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12/19/2014
It was a sad day in the Glazebrook household when my husband, Rob, learned he had a gluten allergy. It wasn’t so much the limits on food that posed problems (although, we’ve forgotten more than once that barbecue sauce and soy sauce can harbor gluten), but the loss of hobbies: Rob and I loved to bake bread, and after a few disastrous attempts at swapping gluten-free flours into... More
12/5/2014
I grew up decorating sugar cookies in, shall we say, the classic way. We mixed various colors of buttercream frosting, spread it generously on the cookies, and then liberally topped them with sprinkles and Red Hots. Now I like buttercream as much as the next girl, but even as a kid, I kinda knew those cookies tasted gross. And it was all such a mess! The knives got gunked up and crusted with... More
11/17/2014
Jell-O "salads" and other gelatin creations have always had a place at my table. A lifelong North Dakotan, I grew up with Jell-O at potlucks, just like most Midwesterners. I still make Jell-O. Not because I have to, but because I want to. It's a nod to the cooks before me, a family tradition I'm honored to carry on. I make cherry coke Jell-O and almost always... More
10/29/2014
Some invitations you just accept on the spot. Among those are ones like, “Want to ride a tour bus around Wisconsin, meeting top cheesemakers and sampling their work?” Knowing a sweet gig when I see it, I spent last week traveling with the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board from Milwaukee to northwest of Green Bay seeking out some of the state’s (which is to say, “the world... More
10/3/2014
So, I had a giant can of pumpkin. Really giant. At 29 ounces, it was large enough, the label helpfully explained, to make two pies. I'm sure that's the only reason this can exists—to make Thanksgiving baking more efficient. But I never make two pumpkin pies. I make a pumpkin and a pecan. Or a pumpkin and an apple. And I certainly don't need four loaves of pumpkin bread.... More
9/10/2014
A few months ago, I read about a primo balsamic vinegar produced in Nebraska. Of course, I know you can find artisanal or craft anything being brewed, distilled, baked or canned just about anywhere, but this raised even my eyebrows. Good balsamic (heck, even cheap balsamic) is a product so strongly associated with Italy. So of course, I had to order a bottle to try for myself. George Paul... More
9/8/2014
travail (verb): to toil or exert oneself It started with a line. The group of 50 people snaking outside the front door of Travail Kitchen and Amusements at 4:45 p.m. was the first sign this unassuming strip mall spot on the north side of Minneapolis is something special. At 5, the doors opened, chefs cheered and thumping African tribal music kicked ... More
8/18/2014
I shamelessly admit that, despite being a man standing 6’4”, I was intimidated by the nice grandmothers waiting in the Elwell Family Food Center. The building on the Iowa State Fairgrounds houses, according to a sign outside, the largest food department of any state fair, with nearly 900 competitive classes. And in my mind, this was a kingdom that a gang of older ladies rules in... More
7/30/2014
Finally, finally, this late-blooming summer has opened up and given us a couple lovely warm weeks to nudge the garden along. My marigolds have exploded, and peeking under the leaves, I can see that several green tomatoes have rosy cheeks. And the farmers market has become a riot of color and texture, too. Last week’s haul included a beautiful basket of green beans. Sweet, fresh-... More
7/16/2014
Bacon. Funnel cakes. Deep fried. On a stick. Those four elements are a fairgoer's dream, and you can find at least one each in our picks for top 15 new fair foods. Here's a sampling of the mouth-watering highlights from seven of the Midwest's beloved state fairs. Don't forget the Tums. Indiana State Fair August 1-17 Photos courtesy of the... More