Gouda Bread

The aroma of fresh baked bread speaks of home and comfort.  Adding the Jalapeno Gouda gives this bread a subtle spicy note.  Serve Gouda Bread warm with eggs for breakfast.

Gouda Bread

  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 1 cup lukewarm milk
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 4 ounces Jalapeno Gouda (or flavor of your choice), grated
  • 1 ounce Aged Gouda (or other aged hard cheese), grated
  1. Place the milk and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer and let it proof for 5 minutes.  Using the dough hook, turn the mixer on to low speed.  Slowly add the flour, salt, sugar, and Goudas.  Continue to mix until the dough forms a cohesive ball.  You can adjust the consistency with milk if it’s too dry.
  2. Turn the dough out onto a floured board and knead for 8-10 minutes.
  3. Form the dough into a ball and place in a covered greased bowl.  Allow to rise until double.
  4. Roll out the dough into a rectangle, about 8 inches by 12 inches.  Roll up the dough and place in a greased loaf pan.  Allow to rise again, about 30 minutes.
  5. Cut slits in the top to allow for expansion during baking.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown.  Allow to cool in the loaf pan for 10 minutes before removing.

PRINTABLE VERSION

Three Cheese Pumpkin Cheesecake

Three Cheese Pumpkin Cheesecake

Crust

  • 1 c. granola (no large nuts or raisins)
  • 1/3 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/3 c. dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. fresh grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 6 tbsp. unsalted butter

Filling

  • 1 1/2 c. granulated sugar
  • 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 8 oz Quark, room temperature
  • 8 oz. chevre, room temperature
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Toss the granola, graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and spices together in a medium bowl. Stir in the butter and pat the mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Bake for 15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl and using an electric mixer on low, beat together cream cheese and sugar. Add in quark and beat for 1 minute. Add remaining ingredients and salt; beat until mixture is very smooth, about 5 more minutes.
  3. Transfer batter to prepared pan. Bake on a rack positioned in middle of oven until just set, about 1 hour.  Turn off the oven and leave the cheesecake in the oven for 1 hour with the door cracked open. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, 4 to 5 hours or up to 3 days. Serve with whipped cream.

Printable Version

Adapted from Country Living

Colcannon Cottage Pie

Colcannon Cottage Pie for Dinner

I enjoy serving something special for holidays, birthdays, Wednesdays…I admit it, I like to cook.  Cottage Pie sounded like a perfect fit for St. Patrick’s Day, but I wanted to add a unique touch to distinguish it from my usual Cottage Pie.  In case you are wondering why it is named Cottage Pie rather than Shepherd’s Pie:  the name Shepherd’s Pie is a reference to the protein source which is sheep.  If the protein source is beef, I don’t think we would want to call it Cow’s Pie.  Cottage Pie seems more like comfort food and less like fertilizer.  I muse about these things sometimes.

To make it special, I used Colcannon instead of mashed potatoes.  Colcannon is an Irish version of mashed potatoes with greens mixed in.  It is traditionally served at Halloween, but it works nicely with Cottage Pie.  I then took it a step further by giving it an Appel Farms touch with Bacon Cheddar.  Everything is better with cheese and bacon.

Here’s a song  to get you in a festive mood for making this dish:

Did you ever eat colcannon,
Made with lovely pickled cream.
With the greens & scallions mingled
Like a picture in a dream
Did you ever make a hole on top
To hold the melting flake
Or the creamy flavored butter
That your mother used to make

Yes you did, so you did
So did he and so did I
And the more I think about it
Sure the nearer I’m to cry
Oh wasn’t it the happy days
When troubles we had not
And our mothers made colcannon
In the little skillet pot.

Colcannon Cottage Pie

Prepare the filling:

Brown the ground beef in a large skillet over medium heat.  Drain any excess fat if necessary.

Brown the ground beef for the filling

Add the onion to the beef.  Cook for approximately 10 minutes or until the onions are soft.

Add the onions to the ground beef and continue to cook

Add the corn, peas, and carrots, cook for 2-3 minutes.  Add butter and stir until the butter is melted.  Stir in the flour, thyme, and garlic.  Stir for one minute.  Turn up the heat and add the beef broth.  Cook and stir until the broth thickens.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Remove the pan from the heat and transfer the mixture to a casserole dish.

Add the vegetables, butter, flour, and herbs

 

colcannon cottage pie filling

Prepare the Colcannon

Put the potatoes in a medium pot.  Cover with cold water by at least an inch.  Add 2 tablespoons salt and bring to a boil.  Boil until the potatoes are fork tender, about 15-20 minutes.  Drain.

 

Melt the butter in a medium skillet.  Add the kale and saute until it starts to wilt, about 3-4 minutes.  Add the green onions and cook another minute.  The word of the day is smaragdine.  That’s the name of the vibrant green color that kale turns when you saute it.  Your life is now complete because you know that.

Wilt the Kale for the Colcannon

Mash the potatoes with the milk.  Fold in the kale, onions, and cheese, add salt and pepper to taste.

Fold in the Bacon Cheddar and Kale

If you ever want to serve the Colcannon on it’s own, it’s lovely with a big dollop of butter on top.

Colcannon

Spread the colcannon evenly over the beef and veggie mixture.

Colcannon Cottage Pie ready to bake

 

Bake at 425F for 20-25 minutes or until the colcannon is golden brown and crispy on top.  Serve and enjoy.

Here’s a printable version for your convenience.

Colcannon Cottage Pie

 

 

Saag Paneer

Saag Paneer and Basmati Rice

They say that you eat with your eyes first.  I totally get that!  If something looks good, you expect it to taste good, and vice versa.  Unfortunately, to a lot of people this dish does not look good.  In fact, it can look a little bit slimy.  Don’t be fooled, it’s totally yummy!  The fragrant spices, mild spinach, tangy yogurt, and creamy Paneer are a heavenly combination.  Saag Paneer is a traditional East Indian dish with a balance of flavors.

Paneer is the go-to cheese for weekly vegetarian nights at our house.  It is so versatile, I can use it in all types of dishes from Asian stir fry to sandwiches ( I will have to share that with you sometime).

Saag Paneer

Cut the Paneer in one inch cubes and place it in a seal-able bag.

Cut up paneer cheese

Mix the turmeric, cayenne, and salt in a small bowl.  Whisk in 3 tablespoons of oil.

Indian spices and salt

Pour the marinade in the bag with the Paneer and gently massage the bag to evenly distribute the marinade.  Let that marinate in the refrigerator while you prepare the other ingredients.

Marinate the Paneer Cheese

Lightly saute the Paneer until it just begins to brown.  YUM!

Saute paneer cheese

Set the Paneer aside, then add more oil to the same pan and saute the onions and chile.

Saute onions

Keep sauteing the onions until they are well caramelized.  They should be a lovely toffee color.  This brings out the sweetness in the onions.  Once the onions reach a golden color, add the garlic, ginger, garam masala, coriander, and cumin.  Saute 3-5 minutes.  Add water as needed to keep it from drying out and the spices from burning.

Cook onions until well caramelized

Remove the pan from the heat and gently stir in the yogurt.

Add spinach and yogurt to onions

Mix spinach, onions, and yogurt in saucepan

Add the Paneer back in and cook for another 5 minutes or until heated through.

Add Paneer to spinach mixture

ENJOY!

Saag Paneer and Basmati Rice

For your convenience, here’s a printable version.

This recipe is adapted from a recipe by one of my favorite Food Network cooks: Aarti Sequeira

Low Carb Chicken Divan

Low Carb Chicken Divan

 

In the middle of all the craziness of the last few months, I was asked to write an article for a Low Carb Magazine and share a recipe with their readers.  I was very honored and more than a bit intimidated, but since cheese is naturally low carb and since I have stacks and stacks of cheese recipes, I decided to do it.  As I was sorting through my recipes I realized that I love carbs. I really love carbs. My recipes have a lot of carbs! Did I mention that I am prediabetic and should watch my carbs?  Writing the article was convicting.

Things have been a bit crazy starting in September with lots of little things going on. We remodeling the room over the garage.  Elizabeth (my blogging cohort) left to focus on her own business.  My daughter got married.  Our new creamery opened.  Little things like that. Okay, those aren’t little, those are big!  Then the holidays hit so my one month break from blogging stretched into four months.

I missed this so much.  Testing and tasting and sharing are so gratifying.  Writing the article reminded me of why I love sharing.  I’m really happy to be back and I have a bunch of new ideas for recipes that I think you will love!

Because of the article and my pangs of guilt, I was inspired to share a low carb recipe today.  It may be the only one and I will go back to eating lots of carbs, but I’m still basking in the enthusiasm of my New Year’s resolution to eat healthier.  Recipes like this make eating healthy a whole lot easier.

Chicken Divan

Prep the ingredients:

First, cook some chicken and cut it into bite size chunks.  I used boneless, skinless chicken breast, but chicken thighs would be good too.

Cut up chicken

Steam some broccoli.  It will cook more later so don’t overcook it!

Steamed broccoli

Put the broccoli and chicken in a large bowl.  Set aside.

Chicken and broccoli

Make the Bechamel:

Bechamel sounds so much richer than cream sauce, doesn’t it?  Start by melting some butter in a skillet.Melted Butter

Once the butter is completely melted and most of the water is cooked out*, add the flour.  Yes, I said this is a low carb recipe, not no carb.  Please forgive me, I’m doing my best.

*Most butter in the US contains 15-17% percent water, generic brands have the most.    European butter has significantly less.

Cook the flour and butter until the raw flour taste is cooked out.  It only takes a couple of minutes, but it makes a world of difference in the flavor.

Roux

Stir in some half and half.  You can use lowfat milk if you want, I won’t stop you.

Add half and half to the roux

Cook, stirring continually, until the bechamel starts to thicken.  Add the Maasdammer a little bit at a time.  Maasdammer is in the Swiss family and has a lovely flavor that is creamy and sweet, making it perfect for a sauce.

Maasdammer

Grate on a little bit of fresh nutmeg.  This is optional, but highly recommended.

Nutmeg

Put it all together:

Add the sauce to the chicken and broccoli.

Cheese sauce

Mix together.  Doesn’t that look luscious!

Chicken Divan

Grate some Parmesan.  The Parmesan adds a sharp nutty flavor to the divan.

Grated Parmesan

Spread the chicken and broccoli mixture into an oven proof casserole dish and sprinkle Parmesan over the top.

Parmesan

Make that LOTS of Parmesan.

Chicken Divan

Bake until bubbly and golden brown.  Enjoy!

Low Carb Chicken Divan

For your convenience, here’s a printable version.

 

Nokkelost Quiche

Nokkelost Quiche

I am really excited for you to meet two new kids on the block!  We are now making Havarti and Nokkelost.

Our newest cheeses at Appel Farms

Nokkelost means “Key Cheese” in Norway and goes by the same name in Sweden.   It is very much like the popular Dutch Leyden.  Nokkelost is flavored with cumin, caraway, and cloves, making it perfect for a Christmas treat.  Close your eyes while you let it roll around on your tongue and visions of sugar plums will dance in your head.  It’s also one of the prettiest cheeses we have (don’t tell the others, they might get jealous).

Look for Nokkelost in select grocery store chains around the Pacific Northwest during the holidays.  Don’t worry, you don’t have to wait for Christmas to enjoy this cheese!  Nokkelost is available right now at our Cheese Shop and at Everybody’s Store.   Everybody’s Store has it available online.

We can talk about the Havarti next week, right now, let’s get baking!

Making Nokkelost Quiche
“That’s too much cheese” said nobody ever!

Nokkelost Quiche ready for the oven

Nokkelost Quiche

  • 1 unbaked pastry shell
  • 10 ounces Nokkelost, grated
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 pound Quark
  • 4 tablespoons chives, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  •  1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 6 sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Place the grated Nokkelost onto the bottom of the pastry shell.
  3. Whisk together the eggs, Quark, 3 tablespoons chives, salt and pepper.  Carefully pour over the cheese in the pastry shell.  Spread to cover all the way to the edges.
  4. Sprinkle the bacon and remaining chives over the Quark mixture.
  5. Bake on the center rack of the oven until firm, approximately 30-40 minutes.

 

A little tip: If the crust is browning too much before the filling is set, tent with foil for the last 10-15 minutes.

Nokkelost Quiche and Salad

Recipe adapted from Food.Com

 

 

 

Easy Spanakopita Pockets

Easy Spanakopita Pockets

Once again, my friend Linda from Sound Harvest Delivery shared a winning recipe with me.  I am always delighted to learn a new recipe!

Spanakopita has never been a favorite recipe for me because of the fussy Phyllo dough.  I love the flavor, but making them can be tedious, especially if the dough is a bit dry.  This recipe makes it extra easy by using crescent roll dough but keeps the wonderful flavors of the traditional Greek appetizer.

Spanakopita Pockets

  • 10 oz. fresh spinach or 2 10 oz. packages frozen spinach
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 4 oz. Appel Farms Feta of your choice
  • 4 oz. Mozzarella
  • 4 tablespoons Appel Farms Parmesan, divided
  • 1 ½ teaspoon dill (or 1 tablespoon fresh dill)
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Pinch nutmeg
  • 2 cans crescent rolls

Steam and drain spinach. Chop coarsely. Sauté garlic in 2 tablespoons olive oil. Combine garlic, spinach, Feta, Mozzarella, 2 tablespoons of the Parmesan, dill, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Making Spanakopita

Lay foil onto cookie sheet and spray with non-stick spray. Roll crescent roll flat onto cookie sheet. Separate each roll into four rectangles. Divide the filling evenly between each of the rectangles.  Place the filling on half of the rectangle. Fold together to make a pocket and pinch the edges together.

Making Spanakopita

Lightly brush with milk and sprinkle on the remaining Parmesan.  Bake 18-20 minutes until golden.

spanakopitapockets-4

The Laws of Cheese

There are a few universal laws every cheese lover should know. From the caring of cheese to serving it properly, here are a few points to keep in mind next time you bring some delicious cheeses home to enjoy!

  1. Don’t put unwrapped cheese in the fridge. It will dry out faster than our squeaky cheese gets snatched off the shelves. Instead wrap it in cheese paper or baking paper so it can breathe but still retain the correct texture.
  2. Don’t serve it cold! Cheese is always better at room temperature! The flavors in the cheese will be much fuller if you give the cheese time to warm up from being in the fridge.goudawheels
  3. If you have a cheese plate featuring a variety, use a different tool to cut each one or wash your knife between uses. This is to prevent the transferring of flavors, something like a blue cheese would definitely over power a milder Gouda if the flavors were mixed.
  4. Don’t freeze fresh cheese. Cheeses like Mozzarella and our Paneer will lose its soft texture and become dried out and rubbery.cheeseboard

Gouda Bread

Gouda Bread and butter

Bread is wonderful, bread with cheese in it is out of this world!  A little tip for you: toasting the bread enhances the flavor of the cheese.  I used a combination of Garden Herb Gouda and Aged Gouda to give the bread a nice balance of flavor.  Any combination of your favorite flavors would work.

Garden Herb Gouda and Aged Gouda

kneading the bread dough

Roll the dough into a cigar shape

allow the dough to proof

Gouda Bread

  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 1 cup lukewarm milk
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 4 ounces Garden Herb Gouda (or flavor of your choice), grated
  • 1 ounce Aged Gouda (or other aged hard cheese), grated
  1. Place the milk and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer and let it proof for 5 minutes.  Using the dough hook, turn the mixer on to low speed.  Slowly add the flour, salt, sugar, and Goudas.  Continue to mix until the dough forms a cohesive ball.  You can adjust the consistency with milk if it’s too dry.
  2. Turn the dough out onto a floured board and knead for 8-10 minutes.
  3. Form the dough into a ball and place in a covered greased bowl.  Allow to rise until double.
  4. Roll out the dough into a rectangle, about 8 inches by 12 inches.  Roll up the dough and place in a greased loaf pan.  Allow to rise again, about 30 minutes.
  5. Cut slits in the top to allow for expansion during baking.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown.  Allow to cool in the loaf pan for 10 minutes before removing.

Toasted Gouda Bread

 

“Fake Cheese”

Squeeze Cheese

In our family, the words “processed” and “cheese” paired together will result in a wrinkled nose and furrowed eyebrows. The thought of taking perfectly good cheese, melting it down, and adding more things like whey, emulsifiers, milk, salts, preservatives, and food coloring is something we would never consider. It’s just wrong. Processed cheese is often called “fake cheese” in our house, though a few of us may have some hidden in the back of the refrigerator… *cough* kraft singles *cough*.

Squeezecheese-4

Much of the literature on processed cheese has been hidden away in the past, either protected by patents since expired, or held as trade secrets. Modern cheese making has taken a renewed interest in this type of cheese because of the customization opportunities. Its versatility has made processed cheese one of the most popular varieties in the world. Processed cheese can be packaged into everything from a block, to a slice, to a can! I mean, you can spray cheddar out of a can. Who doesn’t want to draw little smiley faces with cheese??

Squeezecheese-5

Technically, this type of cheese cannot be sold as “cheese”, it has it be called a “cheese food”. The FDA bases how a cheese product is labeled on their milk fat, moisture content, and their cheese content. Cheese content is measured by these three categories.

Pasteurized process cheese – contains 100% cheese
Pasteurized process cheese food – contains at least 51% cheese.
Pasteurized process cheese product – contains less than 51% cheeseSqueeze Cheese (40 of 89)

If you are interested in making your own processed cheese (this way you know exactly what goes into it), click HERE for Aunt Ruth’s recipe and directions! She also had some pretty cute kids over to play with the stuff so you can see what kind of fun you can have with your family!

Squeezecheese-3

Basically what she did is mix milk, cheese, and gelatin creating a simple and much more wholesome version of this versatile cheese! Fun fact! While this Aunt Ruth’s version used only 3 ingredients, the ingredient list for a Kraft single looks more like this…

  • Cheddar cheese (milk, cheese culture, salt, enzymes)
  • Whey
  • Water
  • Protein concentrate
  • Milk
  • Sodium citrate
  • Calcium phosphate
  • Milkfat
  • Gelatin
  • Salt
  • Sodium phosphate
  • Lactic acid as a preservative
  • Annatto and paprika extract (color)
  • Enzymes
  • Vitamin A palmitate
  • Cheese culture
  • Vitamin D3

Squeeze Cheese (30 of 89)

We like Aunt Ruth’s version better 😉