books

QUENCH

 

HANDMADE GATHERINGS

 

A YEAR OF PIES!

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: HOME DAIRY

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: KEEPING BEES

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: CANNING & PRESERVING

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: KEEPING CHICKENS


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  • What better way to clear out a case of the Mondays than a giveaway?! See that lovely locally-made wooden bag dryer there on my wall? Want to win one of your own (you do, trust me)? Pop on over to small measure to enter. Link is in my profile.
  • This guy right here? While he might be growing bigger every day, the truth is that becoming a mother has helped me to grow. To be more present. To be more patient. To be more empathic. As I tell all my soon-to-be-mama friends, parenthood is the toughest work you'll ever do, with by far the biggest payoff. The lovin', and the learning, are so, so good. Happy Monday, friends.
  • Today was a good day. This view, from the top of our road, certainly helped make it so.
  • I think the 48-hour flu I've been fighting has finally succumbed to my assault of grapefruit seed extract, osha root, propolis, elderberry syrup, Oscillococinum, apple cider vinegar, rose hips, hibiscus, ginger/lemon/honey/cayenne tea, and neti pot with goldenseal tincture. I don't take getting sick sitting down. And now, a winter storm, possibly. Bring it, I say. Happy weekending, friends!!!
  • This guy.
  • I've been waiting, for a book like this, to come into my life. Whoa. Picked this up a few weeks ago at @screendoorasheville as a New Year's gift to @glennbenglish. Just started reading it myself and it couldn't possibly be more of what I need to see, right now. Completely on point, wholly attuned to what I'm presently sensing and curious about and inspired by, and infinitely humbling.
  • Warm enough today to play soccer down in our lower field, do a bit of weeding in the garden, and push a nearly-too-big 4 year-old in his
  • New year, new moons, new calendars. Right on, right on.
  • @shelterprotectsyou has been posting images of the wedding she and @sheltercollective had here in September all week. They built this altar for the ceremony, and it's still here, just past the house, on the way to the chicken coop. We pass it every day. Some days, I casually note its beauty and the way it feels like an outdoor church here in our forested cove. Other days I barely register it as I scurry about, doing this and that around the property. Today, though, in the stark, grey, drizzly setting, it was quietly regal. Happy to have had her visuals prompt me to stop, look, and listen to this physical testament to love.
  • The chickens told me they much prefer the rain this week to last week's frigid weather, thank you very much. I couldn't agree more.
  • These potatoes @tableasheville changed my culinary life. They called them hash browns, but they were unlike any I'd had before. Par-baked perhaps, smashed into halves I'm guessing, and then roasted and maybe finished with a quick fry in the skillet and scattered with large sea salt granules? Whatever the method, the result was a creamy, yellow center and a crispy, salty exterior. Quite possibly the best hash browns I've ever had.
  • This caramelized cinnamon citrus

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Monthly Archives: September 2012

A Friend In Pie: Beatrice Peltre

Béatrice Peltre is adorable. I’ll begin this post on that simple fact. From her clothes to her aprons to her photo props, the woman is the very picture of uncompromising, impeccable adorability (Is that a word? It is now).

When she generously agreed to provide me with a recipe for A Year of Pies, I was over the moon. THE Béatrice Peltre, she of the much-lauded, much-loved La Tartine Gourmande, in my little pie book?! Holy wow! Her spring-centric recipe for Watercress, Appenzeller Cheese and Smoked Salmon Tart is one you’ll prize for many, many moons.

If you aren’t familiar with Béa’s work, you must. go. now to her gorgeous blog. Full of exquisite, evocative images and tempting, gluten-free recipes, it’s no small wonder that La Tartine Gourmade garners so much praise and wins so many awards and “Best Of” categories. Béa’s book of the same name is a serious beauty, too. An all-around accomplished blogger, author, photographer, and food stylist, this woman knows what she’s doing, on so very many levels.

Thank you, Béa, for your contribution to the book. Having your voice and recipe present is such a treasure!

 

*Image from Eat Boutique.

Sorghum Smitten

Although I was born outside of Chicago, in Joliet, Illinois, I’ve spent the greater part of my life in the southeastern U.S.. As a Southerner, then, I’ve long been privy to bits of commonly known regional information. Which is to say that I’m well aware that the sole vowel in the color “pink” is often swapped out with an “a” when said aloud (say it with me now-”Pank”), that the term “Darlin’” can be both a term of endearment and a reproach, and that there are very clearly drawn lines in the sand when it comes to the preparation of BBQ (the war of saucy versus vinegar rages large).

What I’ve been less schooled on, however, is sorghum. Though the long-running sweetener indigenous to the region before the sugar cane barons pushed it out, sorghum wasn’t part of my southern roots cuisine. Until this past year, that is. Hubs and I discovered several local producers of the grass-related sweetener and have been smitten ever since. So much so, in fact, that we offered a 3-part series of recipes showcasing all things sorghum last winter. If you missed them, here’s what we shared:

*Sorghum-Roasted Short Ribs with Ponzu Citrus Fennel Slaw

*Sorghum & Bourbon Salmon with Brussels Sprouts Braised In Sorghum & Hard Cider

*Sorghum-Glazed Pork Chops with Sorghum Collards

Sorghum is having a renaissance of sorts, it would seem. We’re not the only ones taking notice, either. NPR did a bit on the cane sweetener last week. The Local Palate, a magazine based out of Charleston, SC, has a Caramelized Apple Upside Down Cornbread Cake featuring the sticky stuff that will definitely be coming out of my oven.  Our chocolate buddies, Jael & Dan, are even offering a Sorghum Caramel Truffle (go get it, now!).

If you haven’t yet heard of sorghum, don’t be surprised if you do soon. It’s versatile, delicious, and domestically-produced.

Consider yourself now properly Southern-schooled.

Weekend Review

Happy Monday, friends! Hope you had a great weekend. Ours was filled with, well, food, mostly!

We held another gathering for the new book. This one had both a farmer’s market and kiddo emphasis, so there was a good deal of seasonally appropriate winter squash-, swiss chard-, and apple-eating happening. The littles also got their craft on, getting almost as much paint on their projects as on their fingers and clothes!

Hubs whipped up that scrumptious sandwich above. It was packed to the gills with braunschweiger (scratch-made from local meats by the Chop Shop), homemade apple-fennel slaw, my bread &  butter pickles, and raw gouda. A nice little autumn meal, washed down with hard cider.

And my little peanut sauce and I can’t stop eating pretzels and taking pictures of ourselves in photo booth. Love that wild guy, so, so much!

We’re also listening to this, this, and this, on repeat. I’m a repeat song-listening offender. It can’t be helped.

Hope your week ahead is a good one!

What I’m Digging

Happy Friday, friends! I’m loving all this fall crispness, aren’t you? I even bought a new pair of jeans, my first in 7 years! And some Land’s End wool sweaters I scored over the summer for crazy cheap (we’re talking 80-85% off) with birthday money (thanks Mom and Nanny!) have even gone into rotation. Good stuff.

Here’s a smattering of this’s and that’s that caught my attention this week:

*NPR introduces me to the best music.
*Buttermilk has it’s day in the sun (but don’t call it a comeback, it’s been here for years!).
*Foraging restaurant in Chicago, I’ve got my sites on you (via Faryn).
*Win a trivet for your canner (it’s the last day to enter the giveaway!).
*Nutella! Stuffed! Brown Butter! Sea Salt! Chocolate! Chip! Cookies!  (via Joanna).
*Good Taste Gatherings is a great project.
*Women & Money looks like a great conference for local ladies.
*French apple cake (via Amanda).
*6 easy ways to boost your immune system this fall.
*Saving tomato seeds.
*10 green ways to get excited about autumn.

I’ve got a Small Measures post up on Design Sponge today. I’m chatting about using honey to care for summer weary feet. Go give your tired, haggard dogs a little liquid R&R.

Wherever you go this weekend, whatever you do, and whomever you do it with, may it be grand!

*Our tiny Englishman is getting his craft on, via Mama K’s Play Clay and Clementine Art crayons.

Smells Like Autumn

When the weather cools, I find myself wanting the scents of the season to envelop me. From the smell of leaf piles burning, to the ambrosial scent of a basket of fresh apples, once the mercury dips, I’m ready to pull on a cardigan and start baking gingerbread, apple pie, and hot, mulled cider.

That little apple you see above is riddled with whole cloves, a project I’m working on for my new book. By the way, said book now has a working title I can share with you-HANDMADE GATHERINGS: Recipes and Crafts for Seasonal Celebrations, Communal Potlucks, and Collaborative Parties. It’ll be out in Spring 2014, from Roost. SO exciting!

But back to that apple. It’s a pomander, an easy way of imbuing your home with the smell of cloves and fruit during the autumn and winter months, when the aroma of cloves is where it’s at. And they couldn’t be easier to make.

You simply get an apple (you can also do this with citrus fruits, which I do every winter, when fresh citrus comes into the markets), get a whole mess of cloves, and stud the fruit with it. If you riddle the entire fruit, it’ll last longer. If you have neither the inclination nor the patience (mine took 23 minutes, start to finish), you can also simply make a design, or your initials, or an image in the apple.

That’s it. Done. Scents of the season, in your home, in minutes. Sounds (and smells) good to me!