I think we’re having our first true Minnesota winter in a long time. Days so cold I cross my fingers and crunch one eye in hopes the car starts. Mornings where I  wake up to a ground again covered in white and I run to the television in hopes of a 2 hour delay from work. (Still waiting SPPS…) I’m a winter-freak. I love every part of it, with the exception of slow traffic. Snowshoeing. Skiing. Extra large snowbanks. All this winter stuff we’ve got going on this year is spectacular. (I’ve been told this enthusiasm is because I’ve never actually had to pick upRead 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 →

Do you have a happy place? You know, somewhere you can visit a hundred times and always regret having to go home. You regularly catch yourself day dreaming about going there when you’re stuck in traffic or having a bad day at work. The place that “fills your bucket.” Since our first trip nearly 5 years ago the North Shore has been my happy place. I love Duluth and beg the kitchen partner to buy me a house there all the time. We try to make it up there 3-4 times every year–to relax, get away from the city noise, and take in Lake Superior.Read More →

Welcome to November! It’s shaping up to be a busy month around here. I’ve got guest posts planned, knee-deep in an online graduate course, and finally committed to participate in National Novel Writing Month (Have you heard about NaNoWriMo?). November 2012 is the month I’m finally going to take the book idea that’s been sloshing around in my brain all year and spew it on paper. NaNoWriMo encourages writers to hit the 50,000 word mark in 30 days. Kate in the Kitchen inspired me last year with her November blog series so much that I’m already approaching the 1,000 word mark. Keep checking back this monthRead More →

The kitchen partner and I snuck up to Nowthen yesterday to enjoy the fall sunshine and some Minnesota wines. Goose Lake Farm and Winery was the first winery we visited when we moved to Minnesota way back when. If you live in or visit the Twin Cities area, be sure to make Goose Lake one of the stops your list. With more than 40 different wines to choose from (including a sparkling rosé I could have for brunch, lunch, dinner…or all three!) there’s lots get excited about. The drive is about 50 minutes from downtown Saint Paul, perfect for a sunny Fall afternoon. When youRead 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 →

The kitchen partner and I had a fantastic weekend. I canned 25 pounds of tomatoes for mid-winter and he had some quality time to work on his MBA application. Yesterday, our friends Simon from 20Food.net and his girlfriend Anya asked us to tag along raspberry picking. We headed to Lorence’s Berry Farm in Northfield, MN (about 40 miles south of St. Paul) for a gorgeous afternoon of picking followed by a picnic of fresh local food. Did I mention how cool my friends are? Keep your eyes out for more raspberry recipes here this week and a list of local patches for pick your ownRead 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 →