Well looks like Miss Jeanette will be cooking up a storm from 101 Homestyle Favorites!
Now let’s meet a Farmwife on the Prairie– Laura Ingalls has nothing on Miss Katie… just sayin’
Katie is a full-time working from home mother to three kids and a wife. She met her husband on a July day on an airplane to Kansas City. She was single mom and had moved back to her family farm to focus on her son and marketing communications career. But God had another plan. It was a fairy tale romance that could be a Hallmark movie. They married 15 months later. In a flurry, her husband traded in corporate America for small town life on the North Dakota prairie. They moved, built a house and had two babies in the first two and half years of their marriage.
Today her husband works alongside his father in a family-owned business. Katie no longer goes to an office every day but works seamlessly with modern technology from their house on the prairie. It may surprise you but indeed there is broadband internet on the prairie. She travels frequently as she works across North America with family farmers and agriculture organizations, a passion she has from her 5th generation North Dakota farming family.
Katie’s commute to the airport is 92 miles and she knows the drive well. They live 97 miles from a Starbucks…or any form of pop culture. While she once thought this lack of exposure to pop culture would be a disadvantage, she now absolutely loves their remote living. There isn’t a stop light in their county or any nearby county. Her son is in a public school class of twenty students. They know their neighbors who are also their friends, business patrons, local farmers, owners of local businesses and attend church with them.
Despite their remote location, their little town and region is economically strong. Other young families have moved to the area. North Dakota just happens to have the lowest unemployment in the nation with a billion dollar state surplus of money. Cost of living is remarkable low. Choosing to raise their family on the prairie makes life simple for their kids where they are immersed in rural life that doesn’t have many of the hassles of the urban life.
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Now let’s see what Miss Katie has to say in her In the Kitchen Interview:
Who taught you how to cook?
My Grandma Nola has a home economics degree and definitely influenced and impacted my mom who taught me the most about cooking. Grandma Nola also has taught me tried and true recipes and many details of baking and cooking.
My mom has taught me how to cook for a crowd and always how to pull off a family meal in less than 30 minutes in what she called “once around the kitchen”. My mom probably was the original “Martha Stewart”. Only my mom is better than Martha because she is an amazing cook, artist and seamstress.
Over the last four years we have lived just down the road on the rural North Dakota prairie from my mother-in-law, I have learned baking from her and am waiting for her to teach me some of their heritage Germans from Russian family recipes.
If you had a superpower in the kitchen, what would it be?
Definitely my superpower would be to clean up the kitchen with a twitch of my nose or the snap of my fingers, like on the old television show Bewitched. Thankfully I do have a helpful son and husband who often do dishes after supper.
What is the one thing you can’t live without in the kitchen?
My KitchenAid stand mixer which I have in a lovely cabinet on a retractable counter top my father-in-law designed for me. I had a year with out a dishwasher but I don’t think I could do a year with out my KitchenAid mixer. At least, I would cook and bake a lot less.
What is your go to dish when company comes a calling?
I love hosting family gatherings or large groups of friends over for parties whether it is grilling burgers or ribs to a large pot of soup to a few egg bakes and pancakes for brunch or a full turkey dinner. Food is the center of fellowship, family and fun for us.
A family favorite and the best recipe we have ever found for a classic soup is Chicken Wild Rice, which I modified from the famous Marshall Field’s recipe. A favorite for grilling this summer would be ribs.
What is your least favorite chore in the kitchen?
Washing pans and anything I can’t squeeze in the dishwasher.
What is your favorite thing in the world to cook in your kitchen?
It isn’t the food that makes me happiest in the kitchen. It’s the people I am cooking for. My favorite thing in the world to cook varies with the season. For example last summer, I learned about the heritage of Germans from Russia on the North Dakota prairie and how all the women cook cabbage.
Cooking cabbage wasn’t my favorite thing to cook but learning the culture and heritage of my husband’s made it a favorite summer cooking story and experience.
Also this time of year, we camp often and cooking with cast iron over the fire is a favorite experience. Here’s Pioneer Woman’s “Marlboro Man’s Favorite Sandwich” which can also be qualified as my husband’s favorite sandwich, only we make it over the camp fire.
Where would we find you when you aren’t cooking in the kitchen?
I want to be remembered by my kids as the mom who made time for family meals. I include them in my cooking as much as possible and when I am not cooking, I am hopefully playing games with my kids, reading books or outside riding bikes. As a family we spend a lot of our free time attending our 13 year old son’s activities with a different sport each season that he plays. We camp and fish as often as possible in the summer months and frequently go to my family farm. In between the outings and activities, my husband manages and owns a family business with his parents and I juggle a working remotely with travel career. As my mother told my husband before we got married, “Life with Katie may not always be easy but it’s never dull.”
Now let’s get to voting on which Gooseberry Patch Cookbook Miss Katie will be cooking from: