Hello American Tandoor!

Hello American Tandoor!

Whenever I’m traveling, I’m always on the look out for some of the best cuisine that each city I visit has to offer. Just recently, I had the pleasure at dining at one of the best Indian restaurants in Tysons Corner, Virginia when I found American Tandoor.

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Located at the Tyson Corner Center mall is American Tandoor.  American Tandoor specializes in Indian cuisine with a twist. Their menu has traditional Indian cuisine as well as dishes that have the influences of contemporary American and Asian cuisine.

During my trip here, I started off with a lettuce wrap, an appetizer that is normally found in an Asian restaurant. Here at American Tandoor they give lettuce wraps a whole new look via their offering of Seekh Kebab Lettuce Wraps.

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The Seekh kebab lettuce wraps consist of two romain leaves topped with ground chicken kebabs and mango mayo. On the side is fresh mint yogurt for dipping. I have always loved lettuce wraps at Asian restaurants but American Tandoor’s version, simply blew me away! The large serving of tender ground chicken kebabs that was drizzled with mango mayo was pure perfection. The fresh mint yogurt gave it even more creamy pizazz.

Soon after the Seekh kebab lettuce wraps, I tried another fusion dish here via the Singapore noodles.

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The Singapore noodles have chicken, cabbage, scallions on top of rice vermicelli. It is a mild noodle dish with plenty of ingredients. My favorite was the large pieces of chicken. This Indo-Chinese dish is good for those looking to try American Tandoor’s take on a Asian classic with Indian influences.

My favorite dish of all on my visit here was their butter chicken.

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The word amazing does not even give this dish justice but it truly was amazing. The butter chicken consisted of tender pieces of chicken in mildy spiced creamy curry sauce. Known traditionally as Murgh Makani in Indian cuisine, this dish has now become my favorite Indian dish. Ever single ingredient of this dish from the yogurt and spice marinated chicken to the creamy red sauce made of butter, onions, ginger and tomatoes just came together to make the most pleasing main entree ever.

The butter chicken chicken on top of their basmati rice was awesome.

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I enjoyed the butter chicken with the basmati rice so much, the waiter even gave me basmati rice to go! It was that good.

I am very pleased to have dined at American Tandoor during my trip to Tysons Corner, Virginia. Their take on Indian cuisine with an American influence is simply superb and their butter chicken is the best. This restaurant goes in my book of one of the most memorable dining places I have visited on the East Coast.

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For more smiles, please see my recent Yelp review on American Tandoor.

Hello PF Chang’s Happy Hour!

Hello PF Chang’s Happy Hour!

Happy Friday! Today’s blog post is about a lot of happiness via PF Chang’s
happy hour specials. This popular chain restaurant’s happy hour menu is properly titled “Triple Happiness: Drinks, Dim Sum, Street Faire”

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First up on the triple happiness menu is their various drink offerings. I got Auntie Chang’s Frappe. It is a refreshing and tasty alcohol free drink with pineapple and orange juice blended with bananas and strawberries and a touch of honey.

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Aside from the various liquids and libations, PF Changs also has quite an extensive dim sum and street faire menu.

The crab wontons presentation was very nice. It is a pretty plate of six crispy wontons that is filled with crab meat, minced red and green bell peppers, green onions, ginger and garlic. I liked the accompanying spicy plum sauce. It’s a very sweet and sour type of dish with the crab wontons being the sweet and the plum sauce as the sour. 😉

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Chang’s lettuce wraps is one of the most popular appetizer dishes at PF Changs and a best seller at their happy hour. They have a chicken version and a vegetarian version. Since it’s a Lenten Friday, the vegetarian lettuce wraps were the choice for tonight. The lettuce toppings are wok seared tofu, mushrooms, green onions and water chesnuts on top of crispy rice noodles. I was happy to see a non-meat version and liked the tofu based dish.

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Another crowd favorite is their spring rolls. It’s two egg rolls filled with various vegetables and there is sweet and sour dipping sauce on the side. It’s a very traditional type of egg roll. Simple yet good.

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All of the above were great but my personal favorite is the crispy green beans. The green beans are coated with a tasty tempura batter. It’s served hot and fresh. There is a slightly spicy dipping sauce that accompanies the dish. It’s like eating crispy veggie fries.

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PF Chang’s Triple Happiness Happy Hour is definitely one that brought lots of happiness and plenty of smiles this Friday! 🙂 🙂 🙂

Hello Happy Valentine’s Day @ The Cheesecake Factory!

Hello Happy Valentine’s Day @ The Cheesecake Factory!

Happy Valentine’s Day to all the happy couples and happy singles in the world! I’m happy for my friends who have boyfriends/husbands who will do the sweetest things for them today. I’m happy knowing my friends are treated like queens. 🙂 One day I’ll be a queen too 😉 but in the meantime while this Hello Kitty waits for her own version of Dear Daniel to come into her life, I celebrate like a queen with my friends with a happy hearty dinner at The Cheesecake Factory

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My friends and I love The Cheesecake Factory! As many of my blog readers may have noticed, I’ve spent many special occasions with friends here. Although, I’ve been here several times, I still get quite overwhelmed with their 26 page menu! Luckily whenever I go here with friends, I have the chance to try several of their savory and sweet eats. For today’s blog post, I’ll share little tidbits of some of those items.

From the small plates and appetizers menu, one of my friends got the Chicken and Mushroom Lettuce Wraps. I’ve always been a fan of lettuce wraps and I was quite curious to see how this dish would be at The Cheesecake Factory. Six pieces of crisp butter lettuce leaves was accompanied with a nice mix of diced chicken, mushrooms, green onion, ginger and garlic. I liked that they used shiitake mushrooms for their lettuce wraps. Shiitake mushrooms tend to give a more rich, hearty flavor to dishes and this is exactly what it did for this plate. There was a little bit too much oyster sauce on this dish though but it still made for a good appetizer/ entree. It was also nice to see that these lettuce wraps are part of The Cheesecake Factory’s skinnylicious menu for items less than 490 calories.

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One of the other items that my friends and I got to try today was their Crusted Chicken Romano dish. This dish has chicken breast coated with romano-parmesan cheese crust. It is paired with pasta topped with tomato sauce. The cheesy pieces of chicken and the long, angel hair noodles made for a nice pair! The noodles were soft and the chicken had good golden brown crisp. The tomato sauce on the pasta was perfectly light and not overwhelming.

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Another tasty dish for tonight was the Shepherd’s Pie. One of my friends always cooks Shepherd’s Pie for some of our dinner parties. When I saw this on The Cheesecake Factory menu, I knew we had to try it. The Cheesecake Factory version has ground beef, mushrooms, carrots, peas, zucchini and onions underneath a mashed potato-parmesan cheese crust. Tender ground beef, wonderfully soft mashed potatoes and tasty dabs of ginger made for a very hearty and saucy dish (and yes it is just as good as my friend’s homemade version.) 😉

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Although, I loved the various savory entrees, I made sure to make room for the sweet treats at the end. This is The Cheesecake Factory after all and is one of the sweetest days of the year 😉 and so cheesecake was a must. We definitely had a lot of cheesecake love for this dinner!

The first cheesecake we tried was Adam’s Peanut Butter Cup Fudge Ripple. Honestly, I feel like we should have saved this for last because this was the most intense of all the cheesecakes we tried. This cheesecake had swirls of caramel, peanut butter, butterfinger and Reese’s Peanut Butter. The sweet caramel comes out at first bite and then next up is the rich flavors of peanut butter and butterfinger. This one had a very bold sweet kick to it.

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I really liked our second cheesecake! We got the Craig’s Crazy Carrot Cake Cheesecake. It is carrot cake and cheesecake swirled together, topped with cream cheese icing and roasted almonds. It’s a combo of two of my favorite desserts, carrot cake and cheesecake and so it is not surprising that I would enjoy this. The carrot cake was soft and moist and the cheesecake was super creamy. I also liked the touch of almonds in the cream cheese icing.

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Cheesecake love continued with the Wild Blueberry White Chocolate Cheesecake. This one is the original cheesecake with wild blueberries. It is topped with white chocolate mousse. The original cheesecake had a nice smooth texture and the blueberries added good tart touch. Very simple but classically tasty.

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Last but not least for our cheesecake love sweet treats was the Lemon Raspberry Cream Cheesecake. This one consisted of raspberry vanilla cake, creamy lemon cheesecake, raspberry lady fingers and lemon mousse. I really liked the luscious lemon flavor and the slight hint of raspberry. It was from this cheesecake that I realized that my preference for cheesecakes are the fruity based ones versus the chocolate types.

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It was once again love at first bite at The Cheesecake Factory. Their cheesecakes continue to be my foodie crush. It was a very happy hearts day today filled with sweet and hearty eats, heartfelt conversations and lovely times with friends. I hope that all of you too had a very Happy Valentine’s Day full of smiles and love! Thanks for reading my Valentine’s Day blog post. I heart all my blog readers! You all make my heart happy when you take the time to read my happy little blog. ❤️