Apple Cider Press

Visiting my grandmother in the fall always meant picking apples from her backyard orchard and drinking apple cider. Now that she’s gone and my parents live in the house, we knew there would be several trees full of apples that needed to be cidered.

I spent a lovely day picking apples with my parents while Gordon built an apple grinder and press. He used these plans from Matthias Wandel for the grinder and designed a small press using a scissor or bottle jack. Continue reading

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How to Succeed at Dutch Oven Cooking Without Really Trying

Gordon and I both grew up with Dutch oven cooking. Many of my childhood memories include pine trees at a mountain campground, dirty knees, and the smell of chocolate cherry cobbler cooking in a Dutch oven. My mother-in-law cooks almost everything in cast iron. We’ve never been intimidated by Dutch ovens because we spent too much time around them as children. Continue reading

Whole-Roasted Chicken Cordon Bleu

Whole Roasted Chicken Cordon BleuChicken Cordon Bleu has always been Gordon’s favorite dish. And smoking whole chickens is one of his favorite pastimes. So it only made sense that eventually he would smoke a whole chicken stuffed with ham and cheese.

This roasted chicken cordon bleu came out juicy and flavorful with a hint of smokiness. Really, the hardest part of this recipe is de-boning a whole chicken, since it’s not really something you do every day.  Continue reading