Wednesday, November 19, 2014

November?

How can this be mid-November?
It feels like mid-January - eek!

Disclaimer - no people or horses were harmed
while taking these pictures from inside my warm and cozy home......










Yikes!!!!

Till next time .............. staying fireside!


Monday, November 17, 2014

Get Crackering!

Have you ever tried those tasty
crackers that come in the rectangular pretty boxes
and have the words Rain and Coast 
on the label?
You know the ones that feature dried fruits and roasted nuts...
they're a wee bit expensive but oh so good?

I found a great "knock off" and easy recipe on line.
I also remember that Kathy from
Mennonite Girls Can Cook also made these recently!
My rosemary is still green in the herb garden
in spite of the recent snow and freezing temperatures,
so it is perfect to use for this.





It's as easy as making quick bread!



Rosemary, Pumpkin Seed and Cranberry Crackers
2 Cups All-purpose Flour
2 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
2 Cups buttermilk
¼ Cup brown sugar
¼ Cup honey
1 Cup dried Cranberries or Raisins
½ Cup chopped pecans
½ Cup roasted pumpkin seeds
¼ Cup sesame seeds
¼ Cup ground flax seeds
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary
Whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt and brown sugar. Stir together the buttermilk and honey and pour it into the flour, stir just till incorporated. Gently fold in the remaining ingredients just until blended. Pour the batter into 2 greased loaf pans and bake at 350F for 35 minutes or until golden and springs back to the touch.
Remove from the pans and cool. In fact, it’s best to totally cool them and even partially freeze them before slicing. You can even freeze them at this point and leave the slicing and crisping for another day.
Slice the loaves as thin as possible and lay the slices out in a single layer onto large ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 300F for 15 minutes on one side – flip them over and bake for another 10-15 minutes on the other side until crisp and deep golden.
This recipe makes approx. 8 dozen crackers. Store in an airtight container and try not to eat them all at once J.











These crackers are perfect for serving the Antipasto we
just made the other week.


Till next time ............. get crackering before the rosemary freezes solid!





Thursday, November 13, 2014

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup



It's the perfect time for Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
and Beer Bread Muffins!!

There's snow in the air ...... and on the pumpkins!

This is my favourite butternut squash soup recipe:



Peel and seed a Butternut Squash
Cut it into large chunks.
Add 2 unpeeled cloves of garlic and toss with 2 Tbsp. Olive Oil.
Pour this onto parchment lined baking sheet and sprinkle with fresh chopped Thyme and Summer Savory.
Season with a sprinkle of salt and pepper.
Roast at 425F for 25 minutes.
This smells so good while it roasts!









While the squash roasts, prepare the soup base by bringing 4 Cups of broth (vegetable or chicken) to a simmer.
Add 1 chopped apple, 2 Tbsp. grated ginger and a sprig of Thyme.
Continue to simmer till squash is roasted and apples are tender.






Remove the garlic peel. Combine the squash and garlic with the broth.  Cool slightly.
Use an immersion blender or stand blender to blend the mixture to a smooth and silky consistency.
My vitamix blender made short order of the blending - smooth as silk!
Heat thoroughly and serve with a splash of fresh cream or sour cream.

Serve with a quick bread muffin (we enjoy Beer Bread Muffins from the Muffin Mania Cookbook)




3 Cups flour
5 tsp. baking powder
3 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 Bottle of Beer
Shredded Cheese - optional

Combine dry ingredients.
Pour in the beer and stir with a fork till combined.
Scoop into greased muffin tin (makes 12 muffins)
 Top with some grated cheese.
Bake at 325F for 15-20 minutes.




Till next time .......... find some golden warm recipes to fight the dull drums of a snowy November day!