Local Foods -- Late in a Minnesota Winter


winter local foods in MN.jpg
photo credit Jenniferr Hess from her blog Last Night's Dinner

I've toyed with the idea just eating local foods-- foods grown within a couple hundred miles of where I live-- for Lent. Our ELCA Lenten e-mail messages started out with a treatise on eating local foods. Lent comes at a hard time of year to eat local in Minnesota-- it would be much more convenient if it were in September.

It might not be much of a sacrifice as we've been enjoying some incredible winter meals with local foods.

Our meal the other night was entirely local- from our farm and our neighbor's- except for the salt, pepper, and maybe the butter (but it was Cass/Clay and so could have been from Wade Athey's dairy east of us). We had:
-Pork Roast (Jim VanderPol) and pork gravy
-Pickled beets
-Mashed potatoes (Yukon Golds still looking fantastic in our root cellar and about 100 pound remaining)
-Squash (we had to cook and freeze all the remaining squash as it was going bad)
-Candied Crab Apples- from our own crab apple tree
-Well water to drink

Last weekend we enjoyed an all you can eat rib fest of beef and pork ribs (both pasture raised by neighbors) and cole slaw. We finished the last of the cabbages -- they looked moldy and dry on the outside, but peeling away the outer leaves left nice cabbage on the inside. We mixed the last heads of purple and white cabbage.

We are on the last frozen roasted red, yellow and green peppers. But we still have lots of sweet corn, chickens, lamb, venison, squash, frozen beans and pea pods, various edible dry beans, garlic, jams, apple sauce, beets, pickles, roasted red pepper spread, tomato sauces, potatoes, and a few frozen strawberries.

The carrots I buried in sand boxes in the root cellar are doing amazingly well -- I pulled out a large carrot that was sprouting last week and you could smell the sweet carrot fragrence and it was still firm and tasty to eat raw. We also have about a bushel of apples left in cold storage in the basement and they are still fine for fresh eating.

I'm not sure it will last us until this years harvest, but it will be fun trying...


My mice are eating local also. They love my squash and red potatos. Lucky mice. The white garden is now a rich black and i am loving that color more and more everyday. BLACK! It is wonderful. Keep eating good and you may need to ask mike for a butter churn for your birthday! If you don't get the churn keeping buying Land o Lakes butter!
love your sis

We are eating local, too: fresh kiwis and citrus, lettuce and chard, dungeness crab, a good chardonnay, candied walnuts, dried pears, and some Pt Reyes cheese. You Minnesotans may have better hockey, but California in the winter has great grub.

Yes Dan-- there are certainly better places to eat local than Minnesota. And I'm pretty envious of the local foods you list!

But next year I'll have my own pears to dry and now I'm learning how to make cheese and can get milk from a neighboring grass fed small dairy. Also, I have to get some indoor greens and herbs growing-- this is ridiculous to go months without fresh greens.

Folks around here, even pretty young folks!, talk about the casks of leutifisk sitting on the front porch. I'm sure you've seen Babbette's Feast as well.

Enjoy your local foods Dan... And you're always welcome here for a hearty Midwestern winter meal.

Went back to see where this good-looking food came from, my slow-moving antique took forever but the first picture that came up said, "Beautiful Aquidneck Farms steak" -- the only time I've ever heard that name was Aquidneck Island, (where Newport, Middleton and Portsmouth are located)(and where we lived for a couple of years) Guess the blog is from Boston ?
I'm always amazed about how small the world is getting. Anyway, this gal's food looks delicous..makes me a little too hungry! How's the blizzard? Haven't heard that it's hit you yet.

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That looks delicious.

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I live in San Diego now, but I'm originally from Ohio. I miss having a garden and just going out and picking food to eat right then and there. Something you don't really get to do in San Diego.

But one thing you wrote was that you cooked and froze your squash. Isn't it nasty when you reheat it?

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This page contains a single entry by Kathryn Draeger published on March 5, 2009 5:00 AM.

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