Local Food Mn

Local Food All Year Starts Now!

The weekend farmers markets are upon us again and I am already thinking about what I am going to be buying. I imagine bartering for the huge, unpriced box of pickling cucumbers sitting under someone's market table. Will 30 heads of garlic really be enough. How much kale is too much? If I buy 10 boxes of beans, will I get a deal or just a funny look.


No, I'm not planning a party, but almost as soon as the summer begins, I start to squirrel food away. This year, it started with strawberries. Both from my own plants and from the local market, I managed to slice and freeze about 3 gallons of strawberries. I totally missed out on peas, but I intend not to let bean season pass without doing some late night blanching, freezing and pickling. 


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SGT July Book Club: Turn Here Sweet Corn

Its July and yes, we all know its been hot. Minnesotans are notoriously aware of the current state of things, especially when they are not in the realm of perfect, sunny and 70. It is appropriate then, that for July, our book clubs have been reading a book by local author Atina Diffley, who is well connected to the weather extremes that effect our lives and our food. However, she might have a bit of a different perspective:


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Farm to Fork, a CSA Series: Fattoush Salad Recipe

This is the first part in a bi-monthly series featuring the CSA vegetables we receive on a weekly basis.


It is sort of like getting a care package from your best friend...who happens to be a farmer. In February, my fiancée and I signed-up with Bluebird Gardens of Fergus Falls, MN to receive weekly half-bushel share boxes. We paid just $395 for the whole season!


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There's a New Pie in Town! Introducing Red Wagon Pizza Co.

I first met Pizza Pete (a.k.a Peter Campbell) before our school's fundraiser on a balmy night this past February. I was in charge of the bar (no small feat for this particular fun-lovin' SW Minneapolis Catholic school) and Pete was in charge of . . . you guessed it, the pizza. Hours before the event, I was putting the kegs on ice and stacking bottles of wine and I could smell the woody smoke filtering into the gym. The smell of burning wood is evocative of so many good things, it seemed impossible to imagine a better welcome for all the parents coming to love up our school.

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The Latin Tongue: Manana Restaurante and Pupuseria

People keep asking us, "How long are you going to keep doing this?" I'm not sure if they are surprised at out resilience, persistence or appetites, but here we are...another week, another new Latin eatery. This past week as we sat down to sup at Manana, in the Dayton's bluff neighborhood of St. Paul, we were anything but discouraged. Owner, Balmore Paiz certainly made sure that we were both well fed and well informed.


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An Adopted Korean Makes Her First Batch of Lefse

I, like the other 10,000 Korean adoptees in Minnesota, have suffered from mild identity confusion. As Kim Jackson, author of HERE: A Visual History of Adopted Koreans in Minnesota states, there is at least one of us for every lake.

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Volunteers Keep Cropping Up: Promise for the Future of Good Food. Recipe: Black walnut torte.

Could you work up an appetite to rally around the cause of expanding access to local foods? A rallying of 70 community supporters came together in Fillmore County recently to do just that. Peggy Hanson (hilarious blow-by-blow how-to-use-a-CSA blogger for Featherstone Farm from 2009 to 2011) and Frank Wright (local gardener extraordinaire and rhubarb crop specialist) hosted the event in their home, the former Cady Hayes House bed & breakfast establishment in Lanesboro. But the real engine behind the affair was a cluster of passionate 20-somethings who recruited food donors, planned the menu, signed up cooks and orchestrated all the logistics. The dinner was a gala of volunteers, each sharing his or her authentic specialty, be it food, food prep, or flying through a pile of dishes. 

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Please Come to the Birchwood Cafe/SGT Earth Day Community Dinner on April 17!

It's been almost exactly two years since the first Simple, Good, and Tasty event, or what I'm now referring to as our "meal heard round the city" at the Craftsman in 2009. Did you know that our second-ever event, held in May of 2009, was at the Birchwood Cafe?

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Start the Year Right with Good Food Classes at Linden Hills Co-op


Do you make New Year's Resolutions? If so, do you make the same ones each year? Are you still trying to shed those 20 pounds you've been resolving to lose since 1997? Me too.

Last year I resolved to learn a few new tricks: I made granola for the first time, a Kahlua-like drink, cassoulet, and a bunch of pork shoulders (my wife gets most of the credit for these). I started composting. I spent half a dozen days at Riverbend Farm to try to get a very small feel for organic farming. I even took a canning class at Linden Hills Co-op in Minneapolis.

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What School Lunch in France Can Teach us Back Home in the U.S.

Poached cod and potatoes with lemon butter, sautéed haricot verts, and fresh avocado -- sound like a meal from Heartland or Spoonriver? Well, that’s what I had for lunch recently at College Simin de Palay, a junior high school in the town of Lescar, France. And as good as the meal sounds, the story behind it is equally appealing.

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