5 Appetizer Ideas From Cravings on Clark

Cravings on Clark: a food-lover’s bar crawl, complete with heavenly dinner bites of all cuisines, including Italian, Irish, Japanese, Brunch, Cupcake and Doughnut (yes, brunch, doughnuts and cupcakes are definitely cuisines, right?).

This appetizers-for-din night out means you get to try it all – and take your fave ideas home for your next party.

Cravings on Clark


I am pretty sure Cravings on Clark was made for me.  A restaurant crawl including all the must-visit restaurants on Clark, serving up petite selections from their menu?! I’ve died and gone to party app heaven. Outside of the torrential downpour (I may be exaggerating slightly), we felt like VIP at  every restaurant.  We anxiously awaited for our bites, oh-ed and ah-ed about our favorites, unapologetically made a scene. I so wish you were there.

Couldn’t make it the crawl this year because the weather was gross or don’t live Chi? So you can live vicariously through me, I’ve got the lowdown on the experience and appetizer ideas from this weeknight event (party on a school night!). My next step? Making these at home stat, and I hope you are too.

5 Appetizer Ideas from Cravings on Clark

Appetizer Idea #1 from Cravings on Clark: Cheese fries are not just for eating out anymore.

I have a love affair with cheese fries (see my Loaded Sweet Potato Fries!) and think they belong at home for necessary moments of indulging. Similar to HopCat’s Crack Fries (aka “Beer battered fries sprinkled with our signature cracked black pepper seasoning”), which was served DIY style for Cravings on Clark, I’d recommend laying out  ingredients for everyone to create their own. Time to get fancy, top fries with any of the below:

Chili

Bacon

Taco Meat

Pulled Pork

Corn Jalapeno Salsa

Want to make the fries at home instead of the frozen kind? See Old Bay Fries on how to make them. Either will do, especially for a busy week!

Cravings on Clark

Appetizer Idea #2 from Cravings on Clark: The Slider.

When you are out of appetizer ideas and want to bring a unique option to the party, don’t forget the slider.  Any of your favorite burgers, such as traditional, stuffed or the big mac, will work in slider form. The girls and I were jumping up and down for Dunlays on Clark’s Mini Filet Sandwiches: a filet medallion with blue cheese candied onions. My choice for entertaining at home?: Goat Cheese Steakettes.  Simply follow the recipe of goat cheese, caramelized onions and figs, top individual steaks, and add a bun.

Cravings on Clark

Appetizer Idea #3 from Cravings on Clark: Breakfast for dinner is now breakfast for appetizer.

Apps are meant for sharing and I absolutely love the idea of serving brunch appetizers. Picture this: everyone is over for brunch, the mimosas are flowing and “A Sunday Kind of Love” by Etta James is playing in the background. The menu consists of:

Chicken and Waffle Bites

Mini french toast

Fruit kobabs with prosciutto, mozzarella & mint

Egg muffins

This family style brunch would be rowdy and fun – perfect for sunday funday.  Do it like Orange Contemporary Brunch at Cravings and serve Rosemary French Toast with a fresh orange as garnish.

Cravings on Clark

Appetizer Idea #4 from Cravings on Clark:  It’s time for you to try a Yuca Bite.

The first time I tried Yuca, I had no idea what I was eating.  It was on my family  vacay in the bahamas; we went searching for local veggies, found  this funky-looking root and decided to give it a try. Traveling like a local is the best, right?  Little did I know that I’d be eating a Yuca bite a few months later at Peruvian Chopo Chicken and loving it just as much.  Chopo’s was fried with cheese in the middle, served with Huancaina Sauce (yellow hot pepper paste sauce) and I was a HUGE fan.

Yuca is similar to a potato and can be found by the potatoes at the grocery.  Want to make at home?: try The Healthy Maven’s Crispy Baked Yuca Fries.  They are crispy on the outside, soft on the inside and are the best way to mix up your appetizer game.

Cravings on Clark

Appetizer Idea #5 from Cravings on Clark: Your next app party idea – Italian Tapas.

Chances are, when you ask me where I want to go to dinner, there’s a 95% chance that I’ll pick Italian (speaking of, our wedding rehearsal dinner is at Sappori Trattoria and we can’t wait!).  Problem is, I literally want everything on the menu. Do you ever have that problem?  My solution: learn from Pasta Bowl and plan an Italian Tapas dinner party, appetizer-style.  Be sure to include small portions, meant to be shared, such as the below:

Bolognese bruschetta 

Burrata cheese with prosciutto

Baked rigatoni

Deep dish minis 

Panko ravioli

Just don’t forget the red wine.

Cravings on Clark

Thanks to the participating restaurants from Cravings on Clark and thanks for reading, loves! For more information on the event, see here.

Cheers!

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