Dave

Christmas Cookies, Aunt Mary Appler Rockets

Incredible Christmas cookies and Aunt Mary Appler, a little story

Christmas cookies

She was a woman of style and grace. Picture in your mind a black and white photograph from the 40s or 50s of the quintessential housewife with house guests. Always meticulously dressed, always ready to offer a cocktail or cup of coffee with appropriate appetizers.

Aunt Mary was Joanne’s aunt and, despite the fact I sported shoulder-length hair and a beard, she took a liking to me almost immediately. It was easy to – Follow Gromit’s Tracks

Cottage Pie? Shepherd’s Pie?

My mom made the best Shepard’s Pie that wasn’t

make-ahead meal cottage pie

Cottage pie? We always called them Sheperd’s pie but that wasn’t really what they were. They were Cottage Pies and there is a distinct and singular difference. A shepherd’s pie is made with lamb while a cottage pie is made with beef or pork…or a combination of the two. It can also have lamb but it would still be a cottage pie in my book. Does it matter? It may so to some, but not to me. I love either of them.

At Clean Slate Farm we try to make the most of what we harvest from the garden by preparing several different types of soup and freezing them in convenient two cup portions. It’s really a great meal to come into from the cold after barn chores or shoveling snow. Fall just seems to be the time when, like squirrels, we start stocking up on meals we can pull from the freezer, thaw, and heat. This Cottage Pie recipe is one that fits that task to perfection. – Follow Gromit’s Tracks

Dill Pickles, Easier than You Would Think

Easy Fermented Dill Pickles Start with Brine

dill pickles

Ages ago my uncle Bob made fermented dill pickles. He had this giant ceramic crock which he would fill with garlic, dill, mustard seed, coriander, small cucumbers that were quartered length-wise, and then covered in brine. He’d put a plate over the whole shebang to hold it all underwater and in a few weeks we’d be eating dill pickles. Best darn pickle I’ve ever had.

Uncle Bob’s dill pickles had a pretty hefty garlic kick. He loved the stuff and used it generously as he did with the umbels of dill. (Did you like that word? Umbel? Take a minute to learn something new and look it up.) I don’t know how much garlic and dill he used, they were the main flavors, but he always managed to use the perfect amount.

You can be eating fresh dill pickles in a few weeks. It’s incredibly easy and fast. In less than 15 minutes you can make your own dill pickles, honestly.

– Follow Gromit’s Tracks

© Copyright 2016 Clean Slate Farm by Dave and Joanne
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