David Hammond, a corporate communications consultant and food journalist living in Oak Park, Illinois, is a founder and moderator of LTHForum.com, the 8,500 member Chicago-based culinary chat site. David is a regular contributor of restaurant reviews and food-related articles for Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, TimeOut Chicago, Local Beet, and Chicago Reader, which published his seven-part guide to regional Mexican food in the city. He has also contributed food writing to blogs such as the Local Beet and Grubstreet Chicago. With his friend Michael Gebert (creator of Sky Full of Bacon video podcasts), he hosted a cable documentary on Hispanic chow at Chicago's Maxwell Street Market,and has just completed working on a video about Taste of Melrose Park. A returning guest on WLS and WGN AM radio, David produces the "Soundbites" series on the James Beard-nominated Eight Forty-Eight (Chicago Public Radio, WBEZ, 91.5FM); these radio pieces examine how Chicago chefs use sound in their kitchens; listen here: http://tiny.cc/QpCTA. David was featured on "Good Morning, America," "Chicago, Tonight," and Nippon TV when he developed recipes for preparing seasonal cicadas, which invaded Chicagoland during the spring of 2007. More information, including writing samples and bug-cooking videos, can be found at www.dchammond.com.
Carnivore opened late last summer, and we've been there a few times to pick up meat and fish. The boys at Carnivore now also offer lunch. Stopping in for a sandwich is a good way to sample their hand-crafted wurst.
There has long been a dispute over whether the Cuban sandwich was actually created in Cuba. Three American cities are contending for the honor of being the sandwich's point of origin: Ybor City in Tampa, Key West and Miami, all home to many Cuban expatriates, all claiming that the sandwich was invented in their city. My tendency is to believe the Cuban Sandwich was invented in the U.S. The Cubano is heavily loaded, and we Yanks tend to over-do things.
For ancient peoples, it was all about fertility. If there wasn't enough water, there would be no crops, and whole civilizations would either die in place or move somewhere else. Some of the ancient rock carvings are focused upon honoring the forces that helped food grow and life continue.
Hand-made tortillas taste like fresh corn, and they're soft and absorbent, making them very good for swabbing up sauce and beans and other typical components of a Mexican meal. When they're fresh, they're pliable in a way that bagged tortillas cannot be, and they fold easily to hold their contents while retaining moisture so essential to a good sandwich (dryness being the great enemy of all sandwiches).