Guilt Free Fun

A long, long work week ended with a trip to downtown St Pete for some of my favorites local goodies that felt indulgent but were just plain good and wonderful. Cooking in my own kitchen is fun but I've really missed those wonderful teas from Pom Pom's on Central Avenue. The daily special when I stopped in was a delicious Mahi sandwich with a perfectly spiced mayo spread of on sourdough with crunchy Asian slaw. The tea was blackberry with ginger and just had to come with plenty of ice. It was a nice touch when our server thanked us for supporting the locals and that's the name of the game these days.

Then came Valhalla Bakery, also on Central at 2462 Central Ave. They've done a fantastic job of decorating their new space and the bakery case just begs for a taste of everything. But my eyes went right to the Chocolate Chip Banana Bars that really should be shared - or at least split in half for twice the fun. You can see how generous the size is from the picture above. I chose the latter and my co-enabler Ashley and I headed down to the waterfront and found a bench on Demen's Landing to enjoy the view - and the bakery. Nice to have Valhalla open in St Pete!

I like my fizzy drinks without the calories and this is a new one. AHA has a number of sparkling waters with very nice flavorings. This one looked a little different but was really great. No calories, no sweeteners or sodium but a little bit of a kick in the Black Cherry with Coffee! Seriously good and I keep it in stock in Ann Kelly's Kitchen.

Speaking of cherries, take advantage of the season before they are gone again. Pretty decent prices right now and it’s hard to stop at just a few. They never last all that long my house, so get some soon!

And finally it’s another simple pleasure but one I just live without and that’s navel oranges. I wish I knew why but I just can’t get enough right now. Must be the weather! But I don’t waste the peel as well - very nice when you add the zest to blueberry muffins, coffee cake...you get the idea!

Who else should I visit locally? I love your suggestions and if your’re a business tag me so I can drop by. It’s good to be able to sit, sip and nibble again for Ann Kelly’s Kitchen.

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