For the record, I’m writing this from my favorite garden view: Can you believe we’re finally getting to summertime? Last weekend we we’re basking in all this sunshine at the 2014 Minnesota Cheese Festival. The weather was terrific at the State Fairgrounds and the vendors even better.  Picture my perfect Saturday morning: sunshine and rows and rows of cheeses on toothpicks. I kept asking Greg to pinch me. Our tickets got us access to more than 100 cheeses from Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, and Illinois, as well as a chance to visit with some familiar local food favorites like Slow Food MN and Minnesota Cooks. MyRead More →

If you’re anything like me this first week of Daylight Savings Time was brutal. Pair that with giving up all-things social media until Easter and I’m ready for a weekend without the alarm clock and with a whole lot of R&R. Although I go for a bold red wine at the end of most hectic weeks, lately my brain has been all about barley and hops. I think this kind of week calls for a nice cold beer, don’t you think? To say craft brewing in Minnesota has exploded in the past five years is an understatement. The Twin Cities bar scene wouldn’t be theRead More →

Follow my blog with Bloglovin t-minus 7 days to finish your holiday shopping. Whether it’s hostess gifts, the stocking stuffers for the bowling team or that perfect surprise for your special someone, nothing says ‘Merry Christmas’ like a Minnesota-made gift. I bet you’ve heard this before, but MN2020, an organization dedicated to economic development in Minnesota reports “When you spend $1 at a local independent business, an average of 68 cents is re-circulated into the local economy.  In contrast, when you spend $1 at a national chain, only about 43 cents stays at home.” Locally made gifts say “I didn’t wander around the mall forRead More →

5 days left to go before Christmas. Are you ready? This morning I’m finishing up the last of my shopping. One final exchange and one d.i.y. project. If you’re still looking for that last-minute perfect holiday gift–or if you’re just getting started on your shopping–I’m recommending you check out these locavore gift guides. They’re from some of my favorite blogs and Minnesota-grown websites. Tons of ideas to help you wrap up the last of your holiday buying! The Splendid Table’s Lynne Rossetto Kasper recommends local, Minnesota-made artisan chocolates for Christmas. If cookbooks are on your list, I recommend you check out Simple Good and Tasty’s 2012Read 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 →

So glad it’s the long weekend. My brother-in-law and his girlfriend are coming to stay with us for the holiday weekend. We’ll be wandering around the State Fair together and you can bet cheese curds will be involved! Last year during fair week I posted my State Fair Strawberry Shake inspired by my Dairy Building favorite. This year the raspberry sundae has been at the top of my list. Although I couldn’t sneak to the fair every day this week to have an extra treat, I did make some raspberry frozen yogurt at home to carry me over until tomorrow’s visit. Let’s be honest…my frozen yogurtRead More →

We may all be roasted, toasted, and wilted in this heat but there’s one happy camper in Minnesota right now: the blueberry crop. With all the warm weather, blueberry season has started in the Metro and pick-your-own locations are waiting for anyone willing to brave the muggy mess we’re in. The kitchen partner and I will be celebrating our 4th of July holiday with cool vanilla ice cream topped with fresh local berries. Search Pinterest for red, white, and blue desserts if you need some patriotic inspiration of your own! Here’s a re-post of Find it Local Friday: Blueberries from last season with all theRead More →

Strawberry season has arrived Minnesota. Bet you weren’t expecting it this early! Picking started almost a full two weeks ahead of last year and average seasons. Today the kitchen partner and I are processing a flat of berries from our picking on the weekend. It’s a much cooler day to be making jam than yesterday! If you’d like to get in on the short berry season (3-4 weeks depending on weather), it’s best to pick this week or next. With the heat we’ve had, berries will ripen quickly and be less stable once picked. Here’s info from a Find it Local Friday: Strawberry Post fromRead More →

Taking a break from spinach today to help announce the release of the 2012 Minnesota Grown Directory. It’s one of my favorite days of the year and a terrific way to kick of the summer growing season. Why is the Minnesota Grown Directory worth a Find it Local Friday of its own? It’s a one-stop shop for answers to all your locavore questions: How can I be a Minnesota Locavore? Listings for 945 sources for locally-grown food and products around the state. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture’s comprehensive list can help you find whatever your locavore heart desires. How do I eat local on theRead More →