The Chicago-Invented Delicacies That Help Define The City’s Food Scene

With the “Curious City Scavenger Hunt: Chicago Eats Edition” now underway, we’re revisiting a story about foods created right here in Chicago.

Jibarito from Jibarito y Mas
One Chicago food icon is the jibarito—a sandwich that uses fried plantains as bread—served here at Jibaritos Y Mas in Logan Square. Monica Eng / WBEZ
Jibarito from Jibarito y Mas
One Chicago food icon is the jibarito—a sandwich that uses fried plantains as bread—served here at Jibaritos Y Mas in Logan Square. Monica Eng / WBEZ

The Chicago-Invented Delicacies That Help Define The City’s Food Scene

With the “Curious City Scavenger Hunt: Chicago Eats Edition” now underway, we’re revisiting a story about foods created right here in Chicago.

The Curious City Scavenger Hunt: Chicago Eats Edition kicked off on August 14th (and don’t worry, it’s not too late to register). Participants get a list of clues that will lead them to nearly every one of Chicago’s 77 community areas and particular restaurants within them, recommended by members of the WBEZ staff.

The restaurants in the scavenger hunt reflect the diverse food scene that exists here in Chicago—and some of these foods were even invented right here in the city. Deep dish pizza and the Chicago style hot dog are two well-known local delicacies, but there are many more signature dishes that make Chicago’s food scene one-of-a-kind.

So we’re revisiting a story from 2015, where reporter Monica Eng takes us on her own journey across the city to find some lesser-known, signature Chicago foods.

Plus, there’s a bonus in this week’s podcast episode. If you listen carefully, you might just hear a few hints that will help your team rack up some points.

You can register your team and find more information about our very first citywide scavenger hunt here. The hunt ends September 14.

Monica Eng is a WBEZ reporter. Write to her at meng@wbez.org. Lynnea Domienik is the intern for Curious City. You can get in touch with her at ldomienik@wbez.org.