When we look back through the history of festivals, events or gatherings related to farming, food, and harvests – you’ll find that each will have their own version or interpretation of what that celebration represents. From the ancient sacrifices in honor of Greek gods, to our modern-day hometown harvest festivals – you won’t find one occasion quite the same. One contributing factor to those differences, is location. A harvest festival in Spain often highlights grapes, where here in Michigan we celebrate cherries and blueberries. Our geography and local climate largely determine when we hold these events and what they celebrate. Another important piece is the people. Throughout history cultural influences such as religion, art, politics, and business have shaped rituals that find their way into being. As time goes on, activities evolve, disappear, grow, and sometimes become honored by tradition. Many cultures mention in their own ways, the importance of coming together as a group, family or community and the vital social connection these moments bring.These same reasonings can be applied to the MQT Local Food Fest,
Did you know that, among our state’s many notable agricultural distinctions, Michigan is home to one of the small handful of meat-exclusive community-supported agriculture (CSA) farms scattered across the United States?
Where to eat? If you’re out and about in downtown Frankfort, this is far from an easy choice. There’s the festive atmosphere and promise of pints at Stormcloud Brewing Company, the reliably delicious pub fare at Dinghy’s, and the generously stuffed deli sandwiches at L’Chayim. After a long July day of delivering boxes of our Local Food Guides throughout Benzie county, though, I was ready to really treat myself! My friend and I made our way to the sun dappled back patio of Coho Fine Dining for a few plates of local fare. Right on Main Street, Coho has a relaxed and breezy but refined feel to it. On their about us webpage, the team at Coho states “We love showcasing seasonal food and refuse to compromise on quality in our restaurant. That’s why we source our fresh ingredients from local farmers and producers.”
(Editor’s Note: This list was originally published in the Michigan Food and Farming Systems August Newsletter)
This has been an especially hard year for farming. If you need assistance, please use the resources listed below. We understand the difficulties of farming and are here if you need help navigating services. We are available by phone 517.709.8271 or email email@example.com
You’ve made all the zucchini bread and muffins your stomach can handle and your zucchini plant continues to grow fruits the size of your leg overnight. Beside ding-dong-ditching the abundance on your neighbors’ front porches, what else is there to do with the plethora of squash? Fortunately, a lot! Save your relationship with your neighbors, and try one of these tips or recipes instead:
You either sink or swim under the grueling demands of a busy professional kitchen. Chad Edwards has been cooking in Gaylord restaurants since age 14, and was the chef for two establishments in the city before turning 21. After years of rigor and practice, Edwards’ was swimming full bore on October 28, 2010, when he opened The Bearded Dogg Lounge. And at this colorful cafe, “you may sit in a booth made from old doors or at the bar crafted from maple flooring from the local nunnery, at a gathering table, in a loveseat, or at any one of several antique dining tables.” You can tell a lot of love and ingenuity has been put into this place. And it’s not just the quirky, hand-hewn seating and masterful plating of food. It’s the flourishing garden in the adjacent field constructed and tended by Chad and his father that accents the menu’s favorites. It’s the fact that Edwards wants to create a line of his own bottled salad dressings and brews the restaurant’s Doggweiser Blonde Ale. It’s the fact that in northeastern Michigan, Chad Edwards is pioneering in an old way of doing things again.
Traverse Bay Area Intermediate School District (TBA ISD) is using gardening as a tool to improve student health. Thanks to SNAP-ED funding through the USDA and the Michigan Fitness Foundation, TBA ISD implements a program called LifeSPAN, which performs cooking and nutrition lessons year round in the classroom to increase students fruit and vegetable intake and physical activity levels. Currently, they’re running summer garden camps where kids partake in nutrition lessons, help in school gardens, and cook healthy meals using produce they harvest.
Join the farmers of Peaceful Meadows Farm in Clio for their Second Annual Farm to Fork Event Sunday August 26th from 1-6pm. The event will feature a wide selection of classes on topics ranging from edible flowers to maple syrup production. Music from the Silo Singers will provide the perfect backdrop as you learn, wander the gardens, and enjoy a meal raised 100% on the farm.
Registration is now open for the fifth biennial Michigan Good Food Summit! The Summit will be held on Monday, October 22, 2018 at the Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center on Michigan State University’s campus. New this year, the conference will be a Certified Local Food Event with at least 20% of all ingredients coming from local producers.
Baste. Blanch. Chiffonade. Roast. Saute. Zest.
Ever see these terms on recipes and wonder “what the heck does that mean?” ? Well, if you have, you are not alone! One of the biggest challenges many of my clients face when changing their diet is navigating the kitchen and new recipes. Culinary education is no longer a staple in public education and our lives have become increasingly hectic. As a result, many people feel intimidated and overwhelmed in the kitchen and with cooking for themselves.