Have you ever heard of the phrase “post prandial narcolepsy?”  It is defined as that state of sleepiness that we sometimes feel after eating a large meal. I am tweaking the definition to also include the state of sleepiness that occurs after a weekend of eating dozens of little meals at Chicago Gourmet, which occurred this weekend at Millennium Park in Chicago. With Mother Nature providing sun and temperatures in the 70’s, hundreds of Chicago’s finest chefs came out and not only entertained our palates with their cuisine but also entertained us with numerous cooking demonstrations, book signings, seminars and friendly “smackdowns.”  (I’ll do aRead More →

I must say this last month has been a bit crazy and I just figured out why.  September is National Honey Month and I have been busy as a bee!!! With beekeeping and all the positive press lately on the benefits of honey, I had to see what all the buzz was about!  Luckily, The Artisan Table at the Chicago Marriott Naperville (1801 North Naper Boulevard . Naperville, Illinois) was kind enough to host a media dinner this week to celebrate everything HONEY! Not just any honey but local honey…and I mean LOCAL.  On the roof of the Marriott, there are over 60,000 honeybees (6Read More →

Articles in magazines, countless cookbooks, numerous television shows and recreational classes have all taught me one thing….how to cook.  But even after all this research, I’ve always had the desire to be better and really have unbridled confidence in the kitchen. So when the challenge of taking a 3-day workshop called “A Taste of Northern Italy” came up at Le Cordon Bleu, I accepted. Le Cordon Bleu has just launched a new series of Bleu Ribbon Kitchen Workshops that can be 5, 3, or 2 days.  The students are engulfed in the Le Cordon Bleu lifestyle with professional kitchens, amazing chef instructors, and itineraries setRead More →

“Four Chefs.  Four Styles.  One Cuisine.”  On Saturday, September 14, I had the pleasure of watching four of the leading experts in Mexican cuisine (maybe I should call them “mexperts”)come together in a friendly face off to benefit the Full Tuition Frontera Scholarship at Kendall College in Chicago. The morning started with a custom Mezcal breakfast cocktail with egg white foam from Wahaka (more on them later) and an intimate auditorium full of excited spectators.  We all were adrenalized with anticipation of learning new ways to cook and prepare everyone’s favorite food…Mexican!! The engaging moderation from NPR’s Peter Sagal instantly let the room feel a connection withRead More →

I did something that was completely off the hook this week.  I decided to go fishing for some answers about, well, fish.  More specifically, the availability of fish and shellfish in the Midwest. One of the most frequent emails I receive after doing a tasting at a restaurant is that “I am sure your meal was good but fish in the Midwest can NEVER be as good as something from the coast.” ARghh!  It is really aggravating.  That is like me saying you can only get good corn here in Indiana.  (Bring on the emails!) I am here to school the naysayers on what happensRead More →

Let’s admit it ladies.  We all know the men in our lives have fantasies.  Some admit it with no hesitation but there are others who adamantly deny that anything like that ever goes on in their head. The real truth comes out when you say something to your spouse and he doesn’t hear you right.  Next thing you know there is COMPLETE miscommunication and one of you ends up disappointed.  (Odds are he is the one disappointed because I’m not freaky like him.) Well this week my husband, Earl, and I are celebrating our 15th wedding anniversary.  After so many years, I know which sideRead More →

For anyone who has followed my blog over the past 2 and half years, you know that I poke some fun at my husband, Earl, on a regular basis.  I will admit that there are times I exaggerate his buffoonery and antics.  (The scary thing is that there are a lot times I’m not!) Well today I thought I would shout out some praise for him because he just hit a huge milestone in his life.  (Nope, it wasn’t his recently celebrated birthday.)  It s a milestone that I just don’t hear people talking about any more.   He just celebrated his 20th year at hisRead More →