The Story Behind the "M"

The "M" is 620 feet above the Missoula Valley floor. It is 125' feet long and 100' feet wide. University of Montana forestry students cut the switchbacks into the side of the hill in the early 1900's. The first "M" was assembled out of whitewashed rocks in 1909, and given a fresh coat of paint by freshmen every year, until 1968, when all those rocks were cemented together with concrete.

Photo by Nelson Kenter, kenterphotography.com

Eat, Drink & Be Merry

Eat drink & be merry Content

Carrot and Quinoa Mini-Muffins

By MELISSA D'ARABIAN-These carrot and quinoa mini-muffins can be kept i... more

Bruschetta of Heirloom Tomatoes

By HOWARD KARP - Back by popular demand, this bruschetta dish is a grea... more

Summer Squash ‘Pasta’ Dish

By SARA MOULTON - Taking advantage of squash's bounty: Here I slice th... more

Asian Beef and Mushroom Burgers

By KATIE WORKMAN - What if you could have the taste and juiciness of beef bugers while cutting back on a bit of the fat? The answer: Add in some mushrooms.... more

Carne y Frijole Cazuela (Beef and Bean Casserole)

By Bob Zimorino - This dish took me about 45 minutes start to finish and is one of my favorites.... more

Summer Sauces

By MANDA HUDAK - These two sauces are inspired by that tradition. Each is easy to prepare and designed to showcase the sweet and tangy flavors of summer. Both can be served hot or cold with a host of options.... more

Crispy Buttermilk-Soaked Pork Chops

By SARA MOULTON - Summertime and the living is easy. Dinners can be casual, thrown together at the last minute. But when the kids start heading back to school, it’s time to switch gears.... more

Creamy Buffalo Potato Salad

Looking ahead to the Fourth of July and its picnics, I wondered what would happen if I Buffalo’d some potato salad.... more

Sweet Cream Ice Cream

By MICHAELLA IRLBECK - This recipe for Sweet Cream Ice Cream will blow you away with its simplicity. You’ll need just five ingredients and an ice cream maker.... more

Alaskan Halibut with Morels

By HOWARD KARP - This dish sums up the spirit of summer. Its white flakey Alaskan halibut with Oregon morel mushrooms, wild leeks, fresh ramps and green peas.... more

Sea Scallops with Brown Butter Potato Cream

By JONATHON HARTIG - Restaurants like Restaurant Martin inspire me to look at and appreciate food for its beauty and simplicity.... more

Bourbon-Fried Pound Cake

By ALISON LADMAN - When we first encountered deep-fried, bourbon-soaked Twinkies, we were a little smitten. Until, that is, we realized we could do so much better.... more

Spring Moussaka

By MANDA HUDAK - Moussaka, the traditional Greek casserole, layers ground lamb seasoned with oregano, cumin, cinnamon, garlic and mint and crispy eggplant with a rich spiced cream sauce.... more

24th Annual Garden City BrewFest

The 24th annual Garden City BrewFest will take place Saturday, May 7, 2016 in Caras Park from noon to 8 pm. The Garden City BrewFest again serves as the grand finale of the 5th annual Missoula Craft Beer Week. ... more

Crispy Pork Shank

By JONATHON HARTIG-We are lucky to have such great local pork products here in the Flathead Valley. Incorporating fresh pork in your menu is as simple as visiting one of our local butchers.... more

Greek Avgolemono With Rice

By Katie Workman - Avgolemono is the chicken soup of Greece, and as we know, pretty much every country has its own version of a comforting chicken soup. In Greek, avgolemono means “egg lemon”.... more

Butter Roasted Radishes

By ALISON LADMAN - Easter sides are depressingly predictable. Why not try something different..like these roasted radishes with tarragon and lemon.... more

Pavlovas

By TRACY DARUE - Pavlovas are meringues that are baked slowly in a low-temperature oven and topped with fresh fruit and whipped cream.... more

Montana Lentil Chili

By MANDA HUDAK - A vegetarian friend asked me for the lentil chili recipe. I am excited to share this recipe because it will be even better with lentils grown right here in Montana.... more

King Cake

By MICHAELLA IRLBECK - Students at The Culinary Institute of Montana at Flathead Valley Community College celebrated Mardi Gras.... more

Dungeness Crab Arancini

By JONATHON HARTIG-I enjoy making food that can be altered to fit a cuisine, taste preference or dietary need. Arancini fits that bill. ... more

Snickerdoodles

By CHEF TRACY DARUE - People have different tastes in cookies. Some like them flat and crisp, while others like them soft and chewy. Here's a recipe that combines both.... more

30 Day Declutter Challenge

By ERIN TURNER- February is my month for some serious decluttering--but doing a whole house can be overwhelming. So why not break it down by room?... more

Zim’s Chili

By BOB ZIMORINO - There is chili and then there is chili. It is one of those dishes that almost anyone that cooks probably has a version of. This is my ground beef chili.... more

Fresh Alaskan Halibut with Savory Sauce

The combination of fresh Alaskan halibut and savory sauce produces phenomenal flavors By CHEF HOWARD KARP for the Flathead Beacon Of all of my Mediterranean fish recipes, this one is my favorite. The combin... more

The Veggie Bowl

By MANDA HUDAK-In 2016 I propose that we recognize that food is really most delicious and healthful in its natural form, without all those added preservatives, chemicals and processed sugars.... more

Roasted Garlic Tomato Soup in Puff Pastry

By CHEF HOWARD KARP-This soup has all the flavors, aroma, and presentation for a perfect winter entertaining dish.... more

Perfect Prime Rib

By CHEF HOWARD KARP-Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone, it’s time to start preparing for your perfect Christmas dinner.... more

Focaccia Bread

By JONATHON HARTIG - Focaccia bread is easily one of my favorite breads to make and eat. Focaccia, like Ciabatta, should have large, open pockets or holes within the bread.... more

Inexpensive Trick for Fresh New Holiday Decor

By ERIN TURNER-I’ve discovered a new little trick for giving my décor some new life while not spending very much money.... more

My Best Crab Cakes

By CHEF HOWARD KARP-I probably have five different recipes for crab cakes, but this one consistently receives the most rave reviews from my clients. The key is the quality of crab meat used. ... more

Earl Gray and Cranberry Cheesecake

By CHRISTIAN PERBIL-Everyone loves cheesecake, regardless of the time of the year. What better way to infuse a cheesecake with the essence of the season than by using cranberries? ... more

The Seasonal “Seven”

By ERIN COMMONS - Snickers, caramel apples, turkey, gravy, cookies, and fudge – oh, my!  It’s no wonder the average American gains seven pounds from Oct. 31 through Jan. 1.... more

Caramel Pecan Tart

By TRACY DARUE - It's Thanksgiving time and I have to admit that I’m not much of a pie person. If you're like me, try this scrumptious recipe for a pecan caramel tart.... more

Spaghetti and Meatballs

By CHEF HOWARD KARP - My favorite comfort food may come as a surprise for many of you. Are you ready? It’s spaghetti and meatballs! The secret is making it traditional style.... more

Pumpkin Souffle With Caramel Sauce

By CHEF HOWARD KARP - When I think of fall, sugar pumpkins come to mind. This pumpkin is the best for creating pumpkin pies, cheescakes, raviolis, cookies and souffles.... more

Sweet Potato Enchiladas

By JAMIE LIPHARDT-Break away from the revolving door of proteins and go meatless. Sweet potato enchiladas are hearty, satisfying and crowd pleasing.... more

Peter Luger’s Steak Sauce

By JONATHON HARTIG - A great steak sauce can add that final element to a beautiful plate of food. The recipe here was adapted from the famous Peter Luger Steak House in Brooklyn, NY.... more

The Birth of a Pumpkin Patch

By ERIN TURNER - What began 7 years ago out of frustration and desperation has turned into an incredible experience and a blessing for our family...The Turner Farms' Pumpkin Patch. ... more

Kaiserschmarnn (Austrian Pancakes)

By Chef TRACY DARUE - Trying to figure out what to do with the abundance of apples from your trees? Try this recipe for Austrian Pancakes.... more

Grilled Indian Corn Chowder

By CHEF HOWARD KARP - To help usher you into this wonderful time of the year, here’s a recipe for my favorite fall chowder.... more

Managing Screen Time For Kids

By ERIN TURNER - The tech world is here and it’s going to stay--despite thoughts from parents that it might just be passing fad. So how do you manage electronic devices for kids?... more

Inside Out Potato Tacos

By MANDA HUDAK - In this dish, I am reformatting the traditional Mexican potato taco, which in its classic form is a delicious hors d’oeuvre or appetizer. ... more

Tenth Annual Montana Wine & Beer Festival Set For October 23, 2015

The 10th Annual Montana Wine & Beer Festival is scheduled for Friday, October 23rd, at the Adams Center from 7-10 p.m.... more

Brown Sugar and Strawberry Scones

JONATHON HARTIG - A scone has always been one of my favorite baked goods. The combination of flaky, buttery dough, sugar topping and fresh fruit leaves little else to be desired.... more

Berry Crème Fraiche Cake

By MICHELLE HICKS - This is a cool refreshing cake. It's not overly sweet, and the creme fraische adds a perfect little tang.... more

The Great Debate: School Bedtime During the Summer

By ERIN TURNER-There's a debate amongst parents about how to handle the last days of summer with their school aged children. What time is bed time?... more

Nicoise Salad

This versatile Nicoise Salad is perfect for entertaining guests and can be used as an appetizer, a first course salad or an entrée.... more

On the Grill: Backyard Stir Fry

By PAUL SIDORIAK - Love Chinese style stir fry but don't like heating up the kitchen This summer? Why not do in on the grill? Here's my a recipe and step-by-step directions.... more

Quick Coffee Cake

By CHEF TRACY DARUE - Even though it’s been hot outside, I still enjoy baking first thing in the morning when it’s cool. This is a wonderful treat for breakfast or to take along in to a picnic.... more

Peach Pie and Pecan Crumble

By CHEF HOWARD KARP - For the short time while peaches are in season, this recipe might just become your favorite fruit dessert, especially with this ultimate crumble-top.... more

Beat The Heat Roll-Up Snack

By ERIN TURNER - We had friends visiting and their son has Juvenile Diabetes so I wanted to be sure I had appropriate food and snacks for him. Here's one that fits the bill and beats the heat:... more

Gazpacho of the Americas

By CHEF HOWARD KARP - Summer has come to Montana with scorching temperatures that are making chilled soups from the bounty of summer gardens even more enticing.... more

Bruschetta of Cherry Tomatoes

By CHEF HOWARD KARP - What you end up with is a refreshing and delicious dish that will make you say 'ahhhhhhh'... more

Chilled Yellow Corn Soup

By CHEF HOWARD KARP - Here’s a refreshing and tasty chilled soup that presents well with striking colorful garnishments.... more

Filet of Beef Grilled in Coffee Beans With a Velvet Chili Sauce

By CHEFF HOWARD KARP for the Flathead Beacon Firing up the grill offers an easy way to entertain during your summer get-togethers with out-of-town guests. Creating a dinner that can be cooked entirely on the... more

Fresh Alaskan Halibut

By CHEF HOWARD KARP- Of all of my Mediterranean fish recipes, this one is my favorite. The combination of fresh Alaskan halibut and savory sauce produces phenomenal flavors. ... more

Organizing Gift Cards in a Binder

By ERIN TURNER - I love gift cards, but I hate when I unexpectedly find myself in a restaurant and realize I've left the gift card for that restaurant at home in the drawer. ... more

Oat Bran Muffins

By TRACY DARUE- Remember the oat bran craze back in the late 1980s? I was hooked on everything oat bran then, hearing that it was a superfood. And these muffins are gluten-free.... more

Honey Lime Broiled Salmon with Peanut Sauce

By MANDA HUDAK - Salmon season is underway and here in Montana we are very fortunate to have access to wild Pacific salmon. Here's my recipe for honey lime broiled Salmon with peanut sauce.... more

Recipes to Celebrate Cinco de Mayo

By ERIN TURNER - Despite not having a drop of Mexican heritage in my blood, I still love celebrating Cinco De Mayo. Here are 5 of my favorite Cinco de Mayo recipes.... more

Frugal and Delicious: Homemade Refried Beans

By ERIN TURNER - With Cinco de Mayo right around the corner, why not some try my recipe for simple, delicious, homemade refried beans. ... more

Frisee Salad, Welsh Rarebit Crouton, Vinaigrette

By JONATHON HARTIG - For this salad I've incorporated a couple of local Flathead Valley beers. I encourage you to experiment with your own favorite local brews! ... more

How To Save Money While Stocking Your Pantry

By ERIN TURNER - People ask us all the time for advice on how to stock up on essential pantry items. They assume we have a Costco membership and buy everything in bulk.... more

An Easter Tradition: Challah

Challah is a slightly sweet, very rich bread. Traditionally, the braided Sabbath bread of Judasim is a European celebratory loaf, symbolic of God's goodness and bounty.... more

Parmesan-Crusted Chicken with Asparagus

By CHEF HOWARD KARP - This picture-perfect dish really turned out to be a crowd pleaser.... more

Kid Approved, Homemade Cheese Crackers Recipe

By ERIN TURNER - In today's world of overly processed food, I love showing the kids how to make homemade and healthy snacks. Here's my recipe for homemade Cheese-Its Crackers.... more

Celebrating St. Paddy’s Day with Homemade Irish Pasties

By ERIN TURNER- As the great granddaughter of an Irish immigrant, I have to admit my own love of Irish Pasties. It is the perfect meal…meat, potatoes all wrapped up in a flaky crust. ... more

Spiciy Thai Coconut Soup

By Manda Hudak - My pre-spring soup cravings are for a lighter, spicier and healthier soup than the heavy heartier soups of mid-winter. ... more

On the Grill: Colors of the Flag of Ireland…Kebabs

By PAUL SIDORIAK - This year for St. Patrick’s Day, I plan to represent the colors of the flag of Ireland on a shillelagh and make St. Patrick’s Day kebabs.... more

Italian White Bread (Grandpa’s Bread)

By JONATHON HARTIG - This bread recipe reminds me of home and my grandfather, and it was a catalyst for me in pursuing a culinary profession.... more

Kimchi

By JAMIE LIPHARDT-Kimchi is a traditional Korean food made with Napa Cabbage and lots of chili powder called Gochugaru. It can be described as sweet, sour and spicy.... more

Pad Thai

By JAMIE LIPHARDT - Pad Thai is one of my all-time favorites. I crave it. It’s all encompassing with sweet, sour, spicy, hearty, light, healthy and satisfying all in one big bowl. ... more

Spaetzle with Smoked Kielbasa

By CHEF HOWARD KARP- Here’s a recipe for Spaetzle--which is a rough form of noodles or dumplings. There’s no rolling or cutting involved in making it.... more

Spinach Salad with Fennel, Apple and Citrus Vinaigrette

By CHEF JAMIE LIPHARDT-A great salad to accompany the most simple or the most elegant meal.... more

New Year Low-Fat Carrot Muffins

It’s that time of year when most of us resolve to take better care of ourselves. These muffins are a great way to satisfy your sweet tooth without leaving you feeling too guilty.... more

Baked French Onion Soup

By CHEF HOWARD KARP - French onion soup is a wintertime favorite, but making this dish true to its roots does have some secrets. ... more

Home-Baked Cinnamon Rolls

Home-baked cinnamon rolls are a treat, especially on Christmas morning! This recipe can be mixed ahead of time and kept, unbaked, in the freezer or refrigerator. ... more

Simple Homemade Caramel Sauce

By ERIN TURNER- Every Christmas I like to make homemade gifts for family and friends. This year I am excited to be making up batches of Homemade Caramel Sauce. It's Heavenly!... more

Mushroom, Leek and Gruyere Strata

By JAMIE LIPHARDT- Here's a way to repurpose your thanksgiving leftovers: Behold the Strata, a dish comprised mainly of eggs, cheese and leftover stuffing.... more

Thanksgiving Refrigerator Rolls

By CHEF TRACY DARUE- A Thanksgiving tradition in our house is yeast rolls. My mom would mix these the night before, and bake them on Thanksgiving day.... more

New Money Saving App–FAVADO!

By ERIN TURNER- I recently discovered FAVADO--an app that can save you both TIME and MONEY--and just in time for the holiday shopping season! ... more

Homemade Buttermilk Ranch Dressing Recipe

By ERIN TURNER- If you have kids, then you know that Ranch Dip has far surpassed ketchup in the world of condiments. Here's my recipe for Homemade Buttermilk Ranch Dressing.... more

Kalamazoo Sliders–A New Spin On A Tailgating Favorite

By ARIANNA SOLIMENE-We’re here to share our recipe for the perfect beef slider, a crowd tested favorite you’re sure to love. The secret lies in the cheese and the pretzel bun.... more

Turkey Tips for the Perfect Thanksgiving Feast

By CHEF HOWARD KARP - Hopefully this recipe will help you prepare your best Thanksgiving turkey yet.... more

Homesteading Basics: How to Make Your Own Lard

By ERIN TURNER- Thinking about adding lard to your baking regimen? Consider making your own. With the help of a crockpot, it's super easy and it's perfect for melt-in-your-mouth pie crusts, cookies, and and mor... more

What Are You Cookin’ up for Crocktober Fest?

By ERIN TURNER- Time to pull out the crockpot for 'CROCKTOBER Fest'. Cooking in a crockpot offers the benefits of convenience and ease. Here are a couple of 'must make' crockpot recipes. ... more

Harvest Season Means Savings

By ERIN TURNER-I dedicate this week’s blog to this beautiful season we call “The Harvest”. Anyone who claims they are frugal loves this season. This is what we frugalites live for--ABUNDANCE!... more

Ice Cube Trays–a Frugal Gadget for Every Kitchen

By ERIN TURNER-Ever wonder what to do with leftover wine, buttermilk and other liquid items? Hate the thought of throwing them out? HELLO ice cube trays. It's a no-brainer and frugal way to save!... more

Dressing Up Downtown: Missoula Art Museum’s Upcoming Art Park

By MATT ANGLEN- Congratulations. You may not know it now, but you picked an awesome place to go to school. To help you get acquainted with Missoula, here’s a short list of awesomeness. ... more

Salmon With Sweet Corn Potato Hash

By JAMIE LIPHARDT - This is light, yet comforting as we transition from grilled meats and light salads to roasted meats and baked side dishes.... more

Gluten Free Blueberry and Huckleberry Cobbler

By BOB ZIMORINO - You’ve jumped on the Gluten Free bandwagon but aren’t thrilled with all of the gluten free products out there? This meal and recipe may change your mind.... more

Southern Style Buttermilk Biscuits

By CHEF TRACY DARUE - Biscuits are especially good to have around because they can accompany so many meals. Here's a tried-and-true recipe for Southern Style Buttermilk Biscuits.... more

The New Student’s Guide to Missoula’s Art Scene

By MATT ANGLEN- Congratulations. You may not know it now, but you picked an awesome place to go to school. To help you get acquainted with Missoula, here’s a short list of awesomeness. ... more

Easy, Healthy, and Homemade Chocolate Sauce

By ERIN TURNER-Yesterday was my son’s birthday and when I asked him what menu he wanted for his birthday dinner, he requested ice cream--and that means chocolate sauce! Here's an easy, healthy and frugal reci... more

Smoked Tomato Soup

During late summer, when your gardens are at their peak, this recipe is a nice remedy for an abundance of tomatoes and Swiss chard.... more

How to Make the Most of What’s Left of Summer in Missoula

By MATT ANGLEN- If you're like me and are desperately trying to make the most of these last few weeks of sunshine here in Missoula, here is a short list of things to get excited about: ... more

Fresh, Frugal, Back to School Lunch Ideas

By ERIN TURNER-Are you ready to dust off the lunch box as your kids head back to school this week? Here are some for packing fresh, healthy and frugal lunches for your kids!... more

Sugar Snap Peas with Lobster Salad

By CHEF HOWARD KARP-Here’s a refreshing summer salad that doesn’t use traditional leafy greens. Instead, it features garden fresh sugar snap peas made into a sweet puree sauce with coconut milk.... more

Stuffed Zucchini–A Frugal Seasonal Meal

By ERIN TURNER-The season of zucchini jokes has arrived. The gardens are knocking out zucchini like crazy and people are finding them on their doorsteps.... more

Flathead Cherries and Heirloom Tomato Tart

It’s time to celebrate our Flathead cherries and local tomatoes! This symphony of flavors screams summer with these two sweet-and-tart fruits that ripen at the same time.... more

Ricotta Stuffed Squash Blossoms

By JAMIE LIPHARDT - You will not only impress yourself with this dish, but also your garden friend and anyone else you decide to invite to dinner that night.... more

Homemade Pie Crust

By ERIN TURNER- It's western Montana Fair Time and with raspberries, huckleberries and strawberries all in season right now, it seems the perfect time for a pie! ... more

New Fireline Grill Opens at Splash Montana

Splash Montana is proud to announce the ALL NEW Fireline Grill, a mobile kitchen offering fresh, restaurant-quality food options to guests at Splash Montana and in Playfair. ... more

The Name Game

By ROB BREEDING - I used to correct people when they used the A word. Pronghorns are not true antelope, I’d explain, and are actually an animal in a family all by themselves.... more

Save Money With DIY Haircuts

By ERIN TURNER- With 3 boys, haircuts occur quite frequently around our house. Even if we just went to Cost Cutters we'd spend a fortune every month. Instead, here's a frugal, DIY haircut option. ... more

Budget Friendly Fruit Fly Killer

By ERIN TURNER-Love having the fruit sitting out for a quick walk-by snack for the kids but hate the the fruit flies? Here's a sure-fire and frugal way of killing them:... more

Rock the Hood: ZACC puts the ART in Block pARTy

By MATT ANGLEN-I love block parties. There’s something about sipping a beer and eating food from a truck in the middle of a normally busy street that just screams freedom.... more

Peach Pie and Pecan Crumble

BY CHEF HOWARD KARP-For the short time while peaches are in season, this recipe might just become your favorite fruit dessert, especially with this ultimate crumble-top.... more

Vote With Your Fork

By KRISTEN LEE-CHARLSON - One of our very core rights as human beings is challenged in this country on a daily basis. That is the freedom to choose the food(s) that we wish to raise, buy and consume.... more

Healthy, Frugal Spinach Smoothies

By ERIN TURNER-I’ve had lots of people asking me for my recipe for Green Smoothies. Since spinach season is at its peak right now, I thought I'd share my recipe.... more

Roasted Pepper Grilling Sauce

An alternative to the traditional Argentinean Chimichurri sauce for grilling this summer, this recipe has become my favorite Spanish summer sauce to use for grilled meats, fish and vegetables.... more

Garden City Brew Unveiled July 10; Benefits WORD

The Missoula County Tavern Owners Association as well as four local breweries are pleased to announce the next Garden City Community Brew-- Lemon Lager brewed by Big Sky Brewing Company. ... more

How to Eat Local & Stay Healthy

By KRISTEN LEE-CHARLSON -Eating local means contributing to the local economy. A dollar spent locally generates twice as much income for the local economy. When businesses are not owned locally, money leaves th... more

Miso Glazed Ahi Tuna

By JAMIE LIPHARDT - After procuring some sushi grade ahi tuna, I decided that indeed, Asian was the flavor profile I was in the mood for.... more

Chilled Yellow Corn Soup

By CHEF HOWARD KARP-Perfect for summertime get togethers and family style dinners, here’s a refreshing and tasty chilled soup that presents well with striking colorful garnishments.... more

Staying Motivated And Avoiding Coupon Burnout

By ERIN TURNER- Have you hit burn out in your couponing? Does the thought of clipping another coupon cause you to have a melt down? ... more

Local Artists and Missoula Food Bank Partner for Hunger Awareness

Empty Bowls, Full Souls is an annual hunger-awareness event hosted by Missoula Food Bank. This year’s event will take place at Ten Spoon Vineyard + Winery on Wednesday, June 25 from 6-8pm. ... more