Michigan Fresh all winter long

Winter blues? Learn about Michigan Fresh and enjoy Michigan grown food today, despite the weather conditions.

According to the calendar, spring is getting closer. Until the weather breaks, these cold winter days might have you longing for the sunshine and warmer temperatures of spring and summer. Even though gardens are not in progress yet and you might feel a bit stir-crazy from days indoors, Michigan State University Extension recommends that you use this time to explore our Michigan Fresh program. Michigan Fresh is a MSU Extension project with the goals to promote Michigan grown foods to increase our state’s economy and local food businesses and to enjoy fresh, local, healthy foods. With some thought and preparation, we can buy and eat local most of the year.

Michigan Fresh helps people explore the state’s bounty of fresh, locally grown fruits, vegetables, flowers and ornamentals. On the Michigan Fresh website you’ll find information on recommended varieties, storage, food safety and preserving techniques for fruits and vegetables or for planting and maintaining your lawn and garden. Consumers who want to grow or purchase fresh, local produce can sometimes feel overwhelmed when they arrive at the grocery store, roadside stand or farmers markets. Knowing what to buy and how to cook or preserve the food items can help people enjoy the bounty of Michigan’s gardens, orchards and fields. Michigan Fresh provides over 60 fact sheets about Michigan fruits, meats, vegetables, gardening and food safety and preservation.

Recently new to Michigan Fresh in recent months are five meat fact sheets:

  • Handling, Using and Storing Beef
  • Handling Using, and Storing Venison
  • Handling, Using and Storing Lamb
  • Handling, Using and Storing Poultry
  • Handling, Using and Storing Pork

If you are looking for information on how to use, store and preserve your meat products, Michigan Fresh offers it.

If it is a warm kitchen you crave during cold, winter days, Michigan Fresh has an ever-expanding Pinterest site. There are more than 1,600 recipes at http://www.pinterest.com/MichStExtension/michigan-fresh/. Here is a great apple recipe to try today:

Microwave Baked Apples

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients

4 large baking apples

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

Wax paper to cover

Directions:

  1. Wash apples and remove core.
  2. Cut a thin slice off the bottom of each apple to form a flat surface.
  3. Place apples in a microwave-safe baking dish.
  4. In a small dish, mix brown sugar and cinnamon
  5. Spoon mixture into center of apples.
  6. Cover apples with wax paper and microwave on high power six to 10 minutes or until apples are soft.

Michigan Fresh fact sheets are available for free download from the MSU Extension web site at http://msue.anr.msu.edu/program/info/mi_fresh. Visit msue.anr.msu.edu for more programs in your area.

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