A Squared: Weekend in Pictures: Summer is here!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Weekend in Pictures: Summer is here!

I just love summer.  This was the perfect summer weekend in the city-- nice and relaxed with gorgeous weather and hardly any scheduled plans.  We're jetting off to the east coast at the end of this week, so it was nice to spend some downtime in Chicago relaxing before a big weekend of travel and family celebration.  Here's how we spent our weekend....

Friday night was date night.  We headed up to Wicker Park for some pizza at Tocco, which felt like a restaurant straight out of my time in Italy.  We started with the Gnocco Fritto-- fried dough (think small chunks of an "elephant ear" coated with salt instead of sugar) and assorted cured meats.  Basically, Alex's dream.

On Saturday we ran some errands which included a trip to Home Depot to replace all of my dead herb and vegetable plants.  Remember when I made my first attempt at gardening earlier this year despite my brown thumb?  Yes, well... it is brown as ever.

We also took advantage of the fabulous Saturday weather and did a City Walk around River North, grilled some tuna (see below for details on dinner), and then met up with Alexis for roof deck cocktails in Lincoln Park.  Perfect summer Saturday!

 On Sunday we started the day with some homemade strawberry banana pancakes and then Alex was off to play soccer.  Alexis and I had a girls' day complete with lunch, pedicures, and a 5-mile walk along the lakefront path.  Alex and I ended the weekend with s'mores on the deck.  Not a bad weekend at all.  Hope you all enjoyed yours too!

And if you're interested in more info on dinner, here it is:  This is a nice light summer dinner.  It also requires a pretty minimal prep time so you can enjoy your summer Saturday out and about and not slave away in the kitchen when you get home.  The recipe for the tuna marinade is below and the pasta is a perfect summer side or even a light entree.

Grilled Rosemary Balsamic Tuna

  • 1 lb. tuna steak
  • 2 Tbs. Balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 Tbs. dry rosemary leaves
  • 1/2 tsp. dry basil
  • 1/2 tsp. dry oregano
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. salt

Whisk together Balsamic vinegar and the following 7 ingredients in a shallow glass dish.  Add the tuna to the mixture and flip 2 or 3 times to thoroughly coat the fish.  Cover and refrigerate for 2-3 hours, flipping the fish 2 or 3 more times while marinating. 

Preheat the grill to medium high heat.  Place the tuna steak directly on the grill and cook for about 4 minutes.  Turn the fish and grill on the other side for an additional 4 minutes until the tuna is cooked, but still pink and slightly rare in the center.

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