Popular blogger, cookbook author finds inspiration on MN sugar beet farm
EAST GRAND FORKS, Minn. — Molly Yeh was raised in Chicago, then went to school at Julliard in New York. But it's a farm near East Grand Forks, Minn., where she has made a name for herself.
Yeh, a blogger and cookbook author, met her husband, Nick Hagen, at Julliard, where they both pursued careers in music. But moving to the sugar beet farm that has been in Hagen's family for five generations in 2013 seemed a perfect fit to her.
"It just felt so right. That we came out here once and I took a look around and I thought ok, I'm moving here whether Nick's with me or not," she says.
Yeh has attracted international attention from the comfort of her home. She has published a cookbook inspired by her popular and award-winning blog, "My Name Is Yeh," and has a large social media following. Yeh has appeared in Bon Appétit and Vanity Fair. She's one of Forbes 30 under 30 for 2017 and one of People Magazine's 50 Food Faves.
"I'm just having so much fun!" she says.
Yeh first began to pursue her passion for cooking when she moved to the farm. And that's also where she discovered Midwest comfort food.
"The Midwest does winter food the best, like hot dishes and vegetable-less salads. And those are some of the things that I fell in love with most when I moved here," she says. "Living in New York, you can get any kind of food from all over the world, but you can't really get a hot dish. And so coming here I thought oh, what am I going to learn about food? I've lived in New York, I've tasted all foods. And then I got here and I learned about lefse and tater tot hot dish and wild rice hot dish and all of these delicious things."
Yeh loves being able to grow fresh food right outside her door. They have chickens, and her favorite discovery was her rhubarb patch.
"I learned that every good Minnesotan has a freezer full of rhubarb at all times," she says.
Yeh's book is called, "Molly on the Range," and it's full of stories about her life on the farm along with her recipes.
"I love it here. I mean, I love the winter," she says. "And I just love being cozy."