Hi everyone,

CSA Basket

A basket from our CSA - Crazy Daisy Farms

What a great idea – you can dine at certain restaurants for the week of October 10 – 16 and a portion of the proceeds from the participating restaurants will be donated to the American Farmland Trust.

The American Farmland Trust is a organizations whose sole mission/vision is to save America’s farms. They support environmental farming practices with the purpose of supporting farms for the future.

To read more about this activity, check out the care2 make a difference blog post – http://www.care2.com/greenliving/dine-out-for-farms.html

You can obtain a list of the participating restaurants at this link – http://action.farmland.org/site/PageNavigator/dine_out_for_farms/friends_of_farms_participating_restaurants

In the meantime, across the Midwest, we are experiencing the end of our farm basket season. I will miss the local freshness and am already looking forward to the spring for the return of our CSA.

Take care,

Judy

Posted by admin, filed under Judy's Resources, Local Food Connections. Date: October 12, 2010, 8:30 am | Comments Off on Dine Out for the Farms

Hi everyone,

A few weeks ago our oldest daughter, who is the undisputed Sauce Queen, gave me a bottle of Bar-B-Que sauce she purchased at a Farmer’s Market. She said it is the best and knew we would love it. Well, she was right.

About a week later, I was at the Excelsior Farmer’s Market and right between Mackenthun’s and Ridgeroll Farms, was the M&B Homemade Seasonings and Sauce stand. I was so surprised and pleased. It also gave me an opportunity to meet Brenda Snell, one of the owners. It is always great to see a successful family business and they show their pride in their product.

M&B Homemade Seasonings and Sauces offers a complete line of products. Their sauces

M&B Homemade Sauce

M&B Homemade Sauce

include Maple, Original, Sweet Garlic, Northwoods Hickory, Zesty, Fireworks and the Grand Finale. They also offer spices with a 14 All-U-Need Seasoning and a Cowboy’s Seasoning.

All of their sauces and seasonings are made with the highest quality ingredients, with no added chemicals, but a lot of love in their product. I am pretty picky about this stuff because I don’t like buying sauces with high fructose corn syrup as their first ingredient. Most ketchup already has that as an ingredient, so why add even more!

I know they are at the Excelsior, Minnetonka, Delano and Maple Grove Farmer’s Markets, but you can contact them if you want to know of other locations or they might offer a mail purchase.

Contact information: M&B Snell, Corcoran, MNMBSnell2@comcast.net or call them at 763-221-6295.

I know they would love to hear from  you!

Take care,

Judy

Posted by admin, filed under At the Farmer's Market, Judy's Resources, Local Food Connections, Local Food Resources. Date: July 30, 2010, 5:13 pm | 6 Comments »

Hi everyone,

We have a wonderful new market near our home… Fresh Seasons Market. Their philosophy is one of being a special place to shop, but providing quality and value. They have a superior produce department, their meat and seafood department carries only the best available. The deli and bakery sections are the same. Quality and value are the mandates of the store and when you throw in a caring, friendly staff – that is what it is about these days for us.

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Posted by admin, filed under Green Resources, Judy's Resources, Local Food Connections, Local Food Resources, Local Shopping Opportunities. Date: April 20, 2010, 9:43 am | Comments Off on A Local Earth Day Celebration

Hi everyone,

Spring is here – Yea – Woot Woot and all the other cheers I can think from this gal who wants some warmer weather. Spring means that the trees will be donning their finery and look green and luscious again. The flowers will start to bloom, veggies will be coming soon from Crazy Daisy CSA and I can feel the warmth of sun cheer my soul.

I’ve been away from my blog because of some hand surgery, but am back in writing mode again. I also think the change of seasons helps with the change in writing attitudes.

Another thing I like about the spring and summer seasons is the emphasis on eating healthy. It just feels like the thing to do with the change of seasons. I would like to share a special resource for you to consider for those healthy summer meals.

Healthy Cooking Magazine April/May 2010
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Posted by admin, filed under Cooking Tips & Techniques, Healthy Food, Judy's Resources. Date: March 25, 2010, 3:32 pm | Comments Off on Greeting Spring the Healthy Cooking Way

Hi everyone,

Last week, my husband and I took another class at the Kitchen Window. We are pizza snobs and proud of it. Whenever possible, our pizza of choice is made at home with our own dough. The class was “Better-than-Pizzeria Pizza” and making the perfect dough was the premise for the class.

Kitchen Window

The dough was ready for us so we could start cooking. We were paired in groups and off to work. We assembled two types of pizza and then spent a rotation at the dough station. Our group was so much fun and we worked well together. Our Bacon-Cheeseburger and Chicken Taco pizzas were delicious. Never thought I would eat a pizza with dill pickles on it! The Pear and Gorgonzola just melted in my mouth. My least favorite was a Roasted Vegetable (which I normally love) and I think it was because of the potatoes. I would have preferred peppers, artichokes, zucchini, and onions, which is the great thing about pizza – you can make it your way

John Michael Lerma (the instructor), of Food Network fame, was ill so a local chef, Scott Hurlbut, taught the class for him. He walked in at the very last minute and taught an amazing class.

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Posted by admin, filed under Judy's Resources, Local Food Connections, Local Food Resources, Local Shopping Opportunities. Date: February 2, 2009, 3:35 pm | 1 Comment »

Hi everyone,

New Year’s Eve tomorrow and if you are having a buffet on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s day here is an excellent make-ahead dish for your table.

The great thing about the Layered Salad is the basic recipe and you can personalize to fit with what you have on hand or for your family and guest’s preferences. The measurements for the lettuce should stay the same unless you are using a very deep bowl. Then increase accordingly.
Layered Salad

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Posted by admin, filed under Healthy Food, Judy's Resources, Make-Ahead Dishes. Date: December 30, 2008, 10:52 am | 1 Comment »

Hi everyone,

Christmas Day is almost here and it will be a white (and cold) one here in Minnesota.

A tradition in our home for Christmas morning is breakfast casserole. Besides the fact that is an easy and delicious dish, you must make it ahead of time.

Christmas Eve afternoon, I assemble the dish and then into the refrigerator to wait for Christmas morning. So easy and so good and the best part is you aren’t limited to my ingredients. Be creative and add what is a favorite for your family.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Lightly spray a 9 x 13 dish with butter spray.

10 – 12 slices bread crusts removed and cut in cubes. Use your favorite bread – sourdough, whole grain, or whole wheat white.
8 – 10 medium eggs (Egg substitute is okay).
4 cups milk (Low-fat is fine to use).
3/4 cup grated cheddar cheese. I sometimes use a combo of cheddar, mozzarella, and a mexican blend.
1/4 tsp. dry mustard (regular is not a substitute).
Salt and pepper
Optional ingredients (see listing below)
Any of the following ingredients can be added:
1/4 – 1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup diced cooked ham or Canadian bacon
1/2 lb. cooked sausage, drained well
1/2 cup chopped fresh spinach
1/8 – 1/4 cup chopped fresh mushrooms
1/4 cup diced black olives
Comment: I would not consider diced tomatoes unless they are seeded and all moisture is removed. They can make the casserole soggy and can lengthen cooking time.

1. Place bread cubes on bottom of the greased casserole pan.
2. Beat the eggs, add the milk and stir to blend.
3. Add the cheese and any optional ingredients. Blend well.
4. Pour over bread cubes.
5. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

Christmas morning, remove the casserole from the refrigerator. Take off the plastic wrap and place the casserole in the preheated 325 degree oven. The casserole will take 45 mins to 1 hour to cook. It is done when a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

If you have really hungry folks, you can adjust the oven temp to 350 degrees, but watch the cooking time and check at about 35 minutes for the degree of doneness.

I serve the casserole with fresh fruit. Salsa is a favorite topping in our home.

One year I brought the pre-assembled casserole as a Christmas gift to the family that hosted a Christmas Eve dinner. Nice and easy for her the next morning after her efforts for Christmas Eve.

Merry Christmas,
Judy Ferril
Local Food Connections

Posted by admin, filed under Judy's Resources. Date: December 23, 2008, 10:14 am | 4 Comments »

Hi everyone,

December 2 already – where did the year go?

Now we turn to the holidays and gift giving. This year everyone is feeling the pinch and so it is a good time to think about giving the gift for the meaning rather than just because it is a gift.

Gift cards have become the norm and can be a well thought out gift if the card fits the person. Here are some ideas for gift cards for the favorite foodie on your list.
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Posted by admin, filed under Judy's Resources, Local Food Resources, Local Shopping Opportunities. Date: December 2, 2008, 2:43 pm | 3 Comments »

Hi everyone,

After a wonderful adventure in tasting the Columbus Salames, olive oils, cheeses, vinegars, and, of course, the chocolate, back on the bus to the Kitchen Window.

While Chef Royal prepared a superb lunch, he talked about each of the dishes and the subtleties in bringing them up one more notch on the flavor level. Our luncheon menu included several of the items we saw or tasted at Great Ciao.

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Posted by admin, filed under Judy's Resources, Local Food Connections, Local Food Resources, Local Shopping Opportunities. Date: November 20, 2008, 4:43 pm | 3 Comments »

Hi everyone,

I’ve been away from my blog for awhile. With the end of our CSA season, it is time to post on fall and winter activities in the Minneapolis area.

This past Saturday my husband and I went on another field trip. If you read my blog during the summer, our last one was to Midtown Global Market and the result was Molly’s Midtown Market Salsa recipe.

The field trip we took last Saturday was quite a bit different. We are fortunate to have the Kitchen Window, in the Uptown area of Minneapolis, as a wonderful go-to spot for high quality kitchen items that are on your “required”, “must-have”, or “want really badly” lists. It is rare that we walk in that store without finding at least one thing from one of those lists. However, I am also content to wander around the store and add to my wish list.

The Kitchen Window also offers cooking classes, both participation and demonstration, as well as special events and food tours. The last weekend was an exceptional food tour – The Grand Ciao Market Tour. Because of Kitchen Window and Chef Royal, we had access to an incredible warehouse of gourmet and everyday goodies. The group of 20 participants, led by Chef Royal Dahlstrom, were taken to Grand Ciao, which is a distributor of superior quality food items purchased by many local restaurants and stores. It is not a place where you can just go and shop. It is for the trade only.

At Grand Ciao, Jeff Price, a former chef and now food marketing guru, treated us to tastes of wonderful cheeses, meats, olive oils, and vinegars. Before we tasted, we took a tour of the warehouse. Shelves of oils, vinegars, tomatoes (canned and dried), olives, fruits, sticks of tuna in olive oil, spices (the sweet scent from fennel pollen came right through the plastic packaging), salts, peppers, pasta, oriental ingredients, chocolate, and two separate rooms in the cooler. One room for was the meats and cheeses and a separate area for the cheeses that needed cool, but less humid air.

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Posted by admin, filed under Judy's Resources, Local Food Connections, Local Shopping Opportunities. Date: November 10, 2008, 5:41 pm | Comments Off on A Foodie’s Field Trip – Part 1

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