Family Centered Kitchen

Cooking with Mama

©Nissa Gadbois | All rights reserved

Last week, Geo and I gathered about 5 pounds of crabapples from one of our trees and made some crabapple jam.  I love this time of year.  There is so much to remind us of God’s bounty, so much to be thankful for.   How blessed we are to be able to feed ourselves from our own land, from foods that grow wild all around us.

Besides food, we are surrounded by medicines.  The youngest five went down with a cold virus just three days after their older brother had surgery to repair a shattered knee.  I was able to make a strong medicinal tea from elderberries we harvested from around the barn.  I’m happy to say that they are all feeling better.

William, our 16 year old, is recovering beautifully from his surgery, too.  Thanks be to God.

And that crabapple jam?  It was delicious spread on our homemade sourdough bread. 

 

Crabapple Jam
A gorgeous, rich spread for toast or biscuits.
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Ingredients
  1. 5 lb fresh organic crabapples
  2. 1 1/2 c. water
  3. 1/2 c. apple cider vinegar (with mother)
  4. 1 1/2 c. raw honey, agave nectar, or organic sugar
Instructions
  1. Place fruit, water, and vinegar in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium high heat and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook fruit until they burst, about 20 minutes. Run fruit through a food mill or sieve. Push pulp through the sieve and discard skins and seeds. Place pulp back into the pot and add honey. Heat gently until honey is completely dissolved and incorporated.
  2. Using a jelly funnel, fill clean, hot jelly jars, leaving 1/2 inch of head space. Process in a hot water bath for 10-15 minutes. Remove and cool.
Notes
  1. This recipe results in a very thick jam. If you were to add mulling spices, you would have a beautiful crabapple butter. The flavour is astringent. Consider serving with butter or cream cheese, or on a piece of shortbread. It would also be lovely served alongside a beautifully roasted pork loin.
At Home With the Gadbois Family http://gadboisfamily.com/
Crabapples ©Nissa Gadbois

A Morning Cuppa for Winter

 

Chai Masala Coffee
Serves 4
Gorgeous to drink in the early morning quiet when the weather is cold and snowy outside.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 T ground ginger
  2. 2 T ground cardamom
  3. 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  4. 1 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  5. 1 1/2 tsp ground white or black pepper
  6. 3 T ground cinnamon
  7. 1/4 tsp saffron (optional)
  8. pinch salt
  9. 1/4 c organic brown sugar
  10. 2 c milk
  11. 2 c hot coffee
  12. Orange slices (optional)
Instructions
  1. If you have whole spices, so much the better. Lightly toast them, and then grind fresh when they've cooled a bit.
  2. Combine spices, brown sugar, and milk.
  3. Bring to the boil, turn off the heat and allow to steep for 3-5minutes.
  4. Add the hot coffee and garnish with a slice of orange.
Notes
  1. Check out the many varieties of coffee we have available on our shop at http://shop.renaissance-farms.com
At Home With the Gadbois Family http://gadboisfamily.com/

{Family Centered Kitchen}: Maple Walnut Pie

You can find the recipe for my Impossibly Flaky Pie Crust here.
 

Maple Walnut Pie
Serves 8
I came up with this recipe for our son Louis' tenth birthday. We love pecan pie, and this is a twist on that classic, made with our own maple syrup. It's bound to become a family favourite.
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Prep Time
1 hr 10 min
Total Time
2 hr
Prep Time
1 hr 10 min
Total Time
2 hr
Ingredients
  1. 1 c maple syrup (use the real thing - NO substitutes)
  2. 1/2 c sugar (we use maple sugar or organic raw)
  3. 3 large eggs
  4. 3 T butter, melted
  5. 1 T flour
  6. 1 tsp vanilla paste (or extract)
  7. 1/2 recipe Impossibly Flaky Pie Crust
  8. 1 1/2 c walnuts (halves or chopped)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 450°F
  2. In a mixing bowl, blend syrup, sugar, eggs, milk, flour, and vanilla paste. Place walnuts in the crust and pour the syrup mixture over all. Rearrange nuts if needed.
  3. Bake 10 minutes at 450°. Reduce temperature to 350° and bake a further 30-35 minutes.
  4. Cool on a rack. Serve with whipped cream.
Notes
  1. Variation: spread melted unsweetened dark chocolate on the base of the pie crust or sprinkle dark chocolate mini chips or shards before pouring in the filling.
At Home With the Gadbois Family http://gadboisfamily.com/

She Blooms

The Rose is without an explanation; She blooms, because She blooms – Angelus Silesius
Rosa Rugosa | ©Nissa Gadbois
 

This beauty was overlooked on our farm up until this year.  But the goats noticed her before I did.  I’m horrified at what they’ve done to the lower half of her.  She is a venerable shrub – rather enormous.  Once she has done blooming, I will make some cuttings and give her children pride of place in our gardens.  Not only is this Rosa Rugosa a beautiful thing, it is also a very useful culinary plant.  You can make so much from the petals, but also from the great big hips that come at the end of the season.  You can make everything from an elegant syrup to a luscious dressing for poultry.

If you would like my Rose Recipes eBook, please make a gift of $25 or more.  Proceeds support our farm and ministries.

Summer Sausage Skillet

Summer Sausage Skillet
Serves 12
Super easy and nutritious luncheon or dinner.
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Cook Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 4 lb. bratwurst
  2. butter or ghee
  3. 3 large shallots (or one small onion), sliced
  4. 2 T garlic, chopped
  5. 4 lb mixed greens (kale, collard, mustard, spinach, rabe, etc.), chopped
  6. salt and pepper to taste
  7. pinch nutmeg (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Place sausages on a shallow pan - a jelly roll pan is ideal. Cook until evenly browned and cooked through - about 20 minutes. Remove from pan, cool slightly and slice into 1" pieces. Set aside.
  3. In a large heavy-bottomed skillet, melt butter and sauté shallots and garlic until shallots are translucent. Add greens and a small amount of water to cover the bottom. Season with salt an pepper, and nutmeg if desired. Cover and let cook until greens are wilted.
  4. Add sausages to skillet. Heat through and serve.
Notes
  1. This is a great easy-to-make meal for those days when you want maximum impact for minimum effort. Serve with a side of fruit sauce or compote and you've covered all the flavour bases. You could also halve some cherry tomatoes and toss them in right before serving. We rarely eat potatoes anymore, but this would be delicious with mash on a rainy day.
  2. We prefer to use bratwurst with this recipe, but you use whatever sausages you like best.
At Home With the Gadbois Family http://gadboisfamily.com/
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