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It’s March 14th but in sunny Pittsburgh, it feels much more like May.  With Global Warming in full force and one of the weakest winters in memory past us, it’s time for Spring.  Panera has the right idea, by debuting two new items and returning one favorite to their menu tomorrow.  The Roasted Turkey Fiji Apple Salad and the Low Fat Peach Nectar Smoothie w/ ginseng will be first time promo items, bringing forth the bright, bursting colors of Springtime with them.  One popular promo soup from last year also finds its way back onto the menu with the Low-Fat Chicken Tortilla Soup.

During the depressing, dark Winter day’s, Panera promoted fatty, comfort foods with reckless abandon, featuring the Sonoma Chicken Stew.  Now that it’s Spring, the bread titan has returned to what got them famous in the first place, faux health food, stamped with Low-Fat claims all over the place.  
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The Peach Nectar Smoothie incorporates ginseng, Low Fat Stonyfield Farm Vanilla yogurt and ice.  The subtle orange overtones of the peach will be sure to brighten your mood along with the ginseng shot.  
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The Roasted Turkey Fiji Apple Salad piles in roasted turkey, mixed field greens (fancy for lettuce), romaine lettuce (layman’s term for lettuce), vine ripened tomatoes, red onions, pecans, Gorgonzola   (fancy cheese), apple chips, and white balsamic apple vinaigrette. I’ve never been a fan of mixing fruit with salads, but the fact that they’re chips might swing me far enough to try this one out.  
Pictured with Cuban Chicken Panini
One of my all time favorite Panera soups returns with the Chicken Tortilla Soup.  The soup brandishes whole kernel corn, roasted Poblano peppers, black beans, tomatoes, dried chili peppers, hints of cumin and lime.  The whole pot is then topped off with tri color tortilla strips. Something about making those tortilla strips three colors that makes the whole outfit just that much more exciting.  Can’t even imagine eating this soup with only one color of tortilla strips.