Family & Home

The Christmas Pudding Tales, Part II: My Eyes Say No, But My Nose Says Yes

Christmas Pudding Part Two

This is Part Two of a mega-epic undertaking to make a real Christmas pudding. Also check out Part One, in which the pud gets cooking and Part Three, in which the pud is lit on fire and devoured.


Oh it’s a looker, that Christmas pudding.


I hope you disabled the sarcasm detector on your computer before reading that last line, or else BAM! Where’s the needle? It broke clean off.


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Simple, Good, and Tasty Local Gift Guide 2012

It's getting to be that time of year when we're encouraged to buy, buy, buy. But when you're thinking about gifts this year, why not shop local? We've got a round-up of local gift suggestions in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and North Dakota from our writers. There's something for everyone on your list, from hand-crafted goods like pottery and baskets to experiences like a night at a B&B to some real adventure in the form of python meat. And a couple of our writers/farmers -- Debbie at Sapsucker Farms and Elizabeth at Bossy Acres -- have products from their own farms available this holiday season. You can also check out last year's local gift guide for some perennial suggestions, and also some recipes if you want to do DIY gifts straight from your kitchen.


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Making Glog: Swedish Mulled Liquor (That You Ignite)

Glug, Glogg, Gloog, Grog

There is nothing that warms the soul around the holidays more than family traditions, especially if those family traditions involve grain alcohol and small explosions. My father’s side of the family is mostly Swedish and during the holiday season they had several traditions. They would always get together and make Swedish potato sausage, my grandmother would bake cookies, and, of course, there was always a little lutefisk. One of the traditions that intrigued me the most was Glug, this strange drink that only the adults could have. Whenever a bottle of Glug was brought out, it instantly became the center of the conversation. The recipe had apparently been passed down through the generations, and there were always stories about how it was made and rumors of relatives who had accidents while making it. Whenever Glug was brought out, everyone enjoyed it and was excited to have some, unlike the lutefisk.

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Kitchen Adventures: The Christmas Pudding Tales, Part I: My God, What Have I Gotten Myself Into

This is Part One of a mega-epic undertaking to make a real Christmas pudding. Also check out Part Two, in which the pud is cured, and Part Three, in which the pud is lit on fire and devoured.

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Co-op on a Budget: The Wedge Co-op vs. Cub Foods

The Wedge Co-op

This is the second post in our Co-op on a Budget series, which explores the different ways that we can shop co-op effectively and affordably. Also check out the first post, on shopping bulk.


About three years ago our young family went through a financial crunch, which I’m sure most Americans shared. My employer was on a two-year wage freeze and hiring-freeze. Rumors of layoffs were the smaller waves of a larger fear that the company might fail altogether. As a relatively new employee, I was confident that layoffs would affect my position. My wife, pregnant with our second child, had recently quit her job to stay home with our 3-year-old daughter and the expected baby, so my income was solely driving our household, and, to be honest, we were scared shitless.

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L.C. Finns Local Extracts: Spice Up Your Holiday Baking!

L.C. Finns flavor extracts

The idea for L.C. Finns extracts happened, as many great ideas do, over beer. Chad Gillard and a foodie friend, Lee Zwiefelhofer, were talking about what food-related items they wished were available. Both are dads of small kids, and Chad was looking to start making an item that wouldn't require such intense weekend hours as he was used to at Mill City Farmers market, where he sold his popular Danish apple dumplings, Aunt Else's Aebleskiver. Chad and Lee came up with an idea for locally made flavor extracts made from top-quality ingredients.

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Hunting for Dinner: Mom Bags Her First Deer (and Juniper Roasted Venison with Whiskey Cream Sauce)

This is the fourth post in a series about hunting for food -- truly meeting your meat. Also check out the earlier posts from the series, An Unsuccessful Pheasant Hunt, Duck Hunting, and Squirrel Hunting with Mom

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Great Grains: How to Have a Whole Grain Thanksgiving

Whole Grain Stuffed Acorn Squash

This is the seventh post in the series Great Grains, highlighting unusual whole grains and easy ways to incorporate them into your diet. Check out recent posts on teff, barley, and rye.

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Kitchen Adventures: A Passage to Indian Food, Or An Indian-ventory of Spices

Selection of Indian Spices

I have loved Indian food ever since I was a kid, when, as a picky eater on a family vacation to England, I subsisted almost entirely on a diet of CTM – chicken tikka masala, the national dish of post-colonial Britain. This Anglo-Indian hybrid of grilled marinated chicken in a spiced tomato cream sauce is hardly authentic Indian food – you won’t find it in most self-respecting Indian cookbooks, and in fact today I live up the street from any Indian restaurant that goes by the defiantly anti-tikka (and painfully awkward) name of “No Tomatoes!” But for me, CTM was a gateway drug that led me down the delicious and aromatic path to kormas, dosas, puris, saags, biryanis, and heck, even the odd kofteh.


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Alternative Flours: Not Just for Gluten-Free Diets

In recent years, the gluten-free (GF) diet which began as the only effective treatment for celiac disease has gained mainstream popularity.

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