Radish Chips

Radish Chips

Often times in life we have preconceived notions of how things should be. We build up people, places--in my case an overly complex radish based horseradish sauce-- and create these ideals that will inevitably never attain our lofty expectations. Today life gave me that pleasant little reminder that plan, formulate as much as I'd like the best things often just happen, surprise us and give us that kick-in-the-butt reminder why being present in the here and now is so incredibly important.

Read More

Dandelion Capers

Dandelion Capers

Dandelions...Taraxacum officinale. Homeowners despise them and although I'm not quite yet a homeowner I do believe I've found the solution that will raise the lovely dandie from green lawn perfectionist's arch nemesis to a tasty value added condiment. Folks may I present the dandelion caper. Call me crazy but yes this actually works. Even better the capers actually taste great.

Read More

Rhubarb & Strawberry Freezer Jam

Rhubarb & Strawberry Freezer Jam

We all have to work through things and today in Minnesota I'm quite certain that's exactly what mother nature was doing. Snow pellets, blustery winds...but smattered in between the extended periods of cloud cover...tiny glimmers of sunshine. In hopes of giving the lady of all things green a little encouragement to power through her mood swings I scampered over to the garden for inspiration. And wouldn't you know as luck would have it baby rhubarb shoots!

Read More

Stinging Nettle Tea

Stinging Nettle Tea

Most folks wait for their tulips or day lilies to pop up in the spring. This lady, I wait for the nettles. Yes those pesky persnickety bothersome plants that light up your short wearing summer legs like a California wild fire...those nettles.

Thankfully my love affair with Urtica Dioica didn't occur from a short short/ dense wood experience. Instead the plant whose latin genus name means "to burn" stole my heart through a simple cup of tea.

Read More

Pickled Ramps

Pickled Ramps

There are reasons as to why I only harvest a handful of ramps when there are thousands in my "ramp patch." As are there reasons why I comb the woods mid March in a ridiculous-looking 1980s snowmobile suit--just in case one uber-early ramp might have peeked through the soil without me seeing. And sometimes those concrete examples as to why we love some things aren't quite necessary. Ramps, Allium tricoccum, generally sprout out around mid to late April in damp forest-like conditions.

Read More

White Spruce Tip Tea

White Spruce Tip Tea

It's funny how things can sneak up on you. Yesterday I got off work ready to walk my furry four-legged companion and whamo. Two hops and a skip out the door I look up and green little spruce growth is staring back at me. And not just any spruce growth...tip growth!

Read More

Maple Syrup

Maple Syrup

At certain the times the world is like "Booyah" in your face. Today that happened with the thermometer. Exhibit A:

Damn near 70°F. Two days ago I was wearing my winter parka. Today Minneapoltins were running in shorts and tank tops. One brave little boy topped everyone. Swim trunks, Lake Harriet and a very apprehensive looking mother. Wow.

Read More