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  1. Late to the party, but I almost always dine alone! I'll have to start posting here. Does take out count? I don't sit in restaurants right now. If so, I have some meals I can share already
  2. @btbyrd - Where in NC do you go camping? I want to do backpacking, but I don't have the equipment or companions. I find that I like car camping. I keep most of my stuff in the car and work out of there. Maybe I'm just more suited for that I went on a spur of the moment trip on Halloween to the same place I went previously. This time, I remembered all the cooking utensils I needed. I also had just gone grocery shopping, so had some good food to cook. I've made the food pics into collages for easier viewing. The first night, I got there late, so I just had some soup. It wasn't exciting, so I didn't take a picture. It was even missing chicken because I was smart and brought the canned chicken that needed a can opener. The next day, it was supposed to rain. I wanted to make sure that I got to use my hot dog fork, so that's what I had for breakfast I also successfully cooked a potato! Remember last time it got all burned?? I'm learning. Before lunch, I decided to experiment with some small loaf pans I got at the grocery store. Potatoes and eggs. I thought it would be a neat thing to make breakfast in a loaf pan. Unfortunately, I over cooked it slightly. It still needs some tweaking. The potatoes on the other hand, were great! Such a lovely crust on the bottom For my actual lunch meal, I had some of the potatoes, steak, and frozen cauliflower. That, too, needs some tweaking. The coals under it were too hot or I left it too long. Still, I enjoyed it. The steak was slightly underdone for me, but still good. Luckily, it was still in my tasty range. Do you see the crust on the taters? It's a little over because I "reheated" them on some coals before lunch This next one was an experiment I was eager to try - mashed potatoes, chicken gravy, and chicken (of course). I used instant mashed potatoes with powdered milk. I think it worked out ok. It might have been better with something other than non-fat milk. It looks a little grey. I also used butter buds, but I don't think I added enough, I couldn't taste anything buttery at all. I added the dry ingredients to my insulated jar, poured in boiling water, closed it, and let it sit. Next, I heated up the chicken I cooked earlier (a little well done). The gravy mix said to mix it with cold water, so I used the dry potato jar to do that. I boiled some more water and added that to finish it. The potatoes were still hot in the jar, add some chicken, and gravy on top. This would have been better without the burned chicken, but I think it was an over all successful experiment
  3. I went on another trip to WNC. This time I was in Fairview which is right next to Asheville. Unknown to me when I booked the place. I could have just stayed in Asheville again. Anyways, I tried to go to all different restaurants again, but not necessarily in Asheville. The first place I went was the Groovy Beast Grill in Gastonia. It was on the way to the state park I was visiting. It was disappointing. I got a fried chicken sandwich with cheese and onion petals. All of the breading had pepper in it, so the prevailing flavor was pepper. If I had known, I would have gotten something other than the onion petals. And of course, the tomato that I requested off was still there. The cookie was huge, but, sadly, seemed old/stale. If I were to try it again, I think I might get the special or something. There were A LOT of people there, so there must've been something redeemable. Later, after getting to my airbnb in Fairview, I ventured to Okie Dokie's Smokehouse in Swannanoa, NC. It was good, the service was fast. Frankly, some of the best potato salad I've had outside of my mother's house. I got a sample plate with ribs and beef. I know, I should have gotten pork, but I wanted something different. Sadly. I wasn't a fan of their sauces. There just wasn't anything remarkable about it. If I were to go again, I would get the pork so that I would be able to use the vinegar sauce, at least. For breakfast the next morning, I tried a recommendation of the hosts called the Local Joint. It was lackluster even for breakfast. They didn't actually toast the muffin and the bacon was floppy. I was disappointed that this was a "great" place according to the hosts. Of course, I had to check out the hot dog king. Honestly, it was JUST what I was expecting. I wanted to go back, but I just didn't find the time. I would probably get more than just a dog, though. This definitely didn't fill me up. I'm not sure if it had anything that was made on site. I took a picture of the menu if anyone is interested. Another win was a place in Asheville (not downtown) called the Social. It is NOT as fancy as the website makes it look. It's almost the exact opposite! It's kind of a hole in the wall filled with locals. After the tiny lunch, I went with a DIY burger. I added either american or cheddar cheese, onion petals, and bacon. The onion petals really didn't add much, but the rest of it was great. Juicy and delicious. The only complaint is that they need a wider bun to contain everything. I forgot to ask for no tomato on this one, so it's on me. Now, this was a breakfast I would gladly eat daily. Kosta's Kitchen in Fletcher erased the previous day's breakfast. It was great. Fast service, not too expensive. The omelets had the fillings mixed in except for the cheese. The potatoes were great. Crispy and tasty. Biscuits were soft and warm. I wanted to go before I left, but it was closed Monday's. Lots of places in the area were closed Monday and Tuesday. I would definitely recommend this place. I couldn't decide what I wanted for lunch, so I had ice cream I went to the Hop in Asheville My last dinner was, sadly, another recommendation from the hosts. Another highly recommended place called Straightaway Cafe in Black Mountain. That smelled like a barn with no animals in site. I was pretty ignored the whole time. My table was horrible, shoved against a back wall with no other tables around me - I felt like an outcast. The food was fine. Nothing special. Nothing to risk the treacherous driveways to the place to get again. I just wanted something simple and since the Hot Dog place was closed, this is what I could get close to me. Only 3 tenders and a large amount of fries. Since everywhere I wanted to go was closed on Monday when I was leaving, I stuck it out for a while and decided to pull into a Granny's Country Kitchen just off the highway in Icard NC. It was slow as molasses. It took me a half hour to get my food. The problem was that they thought I wanted smoked ham instead of smoked sausage. I knew it wouldn't be good when they didn't bring out the rest of the food. By the time they corrected their mistake, the rest of it wasn't what I would call hot. Barely warm. At this point, I was famished, so I ate it. The sausage was good, though probably not worth the trouble. I would probably eat here again, but make it more simple for the cooks. Hope you enjoyed Also, let me know if this isn't the right place to be putting these things.
  4. I am lunching with a bunch of ladies this week, but yesterday's experience was just ridiculous. The woman I was going with wanted Indian or a local deli/grill. I figured we could go to my favorite Indian restaurant. We get there - CLOSED ON MONDAYS! What!?! Luckily, she knew of another place close by (there are A LOT of Indian restaurants in the area), so we headed there. Ordered an appetizer of pakoras. Nibbled on those while sipping on complementary ginger and lemon tea and BOOM - power goes out. REALLY?!? Waited a few minutes to see if it would come back, but there is construction nearby and it was the whole area down to the traffic lights. Third time's the charm??? We ended up at the deli/grill for a tasty lunch and laughed at our misfortune. Accidentally took a 1.5 hour lunch But we had to eat!! The universe just did not want us to get any Indian food for lunch, apparently.
  5. @Thanks for the Crepes - two hours might be just enough time for me to do what I want. There's a lumberjack event I wouldn't mind seeing. And it looks like the animals are still there for free. Good to know about cash only. Since moving down here, I rarely carry cash. It's more prevalent back home than here, although I do know of some places that are cash only or it's just easier with cash. Yep - all of the buses are $5 and it looks like the Cary one starts at 8:30am. I don't need to worry about the job because I am not starting until the 30th. Next week is my own time! Also, I am a woman, so I will just have to suffer the bathrooms.
  6. @Thanks for the Crepes - tell us how you really feel Basically, my only interest is the food, not really the rides. I hear too much about them collapsing. I miss funnel cakes and corn dogs. I wouldn't mind something fun, too, like a fried something. My anxiety can't handle parking like that which has been a huge deterrent in going by myself. I would definitely take a bus without hesitation. I've actually never been to a state fair, period. We used to go to a rib fest near where I lived when I was growing up, so I am very familiar with expensive food and large crowds. They did include a lot in the tickets like live music and pig races and farm animals. It's more about just the experience. I am not working next week as I transition to a new job, so I was actually thinking of trying to get out there in the middle of the day, hoping the crowds wouldn't be as bad in the middle of the week. Also, yep! I couldn't believe I'd been here that long, either! I'm just newer to egullet I remember when I was travelling to Raleigh from Key West last year, the counter/check in agent was from the same area. He asked how long I'd lived there and I said about 10 years. He looked at me and said that I wasn't new, but wasn't a local just yet. He was hilarious.
  7. I got another mini cheese plate. This one wasn't as much of a win for me. Here's the package. The only cheese I knew was cheddar (obviously) and goat cheese. I was really worried that the crackers were going to be some horrible olive thing. Here's my plate. The cheese on the top(ish) didn't have any identifying marks. It was my favorite besides the goat cheese. So, I'm guessing it was the cheddar even though I wouldn't be able to identify it as that. The cheese on the lower left had this rind. Honestly, it tasted like swiss. I do not like swiss. I'm guessing this is the Grand Ewe The one at the top had two rinds. I saw M on the label, so I'm guessing it's the Madrigal. I liked this one, too. It was still kind of swissy, but not as strong As for the crackers, the ones in the package were wonderful for the goat cheese. A little sweet from raisins and really crunchy. Well, as crunchy as it could be after bring store in the fridge. Also, everything bagel flavor crackers and the crackers from the last package. Now, I want to go get goat cheese and those crackers.
  8. Ooooo. Thanks for the tip! I will check it out for next time. When I go, it's the same camp site the whole time. Thanks! I was pretty happy with how everything turned out. Sadly, I used heavy duty foil Maybe because it was store brand? I actually almost threw a whole potato in the fire, but that's when I realized I forgot my butter. Baked potatoes with no butter? No thanks. I have books to distract me No booze needed.
  9. I recently went camping again and did the cooking all over the fire I apologize for the quality, at the time, I was rushing to get things cooked so I could eat For the first night, I cooked a beef sausage, peppers, and packets of potatoes. I didn't get a pic of the whole meal (see hunger above), but here's some shots of different elements. I definitely need to work on the potato cooking. They were mostly not cooked when I took them out of the fire. I put them back in as I was relaxing so I could use the potatoes in the morning. Unfortunately, one ripped open and the potatoes were mostly burned in that packet Packets of LIES The next day, I used the edible potatoes and some of the sausage to eat with eggs. It took about 2 hours to get the fire started and I definitely didn't heat up the sausage and potatoes correctly, but I was so hungry by then, I didn't care 🤣 I kept that fire burning ALL day so I wouldn't have to re-light it. I used it to cook some ham for later use and burgers. I forgot the spatula to turn them, so I decided to use some foil to cook it. That way, if it fell apart or something with the tongs, it would be saved. It worked pretty well. The only thing I adjusted was I poked some holes in the foil so the fat could drain. So. Good. With cheese of course I also had sandwiches, chips, trader joe's instant ramen, and tried to have some soup (that fell over and spilled when cooking) I don't have any other trips scheduled, but since it's fall, I think I'm going to have to go again. Definitely need to practice lighting the fire and the packet potatoes!!
  10. The first time through, I read Wahoo as "WAHOOOOO!" I was wondering why you were so excited. Like maybe you just really like ceviche and carpaccio. Then, I realized it was probably a fish. Further scrolling confirmed - fish. Where's the facepalm emoji (Post quote trimmed to relevant parts)
  11. Never claimed to be Jewish Don't knock it until you try it. just a different flavor of sweet to go with the savory
  12. Ugh. I had a whole post written and accidentally closed the browser I was almost done, too!! Hillbilly Grill in West Jefferson NC Very tasty. The interior was a lot nicer than I expected from the name The bacon was the best I ever had. Smoky and crisp. I would definitely go back. Tortugas Lie in Nags Head I would never go back here. It was a really bad meal which was surprising because it was PACKED there. Waveriders Coffee and Deli in Nags Head, NC While it was tasty, I don't understand why the line was out the door. I wouldn't wait in that line after eating there. You can't even customized the egg on the sandwich, so even though I prefer scrambled, I had to get the hard cooked as shown below. Peddalin Pig in Boone NC I went here hoping to run into an old friend, but he wasn't there. The food was fantastic, though. I would go back even if I didn't know him! It was so good. There were leftovers for breakfast Sticky Boy Kitchen in Boone, NC Now, THIS is a bagel sandwich on a pumpkin chocolate chip bagel! I would happily go back My favorite lunch of the whole trip Homemade bagel sandwich with chips and ginger ale
  13. Sqeeza's Country Kitchen in Elizabeth City, NC It was pretty good. Service wasn't fast, but I kind of expected it in a place like this. It seemed like the sandwiches were faster. Maybe next time. In the meantime, those mashed potatoes? SO GOOD. Slightly lumpy and delicious. The chicken was piping hot. The coleslaw was standard.
  14. It's really late, but I'm here with an update Here's the whole what I got on the left and the salami I bought on the right All set up! I bought some local bread to eat with it and some everything flavored chips! Just the cheese and salami Just the bread and sides I had some with salami, some alone, some with fig spread. They were all really good, but I think the package was mislabeled. There was no herbed gouda, just the regular gouda (which is good cause I love gouda). The white cheese was more brittle than expected. It reminded me of swiss, but didn't taste like it, thankfully. It was possibly the monterey jack? I don't know what the other yellow cheese was, but it was tasty, too. It's something I would definitely buy again.
  15. NC State Fair is coming. I've yet to visit in 12 years. Maybe this year is when I will.....
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