It’s hard not to love this time of year. Holidays, decorations, an excuse to watch Elf and Love Actually without judgement…
It’s also an excellent month for food! You already have the dates circled for family traditions on your calendar. Now you can break out the marker once more and plan ahead for some more exciting National Food Days!
National Brownie Day
Did you know…
…that the brownie was actually invented in Chicago? At the behest of Bertha Palmer, whose husband owned the Palmer House, a “ladies dessert” was created to be served at the 1893 World Columbian Exposition held in Chicago from the Women’s Pavilion. The first printed use of the word “brownie” to describe it wouldn’t happen until 1896 Boston Cooking-School Cook Book by Fannie Farmer
On this day, the modern Palmer House Hilton is handing out free brownies to commemorate the birth of quite possibly my favorite sweet and the National Holiday. If you’re in Chicago, swing by 17 E. Monroe St. after 11:30 AM CT to get your complimentary brownie.
National Pastry Day
In case brownies aren’t your style, you get to pick up your favorite baked dessert the next day! Otherwise, you have an excuse to stop by the bakery two days in a row…Not the worst thing.
As mentioned in my Food Truck Challenge, I personally recommend the Chicago Cupcake truck. Seriously unlike any kind of cupcake I’ve tried before . They also have store fronts in Wicker Park, if you’re not willing to hunt down the truck for adventure.
National “Have a Bagel” Day
Bagels may sound like an everyday thing to most, but this seems like the perfect occasion to get creative and get something awesome. Every now and then, I get a craving for New York style bagels and luckily there’s an NYC Bagel Deli in Chicago with NY style pizza slices as well.
But if you want to be adventurous, I recommend Brobagel in the Wicker Park/Bucktown area, just next door to Piece Pizza and Brewery. Amazing bagel sandwiches and people with matching personalities to make them so.
National Biscuits and Gravy Day
Some folks tell me that they or their moms make the best biscuits and gravy…If you are one of these people, please invite me over to try them because I LOVE BISCUITS AND GRAVY.
Whenever I go out for breakfast, my eyes usually search for biscuits and gravy right off the bat because my stomach has complete control of them. I have to say that in recent memory, the best biscuits and gravy I’ve had in Chicago is from a place with the perfect name…Brunch. They also have a perfect selection of mimosas to pair nicely.
National Chocolate Covered Anything Day
Nothing will be running through my head more than Gene Wilder serenading a tour of the Wonka Factory on that day…
This also happens anytime I walk into the Confectionery in downtown Long Grove. There’s a little old woman in a corner glass screen room, doing nothing but dipping strawberries in chocolate. From what I’m told, she has dipped over 2 billion strawberries in her time there…and they make an amazing gift as well.
National Sangria Day
The bottom 3rd of the month is all about drinks.
12/24 (Christmas Eve) is National Egg Nog day. 12/31 (New Year’s Eve) is National Champagne Day. Those are pretty easy to remember and adhere to. However, why not kick the final stretch of the year off with a drink just as, if not more delicious than both.
I actually have out-of-town company coming in for the holidays, so I plan on treating them the way I normally do for most of my guests…with great food and booze.