Category: Barrington Eats

168. Barrington EATS: Sub-Rosa – A Secret Worth Sharing

 Are you looking for something different to do for your next night out? Perhaps to view modern art while eating waffle sandwiches at the Gap, or fried eggplant and live music alongside iPads at the Apple store? That would be different all right! And it’s possibly what you will be doing if you join Deer Park Town Center’s new underground “Sub-Rosa” dining club and attend their first top secret event on Friday, June 22, a 8 p.m.  I can’t say for sure where on Deer Park’s premises this provocative dining event will take place because they’re calling it a delicious secret and a confidential culinary adventure. Sign me up!

Tickets are currently on sale for this veiled event, but the location and other details remain under wraps. All ticketholders will be sent an e-mail 24 hours prior to the event with clues for how to find the location (somewhere within Deer Park Town Center, but not at a restaurant or a location that has anything to do with food).  Once they arrive, guests will enjoy dinner, wine, entertainment and culture.
Sub-Rosa is a term that originated in Ancient Greece and means “Under the Rose.” It was understood that, when a rose was hung over the table during a closed-door meeting, whatever was discussed did not leave that room. Today, Sub-Rosa implies anything done in secret.  This type of dining event has become popular in New York and London, and thanks to our versatile Deer Park Town Center, now it’s an option in the Barrington area.
Marketing Director at Deer Park Town Center, Regina Verdico, decided to plan a Sub-Rosa event in our town after attending one herself. “The entire evening was such an adventure.  From finding the exact location of the event to the surprise element of the food being served, it was an experience that I will remember forever.”
Part of the fun comes from speculating what people will be eating off of and next to at this fun and funky event. I also am curious as to what they will eat, as the Sub-Rosa environment is one in which chefs are typically given free reign to showcase their styles and provide eclectic fare within their specialties.…

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162. Barrington EATS: Pick & Prep the Perfect Mango

 It’s Monday morning and I have mangoes on the mind. How many ingredients can you think of that go as well with fish as they do in a smoothie, yet can also brighten up a pizza? Mango is a surprising fruit, and can do all three.

Mangoes are ripe and ready this time of year, and this means they’re everywhere, they’re priced right and they taste great.  But how do you know how to choose the perfect mango to put in your grocery basket?  Here are a few pointers to help you pick and pit the perfect mango……

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159. Barrington EATS: Kookin’ Up Memorial Day Burgers

 When I think about Memorial Day food, like most everyone else, I think burgers. There’s a reason they are one the most eaten meals in America. The simple combination base of beef and buns is reliably good! Like many good meals, a burger is one I refer to as a palette. Like an artists palette, it’s a meal that can be decorated with so many options and ways – whatever suits your fancy.
My favorite burgers to prepare at home include avocado and salsa, mushrooms and Swiss and fried onions with chipotle mayo.  When it comes to finding great burgers out and about in Barrington, I have long had a favorite place in Kooker’s on route 14 just West of 59.  This classic burger joint has everything you want from your hometown burger place and more.

It starts with friendly service when you walk in the door…
Every one of the many times I’ve been in Kooker’s, I’ve been welcomed by owner Bill Seger with a warm greeting that includes a reference to either the bacon or the baseball he knows my 9-year old boy loves, just from getting to know him over the counter. Following the friendly chatter are accommodations of special orders, and tremendously quick service.

With burger boutiques being all the rage these days, I decided to challenge Bill on what they might have that Kooker’s doesn’t……

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155. Barrington EATS: The Coolest Thing in the Kitchen

 I look forward to this time of year for many reasons… the Fox River is open for boating, the days until the Barrington pool opens can be counted on our fingers, graduation parties, gardening and baseball punctuate the weekends, and at the grocery stores, the prices of cucumbers begin their steady descent to from over $1 per cucumber to their 3-cucumbers-for-a-dollar lows (expect late in the summer).

Cucumbers are a solid staple in my household, an item that I refer to as a Smart ingredient. It’s Smart because they always get eaten (don’t rot in the crisper!), and can round out SO many meals for my family. Both my kids and I will eat cucumber slices just as a snack. Think crunchy, like chips! They are a main ingredient in two of my favorite salads, (recipes below) 4 other salads in my salads cookbook, they add a great texture and liveliness to many of my kids favorite sandwiches, such as turkey and bacon, or ham and lettuce.…

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150. Barrington EATS: Treat Your Mom’s Taste Buds

 If you want to treat your mom to a special Mother’s Day brunch or dinner in Barrington this weekend, we’ve collected the details about some delicious dining options.  They include a wide range of international samplings you can try at local restaurants as well as two special recipes you can prepare for mom at home, giving her a  well  deserved break from, you know the place …..

L’Eiffel Bistrot & Creperie
L’Eiffel will offer several types of French crepes,  benedicts and salads for brunch, and for dinner items such as Chateaubriand and Boeuf Bourguignon. Brunch from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., dinner from 3-9 p.m. 847-428-4783.
PL8 Simply Asian
pl8 is celebrating Mother’s Day as they do in China and Japan with both their fare and some special traditions. Moms will receive a traditional carnation, and a card that includes a $10 gift certificate on their next visit to PL8. There will be Mother’s Day specials along with their regular menu which includes sushi, Sichuan and traditional Chinese and Thai items such as pot stickers, Pad Thai and Sweet and Sour. 3 – 9 p.m.
 847-382-1988.
Pinstripes
Pinstripes at the Arboretum of South Barrington will be rocking a Canadain-invented chocolate fountain in addition to three types of waffles and an omelet station. 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. 847-844-9300.
Millrose Restaurant
Mother’s Day at Millrose includes a Brunch with Italian flair including Rosemary-Garlic Roasted Pork Loin with Marsala Sauce and Asparagus Salad with Tomatoes and fresh Mozzarella, and Southwest dinner selections including chicken quesadillas, fried calamari with chili cilantro sauce and Chicken Milanesa.
Onion Pub
Enjoy fantastic Seafood selections like Chilled Alaskan Crab Legs, Beer Steamed Mussels, Shrimp Cocktail and Hardwood Smoked Salmon. 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. 847-381-7308.
Barrington Country Bistro
The Bistro’s Mother’s Day french fare will include Shrimp Beurre Blanc and beef Tenderloin Steak Béarnaise. Lunch 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m., Dinner 4 – 7 p.m. 847-842-1300.
If you are cooking at home this Mother’s Day, here are two of my popular breakfast recipes from other ends of the globe. Round either out with an array of fresh berries or other fruit and have your own International-inspired event at home. Whatever you do, I hope you and the Mom in your life enjoy!……

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148. Barrington EATS: Spice it Up on the Patio at pl8

 If you love spicy food, prepare to be satisfied.  To feel the heat, mark your calendars for a special spicy food dinner coming up at pl8 Simply Asian.  The one-year-old Barrington restaurant is the hottest spot in town to get your sushi, Thai or traditional Chinese food fix at a cool urban oasis here in the heart of suburbia.
I love that pl8 fulfills the experienced sushi palates in my family while providing traditional dishes like Pad Thai and Crispy Sesame Chicken that the non-Sushi eating members of my family love.  But watch out!  One look at the following photos and your appetite might get sassy……

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141. Barrington EATS: Cinco de Mayo a La Hacienda

 Cinco de Mayo is just days away and, if you haven’t made plans to celebrate, we have some ideas for you. The Mexican holiday recognizes the Battle of Puebla in 1862, when the Mexican Army had an unlikely victory over French forces. I think most Americans love to share in the holiday simply to have a day to celebrate our love of Mexican food and drinks and you’ll find your fiesta at several Barrington area hotspots this week, starting with La Hacienda at Deer Park Town Center.

La Hacienda will be buzzing this Cinco de Mayo thanks to a festive holiday menu and live entertainment……

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138. Barrington EATS: Chef Kelly Donlea’s Olive Tap Tip

 I’ve long enjoyed going to Pasquesi Home and Gardens in Barrington for unique houseware items, when I need to buy a gift and, of course, for my flowers and gardening supplies. Now I enjoy it for one more reason – it helps me make great food by carrying products by the Olive Tap.

The Olive Tap Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar emporium, located in Long Grove, has gotten me hooked on using their delicious oils and vinegars to make the salads from my 30 Spectacular Salads cookbook and many other dishes. I work with the Olive Tap often, creating great pairings with their oils and vinegars and my foods and demoing them at various events. The only problem is, when I run out, I don’t always have time for a trip to Long Grove……

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134. Barrington EATS with Executive Chef Ted Stay

 Two of downtown Barrington’s hottest restaurants, McGonigal’s Pub and the Park Avenue Restaurant and Wine Bar, share a secret ingredient.  He’s the man behind the menus, Executive Chef Ted Stay, and you’ll find him working overtime, crafting culinary treasures in the kitchen that create raving fans on both restaurant floors.
This dedicated and innovative chef manages to run the kitchen for the two vastly different, but equally popular downtown Barrington fixtures simultaneously. Visit the shared kitchen and you might, like we did, see McGonigals serving up their Soft Pretzels and Beer Cheese or, pub favorite, Fish and Chips……

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125. Barrington EATS: Easter Brunch & Lovely Leftovers

 In my opinion, the two best things about any holiday are family time and food.  And Easter is no exception. Traditions run rampant on Easter tables with lamb cakes and butter, family-favorite potato dishes, and more likely than not, hard boiled eggs and Easter ham.

Following are many, many ways to eat this Easter, which include making your own ham, ordering a pre-sliced honey baked ham, enjoying brunch in many unexpected places in Barrington and then using your leftovers to make breakfasts, lunches and dinners. Eat up Barrington!…

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119. Barrington EATS: Have a Spring Fling with Asparagus

 If you are one of the many Barrington residents who happened to see my Barrington Garden Faire or Barrington Farmers’ Market cooking demos last Spring, perhaps you remember me for my 30 Spectacular Salads cookbook. But more likely it’s for the Black Bean Asparagus Salad.

While at both venues I demonstrated and sampled salads that included Orzo Salad, Chick Pea Mango Salad, Carrot Basil and Feta Salad, Beet and Goat Cheese Salad, Crunchy Green Bean Salad and others that people told me were their absolute favorites, but the salad that people always came back to tell me they made… over and over and over again… was the Black Bean Asparagus. No surprise as it is delicious, looks pretty, is virtually fat-free and goes with just about anything!…

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117. Prepare a St. Pat’s Day Feast Like Chef Kelly Donlea

 You’re never going to believe this! Barrington mom, local chef and cookbook author, Kelly Donlea, is sharing her top secret family recipe for Glazed Corned Beef this St. Paddy’s day. If you’re planning an Irish feast at home this weekend, you should try this Barrington-version of a traditional corned beef brisket. This recipe is so special, it has been passed down for generations. Kelly says the secret is in the glaze and she’s revealing the key ingredients with our very first “Barrington Eats” food feature right here at 365Barrington.com.

Here’s Kelly’s scoop on her family’s corned beef classic:
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“My husband’s Grandmother, Elizabeth Donlea, was the wife of Frank Donlea who grew up on Donlea Road in Barrington Hills. “Liz” lived, bowled and socialized in Barrington for the better part of her 93 years. She passed away in 2003, but left several great legacies to my family, the two most notable being my daughters’ beautiful red hair, and her recipe for Glazed Corned Beef.…

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