It's a sad, strange time in our world today. While we all hunker down at home to keep our communities safe, The Chopping Block is dedicated to helping you in whatever way we can. With both of our locations closed for the foreseeable future, one small way we can support you is by helping you cook at home.
It's always been our mission to get the country to cook, and although our relationship must be remote during this time, we'll continue to be there for you by sharing recipes, information about how to cook from the pantries you have stocked and keeping the conversation around cooking alive. We're all feeding someone during this time of quarantine, so look at it as a time to reconnect with your kitchen and value the time you spend around the table together as family.
We are operating with a skeletal staff to keep the business running during our closure, but we will do our best to create the content that most helps you through this difficult time. Our blog, which we have been publishing on a Monday through Friday basis for almost ten years, will continue, though on a limited publishing schedule. If you are a subscriber, you can expect to continue to get email notifications whenever we publish a post. If you aren't a subscriber yet, just enter your email at the box at the top right of this page to be added to the list.
We have 118 videos on our website that can certainly help hone your cooking skills and keep you busy during quarantine. From how to work with ingredients like artichokes to how to make some of our favorite comfort foods like Mac n' Cheese, our Owner/Chef Shelley Young shows you tips and tricks to be successful in these videos.
If you haven't yet joined our private Facebook group, now is the time to do so. Although we'll continue to post to all of our social channels during this time, our group is where we can best support each other through conversations. Shelley has offered to help you put together meal ideas based on what you have in your fridge, freezer and pantry. When we are trying to limit trips to the grocery store and when stores have limited stock, we know it's possible you may open the fridge one day and be at a loss to know what to do with what you have. And we want all of our members' input too! Let's all band together to help one another be creative with our cooking during this time.
If Instagram is more your jam, we'll be there supporting you too. Share your cooking photos on Instagram, tag us @the_chopping_block and use the hashtag #tcbcookingclub. By sharing, we are showing support for each other and providing inspiration for the kitchen.
Fun fact! Did you know that the show Chopped on Food Network has origins related to The Chopping Block? We had a relationship with a LGBTQ-rights organization called GenderPAC (the Gender Public Advocacy Coalition) while it was in existence from 1995 to 2009. Shelley participated in and hosted several events in which a mystery basket of ingredients was used in competitions among chefs. Chopped Host Ted Allen was also involved with the group. Here's he and Shelley judging a competition in our kitchen:
This is an unusual and difficult time for small businesses throughout Chicago and across our nation. Please consider helping your community by supporting your favorite local businesses. Though our doors are closed, you can still purchase a gift card online here. Once we reopen for business, you'll be ready to get cooking again with your gift card in hand!
We are so proud of the way the hospitality industry is coming together in this time of the COVID-19 crisis. Join the #rallyforrestaurants movement by buying a gift card (or 5), and challenge your friends to do the same. We are included in the list.
While we aren't able to offer takeout at our business, we support our colleagues with the #takeoutchicago challenge. If you are able, take the challenge to support Chicago's restaurants and bars. Dining at a Distance has composed a list of local restaurants that are offering delivery, curbside pick-up, and takeout. Use it to find what your favorites are able to do during the lockdown of Chicago’s restaurants and bars during COVID-19. We're all in this together!
Take good care of yourselves and each other.