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I love the rituals of autumn. All those things and places that mark the passage of time that I wait for all year. Visits to apple orchards, raking leaves, pulling sweaters and sweatshirts from their summer storage, morning walks in the crisp air, apple crisp, weekend drives to enjoy the dazzling colors of fall - all the pleasant delights of the season that seem to slow down the rush and chaos of daily life. It's the pumpkins, though, that seem to mark the official "Howdy!" of the season.
With a new puppy in our house since the middle of July, I wasn't able to do my usual weekend treks with my two biking partners. But finally, the first weekend in October, the three of us headed to southeastern Minnesota for a full day on the Root River Trail in the Lanesboro area. The day we planned to be on the trail was not the sunny, pleasant autumn day we had envisioned.
I discovered brown rice around the same time I bought a yogurt maker. I was on a mission to provide only healthful food for my toddler-aged son. I was determined to keep as much sugar out of his little body as possible. The yogurt maker wound up on a shelf in storage around the same time our family grew to include another young son and life just got too busy for preparation of brown rice. Brown rice, a whole grain, hasn't gone through the milling and polishing process of having its bran and germ removed, as is the case with white rice.
This time of year I'm drawn to apple orchards like a fly to honey. So, as I was driving home from a recent trip to Minneapolis, it was no surprise when my car took a quick, unexpected turn to the left onto a winding country road. As I made the turn, I noticed, in small print on a homemade apple sign poking from the ditch, just under the arrow, it read "10 miles." The sun was shining brightly on the jewel-colored autumn leaves as I wound around curves and drove up and down rolling hills. The scenery was beautiful, but I went 10 miles and never saw an apple tree.
When the air becomes crisp and summer turns to fall, the Germans host a raucous event in Munich to mark the change of seasons. I've thought about what fun it would be to attend the festivities that, this year, begin Sept. 18 and continue through Oct. 4.
The sudden change in weather, from sunny and warm to cool, wet and dreary, put me in the mood to start "cleaning out." You know, cleaning out my clothes closet, cleaning out the refrigerator and cleaning out the kitchen pantry. I uncovered all kinds of things I had forgotten about. A flat plastic box of crystallized ginger was hidden way in the back of a pull-out shelf in my pantry, buried under a bag of aebleskiver mix and some semolina flour. A friend had given me the spicy-sweet dried slices of ginger late last winter.
At first glance of the cover of "The Minnesota Table: Recipes for Savoring Local Food Throughout the Year," one might think it's a book that would appeal to only those who live in Minnesota. But as the old adage goes, you can't judge a book by its cover. A quick peek inside of the book, just long enough to read a few paragraphs here and there, peruse one of the seasonal recipes and stop briefly at the beautiful illustrations, filled me with feelings of comfort, just like a cozy meal with family on a chilly autumn evening. Essays about the food adventures experienced as the two Twin Cities a
My granddaughters were talking with me recently about going back to school, wondering who their teachers would be and which of their friends might be in their classes this year. I think I was the one who steered the conversation to the topic of school lunch. They have a choice each day to eat the lunch the school offers or bring their own food from home. They often choose to bring a meal from home. School lunch doesn't always appeal to them. When I was in grade school, I was lucky there was a woman in the kitchen who loved children as much as she loved to cook for them.
Many years ago, when my husband and I bought our first house, I couldn't believe our luck when we moved in just as the beautiful vegetable garden in the small back yard was profusely producing and ready for harvest.
According to registered dietitian Diane Welland, there's no better way to take care of yourself and your family than by putting healthful, nutritious, clean food on the table. Clean food? Yes. Clean food is food that is free of chemicals, additives and preservatives.