Category Archives: picnic

Eat Local

These peaches are picked locally in the morning and delivered same day. Eat local. It tastes better.

I have been exploring several locally grown vegetable farms and trying them, off and on to see which one suits my schedule. The CSA sounds like a great idea.. but they are usually on a very limited pick up schedule, so just purchasing various weekly available things from the farmer’s market seems to be a better option, for now. There are several options for local food, to purchase in my neighborhood.

  • CSA – several to choose, each with varying delivery/pickup days and locations
  • farmer market- there are three, the big one downtown, the one on Saturday mornings, and the one that is open T-S 9-3 and it’s only 2 miles from my house!
  • farmer roadside: just a pickup or two on the side of the road selling veggies – most days, if you know where to look.
  • Co-op: with a Wednesday afternoon 4-6 delivery site that is kind of close – but you have to order online on Sunday and then remember to go pick it up on Wednesday… not exactly convenient. Delicious.. but not convenient.

So, we have options… delicious options. Here’s to SUMMER!!



Coast-to-Coast Pork

When I was newly married, a billion years more than 30 years ago, we lived in the middle of nowhere at least 35 miles (in any direction) from any other restaurant except for the Dairy Queen, which was, of course, delightful.. but sometimes you need some Chinese take-out or other “real food”. Anyway, there was a Chinese restaurant on the way to visit our families, which made a nice stop for supper on the way home, or for special occasions. They made a BBQ pork appetizer plate that was pretty delicious and, that by one recent account- was not available anywhere between the West Coast and Vermont, so her mother had some mailed. To Vermont. From Oregon. Delicious. Legendary BBQ Pork.

Well fine. How did they do it? I have never had it anywhere else. I remember it being somewhat dry as far as the meat went, but the sauce was amazing. What on earth did they do to make it like that? Well, here is a pretty darn good replica of how to make it for yourself. Really. It turns out to not be all that hard, and since I made this batch today for less than a dollar a serving???, that restaurant was making a FORTUNE on this stuff. Too bad they didn’t pay their taxes with all that money, because they went out of business.

Legendary BBQ Pork 

  • 24 oz pork loin, separated into 4 pieces
  • 1/4 C Gluten-Free Tamari Soy sauce
  • 1/8 C Worchestershire sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 1 Tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 green onion sliced

Blend all these together and marinate the pork loin pieces at room temperature for about an hour. Place pork on a wire baking rack over a baking pan. Bake at 350, turning and basting with the leftover marinade every ten minutes for 1/2 an hour, then let bake another 1/2 hour. Remove and let the meat rest for 10 minutes, slice and serve with rice. The fresh pickle recipe is delicious with this as well.

The great thing about this recipe is that the leftovers are even better in a bento box with some rice for lunch the next day. Ask me how I know this.

Perfect Pickle

I like pickles. It’s true. And making them has always been fun, so why not change it up a bit and switch out some of the cucumbers for some carrots?

Sure. Why not?

Pickled Vegetables

  • Step one: make the pickle
  • Step two cut up all the veggies
  • Step three: blanch the veggies
  • Step four: pack in a jar and cover with pickle juice.

Pickle Mix: Stir together and bring to a boil:

1 1/2 C water

3 C sugar

3 C vinegar

1 1/2 teaspoon salt

Take off the heat and let cool.


Cut up lots of veggies into matchstick size pieces, enough to fill a quart jar or two.

  • Carrots
  • celery
  • green onion
  • cucumbers
  • napa cabbage -rolled and sliced
  • chinese radish


Bring enough water to cover the veggies to a boil. Turn off the heat, add veggies for two minutes. Drain veggies and let cool.


Pack veggies into clean jars. Cover with the pickle liquid. Add 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper. Cover tightly and store in the refrigerator up to a week.


Helpful hint:

Adding a spoonful of veggies and pickle juice to a small serving of rice for lunch in a bento is quite nice.


Joe Medina

The Medina Ballroom is host to a legendary flea market every Sunday. We enjoy ALL of the various things about this event, (did I mention that it’s held EVERY Sunday?!) …including the meat raffle (yes, they raffle off meat), all of the vendors of antiques, various veggies that are available, fishing equipment and left overs from garage sales. It’s always different, and always the same. 

The Hamel Lions Club sponsors it and provides some concessions at the food trailer.

(some info HERE) 

The one thing that we LOVE about the food trailer is the $2 sloppy joes. Extremely satisfying on a cold and windy slightly rainy Sunday morning. But, alas, they not only serve it on a wheat bun, but the meat mix has wheat sauce. Can’t have that. Soooooooo, had to recreate that one.

We did. It’s delicious.

-Udi’s has the gluten-free hamburger bun thing down. Get some at Lund’s – they hide them in the freezer section.

Then make the meat mix to glop on top of your toasted hamburger bun. Really. It’s fantastic. I am not saying to make this at home and put it in your pocket on the way to the Ballroom, ya know, so that you can munch on it while you cruise around pricing beanie babies, or whatever, but let’s just say that I know it’s that delicious. In fact, I am munching on one right now as I type this. So yummy.

Medina Meat Mix (Gluten Free version of perfection)

Brown these together:

  • 1 lb. of lean hamburger (I used Laura’s super lean)
  • 1 onion- chopped

Mix these things together and add to the browned meat.

  • 1 small can of tomato paste
  • 1 cup of water
  • 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp potato starch
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp dry mustard
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder (although you can skip this and mince up real garlic with the onion, too)

While the meat and onions are doing their thing, I just mix all the rest of it in a bowl and then pour it over the meat. Continue to stir it for about three minutes or so and spoon the mixture over toasted buns.



Go have a picnic

..or something. sheesh.

The “GoPicnic” people have a great product. We love several of the gluten free options. Annnnnnd if you take their current survey on FB, they give you a coupon for 40% off. yep. Here’s my opinion! and thanks for the $$ back. : )

I would have bought these this week anyway, but by using the coupon and because one of the ones I ordered was on sale as well….. I saved $35. whoa. even with the shipping this was a great deal.

I love it when that happens.