Need a Saturday pick me up to chase away boring weekend food? Come out to the farm visit the cows and pick up the ingredients for a fabulous snack. Let’s make some Mimi’s Ham & Cheese Beer Soft Pretzel Bites. This recipe is straight from Lin Johnson-Carlson founder of Mimi’s Mountain Mixes.
This is one dish I saw disappear quickly. I changed up the ingredients a bit to incorporate what I could find in the NCF store. The change worked great and my oh my what a snack. The Redneck Romano was subbed for swiss cheese . It was the perfect substitute. Redneck Romano has just a bit more flavor than you traditional Swiss. I think I’ll be using it more from here on out. The Lusty Monk was exchanged for Beer Mustard. Once again more flavor. The heat of baking mellowed the spicy punch. Rutabaga was hesitant to try one but was quickly hooked & ate 4. Lasty I used our Deli Ham made with our pigs by Weeping Radish. The thickness of the ham gave a more filling bite.
During the store expansion we decided to check out Ashe Co Cheese. Mostly as Dan wanted to offer a cheaper butter that was still a great quality and well cheese curds. He’s a sucker for the curds.
This recipe comes from the Clark Family here at NCF. Their friend’s southern mother handed it down to them so it it must be good right? Wrong! It is PHENOMENAL!! I can’t remember what was going on at the time but one night the adults were getting ready to go somewhere and the Clark’s were making this for their kids dinner. I snuck a bite. Then when we got back from our adult dinner I snuck the leftovers, yes I know Bad Lucy. Someone should really hit me on the nose more often.
With all of the summer family get together skip the box and the mayo based salad. Head straight for the pasta and cheese that kids and adults will eat up with glee.
Before we get to the recipe of it all lets talk add in’s:
Sub ghost pepper jack cheese for the spicy lovers
Add in some cooked bacon on top the last 5 minutes
Add in some sauteed onions, mushrooms and garlic for some fancy times.
Here you see four gallons of milk, turned into cheese then smoked in the smoke house a few days. It’s been fun trying the things coming out of the smoke house. One lesson I’ve learned already is that when you step in a grab a sample, you really have no idea how smoky it is since you’ve already enveloped yourself in smoke head to toe. Something with no hint of smoke eaten just out of the house will knock your socks off in the kitchen later. We had smoked raisins in our salad and even though they had only smoked a few days, they had a strong smokiness in the salad. Not overpowering but its surprising how well the smoke stays with things.
A few more of the items brought in from my last trip to the smoke house. We still have a month of smoking to go. Anybody need anything smoked?
On Thursday I fired the smoke house as I do each morning. I just love the look of the house venting a thin stream if smoke. It’s like watching a fire, but more productive. This particular morning it was only 7 degrees when I took this video. That may explain why its so short.
Before I fired the smoke house, I took the opportunity to remove some if the items we have in there smoking. Mostly cheeses. This particular cheese is mozzarella cheese that I made from our milk. It went from warm cheese, to a muslin and hung in the smoke house immediately. It developed a very nice rind and took on a good amount of smoke in a couple of days. I shredded some into the scrambled eggs for breakfast before storing the rest away. Good stuff. Actually breakfast was really good all around. Scrambled eggs(our eggs) with ground pork (our pigs) mozzarella cheese (our milk and our cheese) and cantaloupe. Alas, it’s the wrong season for our cantaloupe. Still, pretty local as an average.
I also pulled the other cheeses we had smoked , along with the cashews. The cashews are no good smoked. They took on a petroleum flavor which isn’t from and fuel as we don’t use any. It’s just the way they taste smoked. Maybe if I had baked them first. Everything else has smoked nicely though. The salt is really good. Any ideas on what to smoke next? We have a month of smoking ahead of us.