Category Archives: From our Pottery House Cafe & Grille

Summer Panzanella Salad

One of our chef’s, Danielle Speelman, recently developed a new summer salad that everyone loves. It combines the best summer flavors and is a fresh Old Mill twist on a panzanella, with the cornbread croutons. She featured it on a recent visit to one of our local afternoon tv shows.

Watch her make it here: Summer Panzanella Salad

Summer Panzanella Salad

For salad:

4 cups of cubed day-old cornbread (Prepared from Old Mill Self Rising Yellow Cornmeal)

¼ cup salted butter

1 TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 red onion, sliced

1.5 cups of fresh corn (sliced from 2-3 ears)

½ TSP Cumin

½ TSP Farmhouse Kitchen Bourbon Smoked Paprika

½ TSP Salt

1 pint cherry tomatoes, cut into halves

1 medium avocado, pitted and cubed

2 cups of arugulaFresh basil, chopped

½ cup feta cheese

 

For dressing:

3 TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 TBSP Farmhouse Kitchen Honey Balsamic Vinegar

1 ½ TSP Farmhouse Kitchen Bourbon Maple Syrup

1 ½ TSP chipotle pepper in adobo sauce (to make spicier, include minced chipotle pepper)

Salt to taste

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place cornbread cubes on baking sheet, pouring melted butter over to coat. Toast in oven until golden brown and crispy 16-18 minutes, gently stirring pan halfway through (be careful not to toss the cornbread or it will crumble). Remove from oven and set aside.

Preheat olive oil in large sauté pan. Add red onion and cook 2 minutes until it starts to soften. Add corn kernels, cumin, paprika, and salt. Cook approximately 5 minutes until tender and fragrant. Set aside to cool slightly.

To prepare vinaigrette, combine all ingredients in mason jar or lid with a container. Shake until emulsified, or liquids have become one. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, toss together cooled corn mixture, sliced tomatoes, avocado, arugula, and cornbread croutons. Pour vinaigrette over to coat and toss gently. Garnish with fresh basil and feta cheese. Serve immediately.

Perfect light summer side dish or paired with grilled protein for a heartier entrée.

A Taste of Spring!

The first week of spring here in the Smoky Mountains brought us a couple of snowy days, but now that the weather’s warming up, we’re all coming down with severe cases of spring fever. And one of the best cures we know of is cake! So for our last entry for March – which is also National Flour Month – we offer you our Blueberry and Lemon Cornmeal Cake. Lightened with ricotta cheese and brightened with fresh berries and lemon juice, the batter features not only our freshly ground cornmeal, but also Old Mill’s all-purpose Plain Flour. It makes a simple but stunning addition to an Easter buffet or any other spring or summer occasion. Come autumn, you can easily turn this versatile recipe into a holiday cake by substituting fresh cranberries for the blueberries, similar to our Cranberry Orange Cornmeal Cake we offer online. This cake also freezes well, so if you like to do all your baking at one time and give home-baked items to friends and family, this will be a hit!

Blueberry and Lemon Cornmeal Cake

Makes: 12 to 16 servings

Ingredients:

Butter for prepping the pan

2 cups Old Mill Plain Flour

1 cup Old Mill Yellow Cornmeal

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

7 ounces (1 3/4 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

3 large eggs

1/4 cup Old Mill Pure Maple Syrup

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Grated zest of 1 lemon (1 teaspoon)

Juice of 1 lemon (2 tablespoons)

1 container (15 ounces) whole milk ricotta cheese, about 2 cups

2 1/2 cups fresh blueberries, divided use

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

Directions:

  1. Place a rack in the center of the oven, and preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9-inch springform pan with butter, and place the pan on a baking sheet and set aside.
  2. Place the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl, and stir to combine. Set aside.
  3. Place the butter in a large mixing bowl and beat on medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy, 30 seconds. Add the sugar, and beat on medium until the mixture is light and fluffy, about 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until each egg is incorporated, about 20 seconds each. Add the maple syrup, oil, and the grated lemon zest and juice. Blend on medium speed until well combined, 45 seconds.
  4. Turn about a third of the dry ingredients into the batter and blend on low until just incorporated. Add half of the ricotta cheese and blend. Add another third of dry ingredients and blend, then add the rest of the ricotta, and finally the rest of the dry ingredients, blending just to incorporate. Fold 1 1/2 cups of the blueberries into the batter, and blend on low speed to break up the berries a bit, about 30 seconds. Turn the batter into the prepared pan. Scatter the remaining cup of blueberries on top of the batter, and sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar. Place the baking sheet with springform pan in the oven.
  5. Bake until the cake is well browned, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 1 hour and 15 to 20 minutes. After 1 hour, gently cover the top of the cake with foil to protect it from over-browning. Remove the cake from the oven, and let the cake cool in the pan 20 to 25 minutes. Run a knife around the edges of the pan, and unfasten the sides of the pan. Let the cake cool completely before slicing, about 1 hour. Slice and serve with vanilla ice cream.

 

The Pottery House Cafe & Grille’s Warm Collard Green & Artichoke Dip with Fried Pork Rinds

February 4 isn’t just Super Bowl Sunday – it’s also National Pork Rind Appreciation Day, and here in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains, we’ve created one easy, delectable snack that commemorates both. Cooked Southern greens, artichoke hearts, and flecks of sweet red pepper brighten up a warm, cheesy dip that pairs perfectly with the Pottery House Cafe & Grill’s salty-rich pork rinds seasoned with our own blend of barbecue seasonings. These pieces of dried pork skin, minus most of the fat, are deep-fried until they puff up and crackle like popcorn. The sound is amazing when they come out of the fryer and they are still crackin’ and poppin’ when they are served, on our handcrafted pottery, as an appetizer in the Cafe’. They’re addictive just as they are, and are perfect for serving with any dip where you might serve tortilla chips.

These pork rinds are sold online as well as at The Old Mill Farmhouse Kitchen and The Old Mill General Store adjoining the 200-year-old working grist mill on the Little Pigeon River, one of the most photographed mills in the country and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Today our flint-granite French Buhr stones crank out 1,000 pounds of meals, grits, and flours a day that are sold online and appear in many of our home-cooked specialties served at The Old Mill Restaurant and the Old Mill Pottery House Cafe & Grille. All are part of our Old Mill Square, which also includes a candy kitchen, craft distillery, creamery, gourmet shop, and gift store featuring pottery crafted by artisans on the premises.

You can also purchase our Warm Collard Green Dip with Pork Rinds, ready to heat and serve, at our Old Mill Farmhouse Kitchen. But if you can’t get by, try our recipe below!

One of our chefs, Danielle Speelman, visited WBIR’s Live @ 5 @ 4, a local news show, to cook this for them. She always does an amazing job! We are so fortunate to have so many talented and passionate people with us here at The Old Mill. If you would like to watch the video, just click here!

To round out your Super Bowl spread, check out some of our other Old Mill products:

Warm Collard Green and Artichoke Cheese Dip with Pork Rinds

Makes 10 to 12 servings (about 4 cups)
Prep: 20 minutes
Bake: 25 to 30 minutes

1 package (10 ounces) frozen chopped collard greens, thawed and drained well (see Note)
1 can (14 ounces) artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup (4 ounces) grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 rounded tablespoons finely minced red bell pepper
1 teaspoon seasoning salt, or pick up our Zapp Seasoning in the Farmhouse Kitchen
1/2 cup shredded mild Cheddar cheese
Mean Green Jalapeno Hot Sauce or Pickled Jalapeno Mix pepper slices for serving
2 bags (2 ounces each) The Old Mill Pork Rinds, for serving

1. Place a rack in the center of the oven, and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

2. Place the collards in a colander or sieve set in the sink, and press down with a large spoon to press out all the water. Turn the drained collards in a large mixing bowl. Add the artichoke hearts, cream cheese, Parmesan, sour cream, mayonnaise, red pepper, and seasoning salt. Stir to combine well. Spoon the dip mixture into a 5- to 6-cup souffle dish or an 11- by 7-inch glass baking dish. Scatter the shredded cheese over the top. Place the pan in the oven.

3. Bake the dip until it is bubbly, about 25 to 30 minutes. Remove the dish from the oven, and serve warm with hot pepper sauce or pickled jalapeno peppers, if desired, and pork rinds.

Note: If you are using fresh collard greens, wash them well, drain and finely chop. Place about 5 cups fresh collards in a saucepan with chicken stock or water to cover. Simmer until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain well and let cool. Measure out 1 packed and generous cup of collard greens to use in this recipe.

Sweet Potato Hash Skillet

Makes 4 servings

2 medium sweet potatoes

1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 pound bulk pork sausage

1 cup diced yellow onion

1 cup diced green bell pepper

1 cup diced red bell pepper

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground cumin

 

1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper

1 pound bulk pork sausage

1 cup (8 ounces) grated Sweet Water Cheddar Cheese

4 large eggs, cooked to preference

 

Preheat oven to 400°F.  Peel and dice sweet potatoes;  spread on a baking sheet and toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil.  Roast until sweet potatoes are tender and browned, stirring once, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool.

Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat.  Add sausage and cook until browned, stirring to crumble. Drain in a colander;  wipe skillet clean.

Return skillet to heat;  add olive oil and heat until hot but not smoking. Add onions, peppers, and garlic;  sauté until softened, 3 to 5 minutes.  Add sweet potato, brown sugar, cumin, and ground red pepper;  reduce heat to medium and sauté 3 to 5 minutes.

Stir in the sausage;  cook until hot.  Season with salt and pepper.  Spoon into small, individual cast-iron skillets;  top each with one-fourth of the cheese.  Broil until cheese melts. Keep warm.

Cook eggs according to your preference. Top each serving with cooked eggs.