• Books,  Eating,  Local Products

    2014 Minnesota Grown Directory Now Available

    The 2014-2015 Minnesota Grown Directory is now available!!! If you have yet to get your hands on a copy, this is the gold-standard text for anyone eating and growing local in Minnesota. With more than 978 entries, it’s the largest guidebook to farms, farmers markets, orchards and other vendors around the state. I’ve used the Minnesota Grown directory both online and in print to find everything we need, A-Z.  From wineries to winter farmers markets, from alpacas to elderberries if it’s Minnesota Grown it’s in the guidebook. And the best part…It’s FREE!!! What’s in the Minnesota Grown Directory? 1. Individual listings for farmers and growers including name, location, website or contact…

  • Eating,  Other Writings

    Local Food Films at MSPIFF 2014

    Miracles do happen…two posts here in the same week! The Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival (MSPIFF 2014) is underway this weekend and next. There’s typically a healthy crop of farmer/local food/sustainability films in the program; this year doesn’t disappoint. If you’re looking for something indoors to keep your mind off the itch to get in the garden, I’d recommend adding one of these locavore-minded documentaries to your viewing list: Slow Food Story – Sunday April 13, 2014 – 11:10 a.m. SLOW FOOD STORY – TRAILER ENGLISH from Autlook Filmsales on Vimeo. A Year in Champagne – April 16, 17 & 19th, 2014 A Year in Champagne – Official Trailer…

  • Eating,  Other Writings

    May 24 Confessions…

    Before we get this holiday weekend started, I have a few confessions to make. No sense in putting these off any longer… Confession #1: When I got home from work today I had a major freak out on the kitchen partner because we had little ants running in circles on the kitchen floor. Not my finest moment of raging anger, but in my defense a few things led up to my “FIX THIS OR ELSE!” moment. Earlier in the day I had a call from a co-worker with the most feared words among all child development professionals: Check for lice. That leads me to confession #2. Confession #2: I made my husband…

  • Eating,  Local Products,  Locavore on the Road

    A Spot of Green

    Someone forgot to tell the chives in the Little Acre Garden on our patio that we’re having a mixed up spring. That’s right, these poor little green things are trying hard despite another 4″ of snow last night. As if today’s weather wasn’t tough enough, then came the news that the St. Paul Farmers’ Market is delaying their open this weekend. The first time in the market’s history the summer market open wont happen on time. This time last year, our patio garden looked like this: And I was making meals like this: Not exactly the case this year. So what’s a locavore to do when spring just wont show…

  • Eating,  Other Writings

    How to Choose a CSA

    Minnesota may be covered in 10+ inches of fresh new snow, but local farmers around the state are busy with spring preparations. Many of the CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) Farms already have seedlings under grow lights and their reservation books waiting for sign-ups. March and April are common months for CSA registration, with many farms filling slots completely by May. If this is your first season signing up or if you’re searching for a new farmer, I’ve put together some questions and a worksheet to help guide your choice. I’ve had good–and not so good–experiences with CSA’s. Our first year was a big bust because our expectations didn’t match what…

  • 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…

  • Cooking,  Eating,  Local Products

    Red Raspberry Frozen Yogurt

    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 yogurt and State Fair raspberry sundaes…

  • Eating,  Local Products,  Other Writings

    August Events

    August is one of the busiest months of the year for locavores. The choices of fruits and veggies are plentiful, the garden is in full production, canning and freezing fill up the weekends. It’s a busy time, but one of the best times to eat more local meals. A no other time of the year is it easier to make meals with fresh local produce. Organizations around the region are getting together to celebrate the season. Here’s some local food events you wont want to miss: August 1-31st, 2012 – Eat Local, America! Challenge - Co-op stores across the nation will be celebrating local food during the month of August. Last…

  • 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…