7 Places In The Tampa Bay Area To Expand Your Foodie Experience

7 Places In The Tampa Bay Area To Expand Your Foodie Experience

Need help picking out where to go for dinner?

Picking out a cool spot to dine out is always tricky, especially when there are hundreds of places to dine out in the Tampa Bay Area. In the past year I have been on the hunt to find unique and local restaurants that serve delicious food and provide a great atmosphere to get together with friends, family or your significant other. Here’s a list of some great food places in the Tampa Bay area.

1. Datz- Tampa, Florida

Datz is probably one of my favorite finds in Tampa. With an eccentric menu with things like burgers with mac 'n' cheese buns, or a doughnut burger. The atmosphere is unique and gives off an urban and hip feeling.

2. Dough- Tampa, Florida

After an amazing meal at Datz you can stroll on over next door to Dough and end the night with a delicious treat. Dough is owned by Datz. Dough has a bright and colorful interior. You can make a choice of a variety of unique and delicious treats such as Lucky Charms Cheesecake, S’more’s Doughnuts and Fruity Pebble ice cream. If you do stop by what all the hype is about on the ice cream doughnut cones. If you really want to expand your taste buds, Dough is the perfect place to go with friends, family or your significant other.

3. Chocolate Pi- Tampa, Florida

If you are a chocolate aficionado like me, then Chocolate Pi is the place for you. This small and dainty restaurant located in South Tampa. Here they make homemade sodas on the spot, and with a menu that changes constantly you have to opportunity to try something new each visit- or stick with your favorite treat. Here I highly suggest trying one of their Mason Jar desserts where they layer different ingredients like brownie, salted caramel, vanilla bean custard or toasted meringue.

4. Ciccio Cali- Brandon, Florida

If you are looking for a lighter, healthier meal Ciccio’s is known for their variety of different bowls that are bursting with flavor from the "Gigante" with avocado-glazed buffalo chicken, to the Vegan bowl containing a medley of fresh veggies topped with a lemon agave vinaigrette. In addition to their bowl culture they offer other options like stir-fry, wraps, salads and pizza. On the weekends they offer a brunch menu with options like an amazing French toast waffle pretzel or their new gluten free pancakes.

5. Ichicoro- Seminole Heights, Florida

Instead of your ordinary ramen packets from the grocery store head on over to Ichicoro where you can try a big and flavorful bowl of freshly made ramen. The ambiance is very urban and upbeat, however they have a six person per party limit, making it a good date spot or place to catch up with a close friend.

6. Eddie & Sam's NY Pizza- Tampa, Florida

Now if you are a New Yorker like me, you would truly appreciate Eddie & Sam’s. They are located a block from the Riverwalk and Curtis Hixon waterfront park in downtown Tampa. What makes Eddie & Sam’s one of the most authentic and unique place in Tampa is the fact that they have water shipped from New York City to make their pizza dough — if that isn’t authentic then what is?

7. Oxford Exchange- Tampa, Florida

Oxford Exchange, or OE, is located across the street from the University of Tampa. Oxford Exchange is popular for their wide variety of coffee and tea. The atmosphere of Oxford Exchange is very light and modern, with a conservatory with live plants and natural sunlight. Oxford Exchange is a great spot to have brunch with the girls or celebrate a birthday.

If you are not in the mood for eating you can study in their lounge or browse their store located in the front of the building.

Cover Image Credit: Don Sullivan

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How To Choose And Buy Cookware for Your Home

How To Choose And Buy Cookware for Your Home

One of the most important factors that is often overlooked or is considered minor in selecting a new cookware is the material it is made of. If you are a serious cook, you certainly need more than your desires to lead you toward the proper equipment for your cooking needs. In fact, understanding the differences between cookware materials will help you in making the finest choice and further on, will allow you to enjoy and preserve your cookware in good shape.

The amount of care required should also be taken into consideration when selecting a cookware. Bear in mind that different cookware types involve different care and maintenance. There are pans that are safe to put in the dishwasher, while other pans can be damaged by dishwasher liquid. Some cookware can simply be wiped out after cooking while other types require soaking. If your cookware can tarnish over time then it obviously requires extra care compared to other types.

Stainless cookware is the most common but also the most friendly when it comes to price and qualities. It is popular for its good tensile strength, outstanding resistance to corrosion and non-reaction with alkaline and acidic materials like tomatoes and wine. Stainless steel pans make excellent sauces after sauteing the food. The only disadvantage is that stainless steel does not conduct heat well. It requires a solid aluminum or copper center to make it more responsive to heat. If you want your food to cook correctly, you need to get a high-quality heavy gauge stainless steel with aluminum sandwiched in-between. Stainless steel cookware is easy and simple to clean. You can wash it in a dishwasher and scrape with nylon pads.

Non-stick cookware is most preferred when cooking and reheating sticky kinds of food. It has a coated surface which means less oil, fat or butter used. Foods don't stick to the surface of a non-stick cookware. Some cooks like non-stick pans for its easy cleaning, although care must be given while washing a non-stick cookware. To make sure not to scratch the surface, use only wooden or coated utensils like plastic when cooking, and wash in hot soapy water but not in a dishwasher.

Cast iron is probably the most inexpensive cookware. It provides a non-toxic cooking surface that heats evenly and quickly. Once heated, a cast iron cookware maintains the heat for a long time and is ideal for slow cooking and deep-frying. The downside is that cast iron cookware can rust, stain and rough when exposed to air, moisture and certain foods. Do not wash your cast-iron with soap and water. Wipe it with a clean paper towel instead. To put off rust, eliminate any excess moisture from the surface and coat it with oil before storing.

Aluminum cookware is another material that makes up more than half of the cookware today. Aside from its being cheap, aluminum is a good conductor of heat and is used commonly with non-stick pots and pans. The obvious disadvantage is its reaction to acidic and alkaline foods leading to corrosion that spoils the taste of the food cooked. It is why aluminum cookware is frequently coated with stainless steel or anodized coating to save food. Aluminum does not require any particular care. Washing it in soapy water is sufficient. However, if the surface has anodized coating, be careful not to scratch the finish and avoid washing the cookware in a dishwasher.

Lined copper cookware is an expensive material but a good choice for many cooking methods. Copper has the ability to conduct heat uniformly and cooks food more evenly making it taste better. Copper cookware cools down quickly when removed from heat. The disadvantage is that copper interacts with everything it comes in contact with. Moisture in the air causes it to form a poisonous film on it. Salty food causes a chemical reaction that produces a metallic taste in food. This is the reason why copper cookware is lined with tin, silver or stainless steel to improve its qualities. Copper cookware is delicate that requires subtle washing with soapy water and regular polishing with special copper polish to maintain its clear copper shine. are you still unable to choose the best cookware for your home? Check out on The Juzz and get the best product for your home!


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10 Comfort Foods To Get You Through The Winter

Just like Mom or Dad used to make.

Now that the holidays are over, and all of the fun's been had, we all have to get back to the monotony of our daily lives. This is usually the point where it sinks in that winter is starting to be a real pain in the ass.

There is absolutely no argument in that. Coming back from a vacation to go to work or to school (or both) is made so much worse now that we also have to wake up at the butt crack of dawn just to shovel your driveway and warm up our cars.

After we barely survive the ice-packed drive to campus or work, we find ourselves droning away in our chairs only to gaze longingly out of the window and see that everything is pretty much dead and covered in white. It sure sucks the soul out of me sometimes.

There's no doubt that everyone needs a pick-me-up every now and then just to plow through our snow-filled early days of the year. For that, we need to turn to the only thing that we can all collectively trust to raise our spirits as much as our sodium levels: good ol' fashioned comfort food. Ah yes, just like mom used to make.

So here it is, a list of delicious soul-enriching dishes that'll melt away the ice that's imprisoning your heart this winter.

1. Chicken Noodle Soup

Whether you want to buy cans of this stuff or make it yourself from scratch, it is always the right choice.

2. Macaroni and Cheese

No, I'm not talking about the Kraft kind. Treat yourself and make it the right way.

3. Grilled Cheese Sandwich

I like mine to be made using so much butter. Like, literally so much butter. Don't forget the tomato soup (if you're into that).

4. Wild Rice Soup

Throw some chicken in there if you want. Maybe some ham. Hell, toss in both. Live a little when experimenting with the recipe.

5. Green Bean Casserole

This, this right here, is my go to. This is my personal favorite. I'll crawl my way to the kitchen and bake up a batch of this on my worst days, the kind of days where my favorite character dies on "Game of Thrones" or something.

6. Mashed Potatoes and Gravy

No one can deny this classic. Here's a simple recipe if you're not used to making it yourself.

7. Apple Pie

You get bonus points if you cool it on the window sill after making it. That way your neighbors will smell what you're cooking up and envy you.

8. Tater Tot Hotdish

Be right back. I'm going to clean up my drool really quick. I'll share the recipe if you promise to let me have a bite.

9. Beef Stew

You can make this a variety of ways so don't be afraid to experiment. Here's a recipe to start you off though.

10. Ice Cream

It's almost too easy. Good ol' ice cream will never do you wrong. It'll never give you up and it'll never let you down. It'll never run around... and hurt you.

And there you have it, folks. I hope this article has made you tummy rumble enough for you to get up and get started on making one of these. They may not be the healthiest options you could have for dinner, but considering the freezing death outside, I do know for sure that these foods are high one nutrient in particular, arguably the most important nutrient of all... happiness. So what say you?

Because if you ask me, I say we should stop focusing so much on preheating our cars and start focusing on preheating our ovens. It's going to be a long winter, so get up and go warm yourself up with friends, a significant other, your dog, or just yourself by the stove this evening, and take care of yourself.

Cover Image Credit: everypixel

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