Krusteaz Cookies + Free Giveaway! (Sponsored)

Have you seen the Krusteaz products in your local grocery store? They make a variety of product mixes, from their famous pancake and waffle mixes to more like muffins, cornbreads, brownies, bars (such as lime bars, pecan bars, lemon bars), breads (including flatbread!), cobblers, scones, and of course the mix that started the company, pie crust mix. They have gluten free products as well.

Krusteaz (a combination of Crust and Ease”) started in 1932 with a women’s bridge club in Seattle and their idea for an easy pie crust in which all you had to do was add water and that’s it!  From then they expanded to pancake mix with the “just add water” formula. They marketed it in the 1960s with a “Krusteaz Kurtesy Kitchen” that was a pancake and biscuit food cart that made it fresh on a grill built into cart.

#TBT to our traveling diner days, circa 1960. #krusteaz #vintage

A photo posted by Krusteaz (@krusteaz) on

All of their mixes promise to be super easy and often just need you to add a liquid (water, oil, beer or carbonated beverage for the beer bread, etc) and if needed eggs. Everything else is already in the box, be it Apple Cinnamon pancakes to Blueberry Belgian waffles to Garlic and Onion flatbreads.  The only exception is for cobblers and pies, which you naturally have to fill in yourself with your fruit of choice, but they provide you instructions based on whether the fruit is fresh or frozen. For the cookies you add just 2 things, egg and butter.

Words to bake by. #seizethekrusteaz #bakingquote A photo posted by Krusteaz (@krusteaz) on

Krusteaz also has a great fundraising support if you are looking for ideas for an event to raise money for your school, public charity, hospital, community service or religious organization. As part of Krusteaz Gives Back, they help support a Pancake Breakfast Fundraising Program that includes reimbursing your organization for 50% of the cost of Krusteaz pancake mix as well as providing lots of online tools and press kid and such to help organize and promote the event.

I have decided to partner with Krusteaz to offer a FREE Krusteaz Back to School prize pack that includes

  1. Krusteaz Bakery Style Cookie Mixes including
    • Triple Chocolate Chunk
      Krustez cookie mix - Triple Chocolate Chunk
    • Meyer Lemon
      Krustez cookie mix - Meyer Lemon
    • Double Peanut Butter
      Krustez cookie mix - Double Peanut Butter
    • Brown Sugar Oatmeal
      Krustez cookie mix - Brown Sugar Oatmeal
    • Oatmeal Scotchie
      Krustez cookie mix - Oatmeal Scotchie
    • Butter Vanilla Sugar
      Krustez cookie mix - Butter Vanilla Sugar
  2. Krusteaz insulated lunch bag
  3. Krusteaz apron and oven mitt

For this reader giveway, all you have to do is use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter in the way you want. Good luck!
Krustez Back to school prize pack

I couldn’t resist some of the cookie combos that Krusteaz has created – Oatmeal Scotchie that has butterscotch chips and oats? Or Meyer Lemon cookie? F though immediately voted for the Triple Chocolate Chunk and the Double Peanut Butter, so I caved to his wishes.

I made the Triple Chocolate Chunk, which boasts 3 kinds of chocolate, first. It took only 5 minutes to mix the butter and egg with the mix by hand, and then the cookies needed to be baked for only about 10 minutes so it was very fast from desire for cookie to eating cookie. I was pleased to see the size of the chunks in the mix.
Krusteaz Triple Chocolate Chunk cookie mix really has nice big chocolate chunks in it! Just add butter and egg Krusteaz Triple Chocolate Chunk cookie mix is best mixed by hand to fully get the dough to come together Krusteaz Triple Chocolate Chunk only add butter and egg, takes 10 minutes or so to bake

And Krusteaz offers great ideas if you visit their Recipes website for more creative ways to use their cookies as part of their #SeizetheKrusteaz campaign. For instance use their Brown Sugar Oatmeal cookie mix to make Cookie Topped Baked Apples, or the Double Peanut Butter Cookie Mix to make Double Peanut Butter Cookie Banana Pudding.
Krusteaz recipe, use their Brown Sugar Oatmeal cookie mix to make Cookie Topped Baked Apples Krusteaz recipe, use their Double Peanut Butter Cookie Mix to make Double Peanut Butter Cookie Banana Pudding
Images from Krusteaz

One idea for their Triple Chocolate Chunk Cookie mix is to use it for a Cherry Topped Cheesecake with Triple Chocolate Chunk Cookie Crust or for a fun colorful dessert, use the Butter Vanilla Sugar Cookie mix for a Sugar Cookie Fruit Pizza.
Krusteaz recipe, one idea for the Triple Chocolate Chunk Cookie is to use it for a Cherry Topped Cheesecake with Triple Chocolate Chunk Cookie Crust Krusteaz recipe, use the Butter Vanilla Sugar Cookie for a Sugar Cookie Fruit Pizza
Images from Krusteaz

Kudos for their many creative ideas and working with so many great ambassadors – their Facebook and Instagram is pretty mouthwatering! You can stay informed of their ideas by checking the Krusteaz Facebook or Instagram @Krusteaz or the Twitter @Krusteaz or hashtag #krusteaz.

What are you favorite kind of cookies? Do you have a creative way of using cookies similar to how Krusteaz offers those ideas to #SeizetheKrusteaz? Have you tried any of the Krusteaz products before?

Don’t forget to enter the giveway, and good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I received a goodie package of cookie mixes from Krusteaz for this post, and the Back to School prize pack is also being provided by Krusteaz. I will always provide my honest opinion and assessment of all products and experiences I may be given. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are entirely my own.

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The Bruschetta of Shift Drinks

It goes without saying that the spirit forward drinks of Shift Drinks, located at SW 12th and Morrison and open late from mid afternoon around 4 -5 PM to 2:30 AM are tasty.
Shift Drinks exterior Shift Drinks interior Shift Drinks interior Shift Drinks interior

This is a place whose purpose is after all, all about after a hard’s day work liquid refreshment.
Shift Drinks Shift Drinks

They have light fare to snack on while enjoying your drink, but it’t not meant to be a full meal. The best thing I think to eat on the menus are their bruschettas – and I’ve had them all.

The garlicky vegetarian Paamb Tomaquet with garlic, fresh tomato, salt
Shift Bruschetta - Paamb Tomaquet with garlic, fresh tomato, salt

PLT with Prosciutto, arugula, tomato, aioli
Shift Bruschetta - PLT with Prosciutto, arugula, tomato, aioli

My favorite the classic Bruschetta with fresh ricotta, tomato, and basil
Shift Bruschetta - fresh ricotta, tomato, and basil

The rotating seasonal based on what’s fresh, which could vary from Grilled summer squash with cherry tomato and basil pesto to Mushroom and Pesto and more
Shift Bruschetta - Grilled summer squash with cherry tomato and basil pesto Shift Drinks Bruschetta - mushroom and pesto

With it’s airy feel of high ceilings, big windows letting in light, simple black and white furniture and photographs on the wall, the simplicity of Shift feels sophisticated.

Just like how they transformed basic bruschetta into something simple yet complex for your enjoyment, expect your drinks to be the same way. And, their late hours are perfect to end any evening.

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Eat for a Cause August 29 and Help Women!

On Saturday, August 29, there are two opportunities where you can Eat For a Cause and help women at the same time! Don’t let the weather predictions for some rain and wind deter you.

Ruby Jewel Hawthorne, benefiting Raphael House

First, there is the Grand Opening of the new location of Ruby Jewel Ice Cream at SE Hawthorne, in the Mount Tabor neighborhood. The 4707 SE Hawthorne location is right between Por Que No and Apizza Scholls, both famous restaurants that will be open for lunch (as well as dinner). So then come on over for dessert because as part of their Grand Opening, a percentage of the proceeds goes towards Raphael House, a Domestic Violence agency.

Founded in 1977, Raphael House of Portland is dedicated to fighting the causes and effects of domestic violence. They offer emergency shelter in a confidential location, a 24-hour in-house crisis line, transitional housing and advocacy programs, non-residential advocacy in partnership with the Portland Police Bureau, and also work to bring an end to violence through community outreach and education. Raphael House is the largest domestic violence shelter in Multnomah County. Annually, Raphael House provides 10,000 safe nights for women and children in their emergency shelter and support as many as 5,000 callers on their 24/7 crisis line.

Ruby Jewel Hawthorne will be open noon – 11 PM, so you have plenty of time during the day to make your way here. As part of the celebration, they will have live music by Mo Phillips from 2-4 PM and also a special Mt Tabor Volcano Sundae which you can see previewed by Drew Karney of KGW here and you can see posed here… The Mt Tabor Volcano Sundae is a 2 scoops of ice cream (your choice) with an upside down “volcano” cone, hardening chocolate sauce, double chocolate cookies, and fresh strawberry sauce and whipped cream.

Special flavors above and beyond their regular flavors include
Ruby Jewel Ice Cream flavors for September 2015

September Seasonal Ice Cream

  • Chocolate Chip Squared– Singing Dog Vanilla ice cream with mini dark chocolate chips and chunks of housemade chocolate chip cookies.
  • Double Chocolate Toffee Crunch– Ruby Jewel’s classic Double Chocolate ice cream studded with house-made, chocolate-topped toffee.
  • Coconut Cream Pie– toasted coconut based ice cream filled with swirls of marshmallow fluff, candied coconut and vanilla wafer cookie crumbs.
  • Hazelnut Latte– Nossa Familia’s Full Cycle Blend coffee is paired with Oregon hazelnuts for a smooth coffee treat.
  • Honey Pistachio– Bee Local’s Oregon High Desert honey and pistachio ice cream with roasted pistachios.
  • PB & J Sandwich– Peanut butter ice cream with housemade Concord grape jelly and challah bread croutons.

Dairy Free

  • Portland Soda Works Root Beer Ice– Indian sarsaparilla and warming spices of Portland Soda Works root beer syrups used for sodas, cocktails and now a refreshing, nostalgic ice!
  • Reverend Nat’s Revival Cider Ice– Bold, crisp and full of apple flavor.

Samples of sundes in mini size at Ruby Jewel: Chocolate Chip Squared Ice Cream with Caramel Sauce and Pralined Pecans with Whipped Cream Ruby Jewel's Ice Cream cocktails with Portland Soda Works Root Beer Ice with rum, root beer syrup and orange liquor and Reverend Nat's Revival Cider Ice combined with Prosecco

Potential Ice Cream Sundae Combos

At a media preview, I also got to try some great sundae combinations if you are looking for some ideas. For instance a Chocolate Chip Squared Ice Cream with Caramel Sauce and Praline Pecans with Whipped Cream and an Oregon Strawberry Ice Cream topped with Housemade Marshmallow Fluff and Crisp Chunks (these are mini sample sundaes, the ones you get will be much bigger ;D ). I didn’t try this myself, but there is also for your consideration the combo of Hazelnut Latte ice cream with chocolate dip, whipped cream, and espresso caramel sauce
Ruby Jewel sundae combo of Chocolate Chip Squared Ice Cream with Caramel Sauce and Pralined Pecans with Whipped Cream Ruby Jewel mini sundae sample of Oregon Strawberry Ice Cream topped with Housemade Marshmallow Fluff and Crisp

Winning Cookie Sandwich!

They also debuted the winning social media contest winner of the #betweentwocookies suggestions from the public: the winner is chocolate chip fudge chunk cookies with fluffernutter ice cream submitted by Chris Zales.
Ruby Jewel #betweentwocookies winner, the chocolate chip fudge chunk cookies with fluffernutter ice cream submitted by Chris Zales

Dairy Free Ice Cream Floats

They also had two wonderful ice cocktails (aka the dairy free ice creams float): Reverend Nat’s Revival Cider Ice combined with Prosecco (YUM) and the Portland Soda Works Root Beer Ice with rum, root beer syrup and orange liquor (quite a bit stronger than prosecco).
Ruby Jewel's Ice Cream cocktails with Portland Soda Works Root Beer Ice with rum, root beer syrup and orange liquor and Reverend Nat's Revival Cider Ice combined with Prosecco   Ruby Jewel's Ice Cream cocktail of Reverend Nat's Revival Cider Ice combined with Prosecco Ruby Jewel's Ice Cream cocktail with Portland Soda Works Root Beer Ice with rum, root beer syrup and orange liquor

EastBurn, benefiting Portland Women’s Crisis Line

Next, hop on over to Eastburn at 1800 East Burnside Street for their 2nd Annual Grilled Cheese Invitational! 9 establishments throw down at EastBurn to see who has the best grilled cheese.
Eastburn Grilled Cheese Invitational 2015

Participants include so far

  • Meat Cheese Bread
  • Bazi Bier Brasserie
  • Brunch Box
  • Big Ass Sandwiches
  • Gaufre Gourmet
  • Zeek’s Cheese Grill
  • The Blue Plate
  • Gil’s Speakeasy

It’s 5-11 PM and all ages. A $20 ticket gets you a scorecard, where you will then go to each competitor’s hole (apparently it’s set up like a golf course, thus the golf club with a grilled cheese in the poster) to try each grilled cheese. Then, you rate their grilled cheese based on taste, originality, presentation and best overall.

All proceeds go to the Portland Women’s Crisis Line. The Portland Women’s Crisis Line (PWCL) was one of the first five sexual violence crisis lines in the United States. PWCL provides services to the Tri-County area made up of Multnomah, Clackamas, and Washington counties, and its toll-free number can be called from anywhere in the state. PWCL provides social services such as crisis intervention, in person response for survivors of sexual violence, emergency housing resources, danger to safety transportation assistance, safety planning, advocacy and support, and agency and community support groups, as well as being a social change organize to not only empower those who experience violence, but also to end the oppression and violence which causes them to seek out our services.

If you can’t make the invitational, at least stop by during the month of August (I know, only a few days left) because every $5 Grilled Cheese at Eastburn this month also has the proceeds go towards PWCL.

One of my favorite things about Eastburn are their swing seats, which you can find by the front windows when you first walk in and also in their back patio!
Eastburn Exterior Eastburn Exterior EastBurn bar
EastBurn front window tables with its swings for seats at the tables! EastBurn back patio with its swings for seats at the tables!

I hope you can join me in eating for a cause in supporting both of these very important and worthy non profits and help them continue to make a difference every day.

Disclosure: I was invited to a media event for Ruby Jewel Hawthorne’s Grand Opening to preview the September flavors and menu offerings, but I was not asked to write this post, and I threw in EastBurn as well because I think both are amazing events that you might consider for Saturday. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are entirely my own.

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Lunch at Lil Wares – Very Last Week

Lil’ Wares is a summer pop up that opened from June – August just across the street from Smallwares at Northeast 45th and Fremont. It was just filling in the time between the old Red Fig cafe and when the developer who purchased this small restaurant with its patio (seriously the patio is bigger than the inside of the little house/restaurant) is going to do something with this space. That means the last days of Lil’ Wares are approaching in less than a week as it closes on August 31.

Seriously a great patio, with plenty of shade.
Lil' Wares popped up for the summer just across the street from Smallwares and offered a huge patio - bigger than the restaurant space inside the little house Lil' Wares popped up for the summer just across the street from Smallwares and offered a huge patio - bigger than the restaurant space inside the little house

If you haven’t been on a weekday (on weekends they serve the Smallwares brunch), you may not have known they have a special fun Asian-influenced but definitely not Asian (I think it’s best described as a mash up of Asian and American comfort) menu. According to Eater some of the menu items may appear on the Smallwares menu eventually, but since you don’t know what that will be, maybe you should squeeze in a visit now!

Lunch at Lil Wares extended their Portland Burger Week burger, the Sleaze Burger, composed of a ground pork and chinese sausage patty with peanut sauce, cabbage slaw, fish sauce, tomato and pickles on a sesame bun… though it’s no longer at the special $5 price that was for that week (it was a secret that you could get the Portland Burger Week burger at Lil’ Wares from 11-3 to avoid the madness of everyone getting it in the evening at Smallwares!).
Lil' Ware extended their Portland Burger Week burger, the Sleaze Burger = a ground pork and chinese sausage patty with peanut sauce, cabbage slaw, fish sauce, tomato and pickles on a sesame bun Lil' Ware extended their Portland Burger Week burger, the Sleaze Burger = a ground pork and chinese sausage patty with peanut sauce, cabbage slaw, fish sauce, tomato and pickles on a sesame bun

Other meaty options include a Mu Shu Burrito with pork sausage, woodear mushrooms, egg, cabbage, charred scallion ginger salsa, black bean hoisin sauce and rice, or a General Tso Sandwich with fried chicken, broccoli slaw, charred thai chilies and fried shallots. I hope to have a chance to try a few other menu items I have missed before the end- like a Grilled Stuffed Avocado with chili sesame dressing, fried egg, red onion, toast, nori jam, and optional add on of bay shrimp, or the Chop Chae Noodles with shiso pesto, pine nuts, pickled shitakes, sweet potato noodles, salted black beans, and optional add in of dungeness crab.
Lil Wares, a summer 2015 popup from Smallwares PDX, Mu Shu Burrito with pork sausage, woodear mushrooms, egg, cabbage, charred scallion ginger salsa, black bean hoisin sauce and rice Lil Wares, a summer 2015 popup from Smallwares PDX, and their General Tso Sandwich with fried chicken, broccoli slaw, charred thai chilies and fried shallots

My favorite item on the menu is the Poware Bowl with lentils, cilantro mint cashew sauce, black tea peach chutney, beets and paneer. One of the best vegetarian bowls I’ve ever had! The burger paled compared to flavors this bowl- isn’t that saying something?
Lil' Wares Poware Bowl with lentils, cilantro mint cashew sauce, black tea peach chutney, beets and paneer Lil' Wares Poware Bowl with lentils, cilantro mint cashew sauce, black tea peach chutney, beets and paneer

Drinks available include a Kimchi Bloody Mary with vodka, spicy kimchi base, veggie skewer of brussel sprout, shitake and beet plus an oyster add on

Or try the Sake Citrus Soda with sake, lemon, ginger, and soda muddled with herbs, or the Vodka Slush with vodka, strawberry, lime, salt and pink peppercorn. Both are perfect for outdoor patio sipping and relaxing.
Sake Citrus Soda with sake, lemon, ginger, and soda muddled with herbs from Lil Wares, a summer 2015 popup from Smallwares PDX "Lil

August 31 is quickly approaching, so hurry on over and visit now while they are still there!

Lil' Wares popped up for the summer just across the street from Smallwares Lil' Wares popped up for the summer just across the street from Smallwares Lil' Wares popped up for the summer just across the street from Smallwares

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Dill Shrimp Salad Sandwich with Cucumber

This Dill Shrimp Salad Sandwich with Cucumber is delicious with a glass of pinot gris. It feels like a sandwich that so represents summer.
Recipe for a shrimp sandwich with shrimp, cucumber, dill, and a mayo dill lemon sauce Recipe for a shrimp sandwich with shrimp, cucumber, dill, and a mayo dill lemon sauce

This would probably taste just as good if you used crab instead – it reminds me a lot of sandwiches you could enjoy at a rental house on the beach. I can almost hear the waves and smell the ocean and feel the sun and heat radiating back from the sand now from my shaded deck now.

I tend to see these type of sandwiches more on South of the US. I do hear that shrimp sandwiches like these are also popular in Scandinavia, though I think they simply steam the shrimp and may omit the Mayo. The Scandinavians are with me though on feeling this same perfect pairing of shrimp with cucumber.

Recipe for a shrimp sandwich with shrimp, cucumber, dill, and a mayo dill lemon sauce

Ingredients:

  • 4 hoagie buns (I used Franz Bakery Stadium Rolls. They are doughy delicious and sometimes you can find a Spicy Chipotle flavor one with peppers, though the ones you see here are the Franz Bakery Outdoor Rolls!)
    Franz Bakery is local to Portland and makes these delicious Outdoor Stadium Style rolls which are better than any hot dog roll because they are soft and doughy, which means you can also use them for sandwiches, which I do! Franz Bakery is local to Portland and makes these delicious Outdoor Stadium Style rolls which are better than any hot dog roll because they are soft and doughy, which means you can also use them for sandwiches, which I do!
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 pound uncooked shrimp, peeled and deveined
    Shrimp, raw
  • 1/2 cup – 3/4 cup mayonnaise (adjust based on your preference of how much sauce you want with your shrimp)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (perhaps more in case your guests want to squeeze a wedge worth more upon serving the sandwiches)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 4-6 teaspoons fresh dill (I like adding dill at the end when serving so the sandwich looks nice too)
  • 1 cup chopped cucumber
  • Butter Lettuce

Directions:

  1. In a large skillet, heat butter over medium heat. Add shrimp once the butter is hot and stir for a few minutes until shrimp turn pink. Remove from heat and then let cool so you can remove the tails. My trick for removing shrimp tails so you don’t lose that little bit of shrimp meat encased inside the tail shell portion is to press a bit til you hear a snap before pulling the tail off.
  2. In a small bowl, mix mayonnaise, lemon juice, dill, salt and pepper with the shrimp and the chopped cucumber and toss until everything is coated with the sauce.
    Toss shrimp sauteed in a little bit of butter just until cooked with a mixture of mayo, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and dill Toss shrimp sauteed in a little bit of butter just until cooked with a mixture of mayo, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and dill
  3. In the hoagie buns, first place a couple pieces of butter lettuce (I admit I also spread the leftover butter from cooking the shrimp on the buns before placing the butter lettuce). Then, spoon the shrimp and cucumber mixture into your buns
    Recipe for a shrimp sandwich with shrimp, cucumber, dill, and a mayo dill lemon sauce Recipe for a shrimp sandwich with shrimp, cucumber, dill, and a mayo dill lemon sauce

Make sure you provide a lot of napkins! And maybe, a pinot gris!
Recipe for a shrimp sandwich with shrimp, cucumber, dill, and a mayo dill lemon sauce Recipe for a shrimp sandwich with shrimp, cucumber, dill, and a mayo dill lemon sauce

Have you had shrimp salad sandwiches before? What’s your favorite type of eats on a beach getaway or trip to the coast?

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