• 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…

  • Local Products,  Other Writings

    Razzle-Dazzle Raspberry Picking

    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 own berries. The fall season is…

  • 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…

  • Canning,  Cooking,  Local Products

    Olympics and Zucchini Pickle Slices

    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 world can offer. My childhood adoration…

  • Cooking,  Local Products

    Minnesota Blueberry Season

    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 the best Metro picking locations. And…

  • Local Products,  Locavore Q & A

    Locavore Q & A: Laughing Loon Farm

    This post is part of the guest series “Locavore Q & A“.  Whether a beginning cook in the kitchen or a seasoned local farmer, we all have different motivations for choosing a locavore lifestyle. Each post highlights a different perspective on local food. Today’s post was written by Dayna Burtness, grower/owner of Laughing Loon Farm in Northfield, MN. Laughing Loon is a different kind of CSA – it’s chef supported! Dayna’s fresh produce is dropped at several Twin Cities restaurants and cafés each week including The Bachelor Farmer and Barrio. Laughing Loon was selected as the 2012 “Favorite Farm” by Lundberg’s Raising Organic Family Farm Contest.  Dayna also actively promotes local and…

  • Books,  Cooking,  Foodies,  Local Products

    Spoonriver Cookbook & Giveaway

    Don’t let anyone to fool you. Learning to cook like a gourmet genius is hard work. Learning to love vegetables and whole grains if you’re not a fan takes even more. Ever wish there was a cookbook that could help you do both? Meet The Spoonriver Cookbook. Written by Twin Cities local food pioneer Brenda Langton, this book is a must-add to all Minnesota locavore cookbook shelves. Langton is the award-winning chef and owner of Spoonriver restaurant in downtown Minneapolis. The new cookbook adds to a large body of work promoting local and sustainable food, begun in the co-op movement of the 1970’s. Not only do the recipes and photos…

  • Cooking,  Local Products

    Honey Maple Ham Steak with Roasted Asparagus

    A Monday night story… It’s date night and I’m running 20 minutes behind leaving work. I’m responsible for dinner and there’s only a few things from the farmers’ market in the fridge. I pound on the steering wheel and yell a rainbow of inappropriate things as I inch up to the bumper in front of me. Some days I think road construction was invented for slow and traumatic torture. Screw road construction and tough days. Not going to let it ruin my date night. In 30 minutes I’m going to have a gorgeous local meal on the table. Maybe even enough time to fix my frizzy pony tail into something.…