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Michele Hays
Works at Quips, Travails and Braised Oxtails
Attended Thomas More College
Lives in Evanston, IL 60202, United States
30 followers|148,657 views
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Michele Hays

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Wow, this was 3 1/2 years ago!  Hard to believe!
From way, way back in 2011, we bring you our most famous post ever: I don’t know if you followed the escape of the Bronx Zoo Cobra and its subsequent capture…but Sparky and I followed the cobra’s alleged Twitter Stream closely. We all have our favorite cobra tweets – Sparky’s is @BronxZoosCobra “Indiana Jones, why... <a href="http://www.chicagonow.com/quips-travails-braised-oxtails/2014/08/the-wayback-machine-bronxzooscobra-cake/" class="more-lin...
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When life gives you produce - make pickles!
One of the best parts of summer is that I’ve got friends with an overabundance of produce – and this post is brought to you by a particularly generous friend who has a CSA. The haul included significantly more than just turnips, onions, and Mizuna, so I thought some kind of preservation might be in... <a href="http://www.chicagonow.com/quips-travails-braised-oxtails/2014/07/sundays-with-sparky-salted-mizuna-and-nukazuke-style-pickled-turnips/" cl...
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Anyone want to give this beauty a home?  If you can get a truck near Xavier University and pick it up, we're happy to negotiate a terrific price.   #reedorgan  
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Dad is great!  But we didn't make Chocolate Cake, we made this instead...
I have to admit, I get more than a little annoyed at the plethora of recipes across the internet claiming to be “one-ingredient,” or “two-ingredient” where one or both of the ingredients is some kind of mix with a bunch of stuff in it. So I won’t make that claim for this custard, even though... <a href="http://www.chicagonow.com/quips-travails-braised-oxtails/2014/06/sundays-with-sparky-easy-custard-and-fruit-tart/" class="more-link">Read more »<...
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I made this recipe a long time ago, and have made it several times since then – and learned a lot.  So, if you go back to my old blog, you’ll notice I made some tweaks. Someday, Sparky will go to college. Like it or not, there is a future ahead where he goes out... <a href="http://www.chicagonow.com/quips-travails-braised-oxtails/2014/05/the-wayback-machine-super-easy-spinach-pasta/" class="more-link">Read more »</a>
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Have her in circles
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Michele Hays

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Mmmm...blat.
If you’ve never put avocado on your BLT, I heartily recommend that you try.  You can even skip the mayo if you like (although Sparky prefers his with.) We also have a new way of cooking bacon: in water!  Adding a little water to the skillet helps the fat render out of the bacon, and... <a href="http://www.chicagonow.com/quips-travails-braised-oxtails/2014/09/sundays-with-sparky-blat-sandwich-bacon-lettuce-avocado-and-tomato/" class="more-link">Re...
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The perfect summer meal.
Yes, yes, I know. Tofu is for other people: people who grew up with it, or people who put health before flavor, right? WRONG! I have to admit, I never liked tofu, even was a bit afraid of it… until Sparky ordered it at a local restaurant. I learned a lot from that dish, mainly... <a href="http://www.chicagonow.com/quips-travails-braised-oxtails/2014/07/sundays-with-sparky-lemongrass-tofu-banh-mi-caramelized-tofu-hoagies/" class="more-link">Read m...
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Love Hurts
Yes, this is a story of love, and also a story of the sometimes unpleasantly surprising elements of a recipe. Eventually, this is a story of redemption. You see, at our Winter Farmer’s Market, Sparky had discovered Sweet Collective‘s Ruth and Phil’s ice cream – so, along with our popcorn and hardneck garlic, we came home... <a href="http://www.chicagonow.com/quips-travails-braised-oxtails/2014/07/the-wayback-machine-ice-cream-cones-or-love-and-bu...
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Wherein we de-mystify a restaurant classic...
Crab Rangoon are one of those quirky American recipes that we file under “exotic.”  I’m sure that was the intent of the infamous Trader Vic’s, where the recipe seems to have originated. They claimed the appetizer was based on a Burmese recipe (hence the name Rangoon, really Yangon – a former capitol of Myanmar, whose... <a href="http://www.chicagonow.com/quips-travails-braised-oxtails/2014/06/sundays-with-sparky-baked-crab-rangoon/" class="more-l...
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Ever have one of those days when you have only part of a recipe in your pantry?
Sometimes, you look in the refrigerator and you’re halfway to a good meal…the other half just depends on whether you can fake it the rest of the way. I’d happened onto some delicious peel-and-eat shrimp, and had poached half of them in their shells to make shrimp cocktail, saving the poaching liquid for…something. I cast... <a href="http://www.chicagonow.com/quips-travails-braised-oxtails/2014/05/sundays-with-sparky-approximately-tom-yum-soup/" c...
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Shades of things to come...
Sparky, sigh, is growing. It couldn’t be helped – at some point your little sous-chef reaches the age when he’s handing YOU things from the tall shelf instead of the other way around, and you’ve got to adjust. As a parent, you know that adulthood is inevitable and you even look forward to it, but... <a href="http://www.chicagonow.com/quips-travails-braised-oxtails/2014/05/sundays-with-sparky-college-survival-foods-guacamole-and-queso-dip/" class=...
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People
Have her in circles
30 people
Ekwueme Prince's profile photo
Keshia knox-sanders's profile photo
Paul Blair's profile photo
foodiebeauty crystal (criss)'s profile photo
Александр Куценко's profile photo
Derrick Stinson's profile photo
Malik Turley's profile photo
Sanjay Kumar's profile photo
Ava George Stewart's profile photo
Work
Employment
  • Quips, Travails and Braised Oxtails
    Recipe Writer, Photographer, present
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Evanston, IL 60202, United States
Previously
Atlanta, GA, United States - Covington, KY, United States
Story
Introduction
I'm a local foodie and community activist. You can find me on LinkedIn, Facebook, (occasionally) Twitter and on my blog, Quips, Travails and Braised Oxtails, which most recently moved to ChicagoNow.
Education
  • Thomas More College
    Drama, English and Communications, 1986 - 1991
  • Notre Dame Academy
    1986
Basic Information
Gender
Female
Something for everyone here: terrific schwarma and lassi drinks for the more globally minded, excellent burgers and fries for the globetrotting-impaired, milkshakes for the sweet tooth, all served with a smile and genuine family pride. Delicious. Try it.
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
Chute Middle School is an undiscovered gem in South Evanston. I believe it is the best school in the City, despite having a large population of at-risk kids. It is housed in a beautiful building (unfairly maligned because of the front entryway) with a gorgeous courtyard garden in the center. Staff and teachers are incredibly kind and helpful, and still put safety and order first. Students are held accountable and encouraged to excel in their behavior as well as academics, and are offered supports like a free, teacher-driven afterschool "homework club" to ensure they succeed. My son, who struggled a bit in elementary school, has really blossomed under the care of the Chute teachers and staff - and I see that his friends do as well.
• • •
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
2 reviews
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