This post is part of the guest series “Locavore Q & A“.Â Â Whether a beginning cook in the kitchen or a seasoned local farmer, we all have different motivations for choosing a locavore lifestyle. EachÂ post highlights a different perspective on local food. Today’s post was written by Simon Helgeson, a friend of the kitchen partner and I who also writes at 20Food.net. Simon is one of my favorite people to cook/dine with. He has great stories about cooking, growing, and traveling in the United States and in South America. So glad he’s able to answer some locavore questions for us!
Eating local means creating better habits, getting creative, and filling your life with the joys of food you can feel good about. Luckily, the Twin Cities and farmers are making it easier than ever to find high quality, healthy, sustainable food without going out of your way. Thatâ€™s why summer is a great time to make local eating a way of life.
Q: Which farmers’ market do you shop at and what are your tips for successful market trips?
A:Â One of the great incentives for eating local is to make grocery-shopping fun. For me, that means visiting the Saint Paul downtown market on Saturday or Sunday morning. Last year I made the trip extra fun by biking to the market. When I arrive, quickly survey all the booths to see what is for sale. Every week brings something different to the table. I think about how I might utilize the available produce to make at least a couple different meals and buy accordingly. I try to only plan a few meals for the week ahead, because inevitably life will happen, and that perfect plan for cooking a huge bag of produce will fall apart. Resist the temptation to buy more than you will have time and energy to prepare. For a directory of local farmer’s markets try checking out the Simple Good and Tasty directory.
Q: What are other ways new or interested locavores can be more involved and engaged in the community?
Q: What are your suggestions for new locavores in the kitchen? What about preserving and canning?
When the summer heat turns up I will seek out some fresh Minnesota dairy from my local co-op to make a batch of delicious homemade ice cream. A good ice cream maker can be found for less than $50 and the reward of a fresh ice cream loaded with the seasonâ€™s best fruit is definitely worth the cost and effort. For directions check out my Strawberry Angel Food Cake Ice Cream post or Amyâ€™s Vanilla Ice CreamÂ post.