Yesterday was my 45th birthday but the celebrating took place pretty much all weekend. Aren't I the lucky duck? Not surprisingly, food was a big part of the celebrating. Here are some highlights:
A German-style breakfast at my friend Heather's new home, with salami, cheese, rye bread, really good butter, tea and strawberries. It was simple and lovely. (And long overdue.)
Prairie Berry ice cream with Sam and Ben up at the 75 year-old Homer's in Wilmette. (Totally worth the drive and we'll back soon for their famous summer Peach.)
An easy-going, happily chatty dinner with girlfriends Sarah, Suzie and Rachel at my new west-side favorite and feel-good food endeavor, Inspiration Kitchen. I wish we could gather like that more often.
The yellow cake with chocolate frosting that Ben and Ted made for me. It's out of the box and out of the can and exactly what I crave and treasure when it comes to my birthday cake.
Going on an Urban Forage with Sam as my date and my old friend Nance Klehm as our amazing leader. Sam tried everything but it was wood sorrel and the fennel fronds he liked best. I was smitten with the broccoli flowers and the violet leave pouch that Sam filled with homemade yogurt cheese for me. (And now Sam wants to plant some Valerian in the Parkway!)
Slurping miso ramen with the boys, Ted, Grandma Franny & Grandpa Bob at Takashi during their Sunday Noodles Lunch. Hand-pulled noodles made with imported Japanese flour and a deep, rich broth. You pretty much know how I was feeling right at that moment.
Rounding out the celebration with Ted at a new Italian bar (right in our very own 'hood) called Ombra. Its specialty is cicchetti: Italian small plates, which were perfect after our giant bowls of ramen earlier. The decor is total Spaghetti Western, the booths are chunky and funky, it was on the loud side, but sitting there with Ted (and a generous glass of Prosecco) it was just right.