This post is going to be about food. Yummy food.
First, today our first grade student teacher had the lady who cooks on Channel 5, I think her name is Carol but I could be wrong, and that's awful because I actually met her and talked with her for a few minutes - my how the memory goes. Anyway, she had her come and cook for all the first grade teachers (and I saw a few non-first grade people in there, too). When I first looked in the teachers' lounge, the table was beautifully set with iced tea with what looked like mint leaves poking out of it and plates and everything.
This lady cooked what sounded like a gourmet meal on a hotplate!!!! I can't cook a regular meal on a full stove without something going wrong. Everyone seemed to really enjoy the meal and I thought it was very thoughtful of Karen (the student teacher) to think of this for the teachers. What a lovely, gracious thing to arrange.
Now, I want to tell you about my favorite new restaurant. Notice it's not my new favorite restaurant. I still have my favs like: El Chico's, Mercardo Juarez, New Yorker, Jason's and the like but, this restaurant just opened up by us and the first time I went there I really wasn't that impressed. On thinking back, really, what can a place do with a turkey sandwich? I mean, really? I didn't even give them a chance.
Well, all that has changed and now I am addicted to Panera Bread. It's on N. Collins where my former favorite restaurant for Saturday/Sunday morning breakfast used to sit proudly, serving its delicious pancakes, eggs, hashbrowns, toast and other delicious morsels. Now, I probably should harbor some ill-will toward it since they smashed down my precious Country Kitchen to make way for it. However, they have found a place in my tummy.
The first time I went there, as I said, I had a turkey sandwich. Not a big deal at all. If you like turkey sandwiches, you'll probably love theirs. It's just that I wasn't that impressed with it. However, while Mumsey was here, she said she wanted to try it. Oddly, I gave it another chance. This time I really went out on a limb and tried completely new things. Well, mostly new things. I tried the tomato and mozzarella salad and some sort of variation of a turkey sandwich. They had me at hello with that salad. I'm not so sure I'm not addicted. I think about that thing and my mouth starts watering.
When Mumsey wanted to go out again, later in the week, she wanted to go somewhere different (even though the strawberry salad she had was "delicious" in her words). Her main objection was the fact that it served Pepsi instead of Coke. I told her we could get it to go and have a coke at home (well, a Dr. Pepper for me). She relented and a new favorite for me was born.
When I went, I knew I would have the tomato and mozzarella salad, but what to have with it? Right now they have a deal where you can get 1/2 a salad and 1/2 a cup of soup or 1/2 sandwich, mix it, match it, whatever you like to do.
Why I asked about their chicken salad, I'll never know. I don't eat chicken salad. Never have, didn't think I ever would. But I asked what was in it and the girl knew the right thing to say, "No chunky things like grapes or celery or anything like that". I knew we were on the right track. She asked if I would like a sample. Oh my goodness, a sample! I don't have to commit, I can just taste! "Yes!" I said. She brought a little cup and when I put that creamy chickeny goodness in my mouth, I knew I was home - sandwichly speaking.
I have now had that combo twice and am looking forward to having it again. I don't know when that will be as it is a little pricey (I mean, we are talking about 1/2 a salad and 1/2 of a sandwich here) but, the good thing is that you don't have to cut, chop, marinate, cook or in other way even be in your kitchen unless you bring it home and need a plate.
I would make this suggestion. Eat it there. The portions are bigger. I felt a little disappointed at the portion of salad that both Mumsey and I got. She got the full Strawberry salad to go and it was about as big as my 1/2 salad that I ate there. However, it was still mighty tasty, and, really, do I need those big portions? Well, yeah, I do.