Thursday, 31 October 2019

thank you

we are closed now for the season.
thank you so much for visiting us!
we close the farm gate with a smile and a full heart every year.  
what a wonderful autumn it has been.

have fun tonight trick or treating!
scary hugs

Thursday, 24 October 2019

how can this already be our last weekend of the season?
we still have empires and mutsus to pick...

two beautiful apples to end end our harvest with.

there’s a pumpkin patch to peruse! 

are  you ready for halloween? 

drop in for a spell! 

there is free parking for witches 

i love a bowl of soup on a rainy day.
it always rains on halloween , so
here is a super easy basic recipe for squash soup 

we are dumpers in our family, so this recipe isn't exactly precise.
just adjust it to your liking for taste and texture. 

 2 medium  squashes
i used a butternut an a sunshine buttercup
1 onion diced 
enough butter to caramelize the onion in - about 2 tablespoons 
curry to taste…i used a generous tablespoon of red curry paste 
2 -900 ml cartons of vegetable or chicken broth 
1 can of coconut milk 
2 fresh sage sprigs
 1/4 cup of roasted pumpkin seeds

roast both squashes whole in a 350˚ oven for 45 minutes to and hour.
it will cut and peel so easily after it is cooked. 
while the squash is cooking, heat the butter in a large pot.
add the onion and cook until caramelized and then add curry paste.
cook for a couple of minutes to blend the flavours. set aside. 

when the squash is cooked, peel off the skin, remove the seeds and cut into  smaller pieces. 
add this to the pot of curried onions.
add the chicken broth, and half of the can of coconut milk. heat through. 
 blend this in batches until smooth.
this is where you could add more chicken broth if the soup is too thick.
adjust the seasonings. perhaps a little salt and pepper? a little ginger? 

pour the soup back into the pot to keep warm.

in a fry pan, heat another tablespoon or so of butter..
add sage leaves and cook until crisp and the butter is brown..about 5 minutes.

ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with another swirl of coconut milk,
the fried sage leaves and roasted pumpkin seeds. enjoy!

see you soon,

Friday, 18 October 2019

yes we still have apples to pick!
mutsu, empire and red delicious apples are available this weekend. 
you will also find a handful of many other varieties.
we have oodles of pumpkins too!

what a short and sweet week! literally!
i made candied apple slices. 

 i intended to use them as a garnish on some kind of lovely autumn cake,
but somehow, garnishing a cocktail seemed way more fun!
easy recipe… easier to enjoy!

you will need a few apples- i used empires.
super fine sugar 

preheat oven to 350˚
thinly slice apples 
press them in some fine sugar covering both sides and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet
bake for 15 minutes
turn and bake for another 10 minutes.
carefully remove them and place on a clean sheet of parchment paper to become hard.
mine never completely hardened. i made them on a rainy day...too humid perhaps?
i have enjoyed these all week in yoghurt,
 in a bowl of steel cut oats, and just to snack on. 

i call this drink a harvest mule
i just love how the candied apple looks like a heart! 

we are spoiled rotten to have fresh apples and fresh cider available all autumn. 
and i have a big healthy pot of rosemary,
 bought from our local amazing market “the prince of whales country market.”

1/3 cup apple cider
1/3 cup ginger beer (which incidentally has no alcohol)
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 ounce of vodka
a lemon slice to garnish
rosemary sprigs to garnish
fresh cranberries to garnish
candied apple slices to garnish 
tablespoons of coarse brown sugar and 1 tablespoon of flaked salt to rim the glass 

combine the sugar and salt on a plate
rub the lemon around the rim of a pretty glass, then dip in the sugar and salt. 
pour in the cider, ginger beer, lemon juice and vodka.
garnish with the lemon slice, rosemary, cranberries, 
and a couple of candied apple slices.
you could use a fresh slice of apple in the cocktail too. 
i didn't use ice. wouldn't it be fun to make cubes out of cider?

did you know we have fresh apple cider for you?
we are pressing the last batch of the season today. 
it is a gorgeous late harvest blend. 
it freezes beautifully.
pour a little out (it expands when it freezes)
make yourself and a friend a drink…then freeze it.  

its lovely to watch autumn play on the farm.…
so many gradual transformations. 

cheers and warm hugs,

Thursday, 10 October 2019


thank you for including us in your family’s traditions. 
we are very fortunate to have wonderful guests visit us every year.

we are grateful that we have a marvelous harvest to share with you this long weekend. 
we are open on monday too!

mutsu, jonagold, golden delicious, ambrosia, red delicious, idared, 
russet and empire apples are available for picking. 


oh these are such a fabulous apple…
beautiful texture, and a flavour that keeps improving as the harvest unfolds. 
wonderful out of hand as well as a great choice to bake with. 
they store very well.
i always think of our first dog, mutsu, and miss her. she lived to be 17! 


another favourite for bakers...hello cakes and pies!
as the name suggests, they are cross of a jonathan and a golden delicious.
large, firm, juicy and bursting with flavour, they are an excellent apple to enjoy fresh. 

golden delicious 

i love how these are sweet and crisp with a mellow flavour.
 they are thin skinned so you don't have to peel them if you are making applesauce.
 goldens keep their shape when baked. 

one of our favourite restaurants uses only golden delicious apples 
 in their to die for desserts.


sooo juicy and sweet…move aside honey crisp!
these will be your new favourite!
they are mellow, sweet, crispy and juicy. ambrosias are slow to brown...
perfect for snacking, salads, and cheese trays. 
tuck some aside for baking too as they keep for a few months.
these were discovered in an orchard in the 1990's in british columbia. 

 red delicious

delicious indeed..with its sweet, creamy flesh.
this is one apple that improves after being stored for a month or two. 
small, and perfect to tuck in a lunch box, knapsack, golf bag, or purse..
red delicious apples travel very well! their thick skin is responsible for this. 

red delicious are wonderful to use decoratively too..
they look fabulous for a long time in a wreath, or swag, or planter.
when i was a kid i thought this and macintosh were the only 2 types of apples. 

ida red

my second choice for pies..i love their complex flavour that hints of lemon.
this is the apple that we squirrel away in our extra fridge because they store amazingly well. 
this year's crop is on the light side. 
idareds are so good in an apple sauce too..imparting a pink colour when you leave the skin on. 

i thought pumpkin tarts would be kind of fun to have instead of pumpkin pie. 
this recipe was adapted from rosie daykin’s butter baked goods cook book. 
a beautiful, canadian book that we use very often.
i had some baked squash left over and substituted it for pumpkin pureé.
the flavour was so much more intense and the texture was so luxuriously rich too. 
goodbye canned pumpkin forever. 

for 24 tarts you will need 
2 eggs
2 cups squash - i used sunshine buttercup 
2 tablespoons of sugar
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 can of sweetened condensed milk

preheat oven to 375˚

roll out the pastry to 1/8 inch thick.
cut out 4 inch circles and gently tuck them into muffin tins. 
bake blind for 12 minutes,
 remove beans or weights and then bake for another 10 minutes.
use the remaining pastry to cut out leaf shapes to garnish. 
bake these on a separate parchment lined cookie sheet for 15 ish minutes. 

in a food processor or large bowl, combine until well mixed; 
squash, eggs, sugar, salt, spices, and condensed milk.
pour this into the prepared tart shells. 
bake for 40 ish minutes.  
remove from tins and let cool on a wire rack.

  garnish with leaf shapes and serve with a good dollop of whipped cream.  

we have so much to be thankful for! 
enjoy this long weekend.
i hope you can cherish anything that you are grateful for.
warm hugs,

Thursday, 3 October 2019

hello october

i love how october begs you to wear your favourite sweater again
 and visit your favourite apple orchard!

we are starting to pick our russets and smoothies. 
cortland, empire, royal gala, and spartan apples are still available. 
you may wish to have a peek at previous blog posts for their flavour profiles. 


the black sheep of the apple family!
although not the prettiest apple, they do have quite a distinct texture
and flavour, often compared to a pear.
russets are a little dry and and quite sweet with a delicate nutty flavour. 
their russeted skin is a wink at their perfect name.
russets are frequently used in cider making. 

russets are perfect to dehydrate or bake with, and also enjoy fresh. 
they are lovely sliced into a salad, or placed on a simple flat bread 
with brie cheese, olive oil, pine nuts and arugula. 


these are a gorgeous early variety of golden delicious but are a little larger and a little sweeter. 
their name still makes me smile! 
juicy and sweet with a lovely thin skin, 
smoothies are so wonderful fresh and also great for every kind of baking. 

 i know we do need the rain, but i find october’s rainy mornings dreary. 
i love baking on these days. 

this apple walnut bread recipe was adapted from an old sweet paul magazine. 
it called for cinnamon, but you may know i broke up with cinnamon, so i changed the recipe a little.
i think sliced candied ginger nestled on the top would be a lovely addition too. 

apple walnut bread 

4 oz walnuts - i used a whole 125 gram bag
1 cup  all purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt 
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 ish teaspoon or a pinch ground cloves 
1 cup brown sugar
3 large apples - i used cortlands  
2 eggs 
2/3 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract 
1 tablespoon coarse sugar 

preheat oven to 350˚
butter and line a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan with parchment paper

spread walnuts on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
bake for 4 ish minutes until golden and fragrant. 
let these cool then coarsely chop.
in a large bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder, salt and spices.
stir in sugar and walnuts.
coarsely grate 2 of the apples.
squeeze out the excess liquid. place apples in a bowl. 
stir in the eggs, oil and vanilla.
make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and add the apple mixture, stirring until just combined.
spoon this into the prepared tin and smooth the surface with a wet 
spoon dipped in the apple liquid. 
core and slice the last apple and press each slice into the top of the loaf 
sprinkle the top with the coarse sugar.

bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. 
let the bread rest in the pan for 5 minutes, 
then place on a wire rack to cool a little.
serve sliced and warm.
 i love my butter, so would recommend serving it with butter, or a dollop of creme frâiche. 
this bread is delicious toasted too. 

its surprising how many flowers bloom in the autumn.
somehow i appreciate them a little more, knowing that they’ll soon be kissed by a frost.

i especially love this last, random hollyhock that showed up in the valley. 
a welcome, uninvited guest. i have been saving the seeds. 

see you in your cozy sweater this weekend!

the valley is starting to look a little spooky…