Monthly Archives: May 2011

Michigan Food Kickstarters

Check out this Michigan local food kickstarter Campaigns and give your support.

Brickside Brewery, Copper Harbor, MI

Brickside Brewery is the result of years of enthusiasm for homebrewed and craft beer. Years of making and enjoying beer at home have lead to this. We want to take that passion to the next step and open a microbrewery in Copper Harbor, Michigan.

With your support we can get the equipment and materials needed to move this dream to a reality. This is what I have worked on for the past 7 years, to make sure that I can make a quality beer that people will talk about. We, my wife and I, have been doing the leg work on this for the past couple of years and know this is what we want to do. We can make this happen and make it work with your support.

Bartertown Diner: Cooking towards a better tomorrow

Our food will be all vegetarian, with many vegan and raw choices. Roc’s Cupcakes will be operating from within the diner, featuring delicious and creative vegan treats. Local food will be a focus at the diner by using seasonal fruits & vegetables from local farmers as well as breads, cheeses, beverages, and even tofu, all grown or made in Michigan.

Medium Rare Pork?

Good news for those who like their pork on the tender rarer side. The USDA has lowered the safety temperture guidelines for pork from 160 degrees to 145.

With that said, I still plan to fully cook hot dogs and sausage this holiday weekend.

 Pink pork won’t kill you according to the USDA

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service has lowered its temperature recommendation for cooking pork to 145 degrees — down from 160. (This means that pork will be held to the same standard as beef, veal, and lamb.) Moreover, it is recommended to let the pork rest for three minutes after removing it from the grill or oven; the temp will continue to rise slightly while killing any remaining pathogens.

Marks Carts Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor Food

It is offical. Mark’s Carts are open for business. For the most part it is a lunch scene to about 2:00 PM. Show up later and some of the carts may be closed up for the day.

I have tried three of the six carts so far.

I had a tasty coconut vegan stew from the Lunchroom and a vegan chocolate chip cookie.

Ann Arbor Food

Humble Hog served up some good brisket BBQ and for the more adventurous Head cheese.

And Eat, which has been a mainstay at the AA downtown Farmers Market had a tasty pork confit with a mustard seed spread.

Ann Arbor Food

All offerings were great.

The Pork Buns offered by San Street are raved about, but I have yet to try them or Debajo del Sol chorizo corn dogs.

Michigan Morels 2011 update

Michigan Morels 2011

 OK. After failing to find morels in my favorite Ann Arbor park three years running, I came home to discover that a patch of Morels were found in my very own backyard. The picture above shows the harvest with more on the way that were too small to harvest. 

 The tricky part with morels besides for finding the little suckers (or paying for them) is to clean them. As you can see they have a honey comb shape that is very challenging to clean. 

Michigan Morel 2011

Even after I split them in half, which I recommend because bugs tend to live inside them, I sprayed them with water to try and get all of the dry out. Despite my efforts they were still a little gritty, but tasty. 

Michigan Morel with Bug inside

Note the shape. A morel will be hollow inside with the honey comb shaped outside connected to the stem.

Note the difference between a true and a false morel. A false morel shown above with have a "skirt" at the top. A true morel is completely attached to the stem.

 

Cooking morels with a little butter, salt, pepper and white wine
Fully cooked Morels. Yummy!!!
Warning:

Mushrooms can be deadly and while Morels are on the easier side for mushroom identification, I do not encourage anyone to pick and eat/serve to family or friends wild mushrooms without knowing what they are doing or getting an expert opinion. If you have any doubt, it is better to air on the side of safety.
 

Michigan Morel Recipe: Serves 1-4

 Split and clean throughly10-20 Morels.
 
Heat a saute pan with a little butter and a small splash of white wine.
 
The mushrooms will release their liquid. Saute out the liquid just until the pan is almost dry.
 
Add salt and pepper to taste.
 
Great over rice, with srabbled eggs or steak. (They make for an awesome steak and mushroom sandwich.
 
Related Posts:
 
 

Michigan Food Blogger Camp

I have been fantasizing about going to food blogger camp ever since I found out about a few months ago.

A few dozen food bloggers get together to in some warm resort during winter to talk food blogs and eat.

The problem for me was the money, and besides, I would rather enjoy some local eats with fellow Michigan bloggers this summer during peak season all things being equal.

Ok. I would rather do both, but I still have not managed to win the lottery yet despite the three times I played this year.

So I am sending out some feelers to see if anyone out there would be game to attend/help organize the 1st Annual Michigan Food Bloggers Camp.

The idea is a weekend get together where we share our blogs, and discuss topics like photography, layout, video, promotion and branding.

And we cook and go out for good eats.

Tea Drop

I have not talked about culinary gadgets much on this blog. I am not really a gadget guy, but I could not resist when I saw this on Kickstarter.com.

This is called Teadrop. It is still in the works. They are trying to raise funds to manufacture it.

Teadrop is used to make loose-leaf tea.

How does it work?

You put your loose-leaf tea in the holder and set the twist timer. You drop the Teadrop in hot water to steep and the side caps slide over the mesh screens with the spinning of the time. When the time it up an alarm will sound (ring?) and your tea is done.

The side caps will stop the tea from steeping further, so you do not need to rush to get the tea out of the water.

You can pre-order your own Teadrop by making a pledge on their kickstarter.com fund drive.

Extreme Couponing Show review

I must admit that I got a little obsessed with the Show Extreme Couponing.

Extreme couponers are people who spend anywhere from 20-30 hours a week clipping and organizing coupons in part due to family financial problems brought on by the recession.

The action of the show is at the check out line. Our extreme shopper gather at the check out with several loaded shopping carts in tow and a stack of coupons.

They even have to bring their husbands or a friend with them to split the purchase between two people to maximize their coupons where there are one coupon per person offers.

Some of the deals after a sale and double or even triple coupons comes out with the store owning them money on each item.

There is a rule that they do not give cash back, so the extreme shoppers get a few non-coupon items like meat to get the balance over zero.

One extreme couponer was able to purchase $2,000 in groceries for about $100.

What they all have in common is that their houses are filled with bulk, packaged and/or dry goods.

Whole rooms are used for storage including under the kids beds.

They are basically bulk buying and stocking up. An extreme couponer might have several years worth of laundry detergent.

Some of them use saving skills to donate some stuff to chairties.

But coupons are not for everything. Organic Food are harder to find and staples like meat, eggs, dairy and produce rarely go on sale.

And if that is pretty much what you eat, a farmers market may be the place to get better deals.

For example, if you were interested in bulking up on storage produce and you have a storage ceiler, you can probably ask your farmer to give you a deal.

You can load up on squash, potatoes, carrots, beets, onions, garlic, pumpkin…

And you can load up on fresh berries in season and freeze them or can them.

Co-ops also give you deal on bulk foods too.

The trick is to be on the look out for staples that you buy like condiments, canned beans, etc…

Plum Market offered a 1/2 off sales on all “green cleaning products” for earth day for example.

And sometimes health food stores offer sales on supplements.

I noticed that Kroger had my favorite organic raisin brand on sale from $5 to $3 and there was a buy two save $1 coupon offered.

I bought four boxes, but if I bought 50 for example, that would have saved me $125 for the year.

If I found 10 similar deals a year, that could save $1000.

What would you do with an extra $1000 this year?

Here is a quick list

Budget vacation
Presents and holiday/celebration meals for a year
Books for school, electronic equipment and software,
Two new bicycles,
Clothes Budget
Gym Membership and trainer
Art supplies for craft hobby and garden budget
Kitchen gadgets (food processor, mixer and garage refrigerator
Attend a comedy workshop with Second City in Chicago
Savings