Archive for the ‘Recipes’ Category

(Repost of pie dough recipe from my post about Gravensteins.)

I normally try to avoid making pie. I am a pastry murderer. Recently, though, I started using my mother’s pie crust recipe — I should have been using it years ago. It really is no fail. If you are like me, and your pastry could be used as crack-fill in your century-plus home, you might want to give this a whirl!

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When I was a child, the advent of crisp autumn weather meant our free time was spent at my grandparents’ Annapolis Valley farm. The smell of hay and damp, dew-covered grass mingled with the salty breeze blowing across the Minas Basin and the heady ambrosia of ripening apples. The sun low in the sky, touched the brow of the North Mountain, frosting the fields and trees with a warm, golden glow.

While the adults worked, my brother and I would play — exploring the barn, hide and seek in the orchard, clambering amidst the apple bins. The autumns of my childhood are framed by the sides of an old red wooden barn and shadowed around the edges by dust motes dancing in sunshine.

The Gravenstein is an old apple variety. It was discovered in Gråsten, Denmark, in 1669 — a lovely accident of nature that someone chose to nurture, a chance seedling that proved to have qualities worth cultivating. Introduced to Nova Scotia in the early 1800’s by Charles Prescott, who planted them at his estate in Starr’s Point, Kings County, it became popular, and was planted in orchards from one end of the Valley to the other. The apple that Prescott introduced was green with red streaks. The ones currently found in most roadside stands in the valley are of the crimson persuasion, the earliest strain of which was discovered in 1876, in Waterville.

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A solid, easy, multipurpose dumpling recipe is indispensable, in my opinion. It can be used to top a savory meat stew, but can also transform some cooked fruit into a delicious cobbler.

This is my favourite dumpling recipe. It can easily be doubled or halved, depending on need.

Chicken stew and buttermilk dumplings – simmered covered on stove top for 35min.

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With a tip of my hat to George R. R. Martin, I introduce you to my new favourite summer drink.

One can of soda makes two drinks, so grab two glasses and make this for you and a friend!

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