Joe’s Stone Crab

Joe's Stone CrabFor more than 100 years, no visit to Miami has been complete without stopping in at Joe’s Stone Crab.

The restaurant was opened in 1913, by Joe Weiss, who began his Miami Beach career by cooking at Smith’s Casino. Joe’s is the top buyer of Florida stone crab claws, and it plays a significant role in the industry, influencing the wholesale price and financing many crabbers.

Even though stone crabs are their most famous dish now, fish was served, rather than crabs, when the restaurant first opened.

Joe’s Stone Crab is often visited by politicians, actors, and athletes. The restaurant is reputedly referenced in Ian Fleming’s novel “Goldfinger” as “Bill’s on the Beach” in which James Bond ate the best meal he had ever eaten in his life.


There are two sections to Joe’s – the Take Away section, although you can eat in too, and theJoe's Take Away main restaurant that offers a lunch and dinner menu.

Joe’s Take Away, is the best of both worlds. The Take Away is casual dining serving three meals a day, 7 days a week with a coffee bar and private room, JoAnns, for special occasions.

There’s a selection of breakfasts and speciality dishes available starting from 7:30am and yes Stone Crab is available for breakfast if you wish.

They have seasonal opening hours that coincide with the Stone Crabbing season (Oct 15 to May 15). When the season is over, Joe’s Take Away closes and the main restaurant only offers a reduced dinner menu available in the evening.

They also offer the famous authentic Key Lime Pie. You can buy them by the slice or alternatively take a whole pie away. This is a great option as you can freeze it until you need a piece (if it lasts that long!).

Interesting Facts about the Florida Stone Crab

The Florida Stone Crab is a delicacy known around the world. Its sweet taste and perfect texture, however, means its popularity has spawned a number of impersonators, including Pacific Rock Crab, Baja Stone Crab, Red Rock Crab and Japanese Crab (to name a few).

Select your fresh Stone Crabs
Select your fresh Stone Crabs

Because these non-Florida Stone Crabs don’t have the benefit of the warm tropical waters of the Keys and Gulf, they are stringier in texture and much gamier in taste. That’s why at Joe’s Stone Crab they only serve the real thing.

Florida Stone Crabs are found along the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts but are commercially harvested almost entirely in Florida. In the wild, adult Stone Crabs are easily recognized by their oval body and two large claws.

The adult body of the Stone Crab is dark brownish red, more or less mottled and spotted with dusky gray. An interesting feature about the Stone Crab is the mark on the inside of the large claw that resembles a thumb print.

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Miami Street Names

A Brief Guide to Miami’s Street Names

Collins Avenue
John Collins was a farmer and land developer who built the first wooden bridge from Miami to Miami Beach in 1913

Flagler Street

Miami Beach Celebrated 100 years this year (2015)
Miami Beach Celebrated its 100th Birthday this year (2015)

Henry Flagler’s East Coast Railway made connections to Miami a reality. Before 1896 there was no easy way to move goods or people out of Miami. The railroad arrived in April of that year. Henry Flagler is known as the “father” of Miami and his name pops up in many places in South Florida.

Biscayne Blvd
This street takes it name from the Biscayne Bay

No longer connected - a section of the old railway bridge going to Key West, FL
No longer connected – a section of the old railway bridge going to Key West, FL. Henry Flagler’s East Coast Railway made connections possible. It’s a shame it has long since disappeared.

Brickell Avenue

William and Mary Brickell owned a trading post on the south side of the Miami River. In the late 1800’s everything south of the river was called Brickell for many years.

Julia Tuttle Causeway
If Henry Flager is considered the “father” of Miami then Julia Tuttle is the “mother” of Miami. She gave Henry Flagler a hard time and persuaded him to extend his rail line 65 miles south from Palm Beach to Miami.

Rickenbacker Causeway

If you're feeling fit you an cycle across and visit Key Biscayne and Bill Baggs State Florida Park
If you’re feeling fit you can cycle across the Rickenbacker Causeway and visit Key Biscayne and Bill Baggs State Florida Park

This name comes from the WW1 ace pilot, Eddie Rickenbacker who then became the president of Eastern Airlines which had its base in Miami.

Killian Drive
Dan Killian had a country store south of what is now called Coral Gables and was responsible for the first schools, streetlights and churches in the area

Don Shula Expressway
Don Shula was the Miami Dolphins coach. He retired in 1997 and holds the coaching record for the most wins in the NFL (347). He coached the 1972 Miami Dolphins, the only team in the NFL history to play a perfect 16-0 season and win the Super Bowl.

Ives Dairy Road and Milam Dairy Road

Ives Dairy Road - no longer the home of the dairy!
Ives Dairy Road – no longer the home of the dairy!


Once upon time these roads went to actual Dairy Farms. Now Ives Dairy Road leads to the Sun Life Stadium where the Miami Dolphins play. Milam Dairy Road goes to the city of Miami Lakes. The Milam family chain of grocery stores can still be found in the area.

I think it is a shame that the Dairy Farms are no longer there and have been replaced by a stadium – what do you think?


Do you know any other origins of Miami street names?


 

Hidden Treasures – Rock Garden Pond

If you take a walk along the bay near Bayfront Park, look out for a well hidden treasure – a rock garden pond complete with mini bridge, water-lillies and lots of trees and plants.

It’s very relaxing and tranquil and if there’s a spare bench why not sit and chill a while.


Location

Address: 301 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33132
301 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33132

Miami Pixel Art

I had to go to Miami International Airport the other day to meet someone visiting. From time-to-time there are art exhibitions and artwork around the airport.

If you happen to be in Terminal J look out for a big bright and colorful piece of Pixel Art of MIA.

For those of you too far away to see it up close and personal, here’s a photo I’ve taken so you can see how fun it looks 🙂

Miami International Airport eBoy Miami by Mars Design Miami.
This is the artwork currently displayed at Miami International Airport. Oct 2015.

eBoy explain that a Pixorama is a mix between the words : Pixel & Panorama. It is a Digital Art Work that is created pixel by pixel on a computer. It is a new technique of Art creation and its it allows great creativity.

For the first time, Mars Design Miami and eBoy bring their talent to a very specific project by pixelising MIA as a “city” itself.

The eBoyMIA Pixorama landing took place at the Miami International Airport with a presentation of a big print of the Artwork on the walls of the MIA.

For more information about the above artwork please visit eBoy Miami

The Beach and surrounding areas pixel style. Click the photo for more info.
The Beach and surrounding areas pixel style. Click the photo for more info at eboymiami.com

They also depict areas of Miami and Miami Beach in another colorful pixel artwork.

It’s fun to pick out areas that you recognize.

Can you spot the funky Lifeguard Huts on the beach, The Living Room from the Design District, the art deco hotels?…take a look and see what you can find. There’s so much packed into the artwork it may take you a while.


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Bird of Paradise

We are very lucky to have exotic flowers growing all around us in Miami because of the wonderful weather.

Whilst out walking yesterday I saw a bright orange flash of color and realized there were a number of Bird of Paradise flowers growing nearby.

I just had to snap a picture or two 🙂


 

These flowers earned their name because their shape resembles a bird.
These flowers earned their name because their shape resembles a bird.
The Bird of Paradise flower is an interesting shape and has a very vibrant orange color.
The Bird of Paradise flower is an interesting shape and has a very vibrant orange color.

Strelitzia reginae (Strelitziaceae)

Common Names:
Bird of Paradise Flower
Crane Flower
Crane Lily

Bird of Paradise flowers are associated with liberty, magnificence and good perspective.

Morning Sunrise Clouds

This morning, early on the beach, we were entertained by an amazing collection of clouds that covered the arrival of the sunrise. They were dramatic and each one was different from the next. It would have been rude not to capture them considering Mother Nature was putting on a great show.

Now you can enjoy them too…here are the collection of Morning Sunrise Clouds courtesy of Mother Nature herself.


Morning Sunrise Clouds

Dramatic Cloud formations
Sunrise clouds hide the early morning sun
Amazing Clouds
Do you have a favorite cloud type?
Cotton Wool clouds
Cotton Wool clouds
Morning Sunrise Clouds
The morning sunrise cloud formations put on a wonderful show

It was amazing that so many different variations of cloud were in the sky all at the same time. It looked like an artist’s brush had painted the sky.

They appear depending on the atmospheric conditions which change throughout the day. Each one unique, and even though you will see similar clouds again, they will always be different.

The panoramic view of the early morning clouds is even more dramatic
The panoramic view of the early morning clouds is even more dramatic. The morning sunrise clouds hide the star of the show but they’re doing a great job stealing the limelight.

Do you have a favorite cloud? Can you name any of the clouds featured in these pictures? Let me know below.

 

The Original Miami Beach Meatloaf

Here’s my husband’s famous Original Miami Beach Meatloaf

Enjoy!


What You Will Need

Strong blender, mixer or food processor – we use the Ninja Kitchen Master

  • 1.5 lbs of ground beef
  • 1 large white onion
  • 2 slices of cooked smoked bacon
  • 5 medium white mushrooms
  • 1 large egg
  • splash of water (optional)
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • sprinkle of oregano
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • sprinkle of taco seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 6 splashes of French’s Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 6 saltines

Meatloaf Topping

One of three simple ingredients that garnishes the top of the meatloaf. Adding dijon mustard and honey brings out the flavor.
One of three simple ingredients that garnishes the top of the meatloaf. Adding dijon mustard and honey brings out the flavor.
  • 2 tbsp Hunts Ketchup
  • 3/4 tsp of Dijon Mustard
  • 2 tsp Orange Blossom Honey

Method

  1. Set up your mixer as required. We used setting one and the largest bowl attachment with knife blades.
  2. Pre-heat oven to 425F
  3. Chop the onion in half and add to the mixer bowl. Blend for 10 secs or until onion finely chopped.
  4. Add mushrooms and blend for 20 secs.
  5. Remove knife attachment and replace with dough hook for kneading.
  6. Add 1/3rd of the ground beef, egg, saltines, bacon and seasoning. Mix together for 1 min on setting one until the ingredients are combined and you get a smooth liquid substance.
  7. Add another 1/3rd of the meat and continue mixing. Repeat until all the meat has been combined for approx 2 minutes.
  8. Check consistency and add small amounts of water if necessary
  9. Using a spatula add the mixture to a tray or foil container to fit the size of your meatloaf. Your meatloaf should be 1.5″/2″ thick.
  10. Cook in middle shelf for 30 mins
  11. While your meatloaf is cooking prepare the topping.
Add a tasty topping to your meatloaf.
Add a tasty topping to your meatloaf.

Meatloaf Topping

Method

  • Combine tomato ketchup, dijon mustard and honey together in a small bowl

Remove the meatloaf from the oven after 30 mins and add the topping evenly over the meatloaf.

Return the meatloaf to the oven and cook for a further 20/30 mins or until fully cooked.


Serving suggestion

Serve hot with mashed potatoes and seasonal vegetables.

Total Cook time 50/60 mins

Once you start eating it you just can't stop. Quick and easy to make.
Once you start eating it you just can’t stop. Quick and easy to make.

Labor Day Weekend Sunday Sunrise

A great way to start the day, if you’re up early, is to pop down to the beach and enjoy the free sunrise show. This is exactly what we did this morning.

To make the experience even more comfortable we sat on our beach chairs with tea and coffee in a couple of travel mugs.


 

A great way to get the day started
A great way to get the day started

 

Morning!
Morning!
Morning Sunrise over Miami Beach
Morning Sunrise over Miami Beach
The warm glow that follows
The warm glow that follows and it begins to hot up!

Have a Happy Labor Day Weekend wherever you spend your early mornings!

Dadeland North Station

As stations go, you can’t beat Dadeland North Station.

It’s elevated high up and has a great view of the Snapper Creek canal one way and The Dairy Queen the other.

From the elevated station platform you get a great view of the Snapper Creek Canal
From the elevated station platform you get a great view of the Snapper Creek Canal

This station is located at the intersection of South Dixie Highway (US 1) and Southwest 83rd Street on the Snapper Creek, two blocks north of Kendall Drive and two blocks south from the US 1–Snapper Creek Expressway (SR 878) junction.

The station is conveniently located if you wish to visit the Dadeland Mall.
The station is conveniently located if you wish to visit the Dadeland Mall.

 

Neighborhood Trees

If you wander your local neighborhood what kind of trees do you have?

Here are a selection of my local neighborhood trees and a lot of them are fruit trees 🙂 with a few mystery trees thrown in – do you know what they are?

Papaya Trees

A big thank you to Beatriz of gardeningB.com for pointing me in the right direction – these are actually Papayas not Mango as I incorrectly identified. See, I need all the help I can get 🙂 

However, I’m going to keep this fun Mango fact here 😉 because it’s so interesting.

Mango Mystery – Solved
Mangos are distantly related to a few plants that you’d probably never guess: the cashew and pistachio.

Fig Trees

Did You Know?
Fossil records date figs back to between 9400-9200 B.C.

Avocado

Fun Avocado Fact
Avocados will not ripen on the tree. They must be picked from the tree to initiate ripening. The leaves supply a substance that prevents ripening. The best way to store avocados is to leave them on the tree; they will store for 7 months or more when left on the tree.

Now it’s your turn..

I need some help identifying what the following trees/fruit are? Any clues?

and then of course there was this tree…

Large and nicely displayed in oversized plant pots but do you know what it is?
Large and nicely displayed in oversized plant pots but do you know what it is?

and this was underneath it…a good clue and useful to help identify it. Does this help?

Can you eat this? Looks like something you would dry and put out at Christmas time.
Can you eat this? Looks like something you would dry and put out at Christmas time.

If you can solve the mystery, please leave a comment below.

I’ll leave you with one last photo – a collection of mini balls that were under a palm tree. They’re definitely the fruit/seed from the palm tree (usually green when still attached) but to me they look like eyeballs. I guess Hallowe’en must be on my mind, even though it’s a couple of months away, and the colors reminded me of Fall/Autumn.

Not really eyeballs but it was such a funny collection I just had to snap a picture.
Not really eyeballs but it was such a funny collection I just had to snap a picture.

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