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Food and health podcast by Chicago Tribune Food & Dining reporter Louisa Chu and WBEZ Food & Health reporter Monica Eng.

Weekly hand curated podcast episodes for learning

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The best episodes ranked using user listens.

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Episode 6: Nostalgia & Burt’s Pizza

How does memory affect our relationship with food? Monica chews it over with chefs Sam Kass, Gale Gand, Dave Beran, Ming Tsai,and Nathalie DuPree. Louisa talks pizza memories with Burt’s Pizza founder Burt Katz. And psychiatrist Drew Ramsey tells us how to eat for optimal brain and mental health. Finally, Louisa brings Monica and Iris twists on nostalgic treats from their Chinese childhoods—but will they eat them? Press play to find out. (Photo: Burt's Place pizza by Louisa Chu)

1hr 6mins

22 Apr 2016

Rank #1

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Episode 39: Lunar New Year

Happy Year of the Dog! Monica investigates shocking immigration history behind Chinese chop suey restaurants plus dine and dance cafes. Louisa offers Chinese New Year Kitchen God food and drink, plus treats for furry surprise guests, but Will They Eat It?


17 Feb 2018

Rank #2

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Episode 69: Ramen, okonomiyaki, how to shop for Japanese groceries

Monica Eng visits Mitsuwa Marketplace to learn how to shop for Japanese groceries. Yoshi's Cafe owner Nobuko Katsumura teaches her how to eat ramen. Louisa Chu talks to Gaijin owners about okonomiyaki. Monica dares Louisa to taste cheese flavored fish sausage, but Will She Eat It?

1hr 7mins

12 Nov 2019

Rank #3

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Episode 31: Restaurant critic Phil Vettel, plus world’s healthiest and worst foods?

Monica learns all about lentils, world’s healthiest food? She and Louisa lunch with veteran Chicago Tribune restaurant critic and pal Phil Vettel. Dessert is 7-Eleven 90th anniversary Birthday Cake Snack Pie, but Will They Eat It?


4 Aug 2017

Rank #4

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Episode 44: Kimbal Musk, Beyond Meat, Lifeway Kefir

Louisa talks to tech and food entrepreneur Kimbal Musk. Then she and Monica talk to Lifeway CEO and "The Kefir Cookbook" author Julie Smolansky. Plus new Beyond Meat sausages and head cheese lunch meat, but Will They Eat It?

1hr 3mins

30 Apr 2018

Rank #5

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Episode 70: Thanksgiving & Baking


26 Nov 2019

Rank #6

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Episode 57: Best and Worst of the Year

1hr 12mins

28 Dec 2018

Rank #7

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Episode 59: Pizza and Ship Shape


18 Feb 2019

Rank #8

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Episode 32: Despacito Jibarito, Michelin Hong Kong Dive

Monica takes us to Hong Kong’s Michelin starred dive Tim Ho Wan. Louisa invites her to surprisingly popular Chicago shop Jibaritos y Mas. Then they welcome Chewing superfan (Monica’s mom) to taste a blood sausage jibarito, but Will She Eat It?


25 Aug 2017

Rank #9

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Episode 35: Happy and Italian

This week Monica and Louisa serve up recipes for happiness. Louisa tries to coax well-loved recipes out of Italian cooks at Taste of Melrose Park, while Monica talks to beloved Chicago restaurateur Jason Chan about positivity, sushi and their secret connection. Then Monica drives out to the inaugural Laughter Yoga conference to talk to guru Madan Kataria about the power of laughter. If you want to smile click play!


20 Oct 2017

Rank #10

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Episode 43: Acid Trip, Salad Club, & Herbal Jelly


16 Apr 2018

Rank #11

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Episode 42: Cheezborgers and Makeovers

Louisa talks to Billy Goat Tavern owner about secret menu cheezborger. Monica talks to Hon Kee BBQ owner about extreme glamour makeover. Then back to the Goat for an Obama burger tasting plus a surprise fried wiener ball, but Will She Eat It?


30 Mar 2018

Rank #12

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Episode 71: Holiday Feasts and Drink

Monica Eng talks about surprising American story behind Italian Christmas Feast of the Seven Fishes with filmmaker Robert Tinnell. Louisa Chu talks about best new book "Last Call: Bartenders on Their Final Drink and the Wisdom and Rituals of Closing Time" with author Brad Thomas Parsons. Louisa and Monica visit world's largest Starbucks with Chicago Malort cocktail, but Will They Drink It?


21 Dec 2019

Rank #13

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Episode 68: Episode 68: Patel Brothers, Superkhana, Thattu, best sustainable diet

Louisa Chu visits newest Patel Brothers, the largest Indian grocery chain in North America. Monica Eng talks to a Johns Hopkins researcher about the best diet to save the planet. Louisa learns sweet loves stories behind biscuit desserts at Superkhana International and Thattu. Monica dares her to eat spicy fish roe potato chips, but Will She Eat It?

1hr 4mins

28 Oct 2019

Rank #14

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Episode 33: Trash Tiki Drinks & Hong Kong Foodie Customs

Monica talks strange Hong Kong food customs and craft beer pairings. Louisa talks low-waste Trash Tiki. Then smoking tiki cocktails, but Will They Drink It?


22 Sep 2017

Rank #15

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Episode 30: Street Food & Lemon Cake


18 Jul 2017

Rank #16

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Episode 46: Big Stars with Zooey Deschanel, Jose Andres, and more


28 May 2018

Rank #17

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Episode 26: Food Trucks, Immigrant Food, and a Sandwich Surprise

In this episode of the Chewing food and health podcast, Louisa Chu welcomes fellow Chicago Tribune Food and Dining reporter Nick Kindelsperger, aka Taco Nick, as a guest co-host, while Monica Eng is off writing her debut book on magical dumplings. First, Louisa and Nick visit food trucks, licensed and not, to investigate for a new segment, We Don’t Get It. Then they invite colleague Joseph Hernandez to discuss immigrant food. And Nick brings a pair of peculiar South Side Chicago sandwiches, the sweet steak and Jim Shoe, aka Gym Shoe, but Will We Eat It? (Photo: Gym Shoe sandwich by Southtown Sub)


19 May 2017

Rank #18

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Episode 49: Self Care Through Food


23 Aug 2018

Rank #19