Saturday, December 24, 2011

Dallas/Fort Worth, Part II: Fuzzy's, Gloria's and Lone Star Bakery

Read Part I of my Dallas/Fort Worth Post here

Our Sunday in Fort Worth started with some final packing at Kerry's apartment followed by lunch at Fuzzy's.

What: Fuzzy’s Taco Shop
Where: 2917 West Berry Street, Fort Worth, TX
Honeys Heart: Queso and chips 

Fuzzy’s is my Uncle Steve’s favorite restaurant in Fort Worth. It’s a local chain with locations throughout Texas and in neighboring states. They serve great, quick tex-mex with a focus on tacos.

Now here’s a sad story, folks. I had a bit of the flu the night before, so in addition to not being able to go out to the bars with my cousins on Saturday night, I also had to take it easy with the food on Sunday. I know. It was the worst. I’m still mad about it. But anyway, I had to order with my stomach in mind, which is why I went with the ground beef tacos.

You know I would have rather had something else… but I had to go neutral. And the ground beef tacos were pretty good. Love that Fuzzy’s makes their tacos special by topping them with feta and garlic sauce in addition to the usual suspects. 

But what I liked best (despite the fact that I limited myself to four or five chips for my stomach’s sake) was Fuzzy’s queso with chips. This queso was unusual for me because it’s made with white cheddar. Yum! Sorry, didn't get a pic.

Other choices included Fuzzy’s grilled sandwich with fried potatoes (ordered by Justin) and the nachos (Kerry’s favorite).

After lunch, we spent the afternoon at Fort Worth Zoo.

Fort Worth Zoo has been frequently recognized as one of the nation's best small zoos. We all thought the exhibits were very well done and, at least when we visited, the place was immaculate. Definitely a must-see if you're in the area.

And for dinner that night: Gloria’s!

What: Gloria’s
Where: 2600 W Seventh St. # 175, Fort Worth, TX
Honeys Heart: Pupusas

Gloria’s is my aunt’s favorite restaurant. They serve Salvadorian food as well as Mexican and Tex-Mex food and, like Fuzzy's, are also a local chain. 

I first introduced my parents to pupusas, yucca and fried plantains in DC, and since my mom loved all three, I wasn’t surprised that she decided to go for Gloria’s  Sampler Platter which features all of the above plus beans, black rice, and a tamale. I chose the same.

My mom and I both loved the pupusas. They were filled with cheese and pork and were just crispy on the outside (the ideal since so one likes a soggy pupusa). The yucca and plaintains were good as well. I have to say that I was a bit disappointed in the tamale. These tamales were wrapped in banana leaves instead of corn husks so they didn’t have as much of that corn-y flavor (which I love) as other tamales. Oh well.

Kerry ordered Churrasco Tipico, a plate with grilled churrasco sirloin steak with chimichurri sauce, Argentinean sausage, plantains, black beans and rice.

My aunt ordered Pechuga de Pollomarinated, grilled chicken breast.

And Gilma, Kerry's future mother-in-law ordered Chicken Flautas. Yum!

On Monday, before Kerry and my aunt dropped us off at the airport, we stopped by Lone Star bakery for some desserts because really, you can’t travel with my mom and NOT get something sweet.

What: Texas Star Bakery
Where: 499 West Harwood Road, Hurst, TX
Honeys Heart: Pumpkin Spice Cupcake

Texas Star Bakery is your classic old school bakery. None of the walls are painted pink, no one’s wearing a cute little apron, and for sure, no one’s been on Cupcake Wars.

But in my mind, that’s fine as long as the pastries are good.

My mom, sister and aunt picked out a few cupcakes while I went with a gingerbread cookie (they're my favorite) and Kerry chose a frosting and chocolate chip cookie sandwich.

You know Mrs. Field’s? They serve these little chocolate cookie cups with frosting on the top. I was obsessed with them when I was younger. Like, I refused to leave the mall without a little bag of five of them (because you had to order in increments of five, duh.) Anyway, Kerry’s cookie sandwich brought back delicious memories of those little guys. My gingerbread cookie was good too.

But the clear favorite was the pumpkin-spice cupcake with cinnamon cream cheese frosting. The cake was very moist and the frosting not-too-sweet. Good choice, Mom!

And then it was off to the airport! Thanks for a great weekend Kerry and Auntie Kathy!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Dallas/Fort Worth, TX: North Main BBQ and The Stockyards

Last Saturday, my cousin Kerry graduated from TCU (congrats, cuz!), so my mom, sister and I flew out to Dallas/Fort Worth to help celebrate.

Me, Sister and Kerry
You’ll remember that I gained like 10 pounds during my trip to Austin, TX because the food was so good, but I wasn’t sure if I could expect the same culinary prowess in Fort Worth.

While Dallas/Fort Worth has about every chain restaurant you can think of (Joe's Crab Shack, Macaroni Grill, Chili's, even In-n-Out!), my cousin managed to find quite a few tasty non-chains that she shared with us.

First up: North Main BBQ for Kerry’s graduation dinner!

What: North Main BBQ
Where: 406 N Main St, Euless
Honey’s Heart: Pork ribs

My aunt Kathy first heard of North Main BBQ on The Best Thing I Ever Ate, so she recommended it to Kerry and I’m glad Kerry was brave enough to try it. I mean, this is the kind of place you would never go into unless someone told you it was good. It’s kind of a dive. And by kind of, I mean it’s exactly that. Big time.

At North Main BBQ, you can order a sandwich (get a black plate) or you can do it right and eat from the buffet (get a white place).

The buffet is a meat-lovers paradise. Pork ribs, pulled pork, chicken, sausage, sliced brisket and chopped brisket.

The ribs were definitely my favorite but the pulled pork and chopped brisket were excellent as well. Flavorful and smoky and barely in need of any bbq sauce. Yum!

The buffet also features baked beans, potato salad, coleslaw and white bread by the slice.

The baked beans were more like chili beans than the sweet baked beans my mom and I loved in Kansas City, but good nonetheless and my sister, who is practically vegetarian, liked the potato salad and corn slaw.

That’s the thing though. Coleslaw is about as close as you’re going to get to fresh veggies or fruit at North Main. There is none of that there. Not even a measly iceburg lettuce salad. Which is fine, of course, but just good to know in advance.

We finished up our BBQ meal with some graduation cake!

That night, we headed to The Stockyards, Fort Worth's main tourist attraction.

The Stockyards have a bunch of restaurants and bars, including Billy Bob's, the world's largest honky tonk. 

This is just a photo of the dance floor. Billy Bob's also has an arcade, a stage, live bull riding, and 20 bar stations. It has a capacity of 6,000. That's one big honky tonk. 

 Apparently you can also buy beers to go at The Stockyards. 

This is very strange to me. It also means that The Stockyards turns into Fort Worth's version of the Las Vegas strip on the weekends.

There's also a bar where you can sit on saddles while you get wasted on $13 margaritas. 

I mean, that's not what we did. But you could... 

Stay tuned for Part II featuring tacos from Fuzzy's, the fabulous Fort Worth Zoo and Salvadoran food from Gloria's!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

DIY Happy Hour: Easy Moscow Mules

On Tuesday, Lauren and I hosted a GINGERbread Holiday Party.

What is a GINGERbread Holiday Party?

Well, it's a holiday party where you eat Thai Ginger chicken and gingersnap cupcakes, and decorate gingerbread cookies, and play Guess the Ginger Celebrity, and drink gingery cocktails, and (ideally) listen to Reba McEntire's Christmas album. Obvs.

You can read all about the party on Lauren's blog here.

I was in charge of cocktails, so I decided to make one of my favorites: Moscow Mules. Usually you make them with lime juice and simple syrup, but I ended up using organic limeade instead and it worked just fine- and made these drinks that much more of breeze to make.

Easy Moscow Mules: 

- 1 oz Vodka
- 1 oz Limeade
- Ginger Beer
- Lime Wedge
- Ice