Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Bang Bang Pie Shop

It's Halloween! And we didn't dress up or go to any parties at all this year. But I'm okay with that. It's fun every other year or if you have a good party to go to, but if you're just going out to a bar, then I'd rather save my money. 

So I have fallen in love with Bang Bang Pie Shop in Logan Square. Specifically the biscuits with butter and jam. These things are so fluffy, but yet dense. They have a nice crispy top, and when you add some  peach butter or blackberry jam, it's like heaven in your mouth. Also add a cup of their delicious coffee and you can just melt into a puddle of happiness. I always want to try a sample of everything, so I got the salted butter, black pepper butter, peach butter, cherry jam, blackberry jam, and lavender honey. They are all so fresh, I love it. 

I originally went to try the pie. They offer 3 different kinds that rotate about each month. A chocolate, a fruit, and a cream pie. I got the Banana Walnut Toffee pie with caramel sauce, and the Oreo pie. The banana was awesome, and the Oreo was just okay. The white mousse part was a little too sweet for me.

I went back last weekend and got the Pumpkin Pie with streusel, and the Apple Crumble pie. Both were yummy, and I plan on coming back to try the others when they switch them out.

Bang Bang Pie is a cute little shop with only about 6 tables inside, but on warm days they have a side yard area with picnic tables that makes you feel like you're in somebody's backyard in the country, and there should be clothes hanging out on a line to dry. I just hope that in the winter, there are enough seats inside because it's been packed the 2 times I've been! 

I also just found out that they are taking orders for whole pies and pans of biscuits for Thanksgiving!! I really want to get a pan of biscuits, but I'm afraid they won't be as good as when they're fresh and warm. Plus, I like to add all the butters and jams when I'm there, and I'm not sure if they would give you this stuff at home. I'll have to find out....

Lots of other stuff has been going on this month. I got to visit the fam and take my niece shoe shopping while I was there. She is such a diva. Luckily, she went for the slip-on checkered Vans so she's still cool. 

I also went to Harvest Homecoming, which is my hometown's big fall festival. There's all kinds of good food, crafts, rides, and crazy people. It really does bring out the strangest people. But I got to eat some pumpkin ice cream, rolled oysters, chicken and dumplings, and homemade donuts. 

I'm getting excited for the holidays! The book club I'm in is having a cookie exchange, and I've never done one so I am super pumped! 

Friday, October 5, 2012

Favorite Things and Pie Contest

Boy do I love pretzel buns. I really love anything pretzel-like. Flat pretzel crisps, soft pretzels from Auntie Annies, and pretzel buns are my favorites. I started seeing pretzel buns on burgers in lots of Chicago restaurants, and I think it's slowly but surely spreading outside the city and into grocery stores, too. I bought these mini pretzel buns at Whole Foods, and they made our buffalo chicken sandwiches 100 times better! If somewhere offers a pretzel bun, I usually get it. Keep 'em coming!

Not a good picture, but Oatmeal Squares is one of my new favorite cereals. My mom actually started buying it a while ago, and so I have her to thank, because I probably wouldn't have just bought them to try on my own. They are kind of plain, but have a good oat-y taste that I really like.

Larabar is a really good healthy snack bar, made usually of dates and other nuts or dried fruits. Most of the bars are standard, like peanut butter or cherry, but I was SO excited when I saw this Banana Foster one, and it did not disappoint, let me tell you. It was awesome. It probably had a ton of sugar in it, but it still was on the healthy side, so I scarfed it down. 

Hilary's Cookies is a little cookie shop near my house, but I got this cookie at Whole Foods. They are vegan! I really couldn't tell, so that makes it an awesome cookie. It was really soft and crumbly, and I think I tasted some coconut flakes or something like that, which was different. Good stuff. 

This one is NOT one of my favorite things, but I had to show you because it looks amazing doesn't it? It tasted too healthy for me. Ha! It had that protein powder taste that most of these energy bars have. I was hoping it was going to be really good, but nope. Didn't really taste smores-y at all. 

I was in a pie contest! It was put on by Pastry Chicago. This is my pie. I made a nectarine-blueberry crumble pie. I've never really made a pie with fruit, so I was pretty nervous to make this pie and serve it to the judges without tasting it myself. But it ended up tasting just fine, so I'm just proud of myself for doing it! 

My pal Emily won 5th place with her Spumoni pie! (on the left) I'm so proud of her! I'm so glad that she told me about these contests, and I plan on entering as many more as I can. The next one is Haunted Cupcakes, and I was going to enter, but I'm going to be out of town that weekend :( But I will definitely enter the next one! 

They just turned on the radiator heat in my apartment building since it's pretty chilly out tonight, and it is so loud and it's making the air so dry in here!! I hate that we can't control it. We might have to open our windows tonight so we don't suffocate from the heaters!