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Roasted Shrimp and Broccoli

Recipe: Cooking Light, Hannah Klinger 2011


5 cups Broccoli

2 tablespoons grated lemon rind, divided

(*I used lemon zest)

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon salt, divided

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided

1 1/2 pounds peeled and deveined large shrimp

Cooking spray

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper (I opted not to use this ingredient)


Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Cook broccoli in boiling water for 1 minute. Drain and plunge into ice water. Drain.

Combine 1 1/2 teaspoons rind (or zest), juice, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper in a medium bowl. Add shrimp and toss to combine.

Arrange broccoli and shrimp in a single layer on a jelly-roll pan coated with cooking spray (though I just used a sheet pan with parchment paper).

Bake at 425 degrees for 8 minutes or until shrimp are done.

Combine oil, remaining rind (or zest), salt, black pepper and crushed red pepper in a large bowl. Add broccoli and shrimp and toss to combine.

Serve with brown rice.

Check out my Facebook Page, Your Next Great Dish and my Blog at www.yournextgreatdish.com.

Little House of Pancakes 807 East Parkway | Gatlinburg, TN

This is our favorite “pancake house” in the Gatlinburg area. 

It’s family owned and operated by Wanda Clemens and has been for the last 22 years. Wanda’s daughters worked at the restaurant when they were 9 and 12 seating customers. Our favorite server, Amy, has been there 14 years.

The food is consistently delicious, fresh and hot! Whether you’re in the mood for pancakes, eggs, country fried steak, biscuits, toast, or anything else breakfast, this is the place to visit. 

Our recent visit I ordered the #6 (country fried steak and eggs. I made a few substitutions since I don’t eat eggs. It was fantastic. I would definitely order it again. 

My husband ordered the #4 (city ham and eggs). Be sure when you’re making the ham selections on the menu, that you know the difference. The city has is your typical ham but the country ham, it’s a salty ham. 

The service is always great and fast! If there’s not a wait, and you’re in a hurry, you can be in and out in no time. The coffee cups are huge! The restaurant is always clean! It’s a great place! 

Oh, and there’s ample free parking! 

Come by and see Amy. Be sure to call first. They’re open limited hours. 

9/28/17Bravo! Cucina Italiana

106 Major Reynolds Place | Knoxville, TN 37919

When I called Bravo! to make reservations for two on the 28th, I had the pleasure of speaking with Monx. He was super friendly and asked if anyone in our party was celebrating an event. 
When we arrived we were greeted by none other than Monx and two Hostesses. I have to say, these three are perfect for their positions because they’re the first point of contact. They were highly professional appearance and friendly attitude. 

We we’re seated in an open corner (I don’t think there’s a bad seat in the restaurant) and we’re served by Katie. 

We ordered Unsweetened Iced Tea ($2.99 each) and, as an appetizer, I ordered the Lobster Bisque (al a carte at $5.99, or $5.59 as an add-on to an entree). 

For our main courses, I let Chef Travis make my selection for me. He chose the Lobster Ravioli Alla Vodka (sautéed shrimp, tomato cream, pesto bread crumbs) for $18.99. Though it wasn’t on the menu, mine also had blistered grape tomatoes which was a nice addition. It was really delicious and something I would not have ordered for myself. I’m glad he made this selection. I would definitely order this again! 

My husband opted for the Spaghettini + Meatballs (house made beef and pork meatballs and marinara) for $15.99. He said it was also great and full of flavor. The meatballs were huge! 

For dessert I had a cup of coffee $2.99 and Tiramisu $6.99 (ladyfingers soaked in coffee liquor, creamy mascarpone filling and cocoa powder). I definitely enjoyed this dessert and have to say it was the best Tiramisu I have ever had. 

 Our server offered us Warm Chocolate Cake or Tiramisu for a dessert option. I asked if those were the selections and she said yes. On the restaurant’s online menu, I saw four selections. Tiramisu, Warm Chocolate Cake (rich chocolate cake with a molten lava center and vanilla bean gelato), Crème Brulee (vanilla bean custard with a caramelized sugar crust) or Caramel Mascarpone Cheesecake (crème anglaise, caramel sauce and mascarpone cream). 

Having seen these options post visit, I am disappointed. I thought I overheard a server behind us offer Crème Brulee to his table but I wasn’t sure. This is why I asked our server about the dessert options. Perhaps they ran out. I will have to make sure I order dessert with our main courses the next time so I don’t miss the opportunity to try it.

They have multiple locations so, if there’s one in your area, I would highly recommend visiting. 

They have locations in: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Wisconsin. 




Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies
Tastes Better From Scratch (www.tastesbetterfromscratch.com) – Lauren Allen
Adapted from Cooks Illustrated and Our Best Bites

These are the best chocolate chip cookies I have ever had!

2 cups + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 tablespoons butter (1 1/2 sticks) melted and cooled until warm
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg + 1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet, or milk chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325°.
In medium bowl, mix together flour salt and baking soda. In a separate, large mixing bowl, beat the butter, granulated sugar and brown sugars together with an electric mixer until well blended.
Add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla. Stir in the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Gently stir in the chocolate chips. The dough will be soft.
Gently scoop dough into balls and place on a cookie sheet. Bake 12-15 minutes. Store in an airtight container.


IMG_7294Mini Omelettes
Makes 24


12 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 – 1 cup Colby jack cheese, shredded (or your cheese of choice)

Add-Ins: (options)

Green Onion, finely diced
Yellow Onion, finely diced
Red Bell Pepper, finely diced
Green Bell Pepper, finely diced
Orange Bell Pepper, finely diced
Yellow Bell Pepper, finely diced
Spinach, fresh (chiffonade)
Baby Portobello Mushrooms, diced (best if sautéed first to bring out the woody flavor)
Cherry Tomatoes, diced


Preheat oven to 350°.

Spray the mini cupcake tin with a flour-based cooking spray and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, combine eggs, salt and pepper. Lightly whisk and pour into mini cupcake tin until 3/4 full. Do not overfill. Gently add your selected ingredients to each egg mixture. Finally, sprinkle about 1/2 teaspoon cheese on top of each mini omelette.

Bake for 20 minutes on the middle rack of oven.

Remove each mini omelette using a tablespoon by rounding them out and place on a cooling rack to cool for approximately 5 minutes.

Skinny Mini Omelettes:

In place of eggs, use a liquid egg white product.

Taking a Break 

I had shoulder surgery on Tuesday, June 6th and will be back posting as soon as I can! 

 After a friend suggested this restaurant I did a little investigating. She said that they get fresh seafood flown in daily. This piqued my interest because my husband loves grouper and we were going to be celebrating a special occasion – our 16th wedding anniversary. Of course I wanted to do something very special for my husband and this sounded like it may be it.

I called and spoke with Matthew Barnes, the Manager and he confirmed this. He also said there would be no problem ordering in the group for our upcoming dinner. I was so excited! I reserved a table on the OpenTable app and, two days prior to our dinner, I called to confirm with Matthew that he was able to locate, and secure fresh grouper for our dinner that evening. He said that my husband could choose the preparation when we arrived.

Upon arriving for our reservation, I noticed that they also have outdoor seating which would be great on a slightly cooler evening and if one was not celebrating a special occasion. Also, the interior is nicely decorated. We were seated promptly at a booth and almost immediately were greeted by our server Jack. I selected a glass of Veramonte, a Sauvignon Blanc from Chile. It was delicious and I was tempted to have a second glass. I would highly recommend this selection from their expansive wine list.

We were served a half loaf of a crusty, hard bread. It was delicious but quite a bit too tough. Because of the crustiness of the bread it made a mess as you cut into it for bite size portions. Perhaps slicing it first would be the better option for diners. However, the butter was soft and easily spreadable.
As my husband looked over the menu, I informed him that his main course had been selected and he would be selecting the preparation for fresh, flown in that morning, grouper. My husband was pleasantly surprised and chose to have his grouper broiled with garlic butter. He also chose the Market Fresh Vegetables and Garlic Potato Wedges.
I selected the Crab Cakes for an appetizer (which were two crab cakes over a spicy lemon remoulade). For my main course, I selected the 12 ounce ribeye (a thick, marbled, boneless ribeye) and added Oscar-style (traditionally hollandaise but I opted on béarnaise with the lump crab). I also chose the Fresh Market Vegetables and opted for the White Cheddar Mashed Potatoes as my sides.

The appetizer arrived and I was very pleasantly surprised at the crab cakes. They were large in size and, upon my first bite; I discovered it was loaded with crab and not a lot of filler. The spicy lemon remoulade was absolutely amazing. There was just the right amount under each crab cake to get the flavor to accompany the crab cake. I would highly recommend adding one order per person upon your visit.

When our meal arrived I was very hopeful that the remainder of our meal would be as awesome. We were not disappointed. My husband thoroughly enjoyed his grouper and sides. He said it was the second best grouper he’s ever had. We have gone on coastal vacations and not been able to find grouper for him. So, not only was I happy the restaurant was able to secure some for his meal but I am also glad that it was prepared properly and to his liking. He said that his vegetables were cooked perfectly al dente and he could not stop raving about the Garlic Potato Wedges. Of course, this meant that I had to try one of the potatoes. Wow, they seemed lightly infused with garlic. The flavor was so amazing that, when our server, Jack, came back to check in on the quality and taste of our food. I asked him if he knew what made those potatoes so special. He said that he was not sure but that he would ask the kitchen staff. He returned to inform us that they were flash fried in garlic oil. Wow, wow! These were amazing and I would definitely order this next time as one of my sides.

My steak – it was a great steak. I would have preferred if the ribeye had been trimmed of some of the marbling on the edge of the steak. I expect a ribeye to have fat running through it but it would have been better, presentation wise, to have trimmed the edge trimmed before serving. My steak was cooked to perfection, a perfect medium, as requested. The Oscar-style was delicious and loaded with lump crab and was topped, of course, with fresh asparagus tips. I highly recommend their ribeye steak Oscar-style.

Our entire meal was amazing! Then there was dessert…

My husband was too full to order dessert but, as a Food Writer, I feel it’s important to always order an appetizer, a main course and a dessert. Since I would be enjoying dessert alone, and my husband doesn’t care for Crème Brulée, I knew I had to order it when I saw it on the menu.

I ordered the Berry Crème Brulée (their menu says, “Traditional custard served chilled. Topped with caramelized sugar and a mixed berry compote. Accompanied by fresh mint and a housemade shortbread cookie dusted with powdered sugar.) I was so excited to try this Crème Brulée!

When the Crème Brulée arrived, it was not what I pictured in my mind based on the menu description. Don’t get me wrong, it seemed to have all of the components mentioned. However, I guess I thought the shortbread cookie would be like a decorative piece of cookie, but it practically covered the entire Brulée. The presentation, for me, was a visual letdown because it covered almost all of the best part. The best part of any Crème Brulée, you know, is that the perfectly browned, caramelized sugar you should hear when you tap it with your spoon. Yeah, that didn’t happen!

Once I removed the shortbread cookie, which I didn’t even taste, in the center of the Brulée was the mixed berry compote. I also didn’t get a chance to taste this either. The Brulée itself barely had any color on it but that wasn’t what actually infuriated me as a Food Writer. Now, their own menu states that this dessert is “a Traditional custard served chilled.” This dessert was nothing less than a hot mess. Literally! This Crème Brulée not only didn’t have the proper setting time required to chill but it was warm and literally was horrible. I took one bite and called the server over. I said that the dessert was not executed properly and asked for him to replace it with the Dessert Trio. I had bigger hopes for these three desserts.

When the ‘replacement’ dessert arrived the trio of desserts was stunning. They were larger portions than I was expecting and they all looked great. The Dessert Trio, as described by their menu, “is White Chocolate Bread Pudding, Coconut Key Lime Cheesecake and Dolly’s Triple Chocolate Cake.”
All three of these desserts were absolutely amazing but, the one that hit the home run for me, was the White Chocolate Bread Pudding. It was the best bread pudding I have ever had, period. I would definitely order this again over the other two selections, and definitely would never order the Crème Brulée here again. But the other desserts were very good.

I feel that I needed to call out the Pastry Chef, or whoever actually pulled the Crème Brulée dessert and put it together to be served to me. This was truly inexcusable and that item should have been removed from the menu the rest of the evening. Was this their “deconstructed” version of this traditional classic?
Upon review of the final bill, I noticed that the Crème Brulée had been removed from our bill and we were not charged with The Dessert Trio. This was a thoughtful gesture considering what I will forever call my Crème Brulée experience.

Overall, this restaurant is a MUST VISIT! The next time I am in the area, I will definitely return for dinner. I want so thank the Manager, Matthew Barnes for bringing in the grouper for this special occasion. It was a success!
During our visit we also chatted with the Front of House Manager, Hunter Evett, who was also helpful.

Visit Bluewater Grille at 224 Broad Street, Chattanooga, TN 37402 and don’t forget to reserve your seat using the OpenTable app. It’s fast and convenient. You can visit their menu, and obtain additional information on their website at www.bluewaterchattanooga.com.

Out of the current three Knoxville-area First Watch locations, this one is my least favorite. There doesn’t appear to be quite the décor that the other two locations have and the waiting area appears smaller than the other locations.
I used the NoWait app to reserve our space in line because First Watch always seems to have a wait, especially during peak breakfast times. Upon arriving for our breakfast, we approached the Hostess stand and checked in. The wait to be seated was less than 5 minutes because a two-top table was available.

Once seated it took about 10 minutes for our server Michelle to come over and take our order. However, she acknowledged us twice and said that she would be right with us. This cured my biggest pet peeve as a diner. I hate to be seated and wait without any acknowledgement.

Michelle took my order of Morning Meditation (which is the only juice from the Fresh Juice Bar I had not yet tried). I ordered their coffee which, in this Food Writers opinion, is the best local restaurant coffee out there. My husband ordered the Herbal Tea (which provides an assortment of herbal teas).
Upon Michelle taking our order, I opted for the BLTE (a BLT with two over-hard, cage-free eggs); I opted NOT to get the eggs) and a side of hardwood smoked bacon to be added to the BLT. Their full side of bacon is four slices. The BLTE is served with lightly-dressed organic greens or a cup of hot soup. I opted for the lightly-dressed organic greens and added a side of fresh, seasoned potatoes.

My husband ordered The Traditional which seems to be his go to if it’s not their French Toast. The Traditional is served with two fresh cage-free eggs any style with your choice of grilled ham steak, thick-sliced bacon, turkey sausage or sausage links. It’s also served with whole grain Artisan toast, all-natural preserves and fresh, seasoned potatoes. My husband opted for the eggs over medium and four turkey sausage links.

Our meal seemed to take longer than our usual wait time but this location was busy that morning. From our seats, we could see into the kitchen and the food did not sit in the window. As soon as a table’s order was ready, it was gone. Their kitchen staff, including any expediters, really works like a well-oiled machine. I can say this of all the First Watch locations. Our food is always served hot and fresh. I had to remind Michelle that I ordered the juice and she brought it immediately. I thought the Morning Meditation was good but the Kale Tonic remains my all-time favorite. It’s sweeter than the others and it’s just perfect for my palate.

I have to say that, upon inspection of my BLTE (minus the E); for once a meal at First Watch displeased me. I mean, First Watch is our favorite breakfast restaurant and I was sad. I first noticed the “side salad” on my plate. Okay, so maybe the lightly-dressed organic greens were not exactly what I was expecting. Maybe they had me a BLT I don’t know but the amount of greens that were served was actually quite large. In my opinion, they were just slightly too underdressed for me and I wished I had asked for a little more dressing to toss over them.
The BLT… This is where they went wrong, all wrong! I have to be honest though to be fair to First Watch. I am a lover of bacon! When I make BLTs at home in my own kitchen, for two, I use a pound and a half of bacon for four BLTs. That’s a lot of bacon! So, when I opened up my BLT, and removed more of the lightly-dressed organic greens that were used as “lettuce,” you could say that I was shocked at the lack of bacon. Clearly the first thing I knew was that the side of bacon that I ordered was definitely not added to the BLT. I alerted Michelle to my missing bacon and a few minutes later it was delivered.

Between both halves of the BLT, there were a total of three and a half slices of bacon. If the side of bacon had been added, I should have received 8 slices of bacon. I know this because I asked the General Manager Chad Chappelow, half way through my meal, how many pieces of bacon I should have expected on my BLT before adding the side of bacon. Perhaps if the egg were on the BLT, four pieces of bacon would have been sufficient, even without the extra side. In the end, I removed the greens from the BLT and added the side of bacon and it was great. Their Artisan bread is amazing and is always toasted perfectly.

My husband had no issues with his breakfast and he enjoyed as usual.

In the end, Michelle took $2.00 off of our check for the missing bacon, which was delivered and I would have not asked for a discount but it was a nice thing to do in regard to customer satisfaction. The service was good, not great, but good. I think I may know the reason for this as well. It seemed that Michelle had our table and then one or two other tables around the corner from where we were seated. She was always moving but sometimes we didn’t see her. I definitely do not think she was lacking in her duties as a server but, for whatever reason, and this is not typical for this time of morning (it was about 8:15) her tables seemed to be split up. I can’t fault her for this, as I have been a server as well and understand that it’s tough when your tables are split up. This makes it very tough for any server. Michelle was a good server though and very polite.

I would still recommend this First Watch location but make sure, if you order the BLTE, you can decide if you need to add the extra order of bacon and opt in, or out for the greens. I would definitely order it without the “lettuce/greens” and add bacon; still holding the eggs.

Everyone is friendly and helpful! Come in and see them for your next breakfast or lunch. Hurry, their locations have limited serving times.

First Watch – Turkey Creek
11682 Parkside Drive, Knoxville, TN 37934

Their hours are 7 days a week from 7:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and they are closed Thanksgiving and Christmas Days.

This is, by far, my favorite First Watch location! I love that, when you enter, the dining room is bright and open! There’s also this really awesome Community Table (which may actually be in every location, but we only learned about it at this location because there was a wait). 

They also have a nice waiting area (though quite small considering their volume) where patrons are offered hot coffee (and tea I believe). 

As we entered, we were seated by Craig, a server who had provided us with excellent service recently. 

On this day I wanted to try something different. I opted for three selections from the specials board. I ordered The Tumeric Lemon Aid from the Juice Bar and the Croque Madam (minus the eggs) for my entree and added the Millionaire’s Bacon! 

I usually order the Kale Tonic but this time I wanted to try the new Juice on the menu. I thought it was very refreshing. I think I prefer the Kale Tonic but I didn’t dislike this juice at all. It was great! 

Let me tell you about the Millionaire’s Bacon… it’s described as “four slices of our signature hardwood smoked bacon baked with brown sugar, black pepper, and cayenne and a maple syrup drizzle.  OMG! Call it candies bacon if you will! So delicious! Make sure you try an order of this! No matter what! 

So, I don’t eat eggs, well, egg yolks. But I never order egg whites out so, since I ordered The Croque Madame* without eggs. When it arrived I have to say that, out of all of the menu items that I’ve ordered, this was the least ranked in presentation. However, having been to this location many times previously, I knew this was a fluke. After I lifted the top piece of bread off, it smelled, and looked amazing! Upon my first bite I was hooked! The ham had a great smoky flavor and was delicious. The bechamel sauce was “broken” but the flavor was there for sure. It was really great! I think there was a lot of bread for one sandwich but their breads are typically thick cut and amazing! 

*Croque Madame is smoked ham, tomato, Gruyere cheese and Dijonaise on grilled Artisan brioche. It’s served topped with bechamel sauce and two cage-free, sunny-side up eggs with fresh herbs). 

The staff, from the Host/Hostesses, servers and Manager are absolutely the friendliest! The food

At First Watch is incredible! Make sure to ask for the Manager, Joe, and tell him that Angela, of Your Next Great Dish, sent you! 

You can download the “No Wait” app to save your place in line. I highly recommend this. There is typically a small wait to be seated.