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Edible Antics

Touring Wisconsin Food

Tag: gifts (page 2 of 4)

Rhubarb Season – The Best Rhubarb Foods From Wisconsin

Rhubarb season is upon us! My memories of rhubarb come from a visit to my Grandma’s house. She grew rhubarb in her garden and it resembeled a red stalk of celery. She cooked it up with sugar for a sort of tart apple sauce like concoction, without the apples. My rhubarb experience has expanded and I’ve tried some other tasty rhubarb foods like these:

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie- One of the most common ways to serve rhubarb is baked up in a pie with strawberries like this Strawberry Rhubarb Pie by Bea’s Ho-made Pies, a Wisconsin company based in Door County. If you want to taste Bea’s pie for yourself, you can have one shipped to your door from

Vodka Cosmo Cranberry Rhubarb Jam -The artisans at Spirit of Wisconsin know how to combine fruit and Wisconsin-made liquors to create amazing jams, relishes and preserves.  The Vodka Cosmo Cranberry Rhubarb Jam- try to say that ten times fast! – comes in a elegant gift box with other fun spreads and dips. This makes a great gift for birthdays, anniversaries or even a Wisconsin wedding.

Rhubarb Kringle – A Kringle is a giant Danish pastry that is shaped like an oval and filled with scrumptious fillings. Fruit filled kringles are always a favorite and rhubarb kringles are only available for a limited time during rhubarb season, so have one shipped directly from the bakery to your door while you can.

Rhubarb Syrup – Sour rhubarb and bitter hops come together to create this unique syrup by Quince and Apple. The Tasting Table in Chicago tried it and said “good luck keeping this on the shelves!” because they loved it so much. You can add it to sparkling wine, soda water or your own cocktail creation.

What’s your favorite way to enjoy rhubarb?


Wisconsin Specialties That Foodies Must Try!

wisc-specialties-1I read an article today on the Saveur website called 7 Things You Can Only Get In Wisconsin. I’m a Madison resident so I can attest that this is a great list that includes some of my favorites, but as you drool over the hunger-inducing descriptions of Wisconsin specialties, don’t despair if you’re out of state, a few of these local treats are  available for shipment nationwide.

Quince and Apple preserves for example, including the shallot confit mentioned in the article, are available online at You can even send a gift box with the preserves plus Wisconsin cheese and Potter’s Crackers (more on these later) to your favorite foodie this Christmas. My personal favorite preserve flavor from Quince and Apple is the Fig and Black Tea. I use it a few different recipes including Pioneer Woman’s Fig and Prosciutto Pizza. I’ve tried this recipe with other types of fig spread and Quince and Apple just can’t be beat.

wisc-specialties-2Babcock Hall Ice Cream is a another treat mentioned in the artlce, and it’s a favorite of University of Wisconsin grads and Madison townies alike. With the help of coolers and dry ice, your favorite Babcock Hall flavor can be shipped to your door. I agree with the author that Mocha Macchiato is a winner, but I’d also like to add Orange Custard Chocolate Chip and Peanut Butter Cup to the list of must-try flavors.

Now that we’ve cleared up that these tasty treats ARE in fact available outside of the state, what other  Wisconsin specialties can you find online? Here are some more of my favorites.

Potter’s Crackers– Everyone loves crackers, but do you know anyone who gets amped about crackers? I do! I legitimately get excited when I see Potter’s Crackers. They taste like they are freshly baked right here in town- because they are!

Babcock Hall Cheese– As the author of the Saveur article mentioned, some cheesemakers in Wisconsin go to school to earn the title of Master Cheesemaker. They study at Babcock Hall at the University of Wisconsin in Madison.  So you can get cheese made by the people who teach the masters how to make cheese!

For even more Wisconsin specialties, check out some of these related blog posts:

Cheese Are A Few of Our Favorite Things: Staff Favorite Cheeses

What is Juusto?

5 Things To Do With a Cheese Curd

Top 4 Weird Wisconsin Foods



Wisconsin Artisan Spotlight: Navarino Elk and Buffalo Ranch

wisc-artisan-navarino-1The artisans of Wisconsin make products with pride and passion, and Terry Diedrich of Navarino Valley Elk and Buffalo Ranch is the perfect example. Today I got the chance to talk to him about his business. Terry raises elk and buffalo and sells the meat to local restaurants and farmers market patrons. He also sells jerky and summer sausage on

Terry was born and raised in Wisconsin in a family of dairy farmers. He knew he wanted to work in agriculture, but he decided to work smarter. He learned that raising elk and buffalo would be less labor intensive than milking cows, and since elk and buffalo don’t mind a few hills, he could raise his animals on rough terrain. Today Terry has over 100 elk and 200 bison on his ranch.

After a few minutes of talking to Terry you can tell there’s a deeper purpose to his business than making elk jerky and buffalo burgers. Terry is committed to raising animals without the use of antibiotics and hormones. I asked him how people feel about less common meat varieties.

“Initially people didn’t get it,” Terry said, “But more and more people have learned about the health benefits of elk and bison.”

The health benefits he’s talking about are apparent when you compare elk and bison to more common meats like beef and pork.  Elk and buffalo have less fat, less cholesterol, and  more omega-3s. Terry also raises his animals free from hormones and antibiotics. Since the details of modern agriculture are too dull for a food fun blog, I won’t get into that, but let’s just say that Terry is committed to raising animals to make the best quality meat available.

Just for fun, I asked Terry about his favorite elk or buffalo dish. He loves a good gourmet burger, especially if there’s a homemade bun and gourmet toppings involved. You can find more yummy food photos on the Navarino Elk and Buffalo Ranch Facebook page, or shop for gift baskets of elk and bison sausage and jerky on

Have you ever tried elk or buffalo meat? What do you think?

As a special gift to Edible Antics readers, you can enter promotion code FUNBLOG at checkout to get 10% off food gifts at





What is Summer Sausage? And Other Wisconsin Summer Sausage Questions, Answered!

what-is-summer-sausage-1What is summer sausage? Good question! It’s that stuff that usually comes in a cheese and sausage gift box. It’s ready to eat and you don’t have to refrigerate it until it’s opened, and it’s great for parties since it goes nicely with Wisconsin cheese. Place a slice of summer sausage and a slice of cheese on a cracker with a dollop of mustard and you’re in cheese and sausage heaven! That’s about all I know, and I’m leaving a few questions unanswered, but I’ve done some research to answer all of your summer sausage questions.



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Fun Cupcake Ideas for Father’s Day

In honor of Father’s Day I’ve rounded up some fun cupcake ideas for all different types of dads. These cupcakes are much more memorable and infinitely tastier than the usual tie gift.



Golf Cupcakes from Simple Girl


 Dad will enjoy these adorable cakes before he hits the links. You can even write him a special note on the flags.

 Fishing Cupcakes from Tidy Mom blogfun-cupcake-2

Give your dad a tasty snack for his next fishing trip. These super cute cupcakes are topped with blue icing and a fish fruit snack on a fishing poll made out of a tooth pick and some thread.










 Lawn Mower Cupcakes from Disney Family Fun fun-cupcake-3


I know a few dads who actually enjoy mowing the lawn, so if this applies to your dad, these are the cupcakes for him. The mower is made out of chocolate candies and black licorice, and the grass is coconut with green food coloring. These cute cupcakes are fun, easy to decorate and guaranteed to make dad smile.








Brats on the Grill Brownies from Edible Antics



I made these creative cupcakes for dads who love to grill. These tiny bratwursts are actually Hot Tamale candies on a brownie grill. I suppose you could use cupcake batter instead of brownies. I would just fill the cupcake tins with a little less batter than usual so the cakes don’t rise over the edge. This will give you a flatter surface to put the decorations on.

For more Father’s Day gift ideas and Wisconsin food, visit my Pinterest boards.

Celiac Awareness Month: 1 in 133 Americans Struggle with Celiac Disease

celiac-awareness-monthMay is Celiac Awarenmess Month and with 1 in 133 Americans struggling with celiac disease, you probably know someone who has it. People with celiac disease can’t tolerate gluten, a protein found in grains like wheat, barely and rye.

When I think about what I eat during a normal day, I can really appreciate how difficult it is to avoid gluten. I would have to change my whole diet. My beloved morning English muffin, my tasty pizza creations and even beer would no longer be on my menu. Luckily, eating a gluten free diet has become more popular, and gluten free foods, including baked goods, are becoming more accessible.

If you or someone you know has celiac disease, or can’t eat gluten for other reasons, there are some great resources available:

Gluten Free Product ReviewsThe National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) has a blog with gluten free product reviews. This is a valuable resource for finding gluten free snacks that taste just as good as the regular version.

Gluten Free Recipe of the Week– If you can’t eat gluten but you love to cook, this blog is for you.  The blog showcases a new gluten free recipe every week, also brought to you by the NFCA.

Gluten Free Gifts – If you need to send a gift to someone on a gluten free diet, visit, which features a whole gluten free section including candy, salad dressings, snack bars and more.


Grilling Cookbook, Sauces, Seasonings and More from Grilling Gurus Mad Dog and Merrill

Mad Dog and Merrill have their own TV show, grilling cookbook and a variety of grilling sauces, seasonings and marinades with their names on them. I know if I had my own cookbook and sauces, I’d be pretty full of myself. I’d probably move to New York City and open up a restaurant that serves teeny tiny portions and bottles of wine that cost more than my current rent. But that’s not Mad Dog and Merrill. The down to earth duo has been grilling for 30 years and continues to bring home-style Midwest cooking with a side dish of humor to viewers all over Wisconsin, Minnesota and beyond.

Watch them grill up some bratwursts.


Check your local listings and tune in to the next episode of Mad Dog and Merrill’s Midwest Grill’n, or watch full episodes on YouTube.

Sauces, seasonings and marinades from Mad Dog and Merrill make a great Father’s Day gift for dad’s who love to grill. Can’t decide which one to get? Choose the sampler pack that contains one of each plus brat sauce and the Mad Dog and Merrill grilling cookbook.




Top 4 Foods With Wisconsin Mushrooms

The fact that I love Wisconsin mushrooms is surprising considering that I disliked mushrooms as a kid. When I learned in school that mushrooms were a type of fungus, I was quick to inform everyone that they had fungus on their pizza, in their omelettes, etc. To celebrate the end of my mushroom hating days, here are my favorite Wisconsin mushroom foods.


top4-foods-wisc-mushrooms-11. Morel Mac and Cheese at The Old Fashioned. I was checking Facebook when I noticed The Old Fashioned restaurant in Madison was having a special on morel mushrooms. I went for dinner that night and ordered the morel mac and cheese. The meaty mushrooms stood up to the rich, velvety cheese sauce in a rich and wonderful dish I can’t wait to eat again.



top4-foods-wisc-mushrooms-22. Mushroom and Swiss Bratwurst. Last year the staff did a Wisconsin sausage taste test and these brats stood out as a favorite. The meat crafters at Glenn’s Market fill the sausages with meat and big chunks of mushroom and swiss to guarantee a strong flavor in every bight.




top4-foods-wisc-mushrooms-33. Portabella Mushroom Salsa. I love trying unconventional salsas and this one is as unique as it is delicious. The mushrooms and tomatoes are freshly picked and the salsa is made in small batches to make the best mushroom salsa in Wisconsin.




top4-foods-wisc-mushrooms-44. Portabella Pasta Sauce. I crave spaghetti at least once a week, and even though I can be picky about my food, I have no problem with jarred pasta sauce. Especially this portabella sauce that is made with fresh basil, roasted garlic and mushrooms from the oldest mushroom farm in the Midwest.




Can’t decide? Try a mushroom lover’s gift box with pasta sauce, garlic mushrooms, portabella salsa and more.top4-foods-wisc-mushrooms-5


Cooking with Wine Made Easy



This is one of my favorite cooking related sayings, so when I heard about our newest gift, Wine Seasonings, I was excited to try them! If you want more of your wine to end up in the food next time you are cooking with wine, try some of the mixes and marinades from this Wisconsin company that specializes in “just add wine” creations.

I recently made the spinach dip and it couldn’t have been easier. I mixed a packet of the Wine Seasoning’s Spinach Dip Mix with 16oz of sour cream and 1/4 cup of wine. I brought the dip and some carrots to work to share with my coworkers. The dip was creamy and flavorful but I must confess, it would have been over the top amazing with some potato chips instead of the carrots.

It made enough dip for a party and since we only have a few people in the office I got to take home some leftovers. I thinned out the dip with a little bit more wine and used it as a salad dressing. The recipe book that came in the gift box also suggests using the dip as a baked potato topping or transforming it in to a seafood dip with a few extra ingredients. There are so many possiblities, and that’s just ONE of the 13 items in the gift assortment! Other packages in the Wine Seasonings assortment include:

Cranberry Tarragon Dipcooking-with-wine-2

Sun Dried Tomato Basil Dip

Vegetable Dip

Zasty Garlic Dip

Wine Bread

Italian Marinade

Lemon Pepper Marinade

Orange Ginger Marinade

Chicken and White Rice Soup

This is a delicious gift for a the wine-os and foodies in your life.

Month Clubs – How To Spot a Good One

month-club1Month Clubs make excellent gifts since your recipient will be reminded of you each month when a gift arrives.  I noticed my coworker loves hot sauce, and I needed to find her a wedding gift.  I decided to get her a Hot Sauce of the Month Club gift, but unfortunately every Hot Sauce Club I found came up short! I had high expectations from seeing the month clubs at and couldn’t find a Hot Sauce of the Month Club that met all of my requirements. Here is a list of qualities to look for in a month club:

1.  A list of the gifts you will be getting each month. Many of the clubs I looked at didn’t tell me what gift would arrive each month. In the case of the Hot Sauce Club, I was left with unanswered questions. Does the club start with the mildest sauce and get hotter? Or does each month have a hot sauce assigned to it?  The Cheese of the Month Club, on the other hand, has a cheese for each month, and you can cleary see what cheese will come each month of the year before you order.

2. A welcome letter. At, we send out a welcome letter to all month club recipients as soon as we receive the order.  This makes the month clubs a perfect last minute gift, because the letter will usually arrive to the recipient’s home within a few days of the order being placed.   The  letter tells the recipient that they are signed up for the month club and should expect a gift each month.

3. A place to include a gift message. has spoiled me because any gift I send from allows me to include a gift message, which in the case of the month clubs, is included in the welcome letter. Some online stores don’t even have the option of a gift message, which I find frustrating.  How will the recipient know who the gift is from?

4. Information about when the month club will take a break. Some food month clubs, like the Cheese of the Month Club, take a break during the summer months if it is too hot to ship, make sure you look for this information when ordering.

5. A phone number to call.  Many online stores hide their phone number and when you do finally locate it, you get connected to someone in foreign country who is hard to understand.  Not the case at! Our phone number right on the top of the website. Oh, and it’s also right here: 1-877-947-6233.  All of our customer service representatives are located in Wisconsin.  Since we’re month club professionals, there probably won’t be any problems with your month club, but just in case, help is only a phone call away.

In the meantime, I’m going to start tracking down 12 hot sauces from Wisconsin so I can create a Hot Sauce of the Month Club the right way!

Looking to send a month club this holiday season? Browse all of the month clubs available at

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