Sue Z.'s Finds

Nothing says summer more than farmers’ markets and picnics. Follow my lead and put the two together. You’ll find The Chef Shack (507-358-4220, chefshack.org) at the Mill City Farmers’ Market (Second St. and Chicago Ave., Mpls., between the Guthrie Theater and Spoonriver). Chef Shack co-owners/chefs Lisa Carlson and Carrie Summer use local products to create worldly taste treats served from a trailer. This summer you’ll also find the Chef Shack at neighborhood markets in Kingfield, Northeast, and Uptown.

Cupcakes are in vogue, and there’s quite a variety to enjoy. Make a giant cupcake at home with molds from the Nordic Ware Outlet Store (5005 Hwy. 7, St. Louis Park, 952-924-9672, nordicware.com). Or go a local bakery to enjoy everything from mini cupcakes to lollipop cupcakes. Try Laurie Pyle and Joe Lin’s Cocoa and Fig in Gaviidae Commons (651 Nicollet Mall, Mpls., 612-333-1485, cocoaandfig.com) or at the Prior Lake and Minneapolis farmers’ markets. Sweet Retreat (5013 France Ave., Edina, 612-353-6230) and Cake Eater Bakery and Café (2929 E. 29th St., 612-354-7178, cakeeaterbakery.com) also bake up divine, delicious, designer cupcakes.

Kathy Anderson of Kimball is the creative mind behind Abcbabycakes.com, which are perfect for baby showers and newborn gifts. Each non-edible, cake facsimile comes in pink, blue, or yellow on a dome-covered cake plate made with a rattle, baby socks, washcloth, diapers and pins, baby shampoo, powder, and lotion, all wrapped in a blanket. They are absolutely adorable. So cute it could be a party centerpiece.

 

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Sue Zelickson (Sue Z.) is a James Beard Award-winning food media personality, philanthropist, and longtime contributor to Minnesota Monthly and WCCO radio. She has founded the Charlie Awards, the Women Who Really Cook networking organization for women in the local food industry, and the Kids Cafe at Perspectives, Inc., which improves access to nutritious meals for families in need. You can find her buzzing around from event to event throughout the Twin Cities, helping to raise funds for charitable organizations, including some she has had a hand in building.