All posts filed under: In the Kitchen

Coffee time with Banana Bread

Banana Bread

Today is National Banana Bread Day.  Banana Bread Day is one of those made-up holidays that I have way too much fun with.  I especially like to learn the history of the dish or recipe, it’s really fascinating how things develop. Banana Bread got it’s start during WWI when there were few ships to export the fruit from Hawaii.  People were looking for different ways to use bananas so that the fruit wouldn’t go to waste.  As they say, necessity is the mother of invention!  One of the first recorded recipes was printed in The Maui News on April 12, 1918. 2/3 banana 1/3 flour Yeast, coconut milk or water My favorite recipe isn’t nearly that old, I’ve had since about 2002.  It was hand written on a sheet of paper that ended up stained and torn from being pulled out so often.  I finally had to retype it before it disappeared completely.   While typing I realized that it’s one that you might really like too.  Rachel, who was working for us 15 years ago, …

Saag Paneer and Basmati Rice

Saag Paneer

They say that you eat with your eyes first.  I totally get that!  If something looks good, you expect it to taste good, and vice versa.  Unfortunately, to a lot of people this dish does not look good.  In fact, it can look a little bit slimy.  Don’t be fooled, it’s totally yummy!  The fragrant spices, mild spinach, tangy yogurt, and creamy Paneer are a heavenly combination.  Saag Paneer is a traditional East Indian dish with a balance of flavors. Paneer is the go-to cheese for weekly vegetarian nights at our house.  It is so versatile, I can use it in all types of dishes from Asian stir fry to sandwiches ( I will have to share that with you sometime). Saag Paneer Cut the Paneer in one inch cubes and place it in a seal-able bag. Mix the turmeric, cayenne, and salt in a small bowl.  Whisk in 3 tablespoons of oil. Pour the marinade in the bag with the Paneer and gently massage the bag to evenly distribute the marinade.  Let that marinate …

Creamy Peanut Butter Dip with Cinnamon Chips

Creamy Peanut Butter Dip

The thing uppermost in our minds on the farm right now is a snowstorm that hit this week.  We haven’t had a snowstorm close to this bad since 1995 and it makes all the jobs on the farm so much harder.  On the other hand, it is so beautiful that John and I were speechless as we were driving around the side roads.  Okay, John was speechless, I was busy pointing out the obvious: “Look at the snow!”  “Look at the icicles!”  “What are you looking at?  You should be watching the road!”  I’m very helpful that way. Since the parking lot is a mire of ice and snow, it’s been too dangerous to have the store open.  I miss my customers and my crew.  I also have way too much time on my hands so I’ve spent most of the week taking pictures of snow, icicles, and my cats.   I also had some fun playing with recipes, which my family is really, really happy about right now. Here’s a simple recipe that I’ve …

Chicken Nachos with Squeeze Cheese

Chicken Nachos

John and I are not very good about entertaining people in our home.  I say “John and I” so that he can shoulder part of the blame, that’s what husbands are for, even when they are blameless.  I get nervous about entertaining partly due to never realizing my unrealistic expectations of being the next Martha Stewart and partly due to the fact that anything I serve will probably include a liberal seasoning of cat hair.  If I could get all the cat hair under control…and if I could overcome my feelings of inadequacy…and if we had a football party…this is what I would serve. The Squeeze Cheese is a recipe that I have shared before but I am so in love with it that I had to share it again!  It is so fast and easy to make!  I like to keep a bottle in the fridge for those moments when I really need to squeeze some cheese on something.  That happens a lot. I made these nachos for my family a couple of times recently.  Something …

Low Carb Chicken Divan

Low Carb Chicken Divan

  In the middle of all the craziness of the last few months, I was asked to write an article for a Low Carb Magazine and share a recipe with their readers.  I was very honored and more than a bit intimidated, but since cheese is naturally low carb and since I have stacks and stacks of cheese recipes, I decided to do it.  As I was sorting through my recipes I realized that I love carbs. I really love carbs. My recipes have a lot of carbs! Did I mention that I am prediabetic and should watch my carbs?  Writing the article was convicting. Things have been a bit crazy starting in September with lots of little things going on. We remodeling the room over the garage.  Elizabeth (my blogging cohort) left to focus on her own business.  My daughter got married.  Our new creamery opened.  Little things like that. Okay, those aren’t little, those are big!  Then the holidays hit so my one month break from blogging stretched into four months. I missed this so much. …

Nokkelost Quiche

Nokkelost Quiche

I am really excited for you to meet two new kids on the block!  We are now making Havarti and Nokkelost. Nokkelost means “Key Cheese” in Norway and goes by the same name in Sweden.   It is very much like the popular Dutch Leyden.  Nokkelost is flavored with cumin, caraway, and cloves, making it perfect for a Christmas treat.  Close your eyes while you let it roll around on your tongue and visions of sugar plums will dance in your head.  It’s also one of the prettiest cheeses we have (don’t tell the others, they might get jealous). Look for Nokkelost in select grocery store chains around the Pacific Northwest during the holidays.  Don’t worry, you don’t have to wait for Christmas to enjoy this cheese!  Nokkelost is available right now at our Cheese Shop and at Everybody’s Store.   Everybody’s Store has it available online. We can talk about the Havarti next week, right now, let’s get baking! Nokkelost Quiche 1 unbaked pastry shell 10 ounces Nokkelost, grated 4 eggs, lightly beaten 1 pound Quark 4 …

Easy Spanakopita Pockets

Easy Spanakopita Pockets

Once again, my friend Linda from Sound Harvest Delivery shared a winning recipe with me.  I am always delighted to learn a new recipe! Spanakopita has never been a favorite recipe for me because of the fussy Phyllo dough.  I love the flavor, but making them can be tedious, especially if the dough is a bit dry.  This recipe makes it extra easy by using crescent roll dough but keeps the wonderful flavors of the traditional Greek appetizer. Spanakopita Pockets 10 oz. fresh spinach or 2 10 oz. packages frozen spinach 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped 4 oz. Appel Farms Feta of your choice 4 oz. Mozzarella 4 tablespoons Appel Farms Parmesan, divided 1 ½ teaspoon dill (or 1 tablespoon fresh dill) Salt & pepper to taste Pinch nutmeg 2 cans crescent rolls Steam and drain spinach. Chop coarsely. Sauté garlic in 2 tablespoons olive oil. Combine garlic, spinach, Feta, Mozzarella, 2 tablespoons of the Parmesan, dill, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lay foil onto cookie sheet and spray with non-stick spray. Roll crescent roll …

Fresh Curd Pizza

Fresh Curd Pizza

I am always looking for new and creative ways to cook with cheese.  The opportunities seem to be endless for this wonderful food.  Once in a while though, a new idea simply blows my mind.  I am continually in awe of the wonderful creativity people have in cooking, and art, and life.  Sometimes these ideas can be so simple and delightful that I wonder why I never heard of it before. John brought an idea to my attention recently that was ingenious in it’s simplicity.  One of the guys working on some construction here at the farm asked for a couple of pounds of Squeaky Cheese so that he could make pizza crust.  John’s reaction was “Pizza crust? Are you kidding?  Ruth needs to try this!”  So John ran over to tell me about it.  My reaction was, “Pizza crust? Are you kidding me?  I need to try this!”  You can tell we’ve been married a long time. Heath came to our little kitchen at the Cheese Shop and made Fresh Curd Pizza for us. Heath …

Blackberry Bundt Cake

Overnight Bundt Cake

I don’t know about you, but I am always looking for things that will make life easier.  I love to come home from work to a clean house, but who has time to do the cleaning?  Life should be enjoyed, and cleaning house is not on the top of my list of things to do when I get home from work.  It may be somewhere on the list near listening to political speeches or getting a root canal. So, I got Alfred. Alfred is my new best friend.  He’s an iRobot vacuum cleaner and he saves me from the daily dust mopping that is inherently necessary when you have pets and wood floors.  He really didn’t save me any time at first, since I spent the morning following him around and watching him.  It was much more entertaining than political speeches, trust me.   Another thing that saves time in the morning is this Overnight Blackberry Bundt Cake recipe.  You mix it up at night and pop it in the fridge.  Allowing the Quark time to absorb into …

Making Ravioli

Homemade Ravioli and Cheese Sauce

Homemade pasta is one of those things that seems intimidating until you try it, then you get hooked.  Seriously!  It’s just a few basic ingredients and a few simple steps.  If you get into this, then semolina flour is the best flour for pasta.  Semolina is a course flour with low gluten.  That means it is more difficult to work with, but the pasta holds it’s shape without stretching.  This pasta recipe, on the other hand, uses all purpose flour.  All purpose flour is easier to knead and roll out, plus most people have it in their pantry.  You can try your hand at pasta making before investing in special ingredients. Homemade Ravioli and Cheese Sauce Filling 2 cups Black Forest ham, finely diced 1 cup Maasdammer, shredded (or Emmentaler) 1 cup Quark 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped Mix all the ingredients, chill until ready. Ravioli 6 cups all purpose flour 6 eggs 3/4 cup water 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil 1/8 teaspoon salt Place the flour in a very large bowl and make a well in the …