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archive for cheese

the in-between

Monday, December 28th, 2015

Recipe: carne adovada empanadas

The last week of December – that time between Christmas and the new year – always tends to be one of the busiest at the ski resorts. Lots of people take time off for the holidays and head to the slopes with their families and extended families and friends. After the last good powder day on Christmas, we’ve switched from skiing the mountain to hitting the Nordic trails. The big storm tracks have cleared out and the trails are firming up under bluebird skies for some great skate ski conditions. It’s such a great workout that single digit (Fahrenheit) temperatures actually feel pretty good, unless you stop moving… then it gets quite cold quite fast.


jeremy wears two passes: his and neva’s



I’m also using this opportunity to work on some baby quilts. Actually, LOTS of baby quilts – some of which are for babies that aren’t babies anymore, but bona fide kids! I may be years late, but the sentiment is there. Plus, I carried two of my baby blankets around with me until… well, I have them in my bedroom now. These are flannel rag quilts because I don’t have the skill or time to make anything more complicated. Squares are good enough for me.

soft and colorful fabrics



The neat thing about this period before the new year is that parties seem to have an “anything goes” theme. Festive, yet not necessarily Christmas. I rather like that. It’s all about celebrating the end of 2015, looking ahead to 2016, and eating empanadas. Last month I made a big batch of carne adovada and decided to save some out to make empanadas. These are not traditional in any sense, just a New Mexican take on the revered empanada which turned out to be pretty darn delicious.

water, carne adovada, cheddar, paprika, green chiles, salt, vegetable oil, flour, butter, onion



I used the dough recipe from my favorite Argentine empanadas recipe. It’s straightforward to make and has a nice texture when baked. You can, of course, fry the empanadas (they are so so tasty fried), but my pants can only handle the baked version. Plus, it’s less clean up.

melt the butter and water

pace a pinch of paprika in a well with the flour and salt

mix the liquid into the flour

you’ll wind up with a nice oily dough

wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate



**Jump for more butter**

everyone needs an easy morning

Wednesday, December 16th, 2015

Recipe: green chile bacon egg bake

At last, the cookies are done and gone. If ever I entertain the thought of baking for a living, I need only remember the days of intensive baking in December that make me hate all cookies and chocolate. So why do I keep doing it? Jeremy asked this of me in the car as we drove down the canyon this morning on our way to deliver the cookies. When we started several years ago, it was because buying gifts for his administrative staff wasn’t really in our budget. But each year people loved the homemade cookies and candies so much that it seemed like a cop out to consider buying gifts as opposed to making something from the heart. I suppose I loathe shopping far more than dealing with tempering chocolate. Even now, mere hours after hand delivering the holiday goodies and shipping packages out to some special recipients, the sore back and lack of sleep are but a faded memory. I think as long as I can get outside for a little exercise during the mad frenzy, I can deal with it. After a week with this lingering low-level non-cold, I decided to beat it out of my body by going skate skiing. That felt terrible, but afterward, I felt SO MUCH BETTER.


the start of skate season always hurts so good

don’t forget to shred it on a 9-inch powder day

farewell cookies! go forth and maketh your recipients happy



Now with the cookies out of the way, I can concentrate on what needs to get done in the next couple of weeks. Part of that includes menu planning in Crested Butte because we don’t have access to as many ingredients out there as we do in the Front Range near Boulder/Denver. But honestly, when we are in Crested Butte, I try to avoid involved baking and cooking projects because the whole reason for being in CB is to be outside in all that gorgeousness, not inside in the kitchen. With houseguests coming at the start of the new year, I thought about simple and satisfying things to serve for breakfast. One recipe I settled on was an egg casserole loaded with bacon, green chiles, and cheddar cheese – something quick to whip up before you hit the mountain or the nordic trails!

eggs, milk, salt, roasted green chiles, black pepper, cheddar cheese, bacon

toss the chiles and cheese together

spread the chile-cheese mixture in the bottom of a baking dish



**Jump for more butter**

the abcds

Friday, December 11th, 2015

Recipe: apple bacon cheddar dog (abcd) treats

While working on our annual digital year in photos, I scrolled through a lot of snaps I took of Neva when she was a wee pup. I had completely forgotten about them because I was in such a state of sleep-deprivation for a period of three or four months starting on May 23, 2015. Jeremy was in the other room, but he could tell I was looking at puppy pictures because I kept squealing and cooing at the computer. Neva was so cute, but she was so feral compared to a normal dog – because she wasn’t a normal dog. She was a puppy.


these cute little faces will suck up all of your time



Oh, but now Neva is becoming a really good girl as she settles into a routine of the familiar. She’s now used to watching dogs, cars, and people passing through our neighborhood. She doesn’t flip out when she sees birds anymore (there are so.many.birds). Her favorite places to nap depend on where the sun is hitting the house. Neva knows to ask when she wants to go outside instead of sneaking into the office to piddle next to Jeremy’s desk. I remember how it took forever and a day to walk anywhere because she had to put every damn pine cone, rock, stick, blade of grass, and flower in her mouth. We loved her little adorable puppiness, but we both knew from the start that we couldn’t wait for her to grow into a dog.

Neva always knows when I’m making HER treats in the kitchen. She’ll hang around patiently at my feet until I pop them in the oven, at which point she stares longingly at the oven. I’m not sure how much variety Neva needs in her treat selection, but I know for a fact that these treats are her number one all-time favoritest treats on the planet. I threw them together last month with a bunch of leftover ingredients and she’s been pretty devoted to them ever since. They smell fantastic while they bake because duh – the treats are made with cheddar cheese and bacon! I used applesauce as a healthy binder, along with an egg, and threw in some parsley for her breath. So I wanted to share this with anyone looking to make some extra wonderful goodies for their canine companions.


applesauce, bacon, cheddar cheese, egg, parsley, whole wheat flour

prepping the ingredients for mixing

chop the bacon and parsley fine, especially if you are making small treats



**Jump for more butter**