Weekend Foodie Warriors- Take 49!
Hello hello, again, Foodie Friends 🙂 Hope you had a great weekend! For this edition of Foodie Adventures, we #throwbacktuesday to when we drove-thru the Greenville Greek Festival, challenged ourselves to make some new Mexican-inspired Food Network recipes, and made non-dairy sour cream blueberry coffee cake!
34th Annual Greenville Greek Festival
With COVID-19, a lot around us has changed. It’s been tough to juggle working from home, kids going back to school, and trying not to go stir-crazy in quarantine for five months and holding.
So when we heard that the 34th Annual Greenville Greek Festival was still happening this weekend, after suffering the blow of so many other food festivals getting cancelled, we were elated at the thought of getting some amazing Greek food despite it all.
I attended the Greenville Greek Festival in person last year (my first time visiting, see our blog here for those details and pictures), and they had always offered a drive-thru option for those who couldn’t attend the festival itself. It must have been a no-brainer for them to not keep the in-person part of the festival to be safe, but still be able to spread the love with some drive-thru, homemade Greek food.
We were really impressed with their operation honestly. You know how Chick-fil-A has been expanding their ordering to two lanes to help cut down on traffic? Well the Greek Festival organizers must have been taking notes because we managed to get through two lanes and what was the equivalent of two city blocks in the span of 10-15 minutes and had our food hot and ready!
I think what really helped them this year was expanding their combination platters (see menus below) to account for people not being able to order certain items like the Dolomades (stuffed grape leaves) and Spanakopita (spinach and feta stuffed phyllo dough) separately. The first things they ran out of surprisingly were the pastries!
We were in line promptly at 11:15 am on their last day, Sunday (Aug. 30th), and by the time we got to ordering, all they had left were the Amygthalota (think the Greek version of what tastes like an Italian wedding cookie, but huge and shaped like a crescent moon), and the Kataifi (imagine all the ingredients of Baklava, but with shredded phyllo dough on top, in the shape of a swiss cake roll!), both of which we ordered.
Of course, I invited all the friends I could fit in a car on this trip, I mean, how else do you manage to order one of everything, and that’s happily what worked out menu wise too.
Jaime and I ordered a gyro and the Amygthalota to share and the Moussaka combination plate, my friend Madison got the Chicken combo plate, and my buddy Noah got the Pastichio combination with the Kataifi for dessert. Max just got a gyro but shared quite a few things off all our plates.
Everything was delicious!! We ended up cleaning our plates, every dish was so fresh, and you could tell it was handmade with a lot of love. Anyone who has never eaten Mediterranean or Greek food would do good to try this festival out and see how fantastic the food is!! We highly recommend it.
Food Network Night – Mexican Food
Lake Norman, NC
Whenever we go home to visit, Mom and I like to pick a new recipe and try it out to be adventurous! This weekend, we chose to make fish tacos with all the fixins based solely on recipes we found on Food Network – check out our results below!
First up to make was the side dish, an awesome take on Mexican Elote corn, or street corn for those who know it by that name instead. This dish, typically served as a Mexican street food, consists of a grilled corn cob, slathered with mayo, cotija cheese, paprika or chili powder, and lime juice for some extra zest. This recipe from Jeff Mauro at Food Network puts a spin on it by deconstructing the classic from the cob and adding a few extras, like beans, bacon, and charred scallions!
This is probably one of the best side salad dishes we’ve ever made, super easy and was such a crowd pleaser!!
Next up was the chipotle crema and tomatillo salsa to top off the shrimp tacos. We decided to make one crema like the recipe from chef Marcela here, and the other (right bowl) we made using vegan/non-dairy mayo and sour cream (from Follow your Heart)! To be honest, there wasn’t much taste difference between the two cremas, just that the one with the vegan mayo tasted a lot more tangy.
To make the tomatillo salsa, we whole roasted tomatillos and followed this recipe from Ree Drummond, which turned out delish! The shrimp we cooked in a little white wine, garlic, and lime juice, and added some paprika and a little chili powder for some added kick.
This was such fun to make and the whole family helped in putting this dinner together, so it was really satisfying to see and taste the end results.
Non-dairy Sour Cream Blueberry Coffeecake
What better way to use up the rest of the non-dairy sour cream than by making a coffee cake! I’ve been meaning to experiment with more non-dairy items like mayo and sour cream in my cooking and baking, so this was a perfect excuse to try it out.
We didn’t use my mom’s blueberry coffeecake recipe like we typically do, as we decided to bake this cake fairly late in the evening. This recipe was just as good though, which came from my favorite (and first) cookbook my mom gave me, the Good Housekeeping one I’ve had since I graduated.
There was just enough sour cream left to make this recipe! I think compared to my mom’s typical recipe, this came out slightly denser and maybe a little less moist, but taste wise, there was hardly a difference using the vegan sour cream and butter. We still kept the eggs in it though, so it wasn’t completely vegan, but it was 100% non-dairy!
They turned out looking gorgeous too! So happy with these for our first non-dairy sour cream baking attempt. We always like to make a new recipe for the first time exactly how the book lists it, so we may make more edits the next time we bake it.
So how was your weekend Foodie Friends? Who is your favorite Food Network celebrity chef for recipes? Sound out in the comments below to let us know your suggestions of what dishes to make or places we should visit next. As always, feel free to like, comment, & share 🤗