• Now this is a cover story we can get behind: Monica Kass Rogers dives into the tricky art of making homemade chips. Not owning a deep-fryer ourselves, the one time we tried this, we found it to be seriously time-consuming but the results were more than worth it. Rogers checks in with how some top-notch chefs do it, and they’re not limited to potatoes — L2O fries up artichokes, Carnivale does a mix of tubers. But it gets even more awesome: at sola, Carol Wallack makes dessert chips.
• Bill Daley takes a page from the carpe diem poets (Andrew Marvell, pre-religiousness John Donne, the usual) and urges us to open our best wines now. For tomorrow we die? No, that’s a mixed literary metaphor. It’s because this Friday is Open That Bottle Night, a kick in the butt holiday designed to get wine-hoarders to actually uncork and enjoy the darn things. We can get behind this.
• Jeannine Stein re-reports on the study that noted that changing portion sizes in The Joy of Cooking means that, correspondingly, the calories per serving are going up. We didn’t really understand why this exercise in basic math was newsworthy when it first hit, and we’re still not sure now.
• Rick Asa checks in from this past weekend’s American Culinary Federation’s Regional Chef of the Year competition, held at Elgin Community College. Much like in the pageant system, the winner advances to a more geographically inclusive regional competition, and then the winner of that gets crowned Miss America.
• Chicken and dumplings: super-delicious.