Friday, July 25, 2014

The Spirituality of Food

 Food is one of the things that can connect us to our ancestors—we can’t know them personally, but through these grains we can taste the same food, and in the history there is power that you can feel when you taste it. 
 Amado Ramirez of Itanoni restaurant in Oaxaca

A vacation that is only the costs a tank of gas: Northshore, MN Superior Hiking Trail near Finland, MN

This past weekend we trail-blazed to  Northshore, Minnesota for some bouldering, camping and hiking on the National Superior Hiking Trail! Here are some lovely photos to inspire yall to get outdoors. 


Wolf Lake



This is a hidden gem! It is located in the heart of Duluth, Minnesota. 

Bouldering near Section 13 on the Superior Hiking Trail

Spots to boulder along the Northshore:

We had three major stops along our hiking route.

#1: Duluth, MN has great inner city bouldering options. To find out all the spots, consult this book Peter's Guide to Duluth Bouldering (found at TrailFitters, in the Fitgers complex, Duluth). We couldn't do the classic problems at the site because it had just rained so we had to get creative and make up problems

#2: Follow the trail from Finland to Wolf Ridge Center. Along this section of the Superior Hiking trail, we found some great spots. 

#3: Highway off Section #13. Old rocks have been blow'in up for the highway--leaving perfect little sections to test out your skills.

What is your favorite spot to boulder in MN?

Trip total cost: under $95 for 2 people for 4 days

Price breakdown:
Hotel: $0--camping outdoors
Transportation: $75 for 150 miles up to the Northshore
Food: under $20, to restock on meals to make over the fire

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

MN Stinging Nettle: How to dry and make into tea

It is one of the most common "weeds" around, the Stinging Nettle, and we are going to drink it!

Here's a little fun fact about this plant. Stinging nettle has been used throughout history used as medicine and even as a food source for its fiber properties. Said to be brewed for kidney ailments by the Romans!

How to identify: It has a ribbed and hollow stem. Can grow between 2-4 feet tall. Leaves are rough and have coarse teeth. Leaves are pointed at the tip. The leaves each connected to a petiole and are opposite of each other. Use a cloth to touch the plant since it is known to cause an itch. If you dont--this could happen: . Dont wont- you can eat this just fine and not have that reaction in your throat.

example of pointed leaf and teeth

Making tea:
1. After the plant is harvested, dry it in a warm, dry place. We used a coat hanger with pins to dry it in our basement. This process should only take a couple days

2. Boil water
3. Brew for 2-3 minutes
4. Enjoy!
Store leftovers in an airtight  container and enjoy throughout the winter!

** WARNING: Always consult an expert or identification book written by an expert when eating wild plants. Do not eat any wild edible plant unless you are 

100% certain of its identification

Friday, July 18, 2014

New logo

Hi everyone!

We received our new logo today! Thanks to my talented comic artist friend, Maxeem Konrardy! Please check more of his amazing work here:

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

A watermelon cake that will be the talk of any picnic!

A couple of grandma's were talking at work about a special cake they had made. OF COURSE, I had to listen in.  Here is what I came up with! It is just a darling cake!

At first I was hesitant to cover something as delicious as watermelon in even more delicious goodness of cool whip but the end result is fantastic. Everyone at our gathering said that it added just that "extra" bit of something to an already wonderful summer treat! Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

This recipe is a keeper!


1 seedless watermelons
1 package of strawberries
1 package of blueberries
2 kiwis
1 package of cool whip
1 package of sliced almonds
3 tbsp honey
1tbsp olive oil
1. Cut the watermelon on both ends so you have just the middle flat section

2. Cut around the white section of the rind so you only have a circular fleshy watermelon base
3. Pat the watermelon dry until the outside of the fruit no longer feels wet to your touch  
4. Cut your watermelon base into the amount of slices desired (This will help the toppings to stay on better when serving)

5. On a skillet, heat up the olive oil. Add the almonds and "fry" until golden brown. Add the honey into the skillet and let the honey melt. Make sure to stir until fully combined. Once incorporated remove from heat and let cool. 
6. Spread the cool whip on the watermelon. Make sure to add enough "frosting" to not let the watermelon color peak through.
7. Careful place the almonds on the sides of the cake to create a nice border.
8. Add the fruit on top and enjoy!

Can stay at room temperature for about 2 hours! Place in fridge if it is a hot summer day to avoid melting!


Thanks to for some exact measurements 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

How to cook with MN Common Burdock: Burdock Stir Fry recipe

This is one of my favorite foraging goodies thus far! Not only is it so plentiful throughout Minnesota, the taste is very similar to celery--making it easy to add to your soups, salads or stir fry! 

  1. Identify: There are several kinds of burdock in Minnesota. Common Burdock and Great Burdock. Common Burdock is the most prevalent but both are edible. We decided to be a little lazy this weekend and  to cook with Common Burdock. It can easily be identified by, ironically, looking for its dead foliage.  The burrs will appear in bunches while on the Great Burdock, the burrs are each connected individually by different stems. See below:
Common Burdock                                                    Great Burdock
Great Burdock: each burr connected separately to stems
Common Burdock: example of burr bunch

         2. Prepare Common Burdock for cooking
Petioles on main stalk
a. Cut the main stalk at the base of the plant.  Cut away most the petioles (the stems that come off to a leaf) until you reach the midway point of the stalk.

Preparing the petioles:

1. Remove leaves

Preparing the main stalk :

                       3. After all is the stalks have been peeled and cut, make sure to rinse them to remove any the bitter taste of the stalks. 

4. Cooking with burdock:

Cook your stalks with pieces of bacon and carrots. The fat of the bacon helps to mellow the bitter flavors of the burdock. Add your favorite stir fry items and enjoy!

** WARNING: Always consult an expert or identification book written by an expert when eating wild plants. Do not eat any wild edible plant unless you are 100% certain of its identification