Coffee & Blue Burger with Stout BBQ Sauce

Good things are coming. Good things. For instance… Coffee, beef and beer and BBQ. In your recent CSA share we included a special roast from our friends at Santa Lucia Coffee located locally in Centralia, Washington. We ground up a little bit of that and included it in both the burger recipe and the BBQ sauce today. Along with a little beer of course. I’m sure you’ve all noticed a trend with me and yes, I love cooking with an variety of alcohol. Now lets get started.

The Burger

1lb Quality Pasture Raised Ground Beef (We used our local Heritage Meat)
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Black Pepper
1 minced Garlic Clove
4 tsp Ground Santa Lucia Coffee
1/2 cup Crumbled Blue Cheese (We used Rogue Creamery‘s Smokey Blue)
4 Pretzel Buns – split and toasted
Lettuce, Tomato, Onions and any other fixxin’s you prefer


The Sauce

3/4 cup Chopped White Onion
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
1/4 cup Molasses
6oz Tomato Paste
1 Tbsp Sea Salt
2 tsp Ancho Chili Powder
2 1/2 cups Porter or Stout beer
1/4 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
2oz Brewed Santa Lucia Coffee


  1. If you’re using a charcoal grill, get those things going so your grill is hot by the time you’re burgers are ready to slap on there.
  2. Starting off with the BBQ sauce – In a medium sized pan, caramelize your onions in the olive oil on medium/low heat.
  3. Once your onions are a nice golden brown and caramelized, add the salt and ancho chili powder and stir for about 30 seconds to toast up the spices.
  4. Add your molasses and continue to stir for another 30 seconds.
  5. De-glaze the pan with the Beer and add the apple cider vinegar. Continue cooking on low for about 10 minutes. Feel free to add a little more beer if it’s looking too thick.
  6. Pour the sauce into a blender along with the brewed coffee and puree until smooth. Your sauce is now ready.
  7. Onto the delicious burgers – In a medium sized bowl, gently mix your ground beef, salt, pepper and garlic. Divide the meat into 4 sections and press each into a patty.
  8. On each side of the hamburger patty, sprinkle and press 1/2 tsp of ground coffee on each side.
  9. On a preheated grill (or cast iron pan if you prefer) brush the grates with a little olive oil and grill the patties. For the love of all things holy, don’t press them with the spatula. Please. If you need a refresher course on how to grill a burger visit this link.
  10. Once your burgers are cooked to your liking (medium rare – hint hint) start building your burger on your toasted buns. Add your sauce, fixins and crumbled blue cheese. That concludes our recipe for the day, enjoy!


Recipe by: Mirinda @ Boistfort Valley Farm
vegetable storage

Farmer’s Guidelines for Storing Fresh Produce

Please note that these are guidelines, not rules.
Seasonal conditions may dictate different storing capacities for crops.
All fresh vegetables should be eaten as quickly as possible for best nutrition & flavor.

Artichokes Store in a loose bag in the refrigerator, one week +.
Beans Do not wash until ready to use. Store in a loose bag in the refrigerator, 3-5 days.
Soybeans Do not wash until ready to use. Store in a loose bag in the fridge, up to 1 week.
Beets Top to maintain moisture in beets. Leaves should be used within 3 days, roots will last for weeks.
Bok Choy Store in a loose plastic bag in the fridge, up to one week.
Broccoli Store in a loose plastic bag in the fridge, up to one week.
Brussels Sprouts Store in a loose bag in the fridge, one week +.
Cabbage Loose bag in the fridge, may last a few to several weeks. Peel off outer leaves for use to maintain longer storage.
Carrots Plastic bag in the fridge. Put a few holes in the bag for long term storage to increase air circulation.
Cauliflower Do not wash until ready to use, or wash and cut up head, storing as florets. Up to one week in the fridge.
Celery Loose bag in the fridge, may last a few to several weeks.
Corn Eat as soon as possible, or freeze. Sugars in corn turn to starch quickly.
Cucumber Loose in a bag or in crisper in fridge, up to one week.
Eggplant Loose in a bag or in crisper in fridge, use as soon as possible for maximum texture, but storable up to one week.
Fennel Loose bag in the fridge, may last up to a few weeks.
Fresh Herbs Store in a loose bag in the fridge, remove rubber band to increase air flow. Soft-leaved herbs (basil, cilantro) should not be washed until ready to use. Use or dry within one week.
Kale Wash, trim stems, and pat dry (leaves whole) for quick use. Store in a closed plastic bag in the fridge. One week +.
Leeks Loose bag in the fridge, may last a few to several weeks. Peel off outer leaves to maintain longer storage.
Lettuce Lettuce may be washed and gently spun dry, then kept in the fridge for quick access, but keep leaves whole until ready for use to minimize browning. Washed and spun dry, loose, 3-5 days. Whole head, unwashed, 1 week +. Softer lettuces (Brunia, Lolla Rossa especially) will not last as long as Romaine types.
Melons Leave out on counter until ready to use.
Onions & Shallots Fresh:  Loose in a bag or in crisper in fridge, may last several weeks. Dry:  Keep in a dry dark place to prevent molding and sprouting. May last up to several months with proper storage. Sort frequently and use those with blemishes first.
Green Onion Remove rubber band and store in the fridge, loose in bag until ready to use, up to one week.
Parsley Store loose in bag in the fridge. Gently pat dry if needed for longer storage. May also be hung out of direct light and left to dry.
Parsnip Plastic bag in the fridge. Put a few holes in the bag for long term storage to increase air circulation.
Peas Do not wash until ready to use. Store in a loose bag in the refrigerator, 3-5 days.
Peppers Do not wash until ready to use. Store in a loose bag in the fridge up to one week.
Radicchio Do not wash until ready to use. Store in a loose bag in the fridge & peel off leaves as needed. One week +.
Radishes Top to maintain moisture in radishes, loose bag in the fridge, use within a week.
Rutabaga Plastic bag in the fridge. Put a few holes in the bag for long term storage to increase air circulation.
Salad Greens See lettuces, 3-5 days.
Spinach May be washed and gently spun dry, then in a closed bag in the fridge for quick use, but I recommend leaving leaves whole until ready for use. 3-5 days.
Summer Squash Loose in a bag in fridge, one week.
Winter Squash Store in a dark dry place to prevent molding and over ripening. May store through December or longer. Sort frequently and use those with blemishes first.
Swiss Chard Store in a closed bag in fridge. Remove twist tie to increase air flow. May be washed and gently spun dry for quick use. One week.
Tomatoes Much speculation on this one. Some recommend not refrigerating, as it breaks down flavor, but they will keep longer in the fridge. The varieties we grow are frequently more tender than store types, which are selected for shipping and storage.
Flowers Trim stem ends and place in fresh water. Changing water every day or two may prolong flower life. With lilies and gladiolas, trim off dead flowers to encourage the others to open. You may also pull off the anthers of the lily blossoms when the flowers first open to avoid pollen messes.
Butternut Squash soup

Kürbissuppe – German squash soup

A simple soup, perfect for a rainy winter day. The German variation includes apples, parsnips and carrots to enhance the character of the butternut squash. Your recent winter CSA share included some yummy root veggies along with the butternut squash, potatoes and Fuji Apples. We decided to cook them up and turn them into a creamy, velvety comforting soup.

Recipe by: Mirinda @ Boistfort Valley Farm


3 medium Butternut Squash
2 Fuji Apples
4 large Parsnips
4 large Carrots
3 large Fingerling Potatoes
1 white Onion
1/4 cup Butter
1 quart Vegetable Broth
2 cups Half & Half
1/2 tsp Ground Ginger
1 1/2 tsp Curry Powder
salt to taste


  1.  Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
  2.  Cut your squash down the center and remove seeds. Place face down onto a large baking sheet.
  3. Peel carrots and parsnips and remove the tops. Place on baking sheet along with your squash and put into your oven. Allow to cook for approximately 30-45 minutes (until your parsnips and carrots have a golden, roasted look) Remove your carrots and parsnips and set aside. Place your squash back into the oven for another 30-40 minutes or until fork tender.
  4. Peel and chop your onion and apples and add to a stockpot along with your butter on medium-low heat. Allow to cook until the onions are clear.
  5. Peel and chop your potatoes and add to your stockpot along with your roasted carrots, parsnips and vegetable broth. Cover and let simmer until potatoes and carrots are tender.
  6. At this point, your squash should be done cooking. Remove from your oven and set aside to cool.
  7. When your carrots, taters and those other tasty ingredients in the stock pot are tender, remove from heat and place ingredients into a blender. Puree until smooth and pour back into your stock pot. (You can also use an immersion blender if your prefer)
  8. Remove the flesh away from the skin of the squash and place in your blender along with the half & half. Puree until smooth and add to your stock pot. Return to the stove and allow to simmer on low and stir well.
  9. Add your ginger, curry and salt to the pot.
  10. Your soup is ready to eat! Grab a bowl and dig in!
Vodka Kale Risotto

Vodka Kale Risotto & Acorn Squash

What do you get when two Russians and two Italians walk into a bar? Vodka Kale Risotto. We spun your traditional Risotto by adding vodka and a delicious stinky Italian cheese, Gorgonzola. They’re BFF’s and play well with Russian Kale. In your recent Winter CSA share, we threw in some wonderful kale, garlic and some acorn squash – all of which was used to make this nice little dinner recipe. Don’t forget to serve it with a nice martini, stirred not shaken with 2 olives. (Yes, I said stirred.)

“Happiness is…finding two olives in your martini when you’re hungry.” ~Johnny Carson

You may be telling yourself, “But I can’t make risotto! I’ve heard of chef Gordan Ramsay teleporting directly to people’s kitchens across the globe to swear profusely at them for $!*#ing up his beloved dish.” I cannot confirm nor deny that Gordan Ramsay will swear at you for messing up the risotto but making it is quite easy once you get your technique down. What the heck is risotto exactly? Creamy Italian rice. Simple right? It’s first cooked in a fat (butter and olive oil for this recipe) and cooked slowly, stirring constantly over a period of time in order to release the natural starch from the rice, called amylopectin. FOOD SCIENCE! Once the rice becomes al dente (we’ll get to that part later) we add the cheese to create the yummy deliciousness that is a signature feature of risotto. Still confused? Don’t worry, I’ve given a step-by-step process below on how to make the perfect risotto, every time. Hooray! Lets get started…

Recipe by: Mirinda @ Boistfort Valley Farm


serves 6-8
2 cups Italian arborio rice
1 1/4 cups Italian Gorgonzola cheese (packed and cubed)
1 cup Russian Vodka
1 1/2 cups Russian Red Kale
8 cups of good quality Vegetable Broth (or chicken)
1 small Onion (finely minced)
2-3 cloves of chopped Garlic
8 Tbsp of Butter (good quality pasture raised)
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Tbsp dried Oregano
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 large or 2 medium acorn squash
2-3 Tbsp of chili infused Olive Oil
2 Tbsp of dried Oregano
1 Tbsp Paprika
Salt and Pepper to taste


The first rule of risotto making is to prepare your Mise en place. Which is the French term for “putting in place”, as in set up. Risotto requires constant attention otherwise you can potentially ruin it. So, get everything and I mean everything ready to go and give yourself a nice 20-30 minutes of one-on-one time with your trusty stove top. Scared yet? No? Okay, now we can start.

Vodka Kale Risotto

Lets get started.

  1.  Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees.
  2.  Prepare all of the following risotto ingredients. Cube and pack 1 1/2 cups of Gorgonzola cheese. Finely mince your onion and set aside. Smash and chop your garlic cloves and set aside. Chop up your kale and set aside.
  3. For your vegetable broth, place in a separate stock pot and heat to a medium temperature. This is a key step and remember to always keep your broth at the same temperature that you cook your rice. Let this get to temperature while we take care of some other stuff.
  4. Onto the Acorn Squash… Cut your squash in half, lengthwise and clean out the seeds and goop with a metal spoon. After your squash is cleaned, slice it into 1″ pieces and arrange on a baking sheet.

    It looks so pretty doesn't it?

    Does it look pretty? DOES IT?!

  5. Lightly drizzle your squash with the chili infused olive oil. Sprinkle the dried oregano and paprika on your squash and add a a little salt and pepper to taste. Place in the oven for about 20-25 minutes or until fork tender. (This should take about as long as it will take to cook the risotto)
  6. Lets get back to the main dish. In a large saute pan (preferably something with a thick bottom so you don’t burn the rice) heat your butter and olive oil on medium/low heat. Using a really good quality butter will make a huge difference in how your risotto tastes (in my personal opinion) so stick with a good pasture butter like Kerrygold, Organic Valley or some nice homemade butter from your local farm.
  7. Add your rice and minced onions and cook (stirring frequently) until the rice is transparent and very lightly toasted. This should take around 3-4 minutes.

    Here's your butter, oil, onions and rice begging to be cooked.

    Here’s your butter, oil, onions and rice begging to be cooked.

  8. Now we add the vodka and chopped garlic. Gently stir the rice, vodka and garlic until the booze is well absorbed by the rice.

    Let the rice absorb all of the vodka before adding your broth.

    Let the rice absorb all of the vodka before adding your broth.

  9. At this point, we begin adding the broth. TWO ladles at a time. Add two ladles of broth  the dried oregano, 1/2 tsp of pepper and STIR your risotto constantly until the broth has been absorbed. If you’re arm gets tired, you can always take a quick.  Once that happens, you can add two more ladles of broth and repeat. Risotto is made by adding broth slowly over a period of time. Adding too much liquid at one time can make your risotto turn out runny. Be patient young padawan.
  10. Open up your oven and check on your squash. Is it done? Good. Now remove it and set aside. Dinner is almost ready!

    Halfway there. Your risotto should start taking on it's creamy character.

    Halfway there. Your risotto should start taking on it’s creamy character.

  11. Now here’s the tricky part. Just because we have 8 cups of broth in that separate pan does not mean you’ll always use up the entire pot of broth. It’s always good to have a little too much broth leftover than not enough broth when you’re learning this dish. Good judgement comes into play at this stage. As you’re stirring (you didn’t forget the part about stirring constantly right?) give your risotto a little taste. Does it need salt? Add a little. How close is it to being al dente? What the heck does al dente mean? This is where we use the smear test. Here’s a great link you can use as a guide.
  12. Using the smear test link above – when your rice starts to look like the piece on the lower left, add your chopped kale. Now you can start adding your broth ONE ladle full at a time. Don’t forget to stir!
  13. Check your rice again. Does it look like the lower middle piece in the photo of the link I provided you? Yes? GOOD! Now you’re al dente. Remove from the heat and add your Gorgonzola cheese. Stirring well until all of the cheese has melted and is incorporated into the dish. The final product should look creamy and firm but not runny.
  14. Serve your risotto with the yummy squash you just pulled out of the oven and dust with a little paprika. Congratulations, you just made risotto! Enjoy!
Brie and Pear croissant

Brie and Pear Croissant

I had the pear dream again. Intensely slicing a ripe, juicy pear and savoring each delectable bite. Yes. I think I’m insane. Wait. No. I’m thinking of Scott Thompson in an episode of Kids in the Hall from 1989. Never mind, lets get back to the recipe. Pears paired with Brie paired with arugula and pear vinaigrette. What can I say, you can’t really go overboard with the pear puns. In your first winter CSA shipment, we sent you some nice red pears from Eastern Washington and lunchtime is a great please to incorporate them. Pears and Brie go together like… pears and brie of course!

1/2 Red Pear
2 Small Croissants
Chopped fresh sage
Orange infused olive oil
Your mission if you cheese to accept it.

Your mission if you cheese to accept it.

  1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees or use your trusty toaster oven (That’s all I did)
  2.  Slice your croissants in half and place on a small baking sheet. Slice 1/2 of a pear into 1/8th” slices and last but not least, slice up some of your brie into 1/4″ slices.
  3.  Lightly drizzle the orange infused olive oil onto your sliced croissants (about 1tsp worth) then arrange your pears and cheese onto the bread. Lightly top with a little fresh sage.
  4. Pop the tray in your oven (or toaster over) for about 5 minutes or until the cheese is nice and melty. Serve with an Arugula salad with Citrus Pear Vinaigrette. For the vinaigrette recipe, please CLICK HERE.

    Almost there…

    Recipe by: Mirinda @ Boistfort Valley Farm

Citrus Pear Vinaigrette

1 1/2 Ripe Pears
Juice from 1 Small Orange (such as a tangelo)
4 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
3 Tbsp. Apple Cider Vinegar (I recommend Braggs)
4-5 Fresh Sage Leaves
Fresh Ground Black Pepper to taste

In your blender, mix all ingredient together until creamy.

Store in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

potato leek soup

Potato Leek Soup

If you give a mouse a few leeks and potatoes, he’s going to make some soup. If he makes some soup, you’re certainly going to have a mess to clean up. As the winter solstice has passed and the sun (hopefully) makes it’s triumphant return, we can keep our bellies full with some amazing recipes from our winter crops. In your December Holiday CSA share, you received a few leeks and root veggies to play with, include those wonderful yellow potatoes. There’s a plethora of things we can make with leeks and potatoes but potato leek soup is undeniably one of our favorites, so please enjoy this variation on a French classic!



4 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
4 Large Leeks
4 Cloves of Garlic
2 lbs Yellow Chieftan Potatoes
6 cups Vegetable Broth
1/2 cup White Wine
1 cup Heavy Cream
2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp White Pepper
Chopped Parsley (or chives) and Creme Fraiche

1 Bouquet Garni wrapped in cheesecloth
(2 Sprigs of fresh thyme, 2 bay leaves, 3 sage leaves, 15 black peppercorns)

Recipe by: Mirinda @ Boistfort Valley Farm


  1.  Remove the outer layer and cut your leeks in half, lengthwise. Rinse each of them by pulling apart all of the layers under cold water. Rinse these very well since leeks can hide lots of little dirty surprises inside. It’s the beauty of organic produce.potato_leek8
  2.  Peel and smash your garlic cloves. Then, peel and quarter your potatoes (don’t forget to give these a bath either).
  3. To begin making your soup, melt your butter in a large soup pot and add your chopped leeks and garlic.potato_leek7
  4. Add your 1/2 cup of wine to the pot and Cook your leeks on medium heat until they are soft and wilted. This should take around 10-15 minutes -be careful not to brown them. When these are done, they should look like the photo below.potato_leek5
  5. At this stage, add your potatoes, vegetable broth and bouquet garni wrapped in cheesecloth. You can also use the old leek wrapping method which I didn’t employ this time around. Not sure what this means? Check out how to make a bouquet garni from Williams Sonoma.potato_leek4
  6. Bring to a boil then cover and let simmer for around 15- 20 minutes or until your potatoes are nice and tender.
  7. Remove and discard the bouquet garni. Purée your soup in a batches in your trusty blender or you can use an immersion blender. I’m taking the blender route with this one. Blend your soup until it’s nice and smooth and return it to the pot.potato_leek3potato_leek2
  8. At this point, add your cup of heavy cream, salt and pepper to the mix. Bring your soup back to a simmer and adjust the seasoning to however you like. Serve hot and garnish with a little creme fraiche, parsley or chives. We used the Italian Parsley from our winter CSA box and a little creme fraiche. Only because we like to say creme fraiche. Creme fraiche!
Accordion Potatoes

Caramelized Shallot and Aged Gouda Accordion Potatoes

In your December holiday box this week we included lots of goodies including a few that were used in this recipe. (Yellow chieftain potatoes, Shallots and Italian parsley). Here’s a little something different than your run-of-mill baked spud – we caramelized the shallots and added some smokey flavor profiles to please your palate.

A wise man once said,

I like baked potatoes. I don’t have a microwave oven, and it takes forever to bake a potato in a conventional oven. Sometimes I’ll just throw one in there, even if I don’t want one, because by the time it’s done, who knows?

I suppose this recipe wasn’t what comedian Mitch Hedberg was intending on making when he ranted about the cooking time of everyone’s beloved baked potatoes. Hopefully he would approve.  Enjoy!

– Mirinda



3 Yellow Potatoes
3 Large Shallots
3/4 cup Aged Gouda
2 tsp Smoked Paprika
1/2 tsp Sugar
2 Tbsp White Wine
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 tsp Butter
Salt to taste
Chopped Italian parsley for garnish
Recipe by: Mirinda @ Boistfort Valley Farm



  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Make deep cuts into each potato, around 1/4 inch apart without cutting through the entire spud. Lightly rub each potato with olive oil and salt.
  2. Sprinkle the smoked paprika throughout the inside of your cuts. Arrange potatoes, cut sides down, in a small baking dish.
  3. Cover dish with foil and bake until potatoes are tender or on the verge of being completely done (about 40 minutes – you’ll need to flip these over at the end of this stage0
  4.  While you’re waiting for these darn things to cook, now is the time to start on your shallots. Gently peel and slice these tear-jerkers to around 1/4 thick. You should have around 1 cup worth of shallots when you’re done.
  5.  In a small saute pan, add 1 Tbsp of olive oil and begin to heat on a low/medium setting and add your shallots and the teaspoon of butter. The goal is to cook these puppies slow and low so if you think your stove is a little too hot, your best bet is to turn it down to avoid burning your shallots.
  6. Continue to cook on low for around 20 to 30 minutes until they are golden brown and begin sticking to your pan a little. At this stage, add the 1/2 teaspoon of sugar to aid in the caramelization process.
  7. Once your shallots really begin to look golden and delicious, add a tablespoon or two of white wine and deglaze those suckers. Yummmmmmmy. If you’re shallots finish prior to the stage of flipping your potatoes, just remove them from the heat and set aside. We’ll get back to those later.
  8. After your potatoes have been cooking around 40 minutes (or when they are close to being done) remove them from the oven and over. Begin adding your aged gouda between all of those little cuts you made in the potatoes. Reserve around 1/4 cup of cheese for later.
  9. Put your spuds back into the oven for another 15 to 20 minutes until they’re done.
  10. Remove from oven and top with the leftover cheese, caramelized shallots and freshly chopped parsley. Bon Appétit!


Pumpkin Rum pie with Candied Pecans

Pumpkin and Rum Pie with Candied Pecans

Pumpkin Pie. Love it or hate it. I’ve managed to convert many who swear they HATE pumpkin pie with this recipe, including my picky husband. This isn’t your traditional pumpkin pie and I refuse to make what Libby’s Canned Pumpkin calls “Famous”. Sorry Libby. This is my first recipe for the Farm and probably one of the first recipes that I’ve had to painstakingly write down. But, in the spirit of Thanksgiving I completed the task and offer you my pie. Yay!

In your most recent holiday CSA share, you received those wonderful little pumpkins known as sugar pies. These aren’t your typical carving pumpkins and are much sweeter and less watery making them perfect for all of your pumpkin dishes. Below, I’ve included instructions on how roast and prepare your pumpkin.

Recipe by: Mirinda @ Boistfort Valley Farm

STEP 1 – Roasting your pumpkin

  1. pumpkinPreheat the oven to 350F and grab a couple small pumpkins. The pumpkin you see to the left is named Pete. Say hello Pete. (I managed to get exactly 2 cups worth from one pumpkin, which is all I needed for the recipe below.)
  2. Grab a SHARP knife and split the pumpkin in two.
  3. With a spoon, scrape out all of the seeds and goop from the center. You can reserve these for later use if you plan on roasting these as well.
  4. Brush the pumpkins with butter on the inside and place face down onto a roasting pan. Line it with parchment paper if you want to avoid scrubbing the pan later.
  5. Roast at 350F for around 45 minutes or until tender. Roasting time varies depending on the size of your pumpkins. When it’s done, you should be able to easily stab it with your fork. Don’t worry, it can’t feel a thing.
  6. When it’s done, remove the the pumpkin from the oven and allow it to cool for around 15 minutes.pumpkin3
  7. Scrape the pumpkin flesh away from the skin and puree in a food processor or blender until smooth

From there, you can use the puree as-is or cook it down to remove the moisture. For the pie recipe I used it as it was. I roasted my pumpkin the day before I embarked on making the pie and crust. You can easily do the same by putting it into a container and placing it in your freezer until you’re ready to use it.

STEP 2 – The crust

Ok, not everyone likes making homemade crust. I know I’m terrible at forming the edges and making it look like something out of a Martha Stuart fantasy. But… I like the taste of it so I’m ok with an imperfect pie edge. If you’re not feeling adventurous you can always buy a pre-made pie crust. I won’t judge you.
Ingredients (makes two 9″ crusts)
 2 1/2 cups All-purpose flour
1 cup Butter (frozen)
1 Tbsp Sugar
1/2 tsp. Salt
1/2 cup Ice water


  1. In a large bowl or food processor with pastry attachment, combine the flour, sugar and salt.crust1
  2. Take a cheese grater and grate your butter. (I’ve found that this incorporates the butter much better, especially for those of you that may not have a pastry knife.)
  3. I’ve used the bowl method for this crust – at this point you can work the butter in with a fork. Blend until you’ve incorporated all of the flour and butter together and it resembles coarse crumbs.
  4. Begin adding ice water 1Tbsp at a time until your mixture can be formed into a ball.crust2
  5. Split the dough into two and roll into balls. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. The end result should be two yummy crusts and a messy counter.
  6. After the the 4 hour + wait time, roll the dough out on a floured board or counter-top (hooray mess!)
  7. Place your crust in your pie pan and press the dough evenly around the edges. At this point you can get creative with your pie edge if you’re feeling ambitious.crust3
  8. Cover and place in your refrigerator until you’re ready to fill it up with the pie filling.


STEP 3 – The illustrious pie


Ingredients (makes one 9″ pie)
2 cups Roasted pumpkin puree
3 Egg yolks
1 Egg
1 can of Sweetened condensed milk (14oz)
1/8 cup Sugar (can be omitted if you prefer)
3/4 oz Spiced rum (and 1 ounce for the chef)
1/2 tsp Freshly grated nutmeg
1 tsp Ground ginger
1/4 tsp Ground cloves
1/4 tsp Allspice
1 tsp Ground cinnamon
3 tsp Pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp Vanilla

1 cup Candied pecans (click here for a recipe)

  1.  Preheat oven to 425F.
  2.  In a large bowl whisk pumpkin, egg yolks and egg until smooth.pie2
  3. Add Sweetened condensed milk, sugar, spiced rum (don’t forget to take a shot for science!), nutmeg, ginger, cloves, allspice, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice and vanilla. Pheww that’s a lot of stuff. Another shot?
  4. Remove your previously made crust from your fridge (or your pre-made crust if you took that route) and pour your filling into the pie pan. Lightly tap and shake it to remove any pesky air bubbles.
  5. Bake in the oven at 425F for 15 minutes.pie3
  6. Remove and cover your crust edge with foil. Put it back in the oven.
  7. Reduce heat to 350F and bake for around 40-50 minutes. Insert a knife in the center and check to see if it’s done. The knife should come out clean. If not, bake for 5-10 minute increments until that baby is done cooking. Cook time varies depending on your oven and may take up to an hour to cook.
  8. Remove from the oven and top with candied pecans. Allow to cool completely before serving.

You’re all done! Now go eat some pie!


Rustic Apple Tart

This free-form tart is easy to make and looks beautiful on a Thanksgiving dessert table!

-1-1/3 cups all-purpose flour
-1/3 cup sugar
-1/8 tsp salt
-6 Tbsp cold butter
-1 egg yolk
-3 Tbsp ice water
-3 cups thinly-sliced, peeled apples (about 3 medium)
-1/2 cup raisins (I used a mixture of Mediterranean raisins & sultanas)
-1/3 cup sugar
-2 Tbsp flour
-1 tsp cinnamon
-1/4 tsp allspice
-1/4 tsp nutmeg
-1 Tbsp milk
Coarse decorating sugar


  1. Place raisins in a very small dish, cover with boiling water and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, combine flour, sugar and salt. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Gradually add egg yolk and water, tossing with a fork until a ball forms.
  3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out pastry into a 14-inch circle. Transfer onto a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet.
  4. Drain water off of raisins. Place raisins and apples in a large bowl. Combine flour, sugar and spices and lightly coat fruit. Spoon over pastry within 2 inches of edges. Fold up edges of pastry over filling, leaving center uncovered. Brush folded pastry with milk and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Cover pastry with a sheet of aluminium foil.
  5. Bake at 375 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until crust is golden and filling is bubbly. (At about 25 minutes into baking, remove foil.) Using parchment paper, slide tart onto a wire rack to cool. Enjoy!

(6-8 servings)
Recipe by Emily Thomas @ Boistfort Valley Farm