Archive for the ‘Fruits’ Category

This Blueberry Pie cooking video will help you show off your skills in the kitchen with my tricks to making the perfect pie crust and blueberry filling.  This is a great recipe for the fall when using all those local blueberries you frozen to savor the season.


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Cantaloupe Refresher Video

A great refresher drink from the Laclede County Farmers Market in Lebanon, Mo.

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Homemade Apple Butter

I remember watching my grandmother make homemade apple butter in her farm kitchen.  It would take all day, but it was well worth the work!  She used her Crock Pot to slow cook the mixture, which she said made the taste even better.

She and I would make a trip to a market or a local orchard to pick up our apples and pay a visit to a couple of her lady friends, which she would always have extra apples for.

Local apples will start showing up at the farmers markets and roadside stands soon…so be ready!  This is a perfect recipes for those of you wanting to try your hands at making your own apple butter this season.

Local Apple Butter
5 1/2 pounds of local apples – peeled, cored and finely chopped
4 cups white sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt

In a slow cooker place apples.  In a bowl mix the sugar, cinnamon, cloves and salt. Pour the mixture over the apples in the slow cooker and mix well. Cover and cook the mixture on high for 1 hour.  Then, reduce the heat to low and cook for 10 hours, stirring about every 2 hours.  Uncover the slow cooker and continue to cook for one more hour and whisk the mixture well.

Spoon mixture into canning jars or freeze.  Enjoy all season long!

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Fresh slices of locally grown watermelon

I’ve got another special treat for everyone today – my Melon Salad with Thai Basil.

This recipe I have prepared at a couple of cooking demonstrations in the last couple of years and it’s always a favorite by consumers.  It highlights two products found in season – jalapeno peppers and melon. Be sure and use a melon baller to bring a touch of class to the salad.

I like to serve this dish on a large platter that I top with arugula- makes the melon look very inviting and hard to resist.

Markets are still going strong with local products- get out this week and visit a market near you.

Melon Salad with Thai Basil
1 large shallot, finely diced
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup cilantro
Juice and zest of 2 limes
1/3 cup Thai basil leaves, if you can’t find this specific basil you could use any variety
¼ cup mint leaves
1 jalapeno chile, finely diced
1 teaspoon minced ginger
1 small garlic clove, minced
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 ½ to 2 pounds melon (honeydew, watermelon, cantaloupe), chilled
1 bunch arugula

Put shallot in bowl with lime juice, zest and ¼ teaspoon salt. Chop the herbs and add them to bowl along with the chile, ginger, garlic and oil. Stir and taste for salt.

Halve the melon, remove the seeds and cut into wedges. Slice off the skins, then cut the melon diagonally into bite sizes pieces or into very small cubes, as you prefer.

Pour the dressing over the melon and toss well. Season with pepper. Arrange the greens on small plates and spoon the melon into the center. If the melons are extra sweet, add as extra lime wedge to each plate. Garnish with the purple tipped Thai basil leaves.

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The Market Lady’s Pound Cake with a Fresh Berry Sauce is perfect with any local berries.  Watch as Lane prepared a homemade pound cake and berry sauce at the Mtn. Grove Farmers Market.  Below find the video and recipe for this crowd pleaser recipe!

Pound Cake with a Fresh Fruit Sauce
Need one 9-by-5-inch loaf of pound cake, already baked and cooled

Fresh Fruit Sauce
1 1/2 cups (Strawberries, Blueberries, Raspberries  or Blackberries)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
2 lemons, zested and juiced
¼ tsp. vanilla

Add all ingredients and cook over medium-high heat until reduced and thickened. Stores for up to a week in your refrigerator or for a month in your freezer

Ideas for sauce: Take a slice of cheesecake or a rich chocolate torte and drizzle over a little strawberry sauce, and you will be amazed at how much better it looks and tastes.

Or, for an easy weeknight dessert that your kids will love, just pour it over a bowl of ice cream or make a fruit milkshake.

One of my family’s favorite parts of the summer is to go berry picking with our son.  We pick enough berries to last us through the year and simply freeze the berries in a freezer bag.  If you are looking for a fun and in-expensive family outing this summer- find a local you-pick, load the kids up in the car and head out to the country for fun on the farm.

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Try this Watermelon and Cucumber Salad from The Market Lady, plus get some tips on choosing the right melon.

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I’ve had this recipe in my inbox for awhile, waiting for the perfect moment to give it a whirl.

That day presented itself yesterday.  While cooking dinner for my family last night I wrote down the simple ingredients and mixed my own little evening refresher – a Watermelon and Cucumber cocktail.

You can find the original recipe on TheKitchen.com.  If you want to make this a non-alcoholic drink, just switch out the alcohol for some club soda or even 7-Up.  But, below was my variation.

Watermelon-Cucumber Refresher
3 parts tequila
1 part triple sec
1 part (1/2 ounce) watermelon-cucumber-mint juice*
1 part (1/2 ounce) fresh lime juice

Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a watermelon and/or cucumber slice and/or a sprig of mint.

*Watermelon-Cucumber-Mint Juice
yields one cup

2 parts (I used 2 cups) diced, seeded watermelon flesh
1 part (1 cup) peeled, seeded cucumber
2 sprigs mint (I used 7 leaves)
A couple of pieces of diced jalapenos

Whir all ingredients together in a blender. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer. Discard pulp.

Another great way to enjoy in the freshness that the farmers market offers!  So, get out today and shop local.




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