Back in the ‘Nati

Welp, after a week of fun in Chicago, I’ve moved back home until it’s time to leave for my semester abroad in Barcelona. I’ll be starting a new blog for that adventure, but for now here’s a photo montage of my last week in Chicago.

A walk through a garden. I liked calling it a grotto.

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Tanner enjoying some popcorn at the showing of The Jungle Book at Pritzker Pavilion.IMG_0844[1]

Doughnut Vault!

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2 of each kind….

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Taco Night

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Yolk for Brunch.

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Margaritas at El Hefe on the last day of work.
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In line at Hot Doug’s.

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Fancy cheese and wine night at Pritzker Pavilion.

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With Monet at the Art Institute.

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Sandwiches from Little Goat Bread at the French Market.IMG_0871[1]

Blanket fort!IMG_0886[1]

Somehow, after all that food and indulgence, I found out that i actually LOST 5 pounds by the time I got home. This is comforting, but very, very surprising.

 

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gettin’ fancy

So in my new life as an adult, living on my own, and paying bills, I’m also free to do whatever I want. Like eat ice cream for dinner. Or watch Netflix in my underwear. And even though I’m tempted to just each nachos and queso dip every night for dinner, a girl still has to maintain some class every now and then. By “class” I mean doing none of the above, wearing a dress, and acting like I know what kind of wine to order at a bar. Here are some pictures of my classy night out with Tanner and my Uncle Dan at The Gage.

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Mmmmm…….salivation.

Notice how there are no pictures of me, because I could probably never look as pretty as this food does. In case you were wondering, that’s

1. a scotch egg

2. bison tartare (that’s a quail egg on top. our waiter came by and prepared the tartare by mixing in the sweet sauces, the capers, that green stuff, and the meat, using the yolk as binding. then we served ourselves some on the crostinis. heaven)

3. mussels vindaloo

4. a venison burger, rare (the waiter insisted that I have my meat rare. i was worried about it being blood, gamey and gross, but it was great. subtly different from a regular burger… maybe even better. the accompanying fries kind of overpowered the taste in a bad way though)

5. chocolate ganache tart (there were little crusty chocolate things that tasted almost EXACTLY like Cocoa Krispies, only better)

Everything was delicious.

 

other people’s sammiches

As a follow up to my last post about the Turkey and Muenster Sandwiches with Blueberry Jam I made, I decided it would cool to share all of my favorite sandwich sites and blogs. You may think that there may not be too many on my list, but there’s a special place for food that’s tucked between two pieces of bread. Just take a look at my Pinterest boards, and you’ll see the love that I have for something that’s pressed, grilled, sliced, or stacked. Sandwiches come sweet, salty, savory, and sticky, but they’re always perfect to me.

In no specific order, here are the sandwich sites I love best:

Grilled Cheese Social. I love everything about this blog. Even the writing and personal stories (which I usually skim over in a food blog) is vibrant and fun to read. Save that part for when you’re trying not to drool over your grilled creations cooling off after they’ve been made. Side note: I’ve never once succeeded in this, no matter how important it is for the good of the sandwich. Drool, everywhere. Sandwich, gone.

Glorious Sandwiches. Oh man. This Pork, Nectarine, and Boursin sandwich is calling my name. These are the sandwiches that give me courage.

Scanwiches. Epitome of food porn. Each sandwich is cut in have and beautifully “scanned,” fully exploiting it’s, uh, folds of meat for all to enjoy. This website doesn’t have recipes, per say, but with listed ingredients and the detailed photos, I think you can figure out the assembly on your own.

How Sweet It Is. Okay, this isn’t technically a sandwich blog, but How Sweet puts out some good sandwiches pretty often. Check out the Sandwiches category page and pay special attention to what I’ve got my eyes on. Savory: crispy zucchini grilled cheese with dijon horseradish aioli or Sweet: grilled fontina + blackberry smash sandwiches.

Sweet-sonian. Not a sandwich blog either, but man this cucumber goat cheese grilled cheese looked delicious and refreshing at the same time.

Closet Cooking. Again, not a sandwich blog, but this site features some tasty grilled cheeses.

Enjoy!

crushing on…

1. S’mores, s’mores, s’mores. Like this s’mores pie (AND this one!). Or this s’more dip. Or this s’more ice cream cake. I’m so upset that I can’t have a bonfire in the middle of my studio apartment that I just need to try one of these no-open-flame-necessary recipes RIGHT NOW.

2. Chinatown. Tanner and I took a food tour of the Chinatown area on the South side of Chicago, and it was FANTASTIC. I could not recommend the tour or our wonderful tour guide, Ploy, enough.

3. Taro puffs. This is an extension of my last point, but I just can’t get over them. Who would have thought that a little root could taste SO delicious.

4. Green tea with peach at Ten Ren. Okay, okay, I’ll stop talking about Chinatown things after this one. This had to be the most refreshing, deliciously sweet drink I have ever imbibed. Usually I don’t like to drink my calories (and have thus fallen captive to the Diet Coke Gods), but man was this worth it. I wish I had crept behind the counter to see how the barista made it.

4. Brunch. This weekend we finally went to Yolk, which is right by our apartment and always has a huge line out the door. Brunch is by far my favorite meal, and I thoroughly enjoyed the fact that I could have my savory AND sweet by ordering a Countryside Skillet with a side of Blueberry-Banana Crunch Pancakes. While I still want to head over to Nightwood and Longman & Eagle for brunch one day, I’ll curb my appetite with some s’more muffins from Dominick’s (ode to #1) or these lil donuts and this frittata.

5. This waste bin that expands when you put more crap in it, getting cuter and pudgier as the surrounding area gets smellier and smellier.

6. Food challenges. And I’m not talking about those hot dog-eating contests. I’m talking about really challenging recipes that even Julia Childs took awhile to perfect (probably…maybe). I plan on trying my hand at croissants or brie.

7. This. Yup. Yep. Yep. Mmmm-hmmm.

WHAT IS BUSINESS CASUAL IN CHICAGO?

Hello!

This blog showcases everything I am doing, eating, and seeing during my time as a design intern in Chicago this summer (anything people would actually want to read about anyways). In this blog you can expect to see a lot of touristy Bean pictures and attempts at photography (cough, cough…Instagram), but hopefully some interesting stuff too. Like all the recipes I try. Or pictures of all the Chicago hot dogs I am going to gorge myself with. Or cat videos.

Sounds enjoyable, right? I hope you’ll agree.