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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's cookbook and food truck plans as seen on New Day Northwest. Here's to starting from scratch. Talking about The Old Hen online? Our hashtag is #theoldhen .

Brown Sugar, Walnut & Plum Pound Cake With Maple Frosting Recipe

Walnuts. Plums. Brown sugar. Basically, we re going back into time. The month is August. We’re reaping the blessing of summer but ready to enjoy the dark, moist desserts of fall. We are in heaven… or, you know, at a family reunion where great aunt Margie is still making her best homemade treats for the family reunion – treats we shall never fully appreciate until they are gone.

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Brown Sugar, Walnut & Plum Pound Cake Recipe

Preheat oven to 350F.

  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup eggs
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 cup plum jam
  • 1 cup walnuts, chopped

Cream together brown sugar and butter. Mix in eggs. Then add dry ingredients. Lastly, mix in plum jam & walnuts.

Spray bundt pan with baking spray. Pour batter into bundt pan evenly. Bake for about 40 minutes or until knife poked in middle comes out clean.

Allow to cool for about 15 minutes then carefully turn onto platter.

Maple Frosting Recipe

  • 1 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 ounces of unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoons of water
  • 1-2 teaspoons of Mapleine
  • Dash of salt

Whip all ingredients together well. Spread over top of cake. Top with 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts if desired.

It is time to pull out the old recipe cards and bring back the days of sugar plum everything.

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Homemade Plum Jam Recipe

Nothing makes one feel more like an old-fashioned kid like balancing while walking across a log and picking fresh fruit from a tree. One of the most underrated fruits of all is the plum. How could we possibly overlook the colors, the smells and the taste of the gorgeous plum? Let us go hipster and bring it back, shall we?

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Plum Preserves Recipe

  • 3 cups plums, pitted & diced
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 box SURE-JELL Fruit Pectin (save the other half for your next small-batch recipe)
  • 3 1/2 cups sugar

Place fruit and water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

Stir in pectin, bring to a boil, then stir in sugar. Bring to a boil again and boil for one minute. Place jam in food processor or blender (fit blender lid loosely so hot air can escape). Pulse until the texture you like.

Place in jars and keep in refrigerator until ready to use.

Next up? The tire swing.

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Easy Coconut Macaroon Cookies Recipe

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It is estimated that between 20,000 and 30,000 laborers were needed to build the Great Pyramid at Giza (pronounced “gee-zuh”) in less than 23 years. By comparison, Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris took almost 200 years to complete. But I have wonderful news. You can make these coconut macaroon pyramids in less than one hour with only one laborer and just three ingredients.

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Photo & Styling: Ariel Tustin of Whiskey & Honey 

Easy Coconut Macaroons Recipe

  • 6 cups shredded, sweetened coconut
  • One -14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 dash of salt
  • 12 ounces of the best semi-sweet chocolate your money can buy (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F. Line 2 half-sheet baking pans with parchment paper (important). Stir sweetened condensed milk and salt into shredded coconut until coconut is completely coated. Scoop coconut mixture by 1/2 cupfuls at a time onto baking sheets. Press each cookie together just a bit so that it is a little firm.

You can form the cookies into circles with a large ice cream scoop (as ones pictured) or triangles and cookies can be small or large but the size you choose will help determine the baking time. For smaller cookies, watch closely and decrease baking time.

Bake for about 20-30 minutes or until cookies are golden brown on top. It is important to allow them to cool on the baking sheets before moving. Once cooled, they can be removed with a spatula.

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If you like, you can heat up chocolate in a double boiler on very low heat and then gently dip or drizzle cookies with chocolate. Place in refrigerator or freezer for about 20 minutes to firm chocolate. Makes about a dozen large macaroons… er… ancient works of art.

 

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Chicken Cordon Bleu Recipe

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In this post we will explore how to cook a perfect chicken breast. We will explore traditional Chicken Cordon Bleu filling and try a new, melty, and delightful alternative recipe. And, perhaps most importantly, we shall splurge and top it all off with a new heavenly cheesy, garlic-y sauce which will change your life forever. Amen.

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Cooking a perfect chicken breast comes from three very important steps:

  1. Lay chicken breast on counter and cut your chicken breast in half. the long way so that when you unfold it, it will look like a butterfly (thus the “butterfly cut”). Then, using a meat hammer, pound chicken until it it pretty much level all the way across. This will promote even cooking which will lesson dry or under-cooked areas.
  2. Soak in buttermilk. Many chicken recipes benefit from being soaked in buttermilk overnight (or around 8 hours) to help make for moist chicken. This isn’t a must, but it is another way to be sure your chicken turns out amazing.
  3. Cook to 165F in the thickest part of the piece of chicken. This is crucial for food safety and for creating moist chicken. Undercook, and that flu you thought your family had is actually food poisoning. Over-cook and you get chicken jerky. Cook to 165F, and you’ll have perfectly moist chicken every time. Meat thermometers can be testy, though, so be sure you get a reliable one. Don’t ask me how I know this. I just do. I find that digital ones seem to work best. My favorite is the iDevices brand but there are less fancified ones you can start with too.

Now that we have explored chicken breast basics, let’s get rolling with this amazing recipe.

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Chicken Cordon Bleu Recipe

  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 4 fresh chicken breasts
  • 4-8 pieces sliced smoked ham (not honey ham)
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 8 ounces gruyere, grated (or you can go traditional with swiss cheese)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 small yellow onion, finely diced
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 – 5 ounce package croutons, ground (or Panko crumbs)
  • 1 recipe of cheese sauce (this recipe from above is below)

Pour buttermilk in 9X13 pan. Set aside.

Butterfly cut and then pound evenly chicken breasts.

Place cream cheese, grated gruyere (or swiss), minced garlic, diced onion, and a dash of sea salt & pepper into mixing bowl. Mix until well-combined.

Roll about 3 ounces of cream cheese mixture into each piece of ham (or you can use 2 slices of ham per piece if you like to be generous).

Place a ham bundle inside of each chicken breast. Coat all chicken breasts in buttermilk and leave in 9X13 pan covered with plastic wrap in refrigerator overnight. (Chicken is okay to leave in buttermilk for up to about 48 hours if you have delays that change your plans.)

When you are ready to bake, remove chicken from buttermilk, salt & pepper top of each chicken breast, coat with ground croutons (or Panko crumbs), and place in a greased pan. Bake at 350F for about 20 minutes or until chicken reaches 165F in thickest part of breast. Let chicken rest for about 15 minutes before serving.

Cheese Sauce Recipe

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, freshly grated
  • 8 ounces gruyere cheese, freshly grated
  • 1/4 cup mustard (regular or dijon work well)
  • 4 cloves fresh garlic, minced
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground pepper

Place all ingredients in a medium size saucepan. Stirring continually, cook over medium heat until cheese melts and then incorporates into the heavy cream.

Pour sauce generously over your Chicken Cordon Bleu – reinvented. Breaking the cheese-y rules never tasted so good.

 

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Chocolate Bourbon Cherry Cups Recipe

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Sometimes a girl wakes up on a Monday morning in August and thinks of a recipe that is completely out of season but simply must be made.

Today was that day.

Chocolate Brandy Cherry Cups is that out-of-season recipe.

I am that girl.

And, it is my mission to share it with you just hours after it was created. Mission accomplished. Because I love you. And because chocolate… and cherry… and bourbon…

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Preheat oven to 350F.

Cake Ingredients

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 2 3/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup dark cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 20 ounce can cherry pie filling

Place dry ingredients into mixer. Place eggs, buttermilk, oil, butter, and vanilla in a container and beat together well. Mix beaten wet ingredients with dry ingredients. Mix in cup of hot water on low speed.  Scrape down edges of bowl to be sure to incorporate all ingredients into batter. Mix on medium speed for a couple minutes.

Open cherry pie filling. Stir 1/4 cup of bourbon whiskey into cherries. Set aside.

Spray extra large muffin tins well with baking spray. Place 1/3 cup of batter into muffin tins. Place a dollop (1-2 tablespoons) cherry pie filling on top middle of batter in muffin tins. Place another 1/2 cup of batter over cherry pie filling. This recipe makes 12 large Chocolate Bourbon Cherry Cups.

Bake for about 25 minutes.

Frosting Ingredients

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water

Stir together until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap until ready to use.

Allow cakes to cool for 5-10 minutes. Turn upside down onto a baking sheet.  Pour frosting over each cake. To fully coat, use a butterknife to frost around edges.

Enjoy warm. Enjoy out-of-season. Enjoy within hours of this ruthless girl’s post.

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Stuffed Jalepeno Poppers Recipe

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Zip! Zap! They are like an exciting comic book on a plate. You enjoy the bacon and cheeses then suddenly. Zowie! You have found an adventure. You have found a stuffed jalepeno popper.

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Ingredients

  • 12 fresh jalepeno peppers, cut in half and seeds removed (It is best to use disposable gloves for this process to prevent accidental burning. Don’t ask me how I know. I just do. )
  • 1 cup cream cheese
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 2/3 cup high quality bacon bits
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups Panko bread crumbs
  • 1 1/2 cups barbecue sauce (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F. Place jalepeno peppers on a baking sheet.

Put cream cheese, garlic, mozzarella, bacon bits, salt, & pepper in mixing bowl. Mix until well combined.

Generously fill each jalepeno half with cream cheese mixture.

Place each filled jalepeno pepper face down in Panko crumbs until well-coated.

Put back on baking sheet crumbs facing up.

Bake for about 30 minutes or until tops are golden brown.

For added zing, serve with barbecue sauce.

Makes 24 spicy appys. A must-have for every spicy party. Zing!

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Mint Mojito Cocktail Recipe

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The most refreshing drink in all the cocktail kingdom has to be the mint mojito. She is light, beautiful, and more daring than she appears. If your mint has taken over your garden space like mine has, it is time to entertain your neighbors with mojitos. And fast.

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Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup fresh lime juice (this may take about 4 limes)
  • 3/4 cup club soda, chilled
  • 1 1/2 cups rum
  • Leaves from about 12 sprigs of mint
  • 4 cups crushed ice

Place sugar, lime juice, club soda, and rum into a pitcher and stir. Add mint leaves. Using a wooden spoon, press into mint leaves so that you can mull them into your drink. A couple of minutes should do the trick. You don’t want to press them too much as they would turn bitter. Stir in crushed ice.

Divide mojito into 4 – 12 ounce glasses.

You shall soon find yourself lacking enough mint to go around; yet, somehow, you will have an overwhelming number of new, minty-fresh neighborhood friends. You’re welcome.

 

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Peanut Butter Maple Truffles Dipped in Granola Recipe

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If there is one combo I am sure of on this planet, it is maple and peanut butter. I’ve known this since I was five and my grandpa sat beside me giggling while I ate my pancakes topped with peanut butter and maple syrup. He called me his “Peanut Butter Girl”. Ever since, it has been my goal to share this beloved combo with the world.

Today, I present thee with truffles – Peanut Butter Maple Truffles Dipped in Granola.

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  • 1 cup crunchy peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon maple extract
  • Dash of sea salt
  • 1 cup Golden Girl Forest Maple Granola
  • 2 – 2 pound bag Ghirardelli Chocolate Melting Wafers (total 4 pounds)
  • Remaining 1 1/2 cups granola from bag of Golden Girl Maple Granola (for rolling)

Using a mixer, mix peanut butter & butter together. Add powdered sugar, maple extract, salt and then the cup of granola.

Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Roll peanut butter mix into about 4-5 dozen 1-inch balls. A small cookie scoop will help keep measurements equal or if you’re experienced with balls, you can just eye it. (This joke inserted here just for naughty, loyal readers.)

Place chocolate into a microwave-safe bowl, heat in 30-second intervals stirring in between each and continue until almost melted. Stir remaining unmelted chocolate into the melted for a gorgeous chocolate. Place remaining granola in a medium bowl.

Dip each ball into melted chocolate. Allow excess chocolate to drip back into chocolate bowl. Roll balls into granola and place on another tray lined with parchment paper. Allow to harden in a cool place. If you make a one batch, you can place them on a tray in the fridge for about 20 minutes to set the chocolate.

Because the world needs more truffles. And more maple and peanut butter combos. And sweet grandfathers who giggle while their little five year old granddaughter makes major life decisions about what to have on her pancakes.

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Homemade Praline Swirl Ice Cream Recipe

Everything caramel is better.  Just ask Ben and Jerry and Haagen and Daz and, basically, any nut.

Never mind the small talk. Imma just gonna let this recipe speak for itself with a moment of silence….

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Make caramel sauce first so it has time to cool to room temperature.

Caramel Swirl Ingredients

  • 1/2 sticks butter, softened
  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • Dash of sea salt
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Melt butter on medium-low heat, watching closely so it does not burn. After melting butter, add sugar. Stir and let simmer on medium heat until it looks foamy. Carefully stir in cream as it will splatter. After starts to boil again, stir in salt and vanilla. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.

Vanilla Ice Cream Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)
  • 5 pounds ice cubes, for chilling
  • 1 1/2 cups Ice cream salt, for chilling
  • Caramel Sauce (recipe above)
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans

Put sugar, salt, heavy whipping cream, milk, lemon juice, and vanilla into ice cream canister and stir well. Place blade in and lid on canister tightly so that no ice cream salts get inside.

Finish putting ice cream maker together completely. Plug in machine to make sure everything is set up correctly. If successful, unplug for now and go to the next step.

Place ice all around the bottom of canister. Carefully pour a layer of ice cream salt over the ice. Continue these layers until you reach the top of the canister. Plug ice cream maker in again and allow it to church until it stops (or almost stops) on its own. This will take about 20-40 minutes.

When ice cream is done churning, place a half of it in an air-tight container. Add a layer of caramel sauce then a half of chopped pecans. Add  the other half of the ice cream then add other half of caramel sauce and rest of pecans. Freeze for a couple of hours first so ice cream can firm up.

Swirly goodness and mercy and peace on earth.

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Homemade Pulled Pork Sammich Recipe AKA The Hot Mess

If you’re having a casual, little dinner party for about six people and want to go all out, let me introduce you to The Hot Mess… in the best possible way, that is. Have plenty of wet towels ready. And snobby beer. And bibs.
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Other recipes you will need if you choose to build this fabulous sammich from scratch… or, you know, you can ignore the challenge and buy some of it at the store. 
Slow-Cooked Pulled Pork in Barbecue Sauce Recipe
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • One 14.5 oz. can petite diced tomatoes
  • One 12 oz. tomato paste
  • 1 1/2 cups apple juice
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 2 teaspoons. kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika (not regular paprika)
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/3 cup BBQ rub (I used Grill Mates Sweet & Smoky Rub)
  • 2  tablespoons yellow mustard

Sizzle olive oil in a pot.

Place diced onion into very small pieces and add to the oil. Cook until onions appear translucent.

Add tomato puree, tomato paste, water, vinegar & molasses.

While sauce is simmering, continue to  stir and add dark brown sugar, kosher salt, pepper, smoked paprika (not regular paprika), & chili powder.

Finally, add BBQ rub (I used Grill Mates Sweet & Smoky Rub), cranberry juice and yellow mustard.

Place sauce in blender and cover with lid. Blend until all tomatoes & onions blend into the sauce. Set aside.

Preheat to 325F
On stove top over medium-high heat, drizzle olive oil in a clean large oven-safe pan. Brown pork shoulder on all sides.
Pour barbecue sauce over pork shoulder and place in oven with a lid on pan. Continue to cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the shoulder reads 185 degrees F, about 4 hours. Remove the pork from the oven and let stand until cool enough to handle, about 30 minutes. Shred pork.

To build your sammich, cut open hamburger buns and butter the insides of each. Lay with butter sides up on a baking sheet. Watch closely while broiling until golden brown.

Remove toasted buns from oven. Top with pulled pork, coleslaw, and crispy fried onion strips.

She’s slow. She’s chaotic. She’s a lot of work. And she is sooooo worth it.

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© Deanna Morauski 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016