Windy City Steaks and Blogger Meet Up!

Beef, It's What's for Dinner

I had to smile at yesterday’s TimeHop – Heather and Karli, can you believe this was three years ago already?  I recapped my day at The Chopping Block on this post back in October of 2013.   I never in a million years would have thought three years later I’d be working there!

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I was happy that my schedule allowed me to take the train to work yesterday, because it was an icky day and I am not a fan of driving in the rain.  I fixed a bagel sammie for the train ride – Dutch Farms brand bagels are only 6 smart points, so with the egg whites, ham, cheese and spinach, this sammie comes in at 10 smart points.  Served on a paper towel because I am classy like that.

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This is what it looked like when I walked into work – the clouds were hanging so low you could hardly see the tops of the buildings.

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It was a private party of a small group of 22.  The menu was Chicago steak house menu that included shrimp cocktail, a chopped salad with blue cheese, radicchio, romaine and a killer salad dressing, twice baked potatoes, steak with a red wine compound butter, dinner rolls from scratch AND cheesecake with a raspberry sauce.

PicMonkey Collage - tcb

I have to mention that The Chopping Block does not skimp on quality of ingredients.  Chef Andrew above broke down a whole beef tenderloin to get these amazing steaks, and while I am not the hugest fan of shallots, this red wine compound butter was pretty amazing.  This is something that could really elevate a weeknight dinner, or impress when you have company over.

This recipe is compliments of The Chopping Block.

Steak with Red Wine Compound Butter
Serves 4
A make ahead compound butter elevates steak night to a whole new level. Perfect for a weeknight or with company!
Write a review
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
20 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
20 min
1101 calories
2 g
347 g
106 g
33 g
65 g
265 g
157 g
0 g
4 g
33 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 1101
Calories from Fat 932
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 106g
Saturated Fat 65g
Trans Fat 4g
Polyunsaturated Fat 4g
Monounsaturated Fat 29g
Cholesterol 347mg
Sodium 157mg
Total Carbohydrates 2g
Dietary Fiber 0g
Sugars 0g
Protein 33g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the butter
  1. 1/2 cup red wine
  2. 1 medium shallot, peeled and sliced
  3. 2 tablespoons fresh herbs
  4. 4 stick butter, room temperature
  5. Salt and pepper to taste
For the steaks
  1. 16 ounces steak (filet mignon, New York strip, or rib-eye), allowed to sit out for 30 minutes, covered
  2. Salt and pepper to taste
  3. 2 tablespoons butter
  1. 1. Make compound butter: Place the wine and shallot in a small, heavy saucepan, and simmer until reduced to a thick syrup. Allow to cool to room temperature.
  2. 2. Chop the herbs in a food processor, add the wine-shallot syrup, and then the softened butter. Process to blend, and season with salt and pepper. Roll into a tube in plastic wrap, and refrigerate or freeze until needed. (May be made ahead.)
  3. 3. Season the steaks with salt and pepper to taste. Preheat a heavy sauté pan over medium heat, and add the 2 tablespoons butter. Sauté the steaks on the first side until caramelized, 3 to 4 minutes. Flip and repeat. Continue to cook the steaks to your liking. An internal temperature of 125° is ideal for medium rare.
  4. Remove the steaks from the pan, and top with a generous slice of the shallot butter. Allow the steaks to rest for about 5 minutes.
  1. This dish is served at most of Chicago’s classic restaurants and steakhouses. It’s steak seared in butter until deeply caramelized and then served with a generous amount of red wine and shallot butter. Salt-baked fingerling potatoes often accompany the steak and help soak up the butter; for tonight, we’ll be serving the steak alongside a delicious twice-baked potato.
  2. * I reduced the amount of compound butter to serve 4 servings, because there was a ton of butter leftover.  You could easily make the compound butter 8 servings.
Adapted from The Chopping Block
My Bizzy Kitchen

Before I knew it, it was time to meet up with my long time blog friend Aimee of Amazing in Motion.   She and I started following each other when Hannah was in high school, so ate least six years?  She’s in town to do the Chicago Marathon on Sunday and it looks like the weather is going to be amazing for it.   She’s vegan, so I wanted to find a place that she would be comfortable eating at.  I made some granola and jelly for her, but decided last minute not to bring it with because I didn’t want her to eat anything unusual before race day and I didn’t want to be responsible if she had a bad race by eating something new.  I’ll be sending you a care package when you get back Aimee!

PicMonkey Collage - native

Native Café is a local Chicago chain that has three locations.  I relied on Yelp to point me in the right direction on what to order.  I ordered a small order of the “chicken” buffalo strips that had a delicious celery, carrot and ranch dressing underneath.  The Thai chicken meatballs with a spicy slaw, and the sweet potato fries.  I was tempted by the flyer to order the jackfruit tacos – I’ve never had jackfruit before, so I decided to stick with what I got.  And I have to tell you – everything was delicious.  The chicken tenders had the taste and texture of chicken – still not sure what it’s made of – maybe seiten or tempeh?! 

The best part about a blogger meet up with someone else who blogs is that it’s like meeting an old friend even if you are meeting in person for the first time.  I’ve seen her son grow up since he was about 4 years old.  She’s  super nice, down to earth and I know she’ll rock the run on Sunday.  It’s supposed to be a high of 67 with a low of 50 with low humidity.  Her husband and her son are her biggest fans and it was great to meet them too after reading about them for so many years.

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It’s another work day for me – whoop!  This time I am doing a grill class with one of my favorite Chef’s and actually only the second time I’ve worked with him.  Then I am working an all day wine event on Sunday at the Merchandise Mart.  Someone who was scheduled had a family emergency and couldn’t work, so I stepped in.  Because, um, there is no “I” in team!  Ha!

Right now I am about to pull out an Italian sausage and broccoli frittata out of the oven, then getting my walking shoes on.  It’s a gorgeous 64 degrees!

Hope you have an awesome weekend – make it a great day!

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  • Heather
    October 7, 2016 at 10:48 am

    WE ARE SO CUTE!!! I can’t believe it was three years ago in Chi-town. When I first saw you were working at the Chopping Block I got so excited reminiscing about our time there together. LOVE THAT PLACE! So much cooking cuteness and kitchen envy in one building!!

    Holley Grainger and I were recently reminiscing about our trip with you to Texas, too! (and your trip to Colorado together – which sounded AMAZING!) We would not stop gushing about how much we adore you. 🙂 🙂 🙂 You have such a great personality – generous, creative, sweet AND sassy (the best folks have both, ya know), and oh-so-much-FUN to be around – you leave a lasting impression on everyone you meet.

    Have a great weekend, Biz!!

    • Biz
      October 8, 2016 at 8:55 am

      Wow Heather, what a great comment! Made me teary reading it. Hope our paths cross again some day – hugs!!

  • kris
    October 7, 2016 at 10:57 am

    Oh I love Native Foods!!! They also have locations in several other cities and were supposed to being opening a lot of restaurants across the country. I’m still hoping for one in my neck of the woods. I highly recommend any of the bowls and watch out for that oat meal creme pie, definitely insulin worthy. While I have not had their jackfruit taco, I am a big fan of jackfruit entrees on the whole. I think you must be to get your “vegan” card. Looks like a great day and good luck on your race Aimee : }.

    • Biz
      October 8, 2016 at 8:56 am

      I didn’t really know what to expect, but the food was good. I don’t even know if I’ve ever seen jackfruit in the grocery store before, but next time I go there, I’ll try it. 😀

  • Shelley B
    October 7, 2016 at 11:17 am

    Hurrah for another blogger meet up! Gotta love those, and you are so right – it’s like meeting with an old friend. I have never had one where we didn’t just instantly fall into conversation.

    • Biz
      October 8, 2016 at 8:59 am

      It was a lot of fun – I know we’ll continue to be great friends 😀

  • Aimee
    October 7, 2016 at 10:28 pm

    It was such fun meeting up with you Biz. It was so kind of you to not only treat us to dinner, but to take a chance on an all vegan dinner! My son still doesn’t quite get the fact that his “chicken” strips were not chicken!! We are having a great time and will definitely be back for another visit.

    • Biz
      October 8, 2016 at 9:01 am

      It was so great meeting you too Aimee – and so proud and envious of your running skills – you will do amazing tomorrow!!

  • Abbe@This is How I Cook
    October 9, 2016 at 8:55 pm

    I love reading abut all your new adventures. Wish we had a place like Chopping Block here. Your food is looking mighty fine!

  • Pam
    October 10, 2016 at 10:42 am

    You said it right about meeting a blogger friend in person. It really is like seeing an old friend. I finally had it happen this summer and it was fantastic! The Chopping Block sounds like a place I would love to frequent! 🙂