Hangry Ohana Restaurant Review

Todd and myself made a trip up to the Parker area this past week to drop something off to a friend, so we decided to try a new restaurant while we were in the area.  Todd used to participate karate tournaments in Parker, so he had been to a few different restaurants up there in the past, and we wanted to try somewhere new to both of us. We both love Hawaiian food, and BBQ, and from what we could see, their menu was an interesting cross between those two styles of cuisine. The owners started with a food truck and grew their business into a restaurant in Parker. Since, we are avid followers and supporters of local businesses, this place seemed right up our alley! In an unassuming strip mall in Parker, Colorado, this little gem is hiding in plain sight!

Let’s take our meal piece by piece, I’ll start with the bacon fried rice…that is right, you did not read that wrong, I said BACON FRIED RICE! Lots of flavor, not greasy, and super delicious! I got the kalbi short ribs, along with the fried rice and macaroni salad. The ribs were perfectly cooked with the right amount of flavor in the marinade.  That macaroni salad was really good as well, not overly mayo-y (yes, I made up that word), and not bland like most I’ve tried. Todd ordered the mix plate with brisket and kalua pork, along with the fried rice and tater tots. Both of Todd’s selections were juicy and full of flavor. I capped off this meal with the pineapple soft serve, which was HEAVENLY!

There were several dishes on the menu I want to try on our next visit. For example, the Kahuku Garlic Shrimp, along with their Yakisoba Bowl with BBQ Chicken. Todd wanted to try the Teri Beef and the Poke Bowl. The only downside to this place is that it is in Parker, and not in Colorado Springs…we strongly recommend you check this place out the next time you are in the area, or even better yet, make a trip to Parker to check it out! And when you do, make sure to leave a review and like their Facebook page.


https://hangryohana.com/

10471 S Parker Rd., Parker, CO 80134

(720) 287-2516


https://www.facebook.com/HangryOhana/

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Frugal February – Part 4

Even in Frugal February, one might feel the urge to splurge…kind of like the need for speed, but with money! We have been very well behaved this month! We stuck to our guns about eating out less, taking out lunches to work, taking snacks to work, and we finally cut the cord with cable.  This past week, a friend of ours was having a little birthday celebration in honor of her 30th birthday (Happy Birthday Melissa!), so we used the rare night out as an impromptu date night. We were heading downtown, so we decided to try Fat Sully’s Pizza on Tejon in downtown Colorado Springs. It had been on our list to try since before it opened in Colorado Springs and we had been hearing so many good things about Fat Sully’s Pizza from our friends who had tried it, it seemed like perfect timing! We expected to spend around $30 for our date night dinner, and we were WRONG!!! Our bill was $20 and some change (before tip…always tip your servers!). We each got a slice, with one meat topping, an order of their Garlic “Not”, and an iced tea for Todd, I drank water.  The pizza slices were good, and the slices were HUGE! The problem I normally have with pizza is the sauce, my mid-30s brought me heartburn when I eat tomato based sauces…and the part of me that is convinced I am Italian, is just heart-sick over it! I, personally, rarely eat pizza because of it, and when I do, I normally request they go easy on the sauce. But this time I didn’t, I guess I was feeling kind of rebellious! Thankfully, the sauce was good, and not overly acidic, and there was no heartburn! Woo hoo! Happy dance! Fat Sully’s Pizza ranks high on my best pizza list. However, even with the really good pizza, the best part of the meal was the garlic bread…I was in fat kid heaven! The butter! The garlic! The parmesan cheese! And, of course, the bread…which was more of a pizza crust with all this deliciousness on top.  I ended up letting Todd finish my slice, which he was perfectly okay with doing, and I tried to finish the bread. I failed, but I went down swinging! That was the BEST garlic bread I’ve ever had. And to give you a point of reference for how much I love garlic bread, I’m going to tell you a little story…back home in the Bay Area in Northern California, you can buy a Colombo sourdough bread garlic bread in the grocery stores. I grew up eating it, it was my absolute favorite. On one of my trips back to the Bay, I discovered a Colombo bread stand in one of the terminals at the Oakland Airport…I purchased TEN loaves of this garlic bread to bring home with me, and I was limited to only 10 loaves because it was all I could carry. I have a deep love of garlic bread, and it is not lightly that I state that the Garlic “Not” from Fat Sully’s Pizza is the best garlic bread I’ve had. Also, just a side note…I may not have the official name 100% correct, so please feel free to comment if I got it wrong!

We will definitely return to Fat Sully’s Pizza to try the other items on the menu, specifically, we have heard that the chicken wings were really good. But for now, we were very happy with our low cost date night, really good pizza, and some amazing garlic bread! You don’t have to have ton of money to treat yourselves to a night out, just do a little research and see what options are out there. A lot of restaurants offer happy hours, weekly specials, or special tasting nights.  Make sure to join the mailing lists for your favorite restaurants and like their Facebook & Instagram pages. Deals will pop up all the time, you just have to know where to look!

https://www.facebook.com/FatSullysPizza//

What was the best deal you found this week???

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Frugal February – Part 2

Frugal February continues in our month long series about eating good and saving money. In our day to day life, have been focusing on eating dinner at home more often, and making sure we take our lunches to work. Valentine’s day could put quite a dent in a budget, if you are not careful! Valentine’s day is on a Thursday this year, which happens to be our day off, that means we have the whole day together. However, we do not have a ton of money to be frivolous and financially reckless, so we will probably spend the day together, probably watching movies and talking about our future. The last two years, when it came time to celebrate Valentine’s day, we splurged on really good steak from a local butcher, fresh & locally grown produce, and some sort of potatoes…yes, I know potatoes are produce, but a meal with steak is not complete without potatoes, and deserves a special mention. This year on the other hand, the budget is tighter, and our goals are bigger than ever before. However, budget or no budget, we love good food, and our best date nights have been in our own kitchen. This year, we are both working our side gigs on our days off, so we made our steak dinner a little early, it wasn’t intentional, but sometimes you find an deal too good to pass up! About a week ago, we were doing our shopping at the local King Soopers, when we decided to have our Valentine’s day dinner a little early. In the meat section, there is always an end cap with their sale items, and on this trip they had New York strip steak on sale.  We got 2 steaks for right around $11. We also got a bag of baby potatoes for $2.99, and a few zucchini for about $2, so for right around $16, we had a delicious dinner, filled with great conversation and lots of love.
This weeks post isn’t about how to make a romantic dinner, but rather about how to shop for a romantic dinner for two. I have always been a frugal shopper, and the one thing I have learned, especially in the past 5 years, is that cheap and quality are not mutually exclusive. If you know how to shop, and know how much you can spend, you can make a beautiful dinner that tastes as good as it looks. When shopping the grocery store on a budget, I always make a list of what we want to cook for the next week. I go through the weekly ad to find the deals, however, there are more deals in the store.  What we put on the list isn’t necessarily what we end up buying. We start our shopping trips by getting the things that are non-negotiable, the things we have to have, like toilet paper and toothpaste. Our next stop is the meat department, in every store they have designated places that hold the specials, normally end caps, not on the back wall. Once we know what the proteins will be for the week, we can move on to the sides and veggies. I always look at the name brand side dishes on sale, and then look for the store brand version of the same dish, because the store brand will (almost always) be cheaper. In our house, we always have potatoes, and we also do a lot of zucchini and asparagus.  Stock up when you can, for instance, we went to the store last night, and they had some pot roast on sale, we got a decent size one for less than $7, got home and put it in the freezer.

When you know how to shop the ad, rather than just a premade shopping list, you can come up with some excellent meals that has better quality and tastes better than anything you can get from a drive-thru!

Side note…if you want a little history on Valentine’s day…

https://www.history.com/topics/valentines-day/history-of-valentines-day-2

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Burger Time

As I type the title of this blog, the lyrics from MC Hammer’s “U Can’t Touch This” rolled through my head. I mean, I’m from the Oak town, and a good burger makes me say “Oh my Lord!” When we go out on our foodie adventures, we are always on the hunt for an excellent burger. Todd has talked endlessly about wanting to make a trip to Bobby’s Burger Palace in Las Vegas or Michael Symon’s B Spot Burgers in Cleveland. Everyone has a their favorite burger place. When we asked our friends, we got all kinds of answers. In Colorado Springs, a long time favorite was Conway’s Red Top, before it closed. We heard about a place called Blake’s Lotaburger in Albuquerque, New Mexico, a place called Hinkles in Madison, Indiana, and a place called St. John’s Bar & Grill in Sunnyvale, California. Most burger lovers will ramble on and on, affectionately about their burger mecca.

My favorite burger is from Nation’s Giant Burgers back home in the Bay Area in Northern California. They are just simple burgers, no crazy toppings, no fancy buns, just a huge, juicy burger. I always chose to get mine topped with mayo, lettuce, tomato, cheddar cheese, and bacon. Todd’s favorite burger spot is Bingo Burger. He is a lover of green chiles, and they mix the Pueblo green chiles into the meat mixture. It doesn’t hurt that Bingo Burger is a Colorado owned business, and they use locally-sourced ingredients. When Todd and myself started dating, his sister, Brenda, told us about a place on the westside of Colorado Springs to try for a good burger. We did, and we loved it! It was called The Dive, in an old converted house near Old Colorado City. Sadly The Dive closed in 2018, and now we must find a new burger spot, so feel free to send us your recommendations!

The beauty of a burger is that there are endless configurations. Different combinations of meat, different toppings, and different types of buns. You could have a burger made off 100% ground chuck, topped with pepper jack cheese, avocado, and tomato, on a sesame seed bun. Or you could have a burger made with bison meat, topped with lettuce and caramelized onions, on a potato roll. There are endless options!

Todd and myself decided to try a multitude of burgers, well not a multitude, but three different kinds of burgers to decide which we liked best. We tried an all ground beef patty, a 50/50 mixture with ground beef and ground pork, and a 50/50 mixture of ground beef and ground lamb. All the meat was from King Soopers, the ground lamb was organic, and the ground beef was 80/20. Each patty was seasoned the same way, with salt, pepper, and Old Market All-Purpose Seasoning from Savory Spice (located in downtown Colorado Springs). Each patty was also cooked in a cast iron skillet, and served on a buttered and toasted potato roll. And, since a burger is always a better as a cheeseburger, each burger had a small piece of Monterey Jack and Colby cheeses. Todd seasoned and shaped each burger. We did smaller than normal patties, just a little bigger than a slider. We tried each mixture and here is what we decided. Our least favorite was the all ground beef patty, it was good, but nothing spectacular. Second place, goes to the ground beef and ground pork mixture. Todd normally makes our burgers with this mixture, and it is more affordable than the beef & lamb mixture. The ground beef and ground pork mixture makes for a nice, juicy burger, with a lot of flavor. Our favorite of the three was the ground beef and ground lamb mixture. There was a boldness from the lamb, and a rich flavor that was unmatched by the other two. Even though it wasn’t as juicy, the flavor was amazing. Todd said that the ground beef and ground lamb was his hands down favorite, but next time he uses the ground lamb in a burger, he will try some different seasonings, maybe a little more Mediterranean flavors.

In the Low Class Foodies house, burgers are a beautiful thing, and we will honor them as such. After our little experiment, one thing we both agreed on, was that the only thing missing from these delicious burger bites, was bacon! Now we must decide which bacon is best on a burger…but that is for another post!

And just for a little fun…

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Mom’s Poor Man’s Stroganoff

This coming Wednesday will mark 12 years since my mom passed away. I miss her terribly, every day. When I want to feel close to my mom, I start cooking. Food was always an expression of love in our house. The kitchen was the heart of our home, full of joy, sadness, laughter, and tears. Most of my memories, with my family take place in the kitchen. My mom was not a fancy cook, she cooked out of the necessity of feeding her family. She worked multiple jobs, she was extremely active with our church, and she had very little free time, so cooking dinner was a duty, not a task she loved. Most of our dinners were quickly made meals, recipes from the branded cookbooks you picked up at the register in the grocery store. There was the cheeseburger pie, this was the dish I used to frost with sour cream and cover in salt to make it edible. Her burgers were always cooked in the oven and dry, and if they were served close enough to pay day there was a little bit of charred bacon on top of the burger. I could never forget the random dinner she made once of cheap ramen noodles, bone-in chicken thighs, and a weird cream sauce, I have absolutely no words to explain this dish. These dinners are things I never want to eat as an adult. But there were still a few dishes she made, that I loved. These are the dishes I’ve made for Todd. I have made him stand in the kitchen with me while I cooked so I could tell him stories about my mom,whom he never got to meet. I’m still bummed that I never got her recipe for her tuna casserole, or her party punch. But I did learn to make her version of beef stroganoff. Traditionally, beef stroganoff is a fancy dish, a dish that could be found on the menu of the Russian Tea Room in New York in the 1930s. My mother’s version was not fancy, but it was a staple in our home during my teen years, and really simple to make. This past week, I decided to make my mom’s stroganoff for my lunches to take to work. There is something magical about any dish that can provide the fuel needed to get through the work day, and provides one with some beautiful memories of a loved one.

This is a super easy dish to make, and doesn’t take very long to prepare. First things first, we put our stroganoff over rice. Most people use egg noodles, which is perfectly fine, but I prefer rice. I made the rice in our Instant Pot. Most recipes for rice in the Instant Pot call for a 1 to 1 ratio, I however do 1 ½ cups of water to 1 cup of rice. I do this partially because of the altitude here in Colorado and I like really moist rice (I think this makes a big difference, especially when reheating in a microwave). I cooked the 2 cups of rice, with 3 cups of water on manual for 8 minutes, and then did natural release for 15 minutes before manually releasing the last bit of pressure. As for the sauce, I choose to use ground turkey, my mom used ground beef, it is a matter of preference. When seasoning the meat, I use granulated garlic, black pepper, sea salt, onion powder, italian seasoning, and minced garlic. In the pan, add oil (I used avocado oil), just once around the pan. Season the meat to your taste, I use the garlic heavily, I can always hear my mom telling me to add just a bit more garlic. Cook the turkey through and drain on a plate with paper towels. Put the meat back in the pan once drained, add 1 cup of sour cream, a 10.5 oz can of cream of mushroom soup, and a drained 13.25 oz can of sliced mushrooms (you can use fresh mushrooms that you saute or less mushrooms if your prefer). Mix all together on medium heat. Add more seasoning, to make sure it is seasoned all the way through. Let the sauce come to a low boil, stirring occasionally. Spoon over rice, or noodles, your choice.

It wasn’t until several months after my mom’s passing that I began to realize, that we didn’t keep any of her cookbooks. I wish I had thought of going through her stacks of recipes. Passing on family recipes to the next generation is a beautiful way to share your family’s history. I’ve watched my sister pass on our family’s food traditions to her boys. They love our mom’s lasagna toss dinner, that my sister makes for the boys, they call it Diego’s Pasta, it has kept my mom’s legacy alive through pasta, tomato sauce, and cheese!

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Sandy’s Restaurant – Colorado Springs Review

We love going out for breakfast, I mean LOVE going out for breakfast. Especially, a small, locally owned place, with good, hearty food, that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg! Sandy’s Restaurant in Colorado Springs, is that place for us. We have never been disappointed, and we love the cozy feel we get every time we go in. We have been in several times since we found Sandy’s a couple years ago, and it is our favorite breakfast spot close to home. Most of their menu is homemade, and it tastes as such. This last time we went in, on New Year’s Day, I tried something new, I got the Chili & Cheese omelet with hash browns. The omelet comes in two sizes, the full size has 6 eggs, and a small size. I got the small size, the waitress called it the half-size, so I assume it has 3 eggs, but don’t quote me. It was smothered in their homemade red chili and, of course, cheese! The hash browns were perfectly cooked, and golden brown. Todd got a create-your-own omelet with bacon, ham, sausage, cheese, and smothered in their green chili. He also substituted the hash browns with french toast. Every time we go to Sandy’s he gets something smothered in green chili, he describes it as having good flavor and mildly spicy (he likes spicy foods). He says it has just the right amount of heat for breakfast. The food is always good at Sandy’s, and the atmosphere is comforting and welcoming. We will most certainly be back, over and over again. If you are in the area, swing by and try them out. Sandy’s is open early, and open for breakfast and lunch. They are located at 6940 Space Village Avenue, near the Peterson AFB North gate.

As big supporters of local businesses, one of our favorite things about Sandy’s is that they have been a part of the local community in Colorado Springs since the 1970s. When their regulars walk in, the waitresses know them by name and know where they like to sit. I could hear the conversations between the people who worked there and their customers, and it sounded more like old friends than a business conversation. We happily recommend trying out Sandy’s if you are in the area. It can get busy, so it may be a bit of a wait, but it is certainly worth the wait. You can check out Sandy’s at their website at https://sandys-restaurant.business.site/ and you can find them on Facebook.

Check the gallery for more pictures from our New Year’s day breakfast!

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The Start of the Low Class Foodies

Hindsight is 20/20 they say.  If I had known that Todd and myself would end up married, I might have seen how food would play such a large part in our life together. We met in June of 2008, at the electronics store in Colorado Springs, Colorado, where we both worked. We dated occasionally, nothing formal, most of the time we would just order pizza and watch the Food Network. Six years after we met, we started dating, for real this time. Our first formal date was to Flat Irons restaurant. The date was simple and comfortable, just food and conversation, and we have been eating and talking ever since.  Currently, we both work day jobs in retail, and we both work for locally owned, Colorado based businesses. Because of this, we love supporting other locally owned businesses and restaurants and we are always searching for new places to eat and shop. We found some gems around the state of Colorado over the past 4 years, since we have been together.

On Saturday, September 12, 2015, after a long day at work and a dinner of barbeque, Todd proposed, and I said yes! When we started planning the wedding,and we knew food would play a big role in our big day, and we spent hours discussing all the little, delicious details. We wanted our wedding to be a reflection of who we are, and what we love.  We had a silver tray of bacon passed during cocktail hour, we served tacos from Yolanda’s Tacos (in Castle Rock, Colorado) for dinner, and instead of the traditional cake, we had an ice cream truck to serve dessert. Two days after our wedding, we took off to Crested Butte, Colorado for our honeymoon. The food adventure we had in Crested Butte was amazing! From the pizza at Secret Stash, to the tamales at Teocalli Tamale, and we have to mention the hot donuts at Niky’s Mini Donuts, everything was amazing. Now, we spend many Sundays, trying new places to eat around town.  And in the two years we have been married, we have tried some incredible locally owned restaurants. Some of our favorites include, Sandy’s Restaurant, Mountain Shadows, Fiesta Jalisco, and Josh & John’s Ice Cream. We also love to cook, and try new ingredients. When we were in Breckenridge, this past October, while our friends were in the souvenir store, we made our way to the local spice store to pick up our own kind of souvenir, Breckenridge Spice Rub…delicious by the way!

In March of 2018, while on a drive to Denver to celebrate Todd’s 40th birthday, we started the dream to start this blog. We wanted to share our love of food, and each other, with everyone. We wanted to give you a place where you can come and learn a new recipe, watch us fail at something we found on Pinterest, follow our journey for perfection of a beloved dish, and learn about some incredible restaurants. We plan on showing you some of our favorite restaurants and recipes. We hope you follow us on our journey. It is always a tasty ride!

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