Farming combine in background with text in foreground reading Meals in the Field

Fields are turning to browns and golds and harvest has begun. With farmers across Illinois spending long hours in the fields, they and their farm families are shifting mealtime from the kitchen table to the field.

Being in the middle of a field without kitchen conveniences like microwaves, refrigerators, and sinks requires farmers, workers, and farm families to get creative with meals and snacks.

Wicker basket filled with live grass, flowers, and dyed eggs

Food science is so fun! Like overmixing batter to see "tunnels" develop because of gluten. Or turning cream into butter or ice cream. And especially dyeing with food and plant pigments. Pigments are the compounds that make up the colors in food and plants.

Green tea late with foam flower in a white mug

I’m a big tea drinker – chai, green jasmine, oolong – you name it, I probably have a secret stash of loose leaf squirreled away. And just in time for St. Patrick’s Day and all things green, I’ve recently succumbed to matcha madness.

While matcha is traditionally used in Japanese tea ceremonies, this powdered tea has been making its way onto coffee shop menus as green tea lattes and into baked goods for color and flavor. Check out our Matcha Yogurt Bowl and a Green Tea Matcha Latte recipes below! 

Cast iron pot hanging over campfire

Thanks to 4-H Memorial Camp in Monticello for hosting Illinois Extension and Monticello Elementary School for a day of education about pioneer lifestyle, including choosing items for a covered wagon journey, playing games, cooking and preserving foods, and learning about pelts and animals.

Deer eating near tree

Partnerships are a big part of Illinois Extension programs.  This one started with a conversation about deer hunting and turned into recipe videos and a blog series.  So many ‘thank you’s to Sara Wade, MS, RD, LDN, with Kirby Medical Center for sharing her experiences.

Check out Healthy Eats and Repeats for Parts 2 and 3 of this series for more about cooking with venison and some easy recipes.

 

What is Sauerkraut?

I grew up knowing the word "sauerkraut" but not really understanding what it was (same with coleslaw). Now I know it is a fermented concoction of cabbage – salty, tangy, a little sour, crunchy, and, to the surprise of my kid-self, rather tasty.