benjamin krikava

Feeding Your Kids Fair Food

At a gathering that celebrates deep fried SPAM curds and advertises 40 “new foods” in 2012, the Minnesota State Fair is culinary overload at its most base level. Ever since I was a boy it’s the fair food that draws me back just as much as climbing on the tractors, visiting the animal barns, or seeing the crop art in the Ag/Hort building. Going off to college I stayed in Minneapolis and attended the UofM, which was a short bike ride from the fairgrounds, and I came to the realization that now on my own I was free to eat as much food at the fair as I wanted without the supervision of a mindful parent. Awesome!

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Garden in a Glass: Bloody Mary Recipe and More.

It’s during the hottest days of the summer when heating up the kitchen by firing up the stove seems like the last thing on my list. Firing up the bbq is a decent alternative, dinner salads made out of garden veggies, and cold sandwiches get us through the July/August season without having to turn the air conditioning on in our home. When I’m planning a dinner party during these months all too often I fall back to sucking down the clichéd ice-cold beer around the grill or the table. Maybe chilled white or rose wines? Sure, they’re great hot weather standbys, but I’m completely ignoring the garden when making those kind of drinks. Why not use the fresh herbs, fruits, and even vegetables when making cocktails? Last winter I received a cocktail recipe book that has prodded me along on this idea, and while initially following the recipes verbatim I’ve now moved on to making my own cocktail creations from what’s fresh in the yard.  

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The All-Mighty Holiday Potato: Latkes, Hashbrowns and More.

Something about the holidays seems to encourage an annual ritual of overeating. Maybe it’s because up here in Minnesota we’re wearing so many layers that nobody will notice the extra 10 pounds we carry over the winter while our bicycles gather dust in the garage. I’d sure hate to spend the winter solstice in the south where you get the mountains of holiday food and can't hide yourself in coats and scarves.


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