Spring Picnics: Simple tips for fun and safety

family picnic

Graduation parties, spring picnics and holiday cookouts are here! Unfortunately, we’ve all heard stories of big gatherings and that unwanted guest: food poisoning. Make sure everyone enjoys the moment – and has no regrets later – with these very important food safety guidelines. Continue reading

Teenage Gardener Shares Tips for First-Time Growers


Always wanted to garden but didn’t know where to start? Begin with your favorite flowers and veggies – and an easy container garden that can go in your yard, on your patio or deck.

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Foolproof Homemade Yogurt

yogurt maker

Our children seriously love yogurt. They will eat it every day, in a bowl by itself, with various toppings, in smoothies, right out of the container, you name it. I know it’s good for them. However — and I’m probably the last mom on the planet to notice this — most store-bought yogurt has an obscene amount of sugar in it. Also, yogurt is not cheap, especially the all-natural/organic varieties I like to buy. So, in order to save money, feed their (healthy) yogurt habit, but reduce the (not so healthy) sugar habit, I invested in a yogurt maker from Lehman’s – and I made my own! Continue reading

Dutch Oven Cooking: History and How-To

dutch ovens 5

Editor’s Note: Each May, we celebrate the annual Dutch Oven Gathering at Lehman’s store in Kidron, Ohio, where cast iron cooking devotees came from far and wide to cook up delicious treats for visitors to sample. Those unable to attend: this article’s for you! It includes helpful tips on getting started with dutch oven cookery, plus an easy (and yummy) recipe to try. Happy cooking!

In many ways you could say a Dutch oven is the ultimate cookware. For the resident barbecue “expert” who might feel he or she has perfected the grill, taking up cast iron cooking opens up a whole new world of mastering the cook fire for the enjoyment of family and friends. For the burgeoning cook who wants a new challenge, a Dutch oven can be a creative way to adapt both old and new recipes. I could go on and on, but the fact is cooking in Dutch ovens is just FUN. Continue reading

Spring Greens: Pickled Fiddleheads


The long winter has wound down. The apples and cabbage in the root cellar are now pig food and the potatoes good for nothing but seed. I’m hungry for something green and fresh but, up here in the New England hills, asparagus season is still weeks away. Continue reading

How to Eat Free Salad Forever

lettuce mix

One of the most appealing aspects of growing your own food is that you can enjoy a higher quality diet because you don’t have to rely on having your vittles transported hundreds or even thousands of miles to your table. Varieties that boast better flavor and nutrition than what you might find in the market but which are passed over in the commercial world simply because they are too tender or delicate to ship well can be yours. What’s more, you can enjoy these foods at a lower cost — and with a little planning ahead, for nothing! Continue reading