Category Archives: From our Farmhouse Kitchen

Homemade Boursin Covered in Christmas Jam

This is one of the easiest and most loved holiday appetizers. All you need to do is whip up a little herbed cream cheese in a food processor or blender, and then pour over a half jar of The Old Mill’s Christmas Jam. Something about the garlic, herbs, and saltiness of the cream cheese mixture known as “Boursin” partners just perfectly with the cranberries, pears, plums, oranges, and cinnamon in the sweet and irresistible jam. The cheese mixture makes enough for two rounds, so serve one and freeze the other. Or, gift it to a friend along with a jar of Christmas Jam! For big parties, make one large round, and cover it with the entire jar of jam.
Makes 8 servings
Prep time: 15 minutes
Chill time: 1 hour

Homemade Boursin:

1 small clove garlic, peeled
4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 tablespoon minced fresh chives or dill
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 jar (10.5 ounces) The Old Mill Christmas Jam
Whole wheat crackers for serving
Directions:
1. For the Boursin, drop the garlic clove into the bowl of a food processor or blender while the machine is running. Turn off the machine. Add the butter, cream cheese, chives or dill, parsley, salt, basil, thyme, and pepper. Blend in pulses until it is smooth.
2. Divide the mixture into two 5-ounce portions. Turn each portion into a ramekin or small bowl lined with plastic wrap. Press down on the mixture with a rubber spatula so that it packs into the ramekin or bowl. Cover the top with plastic wrap. Chill until firm, at least 1 hour.
3. To serve, unwrap one cheese mixture and turn out onto a platter. Spoon half of the contents of the Christmas Jam (about 2/3 cup) over the top. Serve with the whole wheat crackers of your choice. Store the other Boursin and rest of the jam in the refrigerator until time to serve again.
Note: In a pinch for a quick appetizer? Buy a 5-ounce round of Boursin cheese in the supermarket deli section, and pour a half jar of Christmas Jam over the top.

Sweet and Spicy Pumpkin Soup

Sweet and Spicy Pumpkin Soup

When the crisp fall temperatures make you hungry for soup, this is a fast and festive way to make pumpkin soup. It begins with canned pumpkin, but the added flavors of brown sugar, onion, and The Old Mill Devil’s Backbone Seasoning really crank it up a notch. It’s perfect dinner party food, too, and best of all, it can be made ahead and reheated just before serving.
Makes 6 to 8 servings
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 25 to 30 minutes
Ingredients:
3 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cups chopped, peeled raw potatoes
1 cup coconut milk
1 cup cooked, mashed fresh or canned pumpkin
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon The Old Mill Devil’s Backbone Seasoning (or your favorite hot pepper seasoning blend)
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
Garnish:
1/4 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or cilantro
Directions:
1. Place the oil in a 3-quart saucepan or soup pot over medium heat. Add the onions, and stir and cook until the onions are soft and lightly browned around the edges, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the potatoes, coconut milk, pumpkin, brown sugar, Devil’s Backbone seasoning, and chicken broth. Stir to combine. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover the pan, and let the mixture simmer until the potatoes are soft, about 25 minutes. Turn off the heat and uncover the pan.
2. When the mixture has cooled slightly, transfer half of it to a food processor fitted with a steel blade or to a blender. Purée in pulses until smooth. Turn the pureed soup into a bowl, and then puree the remaining half. Return all the pureed soup to the original saucepan. Taste the seasoning and adjust if needed, adding more salt or pepper if needed. Add a little more brown sugar if you like it sweeter.
3. To serve, reheat the soup over low heat just to a simmer. Ladle into serving bowls, and garnish with a small dollop of sour cream or plain yogurt. Sprinkle chopped parsley or cilantro over the top.

Old Mill Apple Skillet Cobbler

Start with fresh apples and an iron skillet and you wind up with an irresistible cobbler!

Old Mill Apple Skillet Cobbler

Makes 8 to 12 servings
Ingredients:
2 9-inch pie crusts (see recipe below)
8 medium apples, peeled, cored and sliced 1/3-inch thick
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
4 tablespoons butter, cold, cut into pieces
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
Directions:
  1. Place a rack in the center of the oven, and preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Roll the pie pastry out to two 9-inch rounds. (Or use two pre-made crusts.)
  2. Place one of the pastry rounds in a 10-inch cast iron skillet. Pile the apples into the skillet evenly. Sprinkle the 1/2 cup sugar over the top. Sprinkle on the cinnamon. Distribute the cold pieces of butter across the top.
  3. Cut the remaining round of pie pastry into 1-inch strips. Lay 4 to 5 strips across the top of the apples, leaving a couple inches in between each one. With the remaining strips weave them in an over-and-under fashion to create a lattice pattern. Pinch the edges of the lattice strips to seal them to the bottom crust. Tuck any excess crust under to finish the edges. If desired, scallop the edges or press the edges down with the tines of a fork to create a finished look.
  4. Brush the egg on top of the pie crust. Sprinkle the top of the crust with the tablespoon of sugar. Place the cobbler in the oven.
  5. Bake the cobbler 10 minutes, until golden brown, then reduce the heat to 350 degrees and bake until the filling is bubbly and the apples are soft, about 45 to 50 minutes. Cover the cobbler lightly with foil if it starts to get too brown. Remove from the oven, and let it rest for 30 minutes. Spoon warm into serving bowls and serve with vanilla ice cream.

Homemade Pie Crust

Makes two 9-inch crusts
Ingredients:
2 1/2 cups Old Mill Unbleached Plain Flour, plus extra for rolling
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup vegetable shortening, chilled
4 tablespoons very cold water
Directions:
Place the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl, and stir to combine. Cut the shortening into small pieces and distribute over the flour. Cut into the flour using a pastry blender or two knives until the mixture looks like coarse meal. Sprinkle water over the mixture and stir with a fork until the mixture holds together. If still crumbly, add a little more water. Divide into two balls and place each on a sheet of plastic wrap or waxed paper. Press down on the balls to flatten, wrap securely, and chill 1 hour.
When ready to roll, place the dough rounds on a lightly floured board and roll to 1/8-inch thickness.

Easy Hushpuppies for Your Next Fish Fry

As summer winds down, weekends become even more important for gatherings for family and friends. A weekend spent fishing can reel in more than just a good catch. Around here, we have lots of favorite fishing spots, but you don’t have to catch it to enjoy it. As a matter of fact, the conversations in the kitchen and around the table make it all taste better anyway. We love a good fish fry and we like to experiment with flavors, so we’ve taken inspiration from our Corn Fritters and added corn to the hushpuppies. It’s a great savory treat with just a hint of sweetness from the corn.

Easy Hushpuppies

Ingredients:
1 large egg
1/2 cup buttermilk
3 tablespoons fresh corn kernels
1 tablespoon finely chopped jalapeno or bell pepper
1 tablespoon finely chopped onion, if desired
Vegetable oil for frying
Directions:
Place the hushpuppy mix, egg, and buttermilk in a mixing bowl. Stir with a fork just to combine. Fold in the corn, pepper, and onion, if desired. Set aside.
Place enough oil in a large, heavy skillet or pot to measure 2 inches deep. Heat over medium-high until the oil is hot, 365 degrees on a thermometer. Scoop or spoon generous tablespoons into the hot oil. Cook, turning once, until golden brown, about 3 minutes.
Makes 12 hush puppies.
We also have a great Catfish Breading, so stock up on both!