Create Cocktail Cakes with Cakes Under the Influence

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Cakes Under the Influence - Ann Again and again Reviews

I’m very happy to share with you what I think is a perfect host gift for this holiday season – Cakes Under The Influence.

Cakes Under the Influence - Ann Again and again Reviews

 

With four kits to choose from you are sure to find a selection that will fit the party mood. Each baking kit comes with different sets of cocktail cake molds and you can also add different molds to customize your kit along with cake mix specifically created to be mixed with alcohol to give your goodies a little kick ;-> Kits to choose from: Two Under The Influence (2-Pack), Friends and Family (6-Pack), Entertainer (12-Pack), Premium Baking and Serving (Baking Impresario).

I baked with Cakes Under the Influence Friends and Family kit. Here’s a slide show of my experience – my creation “White Russian Cakes”:

 

http://youtu.be/IgtF47E7_eQ

A sweet touch to any celebration Cakes Under the Influence kits are a perfect match for; a 21st birthday, a wedding shower/anniversary, New Years Eve parties, any occasion to enjoy a cocktail with a twist. It was so much fun to bake with this kit and I’m looking forward to the next celebration. (How does ‘Hey, it’s the weekend!’ sound? ;-> )

Visit their website for step-by-step video instructions on how to bake with their kits and for recipe inspiration with Cakes Under the Influence. Once you get that baking *spark* the creation ideas can be endless!

Visit Cakes Under the Influence.com

 

(*Disclosure: I was provided the Friends and Family kit to facilitate my review. My opinions are my own.)

Ultimate Dining Experience And Holiday Treat With Restaurant.com Gift Card

BUNDLE UP WITH RESTAURANT.COM’S HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE

DELICIOUS IDEAS FOR EVERY BUDGET!

 Restaurant.com Holiday Gift Guide - Ann Again and again Reviews

At Restaurant.com, the nation’s largest dining deals site, we love surprising our diners with fun ways to save.  This holiday season, we’ve handpicked delicious dining experiences and gift ideas for every budget and compiled them into an exclusive Restaurant.com Holiday Gift Guide.  Simply pair any Restaurant.com Gift Card with one of these gift bundle ideas below for the ultimate dining experience and holiday treat:

 

1.      The Movie Buff: For the movie-quoting, obsessed friend, surprise them with two tickets to a movie on their must-see “Oscar” list and a $25 Restaurant.com Gift Card. Enjoy a night of appetizers and plot-dissecting debates! Ready to splurge? Stop at the concession stand for some candy, drinks, and a jumbo popcorn to share! Create your own >

 

2.      The Workaholic: To help someone on your list find much needed tranquility, pair a $100 Restaurant.com Gift Card with soothing bath salts, lavender mist, and a face mask to create an affordable, at-home spa treatment. Ready to splurge? Add a spa gift card and make Dinner reservations for a nice, relaxing evening post-massage. Create your own >>

 

3.      The Wine Fanatic: Bring Napa Valley to every wine lover on your list! Pair their favorite wine with decadent cheeses, crackers, and of course chocolate. Then, cleanse their palate with some late night dessert and a $25 Restaurant.com Gift Card. Ready to splurge? Instead of dessert, make it dinner and BYOB at thousands of Restaurants nearby! Create your own >>

 

4.      The Romantic: Add some romance into your holiday with a $50 Restaurant.com Gift Card, bouquet of roses, some irresistible chocolate covered strawberries, and a candlelit dinner for two. Ready to splurge? Pick up some bubbly on the way home for a classy touch. Create your own >>

 

5.      The Theatre Lover: Add some dramatic flair to the holidays with two tickets to their must-see show and end the evening with our $100 Restaurant.com Gift Card – perfect for dinner and dessert. Ready to splurge? Buy them a memento from the show and two drinks during intermission! Create your own >>

 

Sweepstakes Giveaway Details: http://thedish.restaurant.com/holiday-bundle-up-giveaway
Five (5) lucky Facebook fans will have a chance to win one of the gifts featured in our gift guide every Wednesday beginning November 20, 2013 and ending December 18, 2013

 

 

(*Disclosure:  I am sharing this opportunity as a member of USFamilyGuide.com)

 

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Seven Bridges Winery – A Treat Found In Portland

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Seven Bridges Winery - Portland OR - Ann Again and again Reviews

Seven Bridges Winery - Ann Again and again Reviews

A delicious discovery in the world of Pacific Northwest wines happened practically in my own backyard… and I couldn’t be happier!  Seven Bridges is a top choice for reds and you can discover for yourself at their tasting room located in a surprising area, an industrial part of North Portland, close to the Rose Quarter.  Follow the little white “tastings” signs to Seven Bridges Winery.

The tasting room, located at 2303 N. Harding, Portland, OR  97227, is an oasis in an area full of train tracks, grain silos and electric power stations.  Once you enter past the decorative grape vine fence you find yourself in a cozy room that’s one part wine processing area and one part wine tasting room.  The scent of lovely reds is in the air and the first sip is oh-so-very tasty!   My husband Rob and I have been to the lovely Napa Valley, our own “The house that Pinot Noir Built” wine region – Willamette Valley, Oregon and yet the reds produced by Seven Bridges were the most consistently pleasing reds I’ve tasted.  I’m not normally a Merlot drinker however, their 2009 Merlot was a show stopper.  Full, smooth with just the right amount of sweetness.  Rob found their Equilibrium blend (Malbec/Cabernet Sauvignon) to be his favorite – for this visit anyway!

We were told that next weekend was crush and we were welcome to come by.  Here are some pics of the visit:

 

http://youtu.be/3T7GF_5W6vA

Seven Bridges focuses on Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Merlot and Sangiovese with their grapes coming from the state of Washington’s Columbia and Yakima valleys.    I encourage you to visit the Seven Bridges Winery tasting room which is open to the public on weekends from 1 – 5 pm.  www.sevenbridgeswinery.com .  Let me know what you think!

 

 

 

Food Should Taste Good – I Agree!

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Food Should Taste Good Snack Chips Review - Ann Again and again Reviews

Food Should Taste Good Review - Ann Again and again Reviews

Is there any clearer message from a product name than “Food Should Taste Good”?  I don’t think so.  And hey, I completely agree with them!

I am a crunchy, salty food craving girl so when I was given the opportunity to try chips from the company Food Should Taste Good I was more than happy to check out their taste.  My first thought wasn’t so much about the flavor as much as it was the sensation of eating a true food.  These aren’t highly processed chips, Food Should Taste Good has created chips from real food, using quality oils, and the taste is fantastic!

When it comes to processed foods I am very weary about what I allow in our cupboards.  Yes, my girls ask for the big name chips and puffs that turn your fingers a bright orange, but those just aren’t for me.  I don’t feel good when I eat things like that.  And what’s available in our home, for the most part, dictates what my children eat.  (My oldest is 15 so when she goes to the store with her friends I can only hope she makes healthy choices.  Teenagers!)

Food Should Taste Good has created delicious flavors:  Olive, Lime, Sweet Potato, MultiGrain, Blue Corn and Cheddar.  The MultiGrain has a light taste, with a heartiness that was perfect with the salsa I picked up at the Farmer’s Market.  For an ever-so-slightly sweet taste the Sweet Potato chip tastes good paired with a fruit salsa or your favorite fruit jam.  The Olive, with pieces of olive in each chip, was absolutely delicious with sun-dried tomato hummus.  So good!

Food Should Taste Good Review Ann Again and again Reviews

All natural, Gluten Free, certified vegan, no trans fats with very low sodium Food Should Taste Good chips are absolutely delicious.  I’m hooked!  You can find these chips at New Seasons, Target, Walmart – I saw them at Costco the other day!  The bigger the bag of these chips the better!  For more information visit:  http://www.foodshouldtastegood.com/  .

(*Disclosure:  I have received the products free of charge from Small Planet Foods for my review.  My opinions are truthfully my own.)

Grace Hightower & Coffees of Rwanda – "LOVE"

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Providing trade not aid to the people of Rwanda - Coffee of Grace

Providing trade not aid to the people of Rwanda - Coffee of Grace

“Rwanda needs trade not aid”.  These words by Rwanda’s President Kagame resonated with Grace Hightower and she went to work on what she could do to help the people and the beautiful land of Rwanda.  Please watch this video (link below) to learn more about Grace Hightower & Coffees of Rwanda – “LOVE“.   (A very lucky Ann Again and again Reviews reader will win bags of coffee made from Coffees of Rwanda.  Enter at the end of this post :-> )

 

Grace Hightower is a philanthropist, actress, singer and the wife of actor Robert De Niro.  Grace Hightower & Coffees of Rwanda was launched in 2013 with the mission of improving Rwandan livelihoods by marketing their products internationally.

Providing trade not aid to the people of Rwanda - Coffee of GraceGrace Hightower & Coffees of Rwanda have been featured on The View, FORTUNE, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Worth Magazine and more.  The coffee is available in 4 blends. From dark roast to light, with variations of chocolaty to citrus flavor notes.  These coffees are available at specialty stores including Whole Foods and on her site www.coffeeofgrace.com

To thrive on this planet I believe we must nurture, we must support, we must help each other in positive, peaceful ways.  I hope you enjoyed the video.  And if you choose to enter the giveaway, good luck! :->
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

(*I am sharing this information with my lovely readers because I believe in the message.  No compensation has been received.)

Nonni's Biscotti's THINaddictives – A Light and Lively Treat Plus A Giveaway!

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Ann Again and again Reviews Nonni's Biscotti's THINaddictives

The first time I tried a biscotti was decades ago when the coffee craze was hitting Portland.  I saw these tasty looking bars displayed in a pretty, tall glass on top of the pastry case and gave it a try.  I had no idea how crunchy, how dry they were and bit into the cookie without the necessary liquid dunking portion.  Not good.  Cookie crumble everywhere AND the flavor of the cookie doesn’t really release unless it’s moist.  My biscotti fail.  

Years later I tried using the proper dunking technique and enjoyed the taste of the cookie however, I’m not a soft food kind of person.   My husband is from the Chicago area and has a favorite sandwich that is completely dunked in sauce, oh wait – I think he calls it gravy, and the bread is so mushy I just can’t take it.  I’m not a fan of mushy food so I wasn’t sure how the latest version from Nonni’s Biscotti’s THINaddictives would go over for me, but I was willing to give it a try.

 Ann Again and again Reviews Nonni's Biscotti's THINaddictives

Here’s where they begin to win me over, they are thin.  Very thin slices of biscotti with pieces of raisin, or pistachio, or craisins that you can dunk in your favorite hot beverage if you like, but the flavor is nice and detectable even if you don’t dunk.  That works for me!

Ann Again and again Reviews Nonni's Biscotti's THINaddictives

Nonni’s Bicotti’s THINaddictives are sold in boxes that contain pairings of cookies in cellophane bags.  They are easy to transport in your purse for a quick treat however, they are delicate so if you don’t mind some cookie crumbles, just toss them in your bag!  100 calories per serving. If you like a bit of crunch with your treat this cookie is for you.  With flavor offerings of Cranberry/Almond, Pistachio/Almond, and Cinnamon/Raisin/Almond you are sure to find a flavor you’ll enjoy.  My favorite – this week anyway – is the Pistachio/Almond.  Slivers of pistachio with a delicate taste of almond, it’s delicious.  And this thin version of Nonni’s Biscotti pairs so perfectly with frozen Greek yogurt or ice cream it’s fantastic!  July is National Ice Cream Month ;->

Photo: July is National Ice Cream Month! Celebrate with a couple scoops and some THINaddictives on the side.What’s YOUR favorite ice cream flavor?

Nonni’s Biscotti’s THINaddictives is encouraging everyone to get fit this Summer and has a YouTube channel with exclusive insider tips on fun, accessible forms of fitness from exercise experts.  Check out their channel here.  Enjoy getting stronger and in shape then have a nice, tasty 100 calorie treat.  Sounds like a plan.

Here’s something else that sounds like a plan… How about a giveaway of 3 boxes of Nonni’s Biscotti’s THINaddictives?!  Yes!  Entry option below

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

(*Disclosure:  I was provided product for my review.  My opinions are truthfully my own.)

 

Trying The Deli Fried Chicken From Kroger Family Stores

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fried chicken

We loved our vacation at Black Butte Ranch in Central Oregon and didn’t want to leave.  We didn’t have a check-out time and stayed as long as we could.  That’s the good part.  The bad part was arriving home only to discover that we had cleaned out the refrigerator before we left and we were hungry and tired.  Oh boy.  My husband and I didn’t have the energy to cook after our long drive home, but going to one of the fast-food places in our neighborhood did not sound appealing at all.  Then I remembered my coupon from being a BzzAgent to try the deli fried chicken from Fred Meyer/Kroger.  Perfect!

I picked up an 8-piece ready-to-heat-and-eat chicken from our Freddy’s deli section, some coleslaw, chips and drinks and headed back home.

Deli Fried Chicken at The Kroger Co. Family of Stores

The weather was perfect for this summer evening so we ate outside, kind of extending our vacation vibe.  My husband Rob didn’t want to have his chicken heated up, but I did.  The chicken is fully cooked so you have a choice.  The coating was fun is hand-breaded in the store.  The tasty spices were a nice blend for the adults and not too zippy for our girls.  The meat was moist and there was plenty for our family of 4.  We had left overs and the container the fried chicken comes in makes it easy to snap the top back on and store in your refrigerator.  (Which made me happy because I knew the next day would be spent doing laundry.)

I was so pleased with my family’s positive response to Fred Meyer’s deli fried chicken.  I liked the quality and the taste and it was a perfect solution for feeding my family a healthy, and quick, meal in no time.

 

(*Disclosure:  I am a BzzAgent and was provided coupons to try Fred Meyer’s deli fried chicken, chips and soda.  My opinions are truthfully my own.)

 

Partying With Red Baron – And A Giveaway!

Ann Again and again Reviews Red Baron Pizza

When it comes to planning a party my girls always make sure pizza is on the list. My husband Rob is a terrific cook and loves to make home made pizza however, he wasn’t available for the girls End-Of-School year party so I needed to come up with something else. Red Baron has added delicious pizzas to their line-up – Classic Crust Hawaiian, Fire Baked Spicy Pepperoni and various tastes in their Deep Dish Singles. There was a flavor for everyone and the kids had a blast. Here’s a little peek at their party –

The Spicy Pepperoni was on a fire baked crust and the girls really enjoyed it. It wasn’t too spicy and had a nice amount of pepperoni. The Classic Crust Hawaiian had a nice blend of chewy dough with a very thin crispy layer. The combination of sweet pineapple and tender ham was a hit. That pizza went fast. You can find Red Baron pizzas in the frozen food aisle.

Time For A Giveaway!

Are you planning a summer party? Perhaps you’d like to add some Red Baron pizza to the table? If so, I have 2 coupons for Red Baron Pizzas – flavors the choice of the lucky winner. Enter below! :->

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

Filippo Berio Olive Oil – Tasty Alternative To Butter

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Ann Again and again Reviews Filippo Berio Olive Oil

Ann Again and again Reviews Filippo Berio Olive Oil

With the help of being a BzzAgent I was able to try Filippo Berio Extra Virgin Olive Oil recently and love the tasty results.  Butter is out!  (Sorry dear Husband ;-> ) and the healthier, tastier alternative is in – Filippo Berio Olive Oil.

I tried my hand at making a Fritatta.  It seemed like a dish that was good for those nights when you need to “use what you have on hand” and last night was one of those.  So here I go:

Fritatta w/ Bacon, Pepper, Mushrooms & Green Onions

6 Eggs

6 slices of Bacon

1 1/2 cups sliced Mushrooms

4 Green Onions

1 Sweet Yellow Pepper

6 oz. Shredded Cheese

1/4 c. non-fat Milk

Directions:

Cook your bacon.  (Microwave or stove top.  Which ever.)

Saute Mushrooms in Filippo Berio E.V. Olive Oil over medium heat.

Fritatta Recipe Featuring Filippo Berio Olive Oil - Ann Again and again Reviews

Once the mushrooms have a golden brown edge add chopped Green Onions and Pepper.  Chop your cooked Bacon and add that as well.  A dab of more Olive Oil is good here:

Fritatta Recipe Featuring Filippo Berio Olive Oil - Ann Again and again Reviews

Mix your Eggs with milk and gently pour over your mixture in the skillet.   Once the egg mixture appears to almost be cooked, add your cheese.

OK now, here comes the fun part.  (argh).  Flip over your Fritatta and let it cook for a bit on the other side.  Now – there should be a picture here showing you the finished product.  But, you know what?!  My flipping didn’t turn out so well and it was a slight mess.  Delicious mess, but not appealing for a picture :->

I wish you much more luck with your Fritatta!  (Also, if you have an oven ready skillet, cook your Fritatta in the oven on 400 for about 8 to 10 min.)

(*I am a BzzAgent and am happy to have been able to share my experience with you.  Product received for review.)

Giada De Laurentiis at Target

The lovely and talented Giada De Laurentiis has created a line of gourmet Italian favorites for Target.  They are delicious!

My family wanted to try the unique shaped pasta “Galletti”.  It’s like elbow macaroni with a flair for fashion! It has a beautifully ruffled edge with a hearty texture that holds up nicely with a thick, meaty sauce. 

Along with our loaf of french bread we tried Giada’s (I just love saying her name – ‘Giah-dah’ ;-> ) Herb and Lemon dipping oil.  Light and lively.  We spooned her Pepper & Eggplant Tomato Spread on toasted baguette.  Just delicious!

Enjoy an Italian feast with your family tonight and try Giada’s offerings.  You can find Giada’s new food line at Target stores nationwide.

(*disclosure:  I was given product to try in exchange for this review.  My opinions are truthfully my own)