May 25, 2015

What we cooked last week:

Sunday: Skirt Steak w/ chimichurri, biyaldi, St. Clement’s posset, bruschetta
(mushroom and chickpea)
Monday: Leftovers, layovers, relaxation
Tuesday: Umami burgers
Wednesday: Out to dinner with Dick Greenbaum and friend
Thursday: Salade Nicoise

To Chicago for Beez’s business

Just back yesterday from a long weekend in Chicago where Beez attended the ASCO (American Society of Cancer Oncologists) Conference. In that town of excellent restaurants our best meal was a lunch in the oyster bar section of Shaw’s Crab House. Shaw’s is nearly a tourist destination but we had a seared tuna taco that packed a wallop of flavor. I tried to reproduce this last night – sesame seed crust, ginger/avocado puree, pickled radish, cucumber and jalapeno, vinegary slaw and soft taco – but didn’t come close. If you go to Shaw’s be sure to order the Bloody Mary which comes with a Lagunitas Pils chaser.

And we had an excellent dinner at Acadia, one of Chicago’s trendy restaurants – a knockout plate of salumi (Duck prosciutto and head cheese were among its highlights), a 63 degree egg with grits, asparagus and truffles that was spectacular, and Beez had fish with a frighteningly good potato puree with basil oil. The waiters were too young to be condescending or pretentious. The customers were talking and laughing, not the reverent, hushed foodies you often encounter in places like this. And the bill was reasonable. I recommend it highly – but brace yourself for the uncomfortably nervous (but knowledgeable) bartender.

The other keeper of the week was the 11:00 choir at Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago. I have never seen a more varied collection of human beings, from tiny (hood ornament size) to tall, obese to skinny, young to old. But the voices, my God were they beautiful. I think we should raise money and buy a condo for Rick in Chicago so that he can sing with this group.

I have to add the fine breakfast at O’Hare Airport at Wolfgang Puck’s café to the list. The crispy potatoes were spectacular. (I’m guessing that most of you are more likely to be in O’Hare Airport than to be spending a long weekend in Chicago – though do that, if you can. It’s a great city – the architecture and cleanliness of the downtown area is unmatched by any city in the U.S.)