Three Cheese Macaroni

Comfort Food: Lasagna

BBQ Grilled Cheese

Pork Sandwiches

Behind the 'Fork In It'

Friday, September 17, 2010

Cows; I know. Food; I'm still learning.

I will be blogging for one year at the end of October. I never imagined it was something I would do. I'm the kind of person that tries to live life more through my own eyes, versus all online. That's what separates me a little from my own generation. I don't have an iPhone or any of those crazy gadgets, nor am I opposed to them. I just don't need them. I'm getting off course... (pun intended).

I grew up on a dairy farm in central Minnesota - in the top dairy county in the state. I dreamed about being Princess Kay of the Milky Way and showing the Champion cow at my county fair. My days consisted of getting up at 5:30am to feed the baby calves, rushing in the house to get ready for school and learning 'just how fast' I could drive into town (16 miles away). I won't say how fast since my mom reads this blog.

I didn't care what anybody ate - as long as they were drinking milk and eating cheese. To be honest, I still feel that way. I have such a strong passion for the dairy industry and the livelihoods of those on farms - that I will stand up for it in any regard. My parents still dairy farm and produce energy made from methane that comes from cows' manure. It's an awesome idea, that isn't quite perfected - but we're proud of it.

I went to college and continued to stay involved in agriculture. I didn't win Princess Kay of the Milky Way, but I did make the top 12 and had my replica carved in a 90 lb. block of butter. I still have it. I lived in a house with 5 other girls that had also grew up on farms. Two of us loved to cook. We were actually called Betty Crocker and Martha Stewart, simply because there was always a plate full of cookies or a new pan of apple crisp coming out of the oven. We'd have guys come over from one of the fraternities just to help peel apples (that's the only reason they came, right?). We weren't professional cooks by any means, but we loved it - and we loved the gratification of someone enjoying the food that we made.

Well, I ended up marrying one of those fraternity boys and moved all the way to Vermont with him for his job. The climate in MN and VT is very similar, but the culture is not. I went from big, production agriculture to small, tiny farms. I'm not saying one is better than the other, but it was definitely a culture shock for me. I continue to be surrounded by dairy as my husband works for a dairy breed organization and I work for an artisanal cheese company. We are also surrounded by local foods, micro-brews and orchards.

Being so far away from home - and learning to make new meals for my husband and I, I decided to start blogging about it. I learned to cook from my mother as she made steak, potatoes and pie for at least 4 out of 7 meals. It was wonderful. Though, now that we are away from home, nice cuts of meat aren't as affordable or available to us. I've been learning how to make creative yet, simple meals that are fairly easy to make. Because when my husband is hungry - I better get food on the table! My membership to a monthly challenge blog has really broadened my cooking and baking horizons, and sometimes it even turns out. But it's still fun. And that's what counts.

So as I continue my life journey, I'm going to continue blogging and shooting photos, even though my husband has to wait to eat his food just a few minutes so I can take a photo of it (I drive him crazy). It's something I love and enjoy and I hope you do too.


Erika said...

And my question is: Where exactly do you keep your likeness-in-90-pounds-of-butter? Did it move to Vermont with you? If you get a haircut, can you eat your butter-hair?

September 20, 2010 at 10:14 AM
Alise said...

All excellent questions - My butter-head is in MN in my parent's large freezer. My dad keeps telling me I should take it with me so they have more room at home, but I think it belongs close to the cows. I did get my haircut! I suppose we could trim it off - but I like my hair...

September 20, 2010 at 10:26 AM
tastesbetterwithfriends said...

You had my vote when you said cheese!
Good luck:)

September 20, 2010 at 7:20 PM
Anonymous said...

Never Princess Kay, but always a princess!!! Good Luck.

September 20, 2010 at 10:41 PM
jacobskitchen said...

Great post! That butter sculpture is crazy. I voted for you! =)

Good luck!

You can check out my PFB post at:

September 21, 2010 at 12:37 PM
CrystalsCozyKitchen said...

It's a hard thing to adjust to buying meat when it's been so available from a great source, isn't it? My grandparents have a ranch and we get beef from them. So good and good quality! I hate buying it in the store.
I voted for you - Good luck with PFB! If you want to check out my entry - here's a link:

September 22, 2010 at 2:20 PM
sijeleng said...

Like others, I'm impressed that you've kept the butter bust. For that alone you'd get my vote, but I also like the description of your blog and your aims. I'm sure I'll be back. Good luck.

September 23, 2010 at 10:32 AM
bhealthier said...

Good luck!!! I voted for you- I love that you work at an artisnal cheese co and your husband works with a dairy farm- I hope you aren't lactose intolerant ( haha).

Here is my entry if you want to check it out!

September 23, 2010 at 3:49 PM
Lick My Spoon said...

nice post :) i can empathize making your co-diners wait to eat, haha. you got my vote!
Lick My Spoon

September 23, 2010 at 8:31 PM

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