Crystal Grobe is a Minneapolis-based food writer who enjoys exploring seasonal and local foods. She can be found wandering farmers markets, picking produce at local farms (a lot of it), and enjoying the fantastic food community in Minnesota.
Crystal has spent over a decade writing about food for outlets like WCCO, City Pages, and Twin Cities Food Finds. She has developed recipes for General Mills, tested recipes for chefs, and had a very short-lived morning show segment on WCCO-TV talking about ingredients at the farmers market.
When she’s not writing about food, she’s working as a corporate content strategist and freelance social media consultant while trying to travel the world as much as possible.
Beginning of the season offerings are usually limited to things like rhubarb, radishes, green onions and a salad mix or two. You can also expect preserved goods, fermented foods, meat, cheese, and plenty of sweets. I was particularly excited to find fresh mint, more specially spearmint so I could restock my supply of mint syrup.
Those sprouted mung beans from last week were a thing of beauty.
Ever since I got back from Arizona, I’ve been on a project kick. First, it was the preserved lemons, then grapefruit marmalade, candied grapefruit peels, grapefruit cleaning spray, lemon salt, and really, anything citrus related.
Typically used as a condiment in Moroccan cooking, preserved lemons have moved into the mainstream in recent years and really kick up the flavor in a dish.
Life has been a little hectic lately. Between family birthdays, an intense workload, and various side projects, it can be hard to get a healthy dinner on the table each night.
With Easter less than a week away, the food publications are loading us up with recipe and meal ideas. I can’t complain too much because I’m also going to share “The Perfect Recipe For Your Easter Gathering!” While my recipe is for a delicious ham, I’ve seen an abundance of lamb recipes recently. Is that a thing? Do families serve rack of lamb for Easter? If so, that sounds tasty but a little bit advanced, at least for me.
A friend introduced me to this smoothie, and it is so refreshing! I find myself craving it, and it surely fills the void of that mint chocolate chip ice cream I keep forgetting to buy.
I don’t know about you, but I get antsy in March. Antsy for winter to be over, antsy for a new season to be ushered in, antsy for new foods and antsy for some outdoor activities.
Do you ever go on a streak of making the same dish over and over again until one day, POOF, it’s gone and you’re onto something else? It happens to me often, especially when cooking seasonally since our seasons rotate so quickly.
It’s hard to believe that the Super Bowl has already come and gone. I’m not much of a football fan but I do enjoy the rituals of Super Bowl Sunday such as menu planning, a lazy Sunday, and an excuse to eat copious amounts of queso dip — yes, the Velveeta + Rotel kind.
When I think of winter fruits, there aren’t many that come to mind. The first fruit that pops into my head is winter citrus, merely because I’ve been ordering citrus from Fruitshare for several years now and it’s certainly my bright spot in the middle of winter.
Desperate times call for desperate measures and during frigid temperatures like these ones, I don’t have patience for cold spots in our house. I use any excuse to turn on the oven to complete the circle of heat that I’m longing for. Tonight’s excuse? Roasting vegetables.
With 2015 ending in a fast-and-furious way, planning for 2016 was nearly impossible. Between family commitments, workload and general craziness during the holidays, a quiet moment to ponder upcoming goals was elusive. Or maybe I was too busy squeezing in episodes of “Making A Murderer” before and after our New Year’s Eve celebration. I know I wasn’t the only one!
Do you exchange gifts with co-workers during the holiday season? In some of my past workplaces, I’ve been incredibly close to my co-workers while at other places, I barely know my team members, which creates a dilemma.
Fennel is readily available from fall through winter, making it a popular vegetable throughout the colder months. While the bulb is the most coveted, the stalks and fronds do well in stocks, roasts, and as garnish for salads and other dishes.
As someone who keeps up on trends, especially when it comes to local food and drink, imagine my surprise when local company Homegrown Foods reached out and asked me to try their meal delivery service. I had never heard of them! Somehow I completely missed the launch last year but I’m ready to get caught up on what they have to offer now.
If cooking isn’t your thing, Minneapolis St. Paul magazine has a handy guide to everything Thanksgiving that includes a “Fake it Like You Made It” resource list so you can order dinner already made.
It really is fall, isn’t it? Time to accept the change of seasons, especially after attending the last outdoor markets at both Kingfield and Mill City recently. The final sign? Daylight Saving Time. At least we still have a few warm weather days ahead, so soak up all the sunshine you can!
After recently trying the Hello Fresh meal delivery service (more on that another time), I was eager to give another service a try and came across a local service, Local Crate, on Kickstarter.
I’m pretty sure I grew up never seeing a fig or even knowing what they were. When I did start to notice figs, they appeared to be a strange fruit with squishy insides and deemed too expensive to try on a college student’s budget.
This time of year is great for wandering around the neighborhood and taking in the sounds and scents of the approaching fall season. A little leaf crunch here and the waft of grilling there, it makes me want to throw open my windows and let all of the fresh air in. We don’t grill too often at our house, but on occasion we’ll buy a steak or come across some brats that are grill worthy. In most cases, we leave the grilling up to friends and family but did have occasion to fire it up recently to char some peaches.
Last weekend I had my 4-year-old niece tag along with me to two farmers markets: Mill City & Minneapolis, with an ice cream stop in between, of course. The girl loves her ice cream and orders it by its color rather than its flavor, totally kid style.
Yep, it’s here … well, almost here. The Minnesota State Fair opens on Thursday and I am not prepared at all. Typically I have lists upon lists that cross reference new foods, old favorites and the best route to try it all in one day (or two or three). This year I’m taking a more laid-back approach and instead of rushing from booth to booth, I’m going for the Minnesota Cooks event on Sunday, Aug. 30.
The last 10 years have been filled with blogging, trying out new recipes and spending a lot of time in the kitchen. My life has revolved around food, gathering ideas and listening to others talk about food. When I dine at a new restaurant with a fellow food lover, we’re often bellied up to the bar to get the inside scoop on what’s good, what’s new and what’s happening.
When we hit the dog days of summer (you know, those summer days with unusually-warm temperatures), frozen treats are oh-so-craveable. Popsicles, fudge bars, ice cream sandwiches, you name it. If it comes from the freezer, count me in. Heck, even snacking on frozen fruit will do the job.