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Coconut Macaroons

Makes 2 to 4 dozen cookies.

Note: This dough must be prepared in advance. Unsweetened, desiccated coconut — smaller, finer and drier than fluffy, sweetened coconut — is available at many natural foods co-ops and some supermarkets. Don't have a vanilla bean? We suggest substituting 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Michelle Gayer was at the Franklin Street Bakery when this recipe was published in 2004. She went on to open the Salty Tart bakery.

• 6 2/3 c. unsweetened, desiccated coconut (see Note)

• 1 1/4 c. water

• 4 c. sugar

• 1/2 c. light corn syrup

• 1 tsp. salt

• 3 egg whites

• 1 oz. cream cheese

• Vanilla bean, split open lengthwise


Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper. Place coconut in bowl of electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and set aside.

In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, combine water, sugar, corn syrup and salt and bring mixture to a boil. Pour hot liquid over coconut and mix on medium speed until cool, about 5 minutes. Add egg whites, cream cheese and vanilla bean and mix another 5 minutes. Remove vanilla bean and refrigerate dough at least 30 minutes.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper. Scoop dough into balls, place balls 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheets and bake until golden brown, about 12 to 16 minutes, rotating baking sheet once during baking. Remove from oven and cool completely on baking sheets. Store in a single layer in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Nutrition information per each of 4 dozen:

Calories150Fat7 gSodium60 mgCarbohydrates22 gSaturated fat6 gAdded sugars18 g

Protein1 gCholesterol1 mgDietary fiber2 g

Exchanges per serving: 1 ½ carb, 1 ½ fat.

Cornmeal Blueberry Pancakes

Serves 4.

Note: From chef Scott Rosenbaum of Wilde Roast Cafe (now Wilde Cafe & Spirits) in Minneapolis in 2007. Rosenbaum suggested preparing the batter the night before and refrigerating it in a tightly sealed container. "That way the cornmeal softens a bit more," he said. "Although they're just fine if you use the batter right away, they'll have a nice little crunch. That's why the recipe calls for boiling water, because it begins that softening process."

• 1/2 c. flour

• 3 tsp. baking powder

• 1/2 c. yellow coarse-ground cornmeal

• 1/2 tsp. salt

• 1 tbsp. sugar

• 1/2 c. boiling water

• 1/4 c. milk

• 4 tbsp. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted

• 1 egg, beaten

• 1 c. fresh blueberries, or thawed frozen berries


Preheat griddle over medium-high heat (350 degrees if using an electric griddle). In a small bowl, whisk together flour and baking powder and reserve. In a large bowl, stir together cornmeal, salt and sugar. Add boiling water, stir and let stand 5 minutes. Stir in milk, butter and egg. Add flour mixture and stir until smooth. Pour batter onto a hot griddle. Sprinkle pancakes with blueberries and cook until pancake is bubbly all over and edges are crisp. Turn pancakes and cook an additional 2 minutes, until pancake is golden brown. Serve with butter and pure maple syrup.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories290Fat14 gSodium690 mg

Carbohydrates38 gSaturated fat8 gAdded sugars3 g

Protein5 gCholesterol80 mgDietary fiber2 g

Exchanges per serving: 2 starch, ½ carb, 2 ½ fat.

Finlayson's Gazpacho

Serves 8 to 10.

Note: This recipe must be prepared in advance. Finlayson's Fine Foods was a vegetarian-friendly restaurant (1975-1981) in south Minneapolis. Published in 1980.

• 6 c. canned whole tomatoes, mashed

• 1 large cucumber, diced

• 1/4 onion, diced

• 1/2 green bell pepper, seeded and diced

• 2 1/2 tbsp. olive oil

• 1/4 c. freshly squeezed lemon juice

• Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

• 1/2 hot pepper (serrano, jalapeño, etc.), diced

• 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper


In a large stainless steel or glass bowl, combine tomatoes, cucumbers, onion, green pepper, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, hot pepper and cayenne. Cover and refrigerate for 2 days before serving.

Nutrition information per each of 10 serving:

Calories60Fat4 gSodium170 mgCarbohydrates7 gSaturated fat1 gAdded sugars0 g

Protein1 gCholesterol0 mgDietary fiber3 g

Exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, 1 fat.

Balsamic-Glazed Yams and Apples

Serves 6.

Note: From Jim and Patty Grell at the Modern Cafe in Minneapolis (the building is now home to the Sheridan Room), published in 1999.

• 4 small yams (1 1/2 to 2 lb. total), peeled and quartered

• 2 tbsp. unsalted butter

• 2 tbsp. brown sugar

• 1/2 c. balsamic vinegar

• 1/2 c. apple cider, divided

• Salt and pepper to taste

• 3 Granny Smith apples

• 1/4 c. chopped toasted pecans, optional

• 1 tbsp. diced fresh sage

• 1 tbsp. orange zest


Place yams in a saucepan, cover with cold water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until yams are just tender, but still firm, about 15 minutes. Drain.

In a sauté pan, melt butter, add brown sugar, balsamic vinegar, 1/4 cup apple cider, and salt and pepper, and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes, until mixture is slightly reduced.

Meanwhile, peel, core and dice apples. Add cooked yams and apples to balsamic mixture and stir until lightly coated. Add remaining 1/4 cup of cider, and simmer yams and apples over low heat 10 to 15 minutes. Garnish with toasted pecans, sage and orange zest.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories180Fat4 gSodium30 mgCarbohydrates35 gSaturated fat2 gAdded sugars3 g

Protein2 gCholesterol10 mgDietary fiber3 g

Exchanges per serving: 1 fruit, 1 ½ carb, 1 fat.