• Cooking

    Savory Feta and Ham Crostini with Philia Feta Spread

    There’s a new local guest in our refrigerator that I’ve been dying to tell you about… Minnesota Locavores, meet Philia Food’s Savory and Spicy Feta Spreads. (Since the company has been around the farmers’ market scene since 2012 there’s a chance you may have already met my new snack food friend. If so, humor me this time and read all about what I made with it!) I stumbled on these last week at Mississippi Market next to the cream cheese. Here’s how the conversation went: Me: “Hello…Umm…Excuse me? Hi there. I’m Amy and I…well I couldn’t help but notice you’re wearing the “Discover Local” tag, and…well…I’ve got to be honest,…

  • Locavore Q & A,  Other Writings

    150 Ways to Eat More Local Food

    This is it. This is the year to live better. To eat and grow local wherever you live. Need an idea to get started today? Want to try something new in the garden or the kitchen? Take the challenge to try 1 or all 150. Either way you’ll be living closer to the locavore lifestyle. Use an old road map and a protractor to draw 100, 200, and 500 mile circles around your city. Choose ingredients based on these lines to define your locavore diet. Compost. Read about 10 locavores online. You’re more likely to stick with a local lifestyle if you know you’re in good company. Join your local…

  • Canning,  Cooking,  Eating,  Local Products,  Other Writings

    September Eats {25 In-Season Items You Don’t Want to Miss}

    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 are starting to arrive now and…

  • Eating,  Other Writings

    Minnesota #17 on Locavore Index

    In the past few weeks Minnesotans have started to tip-toe into the best locavore season. Whether you use 50, 150 or statewide as your local food line, June through September are by far the easiest months to eat local in the North Star State. Minnesota’s growing local food network was recently measured against other states’, and our locavores measure up well. When the 2012 Locavore Index was released last week, Minnesotans had something to celebrate. A brand new measure introduced by New England-based Strolling of the Heifers, the rankings use farmers’ markets and CSA’s per-capita data from 2010 and 2011 to generate composite “locavore” scores for each state. Minnesota has…

  • Cooking,  Eating

    Dark Days Challenge – with or without bacon

    We’re starting the last month of the Dark Days Challenge tomorrow. Winter has come and gone so quickly. For this week of the challenge, all participants were encouraged to make a completely vegetarian meal–tricky for some of us who have relied heavily on local meats to make it through. I’ve had the vegetarian challenge date on my calendar since mid-January with the idea of trying a broccoli cheddar version of the Cream of Carrot Soup I made in week 7 of the challenge. We have bags and bags of frozen broccoli left from last fall and it’s time to start eating down the storage before the fresh veggies arrive. Fast…

  • Local Products

    Find it Local Friday: The Valentine’s Edition

    Prepare to be bombarded with lovey-dovey, full-on-prince-charming, revoltingly romantic Valentine’s Day info. This is the local food post to get you some local love next Tuesday. Welcome to Find It Local Friday: The Valentine’s Edition. For starters what says “I love you” more than: I bought my Darlin’ local because it shows I’m smart enough to read a label. It’s best to spend Valentine’s Day with someone who can read. I bought my Snuggle-Buddy local to save the planet. If we save the planet then I can be the big spoon forever. I bought my Sugar local because if we support our local economy, there’ll be more fun date-nights to try later…

  • Local Products

    Find it Local Friday: Sweet Cardamom Bread Mix

    When it comes to bread-making, there’s no one that teaches it quite like Julia: If it were only that easy… Despite having watched this video over and over and given my best shot at the gamut of yeast breads, I am still challenged to make a made-from-scratch loaf that does not resemble a masonry brick. I share Liz’s (from Carpé Season) sentiment that most of my breads could be classified as weapons. The kitchen partner has taken over all the bread duties at our house, but even he only makes it in dinner roll packages. A full loaf still evades us. That doesn’t mean I don’t continue to try… On…

  • Books,  Local Products,  Other Writings

    Find it Local Friday: NEW Resource Map and Cookbook Shelf

    I have big plans for Minnesota Locavore in 2012 with lots of new features and posts. For Find it Local Friday today, I’m releasing a rough-draft (as usual, I’m too excited to wait until the final product!) of a new Find it Local resource map and cookbook shelf. You can find both of them using the new Find it Local menu bar on the left. Part of my blogging goals in 2012 are to help more readers explore local food on their own. Sort of the “if you teach a man to fish…” idea. One of these new features is a Google map I developed of all the local producers,…

  • Cooking,  Local Products

    ELC Day #3 Mac N’ Cheese

    Today I locked my keys in my car.  Left them right on the driver’s seat in plain sight. Major blockhead move.  Even worse, I happened to be far from home and the kitchen partner, which meant I had my second tow truck experience in a month. Luckily, it only took a few minutes to fix and I was on my way.  The wallet was a little lighter, but at least I learned my lesson. By the time I got home I was craving what every American loves on after a rough day at the office:  carbohydrates and cheese. Make that mac’ and cheese for me please!   No doubt the…