Smag 7: New year, new fare 

Blue Nile Ethiopian Restaurant
3209 S. Broadway, Edmond 330-9988

Blue Nile had its soft opening a few weeks ago and is now open to diners looking to travel the world via their taste buds. All of its main entrees are presented with injera, a yeast-risen flatbread. Doro wat, the national dish of Ethiopia, is an especially good chicken dish traditionally done for Easter with boiled egg and chicken legs, combined with a soup flavored with onions, garlic, ginger root and olive oil.

$$ Ethiopian

Green Goodies By Tiffany
5840 N. Classen Blvd. 842-2288

Green Goodies recently unveiled a new store, having moved from Western Avenue. This place is unbelievable in that it uses no preservatives, high-fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated fats, artificial colors or flavors. The focus is on high-quality products. Want egg-free cupcakes? Step right up. How about gluten-free? You’ll be covered at this cup-cakery.

$$ Cupcakes and more

Emma J’s Bakery
1334 N. Interstate Drive, Norman 537-9474

Want a cake that looks like the Empire State Building or the White House? Decorator Carrie Rains has done it. Besides selling dozens of her peanut-butter fudge cupcakes, along with the popular raspberry swirl, Rains will make birthday cakes, wedding cakes and lots of other gourmet cupcakes. She opened in the fall and named the place after her daughters. Closed Sundays and Mondays.

$$$ Cakes and cupcakes

Tony’s Island Grill
305 E. Highway 152, Mustang 376-6300

This restaurant comes packed with an island feel, thanks to its Hawaiian-trained chef. One popular menu item is the Krakatoa Burger, but you can also enjoy a Big Kahuna burger (thanks, “Pulp Fiction”), tacos, hand-breaded chicken-fried steak and fresh-cut french fries.

Sample the excellent chocolate sheet cake or the fresh cobbler made with in-season fruit.

$$ Hawaiian and eclectic

Tres-Taqueria y Cantina
305 E. Main, Norman 701-8282

Here is another concept starting 2012 with a bang: food from Spain, South America and New Mexico. Enjoy a melting pot of cuisines, plus tres leche cake. From Venezuela comes its hallacas, a superlative tamale filled with flavorful Latin American ingredients such as juicy pork, chicken, garbanzo beans and dusted with seasonings, then tucked in banana leaves.

$$ Spanish, South American and New Mexican cooking

Cajun Cafe
809 N.W. 12th, Moore 799-1100

Ambitious Cindy Tran grew up in New Orleans eating Cajun food. She brought that sense of excitement with her, and in October opened up her Cajun Cafe, now in full swing with eight tables. Behind every flavor at this establishment, there are mouthwatering shrimp po’ boys, chicken and shrimp gumbo and, of course, jambalaya.

$$ Cajun

Pinkitzel Cupcakes & Candy
1389 E. 15th, Edmond 330-4500

Located in the chic Spring Creek Village in Edmond, Pinkitzel’s second location is loaded with candy and cupcakes. Waiting for your sweet tooth are more than 200 kinds of loose candies and lots of appealing truffles. Its No. 1 seller in the cupcake line is the chocolate truffle, followed by the red velvet.

$$ Candy and cupcakes

—Carol Smaglinski photos by Mark Hancock and Shannon Cornman

$$: up to $15

$$$: $15-$30

$$$$: above $30

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Carol Smaglinski

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