Tuesday, December 20, 2011

New York State of Mind

Some friends of mine just returned from a trip to New York City...which got me thinking that I haven't been back since June, 2010. I think a trip to New York City is definitely in order for 2012. Here's a mini flashback to the eats enjoyed on that 4 day weekend trip in 2010!

From top to bottom: Eleven Madison Park, we devoured the Four Course menu and enjoyed added extras sprinkled throughout the four courses, like these mini macaroons | Fatty Crab in the West Village sharing Fatty Sliders| Brunch (of course) at Balthazar, the scrambled eggs in puff pastry | The view from my friends' apartment balcony | Sharing the amazing and delicious, mediterranean menu at ilili restaurant, one of the largest restaurant spaces I've ever seen in New York |


Sunday, October 16, 2011

It's a Boy!

Check out the adorable and yummy cupcakes from a good friend's baby shower this weekend. I tried the red velvet cupcake with fondant monkey face at the baby shower...delicious...right down to the fondant. Cupcakes in attendance: chocolate cake with chocolate frosting, vanilla cake with butter cream frosting, red velvet with cream cheese frosting and cookies and cream cake with frosting to match. South Indian cuisine was served for the appetizers and lunch...delicious as well! At the end of the shower we were all asked to fill a blue polka dot bag of candy from a blue themed candy buffet. Various glass vases were filled with blue rock candy suckers, blue M&Ms, blue vanilla flavored Tootsie rolls, white chocolate covered pretzels with blue drizzle, It's a Boy! suckers and blue saltwater taffy. There were even leftover cupcakes for us to take as well...a vanilla with butter cream frosting made the trip back to my apartment. Tasted even better the next day!


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Back to ino

Foursquare says i havent been in a year,  seems too long. I opted out of my standard truffled egg toast for bruscettas and a fontina egg asparagus breakfast one.  Its good but I still recommend the truffled egg toast.  A mimosa,  a prosecco and a free bartender prosecco made up for the ordring deficiency.  Ino is still all about daytime chilling in the village w snacks read truffled egg toast always and several glasses.  Caw!


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Dirty Swede

No, I'm not talking about myself and the 1/4 of my family heritage. I'm talking about ONE of the many awesome "steamed sandwiches" at Chicago Bagel Authority. It's in the Lincoln Park neighborhood right near the Armitage Brown Line stop on of course the wonderful shopping street of Armitage. CBA is one of my many favorite places to eat in Chicago and if you've been to Chicago to visit me and I haven't taken you there...I'm a bad hostess. Back to the eats...The Dirty Swede is filled with turkey, cream cheese, bacon, colby, smoked cheddar, lettuce, tomato, sprouts & mayo on an onion bagel. I got this little gem after one of my "Fit for a 5K" classes I took back in January/February/March that my friend/personal trainer M. taught at DePaul. So, I basically cancelled out that 1/2 hour of running and 1/2 of strength training for this yummy sandwich. It was worth it...it always is. Check out their HUGE menu here. Oh and my favorite thing for dessert there is this yummy treat made up of Coco-Puffs cereal and Golden Grahams cereal held together by melted marshmallows...like a deconstructed s'mores...holy crap it's good.

Speaking of M....she's really the reason I was inspired to put this post up this week. I was going through her wedding photos online from back in June...and it appears that after the wedding ceremony at our church in the Lincoln Park neighborhood...she and Andrew stopped at the CBA for post-wedding ceremony steamed sandwiches...I love it. Of course if it was me I would have made my new hubby walk a few more blocks to Sweet Mandy B's for dessert!


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Traveling Cupcake: Milwaukee Day Trip (Sneak Preview)

Well, for the life of me, I can't get the "Read More" or "Continue Reading" to work for me and I've got waaaay too many photos too post. So for now, until Broccoli and his magic HTML powers return from holiday, here's a tiny preview of my day trip to Milwaukee last Saturday. S. had the brilliant idea to take Amtrak and get out of town for the day and head up north, only an hour and a half away, to Milwaukee! I had never been and had wanted to check out the Milwaukee Art Museum ever since Calatrava put his mark on it. I had also heard from many friends that there were some great spots to dine and drink at. We managed to squeeze in three of the recommends 2 in the awesome Third Ward neighborhood: Water Buffalo (pre-museum snack while dining on the riverwalk), Harbor House (post-museum and pre-dinner Spotted Cow beers) and Milwaukee Ale House (dinner before heading back on the train to Chicago). The beers above (photo credit to S. and his iPhone), we happily enjoyed in the amazing sunny and warm weather from the top terrace of the Milwaukee Ale House overlooking the river. Stay tuned...


Thursday, June 23, 2011

Midnight in Paris in Chicago

Two Fridays ago I met S. for a movie and then dinner in what I thought was always the Lincoln Park neighborhood, but I now see by the banners in S.'s photo above that we were actually in Lakeview East (Really Chicago? Above Diversey Ave. is Lake View East?). Anyway, we met after work at Landmark Century Centre Cinema to catch "Midnight in Paris." It's a great movie and will make you want to book the next flight out of wherever you are to Paris. The movie did a great job of making you fall in love with Paris, the food, the people...all of it, all over again...and supplied a good story too. After seeing a movie with Paris as the main character, we were craving French food. Thank goodness right across the street is La Creperie. It was too cold to sit outside so we sat in the dining room between the main dining room and the patio. We started with the assiette de fromages (a monthly selection of 3 cheeses) and then we each had savory crepes. I had the poulet au champignons (chicken in an herb cream sauce with sauteed button mushrooms) and he had the poulet & fromage de chevre (chicken breast with roasted tomatoes and goat cheese). Unfortunately, there was no room for dessert that night...but It's such a cute little spot to go to after a movie, in Lake View East(?).


Sunday, June 12, 2011

Another Summer in Chicago...this Time with a List

And so it begins...another summer in Chicago. Though it's still chilly today, at least it's sunny. Somehow with the sun, the food and drinks in this town taste so much better. I've been hanging out with friends the last few days and we've been talking about new places to try now that summer is here. We seem to get into a food rut and get complacent about where we all go. We tend to always spend at least one of the weekend nights at D4 or Default as I've grown to call it. I love D4...it's got great food AND great cocktails and it's a big space for the city. But it's always good to try something new and explore. So, I've decided to make a list of spots to either visit for the first time or visit again and try another menu...say, brunch vs. dinner.

1. Maude's Liquor Bar (West Loop...always, always packed...)
2. Doughnut Vault (River North...though, really should I stand in line for 2 hours for a donut?)
3. GT Fish & Oyster (River North...I need to make friends in Chicago that love seafood as much as I do for this dinner.)
4. C-View (Streeterville...Marcus Samuelsson's C-House Restaurant lives on the bottom floor of the Affinia Hotel, but the rooftop bar C-View is the last on my list of rooftop bars to try in the city.)
5. Urban Belly (Avondale...New in 2009...but still have not made it west to try it out.)
6. Hot Chocolate (Bucktown...This is one of those spots I've had dinner and dessert many times, but have always wanted to try the brunch.)
7. Sunda (River North...This spot has been open for awhile...but have never gone.)
8. Bistro Campagne (Lincoln Square...Opened in 2002...French bistro...yum.)
9. Hot Doug's (Avondale...I would be in big trouble from my blogmates if I left this off the list.)
10. The Bristol (Bucktown...I've had dinner there a few times, but never the brunch.)

*Photo from last summer on the patio of The Purple Pig...probably my #11 to go back and enjoy.


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Homemade ravioli- first attempt

After a morning at our favourite farmers' market, we were inspired by the fresh sheep ricotta we bought at the Highmark Farms table so C and I decided to make something neither of us had ever made before: spinach + ricotta ravioli!

Following a recipe from The Silver Spoon, I took charge of the dough-making and C was in charge of sauce and filling. Unfortunately, since there was no pasta machine at my place, I got a good arm and core workout rolling out the pasta dough.

Now here's where you'll notice our novice pasta-making skills. We kind of miscalculated the spacing of the filling on the strip of dough, and the first batch of ravioli were so large such that they covered the entire palm of my hand. They were pop-tart shaped ravioli! The subsequent batches were smaller, but after ingesting 3 of the pop tart ravioli, no surprise I was full. But the filling was really delicious and the fresh sheep ricotta was super creamy.

 Hopefully our next ravioli project will produce smaller, more delicate edibles. And in the meantime I'm going to pick up one of those cute ravioli cutters with the scalloped edges and ask C to bring the pasta machine over so I'm not huffing and puffing for my meal.