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Starting Friday and continuing through Sunday is the Southern Foodways Alliance's Camp Chicago: An Up South Expedition, a "day camp" including presentations, lunch at West Town Tavern, and catfish 'n' blues at the Hideout on Saturday. There'll be side trips to sample south-side barbecue, bourbon, mother-in-law sandwiches, and soul food; click here for a complete schedule or here to register. $85, plus $45-$55 for each side trip.
Raghavan Iyer, author of the cookbook 660 Curries, presents Curried Culinary History, covering 6,000 years of spices in India, Saturday at 10 at the Chicago History Museum. There will also be a sampling of several of Iyer’s curries ($5; 708-788-0338 or email@example.com). Afterward he’ll be at Marigold for a 12:30 PM book signing and four-course lunch with wine pairings; among the dishes are kadhai paneer with spring vegetables and lamb in a Kashmiri curry ($65).
The free weekly wine tasting at the Logan Square location of Provenance Food & Wine (2528 N. California, 773-384-0699), Saturday from 3 to 6 PM, pairs treats from Tinycakes with Tobin James Liquid Love (a late-harvest zinfandel), sparkling wine, and a couple of nondessert wines. Baker Stephanie Merello, who sells her creations at the Logan Square Farmers’ Market, will be offering individually sized brownies, cheesecake, dark chocolate pistachio biscotti, and double chocolate hazelnut cookies.
Saturday and Sunday from 11 AM to closing time (3 AM Sat, 2 AM Sun; food served until 10 PM) is the fifth annual all-you-can-eat "Rockin' Crawfish Boil" at Blue Bayou, featuring New Orleans-style jambalaya, gumbo, corn bread, Abita beer (brewed in Louisiana), and, of course, crawfish--shipped in live from New Orleans. There'll be music from Hurricane Gumbo (4 PM Sat), the Flood Brothers (9 PM Sat), the Cook County Jazz Commission (noon Sun), and Forte (8 PM Sun), as well as a French Quarter burlesque show by Michelle L'Amour (11 PM Sun). $25 per day.
Less than two blocks from Blue Bayou's celebration, on Sunday starting at noon Toons Bar & Grill will serve up red beans and rice, muffulettas, and andouille at its all-you-can-eat crawfish boil, now in its ninth year. It’ll last as long as 750 pounds of crawfish do, or until the bar closes at 2 AM; Abita Amber beer is on special for $3.50 a pint all day. $25.