Friday, June 27, 2008

Yagihashi & Bayless

The weather was pretty warm in Chicago yesterday.  So K and I decided it was worth the walk from our office in River North to the Loop to Marshall Field''s on State Street to dine at the Seven on State Street food court.  Living in Chicago we are fortunate to have some amazing restaurants and chefs here. Many of those chefs have 4 star-pricey-amazing restaurants.  But two of those chefs, Takashi Yagihashi and Rick Bayless have blessed us with "quick-serve" options for those of us on a budget so you can have a deeelicious experience of their culinary cuisine without spending all of your gas money.  K dined on Noodles by Takashi. She had the Chicken Fried Rice with a side of Shrimp Spring Rolls.  And I had my "usual" the Taqueria Salad with Grilled Steak (only $6.95!) and Raspberry and Prickly Pear LimeAde.  If Frontera Fresca was closer, I would have that salad EVERY day!  

Stay tuned for potential posts from:  Taste of Chicago, HUB51 and Sweet Mandy B's.  No, I never go home.  


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

We growed it!

Finally, some fresh lettuce and dill from the garden. Add chicken & bacon from Rowe Farms and you're done.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Renegade Yoga

Pre-yoga class I have my healthy "think thin" bar.  Post-yoga we all venture to a place (heard of but have never been) in West Town called flo.  According to those residing in the West Town neighborhood, this is a popular place for brunch.  It's SRO on weekends.  But tonight, nice and quiet and great service. My first time there, so I had the dinner special:  Tilapia over spinach topped off with corn salsa and avocado...oooh and the Pomegranate margarita! Need I say more? Looking forward to next Tuesday's Renegade Yoga class and post-dinner delight.


Monday, June 23, 2008

Summer in Chicago

It's finally here...summer in Chicago.  It's finally here when the weather cooperates.  When the sun shines, one of our summer rituals is outdoor patio dining.  The best way to do this is at a friend's house with a rooftop deck. Better yet, a friend with a rooftop deck and culinary skills. My friend T is from Brazil and has a passion for food; eating it and photographing it. Photographing food is her bread and butter.  This is a Saturday afternoon at T & K's after a trip to the Chicago Farmer's Markets around the city and Whole Foods for those foods not quite farmer ready. The bread and the organic goat cheese are from Chicago's Green City Market. The prosciutto, a mixture of olives and yellow and red baby tomatoes are from Whole Foods.


A Grand Dinner

My big brother and his new bride were married at the Kauai Grand Hyatt. The top image is the first thing you see when entering the lobby from the valet...yep, right out to the Pacific Ocean. My next trip to Kauai I will definitely be staying there.  The total number of those attending the wedding, including the bride and groom, was just sixteen.  Perfect if you ask me.  The wedding dinner was at the restaurant, Tidepools at the Grand Hyatt.  The menu from the dinner is above along with an image of the delicious dessert: Lemon Grass Ginger Brulee with sesame tuile...YUM!


Aloha, Mr. Mai Tai - on Kauai!*

I've been invited to be the "foreign correspondent" to the infamous Broccoli & Prosecco blog. So I'll be reporting on my culinary and cocktail adventures in Chicago and wherever my vacations and/or life takes me.  The pictures above are from my big brother's destination wedding in Kauai. If you ever get the chance to visit the "Garden Island" I highly, highly recommend.  The cocktail is a Mai Tai in a v. special glass (probably for the tourists) from Keoki's Paradise at the Poipu Shopping Village at Poipu Beach.  The Tropical Parfait (fresh seasonal fruits layered with Kauai granola and low-fat yogurt) was my daily breakfast poolside at Kukui's Poolside Restaurant and Bar at the Kauai Marriott Resort & Beach Club in Lihue.  At least I could start my day healthy and not feel too guilty about the other amazing food I would devour the rest of the day.  Oh and forgive, please, I'm still getting used to my first digital camera.  I bought it for the wedding!  Mahalo!  

*Thanks Mrs. B. for the line!


Sunday, June 22, 2008

Sunday Night Poo-teen

Change of plan – poutine over cubano due to the lack of ready-to-eat avacado. A JK inspired dish that included crispy potato, Monforte soft white sheep cheese, left-over garlic pork shoulder and asparagus. Nummy.


Stubble berries

The closer you get, the less appetizing these strawberries look. I think it's a bit early in the season, but I had to include these in all their seedy, stubbly splendor.


Saturday, June 21, 2008

Garlic-Roasted Pork Shoulder

I reek of Garlic, but I don't care! This was so fall-apart-delicious it's worth smelling like an old sock. The incredible gravy was a nice match for the roast fennel, carrot, asparagus and potato.

The one shoulder easily made enough for four people – so tomorrow it's cubanos for lunch. Recipe from Epicurious.


Sunday, June 15, 2008


Farm fresh eggs from the North Market. I couldn't crack them open before taking a picture. I just wish I could meet the Chicken to say thanks. BRAAAWWK!


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

I grew this!

I've never had luck with plants. Whether they be plants to look at or plants to eat. But I managed to grow a strawberry plant on my balcony and it actually produced fruit. Fruit that I was able to eat! And it was sweet and tasty.


Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Asparagus with prostitute and poached eggs

The only spelling suggestion for prosciutto is prostitute, so I decided to go with it. This was a great meal, and it's fast too. Boiling water take a bit, but you can multitask and have a glass of wine while you're waiting. Roast the asparagus in the oven, top with parma prostitute, layer on the poached eggs and then grate some manchego over the whole thing. This would make a great breakfast was well, just substitute the prostitute for smoked salesman.


Bacon's Burger

The burger was good, but the yellow beet salad really was the star of the meal. Rosti came too, but he was just filling the plate.


Nachos con Dos Equis

When you have left-over roast chicken, why not make nacho grande. Take one can of refried beans, layer chicken, cheese, and then pop in the oven to heat through. Add a sprinkle of cilantro for kicks, and serve guacamole and chips on the side. Unfortunately we didn't actually have Dos Equis, but Keith's was a great stand-in. The only thing missing - mezcal floaters!


Roast chicken with favalad

It's fava bean (or broad bean) season in California, and luckily they're sending them up north until we get our own in July/August. Julie did a roast chicken with an awesome fava, arugula, radish, mint and pecorino salad. Recipe here.