25: Michigan Reuben Kraut and cole slaw plus hand-carved roasted turkey breast take this little number (almost) over the top. Mary Ann’s Take Out, 1530 U.S. 31 S., charlevoix, 231-237-9700.
26: Black Angus Burger A crazy-good, sizzling cheddar burger on crusty, blue cheese–marbled baguette for $5.99. Hard Luck Café owner Joe Pellar says it’s not on the regular menu, but, if you want it, call the day before (ask for J.P.), and he’ll pick up the fresh baked baguettes at Bay Bread in the morning on his way to work. Hard Luck Cafe, 810 E. Front St., Traverse City, 231-946-1991.
27: Intriguing Ice Creams
Chef Scott Schornak churns small batches of his beguiling ice cream flavors to sell in the to-go freezer at Feast Market. The delicate, fresh-tasting concoctions work all on their own, or try the basil ice cream with sliced tree-ripe peaches, the salt-and-pepper ice cream sandwiched between gingersnaps, or how ’bout the chocolate chipotle in a dish with a warm cinnamon-sugar doughnut? Feast Market & Café, 410 Howard St., Petoskey, 231-439-9400.
Portabella Ravioli with Acorn Squash Cream Sauce
28: Portabella Ravioli With Acorn Squash Cream SauceChef Tom Reay was inspired by the Italians’ love of squashes, nuts and mushrooms for this dish, which stars a very simple sauce made with roasted acorn squash, cream, nutmeg and toasted pecans. Funistrada, 4566 Macfarlane, Burdickville, 231-334-3900.
29: Asian Fish
Rub Lori LaClair (of Lori’s Salsa del Sol fame) mixed up this endlessly versatile rub with roasted sesame seeds, lemon peel, parsley, sea salt, garlic, raw sugar and ginger. The concoction dazzles as the crust on juicy chicken breast and ahi tuna on the grill, or dashed across a bowl of bright green beans. Find LaClair at the T.C. farmers market, or check her website for gourmet shops that carry her rubs. salsaofthesun.net.
30: Cookie Dough Frosted Brownie A nice lady in Cadillac brought brownies slathered with a layer of raw chocolate-chip-cookie dough to a church gathering, giving Blue Heron Café chef-owner Brian Williams the dream to scheme up a dense, chewy brownie with cookie dough (made, brilliantly, without egg) as frosting. Why did we not think of that? Blue Heron Café and Bakery, 304 N. Mitchell St., Cadillac, 231-775-5461.
31: Fried Chicken Salad The combination of a crunchy buttermilk fried chicken breast, sharp cheddar, radishes, cucumber, black-eyed pea relish, pickled carrots and a sousing of honey jalapeño dressing makes for a very comforting dish. Pearl’s New Orleans Kitchen, 617 Ames St., 231-264-0530.
32: Kraut Dogs Can eating a hot dog be an ethereal experience? When it’s a sauerkraut-laced homemade link from Bunting’s, warm out of the smoker (try weekends, early afternoon), yes. Bunting’s Cedar Market, 9054 Kasson, Cedar, 231-228-7460.