Chewing the Fat-logo

Chewing the Fat

Chicago Public Media

More Information


Chicago, IL






CTF Ep 54 Last Meal

Louisa Chu and Monica Eng dedicate this series finale of Chewing the Fat, Louisa's late dog & companion Kiba Chu, Monica talks pig roasts w/ Jack Hitt and Louisa turns carrots into roast pork-ishness. What? This may be their last CTF meal but find their new "Chewing" podcast at, Thank you!


CTF Ep 53 Do or Diet: David Ludwig and Dawn Lerman talk about losing that gut

Do or Diet: The Chewing the Fat ladies are back hearing from Dr. David Ludwig about his bestseller “Always Hungry” on the best way to finally lose that gut forever. Author Dawn Lerman talks about growing up the daughter of a 450 pound Don Draper who was always trying the food he advertised. And Louisa dares Monica to eat a shaggy piece of old chicken…but will she? Moving forward, you can find us in our new home,


BONUS White Heat 25, Legendary Chef Marco Pierre White (NEW interview)

A Chewing the Fat BONUS! In an all-new interview, hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng talk to legendary chef Marco Pierre White on the release of "White Heat 25," the 25th anniversary edition of the book that inspired Anthony Bourdain and generations of cooks. Chef White tells all about Gordon Ramsay, Hot Doug’s, and much more. (photo: Marco Pierre White by Bob Carlos Clarke for the book cover of "White Heat 25")


CTF Ep 52 Pleasure: Marco Pierre White, ortolan and eating with your hands

At what price pleasure? On the latest Chewing the Fat, it is the Pleasure episode. Hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng talk to the original so-called bad boy chef Marco Pierre White, about the pain that made him give up his three Michelin stars. And Paris-based correspondent for The New York Times Liz Alderman talks about her story on the attempt to revive the tradition of the ortolan, the tiny songbird eaten with a napkin over the diner’s head, to hide one’s face from God. Plus Maria Rodale...


CTF Ep 51 Food and Antibiotics: The butcher, the animal caretaker and the documentary filmmaker

Hard pill to swallow? Chewing the Fat examines our pairing of food & antibiotics. Hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng talk to "Resistance" filmmaker Michael Graziano about the threat of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, National Pork Producers Council Chief Veterinarian Dr. Liz Wagstrom about antibiotics and livestock, and Eataly butcher Daniel Roderfeld on their meat standards. Then Monica brings Louisa a Never Ever wild boar sausage, but what is it, and Will She Eat It? Twitter: @ChuEngFat...


CTF Ep 48 Carnivore: Author Ted Genoways, blogger Hank Shaw, and deer hunting

Chewing the Fat gets to the matter of meat in this Carnivore episode. Co-hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng talk to Ted Genoways about his new book The Chain: Farm Factory and the Fate of our Food. And award-winning Hunter Angler Gardener and Cook blogger Hank Shaw about the ethics of harvesting your own meat. And Monica goes into the wild to hunt deer. Twitter: @ChuEngFat @louisachu @monicaeng (Photo by Louisa Chu / Venison ribs in buffalo chili at the 2013 Harvard Sportsman's Club Wild Game...


CTF Ep 47: Diet

Happy New Year from Chewing the Fat! In this Diet episode hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng disagree on a few new trends, and discuss fads and facts. They talk alkaline diet with Donald Hayes; and the new book Eat Bacon, Don’t Jog with author Grant Petersen. Then Louisa surprises Monica with the new White Castle Veggie Slider, but Will She Eat It? Twitter: @ChuEngFat @louisachu @monicaeng (Photo by Louisa Chu / New Veggie Slider with Ranch dressing, honey mustard, and “sweet Thai” sauces at...


CTF Ep 46: Drinks, the artistry of cocktails with barman-author Greg Seider, & some rare teas

Happy New Year from Chewing the Fat! Hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng talk health conscious cocktails with Manhattan Cricket Club owner Greg Seider, author of the new book "Alchemy in a Glass." And Louisa invites Rare Tea Cellar owner Rodrick Markus to mix his take on a classic 50 / 50 Martini for cocktail hater Monica... but Will She Drink It? Twitter: @ChuEngFat @louisachu @monicaeng (Photo by Louisa Chu | 50/50 Martini cocktails by Rare Tea Cellar owner Rodrick Markus)


CTF Ep 45: Alaska, holidays, bears in your garden and other cold-weather food gathering and eats

Chewing the Fat goes north to the future: Alaska! Hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng explore the final frontier of food. Louisa shares a visit to a tiny town CSA farmed by artist Terry Kennedy. Then they talk to Nic Mink, professor and founder of CSF (Community Supported Fishery) Sitka Salmon Shares. And Nerdette podcast co-host and Alaskan Greta Johnsen joins CTF for a surprise ingredient just in time for the holidays... but Will She Eat It? Twitter: @ChuEngFat @louisachu @monicaeng (Photo...


CTF Ep 44: Manners

This week on Chewing the Fat, let’s mind our Manners. Co-hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng hear how Michelin starred chef / partner Bruce Sherman of North Pond restaurant gives and takes complaints. Then Monica and Louisa dine with Chicago’s legendary Breakfast Queen, chef / author Ina Pinkney and restaurateur Dan Rosenthal who share their expert etiquette tips. Plus Vietnamese-American chef / partner Thai Dang of Embeya restaurant shares his most shocking manners moment. Plus Louisa and...


CTF Ep 42: Vegging In w/ Mark Bittman, Yotam Ottolenghi and Karen Page

After years of vegging out we think it's time to Veg In on this fresh episode of Chewing the Fat. Co-hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng talk to veggie-loving chef and cookbook author Yotam Ottolenghi; Vegetarian Flavor Bible author Karen Page on her veg conversion; plus New York Times food writer and opinion guy Mark Bittman explains why he's a Vegan Before 6pm. Twitter: @ChuEngFat @louisachu @monicaeng (Photo by Louisa Chu / Vegetarian chili with sour cream by Mare Swallow at Soup & Bread &...


CTF Ep 41: Thanksgiving with Mario Batali, Marcus Samuelsson, Dorie Greensp

Happy Thanksgiving from the Chewing the Fat family, and we’re bringing our Season Four premiere episode! Co-hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng serve main dish conversations with chef Marcus Samuelsson, The Sporkful’s Dan Pashman, plus FOCTF Brian Babylon makes us his new crockpot creation but... Will She Eat It?! Plus a celebrity chef Friendsgiving with Mario Batali, Dorie Greenspan, Prune chef / owner Gabrielle Hamilton, and best-selling Vegetarian Flavor Bible author Karen Page! Twitter:...


CTF Ep 38: Food as Medicine: Organic gardening DJ, a wonder spice & food in

Chewing the Fat co-hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng go off their meds in this week’s Food as Medicine episode. Monica talks to hip hop artist and OG, as in organic gardener, DJ Cavem, and author of "Turmeric: Great Recipes Featuring the Wonder Spice that Fights Inflammation and Protects Against Disease," Colleen Sen. Sen then challenges Louisa to taste raw turmeric, but Will She Eat It? Plus modern day medicine woman Dr. Geeta Maker-Clark pays a house call, bearing roasted broccoli and raw...


CTF Ep 34: Super Markets

Yes, there’s destination dining, but destination markets? Chewing the Fat co-hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng shop the aisles in this week’s Super Markets episode. Monica goes behind the scenes at ALDI US HQ. And they visit Louisa’s own local small but super market, The Dill Pickle, surprisingly Chicago’s only food co-op to date. Plus they talk favorite markets worldwide with expert Robyn Eckhardt, the blogger behind Eating Asia, on location in Turkey researching her upcoming book. Plus the...


CTF Ep 33: Music

Chefs are the new rock stars, and rock stars want to be chefs? Chewing the Fat co-hosts Louisa Chu and Monica Eng ask the experts in this week’s Music episode. Including Sound Opinions co-hosts Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis, backstage at their End of Summer BBQ on the WBEZ terrace. And from epic burger banger Kuma’s Corner, chef David Bacso on what’s metal and not. Plus Will She Eat It? guests Robin Linn and Jason Saldanha, producers of Sound Ops, discuss how to pair food and music, but will...


CTF Ep 31: Icy

Why should you spend double digits on a pint of ice cream? Jeni of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams tells us why, in loving detail. We also take a tour of Chicago’s coolest delicacies, including Mario’s Italian Lemonade. Finally, we bite into the cold, spicy, mango treats served at Mexican neverias. These places inspire Louisa make a Honey Bun sundae for Monica, but Will She Eat It? Find out on the Icy episode of Chewing the Fat!


CTF Ep 26 Cookout

Monica and Louisa speak with experts, and offer some tips on grilling. (Photo: Flickr/Christopher Craig)


CTF Ep 24 Mixed Grill: Is Bill Kurtis’ hot dog really a health food?

This week we mix it up with anchorman, and sometimes judge & scorekeeper of NPR/WBEZ's "Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!" Bill Kurtis. He talks about his delicious and nutritious Tall Grass beef franks. Plus, we grill “Gulp” author Mary Roach about the benefits of juicing and extreme chewing. And we learn the secrets of eating like a movie star with actor John Turturro who wrote, stars and directs the new movie “Fading Gigolo.”


BONUS: John Turturro on how to eat like a movie star

We ambushed actor John Turturro when he stopped by WBEZ for a real interview. We talk about a key fish scene in his new movie “Fading Gigolo,” and the secret to eating professionally in the movies. (Photo: John Turturro in scene from 'Fading Gigolo.')


Memories of local sustainable Chicago gefilte fish

WBEZ volunteer Ed Kramer remembers fishing for passover ingredients near Navy Pier as a Chicago kid growing up in the 1930s. The resulting gefilte fish created lasting culinary memories.


See More