Foodie Friday!

Via Napoli, Walt Disney World Resort Orlando
(Photo: Liz Barrett)

It’s Friday, and we’ve covered some pretty heavy topics this week so far. Why not take a break and enjoy one of my favorite topics–food! For years you’ve known me as the girl who’s crazy about pizza. Several of you have even seen my love of pizza in action while touring pizzerias in cities near and far (I’m not ashamed!). Here’s the thing, though. I’m not just about the pizza. I’m an equal opportunity foodie. Here’s a little secret…when I’m visiting a city to try the pizza, I’ll almost always carve out some time for three or four other types of restaurants, too. There are so many great chefs and inspiring dishes out there; I just can’t resist.


I encourage you to check out a variety of restaurants and see what they’re doing. You could get a really cool salad idea from a Thai restaurant, a dessert idea from a Greek place, or dozens of appetizer ideas from a tapas restaurant. The ideas are everywhere! And speaking of ideas, I want to share a few of the memorable dishes I’ve seen (OK, eaten) at pizzerias and other restaurants recently.

The photo in the upper left corner is a dessert from Via Napoli inside Walt Disney World Resort, Orlando, called Zeppole di Caterina–ricotta cheese fritters served with whipped cream and chocolate sauce (for some reason, I’m a sucker for anything served in a paper cone).

This is a chicken lime soup that I got in Uxmal, Mexico. I’ve never had anything quite like it. It seems like it would be simple to recreate, with chicken stock, chicken and lots of fresh lime juice. For someone who loves lime, like I do, I loved it! If you ever run soup specials, this is one to try.

The food I remember most fondly from Barcelona, is pan con tomate. This simple tapa of bread with tomato is served at nearly every restaurant in Barcelona, and I ordered it at just about every one of them! However, there was something different about how they served it at Arola, one of the restaurants inside the Hotel Arts Barcelona. It arrived at the table deconstructed, and I had the opportunity to “make” the tapa myself, rubbing the garlic into the fresh baguette, crushing the tomatoes into the perfectly crusty bread, drizzling my preferred amount of extra-virgin olive oil, and adding a dash of salt on top. There was something so cool about being able to create it myself, and it’s a memory that has always stayed with me.

The first time I tasted garlic knots, it was infatuation at first bite. So you can imagine my delight when I saw the words, “Wood-Fired Garlic Knot” on the menu at Milo & Olive in Santa Monica, California. And when our server told us that the garlic knot (yes, one garlic knot) could take 20 minutes to bake, I knew that something amazing was about to happen. Let me tell you, it was worth the wait. It arrived to the table larger than a softball, covered with olive oil, and filled–and I do mean packed–with roasted garlic cloves!

What dishes have inspired you lately? Let me know in the comments section below.