Tag Archive: recipes

1840 Farm and The Grain Mill Wagon Challenge

Earlier this year, I was invited to take part in the Grain Mill Wagon Challenge.  As a participant, I would use the WonderMill they supplied me with to mill my own flours and meals here at 1840 Farm.  Then I would share a collection of recipes that incorporated the freshly milled grains.

I will admit to being skeptical at first. It was hard for me to believe that milling our own fresh flour would be as simple as using a food processor or other type of straightforward kitchen appliance. I was also concerned that the resulting flour would be too heavy and that it would adversely affect the texture of our favorite recipes. For years, I had been using store bought wheat flours and trying my best to balance flavor and texture with the health benefits of whole grain flour.

I had produced many baked goods that were whole grain or whole wheat that had given me the basis for this concern. Those breads and pastries were often heavy and dense. Some had a sharp, biting flavor because the flour had been stored incorrectly long before I purchased it and brought it home.

Yet I was very interested in learning more about The WonderMill and trying my hand at producing our own freshly milled flour.  I wanted to try for myself and see if fresh flour was any different from the varieties I had purchased at my local grocery store and natural grocer.

It didn’t take long to convince me that freshly milled flour is superior in every way possible.  It also didn’t take long for me to fall in love with The WonderMill.  I cannot compare it to other mills as it is the only one I have ever used.  I can tell you that The WonderMill is so simple to use that it only requires setting it on the counter, plugging it in, and flipping a switch.  That’s it.

In minutes, the mill powers through an entire hopper of wheat berries or corn kernels and produces beautiful flours and meals from fine pastry flour to coarse meal.  I have been happily milling our own flour and cornmeal during this challenge and I don’t see myself ever returning to purchasing the store bought variety ever again.

By using this mill, I have been able to produce organic, non-GMO flour to use in the food that I prepare for my family.  I like knowing what I’m grinding and how long it has been stored.  There’s immense satisfaction in taking my scratch cooking that extra step and milling fresh flour to use in our recipes.

My time in The Grain Mill Wagon Challenge is drawing to a close.  You can see my collection of recipes by following the links below to visit The Grain Mill Wagon blog.  I intend to keep following their blog and hope that you will too.  There’s always something delicious being shared and a few of my blogging friends are just gearing up to begin their challenge.  I can’t wait to read all about their experience!

You can learn more about The WonderMill by visiting their website, or following them on Facebook, Google+Pinterest, and You Tube.  

Oven Baked Polenta with Heirloom Tomato Sauce

Whole Grain Waffles

Rustic Flatbread

Summer Berry Pie

Whole Grain Smoked Cheddar Gougères


Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2013/08/1840-farm-and-the-grain-mill-wagon-challenge/

Homemade Vanilla Extract


Homemade Vanilla Extract Kit at 1840 FarmI started making my own vanilla extract several years ago. I didn’t do it to save money or make a better product. I did it because it’s just what you do when someone in your family suddenly has food allergies.

One of the baking staples that I had a terrible time finding ingredient information and allergy warnings for was vanilla extract. Many companies that produce vanilla extract also make almond and other nut based extracts, making their products off limits for our family. My inability to find a safe vanilla extract wasn’t for a lack of trying. In my hours of searching online, I discovered that making vanilla extract required exactly two ingredients and a little cupboard space.

I was skeptical. My family looked at me with the same look they used the first time I proudly told them that I had perfected a brioche recipe using tofu instead of eggs. I’m sure you can close your eyes and picture exactly what I’m talking about. Then they smelled my first vanilla extract and tasted it for the first time in frosting that was filled with vanilla bean specks. They were sold. This food experiment was a keeper.

The homemade version of vanilla extract is superior in flavor and aroma to the extract available at the grocery store. The color develops to deep amber filled with tiny vanilla bean specks. The aroma will fill your kitchen from the moment you open the bottle. Your baked goods will taste and smell even more delicious once you’re using your own homemade vanilla extract.

Vanilla Extract Kit from 1840 Farm on EtsyWe offer our Vanilla Extract Kits in our Etsy Shop.  The listings include heavy duty glass swing top bottles with food safe stopper and gasket for optimum storage, extra rubber gaskets, premium vanilla beans, and easy to follow instructions. We’ll even include a recipe card that includes one of our family’s favorite baking recipes using our homemade vanilla extract.

Once you make your own vanilla extract, you may never purchase vanilla extract at the store again. After you have used the first 8.5 ounces of vanilla extract, you can simply follow the instructions and brew another 8.5 ounces of premium vanilla extract using the original vanilla beans included in each kit. After you have used the beans twice, the bean pods can still be used to flavor custards and sauces or allowed to dry slightly before adding to a mason jar full of sugar to create a batch of delicious vanilla bean sugar. We also offer vanilla beans pods in our shop so that you can restock and begin making another batch of vanilla using the bottle from your original kits.

Making your own vanilla extract is also a real money saver. Using this pair of kits, you can brew enough vanilla extract to make over 80 batches of homemade chocolate chip cookies. You can control the ingredients and strength of your homemade vanilla extract, putting you in complete control of the final product. You may even find that your recipes can be made with slightly less extract once you are using your homemade, rich vanilla extract.

I usually have two of these bottles in my kitchen cabinet. I keep one bottle of extract that I am using in my baking recipes and another one that is “brewing”. This way, I always have plenty of homemade vanilla extract to work with and never need to fear the prospect of running out.

These kits makes a wonderful gift for the baker or aspiring baker on your gift list. They also make a lovely hostess gift or takeaway gift for bridal showers and baby showers. We offer special discount pricing for orders of twelve or more kits and have worked with several customers to create custom labels for their shower and party favors. We would love to work with you to design something fabulous for your needs.

To view all of our items from the 1840 Farm Collection available for sale, visit The 1840 Farm Mercantile Shop on Etsy.

:Remember those family favorite recipes using homemade vanilla extract?  Here are a few for you to try:

Strawberry Jam Meringue Heart at 1840 FarmChocolate Cupcakes with Strawberry Buttercream Frosting

Chocolate Chip Gooey Butter Cake

1840 Farm Pancakes

Strawberry Jam Meringue Cookies

Chocolate Butter Cookies with Stout Buttercream Frosting

Coconut Macaroons

Raspberry Crumble Bars

Strawberry Simple Syrup

Lemon Drop Cookies with Lemon Buttercream


Baked Alaska



To make sure that you don’t miss any of our original content or favorite recipes, DIY projects, and homesteading advice, subscribe to The 1840 Farm Community Newsletter. Visit our subscription form to become the newest member of The 1840 Farm Community.

Our newsletter isn’t the only way to follow what’s happening here at 1840 Farm.
You’re always welcome at 1840 Farm
and at The 1840 Farm Mercantile Shop on Etsy.
You can also find 1840 Farm throughout the social media universe on
Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Flickr, and Bloglovin‘.

We even created a new 1840 Farm Community Newsletter Pinterest board to catalog
our newsletter content so that you could easily pin your favorites to your own boards.

Come add your voice to our conversation!
We’ll hope to see you there!


Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2013/03/1840-farm-vanilla-extract-kits/

Dark Chocolate Butter Cookies with Stout Buttercream Frosting

Chocolate Cookies with Stout Buttercream Branded

What can I say about a chocolate butter cookie topped with buttercream frosting infused with the flavor of a great stout beer?  The word delicious comes immediately to mind.  In the end, maybe I don’t need to say anything.  Maybe I just need to share the recipe!

Chocolate Butter Cookies with Stout Buttercream
Yields 24
I have been making these chocolate butter cookies for several years. I traditionally serve them with my family's favorite malted buttercream frosting. The last time I made a batch, my husband was enjoying a delicious bottle of Founders Breakfast Stout. Suddenly, just a small taste of his stout found its way into the mixing bowl. The resulting buttercream was fantastic. The malt powder paired beautifully with the deep flavor of the stout. It was delicious on its own, but when it was piped on the chocolate butter cookies, a new family favorite cookie was born. Don't worry, if you don't have any stout on hand, vanilla extract can be substituted.
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For the Cookies
  1. 8 ounces butter, softened
  2. 3/4 cup (144 grams) granulated sugar
  3. 1 large egg
  4. 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  5. 1 3/4 cup (210 grams) All-purpose flour
  6. 1/2 cup (60 grams) cocoa powder
  7. 4 Tablespoons Ovaltine Chocolate Malt powder
  8. 2 teaspoons baking powder
  9. 1/4 teaspoons sea salt
For the Stout Buttercream Frosting
  1. 4 ounces butter, softened
  2. 1/2 cup Ovaltine Classic Malt powder
  3. 1 1/2 cups (180 grams) powdered sugar
  4. 2 Tablespoons stout beer
  1. Using an electric mixer or food processor, cream the butter and sugar until it combines completely and makes a smooth paste. Add the egg and vanilla extract. Mix to combine. Add the flour, cocoa, malt powder, baking soda, and salt to the batter and mix just until combined. Do not overwork as this will result in a dough that is tough instead of delicate.
  2. Remove the dough to a sheet of parchment or waxed paper. Cover with a second sheet of paper. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a rectangle approximately 1/4 inch thick. Using rolling pin rings can make the task of rolling out the dough evenly much easier. Refrigerate the dough at least 45 minutes or until firm enough to cut cleanly.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line 2 baking sheets with nonstick liners or parchment paper. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and cut into your desired shape. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheets approximately 1 inch apart.
  4. Bake the cookies in the preheated oven for 14 to 16 minutes or until they are firm to the touch. Do not overbake. Remove from the oven and place trays on wire racks to cool completely.
  5. To make the buttercream, combine softened butter and malt powder using a mixer or food processor. Add stout beer to the butter and mix to incorporate. Slowly add the powdered sugar and mix until the mixture is completely smooth.
  6. Buttercream can be piped or spread on the cookies as soon as they are completely cool.
  1. Note: This dough works very well stored in the freezer. Simply roll the dough between sheets of freezer paper. Once the dough has frozen solid, it can be stored in a freezer bag. When you are ready to bake them, remove the frozen dough and cut into shapes as the oven preheats. Frozen cookies will require an additional 3-5 minutes in the oven, but taste identical to those made from freshly made refrigerated dough.
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To make sure that you don’t miss any of our original content or favorite recipes, DIY projects, and homesteading advice from around the web, subscribe to The 1840 Farm Community Newsletter. Visit our subscription form to become the newest member of The 1840 Farm Community.

Our newsletter isn’t the only way to follow what’s happening here at 1840 Farm.
You’re always welcome at 1840 Farm
and at The 1840 Farm Mercantile Shop on Etsy.
You can also find 1840 Farm throughout the social media universe on
Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Flickr, and Bloglovin‘.

We even created a new 1840 Farm Community Newsletter Pinterest board to catalog
our newsletter content so that you could easily pin your favorites to your own boards.

Come add your voice to our conversation!
We’ll hope to see you there!


Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2012/12/chocolate-butter-cookies-with-stout-buttercream-frosting/

Orange Genius

Summer is fast approaching and you might need a new recipe for a cold, refreshing drink.  I’m willing to bet that my recipe for Orange Genius on Foodie.com just might help make your summer a little sweeter.  The Orange Genius is a family favorite here at 1840 Farm made with our fresh, raw goat’s milk.

Give it a try and let me know if you agree that the Orange Genius is the perfect drink to enjoy this summer!

Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2012/06/orange-genius/

Boston Cream Pie Eclairs

EclairTruth be told, I never liked éclairs.  I didn’t understand the appeal.   All of the éclairs I had sampled were stale on the outside, soggy on the inside, and covered with bland chocolate glaze on the outside.

I didn’t have high hopes for my first batch of homemade éclairs.  I made them for my husband who has always loved them.  I never expected to take the first bite and happily think to myself, “Is this what an éclair is supposed to taste like?”

Apparently, I didn’t dislike the éclair.  Instead, I disliked what happened to an éclair that was forced to linger in a pastry case.   Now I know the secret and always fill and top them right before serving.  The end result is everything an éclair wants to be:  crisp on the outside,  creamy on the inside, and dressed with rich chocolate ganache.

After several modifications, this version is my family’s favorite.  It uses my recipes for pastry cream and ganache from our favorite Boston Cream Pie.  In fact, that may be why we all love it so much.  While Boston Cream Pie takes the better part of a day to make, these éclairs do not.

Now that I have mastered freezing the pâte à choux before baking, I try to always keep them on hand.   In less than thirty minutes, the taste of Boston Cream Pie can be on our farmhouse table.  Then we can get on to the best part of the éclair:  enjoying them together.

Boston Cream Pie Eclairs


4 ounces (8 Tablespoons) butter
8 ounces (1 cup) whole milk
¼ teaspoon salt
1 c (120 grams) All-purpose flour
4 large eggs
6 Tablespoons (72 grams) granulated sugar
¼ cup (30 grams) All-purpose flour

Pastry Cream

2 large eggs
12 ounces (1 ½ cups) whole milk
1 pinch salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract


3 ounces heavy cream
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped

Position the racks in the top and bottom third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line two baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper. Set aside.

Measure the flour into a small bowl. Crack all of the eggs into a bowl and set aside until they are needed.

Combine milk, butter, and salt in a medium sized pot over high heat. Monitor the mixture closely, stirring often, to avoid scorching. As soon as the mixture comes to a boil, reduce the heat to medium and add the flour in one addition. Stir rapidly with a wooden spoon until the mixture comes together to form a ball. Continue to stir continuously for two minutes until the dough is completely smooth and leaves a film on the bottom of the pot. Remove the pot from the heat and allow the mixture to cool for five minutes.

Once the five minutes have elapsed, add the eggs one at a time, stirring vigorously after each addition. With the addition of each egg, the dough will break. This is normal; rest assured that the dough will be perfectly smooth by the time the fourth egg is incorporated.

Using a pastry bag with a large round tip, pipe dough onto the prepared sheets in 1 1/2 inch by 4 inch strips. Transfer the baking sheets to the preheated oven. Bake for 15 minutes at 425 degrees. Rotate the baking sheets and reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Bake 10 – 15 additional minutes or until golden brown and hollow sounding when tapped on the bottom.

Remove the baking sheets to a wire rack to cool completely. Pierce each éclair with a toothpick or skewer to allow steam to escape while cooling. This will allow the pastry to cool without deflating.

Meanwhile, prepare the pastry cream by combining 2 eggs with sugar in a medium bowl. Whisk until smooth. Add the flour and whisk vigorously until completely smooth.

Heat the milk in a saucepan over medium heat until small bubbles appear. Remove the pan from the heat and ladle 1/2 cup of warm milk into the egg mixture. Whisk rapidly to temper the eggs and prevent them from scrambling. Add the egg mixture to the remaining warm milk in the saucepan. Return the pan to medium heat and whisk continuously until the mixture is thick enough to coat a spoon. Remove from heat.

Remove the pastry cream from the pan (straining if necessary to remove lumps) and place in a bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, pressing it firmly against the cream mixture to prevent a skin from forming as it cools. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Prepare the ganache by warming the heavy cream in a small pan or in the microwave for 30 seconds. Add the chocolate and allow to rest for two minutes. Whisk to incorporate. When the cream and chocolate have become a satiny glaze, set aside to cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally.

To serve, the pastry cream can be added to a pastry bag with a large round tip. Place the tip in the end of the éclair and squeeze to fill. The éclair can also be split horizontally using a sharp knife before spooning the pastry cream over the surface of the bottom half and covering with the top half. Dress the filled éclair with the ganache. Serve immediately.

This dough can be frozen and baked directly from the freezer. Simply pipe dough onto a freezer paper lined pan. Place pan in the freezer until dough is completely frozen. Remove the dough from the freezer paper and store in a freezer bag until ready to use. To bake, simply place frozen dough directly on lined baking trays and bake as directed above. Frozen dough may take an additional 4-6 minutes of baking time.


To make sure that you don’t miss any of our original content or favorite recipes, DIY projects, and homesteading advice from around the web, subscribe to The 1840 Farm Community Newsletter. Visit our subscription form to become the newest member of The 1840 Farm Community.

Our newsletter isn’t the only way to follow what’s happening here at 1840 Farm.
You’re always welcome at 1840 Farm
and at The 1840 Farm Mercantile Shop on Etsy.
You can also find 1840 Farm throughout the social media universe on
Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Flickr, and Bloglovin‘.

We even created a new 1840 Farm Community Newsletter Pinterest board to catalog
our newsletter content so that you could easily pin your favorites to your own boards.

Come add your voice to our conversation!
We’ll hope to see you there!


Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2012/02/boston-cream-pie-eclairs/

Strawberry Jam Meringue Cookies

Happy Valentine’s Day!

In case you’re looking for a little baking inspiration today, give my recipe for Strawberry Jam Meringue Cookies on Foodie.com a try.  They can be piped into beautiful hearts and dipped in chocolate just in time for sharing with your Valentine!

Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2012/02/strawberry-jam-meringue-cookies/

1840 Farm and Foodie.com

I’m proud to announce that I have been selected as a contributor for Foodie.com.  The beta site launched this morning and includes an incredible collection of delicious looking recipes.  In fact, there are three new recipes from the 1840 Farm collection just waiting for you to try…

Chocolate Malt Cupcakes with Malted Buttercream Frosting

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Mushrooms and Spinach

Smoked Cheddar Gougeres

Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2012/02/1840-farm-and-foodie-com/

Raspberry Crumble Bars

We’re deep into raspberry season here at 1840 Farm.  Every day for the past few weeks, we have found ourselves out in the raspberry patch reaching into the brambles to pluck the ripe berries and tenderly place them in their berry baskets.  It’s not a farm chore without its hazards.  In fact, my arms look like I’ve found myself on the losing end of a battle with a porcupine.

The scrapes and thorns can’t deter me from picking all the berries our patch will provide.  The real trick is in using every single berry that gets picked.  This seemingly simple task can become a chore of its own.

Some of our berries will be turned into jam that will provide a much-needed pick me up once winter has taken us in its firm grip yet again.  Pounds of berries will be frozen and kept for future baking projects.  Right now, at their peak, a lot of berries will go directly from the bramble to our mouths.  You might call it berry patch collateral damage, but I call it a just reward for another year of hard work in the garden.

The raspberries are enjoying elite status at 1840 Farm right now.  June’s strawberry season has come and gone and the blueberries are still several weeks away from harvest.  This is the time to celebrate our raspberries.  We have already picked over 12 pounds of fruit and yet the canes are still covered in ripening berries.  I see many more raspberry pies, tarts, and jelly jars full of jam in our future.

We all look forward to raspberry pie this time of the year, but with all this time spent picking berries, it can be a real struggle to find the time to make a pie.  True, we have already enjoyed one double crusted beauty of a raspberry pie, but the berries are coming into the farmhouse faster than I can grab my rolling pin.  Yes, it’s a wonderful dilemma to find myself in, but still, what to do with all of these beautiful, ripe berries?

I found myself yesterday finishing my morning cup of Sweet Maria’s Moka Kadir Blend and looking over my recipe collection.  I had several raspberry recipes for tarts, pies, and even cakes, but nothing was calling to me.  There was only one thing to do:  invent something that would call to my whole family.

I married two of our favorite recipes in the hopes of yielding a dish that would combine the texture and taste of our beloved raspberry pie filling wrapped in a brown sugar crumble.  I slid it into the oven and hoped that I had balanced the sweetness of the crumble with the tart acidity of our hand-picked berries.  It smelled lovely as it baked, but the proof is always in the tasting.  Waiting forty minutes to have the first taste seemed almost unbearable.

That was until I had the first bite and watched my daughter’s face as she took hers.  It was exactly what I had hoped for: slightly sweet, slightly tangy with hints of vanilla and cinnamon.  A warm square topped with vanilla ice cream was otherworldly.  It wasn’t a double crusted pie, but it was prepped, baked, and cooling on the counter in under an hour.  This was a winner.

Right now, I’m off to pick the day’s berries.  I know that I will find myself loaded down with baskets of fruit this morning.  I also know that the cuts and scrapes will increase dramatically by the time I have harvested all that our canes have to offer.

I’ll wear the scrapes as a badge of gardening success.  Only another person who has collected raspberries from their thorny canes could appreciate my willingness to tangle with our raspberry patch every day.  I don’t mind.  I’ve got nothing to hide.  I’m proud of our raspberry harvest here at the farm this year and I’ll tell anyone who wants to hear about it.  It’s raspberry season here at 1840 Farm and I have the scars to prove it.

Raspberry Crumble Bars
makes 18 bars


8 ounces raspberries
72 grams(6 Tablespoons) sugar
2 Tablespoons water
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
1 Tablespoon tapioca
1 1/2 cups King Arthur White Wheat Flour
120 grams (3/4 cup) brown sugar, unpacked
80 grams (1 cup) old-fashioned oats
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 ounces butter, cut into cubes
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Line a 9×9 pan with parchment paper.  Set aside.

In medium bowl, combine raspberries, sugar, and water.  If using frozen berries, warm mixture in microwave for 1-2 minutes.  Add cornstarch and tapioca and stir to combine.  Set aside as the crumble mixture is prepared.

Combine flour, brown sugar, oats, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and cubed butter in the bowl of a food processor.  Process briefly until the texture resembles a coarse meal, approximately 15 – 30 seconds.  Add vanilla extract and pulse just  until dough comes together.

Transfer half of the crumble mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan.  Press the mixture lightly to form a crust that completely covers the bottom the pan.  Stir the raspberry mixture and pour over the crust, spreading to cover evenly.  Sprinkle the remaining crumble mixture evenly over the berry filling.

Bake the crumble in the preheated oven for 35 – 40 minutes until the topping has browned lightly and the raspberry filling has thickened.  Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or fresh whipped cream.

This post was featured in The 1840 Farm Community Newsletter. To make sure that you don’t miss any of our original content or favorite recipes, DIY projects, and homesteading advice from around the web, subscribe to The 1840 Farm Community Newsletter. Visit our subscription form to become the newest member of The 1840 Farm Community.

Our newsletter isn’t the only way to follow what’s happening here at 1840 Farm.
You’re always welcome at 1840 Farm
and at The 1840 Farm Mercantile Shop on Etsy.
You can also find 1840 Farm throughout the social media universe on
Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Flickr, and Bloglovin‘.

We even created a new 1840 Farm Community Newsletter Pinterest board to catalog
our newsletter content so that you could easily pin your favorites to your own boards.

Come add your voice to our conversation!
We’ll hope to see you there!




Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2011/07/raspberry-crumble-bars/

Caramelized Banana Ice Cream

1840 Farm Caramelized Banana Ice CreamWasn’t the first day of summer last week?  I am quite sure that it was although Mother Nature seems to have forgotten.  In the last ten days, I’ve found myself digging through fall and winter clothes to outfit myself and my children with long sleeve shirts, jackets, sweaters, and the like.  I am not happy about this.

We live in New England where the growing season is only 90 days long.  We trudge through every winter and mud season, aka spring, holding the promise of summer close at hand.  We have to, it’s the only way to make it through.  Yet here we sit mere days from July with temperatures barely breaking the 60 degree mark.  I am not amused.

This should be the time of year when we end a day of working outside by swimming in the seasonal pool in the backyard.  Icy cocktails should be served.  The garden should need watering to cope with the abundant sunshine.  I should be able to eat ice cream without wearing a jacket.

I will have to press on in spite of the unseasonably cool weather.  I will persevere.  I will have multiple flavors of homemade ice cream in our freezer to accompany our Fourth of July Feast.  If the weather hasn’t warmed up by then, I may rescind Mother Nature’s invitation to dine with us.

On to the ice cream.  It is a perennial favorite here at 1840 Farm.  We all have our favorite flavors, but a few are popular with every member of our family.  Honey vanilla bean is a great base for ice cream sundaes and caramelized banana sends everyone running to the churning ice cream machine for a taste.

How do they know when to come running with a tasting spoon in hand?  Even if I haven’t divulged my plan to make caramelized banana ice cream, their sense of smell gives me away.  Preparing the bananas suddenly perfumes our whole farmhouse with the heavenly smell of warm honey and bananas.  In less than thirty minutes, the base is prepped and the hard work begins.  We need to allow the base to sit overnight in the refrigerator to completely cool and allow the flavors to develop.

I will admit to skipping this step in the past.  I cooled the base in an ice bath and processed it in my machine.  Doing so never yielded the rich, smooth texture that I can achieve if I allow the mix to chill overnight.  After I had tried it a few times I decided that the overnight chill would just have to be part of the process.  We would all just have to take a deep breath and wait.

I hope that you will enjoy this ice cream as much as we do.  I also hope that Mother Nature will remember that it is indeed summer.  A little warmth and sunshine would be much appreciated.  Until then, I’ll take a deep breath and wait.  At least I’ll have ice cream to make the wait a little more bearable.

Caramelized Banana Ice Cream

I prefer to use honey in this recipe instead of refined sugar.  If you prefer, brown sugar could be substituted for the honey.  Using brown sugar will result in a darker ice cream but the taste will still be delicious.

1 Tablespoon butter
4 Tablespoons (84 grams) honey
3 medium bananas sliced 1/2″ thick
8 ounces (1 cup) heavy cream
1 large egg yolk
1 pinch sea salt
16 ounces (2 cups) whole milk
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

Melt butter in large skillet over medium heat.  Add honey and banana slices and saute until caramelized and soft, about 12 minutes.  Reduce heat to low and add cream, stirring to combine.  Remove from heat.

In small bowl, combine egg yolk and 2 Tablespoons of the warm cream mixture.  Whisk until smooth.  Add egg mixture to skillet over low heat.  Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.  Remove from heat.

Add warm mixture to the bowl of a food processor and pulse until smooth.  Add salt, whole milk, and vanilla.  Pulse until well combined.  Remove mixture to a covered container.  Refrigerate overnight.  Prepare ice cream maker for use.

Pour refrigerated mixture into freezer base and process as recommended by manufacturer.  Place ice cream in a freezer safe container and freeze until ready to serve.

Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2011/06/caramelized-banana-ice-cream/

Butter or Sugar Cookies?

How do you decide if a cookie made mostly with butter and sugar is a butter cookie or a sugar cookie?  Do you carefully weigh each component and decide based upon preponderance?  No, it’s really much simpler than that.  Ask a five-year old.  The five year-old who lives at 1840 Farm didn’t have any trouble deciding.  In fact, he hadn’t even finished his first cookie before he had his final answer.

While I can make an argument in either direction for these cookies, my son cannot be moved from his firm stance that they belong in the butter cookie camp.  In fact, if I announce that I am making sugar cookies and he runs into the kitchen to taste them warm from the oven, he inevitably looks at me disapprovingly and says, “Are these the sugar cookies you said you were making?”

Don’t get me wrong, he likes these cookies.  In fact, he will happily eat several before I have to cut him off.  Still, these cookies cannot be called sugar cookies in his world.  That designation is forever reserved for the traditionally sugar sprinkled, round cut out cookies made by his grandmother.  Believe me, I don’t take it personally.

In the end, it really doesn’t matter if you call these butter cookies or sugar cookies.  It only matters that you made cookies from scratch and that you share them with someone special.  The rest is up to interpretation.  That is, unless you’re a five-year old.  In that case, the answer is apparently crystal clear.  Now if I can just convince my mother to make a batch of her sugar cookies.  If she doesn’t share, I might take it personally.

1840 Farm Butter Cookies
makes 24 cookies


Here at 1840 Farm, these cookies are a staple.  They are incredibly flavorful and a great recipe to showcase just how delicious homemade vanilla extract can be.  As they bake, their aroma perfumes the air to the point of making it nearly impossible to wait for them to cool before trying one fresh out of the oven.

While I don’t normally cut them out with a cookie cutter, you certainly could.  For me, these cookies are all about the taste and my family is happy to eat them in hand cut squares which saves me time and keeps the dough from becoming tough from successive rollings.  Because these cookies are basically a sable dough, they store incredibly well.  They stay crispy for several days at room temperature and the vanilla flavor improves as they age.


1 cup (2 sticks) butter
96 grams (1/2 cup)  sugar
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
210 grams (1  3/4 cup) King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Combine butter, sugar, and vanilla in the bowl of a food processor.  Process until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Add flour, baking powder, and salt and process using on and off turns until the mixture forms large crumbs.  Do not overmix as this will cause the gluten to develop and prevent the final cookie from having a delicate texture.

Empty dough onto a counter lined with food wrap, waxed paper, or parchment.  Bring dough together with your hands and roll to an even 1/4″ thickness.  Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or freeze for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  If you have frozen the dough, remove it from the freezer and allow it to warm up for at least ten minutes before continuing.  Cut dough into desired shape and place cookies on lined baking sheets.  Bake for 10-14 minutes, or until the edges of the cookies are golden brown.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool on baking sheets for five minutes before moving to a wire rack to cool completely.

1840 Farm Butter Cookies on Foodista1840 Farm Butter Cookies

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Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2011/05/butter-or-sugar-cookies/

Not a Chicken in Sight

I’ve already admitted to being a person who raises chickens but doesn’t eat them.  It’s true.  We have seven hens living here at 1840 Farm, but chicken never finds its way to our dinner table.   Maybe that’s why our hens are so happy living here.

I don’t have anything against eating meat.  I was meat eater for most of my life.  I always loved vegetables, so replacing the meat on my dinner plate with an extra helping of them was easy for me.  Here at the farm, we raise as much of our own food as we can including the eggs that come from our small flock of hens.  I simply don’t enjoy meat enough to want to raise and process animals myself.  It didn’t make much sense to me for us to buy meat at the grocery store if we weren’t going to be buying our tomatoes there.  I’ve written before that, “I never had the courage of my culinary convictions to raise an animal knowing that it would eventually take up residence in my roasting pan.”   It’s true.

It wasn’t always this way.  In fact, I used to make the roasted chicken from Thomas Keller‘s Bouchon cookbook. The whole family used to be happy to smell it roasting in the oven and even happier to see it gracing our farmhouse table.   If you and your family enjoy roast chicken, I’d recommend trying his simple and delicious version.  I feel fairly confident that you won’t be sorry.

If however, you don’t enjoy roast chicken due to personal preference or because you lean towards the vegetarian end of the spectrum like we do, then here is a very different recipe for you to try.  No, I’m not comparing my recipe to Bouchon’s roast chicken or myself to Thomas Keller.  I know better.  I’m pretty sure that he doesn’t dabble in creating meat substitutes out of wheat products.  That seems much more like a Wylie Dufresne thing to do.

Thomas Keller doesn’t live here at 1840 Farm.  I do and it takes a good dash of creativity to keep us fed and happy while meeting the dietary needs of a marathon runner, Type 1 Diabetic, and a family member with multiple food allergies.  Once we decided as a family to not eat meat, I had to add a little extra creativity to my recipe collection.  Figuring out how to replace meat with substitutes that tasted great was one of the first challenges I faced.

This recipe started out with my own web research on recipes for meat substitutes.  I happened upon Vegan Dad and found an entire collection of interesting recipes to try.  I started out with his version of lunch meat.  After several versions, the following recipe for “Froast” (faux roast) became our favorite.   If you are looking for some great vegan or vegetarian recipes to add to your collection, Vegan Dad has an incredible collection of them.  The writing is fresh and I have yet to find a recipe that didn’t deliver on exactly what was promised.  In fact, when I compiled my list of favorite blogs for my Stylish Blogger Award, Vegan Dad was one of the first to make the list.

We eat froast on open-faced toasted sandwiches and make a delicious vegetarian version of chicken salad with fresh celery from our garden.  Believe me, when we’re eating froast, we’re too busy enjoying it to be reminded of what others might think that we are “missing” out on.  Now if I could just get Thomas Keller to come for a visit and make dinner here at 1840 Farm.  Come on, I said that we didn’t eat chicken and that Keller didn’t live here.  I never said that I wouldn’t love to eat something that he made in my kitchen.  I’m not entirely sure, but a warm chocolate bouchon seems like the perfect place to start.

Froast (Faux Roast)
makes 4 loaves

260 grams cannelini beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
3 teaspoons onion powder
1 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
1 Tablespoon Bell’s Poultry Seasoning
30 grams nutritional yeast
1 Tablespoon gravy master
1 Tablespoon Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 Tablespoons  reduced sodium soy sauce
16 ounces water or vegetable stock
330 grams vital wheat gluten

Prepare steamer while assembling the froast.  I use a wok with a bamboo steamer in my kitchen.  I have also used a pasta pot with an insert and a skillet with a bamboo steamer.  As long as you mind the pot and add water when necessary, any cooking vessel that will hold a steamer or steamer basket and boil water will be sufficient.

Place drained beans in the bowl of a food processor.  Process until completely smooth.  Add spices, gravy master, vinegar, olive oil, and soy sauce and process to blend.  Transfer mixture to a large bowl.  Add water (or stock if using) to bean mixture and stir to combine.  Add vital wheat gluten and stir until mixture begins to come together and form a shaggy mixture.

Place approximately one-quarter of mixture on a double thickness of aluminum foil cut into a 12″ x 12″ sheet.  I use the precut aluminum foil sheets for this as it saves me a lot of time.  Form the mixture into a loaf shape and wrap in the foil.  Twist the edges and tuck them under to form a loaf shape.  The foil wrapped loaf should be firm, but the loaf will expand slightly while it cooks, so if the foil is too tight, it may split while cooking.

Place foil wrapped loaves in the steamer.  Adjust the heat as necessary to keep the water at a gentle boil.  Steam the loaves for 60 minutes.  During the last 30 minutes of steaming, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  At the end of the hour-long steaming period, transfer the loaves to a baking sheet and into the preheated oven.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Froast can be wrapped and stored in the freezer until ready to use.  If frozen, I defrost by heating a loaf in the microwave for around two minutes.  I remove the defrosted loaf from the microwave and allow it to sit one minute to evenly distribute the heat and defrost the center.  At this point, the froast is ready to serve.

Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2011/04/not-a-chicken-in-sight/

Pancake Night

I was drinking a cup of coffee yesterday morning while reading the news headlines on my laptop.  Among the news, I saw a tagline proclaiming that it was National Pancake Day.  I was intrigued.  I like pancakes.  I clicked on the headline and prepared to read a story full of homey touches about making pancakes.

Instead, I ended up in what seemed like an infomercial for IHOP.  Apparently, “national” meant that a national chain of restaurants had decided to give away pancakes.  There were no homey touches.  In fact, this so-called holiday didn’t involve a home at all.  I was beginning to compose a post in my head to register my unhappiness with what I perceived as a completely contrived moment of pancake marketing.

Luckily, I continued to read and learned that IHOP’s National Pancake Day is a fundraiser for the Children’s Miracle Network.  The complimentary pancakes come with the request for a charitable donation.  I took a deep breath and reminded myself that I should always finish my coffee before doing anything that involves brain power early in the morning.  Why the sudden change of heart?  I have a vivid memory of being a parent sitting at the bedside of my child in a Children’s Miracle Network hospital.  Believe me, that memory is much stronger than my opinion regarding pancakes.  Suddenly I was on the National Pancake Day bandwagon.

How could we celebrate the moment at 1840 Farm without the potential allergic reaction and high blood sugar that would certainly follow a trip to a pancake house?  The answer was simple:  make pancakes for dinner.  I started to gather ingredients while the children debated the merits of banana versus blueberry.  Banana was the clear winner.  Now all that was left was the mixing and flipping.  The griddle waits for no one.

As usual, the pancakes didn’t linger on our plates.  My son had to be cut off and reminded that there would be pancakes waiting for him tomorrow morning for breakfast.  Smiles slowly spread across my children’s faces as they excused themselves from the dinner table.  They both voiced their opinion that we should have pancake night more often.  I had to agree.

I’m sorry IHOP.  Continue on with National Pancake Day.  I will happily support any day that involves raising money for a deserving charity and puts a smile on my children’s faces.  In the end, pancakes really do deserve their own holiday.  Pancake night at 1840 Farm seems like a good start.

1840 Farm Pancakes
serves 6 – 8

This pancake base has been a family favorite for years.  We  typically dress them with banana slices or blueberries grown on our farm, but they would be delicious topped with your favorite pancake companion.


240 grams (2 cups) King Arthur White Wheat Flour
60 grams (5 Tablespoons) brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
2 ounces plain yogurt
15 ounces skim milk
1 ounce (2 Tablespoons) apple cider vinegar
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
2 large bananas, sliced thinly

maple syrup and butter for serving




Lightly coat a griddle or cast iron skillet with a neutral tasting oil like safflower or canola.  Heat griddle or cast iron skillet over medium high heat.

Meanwhile, combine all dry ingredients in a large bowl.  Beat eggs in a medium bowl before adding yogurt, milk, vinegar, and vanilla extract.  Whisk until smooth.  Make a well in the center of dry ingredients and add the prepared liquid ingredients.  Gently whisk until the mixture is well combined and no lumps appear.

Add batter to griddle or skillet using ladle.  Allow bubbles to appear throughout the pancake before adding banana slices.  Turn pancake and cook on second side until lightly browned.  Top pancakes with butter and maple syrup.  Serve warm.

Permanent link to this article: http://1840farm.com/2011/03/pancake-night/

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