My Blog on WCCO-TV: Bite of Minnesota

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The Blueberry Post

I have almost all my pictures from my camera now on my computer. Woo hoo! Ryan and I went blueberry picking back in July and now I can share with you.

We were really surprised at how fast the local farm ran out of blueberries. Imagine my sense of panic when I found my first and second choice were sold out! I did some further research and found Rush River Produce in Maiden Rock, Wisconsin. It's located on the way to La Crosse (where we went to college), so we knew it would be a beautiful drive and it's only about 1 hour from our house. Well, it's only 1 hour from our house when you have the right directions. OOPS! So, we enjoyed the driving adventure through the bluffs of Wisconsin.

Rush River has 9 acres of blueberries, so there were plenty for us to pick. It was great because we really felt no one was competing for "the spot" and we could sit back and enjoy. If you look really closely, you can see the blueberries on the bushes.

There were tons to pick, both on short bushes and tall bushes. We found that many people came and went, hopping from bush to bush looking for the biggest, blueist blueberries. Our technique was totally the opposite. We picked every single blueberry from the bush before moving on because they are ALL good!

So, after over 2 hours of picking, we had picked over 20 pounds of blueberries. I'm sure at least an additional 5 pounds went into our mouths during the 2 hours.

We spent another 45 minutes just dinking around on the farm. They also sell currants and gooseberries, but I think we were too wiped to pick anything else. I'll leave you with a picture of one of the cool wood carvings that was hiding behind the barn. I can't tell if this guy is getting out his aggressions or worshipping the sun.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Corn Chowder

Great news on the Lazyman Triathlon front...we finished! Our deadline was Sunday, but we spent about 2 hours in the gym on Saturday running and biking to finish our goals. We would have preferred to finish outside, but considering it's been raining for the last week, we had to stay inside.

We did manage to try the Corn Chowder from Vegan with a Vengeance. It was pretty good, but I felt like I needed a crusty roll with it and there was no crusty bread in sight! We were able to use our immersion blender for this recipe, which came in very handy.

I better get back to work as I just took a quick break to get a posting up. Have a great week!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Thai Noodles with Tofu

In an effort to use up some more of our cabbage, I searched for some cabbage recipes and came up with this one:

Thai Noodles with Tofu

The cabbage and carrots in this dish supply 126 percent of your daily vitamin A, key to maintaining healthy eyes.

1 package (2 oz) rice noodles
2 cups shredded cabbage
1 cup julienned carrots
1/2 cucumber, peeled, quartered and sliced lengthwise
1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded and cut into thin strips
1/4 cup chopped scallions
1 lb. pressed extra-firm tofu, broken up in pieces
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar
3 tablespoon sugar
4 teaspoon fish sauce
1/4 teaspoon Asian chile paste
1 tablespoon peanut oil

Bring lightly salted water to a boil in a medium pot; cook noodles 3 minutes. Place cabbage in a colander and drain noodles over cabbage; immediately rinse with cold water. Drain again. Toss cabbage and noodles in a bowl with carrots, cucumber, pepper, and scallions. Whisk basil, mint, juice, vinegar, sugar, fish sauce, chile paste and oil in another bowl; drizzle over noodle mixture.

Meanwhile, break tofu into pieces and toss with flour. Heat a skillet over medium heat and lightly fry up tofu in a little bit of olive oil. Divide noodles into 4 bowls and top with tofu.


This dish tasted incredibly light and fresh and was so easy to make! It's my first time dusting the tofu with flour before frying and it made for a nice crispy crust. I plan to do this again in the future.
I did make some changes to the original recipe. I substituted tofu for chicken, eliminated the cucumber (Ryan hates them!) and used soba noodles instead of rice noodles (we were out of rice noodles). Yum yum!

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Crop Share #4 & Bridge Disaster

We are okay. We were not on the bridge. Our families are okay. It can't be denied that a major bridge collapsing is completely horrible and will disrupt lives (and traffic) for years to come. The rescue workers are continuing their efforts to find bodies in the river.

My family was very shaken up yesterday as my dad would have been taking that route to table tennis last evening, but decided to stay at work a bit longer. It is amazing to hear all of the stories from the locals here who just narrowly missed being on the bridge and those who survived. The news agencies have been doing a fantastic job on coverage and you can find up to date information here and here.

I finally uploaded pictures so I could post more on our crop share. Here's our 4th crop share (yeah, I know, I'm seriously behind). We're getting more color as the summer continues!

It contained:

Salad mix
Parsley, thyme, cilantro and dill
Carrots - both orange and yellow
Kohlrabi (similar taste to broccoli)
Fresh basil - multiple varieties
Spring onions
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