• Chicago —> Des Moines

    November 12, 2012

    Greetings from Des Moines! I had a few delays during my travels (crazy strong winds in Chicago + brake issues on the plane), but I eventually made it, safe and sound!

    Lunch

    When I arrived in Chicago, I was more than ready for lunch. I ended up buying a salad with chicken and roasted veggies and an iced decaf Americano with crème brulee syrup.

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    My salad wasn’t as satisfying as I had hoped (not enough chicken or roasted veggies), so I also ate a Larabar that I brought from home.

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    Snack

    My layover in Chicago was 2.5 hours and then we sat on the plane to Des Moines for another 1.5 hours, so I got hungry again and broke into a snack that I packed, which was a banana with a packet of chocolate coconut peanut butter. I just squirted the peanut butter on the banana as I ate it. Surprisingly, I didn’t make a total mess!

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    I arrived in Des Moines around 6:30 PM, hopped in a cab, and high-tailed it to the hotel. I had dinner plans at 7:00 PM with a few of the folks judging the Ultimate Potato Recipe Contest, so I pretty much exploded in my hotel room and then boogied to the restaurant.

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    Thankfully, our dinner reservation was at Centro and it was just a short walk from the hotel. I was only about 10 minutes late and no one seemed to mind. A couple of other people had minor travel issues as well, so they were understanding.

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    To start, we shared some bruschetta and fried Brussels sprouts among the table.

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    The fried Brussels sprouts were to die for and we ate every single last bite of them! Fried Brussels sprouts = love.

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    During dinner, I ordered a glass of white wine, which tasted especially wonderful after a long day of travel.

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    As an appetizer, I ordered the spinach salad, which came with bacon, Asiago cheese, tomatoes, mushrooms, and a ridiculously delicious warm bacon salad dressing.

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    For my entrée, I ordered the seared sea scallops, which came in a lemon butter sauce with Brussels sprouts, pancetta, red onions, and roasted hazelnuts. Holy goodness, it was amazing. Actually, the entire dinner was amazing, and I left Centro stuffed to the gills. So much good food!

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    Flip Belt Giveaway

    Thanks to everyone who entered the giveaway to win a Flip Belt. It’s a really cool product, right? Here’s your winner:

    Katie M

    My favorite piece of running gear is my Garmin. I love being able to see how far and fast I’ve run. I don’t obsessively check it, but it’s just nice to be able to easily quantify my workouts.

    Congrats, Katie! Please email me at tina@carrotsncake.com with your full name and mailing address to claim your prize.

    If you didn’t win and you’re still interested in purchasing a Flip Belt, they’re on sale for a few more hours!

    Question of the Day

    What’s your favorite fried food?

    Mine is definitely Brussels sprouts!

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    { 78 comments… read them below or add one }

    Kristen @ Happy Running Mama November 12, 2012 at 6:08 pm

    Fried brussel sprouts sounds AMAZING!!! I love any and all vegetables but usually roast mine. I have a recipe for roasted brussel sprouts with maple syrup and hazelnuts that is to-die-for. Now I’m hungry again… :)

    Reply

    luv what you do November 12, 2012 at 6:38 pm

    I’ve never tried fried brussel sprouts, but I would love to!
    My favorite fried food is fried pickles or maybe fried mac n cheese!

    Reply

    Nancy~The Wife of a Dairyman November 12, 2012 at 8:27 pm

    Brussels Sprouts are a Fave for me as well….roasted with olive oil, Kosher salt, pepper and bacon….Yum. But my favorite fried food has got to be Calamari, which we have plenty of out here in CA….I love it as an app, on a salad or as an entree….so good! Cheers!

    Reply

    Kristen @ Change of Pace November 12, 2012 at 9:09 pm

    I wonder if you could make those brussels sprouts like those crispy curried sweet potato coins….??? Worth a try :)

    Reply

    Sarah November 12, 2012 at 9:23 pm

    I lived in Iowa for 5 years. Centro was a highlight of those 5 years.

    Reply

    kelsea November 12, 2012 at 9:32 pm

    Just curious if you had any issues w/ the PB packet at security. I always see them collecting jars of PB so I never thought to try the packets!

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    Tina November 12, 2012 at 11:11 pm

    Nope, no issues! :)

    Reply

    anna-marie@beautyandthebeets November 12, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    I just had to laugh- Monica from Run Eat Repeat took a very similar picture of her hotel in Richmond on her Sabra Tastemakers Dinner post- you guys must have stayed at the same brand hotel- same angle-same decor- only difference is a picture on the wall…I don’t know why I thought this was funny- I just remember seeing that picture before- even though it is two separate pictures in two separate places LOL

    Reply

    Angela @ Beauty in Strength November 12, 2012 at 10:29 pm

    Those scallops look amazing! What a great dinner after a flight.

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    Sara November 12, 2012 at 10:34 pm

    LOVE LOVE LOVE Centro’s warm bacon dressing! Glad you got to experience it!

    Reply

    Gina @ Health, Love, and Chocolate November 13, 2012 at 12:49 am

    I pretty much always do the banana + nut butter packet deal when I’m traveling, but unlike you I always seem to make a huge mess…

    Reply

    Bree@ToParisWithMyLove November 13, 2012 at 3:35 am

    I bet fried Brussels would be tasty!
    The fried foods I like are really bad for you.

    Reply

    Sara @my less serious life November 13, 2012 at 6:22 am

    fried brussels? yes, please.

    Reply

    Sierra @ Posh Meets Pavement November 13, 2012 at 7:34 am

    Chicago weather made a huge swing and it looks like you got caught in it. It was beautiful over the weekend and then all the sudden it’s like 30 degrees and threatening to snow.

    Fried food? Oh man, plantains and polenta have to be up there for me. I also have an obsession with this tempura coconut ice cream at a restaurant in my hometown. It is a scoop of ice cream, covered in vanilla pound cake, and flash fried. It is one of my favorite desserts!

    Reply

    Shaunna@mamas13minutemile November 13, 2012 at 12:14 pm

    I totally missed the potato post saying you would be in Des MOines! I live there! :)

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    Christina @ The Beautiful Balance November 13, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    I am not big on fried food because it absolutely kills my stomach, but IF I do it is more tempura battered veggies. YUM! Glad you made it safely to Des Moines.

    Reply

    Genki Kitty November 13, 2012 at 7:44 pm

    Fried brussel sprouts! Oh my! Now I’m jealous.

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    Karla November 13, 2012 at 10:50 pm

    Yay for Centro! I hope you enjoyed your time in Iowa, Tina. We’d love to have you back soon! :)

    Reply

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