Wagyu fat-drizzled chicken gyoza with black truffles
Wagyu fat-drizzled chicken gyoza with black truffles Credit: Kelly Ijichi

“Mom” is the nickname of the deep fryer at the Kedzie Inn,* so it’s a delicious coincidence that Kelly Ijichi of Mom’s Chicago will be on the baskets, dunking barbecued eel croquettes, chicken gyoza, and shrimp cutlets at the next Monday Night Foodball, the Reader’s weekly chef pop-up series.

“The most beautiful thing for us is the deep fryer,” says Ijichi, who currently has a standing Saturday residency at Konbini and Kanpai, and has teamed up with Joey Pham, aka Flavor Supreme, for a tight menu of hot, crispy bar snacks.

“We wanted things that are small, that people could reach for and just hit those dopamine receptors,” says Pham, in a departure from the dreamy, dazzling cakes they’re known for.

Credit: @dear_maxie

Ijichi and Pham have worked together on a handful of Monday Snack Gathering collaborations that, to date, have been fryerless, and resultingly, more or less portable. But that’s the great wonder of MNF, where nimble, itinerant chefs get a chance to show with they can do a la minute. And that’s why my best advice to you is to stick around and enjoy your croquettes and wagyu fat-drizzled chicken gyoza hot and fresh from the fryer. You’re not really gonna go for that black truffle supplement and carry it home in a Styrofoam coffin, are you? Of course not. Same goes for the ebi katsu sando served on Ijichi’s offering to the cult of the Bob Chinn’s garlic roll. Char-grilled Chinese broccoli is your life preserver, though there will be a handful of sweets available—mochi, donut holes, cake cups—to tip the balance.

Credit: @dear_maxie

No preorders for this one, friends. Walk in with cash or Venmo capabilities and get it hot and sizzling—the way it’s meant to be—on Monday, March 14, starting at 7 PM until it’s all gone.

This is part one of a two-week MNF stand for Pham, by the way; they’re returning on March 21 with their Snackette comrades Lorraine Nguyen, (@lolo_agogo) and Roshelley Mayén (@juanitasbebidas). See the full schedule below.

Kedzie Inn
4100 N. Kedzie
(773) 293-6368

*That’s what I call it anyway, at last call, when I’m crawling toward the kitchen on all fours, begging for chicken wings.