Put Together the Perfect Summertime Meal

Picnic

To my shame, I’ve been on a bit of a hiatus ¬†since September. Life events have kept me busy, including getting a brand new puppy (which means you can look forward to some homemade dog treat recipes). By way of apology, I’ve compiled a list of recipes from around the web to help you put together an awesome summertime meal, from start to finish.

Drinks

Raspberry and Serrano Sangria

Watermelon and Strawberry Lemonade

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BIG and littles Restaurant: Fast Food Gourmet

BIG and little’s restaurant, located in River North, has recently become a lunchtime favorite of mine and my co-worker. This small local joint, specializing in seafood, was established by two friends (hence the big and littles), one of which, Tony, was a contestant of Hell’s Kitchen. This joint feels local, with fast-food type service, but much better quality food. In 2010, they won the Chicago Tribune’s Eater of the Year Award, and since have relocated to a bigger joint, with the same communal and personal feel to the restaurant.

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My first experience here was on the first day of a new internship, when my boss took us here for lunch. We ended up ordering one of almost everything (way more than we could eat!), which included tilapia tacos, shrimp pokeys, some kind of oyster sandwich special (I can’t remember the name; the special switch weekly), on top of truffle and sweet potato fries. The truffle fries were a real highlight: fries topped with truffle salt made for a sweet treat that I could eat all day long.

I came here once again with my co-worker, and due to budget constraints, was able to only get the shrimp tacos and my beloved truffle fries. Note: BIG and little’s is not super cheap, with the average entree being at eight dollars a pop, but you get what you pay for: quality food.¬†The service was as good as ever, and I once again had a wonderful eating experience.

BIG and littles specializes in seafood, but they also feature more traditional options such as hot dogs, and a variety of burgers. The specials change all the time, so it is worth it to keep checking this restaurant out over and over. BIG and littles is accessible off the brown line Chicago stop, on Orleans street.

-Lisa