Cover Image: Made in Chicago

Made in Chicago

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Member Reviews

In "Made in Chicago," Monica Eng and David Hammond invite readers on a delectable journey through the vibrant and diverse food scene of the Windy City. While deep-dish pizza and Italian beef sandwiches may dominate the culinary conversation, Eng and Hammond unveil a treasure trove of lesser-known yet equally iconic dishes that capture the essence of Chicago's culinary identity.

Drawing upon their extensive experience exploring Chicago's neighborhoods, the authors curate a mouthwatering selection of thirty must-try eats, each accompanied by captivating stories that celebrate the people and places behind these culinary delights. From humble beginnings in the kitchens of immigrant families to the bustling storefronts of neighborhood eateries, each dish is steeped in history and tradition, reflecting the rich tapestry of cultures that define Chicago.

What sets "Made in Chicago" apart is its celebration of the unsung heroes of the city's food scene— the neighborhood entrepreneurs, mom-and-pop establishments, and culinary visionaries who have shaped Chicago's gastronomic landscape. Whether it's the tangy sweetness of Mild Sauce, the ingenious fusion of Puerto Rican and Caribbean flavors in the Jibarito, or the nostalgic charm of Taffy Grapes, Eng and Hammond shine a spotlight on the diverse array of culinary creations that make Chicago a culinary melting pot.

Throughout the book, Eng and Hammond's passion for Chicago's food culture shines through, as they provide readers with all the essential information needed to embark on their own culinary adventures, from where to find these beloved dishes to selected recipes for those eager to recreate the magic at home. The inclusion of vibrant full-color photos adds visual allure, tantalizing readers' taste buds and transporting them to the bustling streets and cozy eateries of Chicago.

"Made in Chicago" is more than just a culinary guidebook; it's a love letter to the city's rich culinary heritage and the communities that have nurtured it. Whether you're a seasoned Chicagoan or a curious visitor, this book is an indispensable companion for exploring the heart and soul of one of America's greatest food cities. Engaging, informative, and downright delicious, "Made in Chicago" is a must-read for anyone with an appetite for adventure and a love of good food.

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I did not download the book fast enough and was not able to read it to be able to give my review.

I received a complimentary copy of the book from the University of Illinois Press through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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This is a really fun book. I have eaten my way through Chicago and the neighborhoods, there were a few new to me dishes and of course some favorites that were missed. Some of the dishes are very well known across the country, others are unique only to Chicago. The authors give the history of the dishes, where to find them and some have recipes so you can make them home. The photographs are mouth watering. Enjoy

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Really 3.5. I enjoyed reading about the different foods, but don’t see much appeal if you’ve never lived in Chicago. I also think they could’ve done a much better job with the photography in this book. Some of the photos don’t show off the foods well & some foods don’t even have pictures. Also - and I never say this about books - it felt like the font was unusually small. It definitely effected my reading pace.

I received a free ARC of this book from NetGalley.

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What a fun part of U.S. and rich history to read through and having a try at making all these recipes from popular, iconic restaurants in Chicago. I’d recommend this to anyone, for lovely recipes and historic value. I’ve already planned for adding to my cookbook collection and this will make a great gift as well.

I would like to thank University of Illinois Press for providing me with an advance readers copy via access to the galley for free through the NetGalley program.

<b>The Story</b>
I’m still making my way through all the dishes, but so far, so good! The famous pizzas, burgers, add-ons, to dessert.

This book has it all, including the historical context, even such debated creation origin to ingredients and import to business pivot.

Multicultural cuisine, adaptation, integration influences of 1st wave and generational styles, preservation, and celebration of some of the most iconic neighborhood restaurant favorites in Chicago.

Etymology of some of the named dishes, which was super insightful.

Original restaurants including physical address location, along with related chains and franchise for in-dining experience or where to find the products online.

Process and presentation of the dishes to artistic creation.

<b>The Writing</b>
I really enjoyed the organization, which included historical timeline, beautiful photos of dishes, as well as historic photographs.

Measurements are in U.S. standard.

Lovely, and I look forward to seeing a copy on my kitchen cookbook shelf.

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This book fascinated and entertained me. It’s a travel book. A cultural history book. And a sort of secret recipe cookbook! I have visited parts of Chicago several times over the years, and so a few of the dishes brought back recognition and memories. But even if you are unfamiliar with Chicago neighborhoods and culture, you will learn lovely facts about legendary “Chicago foods” and the neighborhood stands, takeout shacks, and diners where these legends began. Very enjoyable!

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This is a cool af book. Not only does it tell you about the cool foods of Chicago (not just the hot dog or deep dish) it tells you the backstory, where you can get it in Chicago AND how to make it at home! Which I will be doing because Georgia isn’t close enough. That breaded steak sandwich is first up!

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Part cookbook, part travel guide, part history, this book is exactly what I was hoping for. I've only been to Chicago once in my life so I have no idea if there are any glaring omissions, but it had a lot of variety and I enjoyed reading about what makes the food items special and beloved.

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I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I dare you to read it and not want to take a road trip to Chicago to try all the foods in this book! I appreciated the pictures of all the different foods, the origin stories tracked down by the authors, and especially the recipes included for some of the foods. (I've got those bookmarked!)

Thank you to NetGalley and University of Illinois Press for the ARC. I didn't finish it before the publication date, but that just means it's available for you to read too.

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Nice little book about Chicago food. it covers a large range of different foods and gives a bit of the history of the different foods and places to get them and even some recipes to try and make them at home.

If you love that type of food or are someone that loves Chicago? a great book!

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This was a fun read for anyone who loves food, cooking, history or Chicago. The recipes were an unexpected bonus! The only negative I have is that I read it as an ebook, and I think it would be much better read as a paperback - but I'm old, so take that for what it's worth :)

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This book was lots of fun and I look forward to both visiting Chicago and trying some of these recipes at home - definitely worth the read!

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I'm a lifelong, 60+ year Chicagoland resident and I found this book, about Chicago's food delicacies, to be absolutely fascinating. Even after all these years living here, there were some foods I'd never heard of.

Some of the stories are about the well-known Chicago foods like deep dish pizza, Chicago-style hot dogs, and Italian beef, all favorites for me, along with pepper and egg sandwiches and pizza puffs, which are other favorites.

Some, I'd never heard of like Malort and mild sauce. But, either way, reading about how these famous and not so famous Chicago foods came to be is not only interesting but mouthwatering.

My only gripe, as a Polish American, is why no pierogis. Perhaps in a sequel?

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Thank you to publisher and netgalley for an arc!

I would say I enjoyed reading this book on recipes and local restaurants in Chicago. I would definitely recommend this if you plan on traveling or if you are a foodie and want to read a few quick facts about local food businesses. The formatting was a bit off as an e-read, but maybe it will be fixed once it is officially published.

I would definitely reread again whenever I have the chance.

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An insightful guide to local Chicago cuisine, and the delicious delights that sprung from its streets. Be prepared for a LOT of pickles and peppers - Chicagoans seem to love anything steeped in vinegar!
This tasty tome covers everything from the more famous hot dogs and deep dish pizzas, to less widely-known treats such as pizza puffs, Gam Pong chicken wings and the evil wormwood spirit, Malort.
Each delicacy gets its own chapter, with full colour images, a history of where the food started and how it evolved, as well as restaurants that currently serve it and even recipes to recreate it at home.
A great guide for both locals and visitors alike - I added a bunch of eateries to my wishlist of places to visit next time I'm in the Windy City.

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Amazing book with so much fun information on the history of Chicago's favorite food/dishes! I didn't know many of these stories/this information and would highly recommend this book. I learned so much, and really enjoyed the recipes and locations shared for each food item.

4.5 rounded up

Thank you to the author, University of Illinois Press, and NetGalley for providing a copy to review.

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This was such a fun book! I live in Chicago and have wondered about a lot of the food in this.

The recipes and stories and where to find the food were all fun, informative and interesting. I’m making the Saganaki recipe tomorrow. I’m definitely trying more of them soon.

This was written in a light and breezy tone. I’m going to be buying this for more than a few people! I highly recommend this one!

Thanks to NetGalley for the free copy. The opinions are all mine.

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I cannot even pretend to be unbiased when it comes to Chicago, including the food scene. We have everything here, from Michelin-starred restaurants to every national chain to mom-and-pop spots. “Made in Chicago: Stories Behind 30 Great Hometown Bites” by Monica Eng and David Hammond focuses on the local delectables, foods that were created or modified or popularized here in the city of big shoulders.

This is not for the faint of heart, you are in the Midwest in what used to be the meat provider for the nation, a town of hardworking immigrants. Our food is about being hearty and filling, a mix of different cultures and tastes, many are from the poorer sections of the south side. Yes, we have Italian beef, deep dish pizza, and Chicago style hot dogs, all of those are covered here. But we also have (among others) Chicago mix popcorn, Maxwell Street Polish sausage, Flaming Saganaki, gyros, Malort, mild sauce, pizza puffs, and so many, many more that will make you want to get out there and stuff your face (and finish it off with a Rainbow Cone!).

Ms. Eng and Mr. Hammond do a wonderful job of describing the dishes, along with a bit of history and background, often with the people who created the dish (or their descendants). Being an avid listener of the “Curious City” podcast, I have heard some of these stories from them already, but it’s great to have it all collected in one place.

This is a great reference not only for visitors, but for us living in the area who may forget the diversity available as we fall into our routines. I enjoyed this book so much that I have even forgiven the authors for not mentioning Superdawg, which is the perfect hotdog in this perfect city and the only major omission in this book.

I requested and received a free advanced electronic copy from University of Illinois Press, 3 Fields Books via NetGalley. Thank you!

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Foodies, this one's for you! I'm from Chicago, although I've lived abroad for several years, and this was a delicious way to "visit" one of my favorite places. Eng and Hammond walk you through 30 of Chicago's quintessential foods. Some you'll likely know, like the famous Italian Beef, Maxwell Street Polish, or Giardiniera. Others were completely new to me, like Akutagawa, the Mother-in-Law, and Taffy Grapes, but now I know what I'm eating next time I'm in town! Each chapter includes the history of the food, where you can eat it in Chicago, and a recipe so you can create it at home. Highly recommend!

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I have lived in Chicago for many years so this was a great trip down memory lane as well as letting me know where I can get some of my favorite foods even if the original restaurants no longer exist. I love that there were photos (some looked really delicious and some did not look tasty to me at all!). But don't read this if you are hungry unless you are close by one of the places mentioned. There are recipes as well which is a nice touch and there is a section on the history of the dish. A common theme is a tale of immigrants or the great migration bringing their own regional tastes up to Chicago to create delicious combinations -- one of my favorites is Akutagawa (hamburger, egg, onions, peppers and bean sprouts) as well as rib tips, pizza and hot dogs. This is a fun read with a great index to articles they used for research. I recommend this book.

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