Monday, August 15, 2011

Adventures in "The Square" -- a.k.a. My Week of Kale

My week of kale began yesterday, when I made the long and arduous journey to Logan Square to peruse the weekly farmer's market and brunch (verb form) at the widely heralded Lula Café. The "arduous" journey, as it turned out, consisted only of a 30 minute bus ride. Which is great news, because Logan Square is awesome! Not only am I practically a celebrity there, but all the chatter is true -- there are some very hip, up-and-coming spots in this Chicago neighborhood. The farmer's market itself was fun, comparable to my homebase, Green City, with some extra delights like a vendor who sold baby-sized ice cream cones (seeing a two-year-old toddling around with one of those things was pretty much more than I could handle).  

Raspberry ale-dipped belmonte with a sliced pair. Yum!
Our first order of business was to put our names on Lula Café's ridiculously long wait list. Then we meandered amongst the stalls of the market. After copping some kale, fancy tomatoes, and a red onion, I followed the lead of my very talented foodie friend Jamie ( to purchase some delectable raspberry ale-dipped belmonte cheese (pictured).  We then wandered into a bakery aptly named La Boulangerie to order coffee, only to be prompty rejected. La Boulangerie does not, apparently, sell coffee. Go figure. It works well enough for the neighboring shop, New Wave Coffee,  who does. Coincidence? I like to think not. New Wave sells Metropolis coffee, rival of Intelligentsia, which Jamie claims to like better. But my pallette for coffee is not developed enough to know any better, so I was content just to be sipping a warm, milky caffinated beverage as we waited for a table to open at Lula.

We were joined by the third (always fashionably late) member of our party (my BFF Anj!) before we were seated at long last, reviewed the menu, and ordered: bacon-spinach-eggplant strada for me, a sandwich of short rib hash for Jamie (we went halfsies on our meals), a veggie breakfast burrito for Anj, and a brioche french toast with blueberry and butterscotch for the table (click to see the meal in all its edible glory). That's right. We don't mess around when it comes to brunch.

When our food came, what followed was a solid 20 minutes of silence punctuated by biting, chewing, savoring, and exclamations of, "this is so freakin' delicious!"

And indeed, freaking delicious it was.

While this meal is certainly one that has no regular place on a blog about healthy eating, it is the type of occasional dining experience fit for a king. Luckily, the two bunches of kale I picked up from the market should last me all week, so I'll be balancing my diet accordingly with healthy greens. Stay tuned to find out what I do with this nutritionally dense leaf!


  1. Hahah i loved this post! I took one of your paragraphs and added it to my gchat status! I have such talented friends!!

  2. Somehow I've managed to keep myself from eating the cheese in one setting. Self-discipline!

    My favorite kale prep is bacon and kale sauteed or kale in soup. :) Enjoy!

  3. Hm. I may have to give bacon kale a whirl.