May/Jun
2012

How To: Homemade Vanilla Yogurt

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Written by Margo Stitch and Dawn Sanborn

0003You can make yogurt in your own home for a fraction of the cost of the typical store-bought type. Doing so requires no special equipment, other than a thermometer. Other benefits include the lack of added preservatives, and there is no waste in packaging materials.

1    Basic ingredients are milk, a yogurt culture (or plain yogurt), dry milk powder, guar or xantham gum, and vanilla and sugar when making vanilla yogurt.

2     Bring 1 quart milk to 115° F.

3     Add 1/2 cup dry milk powder and 1/3 cup sugar.

4     Whisk in 1/2 tsp. vanilla.

5    Remove 1/4 cup of milk mixture and add 1/4 tsp. guar or xanthan gum to this. Whisk all back into the primary mixture.

 

May/Jun
2012

Seasons of the Vine - May/June 2012

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Written by Margo Stitch

0011Pairing Wine and Cheese

Often, white wines are easier to pair with cheese than reds. This is because the high acidity of many whites gives them versatility. The acid cuts through the rich buttery cheese and enhances the taste of the wine.

    Tannins often clash with cheeses, so red wines are generally less successful. However, local reds derived from cold climate grapes are lower in tannins. The basic guidelines below apply to all wines: local or regional (USA), old world or new world.

 

0005Opening the doors of Four Daughters Vineyard and Winery in Spring Valley in December 2011, was a dream come true for Vicky Vogt and her family, including her four daughters, Shawn, Erin, Kristin and Justine, for whom the vineyard is named.

Years in the Making

The dream of owning a vineyard and tools to make it come true came from years filled with a variety of experiences, from staying home to raise four daughters, to several in-home businesses, including furniture upholstery and custom sewing.

    When Vicky got married, she quit college because “that was the thing to do” then. She and her husband, Gary, both from southeastern Minnesota, raised their girls one mile down the road from Gary’s family’s farm in Spring Valley. They have farmed the land, where the winery now sits, for the last 20 years. Today, two of Vicky’s daughters and their husbands are actively involved in the six-acre vineyard and winery near Highway 63 and 16 in Mower County.

 

0001Rhubarb Festival

For those who crave rhubarb this time of year, Lanesboro—the rhubarb capital—is the place to be on June 2. Lanesboro’s annual Rhubarb Festival is all about the tart, red plant that we in the Midwest seem to love.

    In Sylvan Park, you can sample everything from pies and bars to chutneys and locally grown unique creations. There will also be a contest for the largest rhubarb leaf and the heaviest stalk.

    If you’re not a fan of rhubarb’s practical uses, join Jess Abrahamson and Ted Schmidt from the KTTC Morning Show as they kick off the Rhubarb Games. These include the popular Rhubarb Stalk Throw, Rhubarb Hoops and Green Eggs and Rhubarb. The games are open to children and adults.

 

May/Jun
2012

Revitalizing Rhubarb - Rhubarb Cookbook Reviews

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Written by Margo Stitch

0021“Everything Rhubarb: Recipes and stories from a small town that celebrates rhubarb,” Dry Store Publishing Company, 2010, $15 (pbk). For orders, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

As spring welcomes rhubarb season, here is a delightful collection that will inspire destination travel and culinary adventures. Four dynamo Lanesboro women identified on the title page as “Top Stalk” Nancy Martinson, “The Root” Heidi Dybing, “Tallest Stalk” Mary Bell and “Newest Stalk” Jennifer Wood published this cookbook in 2010. They depict the community spirit of Lanesboro and surrounding area along with images of the annual June rhubarb festival.

 

May/Jun
2012

Sneaking Science into Summer

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Written by Marlene Petersen

0035Jobs in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) are expected to grow by 17 percent through 2018—nearly double that of other fields—but only one in four of those jobs are currently held by women, according to a study by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. So how do we get our children, especially girls, excited about STEM? Summer camps!

Science fun

Just as innovative moms have learned to sneak spinach and blueberries into chocolate cupcakes while maintaining their delectability, several camps in Rochester are sneaking science into summer while keeping them fun.

 

May/Jun
2012

Getting Your Family Groove On

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Written by Emily Watkins

0023May. The month we celebrate mothers. What do you usually give your mom for Mother’s Day? If you are a mother, I bet some of your favorite gifts aren’t material goods but time spent with your kids. What better thing to do with your children than exercise with them?

Active at Home

Ideas in a jar. Write down activities on slips of paper and put them in a jar. When you need something to do, pick a slip and get busy. Some ideas: do 50 jumping jacks, run around the block, boogie around your kitchen, go bowling, go fishing, work in your garden or go for a hike. Have races in the backyard or at a nearby park (three-legged race, anyone?).

 

0037Jill Daniels considers herself blessed. Preeclampsia turned her first pregnancy into a life-threatening situation and cast a shadow of fear over her next two pregnancies.

    In recognition and gratitude for having three healthy children, Daniels is helping to organize the Minnesota Promise Walk for Preeclampsia™ in Rochester on May 12.

Frightening diagnosis

Like many women, Daniels knew little about preeclampsia before being diagnosed with it 31 weeks into her pregnancy. “At a routine prenatal check up my doctor noticed that I seemed to be retaining fluids and there was an increase in my blood pressure.”

 

May/Jun
2012

A Song for Sendai

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Written by Alison Rentschler

0041Just 15 days after last year’s earthquake and tsunami hit Sendai, Japan, the Sendai Philharmonic Orchestra gathered together to play for its people whose lives, homes and livelihoods were lost. In a temple, near Sendai Station, they played Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings, a pathos-filled lament also played at President Kennedy’s funeral.

    Since then, the Sendai philharmonic has played all over northern Japan, despite the ravaged region, little to no funds, an obliterated concert schedule and destroyed concert halls.

    They play in quartets and all together. They play in shelters and schools. They play because music, for them, is more than just entertainment. It is hope.

 

May/Jun
2012

Because I Said So! Love, Mommy

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Written by Amy Brase

0049A profound revelation washed over me in a sketchy public restroom stall.

    As I painstakingly teetered over my little one to wipe her tush, she peered up with a smile to boast, “Mommy! I did it! I went potty without touching anything!”

    Indeed, she had kept her hands to herself, her legs on the dry part of the seat, and her skirt off the floor. It was an incredibly proud moment.

    That’s when it occurred to me: this is what my child thinks is important to me—that she remain as sanitized as possible when approaching a precarious toilet. Is that really the message I want to embed in her precious little heart? Well, maybe. But, there’s so much more.

 

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