At Farm Bloomington, Daniel Orr sells a number of Midwestern sausages, including bratwurst from Fiedler Family Farms in Rome, Indiana. Non-Hoosier sweet Italian sausages will work in this recipe, too. Be sure to use cooking apples that will hold their shape, like Granny Smiths, Winesaps or Rome Beauties.
Kuchen is a traditional German fruit- or cheese-filled yeast cake that’s common in North Dakota (Nancy Olson says it’s in countless church cookbooks) and served at any time of day. This is Olson’s adaptation of her grandmother’s version. “I love that this is a hearty, rustic, belly-filling pastry; nothing dainty about it,” she says.
Alex Roberts’s father, Don, and his partner, Joni Cash, own a 40-acre property in Otter Creek, Wisconsin, where they grow a huge assortment of organic produce, including the chiles and tomatillos that make the base for this smoky sauce. Alex, a chef in Minnesota, pairs it with grilled local trout and a tart salad made with his father’s cucumbers. “Dad gives me a list of what he’s growing at the beginning of every season, and I plan my menus around that,” he says.