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October 2014
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January 2015

Infused Vodka

Thyme Infused Vodka
Thyme has been growing wild in my garden for years. 25 years after I gave the first plant a home, I  finally found something to do with it and our weekend cocktail hour has never been the same.  Gift giving has never been so spirited.

Cranberry infused vodka

  • 1 liter vodka
  • flavorings such as thyme, cranberries, lemon and lime rinds
  • glass bottles with tight seals

Lemon and Lime Infused Vodka

Add the flavorings to the bottle.  I like them about 1/4 full.  For Fruit rinds you dont need more than a few pieces.  Fill each bottle to the neck.  Let sit for at least 3 days before using or giving.

cranberries and thyme infused vodka

More for when the sun is past the yard arm:

 

Photo Credit:  Julie Cecchini

Thyme Infused Vinegar


Pumpkin Cheese Bread

Pumpkin Cheese Bread
This is a recipe I have been playing with over the past couple years.  It started out as a quick bread and ended up as a no kneed masterpiece. It is fabulous aside a beef stew and stupendous with a schemer of blueberry jam.  It's even a hearty mouthful all on it's own.

Pumpkin Cheese Bread

I use a sprouted spelt flour because the wholesome flavor blends so well with pumpkin and cheese.  Machengo is my go to, but this weekend I am trying it with some mozzarella and future plans include crumbled gorgonzola.   Experiment and find your own favorite recipe.


Pumpkin Cheese Bread

Thoroughly combine flour, salt and yeast.  Add the whey or water and 1 tbsp Local Honey.  When mixed the dough will be sticky.  Cover loosely and allow to rise in a warm environment for 12 to 18 hours.

Pumpkin Cheese Bread

Dust a piece of parchment with flour and remove dough from the bowl.  Stretch the dough and spread 1 tbsp honey over it.  Dust with your choice of spice and sprinkle on cheese and roasted pumpkin.  Roll up dough, then fold it back together, leaving the crease resting on the paper.  Cover with a towel and let rise for 2 hours.  You can either bake it in this form or twist it in to a circle and place in your cast iron pot. 



Pumpkin Cheese Bread

After 90 minutes of the rising time place your pot or baking stone in an oven that has been preheated to 475 f.  When the dough finishes rising, sprinkle with salt and carefully slide it into the hot pot or onto the stone.  Bake 30 minutes.  Remove from the oven.  Check to see if the internal temperature is 200 f.  If it is and the bread has browned to your liking it is finished.  Should you want a darker crust put it back in the oven uncovered for 15 minutes.

Pumpkin Cheese Bread

You can make it with traditional all purpose flour instead of the sprouted spelt.  I adapted it from the basic recipe in Jim Lahey's, My Bread.  Honey was added because it helps the spelt to rise better, you do not need it when using traditional wheat flour. 

Pumpkin Cheese Bread

More for bread lovers:

 

Photo Credit: Julie T Cecchini