Friends forging a course together through the unexpected

Empanadas for St. Patrick’s Day! March 19, 2014

Filed under: Kelly — Uncharted @ 12:15 am
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Even though it was St. Patrick’s Day weekend, Dave and I strayed from the traditional corn beef and cabbage Saturday night and decided to try a new place called EmpanadUS in LaGrange.  I have seen it a few times on my way to my hair salon, but we have never stopped in and tried it until now.  We received a very warm welcome when we came into the shop.  Perhaps they were so friendly because we were the only ones there.  Too be fair though it was pretty late on Saturday night.  At first I was a bit worried- I always feel better about a restaurant if it’s well populated.  Let me curb your fears right now and tell you that as soon as I finished my meal, I was thinking about when we could come back next.  I don’t care if we are the only ones there every time!  We took a look at the menu which described all the ingredients in each empanada. Once we made our decision on what to order, the gentleman at the counter told us he had those empanadas made and in the warmer, but if we wanted them freshly made they could do that for us.  We decided to go with the fresh ones, and were happy we did because they were seriously delicious and took under 10 minutes to make.

We tried six different empanadas:
BBQ Pork, Bacon & Egg, Nutella & Banana, Italian Sausage, Beef, and Caprese

I’d say my favorite was the Italian Sausage, but the Bacon & Egg surprised me- I’m not usually that much of a breakfasty person but I loved that one.  What’s nice is most of the empanadas have the type of filling stamped in the pastry so you won’t be surprised when you bite into it. The Caprese and Nutella one did not, but they were a different shape and the waiter pointed out which ones were which for us.  Here you can see the stamps on these:photoI would definitely recommend this place to anyone wanting to try something new.  We also saw on their menu that they do catering!  I was seriously sitting there wracking my brain for party ideas just so I can have them again.  If you live in the area, or heck if you live far away you have to come try this place!  I looked on their website and learned they have a couple locations, the one in LaGrange that we visited and one in Riverside.  Here is their website if you are interested in more information….and I promise they haven’t compensated me in any way to say all this.  I just loved their food!  Here’s to trying new things!


Eat Green Live Well November 10, 2010

Filed under: Karla — Uncharted @ 9:57 pm
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I adored the father in My Big Fat Greek Wedding, Gus Portokalos, who would trace any English word to its Grecian origin, whether it be “orange” or “apple”. Following Gus’s example, I’ve recently learned a new Greek word, prasino, meaning “green”.

Being a huge fan of reducing my carbon footprint, shopping locally, and recycling, to name a few things, I love it when I find other companies or organizations that are dedicated to sustainability.

A new family-owned restaurant recently opened up in a western suburb of Chicago called prasino.  The owners of prasino have fully incorporated the green principle: from the food that is prepared, to the cleaning products used, to the overall design of the restaurant.

Starting with the kitchen – it was planned to reduce energy and water use, include recycling and use eco-friendly cleaning products.

The food on your plate – prasino’s uses seasonal and organic food from Heritage Prairie Farm, a 13 acre family farm located 40 miles west of downtown Chicago.

The restaurant itself – light fixtures are crafted from recycled wine bottles and cardboard boxes, tabletops incorporate wood rescued from the demolition of Sportsman’s Park Race Track, and floors are reclaimed oak planks salvaged from a barn.

And the food is AMAZING! My favorites include the butternut squash ravioli and the turkey blue burger. Try either with Samuel Smith’s raspberry organic ale.

I find myself using a multitude of reasons to go there with my fellow uncharted authors and I’ve even dragged my parents.  I encourage you to check it out, drag your own friends and family members to see how being green can support your local economy, is chic, and most importantly, tasty.


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