Minnesota strawberry season opened this week and the berries are begging to be picked. This morning I stopped out to Afton Apple Orchard in Afton, Minnesota and picked 30 pounds of strawberries for freezer jam, pies and fresh eating. The berries are ripe and juicy from the rain we’ve had this year.  There’s nothing that says “Hello Summer” like a morning in the berry patch followed by an afternoon in the kitchen making jam. Here’s a quick video update of my day today and a 3 ingredient recipe for your own strawberry freezer jam: Strawberry Freezer Jam – Minnesota Locavore from Amy Sippl on Vimeo.Read More →

This recipe for Homemade Roasted Red Peppers is the fifth post in the 2013 Eat Local America! Challenge series. Each year Minnesota co-ops celebrate the bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables available in August by promoting a month of local eating. Minnesota Locavore and readers around the state are taking the challenge to eat meals made from local ingredients. Stop back all month long for recipes, local products and tips for jump starting your month of local food. One of the highlights of my Eat Local America Challenge every year is to find new ways to make the ingredients I love from scratch. Eating localRead More →

Today is 2013 National Can It Forward Day. Hosted by Ball Home Preserving, Can It Forward Day promotes and educates about canning and home preserving. This week I had the chance to meet with the MOMS club of Richfield/Southeast Minneapolis for my own canning event. I shared the basics of canning tomatoes while my friend Melanie and her great group of Mom friends hung out with their kiddos for the morning. In honor of Can It Forward Day, today I’m sharing some photos from the Mom’s club event and a re-post of my Simple Good and Tasty “How to Host a Home Canning Party” postRead More →

Remember these? All those beautiful jars of tomatoes you picked, peeled, and packed this summer? They’re ready to come off the pantry shelves and into tonight’s dinner. January is the month where most locavores start eating down the freezer, cold storage, and pantry shelves in preparation for spring. I know, I haven’t lost my mind. It’s still January. My friends all roll their eyes at me, but I’m seriously counting the days! Once we’re past the holidays, the garden starts calling! My favorite way to think spring in the middle of January is to make a meal from ingredients I stored from last year’s growingRead More →

September is one of the best seasons for locavores. The peak summer vegetables are available by the bushel and the early fall crops are just beginning to ripen. Few other months offer more variety and possibility in Minnesota. Don’t wait another week to visit the farmers’ market or search the Minnesota Grown directory for a local grower. Here’s the A-Z list of fruits and vegetables in season right now: #1 Apples - Minnesota apple season came early this year because of heat, dry weather and early spring blossoms. Early varieties like State Fair and Duchess have been available for a few weeks. Sweet Sixteen and Honeycrisp areRead More →

When it comes to making messes in the kitchen, I am The Queen of Disarray. Sometimes the kitchen partner will come home to layers of dirty dishes and pans, flour in my hair and down the front of my apron, and vegetable peelings on the floor where I seemed to have missed the garbage can every time. “Whatcha up to?” he’ll ask, trying not to laugh at my disaster. “Oh, just trying out this new thing I saw on Pinterest,” I’ll answer back and continue on my merry mess-making. He grabs a dish towel and starts trailing behind me. The guy is a saint forRead More →

Last July and August you and I shared a locavore moment every few days. This summer. Not so much. Despite my best intentions (and my wild attempts at planning), the past few months have been the complete opposite. New work responsibilities, a ton of weddings and events, and a major “lose all that local food weight you’ve added to your rear-end” campaign turned this summer from lazy days into some of the longest to-do lists of my life. By last week Friday, I hadn’t blogged in over a week. I was behind on hours at work, behind on writing assignments but loathing the thought of doing either. When weRead More →

A secret about me: I love the Olympics. Every few years I spend 2 weeks glued to the television in pure, inspired bliss. Slurping up every medal event and every moment of Bob Costas. I remember watching Shannon Miller and the USA women’s gymnastics team compete in ’96 and then prance down our narrow hallway to my own gold-medal routine. I would beg to stay up late to see bobsledders, skiers, and snowboarding. For two weeks there’d be no fighting over the remote, no turning the channel for cartoons. Everyone in the family curled up in the living room for the best competition the worldRead More →

I promised earlier this week that I’d been working on some rock-your-socks off recipes to post this week. Today it’s a cranberry apple jam posted on Simple Good and Tasty. Cranberry and apple have been my go-to friends this season.  First the donuts.  Today it’s jam.  You can bet I’ll be making Liz’s crumble top pie too. I love the combination of sweet and tangy with cinnamon swirled in.  It reminds me of the candle section during the holidays. Back to the jam… Earlier this month I was given the opportunity to begin writing posts for Simple Good and Tasty, a Minnesota-based food blog focused onRead More →