Lifestyle * Travel * Food

Apr 14, 2019

Keto Hot Dogs With Buns

If you are fairly active on social media, I am sure you have heard about the Keto diet. It seems to be the biggest trend in health and dieting. Although I am not doing Keto, I have changed a lot of what I have been eating this year. We have been eating very low carb foods, and have done away with sugar (mostly). Of course some days you need something more than just meat and vegetables. I won't lie, I have moments where I just want a few hot, crispy fries, or a slice of bread on the side of my breakfast omelet. I have been searching for different low carb and no carb bread substitutes. I did make a macadamia fat bread last weekend, but the overpowering nuttiness and richness just weren't for me. 

I have been hearing about keto fat head dough, so I took a basic recipe and tried it wrapped around premium hot dogs. The result was nothing short of amazing. I decided to share the simple recipe for those who are doing the lower carb lifestyle. 

Fat Head Dough Ingredients: 

3/4 cup almond flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
2 ounces cream cheese
2 large eggs
Everything bagel seasoning or topping of your choice (dehydrated onion flakes, garlic, poppy seeds, sesame seeds, parmesan) 
6-8 dinner size or jumbo premium hot dogs


Heat oven to 400° and place parchment paper on a baking sheet. Mix almond flour with baking powder in small bowl and set aside. Crack eggs into a small bowl and lightly beat with a fork. In a large microwaveable bowl, add cream cheese and mozzarella. Microwave for up to 2 minutes until completely melted. Add in the almond flour and eggs to the melted cheese mixture. Mix quickly with a wooden spoon until completed combined and a dough forms. Place dough onto parchment paper. Cut into equal portions according to how many hot dogs you have. Shape each piece of dough into a rectangle that can be wrapped around the hot dog. Place each wrapped dog on baking sheet and sprinkle with everything bagel seasoning. Bake for approximately 12-15 minutes or until nice and golden brown. 

These hot dogs with keto buns really hit the spot and took care of that pesky bread craving.  And trust me, using premium hot dogs makes a big difference. If you have a Kroger store nearby, I suggest the Private Selection Brisket Dogs. My husband and daughters loved them so it looks like these will be added to the weekend menu a few times each month. Next weekend I will make a fat head pizza. We are all looking forward to it!

Be sure to check out these other recipes:

Thank you for stopping by today.
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Apr 10, 2019

Sweetwaters Coffee & Tea Opening In Columbia This Summer

Columbia will soon be home to Sweetwaters Coffee & Tea at 1002 Park St. in the Empire building, near the University of South Carolina campus. The 1,895-square-foot café is set to open this summer and will offer a globally-inspired menu featuring premium coffees, teas, pastries, sandwiches, salads and more.
Sweetwaters Coffee & Tea to offer a destination for students and faculty at USC this Summer

Franchise owner, Greg Dodd, is excited to bring Sweetwaters’ unique atmosphere and quality ingredients to downtown Columbia. “Our global and Asian influence sets us apart. We have many beverages that aren’t found at your average coffee shop,” says Dodd. “We’re looking forward to becoming the go-to destination for college students, faculty and the greater downtown community.”

The Sweetwaters brand focuses on strong community engagement, such as hosting events for local clubs and student organizations and partnering with nonprofits, making it a perfect fit for the Vista location.

The Sweetwaters menu includes signature drinks such as the Dragon Eye, French Vietnamese au Lait, Napali Brew, Thai Iced Tea, and Red Moon coffee.

The grand opening will include numerous community events and week-long promotions that will be announced on Sweetwaters website and Facebook page. The Columbia Sweetwaters location is one of more than 100 expected to open across the country. 

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Apr 7, 2019

N.C. Red Restaurant Opening In Charlotte, NC April 17th

From the award-winning creator of Barrington’s, Good Food on Montford, and Stagioni, New England-New South restaurant N.C. Red is officially ready to debut with an opening on April 17. Owner Bruce Moffett is also proud to reveal the restaurant’s menu. For starters or “Northern Smalls,” the menu includes Point Judith Calamari, Stuffies (NC clams with peppers, bread crumbs, and Chouriço), Baked Seafood Casserole, Seafood Cakes, and Lobsta Roll. An impressive oyster and clam program sourced from both coasts made the menu as well, served up as Grilled, Rockefeller, Casino, or Broiled. As if that doesn’t already make your mouth water, the “Fixin’s” section includes a large selection – from Buttermilk Biscuits, Smoky Mac and Cheese, and Braised Collard Greens, to Corn Pudding and Fried Pickled Green Tomatoes. View the full menu here.

A look at the Oysters Rockefeller, featured on the menu at N.C. Red, opening April 17
“N.C. Red is unlike any of my former restaurants,” explained Moffett, owner of Moffett Restaurant Group. “The artwork in the space along with the atmosphere of Plaza Midwood give it this unique quality that just makes you want to come and stay for a while. I’m thrilled to share this with Charlotte.”

Andrew Dodd will join Moffett at N.C. Red as a partner and Executive Chef, transitioning from his previous executive chef position at Stagioni. A native of Nashville, Dodd has an impressive background of working in the restaurant industry since he was 15 years old. Dodd moved around the U.S. and worked in kitchens in Seattle, Spokane, and Boston before moving to Charlotte in 2007 to attend Johnson & Wales University in Charlotte.

“The more we worked together, the more I loved the vision Bruce had for N.C. Red, and I look forward to introducing an elevated culinary experience to our guests,” says Dodd. “Coming up with a menu that included a mix of classic Southern cuisine with Northeastern style seafood, with a focus on sustainably-farmed bivalves from coast to coast farms, was really exciting. Additional dishes featured on the menu include Nashville Hot or Fried Classic Chicken, Firestyle Steamed Mussels and Clams, Rhode Island Clam Chowder, Poached Crab Salad, and a daily special of pies."

The restaurant will open in the former Penguin Drive-In space in Plaza Midwood, with some original design features remaining from the drive-in. The restaurant selected award-winning, local artist, Randall Kane, known for his mural art and decorative painting, to add local flair to the space. Some of Kane’s work will include an octopus painting on the exterior of the building, and hand-painted oyster wallpaper in the restrooms.

Stemming from Moffett’s upbringing along the New England seashore, the restaurant is a nod to both his past and present. The name N.C Red combines his love for his adopted home of North Carolina with Rhode Island’s state bird, the Rhode Island Red Rooster. Moffett plans to continue expanding in Charlotte with a fifth restaurant, Bao + Broth, opening later this spring. The restaurant will be located within the forthcoming Optimist Hall with executive Chef Larry Schreiber at the helm.

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Apr 4, 2019

Teen Plastic Surgery: How Ethical Is It?

As advancements continue to be made to plastic surgery, it becomes more and more attractive to potential patients. It's no wonder that the number of plastic and cosmetic surgeries across the United States continues to rise. Adults are receiving these surgeries at a record level, but they aren’t the only ones. Teens and young adults are also receiving plastic surgeries, which has drawn the ire of certain groups. Some argue that teens are too young to fully understand the risks and dangers of plastic surgery. This begs the question, exactly how ethical is teen plastic surgery?

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The biggest gripe people have with teen plastic surgery is the competency of the teen. Are they old enough to fully understand what they are undertaking? Are they old enough to fully understand both the risks and benefits of the surgery, as well as everything that is going to take place? There’s a reason why minors are typically barred by U.S law from entering things such as contracts, as the vast majority of minors lack the competency to make their own decisions when it comes to matters this big. Plastic surgery is something very serious and could forever change your life, and if a teen is unable to fully grasp its severity then it is a major issue.

Physical Maturity

Another major issue surrounding plastic surgery is the physical development and maturity of the teen. Some physical deformities that people seek to correct will either go away over time or will simply be grown out of. In addition, what a teen may consider as a major physical detriment may actually be not that important or serious once the patient has grown up or maturity. For example, a teen probably shouldn’t undergo breast augmentation surgery if they are not fully grown yet. Although teens may want to have any deformity or scars removed in their teen years in order to avoid things such as bullying, it may be best to wait until they are older and more physically and emotionally mature.

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Parents’ Involvement

The involvement of parents in a teen plastic surgery case is another major issue that people have with the ethics of teen plastic surgery. Is the plastic surgery actually something that the teen wants, or is it something that the parent wants? Are the parents pressuring the teen into getting the surgery? On the flipside, if the parents are unsupportive of the surgery then it could create a potential parent-child rift. Unless plastic surgery for the teen is something that both the teen and parent can fully agree upon then it could cause major issues for the family.

Post Operation

Other major problems could stem from teen plastic surgery. It's no secret that teens and young people often have a feeling of invincibility. These people also don’t like spending extended periods resting or out of commission, something that could lead to some problems during post-op recovery. Teens may lack the attitude or discipline to follow the post-operation plan that the surgeon typically gives, something that could raise the risk of surgery and be potentially dangerous to the patient.

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Apr 2, 2019

How To Cook Chicken Thighs In An Air Fryer

If you haven't already hopped on the air fryer bandwagon, you better get with it! I have had one for about 6 months now, and use it every day, sometimes even a few times a day. It really is a very versatile kitchen appliance that every home cook needs. I recently decided to try some boneless, skinless chicken thighs in the air fryer for the first time. Normally I grill them either on my cast iron grill pan or the outdoor gas grill. I didn't feel like dealing with the pollen outside so I wanted to see how the air fryer would work.

I started with one package of boneless, skinless chicken thighs, fresh lime, and an assortment of dried seasonings. I simply washed the chicken with the fresh lime, and then rinsed and patted dry. I seasoned to my liking with my go-to spices. I also recently discovered Trader Joe's chili lime seasoning, and it has become a new must-have. If you are located near Trader Joe's, you have to grab a bottle!

After my chicken is seasoned, I set it aside for a bit while I heat the air fryer to 400° for five minutes. You can lightly spritz your chicken with olive oil if you are worried about them sticking to the basket, but I didn't have any issues. Place chicken in fryer basket according to how many you can fit for them to lay flat. Cook for 7 minutes, and flip. Cook for an additional 5-7 minutes or until nicely brown. They come out super juicy and perfectly cooked! This was so much easier than using the grill.

Chicken thighs are so versatile and can be served with a variety of side dishes, or on top of a salad. We have been eating lower carb meals lately, so I threw together some delicious vegetable fried "rice" (riced cauliflower). What a tasty combination!

Don't forget to grab this chili lime seasoning from Trader Joe's. It's only $1.99 so I will be grabbing a few extra to stock up.

Be sure to check out these other recipes:

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