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Hungry Magazine - All Things Tasty
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Archive for October, 2008

10.30.08

Quick Beijing Duck Legs

Recipes


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laquer

I actually have an appointment to eat Beijing duck on Monday, which makes it kind of absurd that tonight I was struck by the desire to replicate a quick version at home, but matters of the palate, just as matters of the heart, don’t always make much sense. Anyways, I made a trip to Richwell Market (1835 S. Canal) picked up some Beijing style pancakes for a couple of bucks and a bunch of scallions for $.49, then headed over to Fox and Obel for four 8 oz duck legs ($14). I was pretty psyched with what turned out. The photo above is my actual plate. Recipe follows: More »

10.29.08

Tragic Triage

Food Memoir


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Gourmet Vintage

My wife and I subscribe to a number of food periodicals. We’ve been doing this for the greater part of our 38 year marriage. Fortunately, we’re not zealous pack rats. However, some items are harder to part with than others are. For us, food magazines top the list. More »

10.28.08

Beyond Ramen: Where to Eat Well (for cheap) on a Downtown Campus

Bites: News and Miscellany


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With the news of the recent Cup of Noodles recall, we sent our man from Robert Morris college, Matt Kirouac, to find some affordable alternatives for the loop college crowd.

The Cubano at Cafecito

Being a college student is a lot like being a carpetbagger. The look is there- tired, scruffy clothes worn well past their expiration date and in dire need of a wash. The exhausted desperation- ambling from one room to another, haphazardly trying to find one’s place in life. And the diet, unfortunately, also shares a hopeless similarity- scrounging through the cabinets and pinching pennies so as to reap a vacation to the vending machine. More »

10.27.08

A Brief History of Mead, plus a Michigan Connection

Food History, Food Production


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mead

What do honeymoon romps, Norse dining halls, the mythical hero Beowulf, and a pain-relieving medicine have in common? And yes, it has more to do with the superficial excesses of booze and narcotics. As lore would have it, they all feature the world’s most ancient alcoholic beverage, mead, in some context. More »

10.27.08

All About Aspic

Food History, Recipes


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Tom Aspic

“Aspic” can refer to a specific type of snake (as in Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra, when a Roman guard notes, after Cleopatra is found dead, “This is an aspic’s trail”)—that is, an asp. It can also mean a savory jelly of meat or fish stock—ostensibly because the color of plain aspic is reminiscent of the color of the asp. (Mmm—snake-colored food—how appetizing.) More »

10.22.08

The Captain of C-House

Podcasts, Profiles in Food: Interviews


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marcus samuelsson

If, as restaurant lore suggests, many chefs come from the ranks of artists, bandits and miscellaneous misfits, then Marcus Samuelsson, executive chef of C-House (166 E. Superiorr) and Marc Burger at Macy’s on State is, by comparison, a prince. The youngest chef to receive three stars from the New York Times, he’s also an entrepreneur, a TV personality, a cookbook author and a tireless ambassador for Swedish and African culinary and cultural heritage. He’s as much an intellectual as he is a master culinary craftsman. More importantly, those of you who read my burger round-up a few weeks ago know he also makes a mean grilled patty. Samuelsson was in town last week to work on some new dishes at C-House and I caught up with him to see what’s on his mind. Enjoy.

If you have Adobe Flash installed, you can play the file right on this site, below, by pressing the play button. If not, download the file and play it on your PC or on an MP3 player here: Marcus Samuelsson Interview

10.21.08

Lowenstein’s Revenge: A memoir of NYC Deli

Food Memoir


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I’ve had my share of deli in this life….perhaps more than I should, certainly enough to make me a member of the deli cognoscenti and a prime candidate for a coronary. Post War II middle class Jews (like my parents….first generation Americans) had a foot in both camps too, at a time when perfunctory cardiac surgery was only a dream. When the second shoe dropped it sent the offender straight from the Knishes to the Kaddish, the ancient Aramaic biblical or Talmudic passage recited by mourners at a funeral, upon learning of a death, or any commemoration of it. More »

10.20.08

Consider the Oyster

Bites: News and Miscellany


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kung pao chicken

The Kung Pao chicken at Spring World

Much to my chagrin, the idea of the starving artist is not a mythology. I wish it were, but while there may be no better time in human history to be a writer, at least in terms of outlets for expression, it’s also one of the worst times to try to make a living at the form.

Unfortunately, another myth of artistry rings true, and that’s that I don’t have much choice in the matter. More than a couple of days without indulging in the act of writing may be like a day without heroin for a dependant junkie. When so many days pass without an act of creativity, I panic, a sense of worthlessness descends and the bile rises. More »

10.20.08

French-Baked Vidalia Onions

Recipes


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What small, sweet, juicy treat hails from the fine state of Georgia? If you’re thinking of a peach, you’d be wrong. Not even in the same food variety. Perhaps one of the most well-known vegetables in the culinary world is the other sweet treat from the South – Vidalia onions. As a compliment to many dishes, Vidalia onions fare well in soups, on sandwiches and entrees, and even in the occasional soufflé. Here’s a fall recipe that highlights this delectable vegetable for those of us who just can’t get enough of its wonderful taste and aroma. Be prepared though, it tastes almost exactly like French onion soup! More »

10.16.08

First Bite:Steve’s Deli

Bites: News and Miscellany


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From our West Loop Bureau, a report on Steve’s Deli (354 W. Hubbard) from our man Dave Lewis, who is more real Detroit than Eminem, Kid Rock, Bob Seger, The MC5, and the White Stripes all put together (and most importantly a native Detroit deli denizen).

It is with the giddy smile of a little school girl that I happily report to you that a “Detroit Style” deli has finally made it’s way west of Orchard Lake Road… and landed here, in the land of pizza and wind.

Yes, Steve’s Deli is open. Finally. More »

10.15.08

Leeks and Celts

Food History, Recipes


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Leeks

When King Henry says, in Shakespeare’s “Henry V,” that he will wear a leek in his cap, he is identifying himself with his Welsh subjects. The reason this created a connection is that, when King Cadwallader and the Welsh faced the Saxons in battle in AD 640, the Welsh soldiers identified themselves by wearing leeks in their caps. Leeks have been consumed for so long in Wales and other Celtic countries that some hypothesize that the British Isles are a possible point of origin. Other scholars say the Mediterranean is where they emerged. They were popular in Egypt and ancient Rome (Nero’s nickname was “leekeater”), the Chinese were praising leeks by 1500 BC, and leeks were being written about in Mesopotamia as early as 2100 BC. So wherever they started, they clearly were popular and on the move pretty much from the get-go. More »

10.14.08

Breaking Down the Bristol

Restaurant Reviews


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Pork Belly Bristol

Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but ripping someone off is just a recipe for bad karma. With that in mind, The Bristol, Bucktown’s new Midwestern-inspired trattoria, might be headed for some bad vibes.

I’m not saying this just because The Bristol has a chalkboard menu. Gil Langlois’ Lincoln Square restaurant Chalkboard has, yep, chalkboard menus. Tufano’s Vernon Park Tap and half the red sauce joints in Little Italy have them, and before desktop publishing, so did every little bistro. It’s also not because The Bristol has a communal table; so did my grandmother’s house and Avec. More »

10.13.08

Chef Phillip Foss Carves up the Critics

Bites: News and Miscellany


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Note: a few days after we wrote this, Foss erased Heather Shouse’s name from the blog post discussed below. He says he did so “begrudgingly”.

Chef Phillip Foss of Lockwood takes issue with food critics on his blog. The piece really seems mostly like a thinly veiled attack on Heather Shouse of Time Out for her negative review of the place. Why doesn’t Foss also talk about Anne Spiselman of the Chicago Reader? Her review was middle-of-the-road at best.

I do applaud Foss for responding, as I feel like lots of chefs fear retribution and never respond to critics, or if they do, they take shots at bloggers and leave the big critics alone, because that’s where all the perceived media power seems to lie. Still, I don’t agree with Foss on his piece overall. More »

10.13.08

Link Buffet

Bites: News and Miscellany


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Take Me Out Chinese recovers from their recent fire and re-opens on Saturday, October 18th. They’ll be handing out their free signature hot wings. Owner Karen Lim also says that she’s decided to go away from the Buffalo wing style in favor of the Great Seas Chinese restaurant (owned by her folks) “lollipop” style from here on out. She says, “I hate to admit it…but parents are always right!”

I’m probably the last person in the world to link to this, but Mike Gebert’s Sky Full of Bacon video podcast featuring some pig head goodness shouldn’t be missed. It’s totally safe for work, unless you work at the Chicago Diner.

Ming Tsai cooks with Rick Bayless on Simply Ming this weekend, October 18th at 1 p.m. on WTTW. Tune in.

Ferran Adria might not do very well on Top Chef [New York Times]

10.12.08

Welcome to the Dahl-house

Profiles in Food: Interviews


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edahl

Boka pastry chef Elizabeth Dahl - photo courtesy of Star Chefs

Plenty of us grew up with that nostalgic treasure known as the Easy Bake Oven. Heck, I’d reckon there’s a sizeable population of closeted dollhouse “chefs,” putting Barbie to task in miniature kitchens across this land right now. But, other than the fact, that her last name is a homonym of the word “doll” and her life is seemingly fantastic, neither of these images has anything to do with the story of Elizabeth Dahl, the talented pastry chef at Boka. If you’ve had the pleasure of gobbling down any of her desserts including her semolina pudding cake or her sweet corn pudding with blackberries, then you know that this young chef’s skill exceeds the elementary confines of, say, ovens, fryers, ice cream makers, and yes, light bulb powered ovens. More »

10.09.08

A Province All His Own

Podcasts, Profiles in Food: Interviews


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Everyone knows drummers are different, and Randy Zweiban, former cymbal sockin’ chef of the upcoming Province, is no exception. He’s no Food Network driven flash-in-the-pan blowing through job after job. Zweiban’s a serial monogamist who spent 7 years working with Norman Van Aken in Miami and a decade at Nacional 27. Now he’s about to debut Province, a Spanish and Latin influenced American cuisine based restaurant. In this podcast interview, Zweiban talks about his days gigging at CBGB’s, noshing in New York City, and opening a restaurant at the “worst time in 150 years”. Enjoy.

If you have Adobe Flash installed, you can play the file right on this site, below, by pressing the play button. If not, download the file and play it on your PC or on an MP3 player here: Randy Zweiban Interview

10.07.08

Samurai Chazerai*

Do I Need a Pastry Torch?: Kitchen Gadget Reviews, Food Memoir


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shun

I shamelessly admit that cooking gear is my drug of choice, I really love kitchen knives. I have a load of them, ranging from a duet of paring knives, as well as 4”, 6”, 8”, and 12” chefs, boning, slicing, utility, and of course like all good dilettantes, a Santoku. There’s a cleaver in there somewhere, but some reckless chopping mission has ruined it. The knives stand at attention along a magnetic bar, arranged in ascending order. As I retire for the evening, I glance at the assemblage and hope that in the event an intruder breaks into the house during the night the plentiful array of culinary blades don’t give the criminal thoughts beyond taking the TV, PC, and other assets. More »

10.06.08

Burger Battle

Restaurant Reviews


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marcburger

Not since Karl Marx and Martin Luther have manifestos been so hot. Though these days, the protesting masses aren’t quite the blood-spattered, frothy-mouthed rabble they once were. Rather, like blogs, the green movement and plastic bracelets etched with catchphrases, i.e. anything that was once relevant or cool, corporations have also co-opted the yearning declaration for their marketing purposes. More »

10.05.08

Quick Sneak: Province

Bites: News and Miscellany


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trees

Stopped in last week to talk to Nacional 27 vet Randy Zweiban and check in on his new restaurant project Province (161 N. Jefferson - debuts the week of October 13). We sat down for a podcast I hope to debut in the next couple of weeks where we talk about his days as a diamond setter and drummer (he loves Charlie Watts and John Bonham). In a Food Network driven world where young gun chefs crave immediate success, Zweiban has been a serial monogamist, spending 7 years in Florida with Norman VanAken and and a decade with Lettuce Entertain You. It’s refreshing to see a deliberate and very talented guy at work. Anyways I found the mostly finished dining room which features hanging petrified manzanita trees, hot pink accent walls, a glass winecellar like curtain wall, cork and reclaimed wood tables, and breathtaking food photos from Zweiban’s longtime girlfriend Laurie Proffitt to be one of the cooler looking rooms around. More »

10.02.08

Think Outside the Bell

Restaurant Reviews


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tamal

Before we talk about the new Printers Row taco joint, Flaco’s, let’s start with a brush-up Spanish lesson. “Guey, tienes guacamole en la barba,” translates to “dude, there’s guacamole on your chin.”, the utterance of which is a greatly appreciated act of common courtesy. Then there’s “tu vas a acabar ese burrito? Si? Oye Mira, alli esta Angelina Jolie!” This, of course means “are you going to finish that burrito? You are? Hey look, there’s Angelina Jolie!” This phrase will aid as a handy distraction while you swipe the burrito remnants off your companion’s plate. Finally, be sure and study the phrase “es legal comer un taco, si estoy usando leiderhosen?” Because you never know when you might have to ask “is it legal to eat a taco if I’m wearing leiderhosen?” More »


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