dipping fast food fries in it pretty soon… And as a bonus for those needing to avoid gluten, the fish recipe is wheat-free, utilizing rice flour and soda water (instead of beer).

However, as good as it all was, it wasn’t great. And since it was just good, we don’t think it was worth the effort. After about two hours in the kitchen (on top of the hour it took to go grocery shopping), we were left with a house that smells of fish and a kitchen smattered in oil.

All of which might have been fine, but there’s a perfectly good pub about 10 minutes from our house, which serves a solid fish and chips and plenty of ice cold beer.

I’m sure if we had a deep fryer, a hood ventilation system, and a cod surplus, we’d be frying up fish and chips all the time. But until then…

Never again.

Fish & Chips | getinmymouf.com

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#100DaysOfFoodBlogging, Travel

Five Travel Tips for a Super Awesome Vacation

Travel Tips | getinmymouf.com

[This is post #037 towards #100DaysOfFoodBlogging, our goal to do 100 posts in 100 days as part of The 100 Day Project. Yeah, we’re behind, but we’ll catch up…]

Tiffany at The Together Traveler posted some great tips she picked up from a packing workshop she attended with bloggers from The Dining Traveler, Spicy Candy DC, A Lacey Perspective, and McCool Travel. So, if you’re planning a trip, be sure to check out her two posts for some great ideas:

“Tips for Your Next Trip for a Traveling Pro”

“Packing Tips from Seasoned Traveling Pros”

Her posts inspired us to think about some of the things we’ve learned over the years. Although we’re not as seasoned travelers as the folks mentioned above, we’ve definitely made some mistakes and picked up a few shortcuts along the way. So, here are five of our tips for a super awesome vacation.

1.  Plan out your very first meal at your travel destination. 

Tony Tutto's Mill Valley | getinmymouf.com

Our first meal during our last trip to the Bay Area: Tony’s Tutto’s in Mill Valley, CA.

There’s nothing worse than stepping off a six hour flight in a new location, sweaty, slightly over-whelmed, and tired. Oh and STARVING. Your vacation has started, but you can’t even start relaxing because you still have to pick up your bags. I’m not sure about you, but the first hour or two in a new location is always a bit hectic for us. And there’s nothing worse than having an awful first meal. We learned the hard way, so I always make sure to scope out a good or familiar spot to grab a bite to eat so we can get our bearings.

2.  Set aside at least one day of your trip for improvisation. 

Travel Tips | getinmymouf.com

Because you never know when you might be spending four hours searching for starfish at Torrey Pines in San Diego.

As much as we all like to cram as many activities into our vacations as possible, there’s nothing less relaxing than following a strict itinerary for an entire week. It’s great to maximize your time–and let’s be honest, there are some places you’ll only get to visit once–but it never hurts to build a “free day” into your plans. Maybe you’ll feel like exploring an area you weren’t aware of before. Maybe you want to go back and repeat an activity from your first day. Maybe you just need a day to recoup after drinking for 2, 3, or 4 days straight…

3.  Buy luggage in the brightest color possible.

Travel Tips | getinmymouf.com

This bag is so bright, you need to wear sunglasses to pack.

I have a bright orange luggage set. This luggage as has been one of the best travel purchases of my life, because when the sea of black and navy blue suitcases flow out of the baggage claim conveyor belt, mine clearly stands out. So, if you’re in the market for a bag, pick the one with the most offensive color or design.

4.  Hire a tour guide.

Yokahu Tower

View from Yokahu Tower @ El Yunque in Puerto Rico. A trip that was much easier thanks to our tour guide, Rob.

Although it can be expensive, the value of joining a group tour or hiring a private tour guide can make it more than worth it. Skip the large, crowded tours you find in heavy tourist areas and look for smaller, more intimate tour guides on TripAdvisor or Yelp. We’ve mentioned before in our “Five (mostly food-related) Things We Miss About Puerto Rico” that the highlight was clearly a result of amazing rainforest tour guide, Rob of Sunset Tours. He made it worth the money and was even able to recommend restaurants for us to try during the remainder of our trip.

5.  Bake cookies to take on your trip. 

Momofuku Milk Bar Cookie Mix Review | getinmymouf.com

I just like eating homemade cookies on long flights. Especially these Momofuku Compost Cookies.

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#100DaysOfFoodBlogging, Recipes

Balsamic Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries & Almonds

Balsamic Brussels Sprouts with Cranberry & Almonds | getinmymouf.com

[This is post #036 towards #100DaysOfFoodBlogging, our goal to do 100 posts in 100 days as part of The 100 Day Project.]

I think it’s pretty common (cliché even?) for a food blogger to talk about how they used to hate Brussels sprouts as a kid.

So, I’m not going to talk about how I never actually tasted them as a child.

I definitely won’t speak of how the smell was so horrid that I hid under my bed whenever they were on the menu.

And I absolutely shall not mention that one occasion where I cried at the dinner table.

I will note that I almost cried tears of joy after tasting these Brussels sprouts, though. It had a been a rough day at work, and I was famished. Either way these sprouts of Brussels were better than my younger self could have ever expected.

And as a triple bonus, this recipe is a great way to clear out your pantry of any leftover nuts and dried fruit. In fact, you could probably swap out the almonds for macadamia nuts, the cranberries for dried pineapple, and the balsamic for rice wine vinegar and call this “Tropical Brussels Sprouts with Pineapple and Macadamia Nuts.” It’s like those Choose Your Own Adventure booksexcept without the possibility of time-traveling to a land where dinosaurs roam free.

Balsamic Brussels Sprouts with Cranberry & Almonds | getinmymouf.com

Served with baked halibut and dill potatoes.

Balsamic Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries & Almonds

  • 1 Pound Brussels Sprouts, halved
  • 2 Tblspns Olive Oil
  • 1/4 Cup Almond Slivers
  • 1 1/2 Tblspn Acetum Blaze Balsamic Glaze (not an affiliate link)
  • 1/4 Cup Cranberries
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Wash, trim, dry, and halve Brussels sprouts lengthwise.

2. Toss dry Brussels sprouts with a light coating of olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste.

3. Bake at 400 degrees for approximately 30 minutes. Meanwhile, toast the almonds in a small frying pan until they turn golden and smell really freaking good.

4. Toss hot Brussels sprouts with 1 1/2 tablespoons Blaze Glaze, toasted almonds, and cranberries until evenly coated. Enjoy!

 

P.s. Does this cover photo remind anyone else of the black and white ink blot cards that psychologists use on their patients? According to this, it can help to determine an individual’s personality characteristics and emotional functioning. All it’s telling me is that I’m hungry!

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#100DaysOfFoodBlogging, Reviews

Rice Battle: Arborio vs. Carolina Gold

arborio vs. carolina gold rice | getinmymouf.com

[This is post #035 towards #100DaysOfFoodBlogging, our goal to do 100 posts in 100 days as part of The 100 Day Project.]

Last week we had a very brief post, singing the praises of Anson Mills Carolina Gold Rice.

We made the classic separate-grain recipe (aka “Charleston Ice Cream“) and it was so good that no adjectives were necessary. Even the most hyperbolic of adjectives seemed to fall short. Epic. Game-changing. BEST EVER. None of them worked.

Anyway, in some aspects, the Charleston Ice Cream reminded us of risotto, so Tina was curious if the recipe would hold up if we swapped out the Carolina Gold with with Italian arborio rice.

arborio vs. carolina gold rice | getinmymouf.com

Tina followed the Anson Mills recipe, by first boiling it with a bay leaf, salt, and pepper, then baking it (with PLENTY of butter). The grains are a bit larger, so she baked the arborio for an extra five minutes.

arborio vs. carolina gold rice | getinmymouf.com

The verdict:  The arborio rice was far better than most traditional rices you would find at a grocery store (apologies, Uncle Ben); however, the flavor and texture of the Carolina Gold was clearly superior. Clearly this wasn’t a fair fight, but with the amount of butter in the recipe, the arborio rice works fine and for all intents and purposes is an acceptable substitution. Especially if you don’t want to spend $7 for 14 oz.

But if you’re in search of flavor perfection and you don’t mind paying the extra cash, stick with the Carolina Gold.

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