VOLUME 2 ISSUE 3 SPRING 2014
UNIVERSITY iCE PLUS
EASY RIBS Fall-off-the-bone good without a grill
Our picks for the best outdoor dining spots EXCLUSIVE
Boltwood: A Restaurant from Start to Finish
A FROZEN TREAT
FOR THE SUMMER Five Delicious Popsicle Recipes
[EXPERIENCE LYFE IN EVANSTON]
1603 Orrington Ave. Evanston, IL 60201 lyfekitchen.com
VOLUME 2 \ ISSUE 3 \ SPRING 2014
Spring Fling with Spoon Pretty much the day the snow melts off the ground and temperatures start to creep toward the 60s, the beach Snapchats start rolling in and students flood campus like an army uniformed in shorts and tees. It suddenly seems like the student body has magically doubled and you can just feel the elation that the brutal Chicago winter is finally over. (Until it decides to snow mid-April, but let’s pretend that didn’t happen.) This issue, we wanted to touch upon all of the beauties of spring quarter, perhaps our most cherished time of the school year. From the glory of juicy summer fruits and spiked lemonade, to Mason jar salads and the best outdoor dining spots in Chicago, there’s nothing like warm weather to inspire you to eat well and explore the city. We even made ice pops from scratch (damn, those were good) and roasted an entire rack of ribs in an off-campus kitchen. We proved to ourselves that it can be done — now seriously, you should try it too. With summer break just a few weeks away, seize the newfound energy and excitement that spring brings us all and get adventurous. Happy eating, facebook.com/NUSpoon
Andrea Kang & Aurelie Corinthios Editors
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COVER PHOTO BY RAFI LETZTER
06 08 13 14 16 37 42
R S YOU WHAT’ AM DRE EAM ICE CR R? O FLAV
Banana peanut butter brownie en goste , man om o g n a M ardam and c
a. Rea lly
EDITORS Andrea Kang, Aurelie Corinthios CREATIVE DIRECTOR KK Rebecca Lai PUBLISHER Caroline Koppel
MANAGING EDITOR Kendall Siewert AD SALES DIRECTOR Dan Lesser TREASURER James Hu MARKETING/PR DIRECTOR Jade Chen PHOTO DIRECTORS Daniel Schuleman, Rafi Letzter Reese’s VIDEO DIRECTOR Hyojin Park and WEB PHOTO EDITOR Lily Allen COPY EDITORS Eilis Lombard, Sophie Jacob, Emily Wickwire DESIGN EDITOR Ali Tomek
Peanut Butter Cups chocolate chip
Chelsea Renter, Kai Huang, Stephanie Marshall, Liza Keller, Tara Longardner, Arielle Cooper, Sarah Munger, Leanna Smith, Jenny Schackett, Analiese Trimber, Katherine Dempsey, Angela Lin, Jessica Yang, Maddy Shannon, George Markoulakis, Lauren Feld, Hannah Kliot, Abby Reisinger, Ashley Gilmore, Kendra Valkema, Amanda Gajdosik, Megan Suckut, Jack Wiefels
ith DESIGNERS el w Horchata m a t Ashley Wu, Kyle Hancher, Liv Marcus ar nu c o t c sal d co VIDEO TEAM Sea oaste Anna Kranwinkle, Joanne Lee, Samantha Guff, Elena Besser, Katherine Way, Carson Brown, Emma Vicar, Karina Myrtil t PHOTOGRAPHERS
Kirby Barth, Bernard Wen, Hannah Lin, Alex Tom, Christine Chang, Emily Kim, Malia Hu, Ina Yang, Grégoire Durand, Astrid Goh, Naib Mian, Yair Sakols, Kai Huang, Piril Dobrucali MARKETING/PR TEAM
Andrea Cladek, Allison Stenclik, Arielle Miller, Ashley DuBois, Breanna Lucas, Genna Krecicki, Kristin Mathuny, Mariel Falk, Rachel Hirsch, Sam Spector, Samantha Meltzer, Marissa Karen, McKenzie Maxson, Somi Hubbard, Sarah Rense AD SALES TEAM
Lori Janjigian, Margaret Kuo, Cory Young, Kate Gladstone, Kathy Hong, Angela Sang, Donald Ho, Grant Rindner, Hannah Rose, Jane Herman, Susan Chen FACULTY ADVISOR
Maple honey bourbon with smoked bacon
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YOUR HEALTHY SERVING OF MIND-SNACKS
For the Love of Gin A fruity twist on a classic gin cocktail By Lauren Feld Congratulations, you’ve survived the polar vortex. You deserve a drink. Retire the hot toddy, the cider and the vanilla latte, because there’s no better way to toast to spring than with this easy summer refresher.
BLACKBERRY GIN FIZZ 5 MINUTES SERVES
WHAT ¼ cup blackberries 1 tablespoon Splenda (1 ½ packets)
2 tablespoons lime juice 1 shot gin Club soda
HOW PHOTO BY DANIEL SCHULEMAN
MASH blackberries, lime juice and Splenda in glass with fork, or purée in blender. 2
STIR in gin.
TOP with soda until drink reaches desired strength.
OF ALL THE GIN JOINTS IN ALL THE TOWNS, IN ALL THE WORLD, SHE WALKS INTO MINE. — RICK BLAINE, CASABLANCA NU.SPOONUNIVERSITY.COM |5
AVOCADO 101 It’s as popular as Regina George. By Angela Lin
BASIC GUACAMOLE EASY 7 MINUTES SERVES
NUTRITION FACTS Although avocados are among the most caloric produce, their high monounsaturated fat content keeps you fuller longer and allows for easier absorption of other nutrients. Avocados also contain more potassium by weight than a banana and more than half of your daily recommended intake of fiber at 13 grams.
WHAT 2 avocados, cubed 5 sprigs cilantro, minced 1 lime, juiced Salt and pepper to taste
MASH avocado in bowl with fork. 2
MIX in lime juice and cilantro.
HOW TO STORE
In general, store avocados in the fridge, but keep unripe ones at room temperature away from sunlight to ripen. To speed up the ripening process, store avocados in a brown paper bag with fruits like bananas or apples. Cut avocados should be covered with plastic wrap to prevent oxidation (aka browning) and stored in the fridge. To be on the safe side, squeeze lemon juice on the sliced avocado before wrapping.
SEASON with salt and
HOW TO TELL IF AN AVOCADO IS RIPE
HOW TO SLICE AN AVOCADO
With a sharp knife, slice the avocado in half lengthwise along the pit.
Open the avocado to expose the pit.
With one smooth movement, lodge your knife into the pit. Then wiggle the pit gently out of the avocado.
Firmly grasp the pit with a paper towel and carefully slide it off the knife.
Slice the avocado into cubes or slices and then scoop out the flesh with a spoon.
PHOTOS BY DANIEL SCHULEMAN
Lightly squeeze the avocado; it should be firm but yield to slight pressure. If the avocado is ripe, the stem should come off easily and the color underneath should be yellow-green. If the color is brown, it’s probably overripe. If the stem doesn’t come off easily, then the avocado is underripe and should sit for a few days.
On Tapa the World
The trendy serving style gets a college education. By Abby Reisinger
A big part of Spanish cuisine is about sharing small plates, conversation and the freedom to move around while eating — a concept ideal for college students. Tapas have been swept up by trendy restaurants across the states, but we prefer the kind you can make on a college budget and schedule.
SMOKED SALMON TOASTS EASY 10 MINUTES SERVES 4 slices bread of choice Cream cheese as needed 1 package smoked salmon 1 cucumber or 4 radishes, thinly sliced 1
TOAST bread until lightly golden brown but soft on inside. 2
SLICE toast into four triangles.
SPREAD triangles with cream cheese and top with smoked salmon. 4
ARRANGE slices of cucumber or
radish on top of salmon.
PHOTO BY DANIEL SCHULEMAN
FRIED HERBED ALMONDS EASY 10 MINUTES SERVES 3 tablespoons olive oil 2 cups whole blanched (skinless) almonds 2 tablespoons fresh thyme or rosemary leaves, chopped Salt and pepper to taste
HEAT olive oil in pan and add almonds. Cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly golden and fragrant, about 5-7 minutes. 2
STIR in herbs and cook for 1 minute.
TRANSFER to dish and season immediately with salt and pepper. Let cool before serving.
GARNISH WITH CHOPPED CHIVES OR DILL.
ITALIAN SAUSAGE BRAISED IN RED WINE EASY 30 MINUTES SERVES
½ pound Italian sausage, pricked throughout with fork ½ bottle dry red wine 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced 3 sprigs fresh herbs like oregano or thyme 4 strips orange zest, optional 1
PLACE all ingredients in medium saucepan; wine should come halfway up sides of sausage. 2
BRING to boil over medium-high heat and then reduce heat and let simmer. 3
FLIP sausage once, and cook until tender and liquid has been reduced by half, about 20 minutes. Discard zest and herbs. 4
REMOVE sausage from pan and slice on plate. Drizzle generously with wine sauce.
WHEN LIFE GIVES YOU LEMONS... Make lemonade, obviously. By Arielle Cooper PHOTOS BY DANIEL SCHULEMAN
MARGARITA LEMONADE EASY
5 MINUTES SERVES
Powdered lemonade mix Water
5 MINUTES SERVES
CHAMPAGNE LEMONADE EASY
WHAT 2 ounces tequila 2 tablespoons kosher or large crystal sea salt
Powdered lemonade mix Water
WHAT 6 ounces raspberries, lightly mashed
we used country time mix
MAKE 2 servings lemonade according to directions on package.
MAKE 2 servings lemonade according to directions on package.
Powdered lemonade mix 1-2 cups dry champagne
SALT rim of glass by dipping glass into water and then into plate of salt.
5 MINUTES SERVES
MAKE 2 servings lemonade according to directions on package.
MUDDLE raspberries in separate glass and then stir in lemonade.
STIR in champagne.
COMBINE lemonade and tequila in glass.
THE REAL DEAL SIMPLE SYRUP 1 cup water 1 cup sugar
If you want to go the homemade route, the ideal ratio is 2 ounces lemon juice to 4 ounces water to 4 ounces simple syrup. Here’s a quick breakdown of how to make simple syrup.
and water in small saucepan for 5 minutes.
ICE COLD LEMONADE! SWEET SUNSHINE IN YOUR MOUTH! BUY A GLASS OR I’LL PUNCH MY SISTER! — BART SIMPSON, THE SIMPSONS
and simmer for 5 more minutes, stirring often.
POUR into container and let cool at room temperature.
Life’s a Peach
Your guide to summer’s selection of stone fruits By Liza Keller Stone fruits, or fruits with a pit in the center, come into season in the beginning of June. These sweet and juicy summer staples will keep you cool even when temperatures rise. Learn how to make the best selections, and enjoy them as a late-afternoon snack or switch it up in the kitchen with mango salsa or a peach galette.
Nectarines Grab a nectarine for a boost of potassium. Two small nectarines have slightly more of this essential nutrient than a banana. Look for an evenly colored fruit that you are able to squeeze a little bit with minimal effort. If there is green by the stem or the fruit is too hard, it is not yet ripe.
Mangoes Mangoes are your summer superfruit, with over 20 vitamins and minerals and only 100 calories. Don’t judge a mango by its color — red does not mean ripe. Just squeeze it to make sure it isn’t too firm or too soft.
[GAZING AT THE GIANT PEACH] AUNT SPONGE: IT SMELLS DELICIOUS! AUNT SPIKER: NO! IT SMELLS LIKE MONEY. — JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH
Peaches When you’re picking a perfectly ripe peach, it should have a very fragrant “peachy” scent. An ideal peach should also give a little when you squeeze it. A red skin tone is indicative of variety, not ripeness.
PHOTO BY RAFI LETZTER
Apricots are a high source of fiber, potassium and vitamins. One cup has about a quarter of your daily vitamin C needs. When ripe, apricots should be yellow to deep orange with rosy touches. Avoid any with green coloring. The fruit should yield to gentle pressure and not be too hard or soft.
MANGO SALSA EASY
10 MINUTES SERVES 1
½ cup onion, chopped 2 tablespoons lemon juice 4 cups mango, diced 2 tablespoons fresh basil or mint, chopped 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar ½ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon sugar 2 tablespoons olive oil
WHISK together lemon juice, vinegar, olive oil, salt and sugar in bowl. 2
TOSS together mango, onions and basil or mint with dressing.
SERVE OVER CHICKEN OR PORK, OR ENJOY WITH TORTILLA CHIPS
PEACH GALETTE MEDIUM
30 MINUTES SERVES
1 store-bought pie crust 2 large peaches, peeled and thinly sliced 1 tablespoon butter, chilled and cubed 2 tablespoons granulated white sugar ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 egg
PLACE sliced peaches in neat pile in center, leaving 2-inch border. 4
MASH together sugar, butter and ground cinnamon in small bowl with fingers, and scatter small pieces of mixture over peaches. 5
FOLD edges of dough inwards, so that it’s slightly overlapping itself. 6
PREHEAT oven to 375˚F.
PLACE pie crust on baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
WHISK egg in small bowl to make egg wash. Brush edges of dough with egg wash. 7
BAKE for 20-25 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
GALETTES CAN BE MADE WITH ALMOST ANY FRUIT, TRY APPLES OR BERRIES.
WHAT’S YOUR PROBLEM? HERE’S THE ANSWER.
STACKS ON STACKS
CT WI S
A guilt-free breakfast By Sarah Munger The secret to healthier pancakes is spelt flour: a whole grain, non-wheat flour with higher amounts of protein. For those who like a hard workout, spelt improves muscle recovery, making these cakes great postworkout — or on a lazy Saturday morning.
SPELT PANCAKES EASY
15 MINUTES SERVES
PHOTO BY MALIA HU
WHAT ½ cup whole grain spelt flour 3 tablespoon light brown sugar, packed 3 teaspoon baking powder Pinch of baking soda 3 teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon cinnamon 3 cup choice of milk 3 tablespoons plain yogurt 1 large egg 1 tablespoon olive oil
COMBINE dry ingredients in bowl.
WHISK together milk, yogurt, egg and olive oil in second bowl. Stir into first mixture. 3
PREHEAT skillet over medium heat and brush with olive oil. 4
USE ladle or ¼ measuring cup to pour batter onto skillet. 5
FLIP cakes when bubbles start to form and cook until bottoms are golden brown, about 1 minute.
A SHMOKE AND A PANCAKE. YOU KNOW, A FLAPJACK UND A SHIGARETTE? NO? SHIGAR UND A WAFFLE? NO? PIPE UND A CREPE? NO? |13 BONG UND A BLINTZ? NO? WELL, THEN THERE ISH NO PLEASHING YOU. — GOLDMEMBER, AUSTINNU.SPOONUNIVERSITY.COM POWERS IN GOLDMEMBER
PHOTOS BY ANALIESE TRIMBER
EAS N ‘ ICK U Q
ON-THE-GO OPTIONS: ON A TOASTED BAGEL OR ENGLISH MUFFIN; WRAPPED IN A TORTILLA
Rise and Swine Don’t ignore the most important meal of the day. By Analiese Trimber
ere’s a recipe that proves you don’t need much for a great meal — just eight minutes, one slice of bacon, some veggies, a couple eggs and a frying pan.
BREAKFAST SCRAMBLE EASY
8 MINUTES SERVES
1 slice bacon, diced ¼ cup veggies of your choice, diced 2 eggs, whisked Salt and pepper to taste
OTHER COMBOS SWEET POTATO AND PANCETTA
FETA, TOMATO, SPINACH
SMOKED SALMON, DILL, CREAM CHEESE
TOFU, SWISS CHEESE, MUSHROOMS
5 COOK bacon over medium-low heat for
MOZZARELLA, PESTO, TOMATO
2-3 minutes, or until nearly cooked. 2
ADD diced veggies and sauté until tender, about 1 minute. 3
ADD eggs to pan and cook about 1 minute until done, stirring occasionally.
SALSA, BLACK BEANS, PEPPERJACK CHEESE
PHOTO BY PIRIL DOBRUCALI
P SUMMER SOU
PLAY IT COOL All the comforts of soup transformed for summer By Leanna Smith Gazpacho is a chilled soup made for a hot summer day. It doesn’t require any cooking, which means more time in the sunshine and less time in the kitchen. Just toss ripe spring vegetables like tomato, peppers and onions into a blender to create a refreshing, nutritious meal in less than 10 minutes.
10 MINUTES SERVES WHAT
2 large tomatoes, seeded and chopped 1 large cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped 1 onion, peeled and chopped 1 pepper, seeded and chopped 1 12-ounce can regular tomato juice 1 cup Bloody Mary mix 3 cup balsamic vinegar 1 clove garlic, split and chopped 1 tablespoon lemon juice Salt and pepper to taste
PURÉE all ingredients in blender until smooth.
SEASON with salt and pepper.
CHILL in refrigerator until ready to serve.
GARNISH with avocado or cucumber
REVENGE, LIKE GAZPACHO SOUP, IS A DISH BEST SERVED COLD, PRECISE AND MERCILESS. — PHANTOM LIMB, THE VENTURE BROTHERS
MASON JAR SALAD BAR Release your inner hipster. By Stephanie Marshall When you’re trying to squeeze in lunch between classes, it can be hard to stay healthy. We all love grabbing a slice of pizza now and then, but sometimes you need some greens and vegetables to keep you going
throughout the day. Packing a custom salad for lunch will take you less than 10 minutes, and in case you haven’t noticed, everything is better in a mason jar.
STRAWBERRY, SP AND BALSAMIC S
PHOTO BY BERNARD WEN
Tortilla chips, crushed
Cherry tomatoes, halved Chicken breast, cubed Cheddar cheese, shredded Black beans Avocado-lime or ranch dressing
HOW TO MAKE YOUR SALAD:
START with your dressing at
the bottom of the mason jar. The idea is to keep it far away from the leafy greens to make sure they donâ€™t get soggy.
BEGIN with the sturdiest and
least absorbent ingredients at the bottom, and work your way to the top. If you use one of our recipes, just add the ingredients in the order they are listed.
Y, SPINACH IC SALAD
TOP with a hefty serving of greens,
and seal the lid.
4 SHAKE the sealed jar to distribute
the dressing before pouring into a bowl.
CHICKEN, AVOCADO AND TOMATO SALAD
Red onions, sliced
Parmesan cheese, shredded
Avocado, cubed Toasted pecans, chopped or whole Chicken breast, cubed Fresh mozzarella cheese, cubed Cherry tomatoes, halved Balsamic vinaigrette Red wine vinaigrette
Back away from the delivery man. By Sophie Jacob We all love pizza. It’s versatile, delicious and difficult to ruin. Although greasy pizza may sound great after a long night out, it can’t compete with the freshness and gourmet feel of a homemade pie. Next time you have people over for dinner, or just want to treat yourself, follow this ultra easy guide to amping up your pizza. All it takes is store-bought pizza dough and a little creativity.
PHOTO BY ANDREA KANG
PROSCIUTTO & ARUGULA PIZZA 15 MINUTES SERVES WHAT ½ package Trader Joe’s fresh pizza dough 1 cup arugula ½ cup Parmesan cheese 4 slices prosciutto ½ cup cherry tomatoes, halved (optional)
PREHEAT oven to 500˚F.
PULL pizza dough gently into thin circle. It doesn’t have to be perfect. 3
SPRINKLE with Parmesan and bake in oven for 10-12 minutes, until golden brown and cheese is melted. 4
TOP with prosciutto, arugula and cherry tomatoes.
THE PERFECT LOVER IS ONE WHO TURNS INTO A PIZZA AT 4 AM. — CHARLES PIERCE 18 |
FAKE & BAKE
Say goodbye to greasy fingers and hello to healthy chips. By Maddy Shannon
PHOTO BY RAFI LETZTER
We want chips that crunch — chips that sound as good as they taste. When it comes to baked chips, low and slow is the way to go to ensure maximum crunch and minimal chew.
SWEET POTATO CHIPS EASY
APPLE CHIPS EASY
2 HOURS SERVES WHAT
2 Golden Delicious apples 1 tablespoon cinnamon 1 tablespoon sugar
SLICE apples horizontally as thinly as
possible (use mandolin if you have one). 2
LAY slices on baking sheet with little
2 HOURS SERVES
KALE CHIPS EASY 10-15 MINUTES SERVES
WHAT 2 sweet potatoes 1 tablespoon olive oil 1-2 teaspoons salt Sprinkle of cinnamon or cumin (optional)
WHAT 1 bunch kale 1 tablespoon olive oil 1-2 teaspoons salt 3 tablespoons Parmesan cheese ½ lemon, juiced
SLICE sweet potatoes as thinly as possible (use mandolin if you have one).
CUT or tear stems off kale leaves. Rip leaves into bite-sized pieces.
LAY slices on baking sheet with little overlap. DRIZZLE slices with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. 4
WASH and dry leaves, then place
TOSS kale with oil to evenly coat leaves.
LAY onto baking sheet and sprinkle
COMBINE sugar and cinnamon, and
sprinkle over both sides of apple slices.
SPRINKLE slices with cinnamon for sweeter chips, or use cumin for spiced chips.
BAKE for two hours at 250˚F, flipping
them over halfway through.
them over halfway through.
BAKE for 10-15 minutes at 350˚F.
LET chips crisp as they cool.
LET chips crisp as they cool.
BAKE for two hours at 250˚F, flipping LET chips crisp as they cool.
with salt. 5
ADD grated Parmesan and lemon juice if desired.
By Chelsea Renter, Eilis Lombard, Hannah Kliot, Jenny Schackett, Jessica Yang and Jack Wiefels
PHOTO BY GRĂ‰GOIRE DURAND
Spring has sprung. Ditch stuffy restaurants and dine outside.
PHOTO BY ANDREA KANG, PHOTO COURTESY OF TIM SACKTON
When summer hits, there is nothing better than quality food in a hip, bustling atmosphere. Big Star in Wicker Park delivers just that. While it may lack variety — it has a small, one-page menu of primarily tacos — you can count on each dish to pack a serious punch. One of the main appeals of Big Star is its huge patio. Twinkling lights and casual, bright yellow chairs create a laid-back, fun vibe perfect for a summer dining spot. The place gets crowded, so plan to wait a while (often over an hour) for your table. Roam the streets of Wicker Park’s hipster paradise while you wait, or, if you’re in a rush, head over to the walk-up window to get your food to-go in just a matter of minutes.
Located in the heart of Little Italy, Davanti Enoteca is a beloved neighborhood eatery and the product of restaurateur Scott Harris’ extensive travels throughout the Italian countryside. Davanti’s small plates have a way of making the simple delightful. The light, straightforward flavors of the classic cacao e pepe, a spaghetti dish with just three ingredients (pasta, black pepper and pecorino cheese) shine beautifully. On the heavier side, the combination of thick egg yolk, truffle oil and melted fontina in the egg truffle toast is wonderfully rich and savory. But the rooftop patio showcases the best of Davanti: charming foliage and light bulbs strung above diners’ heads make for a cozy, picturesque environment. When the weather gets balmy, it’s an ideal escape.
1359 W Taylor St, Chicago Mon-Thur 11:30am-10pm, Fri 11:30am-12am, Sat 11am-12am, Sun 11am-10pm (312) 226-5550
(cash-only) 1531 N Damen, Chicago Bar: Sun-Fri 11:30am-2am; Sat 11:30am-3am. Kitchen & to-go window: Sun-Fri 11:30am-1:30am; Sat 11:30am-2:30am (773) 235-4039
CHICAGO FIREHOUSE As the name suggests, this Chicago hotspot was originally a firehouse for the Prairie Avenue area and surrounding neighborhoods. The ambience indoors is dim enough for a date night, but the outdoor patio (which used to be the garage of the firehouse) is ideal for a more casual meal. Many customers come for its delicious steaks and the famous burger, served with caramelized onions, aged cheddar and bacon. There are also various seafood dishes like the charred baby octopus served with roasted pepper, olive, tomato and a grilled baguette.
1401 S Michigan Ave, Chicago Mon-Thur 11:30am-10pm, Fri 11:30am-11pm, Sat 4pm-11pm, Sun 9:30am-10pm (312) 786-1401
YOU WANNA TAKE THIS SHIT OUTSIDE? YOU WANNA JUST TAKE IT OUTSIDE AND JUST SQUASH IT? — ROMANY MALCO, THE 40-YEAR-OLD VIRGIN
THE PURPLE PIG Just a few steps off Michigan Ave, this gastropub embodies all the urban liveliness that pervades the late night Chicago scene. The kitchen is open until 1 am, and is famous for its diverse collection of smears and cheeses, as well as clever small plates like pig’s ear with crispy kale, fried egg and pickled cherry peppers. Diners enjoy their meals on red leather bar stools at long, communal tables, and the overhanging patio gives the impression of being suspended within the city amongst its skyscrapers.
500 N Michigan Ave, Chicago Sun-Thur 11:30am-12am (kitchen open until 1am) Fri-Sat 11:30am-2am (kitchen open until 1am) (312) 464-1744
TAPAS BARCELONA If you don’t want to spend time trekking downtown on a beautiful day, Tapas Barcelona is a great outdoor dining option right here in Evanston. Tapas serves savory Spanish small plates, as well as a delicious red wine sangria. You can order traditional Spanish fare, like grilled steak and paella, or sample some more gourmet bites like bacon-wrapped dates and baked snails. On a warm summer evening, walking just a few minutes away to this patio is an easy way to enjoy dinner and a pitcher of sangria — or two.
1729 N Halsted St, Chicago Sun-Thur 5pm-10pm, Fri-Sat 5pm-11pm (312) 337-6070
1615 Chicago Ave, Evanston Mon-Thur 11:30am-2:30pm, 5pm-10pm, Fri-Sat 11:30am2:30pm, 5pm-11pm, Sun 5pm-9pm (847) 866-9900
RIVERS Overlooking the Chicago River, this contemporary Euro-American bistro has one of the Chicago dining’s best panoramas. Although Rivers is known for its seafood, consider ordering the teriyaki tenderloin served with oranges, chives and sesame seeds as an appetizer. Each bite-sized piece is juicy, savory and not too chewy. For the main course, you can’t go wrong with the grilled mahi mahi, served with sesame-glazed baby bok choy, shiitake mushrooms, red peppers and ginger soy cream. If you aren’t in the mood for seafood, the chicken farfalle is a rightfully popular choice.
30 S Wacker Drive, Chicago Mon-Thur 7am-9pm, Fri 7am-9:30pm, Sat 5pm-9pm, Sun 4:30pm-9pm (312)-559-1515
THE BONGO ROOM This Chicago favorite, with locations in Andersonville, Wicker Park and near the South Side, focuses on serving the freshest and most unique breakfast and brunch fare available. The Bongo Room closest to campus in Andersonville has a cozy outside dining area that has opened just in time to welcome spring. Look for unexpected twists on familiar brunch standards, like red velvet pancakes or a sweet potato and black bean burrito.
5022 N Clark, Chicago (see website for other locations) Mon-Fri 8am-2pm, Sat-Sun 9am-2pm (773) 728-7900
PHOTO BY ELLEN BARRY AND AURELIE CORINTHIOS
If you feel like you deserve a treat for surviving one of the coldest Chicago winters on record, Boka is the perfect remedy for polar-vortex-induced malaise, with its Michelin-starred cuisine, top-notch service and beautiful outdoor patio. As part of the Boka Restaurant group (which includes the likes of Girl and the Goat and GT Fish & Oyster), it features the same meticulous attention to detail and trendy creativity as its sister restaurants. The seasonal menu offers options like the blissfully light asparagus and arctic char salad and the citrusy slow-cooked sea bass. The fenced-in patio is particularly charming, with brick walls, white-flowered trees and simple but elegant black iron-wrought chairs.
T S M O FR
T R A
H By George Markoulakis
It’s easy for patrons to overlook a restaurant’s design. For those that approach dining from a utilitarian point-of-view, we dine out to eat and to nourish our bodies. But for those that take a holistic view of the dining experience, quality restaurant design is vital. And we’re not just talking about Mason jar lighting. In order to learn more about the design industry, I spoke with James Geier, founder of 555 International, an award-recognized restaurant design, fabrication and development company. They’ve played a hand in designing a few of 24 |
Chicago’s most popular restaurants like Girl & the Goat, GT Fish & Oyster and Perennial Virant. Most recently, they’ve taken on Boltwood, the restaurant replacing the space that used to be Lulu’s, next to Argo Tea on Davis Street. Geier and I chatted on the phone and he proceeded to detail the finer points of design, as well as major trends. “If the menu is the restaurant’s spirit, then what does that make the interior?” I asked. His immediate response: “The body.” The interior determines how the space looks, feels, works and moves. In effect, a restaurant’s design gifts a previously bland block of square footage with PHOTOS COURTESTY OF KARA MANN DESIGN, PHOTO BY YAIR SAKOLS ALL INFORMATION AS OF MAY 10TH
tches design swa
creates a calming atmosphere and organic feel. The communal table consists of dark, deep brown woods, while the face of the bar is a medium-tone and the chairs and barstools, a warm black. There will also be a few playful, yet elegant, antique pieces that help complete the layering of a “modern clean with warm and simple” concept. Re-imagined dining spaces like this tend to boast dynamic menus in dressed down spaces. Think of Chicago’s Longman & Eagle, which opened in 2010 and has thrived since. Chef Jared Wentworth’s work at the gastropub and whiskey bar has earned it a Michelin star, while the restaurant continues to offer an affordable menu that features rethought classics like a Wild Boar Sloppy Joe. No other restaurant gives a better image of the ‘upscale casual’ vibe that has dominated the industry in the last five years.
location INGT ON
A restaurant’s design gifts a previously bland block of square footage with a personality.
final blue print
conservative budgeting amongst investors, restaurants and consumers, and perhaps even the fall of white tablecloth dining. The responsibility of maintaining the restaurant’s vision has also increasingly moved from investor to chef, leading to new opportunity for experimentation and innovation. Designers managed to cover up restaurant cost-cutting as urban chic endorsed minimalism (communal tables, anyone?). And despite the shrinking wallets of diners, restaurants in dining hotspots such as San Francisco, New York and Chicago have been growing at a faster rate than that of general economic output. This success is something Geier believes comes from the industry’s adoption of the contemporary “urban chic” trend, redeveloping dilapidated old buildings into hip restaurants. Boltwood itself capitalizes on this very aesthetic. The restaurant’s interior design includes approximately 65 seats with a small communal table at the center, banquet seating around the perimeter of the space, and a pristine wood and stone countertop. Rich black concrete floors will play off of the cool, oyster-grey plastered walls, and the use of different woods
a personality, and “creates one entire being.” But this entity doesn’t just materialize on its own. The conception starts with the client. In Boltwood’s case, that would be John Kim, owner of Other Brother and Brother’s K Coffeehouses, and Brian Huston, former chef de cuisine at The Publican, who is leaving his title of head chef to start this new venture. From there, the process goes to the design firm, Kara Mann Design (KMD), with whom Huston and Kim are currently collaborating to bring their vision of a sharp, modern yet welcoming space to life. In most cases, Geier says, the chef or restaurateur will describe his or her general vision to 555, usually through a menu. Then, moving top-down, the client will describe the location and target customer. The collection of this information puts the pieces together in the designer’s mind, as he or she “comprehends what the customer will see when he enters the space, what he’ll see when he turns right and what he’ll see when he turns left.” Huston’s cooking consists of clean, simple New American cuisine, and Boltwood’s menu will feature this style through seasonal fare. According to Kim, the restaurant will bring something new and exciting to the city of Evanston, while creating a setting that also feels like home. Imagine quality protein, fresh produce and fish and oyster selections — something the Evanston dining scene sees very little of. So how does a designer take a menu’s outlook and transpose it into the interior design? The ultimate goal is to create a quality, feel-good environment, in which the customer discovers something new every time he or she visits. According to Geier, a great designer can strike the delicate balance between a customer’s comfort level and excitement. His description sounds like the qualities that make a good book: a clear and concise vision with a bit of escapism and a final denouement. And like creating a long-form novel, Kara Mann of KMD went through several design iterations before arriving at the final concept. Although the design of the restaurant’s foundations are on the modern end of the spectrum, she said she worked to ensure that the space feels inviting for diners. One such detail: the space’s corners are curved to give a cozier ambience. There is also laced drapery that will hang from the front window to convey a sense of home. Recent trends dominating the restaurant design landscape revolve around a story of sorts, as well. Geier credits the recent economic downturn to a shift in the industry, resulting in more
Beyond major trends, basic design elements also affect consumer behavior and attitude, which has a direct correlation with repeat business. Dead spaces filled with awkward seating, swinging kitchen doors and views of bathrooms from seats are mistakes that will hurt the client’s bottom line. An even more common form of “bad” design comes in the form of overdoing, said Mann. The fact that all of these layers from conception to execution transformed the initial empty drywalled space into the finished product that is Boltwood in three weeks is the real beauty of restaurant design. Now the space has its body, and don’t just credit the food when you decide to dine there for a second time. NU.SPOONUNIVERSITY.COM |25
I WANT MY BABY BACK, BABY BACK, BABY BACK. I WANT MY BABY BACK, BABY BACK, BABY BACK. I WANT MY BABY BACK, 26 | BACK, BABY BACK. CHILI’S BABY BACK RIBS, BARBECUE SAUCE. — ‘N SYNC, CHILI’S COMMERCIAL BABY
CKIN’ I L R E G Y, FIN C U A S , Y ANG U MEAT H I A K BY
HERE’S NO DOUBT
that traditional barbecue ribs from smokehouses are amazing, but the craft that goes into them takes a lot of time and effort. Fortunately, you can produce tender and juicy ribs in less than half the time in your own oven.
+ BABY BACK RIBS MEDIUM
1 HOUR 50 MINUTES SERVES
2 pounds baby back ribs ¼ cup brown sugar ½ teaspoon black pepper 2 tablespoons smoked paprika 1 tablespoon onion powder 1 ¼ teaspoons garlic powder or 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 ½ teaspoons salt Mustard ¾ cup barbecue sauce +
PREHEAT oven to 350˚F.
COMBINE all dry ingredients to make rub.
PAT ribs dry and remove membrane (the white skin on backside of ribs). TO REMOVE: Insert small knife between membrane and bone at one end of ribs and wiggle to loosen. Work your fingers under skin and gently pull off skin from one end to other, using paper towel for better grip if necessary. EVEN EASIER: Ask your butcher to remove the membrane for you. + +
SPREAD enough mustard to coat both sides of ribs. MASSAGE rub generously onto both sides of ribs.
LINE baking pan with foil. Wrap ribs tightly with foil and place on pan, bone side down. TIP 1: Place second pan lined with foil on bottom of oven to catch any drippings. You’ll need it. TIP 2: Let the ribs come to room temperature before roasting to ensure even cooking through to the bone. +
ROAST for one hour. Remove ribs from oven, unwrap and slather with barbecue sauce. Return to oven unwrapped for 30 minutes.
TURN PAGE FOR SAUCE RECIPE
LET rest for 10 minutes and serve. PHOTOS BY RAFI LETZTER, LETTERING BY ASHLEY WU
HOMEMADE BARBECUE SAUCE
There are plenty of options for store-bought barbecue sauce, but many are laden with high fructose corn syrup and dull in flavor. Why settle for boring when you can whip up your own batch, customized to your taste? This basic recipe gives you all the right bold, sweet and tangy flavors.
EASY 20 MINUTES SERVING 1 CUP
+ BAKED BARBECUE WINGS EASY
30 MINUTES SERVES
1 pound chicken wings 3 cup barbecue sauce Salt and pepper to taste
PREHEAT oven to 375˚F.
REMOVE tips of wings with shears or knife if they have tips. Find joint between wing and tip and cut right through it. Discard tips. +
SEASON wings lightly with salt and pepper.
BAKE in oven for 20 minutes on baking sheet lined with parchment paper or tin foil.
REMOVE and let cool for 1 minute. Toss in bowl with barbecue sauce.
PLACE back in oven and bake for 10 more minutes.
1 cup Heinz ketchup ½ cup water ¼ cup balsamic vinegar 4 tablespoons brown sugar ½ teaspoon pepper 1 tablespoon mustard ½ teaspoon onion powder ½ teaspoon garlic powder +
COMBINE all ingredients in medium saucepan and bring to boil. +
SIMMER uncovered and stir frequently until sauce is nearly reduced by half and takes on rich brown color, about 20 minutes. +
LET cool and store in refrigerator for up to 10 days.
CAN BE S B U R IMPLE VOR QUICK, S UNLOCKING FLA TO THE KEY YOUR MEAT. IN OSIK D J A G A D BY AMAN
WET SUGAR + BROWN HERB ½ cup brown sugar 3 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped Salt to taste
+ MARGARITA 1 lemon, juiced and zested 2 limes, juiced and zested 2 tablespoons tequila 1 tablespoon sugar 2 cloves of garlic, chopped Pinch of cayenne Pinch of pepper Salt to taste
½ cup freshly ground coffee 2 teaspoons pepper 1 ½ teaspoon paprika 1 teaspoon cayenne ½ teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon dry mustard 2 tablespoons brown sugar Salt to taste
½ cup olive oil 1 teaspoon onion powder 1 teaspoon garlic powder ½ teaspoon pepper ½ tablespoon dried oregano ½ tablespoon dried rosemary 1 tablespoon dried basil ½ tablespoon dried parsley Salt to taste NU.SPOONUNIVERSITY.COM |29
Ice,Ice Baby Summer’s arrived. Here’s everything you need to know about frozen treats — from how to make fancy homemade popsicles (way easier than you think), and how to blend frozen bananas into amazing two-step ice cream, to the best alternative ice cream options for you poor dairy-free souls.
PHOTOS BY RAFI LETZTER
THE COLD NEVER BOTHERED ME, ANYWAY. — ELSA, FROZEN 30 |
WANT THE RECIPES? TURN THE PAGE FOR ICY NOMS
DIY ICE POPS
By Megan Suckut
Key Lime Pie Popsicles
LEVEL EASY OVERNIGHT SERVES 10
LEVEL EASY OVERNIGHT SERVES 10
1 cup orange juice 2 ½ cups vanilla ice cream 1 tablespoon orange zest 1 cup heavy whipping cream
¾ cup lime juice 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk 1 cup half-and-half Pinch of salt
BLEND orange juice, ice cream and orange zest in blender until smooth.
POUR mixture into popsicle molds, leaving top quarter of mold empty.
SPOON cream into top of mold and add popsicle sticks. 4
Grapefruit Margarita Popsicles
LEVEL EASY OVERNIGHT SERVES 10
WHISK together sugar and sangria until sugar is dissolved. FILL each mold three-fourths of the way with
add popsicle sticks. 4
LEVEL MEDIUM OVERNIGHT SERVES 10
¼ cup water ¼ cup sugar ½ cup fresh mint, chopped 4 cups seedless watermelon, cubed 2 limes, juiced 1
COMBINE grapefruit juice, lime juice, tequila and
POUR sangria mixture into popsicle molds and
¼ cup lime juice 3 cup tequila 4 cups grapefruit juice ¼ cup sugar 1
POUR mixture into popsicle molds and add popsicle sticks.
LEVEL EASY OVERNIGHT SERVES 10
3 cups nectarines, cubed ½ cup sugar 2 ½ cups red sangria
COMBINE juice, condensed milk, half-and-half and salt in medium bowl.
POUR mixture into popsicle molds and add popsicle sticks. FREEZE overnight.
COMBINE water, sugar and mint in mug to make simple syrup. Microwave for 1 minute, then remove mint leaves. 2
PURÉE watermelon, lime juice and simple syrup in blender. 3
STRAIN watermelon mixture to remove pulp.
POUR strained mixture into popsicle molds and add popsicle sticks.
THIS ONE’S 3 OUR FAVORITE CREAMSICLE
Homemade Alternative Ice Cream THIS S*#@ IS BANANAS (B-A-N-A-N-A-S)
You donâ€™t need an ice cream maker to indulge in cool summer treats. Frozen bananas make a creamy, neutral soft-serve base for all your favorite flavors and mix-ins. Just blend and freeze for two-step homemade ice cream. NUTELLA BANANA ICE CREAM 2 bananas, sliced and fully frozen 4 tablespoons Nutella or other hazelnut-chocolate spread 1
BLEND bananas in food processor or blender until consistency of soft-serve ice cream. 2
FOLD in Nutella. Transfer to container and freeze until solid.
COOKIE DOUGH BANANA ICE CREAM 2 bananas, sliced and fully frozen 6 tablespoons cookie dough, frozen and chopped into pieces (we used Pillsbury pre-formed cookie dough pieces) 1
BLEND bananas in food processor or blender until consistency of soft-serve ice cream. 2
FOLD in chopped pieces of cookie dough. Transfer to container and freeze until solid.
CINNAMON DULCE BANANA ICE CREAM 2 bananas, sliced and fully frozen 3 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk 2 teaspoons cinnamon 1
BLEND bananas, condensed milk and cinnamon in food processor or blender until consistency of soft-serve ice cream. 2
TRANSFER to container and freeze until solid.
PEACHES & CREAM BANANA ICE CREAM 2 bananas, sliced and fully frozen 3 cup frozen or fresh peaches 2 tablespoons sugar 2 tablespoons heavy cream 1
BLEND bananas, peaches, sugar and cream in food processor or blender until consistency of soft-serve ice cream. 2
TRANSFER to container and freeze until solid.
NO DAIRY, NO PROBLEM
FLAVORED ICE CUBES By Abby Reisinger
Use these recipes to keep your iced coffee caffeinated, your water zesty, your juice fresh, and any drink more beautiful.
Get your ice cream fix sans dairy. By Analiese Trimber
Times, they are a changin’. And by that we mean you can still enjoy your ice cream even if your diet is dairy-free. Supermarkets are now full of ice creams made from all varieties of milk, from coconut to soy to almond. For the purposes of this article, we tasted vanilla ice cream to provide an unbiased review across milk type and brand. 1 Pink lemonade & pomegranate seeds
Soy Milk Soy milk produces some of the creamiest and most real-tasting ice cream. On the downside, these soy-based creams are a little too sweet. Trader Joe’s With a creamy but not too creamy texture, a hint of nuttiness and a price that doesn’t break the bank, this is as good as it gets. Soy Dream Pretty good consistency, but it has a vanilla flavor that tastes more like the syrup in your latte.
2 Pineapple/orange juice & raspberries
So Delicious Ice cream is meant to be sweet, but it’s not meant to put you in a sugar coma. Steer clear of this one.
Coconut Milk Of all the non-dairy milks, coconut milk has the highest fat content, making it the best candidate for ice cream. While the amount of fat may turn some people off, remember that these are generally healthy fats.
Almond Milk Who knew it was even possible to get milk from an almond? Unfortunately, almond milk doesn’t translate well into ice cream, failing to deliver sufficient creaminess and strong vanilla flavor. So Delicious The creamiest of most almond milk options, it still leaves a somewhat funky and chemical-y aftertaste. Almond Dream Light and airy, this ice cream’s texture is almost reminiscent of whipped cream.
Rice Milk There aren’t that many options for rice milk-based ice cream, and for good reason. They tend to be far too sweet. Skip this option.
3 Coconut water & cucumber slices
Luna & Larry’s This ice cream isn’t cheap, but it’s worth it. Sweetened only by agave, it’s the most natural and real-tasting out of the bunch. So Delicious The texture is there, but the addition of certain chemicals gives this treat an undesirable aftertaste. Amy’s This ice cream is so soft and creamy it barely needs defrosting before scooping. Definitely a close tie between this one and Luna & Larry’s. Trader Joe’s Offered only in chocolate and strawberry flavors, this ice cream arguably has the best texture for coconut milk and is one of the least expensive options, too. The chocolate is a tad too rich to be enjoyed alone, but the strawberry is refreshing and well-complimented by the subtle coconut flavor in the background.
5 Lemonade & mint leaves
FROZEN TREATS, DECODED By Arielle Cooper sorbet and sherbet are often confused.
Sherbet or Sherbert WHAT IT IS A fruit-based product with sugar and a little cream. HOW IT’S MADE While it’s made with a process similar to that of ice cream, sherbet’s ingredient list leads to a different end result: a leaner treat that’s basically sorbet with some dairy added to it.
WHAT IT IS An entirely fruit-based frozen treat with a slightly icier texture. Around the world, sorbet often means different things, and even in the US,
HOW IT’S MADE Sorbet is made from simple syrup blended with fresh fruit, which is frozen solid and then puréed again before being completely frozen.
WHAT IT IS A tropical-born dessert hailing from Hawaii. It resembles a snowball soaked in colorful syrup.
Frozen Yogurt WHAT IT IS The healthier cousin of ice cream, it’s made with yogurt and sometimes other dairy products. Its yogurt base creates that distinct tart flavor and provides probiotics that help boost your immune system. HOW IT’S MADE Frozen yogurt is made either by adding yogurt culture to a cooled milk base, or by mixing a frozen yogurt
CHICAGO’S BEST ICE CREAM By Chelsea Renter
11 iCREAM CAFE If you’re looking for a one-of-akind ice cream experience, look no further. At iCream, you won’t find any pre-made ice cream or sorbet — you design your own frozen creation on the spot. First, select your dessert of choice: ice cream, yogurt, sorbet, a shake or even hot pudding. Next, pick your base: regular, light, organic, soy milk or regular/non-fat yogurt. Then, customize your dessert by selecting your flavor or combination of flavors, which can range from traditional vanilla or chocolate to exotic curry, green tea or cream soda. Finally, pick your fruit or candy toppings and watch as rapid freezing liquid nitrogen instantly transforms your custom creation into a frozen treat before your eyes.
powder with water and then slowly churning until frozen.
HOW IT’S MADE Shaved ice is made by finely shaving ice and generously drizzling the ice flakes with flavored syrup.
WHAT IT IS A decadent Italian ice cream made with milk, cream and various sugars and flavorings. HOW IT’S MADE While it has less fat because it’s mainly
made from milk instead of cream, gelato is richer and smoother because it is slowly churned. This minimizes how much air is whipped in during the freezing process and creates a denser product.
which creates a dense and smooth texture. It’s lighter than gelato as some air is incorporated.
Ice Cream WHAT IT IS A combination of milk, cream, sugar and sometimes eggs when it’s custard-based.
Custard WHAT IT IS A frozen dessert similar to ice cream but made with egg yolks in addition to cream and sugar. HOW IT’S MADE If you’ve ever been to Andy’s, you’ve seen the unique way that frozen custard is made: the chilled mixture is fed into a barrel that freezes the liquid quickly, then is scraped out by steel blades,
HOW IT’S MADE Ice cream begins with a liquid base that is churned in a frozen bowl until it reaches a soft-serve consistency, incorporating some air while preventing ice crystals from forming. This soft-serve is then frozen until it becomes ice cream. Ice cream falls in the middle of the spectrum and balances a delightful creaminess without being too heavy.
BLACK DOG GELATO
SCOOTER’S FROZEN CUSTRARD
Margie’s Candies has been serving up old school classics since 1921. With its retro parlor vibe and extensive list of old-fashioned delicacies such as sundaes, banana splits and malts, Margie’s transports you to a different era. Not only are they cranking out homemade ice cream, but they also hand-make candy like toffee, caramel, fudge and butterscotch to top off your frozen treat.
Scooter’s is a self-proclaimed “mom and pop custard shop.” Since 2003, they have been dishing out smooth, creamy custard in flavors like Reese’s, sea salt caramel, Almond Joy and raspberry crisp. They also make rich concretes and sundaes where delicious toppings are mixed in with your custard.
Black Dog Gelato provides the unique combination of artisanal products, fresh ingredients and incredibly unusual flavors. With options like goat cheese cashew caramel, sesame fig chocolate chip, Mexican hot chocolate and maple cayenne bacon, Black Dog has certainly achieved its goal. The original location in the Ukrainian Village is cash only; the Roscoe Village location accepts credit cards.
HOURS + LOCATIONS iCream Cafe 1537 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago (773) 342-2834 SPRING HOURS Mon-Thur 2pm-10pm, Fri 2pm11pm, Sat 1pm-11pm, Sun 1pm-10pm Black Dog Gelato Original Location: Ukranian Village
859 N Damen Ave, Chicago (773) 235-3116 HOURS Mon-Sun 12pm-12am Second Location: Roscoe Village 1955 W Belmont Ave, Chicago (773) 348-7935 HOURS Mon-Thur 2pm10pm, Fri 2pm-11pm, Sat 12pm-11pm, Sun 12pm-10pm
Margie’s Candies Original Location 1960 N Western Ave, Chicago (773) 384-1035 HOURS Mon-Sun 9am-12am Margie’s Candies on Montrose Avenue 1813 Montrose Ave, Chicago (773) 348-0400 HOURS Mon-Thur 9am-
10pm, Fri 9am-11 pm, Sat 10am-midnight, Sun 11am-10pm Scooter’s Frozen Custard 1658 W Belmont Ave, Chicago (773) 244-6415 HOURS Tues-Fri 2pm10pm, Sat 1pm-10pm, Sun 1pm-9pm, Closed Mondays, Labor Day to Memorial Day NU.SPOONUNIVERSITY.COM |35
KEEP YOURSELF ALIVE.
Top Your Toast PHOTO BY YAIR SAKOLS
Bruschetta from Sicily to Sargent By Tara Longardner Here’s something you might not have thought to make in the dining hall: baguette toast topped with any variety of salad bar ingredients, aka bruschetta. We’ve given you a classic version to start, but the options are endless.
DINING HALL BRUSCHETTA EASY
5 MINUTES SERVES WHAT
2 pieces sliced baguette, lightly toasted 4 tomato wedges from salad bar, roughly chopped 4 slices red onion from salad bar, roughly chopped 1 spoonful balsamic vinegar 2-3 spoonfuls olive oil Salt and pepper to taste
COMBINE tomatoes and onion in bowl.
WHISK balsamic vinegar and olive oil in separate bowl with fork. 3
TOSS together vegetables and dressing.
SPOON bruschetta mixture onto toasted bread.
YOU DON’T HAVE TO COOK FANCY OR COMPLICATED MASTERPIECES — JUST GOOD FOOD FROM FRESH INGREDIENTS. — JULIA CHILD
triangularity surface area = optimum flavor
DORITOS IN THE LAB THE SURPRISING SCIENCE BEHIND YOUR FAVORITE SNACKS
by Eilis Lombard
melting sensation = lip-smacking cheesiness satisfaction = (crunch)2 - orange residue 38 |
ILLUSTRATION BY LIV MARCUS
salt + fat = addictability
hen you look at a bag of Doritos, you might think of that salty nacho cheese powder, hopelessly addictive when dusted on crunchy, triangular chips. What you’re less likely to think about is a group of scientists in white coats, surrounded by an array of high-tech lab equipment and testing 20 different variations of cheese powder.
According to Michael Moss’ February 2013 New York Times Magazine article, “The Extraordinary Science of Junk Food,” Frito-Lay spends upwards of $30 million a year to run a research complex in Texas. Inside that complex, about 500 chemists, psychologists and technicians all work together to produce the perfect chip, exploring things like flavor, texture, mouth feel, aroma and crunch. The lab includes some highly specialized equipment that seems like the kind of fantastical contraptions you might expect from a Wonka-esque fantasyland and not necessarily from large, industrial-looking buildings just outside of Dallas. Case in point: a “$40,000 device that simulates a chewing mouth [to discover] the perfect break point.” The devotion of this amount of money and resources to developing new food products is certainly not unique to Frito-Lay. Behind most of the familiar products in our pantries and refrigerators is a world of complex scientific exploration dedicated to discovering and producing what customers want, often before they even know what that is. The basic product development process begins with an idea for a new product or line extension that is then tested in small focus groups to try gauging what the public reaction will be. “Sometimes it will just be a picture on a page to show people concepts,” explains Bill Loris, a former product developer for Kraft, who now works as a chemistry teacher at New Trier High School. “And sometimes it will be samples or prototypes of things to get some initial feedback. The product developers are usually very involved in this process, and sometimes even do it without the marketing team.” With this information, product development scientists begin working in a space that is part-kitchen, part-lab, where blenders and mixing bowls meet beakers. They’re a lot like any good chef, considering culinary elements like flavor palate, mouth feel and aroma, relying on their peers for tasting and feedback. “At this point, product developers will start to have informal discussions with their colleagues,” says Loris. “Like, ‘Here, try this, what do you think? Is this too salty, is this not salty enough, is it the right color, is this the right texture?’” However, as their creations are produced for large scale manufacture, they also bring specific biological and chemical knowledge to the table in thinking about shelf life and microbiological stability. Once they have a workable prototype, they bring it to a pilot lab to see how their recipe holds up with larger equipment. After scientists have gone through these initial testing stages and created some viable prototypes, marketing teams bring them to different cities across the country where blind
taste tests with hundreds of people are performed. Based on this feedback, the scientists return to the labs to make adjustments. “At this point, if you’re doing, say, salad dressing, you’re going to make a 5,000 pound batch of salad dressing, because the way that equipment works is very different than the lab bench and the pilot plant,” explains Loris. “You have to see how those sorts of processes are going to affect the flavor, color and texture of the product, as well as give the manufacturing engineers some kind of idea of cost structures.” Only after a product has been tested on this large of a scale can it move on to active marketing. This entire process can take years, and frequently involves as many as 50 different prototypes through its various stages. “With a company like Kraft, they’re going to want it to be first in the market and make about $500 million of profit for it to be even be worth marketing,” Loris says. With the stakes this high, an entire market of third party consulting for food engineering and optimization has arisen in order to more precisely understand customer preferences. In his article, Moss explains that these firms pay customers to “spend hours sitting in rooms where they feel, sip, smell, swirl and taste whatever is in question. Their opinions are dumped into a computer and sorted through a statistical method called conjoint analysis, which determines what features will be most attractive to customers.” This significantly streamlines the initial testing stages that product developers typically go through, allowing computers to automatically dial new products with different ingredient combinations and predict customer reactions with great precision. Howard Moskowitz, one of the most prominent food optimization consultants, saved Cadbury Schweppes millions of dollars when he discovered the bliss point (the maximum amount of enjoyment one experiences from a product based on the amount of a certain ingredient like sugar or fat) for the amount of Dr Pepper flavoring syrup was actually a “bliss range.” Customers could experience this from anywhere between 1.69 to 2 milliliters of syrup per bottle, which meant the company could reduce its syrup use by .31 milliliters without customers noticing a difference. However, the work that product developers, marketing teams and food optimization consultants do to determine what customers want is not always as simple as asking them. In a 2004 TED talk, Malcolm Gladwell explained that when focus groups were asked what they want in a coffee, the grand majority stated something like a “dark, rich, hearty roast.” In reality, blind tasting data shows that only about 25-27% of people actually desire this
Inside a Frito-Lay research complex in Texas, about 500 chemists, psychologists and technicians all work together to produce the perfect chip, exploring things like flavor, texture, mouth feel, aroma and crunch.
type of roast, with the majority of people preferring a “milkier, weaker coffee.” Asking customers the right questions and effectively interpreting their answers requires a certain psychological awareness. This awareness is often provided by psychologists in the company, but food scientists must also be attuned to it. Loris explains that when product developers sit in on focus groups about a product centered around convenience, there is a phrase that comes up that is known as “the kiss of death, and that is ‘Well, this would be great for camping.’ What that means is people are saying ‘This is something I can see being convenient, but it’s never something I would use at home.’” Understanding these kinds of cues and being able to adapt their scientific processes accordingly is key to success in a product developer’s line of work. As major food companies continue to churn out new ideas and people become more dependent on processed food, it is difficult to predict the direction in which the future of processed food science will go. While many food scientists are researching ways to create better tasting, healthier alternatives (like using specialized starches to simulate fat in fat-free cream cheese), others are working specifically to make junk food products like Cheetos (which melt in your mouth, convincing your brain that you’re consuming fewer calories than you actually are) more addictive. Either way, they’re a fascinating example of the power of people to use science to innovate and design deliciousness.
Superfood, Super You While the cult-like fascination with acai juice and wheatgrass has died down, people’s love of superfoods is still very much alive. With so many new ones popping up, it can be hard to tell which superfoods are
When it comes to seafood, no other fish can compete with salmon. It’s packed with heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids and nutrients like vitamin D and phosphorus. In fact, a 4-ounce serving provides 236 percent of your recommended daily value of vitamin B12. Enjoy it raw in sushi, or try it pan-fried or grilled.
worth your while and which you should skip at the supermarket. Here, we break down the six super foods that’ll boost your diet — and your health — from “good” to “super.”
Kale is widely recognized as the most nutrient-packed leafy green around. One cup of kale has only 33 calories, but packs 134 percent of your recommended daily vitamin C, 206 percent of vitamin A and 684 percent of vitamin K. Enjoy it in pasta, or simply sautéed with garlic.
The Chinese have been drinking green tea for thousands of years, and for good reason: the tea has been known to do everything from lower blood pressure to boost metabolism. This beverage is also chock-full of antioxidants that keep cells healthy and might even help destroy cancerous ones, according to some research. Drink hot with lemon or chilled with ice.
As if we needed another reason to crack open a bottle, antioxidants in red wine can improve heart health by preventing damage to blood vessels and lowering cholesterol. But since the negative effects of drinking too much alcohol outweigh the health benefits, stick to just one glass per day.
Quinoa contains iron, which fights anemia by promoting red blood cell health, as well as lots of vitamin B2, which improves energy within brain and muscle cells. It also supplies some lesser-known nutrients: three-fourths of a cup provides nearly 20 percent of your recommended daily value of zinc and folate. Try it stuffed in vegetables (like bell peppers), or in stir fry.
ILLUSTRATIONS BY KYLE HANCHER
Six superfoods you should be eating By Emily Wickwire
While many might associate chia with those “pet” plants you grew as a child, the seeds are actually a significant source of essential nutrients. A 1-ounce serving delivers 11 grams of fiber, as well as large amounts of manganese and calcium — both of which contribute to healthy bones and teeth. Add them to a smoothie or a bowl of oatmeal.
CERSEI: POUR THE LADY SANSA SOME WINE. SANSA: I’M NOT THIRST Y. CERSEI: SO? I DIDN’T OFFER YOU WATER. — GAME OF THRONES
FOODIES AROUND CAMPUS
Current and former students take their culinary musings and creations online. By Katherine Dempsey
YEAR Senior AGE 22 FROM Pittsburgh, PA MAJOR Biology BLOG Tiancakes tiancakes.blogspot.com “I really just enjoy being in the kitchen. Blogging reminds me to try things for the journey, just for my own enjoyment, which is something I think I’ve forgotten a lot in college. Blogging is a positive cycle for me; it keeps me motivated because if I haven’t posted in a while that means I haven’t cooked in a while, and it inspires me to make things well so that I can write about them.”
YEAR Senior AGE 22 FROM Holland, MI MAJOR Psychology BLOG Girl & Granola
YEAR Junior AGE 21 FROM New Richmond, WI MAJOR Journalism & History BLOG Nibbles & Noshing
“What really draws me to specific blogs that I keep coming back to over and over is the ability to actually inspire me to make a recipe and share it with other people, rather than looking at a picture and thinking ‘I could never actually make that.’ It’s awesome to make that kind of food but I don’t think that’s what the blogging platform is necessarily for. It should be a two-way communication, where your reader can relate to you.”
PHOTOS COURTESY OF BLOGGERS
“I spent a lot of time looking at food blogs and coming up with ideas of my own, but I put off starting my own blog for so long. I was just like, ‘Oh, I’ll do that someday, like when I’m cooking and living on my own.’ But if you’re really interested and gung ho about doing something, then just do it — because if you have the inspiration and the motivation, why wait? Why not take take advantage of that and go for it?”
YEAR Sophomore AGE 20 FROM Carmel, IN MAJOR Psychology BLOG Pass the Cocoa
YEAR Graduated 2013 AGE 21 FROM Alexandria, VA MAJOR Flute Performance BLOG The Bacon Princess
“When my friend and I first started Pass the Cocoa, we had basically no audience other than our parents. But over these past two years we’ve really seen an increase in traffic and also recognition from some selective food galleries that judge based off of photography. Hershey’s Kitchens even offered to feature one of my recipes on their website. It’s really incredible to realize there are people reading our blog and actually making our recipes.” INTERVIEWS HAVE BEEN EDITED AND CONDENSED.
“I think that being funny is the fastest way to connect to an audience, whether in person or over the Internet. I want my blog to make people laugh so that they’re engaged immediately by my writing and are like, ‘This girl’s funny, I’m gonna make her food.’ My blog says: I’m young, I just graduated from college, I’m poor, and I’m trying to come up with really awesome food on a $30 Trader Joe’s weekly budget.” NU.SPOONUNIVERSITY.COM |41
WITH SALTED CARAMEL BUTTERCREAM
PHOTO BY KENDRA VALKEMA
*Want the recipe? Scan away.
NU Ski Trip 2014 December 13th – 19th
Enjoy 5 Days Out West in Colorado Thought last year was fun? Wait and see what’s in store for NU Ski Trip 2014! Follow us on Twitter (@NU_SkiTrip) and like us on Facebook for updates!
Winter is Coming…