Category Archives: Recipes

Sour Cherry Margaritas

Sour Cherry Margaritas from Farmhouse38.com

Honestly, these have Valentine’s Day written all over them. But you know what? They also have ‘summer’ written all over them. And ‘delicious’.

For one beverage, you’ll need:

–2.5 oz. tart cherry juice (Whole Foods brand 365 Organic is my fav)

–2 oz. silver tequila

–1/2 oz. maraschino cherry liqueur

–1/2 oz. fresh lime juice

–1/2 oz. simple syrup

For garnish:

–2 tablespoons lime juice

–2 tablespoons unrefined sugar (but refined is doable, too–the unrefined looks a little better, IMO)

–1 tablespoon pink himalayan salt (or red hawaiian or something along those lines)

–3 maraschino or fresh cherries when in season, pre-soaked in tequila

Begin by mixing your garnish sugar and pink salt together in a small dish. Combine thoroughly. Then spread it evenly across the bottom of a salad plate, and on a second salad plate, place the lime juice. ‘Salt’ your glass rim by dipping the rim of the glass into the lime juice and then dabbing it into the salt mixture. Fill your salted glass with ice, and set aside. Drain your three garnish cherries and make sure they are not sopping wet with liquid, then roll them in the salt mixture and spear them on a toothpick.

In a shaker full of ice, combine all your beverage ingredients, and shake thoroughly. Strain into your salt-rimmed glass, garnish with your tooth-picked cherries, and you are ready to rock.

Cheers, friends!

Sour Cherry Margaritas from Farmhouse38.com

Yum.

Sour Cherry Margaritas from Farmhouse38.com

And yum.

Chocolate Chip Banana Pudding Cupcakes

Chocolate Chip Banana Pudding Cupcakes from Farmhouse38

Let me just start out by saying…I actually loathe banana. The taste, the smell–it just isn’t my thing. Ranks right up there with anchovies as an ingredient. But the Texan loves him some good ol’ fashion Banana Pudding, and it was his birthday…so…I didn’t make him that.  But I made him these instead!!

I went with the store-bought cake and pudding mix (I was pressed for time–I needed to limit my exposure to the banana-ness), but for a similar made-from-scratch amazing recipe, please check out the one from The Baker Chick, which I kind-of-sort-of loosely followed. She makes some good stuff.

To make 24 cupcakes, you will require:

1 box of yellow cake mix 

1 large box of banana-flavored pudding

2 very ripe bananas

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/3 cup coconut oil (or whatever oil you prefer)

1-1/4 cups water

6 oz (half a standard bag) of mini semi-sweet chocolate morsels

2 cups heavy whipping cream

1 tablespoon powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

24 standard-sized Nilla Wafer Cookies

24 mini-sized Nilla Wafer Cookies

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (or whatever your cake mix box tells you to), and go ahead and drop in cupcake liners into your cupcake tins.  The Baker Chick lines the bottom of the cupcake liners with either one large Nilla wafer, or several crumbled mini wafers in order to give the cupcake a nice little wafer crust.  This is a great idea.  Full disclosure: I forgot to do it.  Learn from my mistakes.

In a small bowl, mash up your bananas.

In a mixer, blend together your cake mix ingredients as directed on the package (usually eggs, water, and oil), only substitute the mashed bananas for the eggs.  I chose to use coconut oil as my oil (warmed it a bit first so that it was liquified). Once everything is blended, add half a bag of mini chocolate chips and mix thoroughly.

Go ahead and spoon the mixture evenly into your cupcake pans (you want to fill each liner just over halfway or so).  Pop them in the oven for 15-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the centers of the cupcakes come out clean.  Let the cupcakes cool on the counter.

Pudding time! In a stand mixer, mix the pudding as per the instructions on the box.  Which is basically mixing the mix with three cups of milk.  Let this set up for at least five minutes or so, and then stick it in the fridge.

In the center of each cupcake, cut out a nickel-sized cylinder (I just used a butter knife and winged it, even though I know there are fancy tools out there just for this sort of activity) down to the cookie crust. Once you’ve hollowed them out, fill the gaping cavern with about a tablespoon or so of pudding–enough to fill it completely but not overflow too much onto the cupcake surface.  Set the leftover pudding, as well as the pudding-filled cupcakes, in the fridge for safe-keeping.

To make the topping: chill the bowl and whisk attachment of your stand mixer in the fridge or freezer for a bit.  Once they’re good and cold and back on your mixer, add your heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla into the bowl and whip just until soft peaks form.  Now add 1/2 cup of the reserved banana pudding and blend until the whipped cream is pretty stiff.  Fill a piping bag and pipe the topping onto the cupcakes like frosting. Top with a sprinkle of mini chocolate chips and one mini wafer for a little cupcake flair.

It’s best to serve these immediately, or keep them in the fridge until ready to serve.  Warning: your fridge is going to smell like banana.  I’m just sayin’.

Chocolate Chip Banana Pudding Cupcakes from Farmhouse38

It’s always good when a cupcake oozes…usually…

Chocolate Chip Banana Pudding Cupcakes from Farmhouse38

More ooey-gooey goodness.

Caramel Bourbon Cake

Caramel Bourbon Cake from Farmhouse38In addition to the Cranberry-Lemon Squares, I went a little crazy and also made this cake for ‘First Thanksgiving’.  There is just really not much better than a cake with booze in it, is there?  No.  No there just isn’t.

The Caramel Bourbon Sauce is really quite insanely good.  This stuff would be so good in so many different applications, it makes my head hurt.  But that may also just be my bourbon hangover.

Bourbon Caramel Sauce from Farmhouse38

Jars of Caramel Bourbon Sauce: perfect holiday gift.  I’m just sayin’.

Sauce ingredients:

–1 cup sugar

–1/4 cup water

–1/2 cup heavy cream

–1-1/2 tablespoons bourbon (come on, you know you want to) (PS: we like Woodford Reserve, although the Texan about had a heart attack when I was ‘squandering’ it for cooking purposes.  It was worth it, I tell you.  No regrets.)

–1/4 teaspoon of sea salt

To make:

–Simmer the sugar and the water over medium heat, constantly swirling the pan for anywhere between 10-15 minutes, until your sugar mixture has reached a nice amber color.  Be real careful not to let it burn.  It’s easy to do.  Trust me.

–Remove from the heat and turn off the burner.

–Slowly add your cream, constantly stirring.

–Add bourbon and salt.

–Set the pan back on the turned-off burner and stir ingredients together for another minute or so.

–Transfer to a jar and let cool.  Keep it in your fridge until you’re ready for it.

Cake/frosting ingredients:

(instructions are for a two-layer cake.  I set out to make a four layer, so I doubled everything below…and then one of my layers bit the dust.  So three it is.  Three it is.)

For a two-layer cake:

–1-1/2 cups white sugar

–12 tablespoons softened butter

–3 eggs

–3 teaspoons vanilla extract

–2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour

–2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder

–1 teaspoon salt

–1-1/4 cups whole milk

–1 cup of Caramel Bourbon Sauce, cooled

–2 sticks softened unsalted butter

–4 cups powdered sugar

–2 tablespoons whole milk if your frosting is too dry

To make the cake:

–Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease two (or four, whatevs) 8×8 round baking pans.  Set aside.

–In a medium bowl, cream together the butter and the sugar.  Beat the eggs in, one at a time, and then keep beating on high speed for approximately 3 minutes, or until the mixture is fluffy and pale in color. Add the vanilla and stir.

–Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt together.

–Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture in three batches, alternating with the milk, starting and ending with the flour mixture.  Try not to take out your pent-up aggressions on the batter by over-beating it.  It did nothing to you.

–Pour the batter into the prepared pans evenly, smoothing the tops with the back of a spoon.

–Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Let the cake cool in the pans for 5-10 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack.

To make the frosting:

–Cream the butter until smooth and fluffy.  Add the powdered sugar a cup at a time and beat until well-combined.  Add 1/3 cup of the Caramel Bourbon Sauce and beat until smooth and fluffy.  Add 1-2 tablespoons of whole milk if your frosting seems a bit dry (mine did not).

Caramel Bourbon Buttercream from Farmhouse38

Yep. That’s right. I stuck my finger right on in there.

Assembling the cake:

It all comes down to this.  Take a deep breath.

Take your Caramel Bourbon Sauce out of the fridge awhile before you start the assembly.  Warm the sauce a bit, if you need to, so that it isn’t too thick.

Place the first layer of the cake on a stand, and, using a fork, poke a whole buncha holes all over the top surface of the cake.  Pour roughly 1/4 cup of the sauce across the surface of the hole-y cake, just enough to coat it well and soak in a bit.  Top with a hefty layer of frosting.

Now place the second layer, and do the same with the poking and the pouring and the frosting-ing. Reserve the last little bit of sauce.  When you are ready to serve, drizzle the cake with the remaining sauce, and sprinkle with sea salt.  Dig the heck in.

**Cake recipe adapted from thebakerchick.com

Cranberry-Lemon Squares via Southern Pink Lemonade

Cranberry-Lemon Squares from Southern Pink Lemonade via Farmhouse38So I Pinterest-stumbled upon this yummy recipe from a darling blog called Southern Pink Lemonade (you know you want to go visit just from that name).  I was convinced that I had to make this dessert for ‘First Thanksgiving’ (because we are all going to be scattered for actual Thanksgiving this year, my immediate family gathered this past weekend for what was dubbed ‘First Thanksgiving’.  I mean, why have just one?!).  I’m thrilled to have happened onto SouthernPinkLemonade.com because it is chock full of tasties–go and drop by, tell Heather we said hi, and poke around her recipes…you will not be disappointed!

Here’s the recipe, as written by Heather:

Ingredients:
Dough:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • zest of one lemon
  • 8 ounces (2 sticks) cold butter, cubed
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 Tablespoons-1/4 cup cold water
Filling:

  • 1- 12 ounce package fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • juice of one lemon
Direction:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a 9×13 baking dish with parchment paper. 
 
In the bowl of a food processor, add flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and lemon zest. Pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse until dough is crumbled into small pieces.
 
Move the crumbles to the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix in the egg and vanilla extract. Add water 1 tablespoon at a time until dough comes together (I only needed 2 tablespoons).
 
Press half of the dough in the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Set the remaining dough aside for the topping.
 
In a medium bowl, combine the sugar and cornstarch. Add cranberries and lemon juice. Stir to coat cranberries. Pour filling ingredients over the dough in the baking dish. Spread cranberries so that they are in a single layer. 
 
Crumble the remaining dough over the top of the cranberries. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the top and the sides are golden brown.
 
Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely. Once cooled, lift squares out of the baking dish using the parchment paper. Cut into squares.

- See more at: http://www.southernpinklemonade.com/2012/11/cranberry-lemon-squares.html

Cranberry-Lemon Squares from Southern Pink Lemonade via Farmhouse38

Mine didn’t turn out quite as purty as hers, but darn they taste good.

How Holiday Baking Looks at Farmhouse38

Everyone at our house was a big fan.

Put an Egg on It Giveaway

Put an Egg on It Giveaway from Farmhouse38

The giveaway is now live!  Along with a copy of Put an Egg on It , by Lara Ferroni (see my review of this fab cookbook here),  one lucky winner will also get a few of my most favorite kitchen accessories from World Market: a matching set that includes a chicken apron, dishtowel, and potholder, along with a cute blue frying pan, a yellow ceramic egg-holder, and a retro-inspired egg beater…Everything you need to whip up some tasty egg dishes straight out of your new cookbook!

Put an Egg on It Giveaway from Farmhouse38

We’ll be running the contest until Friday (11/15/13).  Enter by using the following link:

Put an Egg on It Giveaway

Good luck to all my egg-loving friends out there! :-)

***Congrats to our winner, Nichelle M.!!!***

Put an Egg on It

Put an Egg on It Book Review by Farmhouse38This book.  How could I pass up a chance to review this book?  Just…look at it!  Obviously, it’s full of recipes; breakfasts, lunches, appies, dinners, desserts, and cocktails.  And they all sound darned tempting…but also?  They LOOK darned tempting.  I am a sucker for gorgeous photography, and I was in such heaven perusing this collection.

Lara Ferroni is a food photographer and writer by trade (check out laraferroni.com for her impressive resume), and her love of food just bursts from every happy page of this cookbook.  Buttermilk Fried Chicken and Eggs?  Yes, please.  Havarti, Avocado, Serrano, and Egg Sandwich?  Yes, yes, yes, OMG yes.  Maple Meringue Doughnut Holes?  Sign me up.   Annnnd, did I mention there’s cocktails?  Done. I’m just done.

So I decided that the best way I could review a cookbook was to actually do a little cooking.  I seriously labored over what to choose, but ultimately, the Pumpkin Pots were calling my name.  What could be better to stuff my face with on a crisp fall evening?  Besides a cocktail (we’ll get to that, I promise). They are just too cute (and Lara is right about the name, it’s fun to say, especially after one of her cocktails).  You’ll have to grab a copy of the book for the exact recipe, but in a nutshell (or pumpkin shell, if you really want to split hairs), we’re talking spicy sausage, bread, eggs, and herbs all snuggled together in a tiny pumpkin.  Adorbs and delish.

Put an Egg on It Cookbook Review by Farmhouse38

Pumpkin Pots, Pumpkin Pots, Pumpkin Pots.

We all know I could not possibly not try out a cocktail recipe (or…all of the cocktail recipes…I’m not joking). But I if had to pick just one for this review, I would have to go with the Bumblebee Cocktail:

Put an Egg on It Cookbook Review by Farmhouse38

Oh, the gorgeousness!

It’s a rework of a vintage cocktail; dark rum, honey, citrus, and yes…egg whites.  Gotta put an egg on it, ya know.  Cheers to that!

You know what else we should cheers to?  Starting tomorrow, we’ll be doing an awesome giveaway of Put an Egg on It as the centerpiece of a fun little egg-cooking-themed prize package, including a few of my most favorite kitcheny things:

Put an Egg on It Giveaway from Farmhouse38

Tune in Friday (November 8, 2013) for the start of the contest!

Put an Egg on It can be found at most major booksellers, including Amazon.com.

For more information on the author, stop by laraferroni.com and follow her on Twitter.

All-Natural Goo-Remover: I’m a Fan

All Natural Goo Remover from Farmhouse38I don’t know why it is, but it seems like I am having to remove an awful lot of sticky labels around here. Perhaps it is my obsession with recycling old jars (and thus, having to constantly remove their labels).  But anyway…I’ve been using a lot of Goo Gone.  It works.  It really works…but…oh wow, do I loathe that smell (and all the chemicals that go into making that smell).  No matter how many times you soap up and wash it off, it just really clings to everything…I mean, who doesn’t love smelling like an awkward blend of kerosene and orange peel?  For a week.

So when the Pinterest led me to 7th House on the Left’s Non-Toxic Goo-Remover , I heard angels singing.  Not only was this possibly my pass to never having to use the toxic orange slime again, this version was made with coconut oil.  So it smells like coconuts.  Which I am OB. SESSED. WITH.

It’s ridiculously simple to make: equal parts organic virgin coconut oil (I tend to favor the Trader Joe’s variety) and baking soda.  Sign me up.  You simply microwave the coconut oil (only a few seconds, depending on how much you use) until it liquifies, and then mix it with the baking soda.  For this little recycled jam jar I used a half cup of each.  Once it was all mixed and poured into the jar, I stuck mine in the fridge to solidify it, and shook it every so often as it cooled to a paste.  You don’t actually have to put it in the fridge at all, I just did this to hurry it up.  Because coconut oil has antibacterial properties, I just keep the jar under my sink with all my other cleaning supplies.

To use, you just glob the paste on any goo you want to remove, let it soak in, and then scrape to remove.  Most times, when I am removing old jar labels, I will smear this stuff on, then put the whole jar in the dishwasher (because I’m lazy).  The label comes off in the wash, and the jar gets cleaned: two birds, one stone.  Or two stones, one bird, as I like to say.

Don’t get me wrong: I’m still keeping the orange stuff.  It has its place–and not for nothing, we have a long, long history together.  But I’m trying to move away from being so chemical co-dependent in my life…this is definitely one of those, ‘It’s not you, it’s me’ situations.  I’m sure that at some point I will stumble across something that may defy the powers of the coconut miracle paste, but as of yet, I haven’t found it.

Thanks, 7th House on the Left!!

Apple Pie Crème Brûlée

Apple Pie Crème Brûlée from Farmhouse38Is it obvious that I have a thing for crème brûlée?  (Please refer to this and this for clarification.) I just can’t quit it.  The chickens are enablers; their diligent egg-laying forces my hand.

This recipe is a yummy seasonal departure with its shortbread crust and layer of apple butter added to a classic vanilla bean custard.

You will need:

-2-1/2 cups heavy cream

- 1 whole vanilla bean

-7 large egg yolks

-1/2 cup granulated sugar

-6 to 12 shortbread cookies, depending on how big they are and how much cookie crust you want

-6 to 12 tablespoons of your favorite apple butter

-approx. 6 extra tablespoons of sugar to brûlée the tops

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.  Line a baking dish with a dish towel (this keeps the ramekins from sliding around once you fill the baking dish with water).  Set this aside.

Split the vanilla bean and place it in a medium saucepan, along with the cream, and put this on your stovetop over medium heat.  Warm the cream mixture slowly, until bubbles form around the edge of the pot.  Remove it from the heat, and let it sit while you go about your other business.

In a ziplock baggy, crush your shortbread cookies, and then line the bottoms of each ramekin with just enough crumbs to be a solid layer.  Next, spoon about a tablespoon or so of apple butter over the top of the crumbs–again, just enough to make a solid layer.  Place your ramekins in your prepared baking dish so that their sides don’t touch each other.  Personal space; it’s important.

In a stand mixer, whisk together the sugar and egg yolks until the mixture begins to thicken and turn slightly lighter in color.

Strain the cream mixture and then very, very, very slowly, add it in tiny bits to the sugar/egg mixture.  If you do this too fast, your eggs will scramble.  Scrambled eggs bad.  This process usually takes me a few minutes.  When everything is blended, divide the mixture evenly amongst your six prepared ramekins.  Carefully fill the baking dish with scalding hot water (either from the tap or from an already-boiled pot of water) so that the water line comes about halfway up the sides of the ramekins.

Put your baking dish on the middle rack of your oven and bake for 35-50 minutes or until the custard is set around the edges and wiggles only a tad in the very center.  Remove your baking dish from the oven, remove the ramekins from the the water bath, and let them cool a bit on the counter.  Refrigerate them for a few hours or up to three days.

When you are ready to serve, sprinkle about a tablespoon of sugar across the top of the custard so that there is a decent layer across the whole thing.  Fire up your brûlée torch, and holding your ramekin at a 45 degree angle, ease the flame across the sugar.  Once it starts to melt, start rotating your custard a bit so that the melted sugar rolls around and spreads nicely across the top.  Try not to catch anything other than the sugar on fire.  Especially your kitchen.  Don’t do that.

Let the sugar cool and serve immediately!

Apple Pie Crème Brûlée from Farmhouse38

Come to Mama.

1840 Farm’s Smoky Tomato Jam

1840 Farm's Smoky Tomato Jam via Farmhouse38

This hasn’t been a banner year for our tomato harvest, but nonetheless, we are fairly overrun with beautiful heirlooms at the moment.

Heirloom Tomatoes at Farmhouse38

Oh, the gorgeousness. It hurts the eyes!

I am always on high-alert for any recipe that I can use them in, and fortunately my good friends over at 1840 Farm have got my back on this (and also, incidentally, rival me in my relentless heirloom tomato obsession).

Holy-Mortgage-Lifter, this Smoky Tomato Jam Recipe is a keeper.  I didn’t fiddle with this recipe at all, so I am sending you to check it out on their site.  You don’t meddle with perfection.  You just don’t.

1840 Farm's Smoky Tomato Jam via Farmhouse38

Glorious.  Simply glorious.

It’s absolutely amazing served with a cheese course; aged cheddar, gouda, mozzarella, blue–it all works.  This jam is an equal-opportunity condiment.

1840 Farm's Smoky Tomato Jam via Farmhouse38

Perfection.

Heirloom Tomato Tart

Heirloom Tomato Tart from Farmhouse38

What to do with all those gorgeous tomatoes that the garden is happily churning out?  Well, put them in your face, somehow.

Heirloom Tomatoes from Farmhouse38I love me a good tomato pie or tart, and I found this gorgeous recipe over at myrecipes.com for an Herbed Tomato Tart.  I tweaked it a bit to work with what I had, but still, you get the picture.

Ingredients:

– Approx. 3 mediumish heirloom tomatoes

– 1/4 teaspoon salt

– 1) (17.3 oz) package of frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed

– 8 oz of shredded mozzarella cheese

– 4 oz of crumbled feta cheese

– 1 garlic clove, finely minced

– 1/4 cup finely chopped assorted herbs (I used sage, rosemary, and basil all straight outs the garden)

– 1/2 tablespoon olive oil

– sea salt to taste

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Finely slice the tomatoes and lay them out in a single layer on paper towels, sprinkle with the 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and let sit for a half hour or so to wick away the excess moisture.

Place one of your thawed pastry sheets (two come in the box) on an un-greased baking sheet.  From the remaining sheet, cut four 1-inch wide strips, and use these to build a frame around the edges of the first pastry sheet (refer to photo below).

Bake for around 14 minutes, or until the pastry starts to turn a golden brown.

Once it’s done, remove from the oven and sprinkle on your mozzarella and feta cheeses.  Sprinkle the minced garlic over this.  Blot the tops of the tomatoes with a paper towel, and then lay them out across the cheese in more or less a single layer.  Top this with your chopped herbs, and then drizzle your olive oil over it all.

Pop it back in the oven for another 14-15 minutes or until cheese is fully melted.  If you like a little extra salt in your craw, sprinkle some flaky sea salt over the top and serve immediately (though, I gotta say, it tastes pretty darned good cold, too).

Here’s a photo bomb of the process for ya:

Heirloom Tomato Tart from Farmhouse38

Sliced garden tomatoes drying like champions.  Thats a Tasmanian Yellow Blush, a Cherokee Purple, and a Bread and Salt for any of my fellow tomato freaks out there.

Heirloom Tomato Tart from Farmhouse38

Fresh basil, rosemary, and sage straight from the garden.

Heirloom Tomato Tart from Farmhouse38

Puff pastry dough frame going into the oven.

Heirloom Tomato Tart from Farmhouse38

All assembled for the final countdown.

Heirloom Tomato Tart from Farmhouse38

Fresh out of the oven and gorgeous. This sucker smells divine, too.

Heirloom Tomato Tart from Farmhouse38

Come on. So pretty!

Heirloom Tomato Tart from Farmhouse38

It’s just….good.

Holla, tomatoes!

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