Gearing Up for the Hunt: Q&A with the authors of “Untamed Mushrooms”

In culinary circles, mushroom hunting is a serious business. In Russia, it’s a favorite pastime; in France, it’s called la chasse aux champignons, and it’s something of a national mania. The appeal is simple: It’s a chance to harvest beautiful, delicious, commercially expensive gifts from nature, step up your cooking game, and commune with nature … [ Read more]

Spinning the Wheels: The goats (and cheese) of Capra Nera Creamery

The gently pitched and sprawling green fields of Altura, Minnesota, are part of the Driftless Area. The land shrugs and dips, and there are whorls and ripples that make their way across the turf. You are tenderly enfolded by the landscape rather than dwarfed by it. This is where Capra Nera Creamery cheesemaker Katie Bonow’s … [ Read more]

Cooking with Beth Dooley: Strawberries & Rum Cream Recipe

Yes, the strawberries are in! Shout it from the mountains: alpine strawberries, those tiny local berries bursting with tangy-sweet taste, have arrived at the farmers’ markets! Run, don’t walk, lest they get snatched up before you get some. Because these first-of-the-year berries are especially intense and delicious, you don’t want to do anything that will … [ Read more]

Hive Minds: How bees are inspiring food purveyors, artists, and policy wonks

Rawest Form of Honey Making a Comb-Back From peanut butter toast for breakfast to a hot toddy for breakf… a nightcap, a drizzle of honey makes everything better. And while local honey farmers have built a cottage industry around that spoonful of sugar, one farm is harvesting something a little less refined. Ames Farms is … [ Read more]

Smoke and No Mirrors: The effort and integrity behind Northern Waters Smokehaus

I spent a couple decades in real estate, where I saw every kind of sales pitch, from the clumsiest—delivered by a transparently thirsty postgraduate sweating through the armpits of his big-boy sport coat—to the most sophisticatedly smooth. One thing I learned is that we are all selling something almost all of the time, even if it’s … [ Read more]

Cooking with Beth Dooley: Easy Rhubarb-Strawberry Jam Recipe

Rhubarb, that bright, tangy vegetable (I think of it as a fruit) that announces spring. It’s going gangbusters in my backyard and you’ll find it piled high in farmers’ market stalls. It’s naturally tart, and a perfect pairing with strawberries—spring’s other darling. This easy jam makes a fine spread for morning toast, a nice garnish … [ Read more]

Go for Goat: Advocating for an under-appreciated protein with chef Alan Bergo

I will never forget the Barbacoa de Chivo at Tacqueria La Huasteca for the rest of my taco-eating life. The goat arrived steaming hot in a shade of brilliant crimson, with long strands of fibrous meat, cordlike, intertwining and trapping the braising juices. The very first bite decorated my white shirt with a streak of murder-victim … [ Read more]

Cooking with Beth Dooley: Spring Pear Salad with Microgreens Recipe

If you are as impatient as I am for spring, salads of locally grown greens may help ease the transition. Several Minnesotan farmers, such as Living Greens Farm in Faribault and St. Paul’s Urban Organics, are making real fresh salads possible all year long. The microgreens, arugula, kale, and mixed lettuces they grow brighten our … [ Read more]

Cooking with Beth Dooley: Spicy Celeriac Fries Recipe

Celeriac, aka celery root, is a whiskery, knobby, weird looking vegetable, easy enough to pass by. But whack through its tough, leathery surface, and find a crisp, white interior that tastes mildly of celery and parsnips with a hint of nuts. Celeriac is most often shredded and dressed with mayonnaise for the classic French “remoulade.” … [ Read more]

Cooking with Beth Dooley: Fried Duck Egg with Red Flannel Hash Recipe

Straightforward and simple, this hash and egg dish is a no-nonsense American classic, the kind of dish that I like to make for myself when eating alone on a frosty night, especially when that egg is duck. Duck eggs are a real treat—ramped up versions of chicken eggs—bigger and richer tasting, with sunny gold yolks … [ Read more]

The Mill: Gavin Kaysen announces this year’s Synergy Series lineup

Traci Des Jardins, Ludo Lefebvre, Jeremy Fox, and Daniela Soto-Innes are the next lineup of chefs to grace the kitchen of Spoon and Stable for Gavin Kaysen’s 2018 Synergy Series. Here’s what you need to know about each of these star chefs: Earning a reputation as the “vegetable whisperer,” Jeremy Fox was the head chef of … [ Read more]

Season’s Eatings: The science behind seasonal cravings

Ever done a happy dance in front of a shelf of Oktoberfest or crate of Honeycrisp apples in fall? Or sighed with glee as you’ve sunk your teeth into fresh, buttery corn on the cob in the summer? We’ve talked to a few Midwest food scientists to get to the bottom of what’s behind our … [ Read more]

Cooking with Beth Dooley: Polenta and fried egg recipe

I can eat polenta at least three times a day. Golden and satisfying, it’s a warming, sunny comfort, especially mid-winter. Top polenta with a fried egg, sunny-side-up, so that the runny yolk creates a rich, velvety sauce, and you have a fabulous brunch or dinner-worthy meal. While it takes patience to make a perfect pot … [ Read more]

Minnesota Spoon: Thomas Boemer’s expansive vision for cooking with fire goes beyond barbecue

Chef Thomas Boemer’s eyes are watering. He’s standing in front of an improvised outdoor kitchen, made up of a cinder block fire well, with a steel-mesh grate laid across it for a cooktop, and a two-course block wall stacked on top of that for a windbreak. It is so rough-hewn and brawny looking as to … [ Read more]

Recipe: Thomas Boemer’s Turtle Soup

In December, Thomas Boemer invited Minnesota Spoon’s Steve Hoffman to witness him work magic over a makeshift outdoor wood-fire stove, which is serving as the de facto test kitchen for Boemer and business partner Nick Rancone’s new restaurant concept in the Keg & Case Market. Over open flames, Boemer prepared Lake Superior herring fillet, pork … [ Read more]