Monday, November 10, 2014

Pumpkin Spice Latte Syrup

It's that time of year again when everyone seems to be going nuts for those pumpkin spice lattes.  I like them too, just not enough to spend $5 for one.  Since I really do like to make my own versions of items like vanilla extract and spiced rum, I figured I might as well try my hand at making my own pumpkin spice flavored syrup.  Here's what I came up with.  I think it turned out really well.

Pumpkin Spice Latte Syrup

2 cups water
1 cup stevia (this is the type that measures 1 to1 like  granulated sugar)
4- 3 1/2' cinnamon sticks
1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1 tsp freshly minced ginger (1/2 tsp ground)
12 cloves
1 vanilla bean, split
1/4 cup pumpkin puree

In a medium sauce pan add your stevia to the water.  Bring just to a boil and reduce heat to low.  Add all remaining ingredients and let simmer for 15 minutes.  Allow the syrup to cool completely.  Line a strainer with cheesecloth and strain the mixture.  Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.  Use 1-1 1/2 ounces for a 12 ounce cup of coffee.

You can make a regular simple syrup if you would rather use sugar.  For this method it is 2 cups of water and 1-2 cups of sugar

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Too Much Of a Good Thing?

Since I don't live in a flood zone or work outside for a living, I have a hard time believing you can get too much rain. In Oklahoma, in July. But we may be close. This is the second time this July my whiskey barrel has held water. 


Monday, July 28, 2014

Vanilla Coffee

Here's an idea for your spent vanilla beans. After you have made your vanilla extract save the beans. They can be used again for making more vanilla of course, but I like to add them to my French press when I make my coffee!  (So good. It is not a heavy flavor like a syrup gives you but I like it a little better.). Just put them in a sealed glass container and keep in the fridge. 

Another idea, put two or three if them in a 1/2 pint jar, add a small cinnamon stick and sweetener of choice. Cover with boiling water.  Make sure you jar is warm. Let cool to room temperature and then cover and put in fridge. Add this to your coffee or hot tea. 

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Sand Plum Whiskey Sour

Last sand plum post for awhile. Saved the best for last. 

Sand Plum Whiskey Sour

1 Cup good bourbon
1/2 cup sand plum juice
1/3 cup each fresh lemon and lime juice (Meyer lemons and key  limes are even better)
3/4 cup simple syrup (if you are making it for these specifically zest you citrus before you juice them and add to syrup)
Maraschino cherries

Put everything into a cocktail shaker (strain the syrup if you added zest) add 1 cup of ice and shake 30 seconds. Pour into cold glasses. Add cherry if desired and serve cold. 



For the redneck touch, serve in a wide mouth pint mason jar!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Bourbon Sand Plum Butter

I have so much pulp from my sand plums!  I have made fruit leather with some and frozen most of the rest. Yesterday I decided to make sand plum butter. The bourbon idea came to me after making a sand plum whiskey sour ( that's another post). Here's the recipe. It was awesome on buttermilk biscuits this morning!

Bourbon Sand Plum Butter

2 quarts sand plum pulp
3/4 cup good bourbon
1 vanilla bean, split
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon each cinnamon and ginger
1/2 teaspoon each nutmeg and allspice

Soak your vanilla bean in the bourbon for at least 30 minutes. 

Combine all ingredients in a large stock pot. Cook over medium heat. When it begins to bubble turn heat to low and cook at least 35 minutes stirring frequently. Cook to desired thickness. 

Remove vanilla bean. Ladle into hot jars and process in boiling water canner for 15 minutes. 

Serve on hot buttered biscuits!  

Thursday, July 24, 2014

More Than Sand Plums

Even though the sand plum picking is still really good, I do have my garden to keep up with. It is producing tomatoes right now, but not much else. The peppers, squashes, and cantaloupe are blooming profusely, but there seems to be very little setting. The green beans are doing fine. I should have planted more. 

We finally built some raised beds this year. We had a perfect spot at the new house to put Them. We set paver blocks between the boxes so it is virtually weed free!  Love it!  I will have to plant a few things differently next year. Like moving the asparagus to a perennial bed and moving the squash to the north rnd to get more sun. It may take a few seasons to get all the links worked out. 

My own little piece of Eden (just go with it)

Romas

Sweet potatoes

Peppers and asparagus

Squash, pumpkin, cantaloupe, and spaghetti squash

Rescue tomatoes. They were almost dead so the nursery just gave them to us.  

Obligatory sand plum pic. The ones I picked yesterday are big as quarters. The biggest I've ever seen. They'll be great for cobbler!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Time for Some Italian


         

The first spaghetti squash came off today!  They haven't done well in the past few year so I am pretty excited!  Can you guess what's for lunch tomorrow?