Hot Time in the Old Town

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow. On Thursday, eat the meals that will be posted on Wednesday.  Eat sensibly the other days of the week.  That’s it.  Simple way to lose weight and be healthier.                                                                      Welcome to Fashion-Creative who is now Following.

“Chicago Fire.”  Those words could conjure a restaurant; a TV series; a soccer/futbol team; a popular children’s ditty; or an event from 1871. I never went to that restaurant, I don’t watch the TV show, and I don’t follow soccer.  But I did grow up singing that song and being told that a cow kicking over a lantern [due to the carelessness of the owner] was the cause of the Great Chicago Fire of October 8, 1871.  Chicago was a fast-growing city, buildings quickly thrown up with wood for framing and wooden sidewalks. Population density was high in the city center and some famous new buildings, like the storied Palmer House Hotel, had just opened. At 9 pm, a fire began in the southwest corner of the town. Fanned by a SW wind, the flames eagerly fed on the dry structures ahead of it and spread rapidly. By the time it was out, 31% of the population was homeless, and the city center was destroyed. The fire had consequences and beneficial outcomes: new building codes and architects flocking to the city to begin the ‘Great Rebuilding.’  This lead to the “Chicago School” of architecture, some of which is seen today during the delightfully interesting ‘architectural river cruise‘.

The foods today recognize post-fire Chicago.  Immigrants have flocked to the city, not always receiving a warm welcome.  But they helped the city to grow and flourish and they added their foods to the culture.  There are now more Mexicans in Chicago than in the city of Veracruz! So, the breakfast features Mexican Pickled Vegetables.  The dinner spotlights the famous Chicago Hot Dog, born of the stock yards and the German workers there.

Mexicali Bake:  271 calories  7 g fat  3.8 g fiber  13 g protein  38.7 g carbs  234 mg Calcium  PB GF  Remarkable how the bright pickle flavor and the creamy cheese compliment each other. Mexicali Bake w: grapes                                                                                                                                                                                    1 two-oz egg                                                                                                                                                                      2 Tbsp Mexican Pickles, chopped    [see Spicy II, 12 September, 2018 for recipe]                                                    2 Tbsp Cheddar cheese, grated                                                                                                                         pinch cumin + big pinch oregano [Mexican oregano if you have it]                                                                                     grapes                                                                                                                                                                                     nearly black coffee or tea or lemon in hot water                                                                                                                                        6 oz green or fruit smoothie or natural apple cider

Spritz a ramekin with oil or non-stick spray and set the toaster oven at 350° F.  Put the pickles in the ramekin and cook in microwave for 30 seconds. Sprinkle the cheese over the pickles. Whisk the egg and seasonings together, and pour into the ramekin. Bake for 12-15 minutes. Meanwhile, brew the hot beverage, shake your smoothie, and plate the fruit. What a bright and delicious day this will be.

Chicago Hot Dog:  272 calories  16.4 g fat   2 g fiber  11 g protein  14 g carbs  36 mg Calcium PB GF  This is the real deal: every single flavor found in a Chicago hot dog, without the bun. Delicious and filling, wherever you live.Chicago Hot dog

2 all-beef hot dogs [Hebrew National reduced-fat]                                                                                                                                     3 oz fresh tomato, sliced in 8 wedges                                                                                                                  2 oz dill pickle spears, you should have 2-5 pieces of pickle                                                                   celery salt                                                                                                                                                                                2 Tbsp chopped onions, raw                                                                                                                                2 tsp relish [neon green relish is traditional]                                                                                                          2 ‘sport peppers‘ –OR- 3 pepperoncini, sliced in two                                                                                   ¼ tsp poppy seed                                                                                                                                            yellow mustard

Cook the hot dogs any way you want. In a wide, shallow bowl place the hot dogs in the center.  Place pickle slices along side and between the hot dogs. Now arrange the tomatoes around the edge. Sprinkle it all with celery salt, especially the tomatoes. Dollop with relish and distribute the onions all over. Arrange the peppers on top and drizzle with mustard. Add the poppy seed. Wear your favorite Chicago team jersey and tuck in to the dinner.

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