Sue Z. Says

Valentine sweets for the sweethearts in your life are always a good idea this time of year, and candy lovers will never complain about treats from Groveland Confections, which offers moo pies, pralines, fudge, truffles, and more at such retail outlets as Lunds, Byerly’s, Fresh Seasons Market, and Kowalski’s, or online at www.grovelandconfections.com.

Fresh from the ovens at the Mel-O-Glaze Bakery on Minnehaha Parkway (4800 28th Ave. S., 612-729-9316) you will find Paulette’s delicious old-fashioned frosted valentine heart cookies.

If the love of your life is not a sweets lover, there are other local options. A huge basket of pears or apples is a welcome sight come February. A bushel of Jay Johnson’s Owatonna-grown Bushel Boy tomatoes are fresh-picked year-round and brightens up a dreary day to say I love you in a different way.

For those who love to bake, wrap up a copy of Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by local authors Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë Francois. You can pick up a copy at area bookstores or on Amazon.com

When going out for a meal, consider some oldies but goodies that deserve to be revisited, restaurants that are far too good to operate under the radar screen: Dixie’s on Grand (695 Grand Ave., St. Paul, 651-222-7345) serves up Southern specialties”š including house-made beef jerky, while The Modern Cafe (337 13th Ave. NE, Mpls., 612-378-9882) offers gourmet comfort food like pot roast with mashed potatoes and has a super wine list.

Sue Zelickson is host of WCCO Radio’s Food for Thought.

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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.