Signature Dishes: Shrimp DeJonghe at Café Touché, Mexican street corn at Qué Onda, personal charcuterie boards at Daniel’s Charcuterie and steak fajitas at Howard Street Inn
A look at some favorite local menu items that usually prove too difficult to turn down
By Trent Modglin
Shrimp DeJonghe appetizer at Café Touché
Consider us lucky enough to have snagged a sneak peek at this new appetizer from the talented team at Cafe Touche in Edison Park in late February — prior to it even hitting the menu, we might add. May we introduce the shrimp DeJonghe, a famous Chicago specialty dating back to the late 19th century.
It’s a tantalizing baked casserole made with plump shrimp, a garlic butter sauce and sherry-laced bread crumbs, arriving at your table in all its sizzling splendor. Sounds good, no? Well, take it from us: It tastes even better than it looks and sounds. If you’re looking for a second appetizer for the table, Touché is known for their Price Edward Island mussels and fritto misto as well.
6731 N. Northwest Highway in Edison Park. CafeTouche.com
The shrimp DeJonghe is a tantalizing baked casserole made with plump shrimp, a garlic butter sauce and sherry-laced bread crumbs, arriving at your table in all its sizzling splendor.
Elotes at Qué Onda
Every time we visit Qué Onda, there are a few must haves. For the wife, it’s a fresh margarita. For me, it’s an assortment street tacos (shrimp and steak especially). If my brother in law is visiting, it’s the confit pork shank that is fall-off-the-bone tender.
Do not forget elotes as a side for the table at Qué Onda. Maybe make it two orders, in case you don’t feel like sharing quite as much as you thought you would.
But for the table? It’s a must-share bowl of elotes — otherwise known as Mexican street corn that is drizzled with garlic mayo, chili and lime. Delectable, I tell you. Do not forget this as a side for the table. Maybe make it two orders, in case you don’t feel like sharing quite as much as you thought you would, which is natural.
6701 N. Northwest Highway in Edison Park. QueOndaEdisonPark.com
Daniel’s Charcuterie’s personal charcuterie boards
Looking for lunch on the go, something healthy for the kids to nibble on, or just an individual-sized charcuterie plate to enjoy on your own? Daniel’s Charcuterie has you covered. Get a taste for one of their select meats and cheeses — like pancetta and drunken goat cheese (insider’s tip: the edible rind is where the wine is at) — as well as crispy bread, blackberries, strawberries and grapes. Oh, and don’t sleep on the French-style cornichons pickles. They’re fantastic.
“We really like offering this condensed version for people who are looking to dabble with charcuterie and get their feet wet, or just want a single serving or hefty snack,” says owner/chef Daniel Borland. “It’s perfect in a lot of ways.”
15 S. Fairview in Park Ridge. DanielsCharcuterie.com
Family friendly and ideal for group outings, the Howard Street Inn’s menu is loaded with more than enough comfort food options for everyone’s palate.
Steak fajitas at the Howard Street Inn
This lively sports bar and restaurant connected to the Tam O’Shanter Golf Course has a longstanding reputation for quality food and plenty of fun (plan to make a day of it on the patio this summer). Family friendly and ideal for group outings, the Howard Street Inn’s menu is loaded with more than enough comfort food options for everyone’s palate.
The chicken and steak fajitas, which arrive to the table sizzling in a skillet with onions and green and red peppers, are quite popular when they’re on special on Wednesdays. Side note: You’d be hard pressed to find a better spot to watch March Madness than that Howard Street Inn, especially when you include some of the best daily specials in the area.
6700 W. Howard Street in Niles. HowardStreetInn.com