Butternut Cassserole

030I always remembered the marshmallow covered dish at Thanksgivings, but never ever did I go for the sweet potato casserole. I am just not a sweet potato girl. I’ve tried to be friends, I’ve given them every chance, but sometimes you can’t please them all. So I have updated the sweet potato with something I actually enjoy: butternut squash. Here is what I have created. I will say I find marshmallow to be a pain in the ass, and so I have nixed because I have never enjoyed marshmallow. Sorry marshmallow I am replacing you with just pecans. Get over it.

Butternut Casserole

Special: Kefir with Kathi

Three years I started researching on the Weston A. Price‘s website. That is where I learned about fermented food and flora. Flora is the bacteria in your stomach. A lot goes on in your gut and the state of its health is important to YOU as a whole. The gut is where it starts. A large portion of immunity is there. Having an advantage of good bacteria to ‘bad’ bacteria can be the determining factor in whether you get sick or not. Upon learning this I love to boast on the radical state of my flora, who kick butt and keep sickness at bay. I can’t remember the last time I fell ill. Thanks flora.

Of course there are all kinds of variables that lead to healthy immunity, but there are measures we can take. Part of this is food, like probiotics. I know more have heard this term now with all the commercials, but fermented foods can be probiotic and help build healthy bacteria. Fermented foods used to be the norm, that’s how we preserved food. But fermenting also has its health benefits. Fermenting can often increase the nutritional and vitamin content of food. Fermented foods would be sauerkraut, kimchi, and more. In the case of foods which are common allergens (like gluten and the dairy we’ll explore today), it makes them easier to digest. Many with dairy allergies for instance can stomach yogurt or kefir (or if you want to look further, they actually do better with other variety of animal milk, like goat).

Before visiting my local grass-fed dairy farmer I had never heard of kefir. They told me they sold kefir rather than yogurt. Continue reading “Special: Kefir with Kathi”

Gingersnap Pumpkin Pie

042I have decided to start off my Thanksgiving recipes Dessert first. Let’s begin with the traditional pumpkin pie. A few weeks ago I made gingersnaps and last week I saw a post on pinterest for pumpkin pie with a ginger cookie crust, boom, hello I was meant to make a gingersnap pie. Here is the result, which I have brought to all my most dedicated taste-testers. The overall verdict is that I should make this on Thanksgiving and that the gingersnap is a great pairing. A little dollop of coconut whipped cream on the top and you have the perfect dessert.

Gingersnap Pumpkin Pie


  • 2 cups almond meal
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 4 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ginger
  • 1/3 cup honey


TBT: Bacon-Wrapped Turkey

Today I am going to do a throw back Thursday to last years bacon-wrapped turkey. Growing up, Thanksgiving meant walking across the holler to my grandma and grandpa Dreher’s house (although I have terrific memories of some trips to southern Indiana to spend the holiday with my grandma Linda’s family). Last year was the first time we held Thanksgiving ourselves. It was a fun task for my sister and I to take on together. It was also our first time cooking a whole turkey. Even though it presented its challenges (like our thermometer broke), I think we made the best turkey I have every had. The bacon locked in flavor and it made it juicy and falling off the bone. It was absolute perfection.

Bacon-Wrapped Turkey

Blissgiving: Upcoming Recipes

https://i2.wp.com/media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/95/cf/57/95cf5758f7fb445da39076d75a6b9c0f.jpgI thought I would make this site just about the food, I have a blog after all where I can bare my heart and thoughts, but today I can’t help it. I love FALL! This time of year just seems so magical and special to me. A reason, a freaking Holiday reminding us: be thankful, embrace gratitude. A season of connection. Where we can gather together and celebrate. We can see ALL of our family and ALL of our friends. We can get together over good food and good drinks to reconnect. What has the year brought you? What’s new? What are you working on? Who is special in your life now. I have a BIG family. Both my parents come from larger families, which if you connect the dots, means I have lots of aunts, lots of uncles, and lots of cousins (which continues to grow as the next generation makes it’s way into the world, we will have four new babies alone at this Christmas for the Paulin’s). Sure I have always been the quieter one, who sat back and watched my big, crazy family erupt in personality. Literally erupt. Every family has it’s own brand of crazy, dysfunction. Mine I love for their boldness. They are direct. They have thoughts. They have opinions. But they are fun. They are loyal, and they have your back to the end. Last year it really hit me when my aunt Cheryl admired our ‘availability’. If someone needs something, boom one of us pops in to help. To me life is about connections, we are all in this together. We all struggle, we all try to bring meaning to our lives. This time of year we get together and talk, and listen, and hug, and laugh, and cry, and have fun. I am so, so thankful for me. Continue reading “Blissgiving: Upcoming Recipes”

Pumpkin Caramel Apple Dip

057I messed up (again), go figure. But life is about digging deep and making something better or growing from your mistakes. For my last market I tried to take shortcuts (hello a big blinking sign reading, “Potential Lesson”) on a Pumpkin Chocolate Caramel Bark. It did not set up. Hmm…. it is caramel after all, what if we keep this simple and dip a crisp green apple in there? PERFECTION! My mom is a big granny smith fan and this little added bonus is right up her alley. There was a layering of flavors with the pumpkin and spices that created depth to keep it from being your average caramel, plus tis the season for caramel apple and pumpkins, why not combine them? Duh, here have at it.

Pumpkin Caramel Apple Dip


284Part of what I love about the farmer’s market is the community feel of it. The friendly farmer lovingly tending and raising your food. Bring it to you at the market. I also love Midwestern values. People can just be downright friendly. Last week when my tent was blowing away with the wind, they stepped into to help me. Another instantly gave me her number and address when I expressed an interest in kefir. Call me, come right over when you’re done here, I’ll give you some grains. Not only did I get some gifted grains, but I got an instructional lesson and a taste (boy was it good, more to come on this soon). Then today’s post happened thanks to these giving people. My dear friend Mary brings me some Sorghum and says: I want some gingersnaps. I can do that, I’m on it. Then at the end of the market the Amish couple diagonally across from me came bearing gifts of sorghum. Take it, I just made it this week. Holy cow, I think I need to take this and I need to make some gingersnaps. I confess I was a sugar-cookie, sandie kind of cookie girl, but my family (notably my mom and my grandma Dreher claims them to be their favorites) are avid fans. So for them, for you I have made some gingersnap cookies. Thank you Mary. Thank you to the Market. Thank you, thank you to all.