fish

100 Degrees

What a week! Last week was busy. First, we were having a new roof put on our house. So working from home and listening to the banging, clanging, pounding all day and all week was not what I’d call fun. Plus Portland got another heat wave. This time, 100 degrees several days in a row! Ouch. Too hot for me. But at least a few weeks ago we got a new AC, furnace and water heater installed!

Michael’s dad came to visit from Texas and he did not mind the weather. πŸ˜‰

Thursday after work we went to the Happy Valley food carts for dinner. It was 100 degrees out but we remembered they had an indoor beer garden and we kind of wondered if it would have AC…spoiler alert, it did not have AC. πŸ™ It was so so hot! A little too hot for my little guy so we didn’t stay long.

The last (and first) time we were at the Happy Valley food cart station was the weekend before Logan arrived! I was bummed when we arrived this time and the food cart I tried last time was gone. It was SO GOOD and I was planning on getting it again.

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Michael and I both got dinner from the E-San Thai cart. I got the Pad Prik Khing with tofu. It was good and spicy but nothing amazing. I’ve had better dishes at the E-San food cart that is downtown.

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I usually don’t choose tofu but I enjoyed it with the veggies. And of course, my beloved Boneyard IPA:

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I ate about half of my dinner and saved the rest for leftovers. Then we headed home to our air conditioned home! The beer garden was cool and they had a TON of really good beers and ciders on tap. I would have liked to hang around longer and check it out but it was not the day to do that. We’ll go back another time when the weather is a little more pleasant.

Saturday we had planned on going to Hood River for the day but since it was going to be 102 degrees we decided against it. It was just too hot for the baby. So we went out to breakfast to Sckavone’s instead. At 9:30am it was 80 degrees but really pleasant in the shade so we sat outside to enjoy the summer morning.

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I got a DELICIOUS iced coffee that really hit the spot (although I could have used a second one honestly). The three of us ended up getting the same thing for breakfast — the chorizo breakfast bowl. It was black beans, chorizo sausage, scrambled eggs, avocado, pico de gallo, and sour cream.

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It was really tasty and filling. We enjoyed our breakfast outside and then headed home where I went to the gym and the guys watched the Olympics in our air conditioned house.

Saturday we went to an early dinner at Jake’s. It’s a favorite of Michael’s and his dad’s. We went early to avoid the crowds since we were taking Logan with us. First time going to a “real” restaurant (as in, not a kid-friendly restaurant). We figured he’d be ok because most of the time when we take him to restaurants he either sleeps through the whole thing or there’s so much going on around that he’s quiet and just looks around. And he did really well this time, although he was a little more vocal and active this time (of course, right?) but at least he didn’t cry or make noise.

We shared the calamari appetizer (sorry the photo was blurry, I was feeding Logan a bottle while we ate it). And I got a glass of the Malbec. For dinner Michael got the salmon with green beans and potatoes; his dad got the blackened rockfish with zucchini; and here was mine:

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I went “light” and got the house salad with blue cheese and candied walnuts and a cup of the Dungeness Crab bisque (with crab sprinkled on top). It was all very delicious! I’m glad I got the small cup of the bisque, though, because it was VERY rich. I don’t know that I could have eaten more of it.

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Someone was getting a little antsy so I scarfed down the rest of my salad and then took him out of the carseat while the guys finished their dinners.

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He was super fascinated by the paper on the table. We skipped dessert and headed home after that. It was definitely time to get out of there. Overall he did great and didn’t make much noise but it was kind of stressful being at a restaurant that wasn’t fast food with a baby!

Calories in Sushi

Eating out is often difficult for me because my eyes get bigger than my stomach and I am easily tempted by the things that sounds good on the menu. When I know where I’m going out to eat, I will look up the menu online and pick what sounds the healthiest to me. I may not always choose that, but I like to have a game plan. My go-toΒ restaurantΒ “healthy” choice is usually the soup and salad combo; it’s a safe choice.

But with sushi, I don’t get that same anxiety about choosing the wrong thing. Part of the reason is that I think sushi is really healthy. IF you order the right things. The biggest tip for sushi: don’t order tempura! Deep frying anything immediately makes it not a healthy choice (even though the tempura is oh-so good).

I found a website recently with a chart for calories in sushi. The calories run from 50 calories to 700 calories. Just to give you a few examples:

Veggie Roll – 170 calories

Avocado Roll – 140 calories

Spicy Tuna Roll – 290 calories

Salmon Cucumber Roll – 230 calories

Sashimi is usually under 100 calories!

One of the good things about sushi restaurants? You are usually sharing the rolls with your friends! So you’re probably eating even less calories than you think. I rarely feel guilty about eating sushi because fish is so healthy and packed with omega-3 fatty acids.

A tip that I have for sushi restaurants is to get an appetizer first. The edamame (soy beans) lightly salted run around 100 calories. Miso soup is less than 100 calories for a small bowl. Both take the edge off the hunger. Also, if you’re not that skilled with chopsticks, it will take you foreverΒ to eat your sushi!

I recently met up with my cousin Anna for our monthly/bi-weekly-girl’s-night-out-happy-hour at Bara Sushi House. It’s in SE Portland on the trendy Clinton Street. I’ve been there for dinner at least three or four times and have always had a good meal there. Another bonus: I had a Groupon deal that covered a bulk of our dinner.

It was a Thursday evening after a gorgeous week in Portland with weather that was sunny and warm and a reminder of why I live in the Pacific NW. I wished that the sushi place had outdoor seating. I got there early and read some of my book while I waited for Anna to get there. I had a small cup of Miso soup while I waited for her to arrive.Β She arrived and ordered sake and I had a glass of dry chardonnay. We ordered some really tasty Β sushi rolls, some were ones I’ve never tried before.

We shared a Philly Roll (my favorite) and a Spicy Salmon Roll (Cucumber, kaiware, and yamagobo). Then we got two rolls that were more adventurous; the Tropical Punch was spicy as hell–as in my lips and mouth are burning spicy–but in a really good way. The Tropical Punch:Β Spicy albacore, house crab mix, mango and Thai chilies. And we got a Spider Roll (which was just two pieces):Β Fried soft-shell crab, house crab mix, tobiko, cucumber, avocado, yamagobo and kaiware.

We were both super happy with our choices and I felt like the calorie count was fairly decent. Miso Soup -50 calories; Spicy Salmon -330 calories; Tropical -297 calories; Spider Roll -317 calories for 4 pieces but I had 1 piece; Philly Roll -320 calories. Β So splitting all the sushi, how did I do on calories? I estimated 675. That isn’t too bad for a dinner out!

Whatever calories I saved by eating sushi I made up for at Pix for dessert! It’s a super cute, delicious dessert place just up the street from the sushi restaurant. Β We ordered the Amelie– it was creme brulee with a hint of orange, chocolate mousse with a crunchy chocolate outer glaze and caramelized hazelnuts.

Thank goodness we split it! It was rich and decadent and I absolutely loved the crunchy hazelnuts in it.

Splitting it was a good move; I think we each had about five bites before it was gone. Hopefully I didn’t do too much damage to my waistline with that little treat.

One last thing, I never step on the scale the day after eating sushi. Don’t torture yourself. That soy sauce will add a few pounds to anyone!

QUESTION: Are you a sushi fan? What do you usually order and how many calories are in it?