thanksgiving tablescapes

I hope all of you have a wonderful day with friends and family! Here are a few Thanksgiving tablescapes that I really like:

Top to bottom: Martha Stewart, Unknown, Design Sponge


the happy pig cafe - pensacola, florida

photo via thehappypig.com
Yesterday at The Happy Pig the 'Pot Luck' Stew/Soup of the day was red beans & rice with smoked sausage. Count me in! It was spicy with a hint of sweetness and the corn muffin made my jaw drop! 
The sides that came with the pulled pork dinner weren't anything special but the pork sure was. Their homemade sauces were also pretty special, especially the house barbecue and Alabama white mixed together.
I was going to stop after the red beans and rice but the Burrito Enchilada with Green Chili Sauce caught my eye. It was packed to the brim with pulled pork, rice, black bean salsa, jalapenos and just the right amount of cheese. 

All in all, The Happy Pig Cafe will leave you as happy as a little pink pig and you will definitely want to go back for more between the food, service and atmosphere!

One more thing - Don't forget about the 3rd Annual "Smokin' in the Square" BBQ Cookoff, March 2-3 in Olde Seville Square. I wonder if The Happy Pig Cafe will be there? 

The Happy Pig Cafe
200 Alcaniz Street
Pensacola, Florida 32502
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cactus flower café - pensacola, florida

fresh fish taco with rice and black beans
The East Hill location of Cactus Flower Café is always bustling with loyal customers. Their California-style Mexican cuisine is always fresh, made from scratch and their staff is as nice as they come. The prices are great, especially considering the enormous portions - no one ever leaves hungry, or thirsty!

They are located just south of the 12th Avenue Tunnel of Trees which is one of my favorite Pensacola landmarks! See why?
photo via Mona Hura
Since it's such a popular choice for Pensacola diners be prepared for a little bit of a wait or go ahead and make a reservation in advance, they welcome that! If you like to wing it, I've found the best times to avoid the crowds are right at 11, when they open, or later in the evening around 8.

I usually practically always:

1. Ask for a booth along the wall in the main dining room, it's the best spot in the house! 

2. Order a carafe of the California sangria and try to pick out the different flavors. If sangria isn't your thing they have a great wine selection.

3. Get started with an order of the fresh guacamole and a small cup of the chicken tortilla soup. Save the last of your broth to drizzle over your rice! You can thank me later. 

4. I can't get enough of their fish tacos, so be it lunch or dinner that's what I'm having. The staff highly recommends these too! At lunch there are two and at dinner three plus rice and beans - more than enough to share!

5. I've never made it to the dessert phase, but I hear their flan is out of this world good. I think I'll have to go in just for that real soon!

I've been going to Cactus Flower regularly over the past four years and the food quality has never wavered. The servers don't linger around the tables, so it makes the service come off a bit slow, but it definitely allows for plenty of uninterrupted conversation time. Also, there are no awkward moments staring at your server as they rattle off the daily night specials or big ticket items. I find it refreshing and laid-back. On the flip side though if you want to know their honest opinion about a dish all you have to do is ask. They are happy to help! 


Cactus Flower Café - East Hill 
3425 North 12th Avenue
Pensacola, Florida 32503

Cactus Flower Café - West Pensacola
3309 Gulf Beach Highway
Pensacola, Florida 32501

Cactus Flower Café - Navarre 
8725 Ortega Park Drive
Navarre, Florida 32566

Cactus Flower Café - Gulf Shores
3800 Gulf Shores Parkway
Gulf Shores, Alabama 36542

Cactus Flower Café - Dothan
5412 Montgomery Highway
Dothan, Alabama 36303

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tuna steak salad

Well, friends. It's time for y'all to meet one of my favorite recipes of all time. Ina Garten's Tuna Steak Salad, slightly adapted by moi. I must tell you though that I didn't stumble upon this jewel, a friend made it a few months ago and it has stuck with me ever since.

And now, without further adieu, I challenge you to go grab some tuna and get to work on the recipe below. I'm telling you now, you're going to crave this everyday!