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The Old Hen B&B closed May 31, 2014. We recommend The Roaring River B&B 425.888.4834 and The Log Cabin B&B 425.533.8278 for your North Bend get-away. Please stay tuned for Deanna and her daughter (affectionately known as Dotter) Brittany's food truck plans as seen on New Day Northwest - The Old Hen on Tour coming in 2014! You can learn & laugh with Deanna & her friend Buffee (yes, that's her real name) during their cooking demos at the Washington State Fair this September and hear their The Old Hen podcast soon. Here's to starting from scratch. Thank you so much for supporting us!

Grilled & Filled Nectarines Recipe

This sexy little vixen was featured on New Day Northwest recently. You must try. Like, today.

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INGREDIENTS:

Olive oil
3 ripe but firm white nectarines

Filling:

4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
4 ounces butter, room temperature
1/2 cup powdered sugar

Garnish:

6 fresh mint sprigs (optional)

Place a grill pan or prepare the outdoor grill over medium – high heat. Cut the nectarines in half and remove pits. Lightly brush inside of nectarines with olive oil so they don’t stick to the grill.

Place nectarines with the cut side facing downward onto grill. To get great grill marks, do not move the nectarines while they cook.

Grill until marks are well formed and they are slightly softened and heated through, about 5-10 minutes.

Combine filling ingredients and mix until smooth. Divide the filling equally, topping the cut side of each grilled nectarine. To take things over the top, use a large decorating bag and large decorating tip to create an amazing swirl on the top. Garnish with fresh mint.

Sweet baby Jesus, it’s take-my-breath-away gorgeous every time.

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Seattle Bites Food Tours

I don’t mean to brag, but I’ve got friends in organic places. And by organic, I mean Pike Place Market in Seattle, Washington.

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I might be a biased Seattle girl, but I really love the Seattle Bites Food Tour. The owners, Mark & Jan Marie, are my dear friends. This week I had the pleasure to making some cookies for them for a presentation they did for Visit Seattle. I can’t wait to show you the cookies they gave to the attendees but, first, let me brag some more about them and what they do…

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I’ve been on the tour four times. Last time I got to meet James. You, too, can meet James at the information booth. He’s a fan of Seattle Bites as well and has the brochure to prove it.

When you introduce yourself, please tell him Deanna from The Old Hen B&B says hi. You might also like to tell him he made the blog. He’s the most photogenic James I’ve ever met, no?

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Everybody who signs up for the tour gets this handy Seattle Bites bag and an ear piece that allows you to hear the tour host even when the fish guys are chanting and doin’ their thing – flingin’ fish, makin’ tourists laugh and stuff.

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The tour hosts are so fun, informative and friendly. I’ve learned so much about Pike Place from them.

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One day I even got to play photographer. I adore this picture of this very happy group member.

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Cutie, baby Seattle’s Best Coffee? Why, yes, please! I also love that every time I’ve been on the tour the eats have been a little bit different. Seattle Bites also serves the biggest bites of any Seattle food tour.

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You must. simply must go on this tour – even if you’re a local. You will never see the market in the same way again. I promise you. Why? Because you will become part of the market’s history and become friends with the shop owners.

Are you ready to see the cookies I made for Seattle Bites? I’m not sure if you are ready for this much cuteness. No really. I’m simply giddy – far more excited than I probably should be.

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Yes, it’s a cookie. A  sandwich cookie to be exact. Complete with lunchmeat, lettuce, tomato, mustard and mayo.

To celebrate Pike Place. To celebrate the name “sandwich cookies” taken far too literal. To celebrate the outstanding Seattle Bites Food Tours, my friends at Seattle Bites are giving away 4 tickets for their tour.

How to Enter

Just leave a comment on this blog post telling us what you love best about Seattle and a winner will be randomly chosen this Sunday, March 17th, 2013 at midnight. The winner will be announced Monday morning the 18th.

This give-away has now been completed.

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Blueberry Pancakes Recipe

I’ve never been one to get into food “holidays”. I mean, who celebrates Bread Machine Month? Please rise. National Pretzel Day? That’s just twisted. National Melba Toast Day? Anyone? Anyone? National Caffeine Awareness Month? Zzzzz. National Kahlua Day? Well, okay. Maybe that one is worth celebrating.

But what kind of innkeeper would I be if I didn’t celebrate national Blueberry Pancake Day? It’s a peer-pressure thing. Really, I just couldn’t wait to take this photo.

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Let the celebration commence.

BLUEBERRY SAUCE RECIPE:

  • 18 ounces blueberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • Juice from 1/2 a fresh lemon
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 2-3 tablespoons cornstarch

Place all ingredients in a medium-large saucepan. Stir together until cornstarch has dissolved. Heat on medium-high until sauce boils. Cook until it becomes thick then remove from heat. If needed, warm up again when pancakes are ready.

PANCAKE RECIPE:

  • 1 cup milk or buttermilk (+2 tablespoons regular milk for thinner pancakes)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries, flour-coated

Whisk pancake ingredients minus the blueberries together until well combined and smooth. Sprinkle blueberries with flour until coated & discard excess flour. Gently stir blueberries into pancake batter.

Place your very best non-stick pan on a burner and preheat to low. It will be tempting to pour the batter upon the pan before it is hot, but do not give in to the temptation. When the time is right, pour 1/3 cup of better into the pan to make about a four-inch pancake.

Wait until the bubbles that form all around the edges of the pancake begin to burst, then flip.

When pancakes are all cooked, smother in lovely blueberry sauce… or with butter and maple syrup… or, you know, just send a friend a card and eat some Melba Toast.

Looking for some helpful pancaking hints? Check out the wildly popular post How to make a Perfect Pancake. You got this.

 

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Seared Scallops With Pan Sauce Recipe

Dear Scallops, I love you sizzling hot and topped with glorious sauce… a buttery wine sauce. Although I love you dearly, our relationship is short-lived for you are far too delicious to stick around for very long. Sin-sear-ly, Deanna

Rinse scallops (a few up to 1 pound) well before cooking if they came packed in juices.

Preheat pan to medium-high with a tablespoon or two of olive oil. Pat dry scallops with paper towels. Season one side with sea salt & pepper.

Cook with seasoned side down first. Salt & pepper the unseasoned side while the first side cooks. Sear until medium brown and no longer stick to the pan. Do not overload &  stack scallops in the pan.

Continue cooking until second side is seared  to a medium brown as well.

PAN SAUCE INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups sherry wine
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons crushed red peppers
  • 1-2 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • Leaves from 5 sprigs fresh thyme, minced
  • Leaves from 2 sprigs fresh basil, minced

Reduce heat to medium. Remove scallops from pan and set aside while making pan sauce. Pour sherry wine into pan. This is called “deglazing the pan”. The end results are delicious.

Add mustard, garlic, crushed red pepper, Old Bay Seasoning and salt & pepper.

Whisk in butter until melted and toss in minced fresh herbs to finish.

If sauce appears to separate, just reduce heat a bit & add more wine to save it.

Serve with sauce and enjoy with pasta, potatoes or a lovely, fresh green salad.

P.S. Nice muscles.

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Memoirs of an Innkeeper

This is me after a much-needed 3 hour nap only, you know, it lasted 10 minutes.

This is me having a typical text conversation with one of my relatives. We don’t need words to understand one another. I love her.

This is me enjoying Pinterest when it lines up perfectly. As if each of these pictures is not enough on their own, but to have them happen upon my wall side by side? Perfection.

After my little nap, I got a call that we had some special guests arriving from Japan. They brought us this stunning candy. We were honored to have our guests. They were so kind and fun and as we found out after a day or two, they were, um, famous.

Koji Yakusho, Japan’s leading actor and his lovely wife Saeko (who is also an actress & can tell a story like nobody’s business – even when there are language barriers) had us laughing every morning.

The New York Times did a story on Koji last week because he had been at a film festival in New York the week before he visited the Snoqualmie Valley. For those of you not up on the world of Japanese entertainment, Koji was also in  “Memoirs of a Geisha” and “Babel.”

And finally, breakfast. Breakfast for newlyweds and guests celebrating their first year of marriage. A breakfast to celebrate new beginnings.

I need a nap.

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Northwest Autumn Salad Recipe

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Because I will be making milkshakes soon. Because it is spring and because I am a Northwest girl through and through, I introduce you to a Pike Place inspired salad.

This week I had a first. This might be a good place to admit it only took me four plus decades to visit Alki Point in Seattle. < hangs head in shame >. Yes, I really did grow up here. And I’ve been to Seattle close a million times but I purposefully wandered my way to Alki while doing an errand in Seattle this week. Nothing was going to stop me. It’s so beautiful that it will not take me four decades to visit again.

See the Space Needle in all her glory? She is 50 this year so the city painted her orange just like when she was first built for the World’s Fair in 1962. I love Seattle and could talk about Washington and it’s beauty for hours but I will now introduce you to our beautiful food.

The Northwest Autumn Salad… with Salmon Pear & Blackberry. She is fresh. She is lovely and she is perfectly delicious for a dinner party or brunch.

While walking through Pike Place recently, I was handed some smoked salmon. I took two steps further and was handed a piece of perfectly ripened pear by another merchant. I knew right away that there was something amazing happening. As I enjoyed them both, my taste buds were dancing.

SALAD INGREDIENTS:

  • A couple of big handfuls of spring lettuce mix
  • 3/4 cup fresh blackberries
  • 2 ounces smoked salmon (Think: Wild, Northwest and Copper River whenever possible) Never settle for “farm fed” salmon.
  • 1/2 ripe pear, diced
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans (optional)

You could toss the salad together, but I prefer to create beautiful layers. Starting with the lettuce, sprinkle the other ingredients on top and enjoy the Northwest on a plate.

SALAD DRESSING INGREDIENTS:

  • Juice from 1/2 fresh lemon (about 1/4 cup)
  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Simply shake the salad dressing ingredients together in a container with a lid & drizzle on your gorgeous salad. This recipe makes about a cup of dressing so you will have leftovers for another day. Just save in the fridge.

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© Deanna Morauski 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014