Fresh And Local

Commit to Home Cooking -- and Try These Wontons!

Mark Bittman recently suggested in his New York Times blog that the government “encourage and subsidize home cooking ... [because] when people cook their own food, they make better choices.” I wholeheartedly agree that we make better choices when we cook our own food.

Because I love to cook, I tend to cook most of my family's meals. Still, over the past couple of years I found that it was getting easier to either go out or pick something up instead. So, last fall I renewed my commitment to home-cooking; call it a New School Year’s Resolution. We would eat out just once or twice a month, and the rest of the time we would eat our own home-cooked meals.

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Generations of Fresh and Local Cooking

One of my favorite rules to live by comes from Michael Pollan: Don’t eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food. Pollan’s advice is especially apt for me when I think about my own great-grandmother. Hilda Liljequist was born to immigrant Swedish parents in Boston in 1889. She attended the Boston Cooking School as a teenager, and took her first job as chef at a hotel in New Orleans. A few years later she made her way, by ship through the Panama Canal and by train, to a new job in Oakland, California, where she met and married my great-grandfather, a Scotch-Irish blacksmith from a Michigan farm who had actually run away and joined the circus as a youth. Later they moved to Los Angeles, when it was still possible to drive around the back roads of Hollywood, stopping to gather wild elderberries and pick oranges from a roadside grove.

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What I Ate at the MN State Fair

I recently spent a day at the MN State Fair with my friend and cohort Tracy Morgan, and we did our best to eat as much local food we can could cram into our eager bellies. Here are a few of our favorites.

I started with a big ole turkey drumstick, the kind I've watched people carry around for ages at all sorts of festivals and fairs (Tracy passed on this). I had to admit to Tracy that I'm not much of a food "toucher" - I'm kind of a knife and fork guy - but the drumstick was tender and delicious, with a bit of sweet sauce on top. I didn't do too much gnawing on the bone, partly because it's not my thing, and partly beause I was saving room for more food.

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In Defense of the Minneapolis Farmers Market

I received this letter from Susan Berkson, longtime environmental health advocate and co-host of "Fresh & Local" (on AM950, Saturdays, 8 am), in response to my question regarding her role at the Minneapolis Farmers Market, and whether the market is misunderstood within the local community. I liked the letter so much I decided to publish it, with Susan’s permission, of course.

My role is busybody. Not really. Bless the market, they asked me to host their new radio show and I said, Yes, and. Yes, I will host and I want to do social media and help with x, y, and z. So here I am.

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Fresh & Local Radio Show Keeps it "Home Grown"

freshandlocalEvery Saturday at 8:00 am, the Central Minnesota Vegetable Growers Association presents Fresh & Local, a fun, local MN food show on AM950. Here's what it says on their webpage (located on the Minneapolis Farmers Market website):

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