Food & Drink

“Gluten free” is quite the dietary catchphrase these days, but what does it mean? Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. Those who suffer from the autoimmune disorder called Celiac disease get all kinds of sick from gluten.

Choosing the right wine is often considered a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. This fall, enjoy the process—and the end result!—of buying a bottle of wine.

“Everything is from scratch, just like grandma used to make,” says Kathie Armstrong, owner of Kathie’s Finds in Wayzata.

If takeout conjures images of mundane, midweek, too-beat-to-cook exhaustion, conjure again! Takeout can also be romantic, festive, cozy and downright adventurous. Virtually every restaurant in the lake area offers meals to go so you’re not stuck with the brain-numbing pizza-or-Chinese fall-back.

On a hot summer evening, we’re all looking to cool down. Make that happen at any one of these local spots with some cool plates. Because these dishes are served mostly uncooked, the ingredients must be of the highest quality. Think heirloom tomatoes, high-quality seafood and artisan cheeses.

When the end of summer nears, we begin to recount all of the things we didn’t do this year. Stop yourself right there and end the season right by downing the quintessential warm-weather indulgence: hot dogs.

Poblano Pepper

500–2,500 SHU

The Poblano is a large, green, heart-shaped pepper with an amazing smoky flavor. It rates fairly low on the heat index even at its hottest. The Poblano is most commonly roasted and used in Chile Rellenos.

Our first salad was the first course in a pretty mediocre meal. Perhaps catering to our Midwestern sensibilities, for ages it seemed one couldn’t find a creative salad that departed from the ubiquitous dinner salad.

Its name means “man root,” because the potent man-shaped roots were thought to be a powerful aphrodisiac or at least a stimulant. This snake-oil tonic and early Viagra was American ginseng (panax quinquefolius) that grew wild across the Big Woods of Minnesota and Wisconsin.

While the Italians are certainly known for popularizing the noodle, many Asian cultures had already perfected the noodle while Caesar was still in diapers. This versatile ingredient takes on many forms and can complement a wide variety of ingredients and flavors.

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