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Ely Folk School

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Food & Cooking

Brew It Yourself Root Beer


with Jess Edberg

Calendar Feb 6, 2018 at 6 pm

Making Homemade Root Beer
at the Dorothy Molter Museum
Tuesday, Feb. 6
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Tuition: $20 Materials: $10

Learn how to make your own homemade root beer just like Dorothy Molter, the Root Beer Lady of Knife Lake! Dorothy Molter sold her famous root beer to thousands of visitors each year at her island home in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness from the early 1950s through 1986.

Meet at the Dorothy Molter Museum and learn more about Dorothy Molter and the story behind her root beer business with a private, guided tour through her original cabins which have been relocated to the museum grounds in Ely. Then, make 32 oz. of your own root beer in a growler to take home and enjoy!

This class is appropriate for ages 8 and up; youth under 16 must be accompanied by a paid adult.

Classes can be arranged at other times on request for groups of 4 to 10.

About the instructor: Jess Edberg has over 15 years of teaching both formal and informal environmental education and historic interpretation.She enjoys living in Ely with her family and taking advantage of the outdoor recreational opportunities, especially in winter. She is the Visitor Services Manager at the Dorothy Molter Museum and is an adjunct instructor for the Natural Resources Technology Department at Vermilion Community College.


Will run

Coconut Potica


with Mary Louise Icenhour

Calendar Feb 4, 2018 at 1 pm

Sunday February 4,2018
1:00 PM- 5:00 PM 
Tuition: 40 Materials:$5

This is a coconut (no walnuts or honey) version of walnut potica using the same sweet leavened dough, but filled with a rich coconut - sour cream filling.  You will learn how to prepare the dough for rolling, fill with the coconut mixture, and bake the potica.  This is a very tasty potica toasted and buttered before serving.  Each student will take home their own loaf of coconut potica.

About the Instructor: Mary Louise Icenhour is an Ely native and retired teacher who loves to share her passion for traditional skills. She also teaches our Pine Needle Basketry, Apple Strudel, Walnut Potica and Canning classes.

Full Course

Homemade Spaghetti Sauce


with Andy Hill

Calendar Feb 10, 2018 at 10 am

Make your own Renown Spaghetti Sauce
Saturday February 10, 2018
10:00 AM- 12:00 PM

Tuition: $20 Materials: $8

Andy’s Famous Spaghetti Sauce secrets will be revealed in this upcoming class. This meat sauce is requested for benefits and out of town hunting venues and the international recipe has been made in Canada all the way to Mexico and the Island of Paul Mari.

About the Instructor: Andy Hill has been implementing creative sustainable practices in his off-the-grid homestead and garden for many years and loves to share ideas and knowledge with others. He promises there will be no secrets! He teaches our Sustainable Living classes including the basics of photo voltaic solar panels and has installed several systems in the Ely area. Andy is a valued folk school volunteer and student reviews of Andy’s classes are always positive.

Honey Tasting


with Deb Funk

Calendar Mar 10, 2018 at 2 pm

Honey Tasting
March 10, 2018
2:00 PM- 3:30 PM

Tuition: $15 Matrials: $25

Good honey is just as layered and complex as wine, chocolate, and olive oil.  Become a honey connoisseur by tasting several different honeys and describing their different accents.  Honey from many locations around the world will be available for tasting.  The different grades of honey will be covered in this class, along with what foods to pair with honey.  There will also be a presentation on how honeybees make honey. Come taste the difference that each honey bee can make. 

About the Instructor: Deb Funk began raising honey bees as a hobby after retiring. Through that experience, she came to learn how important they are to our food supply. Working with the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, the Ely Area Bee Club, she has obtained seed packets that contain a mix of pollinator seed. She teaches the Milk Jug Pollinator class as well.

Make Your Own Pasties


with Mary Louise Icenhour

Calendar Feb 8, 2018 at 1 pm

Make your own Pasties
February 8, 2018
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Tuition: $40, Materials: $5

Perhaps no traditional food is more closely associated with the Iron Range than pasties (pronounced “past-tees”). Brought here by Cornish miners, these hearty and healthy lunch pies are created from chopped fresh veggies (carrots, potatoes, onions, rutabagas), and meat (beef and pork), sealed and baked in delectable pastry shells.

Ely’s mining families appreciated how well they transported and held their heat in a lunch bucket and you’ll enjoy their great taste! In this class, you will learn how to prepare the filling, and how to roll and crimp the dough. You’ll take home a freshly-made pasty to bake and the skills to make more on your own!

About the Instructor: Mary Louise Icenhour is an Ely native and retired teacher who loves to share her passion for traditional skills. She also teaches our Pine Needle Basketry, Apple Strudel, Walnut Potica and Canning classes.

Milk to Cheese


with Gary Colles

Calendar Jun 28, 2018 at 9 am

Milk to Cheese

Three Day Class:
Thursday June 28, 2018, 9:00 AM- 4:00 PM
Friday June 29, 2018, 9:00 AM- 4:00 PM
Saturday June 30, 2018, 9:00 AM- 4:00 PM

Tuition: $180 Matrials: 12

Make artisan cheese or invent you own cheese as you learn the basics. The class covers milks, starters, bacteria, molds, and common household equipment for cheese making that you already have in your kitchen. You will learn the basics of cheese making in class and then be able to make cheese at home anytime you like. You will be making at least 6 cheeses. The first day will be Lemon cheese and Feta cheese. Day 2 you will be making Mozzarella and Ely Cheddar or cream cheese. Then day 3 we will be making fresh cheese curds and Caerphilly (a Welsh cheddar cheese). The hard cheese will need to finished at home.Bring your cheese press if you have one. If you want to buy one call me, and I will tell you about the different types or presses.

About the Instructor: Gary Colles has been making artisan cheese for nineteen years. Beginning with teaching in Michigan where he and his wife live, He has added North Carolina, Alabama, Iowa, Florida and Minnesota. He has had training from Glengarry Cheese Company in Canada. Guided by Ricki Carol of New England Cheese Making Company for fifteen years. Took a short cheese course from Michigan State University. The last training was from Peter Dixon in Pennsylvania on Farmstead Cheese Making. He is always reading more on cheese making, and my reference library now has fifty books on cheese.  Enjoys meeting and teaching people cheese making. Once they learn the basics they can make any cheese. I like getting my students to even invent new cheeses. Each class  a fun experience meeting new students.

Payment plan available: $50 deposit plus 2 payments of $71.00

Sour Cream Strudel


with Mary Louise Icenhour

Calendar Feb 3, 2018 at 9 am

Sour Cream Strudel
February 3, 2018
9:00 AM- 1:00 PM

Tuition:$40 Materials: $5

This is a sweet, creamy, and very rich version of apple strudel.  You will learn how to mix and knead the basic strudel dough.  Then you will stretch the dough and fill it with an old Slovene recipe using, sour and sweet cream, meringue, butter and sugar.  After baking, you will take home a sizable portion of your own sour cream strudel.

 About the Instructor: Mary Louise Icenhour is an Ely native and retired teacher who loves to share her passion for traditional skills. She also teaches our Pine Needle Basketry, Apple Strudel, Walnut Potica and Canning classes.

Walnut Potica


with Mary Louise Icenhour

Calendar Feb 2, 2018 at 1 pm

Walnut Potica
Friday, February 2, 2018 
1:00 PM- 5:00 PM
Tuition: $40, Materials: $8

Learn how to make the reknowned pastry associated with Ely’s Slovenian heritage. You’ll make the dough, learn how to roll it just right, then create and add the walnut filling, and bake to take home your own delicious potica. Enjoy learning from Mary Louise Icenhour in our brand new teaching kitchen from her mother’s recipe (Rose Mavetz).  Bring your own rolling pin, Mary will provide all the ingredients. 

About the Instructor: Mary Louise is an Ely native & retired teacher who loves to share her passion for traditional skills & teaches our Pine Needle Basketry, Apple Strudel, Pasty and Canning classes.

Full Course

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