We’ve all heard the saying, “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach”. With Father’s Day less just a few days away, we thought it would be fun to ask dads throughout the company about their favorite summer meals.

Here are some of the most common answers to this question, based on our own catering menu offerings:

  • Mozzarella Tomato Salad
  • Elote Corn
  • Ceviche
  • Shrimp Pico de Gallo, Guacamole, Salsa Verde with Chips
  • Shrimp and Scallop Kabobs
  • Pulled BBQ Pork Sliders
  • Hot Dogs and Hamburgers
  • Blueberry Cobbler

Sensing a theme of fresh, grilled, and seasonal, we picked two of our favorite recipes to cook up for Dad next weekend. Make them yourself or put in a catering order and we’ll take over it for you!

MOZZARELLA TOMATO SALAD

Yield: 3lb

1 ½ lb mozzarella balls
1 ½ lb cherry tomatoes, cut in half
2/3 cup fresh basil leaves
¼ cup baby spinach
½ tsp fresh peeled garlic, roughly chopped
¾ cup olive oil
½ cup white balsamic vinegar
¼ cup dark balsamic glaze
Salt and pepper to season

Combine the basil, spinach and garlic in a blender. Drizzle in the olive oil slowly while the blender is running to emulsify. Add salt and pepper to taste, then strain the mixture through cheesecloth if desired, or leave as is.  Reserve on the side.

Bring the white balsamic vinegar to a boil and reduce by half to thicken. Remove from the heat and cool completely. Reserve on the side.

Just before serving, toss the mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, basil, oil and reduced white balsamic.  Season with salt and pepper if needed, then drizzle with the dark balsamic glaze.

BLUEBERRY COBBLER

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The hamburger is an American staple and can be enjoyed at restaurants around the world. Many chefs have tried to master the ultimate burger but Au Cheval has the battle for best burger under wraps.

Chicago is a city known for exceptional cuisine and although Au Cheval has only been around since 2012, it has more than earned its reputation. Patrons will stand in line for hours just to taste what Bon Appetit and The Food Network call “America’s best burger”. The lines may be long but we promise, it’s worth the wait. Locals, tourists, foodies, and celebrities all agree that if you’re going to eat a burger in Chicago, this is the place to go.

The restaurant is set up like a diner with long countertops and an open kitchen concept, making guests feel right at home. The menu serves up classics—but with their own twist. Patron’s favorites include Au Cheval’s crispy potato hash with duck heart gravy, scrambled eggs with foie gras, and of course, the burger.

Photo Credit: Facebook/Au Cheval

The famed Au Cheval burger is simple: it’s the combination of and attention to detail with ingredients that make it so great. Each and every ingredient adds another layer of flavor, building it up to masterpiece status.

The patty is made with prime beef and is grilled to a perfect medium rare (don’t you dare ask for yours to be “well done”!). After the meat is sizzling hot, a layer of American cheese is melted between each patty. The cheesy burger is then placed onto a gently toasted bun, delivered fresh from Z Bakery and then toasted under the salamander-like broiler, on both sides.

Once you’ve got the basics covered, you can order your burger naked or dressed. If you opt for the “dressed” route, expect a final product that’s smothered in dijonnaise: a dangerously delicious sauce made of lemon juice, mayo, and dijon mustard.

If you are feeling fancy, you can even add on a fried egg (au cheval translates in French to “on horseback”, or in this case, refers to “a fried egg on top”), some thick-cut bacon, or three ounces of silky foie gras. You’ll also have the choice between a single (two patties) or a double (three patties). The burger sits high on its white throne, next to a crisp pickle. If you still have room left, give one of their thick, creamy floats a whirl.

Located at 800 W Randolph St., if the line doesn’t catch your eye, the smell certainly will. So, next time you find yourself in the windy city, add Au Cheval to your list of restaurants to visit.


Catering By Michaels
May 15, 2018

Nothing Says Summer Like A BBQ

May 15, 2018

Nothing Says Summer Like A BBQ

Catering By Michaels

What’s your favorite thing about the warmer weather? For us, it’s weekends spent with good friends and great food.

With Spring coming to an end, and Summer right around the corner, we’ve got just the recipe for BBQ fun in the sun!

Outsource Your Party Prep

When it comes to throwing the perfect party, we know how important the menu is. When you’re a social butterfly, finding time to cook and entertain can be a challenge. Trying to please everyone when one guest is gluten-free and another is a vegetarian (and don’t forget about diary allergies) can really cut into your available time to enjoy the party! We understand the struggle, which is why our chefs work hard to ensure that there’s a bite of something delicious for everyone.

Focus on Seasonal Ingredients

Seasonality is a foodie’s best friend, which is why we focus on seasonal ingredients that are sure to delight. By selecting fruits and veggies in season, everyone gets a fresh meal that they can feel good about.

Menu Highlights, Finding Something For Everyone

Locking down a winning menu for your backyard BBQ is priority number one. When the sun is beating hot, nothing cools guests down quite like our refreshing watermelon & feta salad (which is both gluten-free and vegetarian). This Summer favorite tames sweet and salty cravings in one flavorful forkful.

Watermelon and Feta Salad for summer BBQs

Will you and guests be throwing back a beer or two? Pair your brews with our mini sandwiches. A recommendation? The miniature Piri-Piri Turkey Sandwich. It’s made up of smoked turkey breast, piri-piri sauce, avocado, sunflower seed aillade, tomato, mixed greens and garlic aioli on a freshly baked herbed ciabatta roll. Or our mini Italian beef sandwiches. 

Italian Beef Sandwich

Of course, with so many tasty options available, you’ll want to take a peek at our full Summer menu.

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Catering By Michaels
May 8, 2018

Chicago Serves Up Winners at James Beard Awards

May 8, 2018

Chicago Serves Up Winners at James Beard Awards

Catering By Michaels

For those who know the Chicago culinary scene, it is no surprise to see restaurants, bars, and professionals in the food and beverage world named among the best in America by the James Beard Foundation. Known as the Oscars of the food world, the James Beard Awards are among the highest honors for those in the food and beverage industry in the U.S., from chefs to food journalists.

The Windy City had no issues blowing the competition out of the water in the “Best Chef: Great Lakes” category with 13 out of 20 individuals named showcasing their work in Chicago. However, the city’s dominance extended far beyond regional success.

Kevin Boehm and Rob Katz, of Boka Restaurant Group, made the list of “Best Restaurateurs”.

Michelin-starred Boka was the groups’ first restaurant, opening in 2013. Today, it is one of 19 individually crafted, conceptually unique entities under the group’s umbrella. Also in its impressive portfolio, you’ll find Girl & the Goat (one of the most difficult places to get a reservation in the country—but worth the effort) and GT Fish & Oyster.

Chicago’s culinary scene also saw a couple rising stars make the list of “Best New Restaurants”. Chef Diana Davila brings to life a whirlwind mixture of regional Mexican specialties, Mexican fusion, and established favorites at Mi Tocaya Antojeria. Last year, Eater named Mi Tocaya Antojeria as “the new star of Chicago’s Mexican scene”—and it seems that those handing out awards at the James Beard Foundation were keen to agree.

Also on the list of best new restaurants in the nation was Lost Lake, which plates up a “tropical oasis-meets-flotsam strewn island hut” vibe.

However, it was North Pond, headed by Chef Bruce Sherman, that stepped up to make the list of “Outstanding Restaurants” in this year’s awards. In the middle of Lincoln Park, the restaurant serves dishes inspired by ingredients found in local markets at the height of their season, creating complex, subtle layers of flavor.

Though Chef Sherman’s restaurant might have garnered a prestigious JBA accolade, Chef Tony Mantuano, of Spiaggia, and Chef Carrie Nahabedian, of NAHA, made it on the “Outstanding Chef” list.

Operating Chicago’s only four-star Italian restaurant, Chef Mantuano is no stranger to the receiving a JBA, having secured “Best Chef: Midwest” in 2005. Prior to opening Spiaggia in 1984, Chef Mantuano worked in several Michelin-starred restaurants in Italy. Clearly, there really was no surprise to see him among those honored with a JBA this year.

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Catering By Michaels
May 3, 2018

Treat Mom to the Gift of Relaxation with Mother’s Day Brunch Catering

May 3, 2018

Treat Mom to the Gift of Relaxation with Mother’s Day Brunch Catering

Catering By Michaels

Moms do so much for us. They’re always willing to give advice (solicited or not!), always have a shoulder to cry on when things get tough, and best of all—they love us no matter what. Then there’s the fact that they’re the reason why we’re here in the first place!

With all of these things in mind, it only seems fair to give back on Mother’s Day. Moms give so much every day of the year—the least we can do is give them a day of relaxation and appreciation!

One way to show mom just how much she means to you is by organizing a Mother’s Day brunch in her honor. And just so mom doesn’t feel any pressure to cook or clean up on her special day, consider ordering a delicious delivered brunch from Catering by Michaels.

Below are a few brunch ideas, but as always, we can customize a menu based on mom’s favorites:

SWEET STARTERS/BUFFET SELECTION

MINIATURE SWEETS DU JOUR

Assorted quickbreads, scones, muffins, danish and croissants.

HOMEMADE STRAWBERRY & COCONUT GRANOLA BARS

FRENCH TOAST KEBOBS

Glazed with a caramel Grand Marnier sauce with fresh grilled pineapple and strawberry.

APPETIZERS AND SIDES

DEVILED EGGS WITH SMOKED SALMON & TOBIKKO

SPRINGTIME SALAD 

Mesclun greens, romaine, red leaf lettuce and spinach, celery, scallions, mandarin oranges, strawberries and glazed sliced almonds in our homemade strawberry vinaigrette.

Mother's day salad

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