Showing posts from May, 2020

Summer Foraging Recipe: Elderberry-Blueberry Jam with Chia Seeds

In the woodland valleys of Central California, Elderflower trees have been in bloom all spring with their prolific, lacy white blossoms.  I've enjoyed making Elderflower syrup, candied elderflowers and sweet Elderflower Tempura.  A few days ago, I noticed that some of the trees are starting to bear fruit -- diminutive, tart little berries, deep purplish-blue growing in heavy clusters.  

Inspired by a love of biscuits and jam, foraging, and adapted from a recipe from Simply Beyond Herbs, I whipped up a simple and delicious jam made from the foraged Elderberries, fresh blueberries and using chia seeds for a perfect jammy consistency.

Enjoy and Happy Foraging!
PrintWith ImageWithout Image Elderberry-Blueberry Chia JamYield: One half-pint jarAuthor: Jenn Erickson Prep time: 10 MCook time: 10 MTotal time: 20 M An easy and delicious sweet-tart jam to make from foraged Elderberries. Ingredients:1 1/2 cups elderberries, rinsedPinch of salt1 cup blueberries, rinsed2 Tablespoons Chia Seeds1/2 Tabl…

Honeysuckle Rose Gin & Tonic

Here's to Summer with a perfect cocktail to toast the end of the school year -- A Honeysuckle Rose Gin & Tonic.  A touch of homemade honeysuckle-lemon simple syrup and honeysuckle infused gin (or vodka if you prefer) make for a delightful twist on the classic!  

If you prefer a vodka tonic, replace the gin in the recipe with vodka.  Simple.

PrintWith ImageWithout Image Honeysuckle Rose Gin & TonicYield: 2Author: Jenn Erickson Prep time: 24 hourCook time: 10 MTotal time: 24 H & 10 M Fresh honeysuckle is used to infuse a lemon simple syrup as well as the gin (or vodka). The two come together with tonic and rose petals for a beautiful summertime cocktail. Ingredients:For the honeysuckle syrup 1 cup water1 cup granulated sugar2 cups rinsed honeysuckle flowersZest of 1/2 a small lemon For the honeysuckle infused Gin or Vodka 6 ounces gin* or vodka1 cup rinsed honeysuckle flowers For the cocktails 14 ounces tonic (keep it simple)*6 ounces honeysuckle infused vodka or gin (flowers stra…

Edible Flowers: Bachelor Buttons (+Avocado Toast with Creamy Herb Scrambled Eggs)

Edible flowers are everywhere this time of year!  Today, I'd like to introduce a new favorite of mine -- Bachelor Buttons. 

They're an easy-to-grow annual from the Asteraceae family, native to Europe and Asia and bloom from summer to early fall.  Depending on where you live, they may be called Cornflowers or Blue bonnets.  With a very subtle cucumber taste, I call them delicious!  Their vibrant color and mild taste make them a perfect garnish for both sweet and savory foods.

Thanks to my best pal, Kelly (who understands my taking a fancy to eating flowers) for gifting me a blossom; which after a day of beauty in a tiny vase on my windowsill, became the garnish for my avocado toast with creamy herb scrambled eggs.  A single bloom has dozens of smaller flower-like pieces, making them a very compact, yet bountiful source of culinary adornment.

I'm not going to tell you how to make Avocado Toast (hint:  it's avocado and toast), but I am happy to share how I put this parti…

How to Make Authentic Mole -- The Original AwesomeSauce (+Enchilada Recipe)

Three of my adopted children are of Mexican (Yucatan) descent and my eldest son, who is passionate about cooking, asked to learn how to make authentic mole for his "Family Heritage" culinary project.  After doing my research and culling the best of the best recipes, we made a batch of the most incredible mole I've ever tasted. 

With more than 30 ingredients, it's not a quick and easy recipe, but the results are 100% worth it and can make more than one full meal.  The depth of this sauce is incredible.  The flavors are so exquisitely blended that your taste buds will be incredibly blissed out. 

The best part of this recipe is that it not only makes one meal (a boatload of sauce with chicken that you load into warm tortillas with rice), but you end up with enough sauce to make enchiladas and then maybe even a little bit more.  My kids have been putting it over tamales and their breakfast eggs in the morning. 

This literal AwesomeSauce has become a family favorite and a sa…

Nostalgia Food: Old Fashioned Apple Hand Pies

Who doesn't love a pie that you can eat with one hand while vacuuming, updating a resume, getting a child down for a nap, helping another child with a history report, and folding laundry with the other?  Clearly, only people who don't like pie, and this isn't for them.  This is for us: Pie People.

For me, the pocket pie obsession started in childhood with the iconic, mouth scalding  MacDonalds apple pies.  If you were around in the 1970s, you'll remember: crisp & flaky, buttery & slightly salty, with blistered crusts that concealed a molten center of perfect apple pie filling.  If you possessed the willpower to wait for the lava interior to cool, you were rewarded with the greatest American invention since the fast food burger AND the apple pie together, which in a weird sort of way, they were; after all, they were fried in beef fat.  Those things were pure magic (or at least that's what my 6-year old self thought).

These days, I'm not so into the fast fo…