26.6.11

divine dining

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Please excuse my absence, I took a little vacation. I felt the need to go visit my greatest friend Victoria in Chicago. I hadn't seen her in two years and I had never been to Chi-town... no brainer. Found a ridiculously affordable ticket just one week before the trip and purchased it! I can honestly say that was the best impulsive move I've ever made and I could never begin to express my happiness or explain that priceless time spent with my best friend. It's really amazing how we can go for months without talking and years without seeing each other but when we come together, we connect. It's almost as if we need to check in and grace one other with our presence every once in a while, and during that brief period we squeeze in years worth of growing. I feel like a more confident, aware, inspired, and powerful Katie after my Chicago experience. The food was superb also :)


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Thai at CoZy noodle & rice was so ridiculously good we had to eat there twice
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Fresh spring roll stuffed with cooked bean curd, bean sprout, cucumber, omelet and topped with tamarind sauce
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Wheat flour pastries filled with a luscious blend of shrimp and garden vegetables. Served with homemade sesame sauce
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Crispy fresh cucumber with sweet and sour dressing topped with onions
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Pad Thai - Stir-fried thin rice noodles with bean sprouts, green onion, egg, ground peanuts (on the side) and slice lime
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Vegetable fried rice
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green tea mochi with red bean filling
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Bahai House of Worship

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The Bahai was unbelievable. The building itself was astonishing but the beauty that surrounded it was equally impressive. We wandered around there for a while just soaking it all in.   

BIG STAR



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Michelada tecate with a salted rim, lime and salsa


The tacos at Big Star were out of this world. They don't have a website! But I strongly suggest you check out their menu. The price is right and the food is amazing. 
 
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Handlebar salad- arugula, pears, walnuts, parmesan with champagne honey mustard dressing (I subbed parm for goat)
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Buffalo 'Chicken' wrap - chicken-style seitan, wing sauce, romaine, red onion, tomatoes, and vegan ranch dressing
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Smoked gouda mac n' cheese

Wow! This meal was awesome. Victoria had been raving about the delicious buffalo chicken seitan wrap at Handlebar and it truly owned up to all the hype. It was just the right amount of spicy, crunchy, chewy, and flavor. This plus the velvety, mild and comforting mac n' cheese and the absolute perfect salad... that's feel-good-food.

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classic gazpacho
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green apple slaw
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Chickpea sandwich - marinated chickpeas, preserved lemon, red pepper, garlic carrots, greens, multi-grain bread
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I want to eat EVERYTHING on the Birchwood Kitchen menu. I'm begging you to take a look for yourself and please disagree with me because that is seriously one of the best looking menus I've ever seen. The gazpacho was superbly refreshing, every clean spoonful was a splash of tomatoey goodness- I think delightful would be the best way to describe this bowl of love. The chickpea sandwich was lemony fresh! I thought we were ordering something like a hummus sandwich but some of the chickpeas were still intact, herby, and flavorful. We knew right off the bat to order the green apple slaw and it was even better than we expected. I feel in love with this little healthy homecooked cafe and I hope to have a place like this someday. If you live in Chicago, go.

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