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Crispy Chicken Tenders, simply delicious

There are days when all I want to eat are crispy chicken tenders. And maybe some french fries. (Though crispy roasted potatoes will work, too.) And I’ll be honest that is pretty much every day. It’s not that I don’t love a broad range of cuisines, from Sichuan fish-fragrant eggplant to Mediterranean baked sweet potatoes …

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Vietnamese Flank Steak with Citrus-Mint Cabbage Salad

It is officially spring. But official spring never feels like the spring that exists in my imagination. The mud-luscious and puddle-wonderful spring with green shoots and sun peaking through rain and warm breezes and new beginnings. Official spring in Chicago is something altogether different. It is one day in a series of false starts. It is …

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Sweet and Spicy Korean Cauliflower

For much of my life, I was largely indifferent to cauliflower. It was something I might pick from a veggie tray if the carrots and cucumbers were gone. Raw, it was Bunnicula’s broccoli, sort of crunchy and faintly bitter. It was, I guess, okay. I felt similarly about steamed cauliflower. It was milder and softer. It was fine. …

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Sichuan “Fish Fragrant” Eggplant with Bacon

Eggplant is a fickle fruit. It is technically a fruit and not a vegetable, despite its savory leanings. Its flavor can be unpleasantly bitter. Its texture can be too chewy or too mushy if it is over or under cooked. It can act like a sponge when it’s in a pan with oil, becoming heavy …

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