Monthly Archives: July 2016

Huckleberry

This summer I made the long trek to visit my sister Kelsey in Wyoming. While in Wyoming we made a quick trip down to Park City, Utah. What a cool, fun, historic town! Park City is home to the United States’ largest independent film festival, the Sundance Film Festival, home of the United States Ski Team, and a ton of other rich history! The town boomed in the late 1880’s when silver and gold were found and many miners flocked to the bountiful mountains to stake their claim. 

Park City oozes luxury. It’s buildings, restaurants and shops all offer a rich experience. But the true wealth found here, was the time I got to spend with my mom and sisters. It was a great girls weekend and definitely packed with new experiences that were worth their weight in gold. Focusing on moments and taking the time to step back and see how valuable they can be has helped me to really slow down and enjoy different journeys that I have embarked on this summer. So even if I did have to drive 13 hours to see my sister, it was all worth it at the end of the day because of the many memories we made along the way. 

These pinwheel cookies offer the same sweet richness the radiates from Park City’s mountain slopes. The orange citrus flavor pairs perfectly with the huckleberry jam. The cream cheese in the pastry dough creates a flaky, crispy crust that melts in your mouth. To top it all off, a perfect sprinkling of powdered sugar (to represent all that glorious snow that Park City usually hosts). These cookies can be made with any type of jam or jelly and they will defiantly add “value” to your summer menus. I will leave it up to you to add wealth in experiences and memories. 

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Orange Huckleberry Pinwheel Cookies

INGREDIENTS
Pastry
8 oz. cream cheese, softened 
2 sticks of unsalted butter, softened 
1/4 t. salt
2. c. flour
1 T. orange zest
1/4 c. powdered sugar for dusting

Filling
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2. c. powdered sugar
1 t. vanilla 
Huckleberry jam (or jam of your choice)

GUIDANCE
Prepare filling, by mixing cream cheese and butter until fluffy. Gradually add flour and salt until well combined. Mix in orange zest and divide dough into four discs. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 5 hours or overnight. 

Prepare filling by beating together cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla. Take dough out of refridgerator for a few minutes and dust your work surface with powdered sugar. Roll dough to 1/4 inch thick. Cut 3×3 inch squares and make 1 inch diagonal cuts in each corner. Transfer cookies to a parchment lined cookie sheet. Add 1/2 teaspoon of filling and 1/2 teaspoon of jam to each center. Bring every other corner of the dough to the center and press to seal. Bake for 12-15 minutes in a preheated 375 degree oven. 

Cool cookies on a cooking rack and dust generously with powdered sugar.

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IceCream

It’s today! National Ice Cream Day is today! To celebrate we savored some tasty treats from Java Cow Coffee and Ice Cream in Park City, Utah this weekend. I will have more for you soon from our fun trip to Utah (Huckleberry Pinwheel Cookies and some Olympic fun), but first before our ice cream melts. We devoured the honey lavender ice cream and chocolate ice cream at Java Cow. The honey lavender was so delicious, it smelled like the sweet scent of lavender but was mixed with the perfect notes of honey to satisfy my sweet tooth. My sister Riley loved the plain jane chocolate ice cream. I could tell by the looks of it that it was extra creamy and decadent. Here are a few ice cream recipes here, here, and here to help you keep cool. We ate our ice cream in golden, crispy waffle cones, but I wanted to share this fun idea to eat your ice cream in a taco! Here is a fun recipe to try with your ice cream. 

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If ice cream isn’t cool enough, here are a few other tips on how to keep your cool in life. 

  1. Look for the big picture – the next time you are super stressed, stop and ask yourself if this will affect you in an hour, a day, one week, or a year. It’s likely it won’t, so don’t let it control you. 
  2. Worry about what you CAN control – often times I see people that are so worried about things in their life that they have no control over. Focus on those elements you can control, your attitude, the way you present yourself, and your actions. 
  3. Practice patience – practicing patience allows you to learn how to stay calm when stress knocks on your door. So wait in the longest line or walk inside to get your food to go.
  4. Take deep breaths – when you find yourself getting anxious take a deep breath. Breathe in for 10 seconds through your nose and breathe out through your mouth  for ten seconds. I love to teach my students how to breathe in (smell the flowers) and breath out (pull a long piece of spaghetti out). Having the visualization is a great reminder of how to take a slow, deep breath. 

How are you staying cool for National Ice Cream Day? Thanks to my sister Riley for being our ice cream taste tester. I heard it was a tough gig. 

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Bruschetta6

Mother nature can create so much beauty in the world and with an instant she can destroy some of that beauty. This past weekend mother nature took a toll on the small town where we live. A strong hail storm rolled through our town, matched with high winds that devastated my sweet little garden that I have worked so hard on this past summer. Thankfully, no one was hurt during the storm. Many houses lost siding and windows, cars were totaled and debris was cast every which way. Here are a few photos of what the aftermath looked like. 

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These are a few snaps of my garden pre-hail. Wasn’t it beautiful? After the hail my dreams of fresh salsa, stuffed peppers, jalapeƱo poppers, tomato soup, potato dumplings, crisp salads and fresh herbs were all gone in an instant. 

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But, the best part of this whole experience was watching our town come together to rebuild and seeing the regrowth start to bloom. One of my favorite quotes is, “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass…It’s about learning to dance in the rain.” When times are difficult, this quote helps me to remember that even though life throws us curve balls every once and a while, we have to adapt and move forward.

I had so many people offer their garden produce, so I hope to still bring you some delicious, fresh garden recipes soon. So in the spirit of regrowth, I went to my mom’s garden to make my favorite bruschetta recipe! This recipe is reminiscent of my favorite bruschetta from a deli in New York and it is best with fresh ingredients.

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Best Bruschetta Ever

INGREDIENTS

6 roma tomatoes
1/2 c. red onion
3 cloves of garlic
7 basil leaves
1 t. balsamic vinegar
1/4 c. olive oil
1 baguette
1 t. salt
1/2 t. pepper
parmesan reggiano cheese

GUIDANCE

Slice your baguette into 1/4 inch slices and brush with olive oil. Broil until browned. Once you remove the bread slices, rub each slice with a clove of garlic. Next chop your bruschetta ingredients. Cut up the onion, garlic, and basil into small pieces. Slice the tomatoes in half and scoop the seeds out. Cut the tomatoes into larger chunks. Mix the tomatoes, onions, garlic, basic, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar. Season with salt and pepper and scoop onto baguette slices. Garnish with parmesan and serve. 

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Cobbler9

As June comes to a close (I can’t believe it’s July) I wanted to share a little adventure we took one afternoon. Sharing experiences with your children or family is so important on so many levels. Sometimes life consumes us and we are busy with school, sports, work, and activities, that we don’t take the time to stop and smell the roses. Being mindful about your time with loved ones in so crucial. In today’s society where we are extremely connected on an electronic level, making memories “unplugged” can have huge benefits for your mental health. 

Our mini adventure went like this. We went down to a friend’s ranch one afternoon to pick JUNEBERRIES! Juneberries are a tasty berry native to North America. They are also sometimes known as saskatoon berries and they grown in the northern United States and Canada. They look similar to a blueberry but taste like a mild blackberry. We had fun picking these (and eating them), although it did take some time to fill our big basket!

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Once we got home, I was so excited to cook something with these delicious berries. I think they would be delicious in a pie, muffins, bread, cake, kuchen, but I ultimately decided to make a cobbler. This cobbler is a cinch to whip up! First we made the biscuit topping, then simmered the berries with a mixture orange zest, orange juice, and sugar. Each mini skillet was then filled with the berry goodness and topped with the biscuit mix to bake! We added ice cream on our cobblers. These mini skillets are perfect portions for guests or kiddos because everyone gets their own! I found my mini skillets here. You could also adapt this recipe and make one large cobbler too. Adventure awaits, what adventure will you take today?

Special thanks to the Schettler family for the yummy juneberries and lots of exciting adventure!

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Juneberry Cobbler Mini Skillets

INGREDIENTS
1 c. plus 2 T. flour
3/4 c. plus 3 T. sugar
1 1/4 t. baking powder
3 T. cold, unsalted butter 
1 egg
1/4 c. heavy cream
3 c. juneberries
1 t. orange zest
1/2 c. orange juice

GUIDANCE
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix the 1 cup of flour with 3 tablespoons of sugar and the baking powder. Add the butter and using your hands, mix the mixture until it resembles course meal. Add the egg and cream and mix to form a soft dough. 

In a cast iron skillet combine the juneberries, 3/4 cup sugar, orange zest, and 2 tablespoons of flour. Stir to coat, pour over the orange juice and simmer at medium low heat until the fruit mixture boils. Once boiling, simmer for two minutes more and remove from the heat. Coat each mini skillet with the fruit mixture to fill the bottom. Add tablespoon size balls of the dough to the top of each skillet. There should be 4 to 5 dough drops on each. Cook mini skillets for 18-20 minutes, or until the dough is browned on the top. If cooking in a large cast iron skillet, cook for 16-18 minutes. Remove from oven and let stand for 15-20 minutes. Serve warm, with your favorite ice cream if desired. 

Cobbler

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