Five Fab for Friday: Berries & Blooms


1. It may early to be dreaming of tomato pie, but strawberries are making their way to your local farmers’ markets. These are from Skinny Lane Farm. Sorry to say, but these were the last pint available at Elgin Local Goods today…but I bet Mike and Bekki bring some more by for the weekend.


2. Also available at Elgin Local Goods is this amazing pâté de Campagne from Belle Vie Farm & Kitchen. You can read about this Elgin farm in the current ssue of Edible Austin.


3. The return of Happy Valley. Season 2 is now available on Netflix. The other night at Stitch & Hoot we were talking about being distracted while watching movies by the furniture, knitwear and decor. I love this show, but would you look at this kitchen?! I’m sure to most this looks a fright, but I love it… the bold colors, the (in progress) hand painted cabinets, the yellow glass knobs, and the mismatched coffee cups.

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4. I know…more granny squares. But bunting!

5. This photo essay of spring blooms in Big Bend in the March Issue of Texas Monthly.



It’s only been a couple days since we turned off the air conditioning and already I’m consumed with thoughts of apple desserts, printing christmas cards and planning for Thanksgiving.

I found this recipe for Apple Fritter Cake, think about that for a minute…apple. fritter.cake. I’m curious about this recipe, I mean everyone knows the best part of an apple fritter is the crunchy fried peaks and glaze filled valleys. I wonder if being baked rather than fried will make me sad. Only one way to find out, and lord knows I have more than a few potlucks in the near future.

Speaking of potlucks…I have quite a few pieces of Potluck Tableware available at The Owl thru the Holiday Season. For those of you not planning a visit to Elgin in the near future… I will have some available by this weekend when I update my Etsy shop. As always, special orders are welcome.

I’ve recently added a handful of recipes to this blog. They are mostly recipes for potlucks and special occasions that I felt paired nicely with my Potluck Tableware… everything from smoky pimento cheese to my absolute favorite cornbread dressing. I’ll be adding more recipes as the seasons go round and round.

I have plans for a pile of vintage (and not so vintage) tablecloths, but not until I am finished with printing holiday cards. I’ve been printing, folding and packaging and will be selling those shortly.

The Punishment Sock & a Pie Recipe

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Wild Blueberry Almond Crumble Pie


3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (or more) sugar

1/4 cup cornstarch

7 cups fresh wild or regular blueberries (32 ounces) or 32 ounces frozen wild or regular blueberries (no need to thaw)

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice


2/3 cup unbleached all purpose flour

4 ounces marzipan or almond paste, broken into 1/3-inch pieces (about 3/4 cup loosely packed)

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1/2 teaspoon salt

Whipped cream or ice cream

Roll out pie crust disk on floured surface to 12-inch round. Transfer to 9-inch-diameter glass pie dish. Turn crust edges under and crimp decoratively, forming crust edge 1/4 inch above sides of pie dish. Refrigerate while preparing filling and topping.

For filling:

Whisk 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar and cornstarch in heavy large saucepan to blend. Stir in blueberries and lemon juice. Cook over medium heat until mixture bubbles and thickens, frequently stirring gently, about 13 minutes. Chill filling until cool, about 1 hour. If more sweetness is desired, stir in sugar by tablespoonfuls.

For topping:

Combine first 4 ingredients in processor; blend until mixture begins to clump together. Transfer to bowl; chill 30 minutes. Position rack in bottom third of oven and preheat to 400°F. Spread blueberry filling evenly in unbaked crust. Sprinkle topping evenly over. Place pie on rimmed baking sheet and bake until crust and topping are golden and filling bubbles thickly, about 50 minutes. Transfer pie to rack and cool completely. DO AHEAD Can be made 8 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.

Serve pie with whipped cream or ice cream.

The reality
Just use your favorite homemade or store bought crust, I say this only because the crust is not the star of this pie. I used frozen wild blueberries which were so yummy and I ate them by the frozen handful. I bought four 10 ounce bags because I was afraid I’d be short. I did not adjust cornstarch or anything and consistency was great. If my pie pan had been deeper all the filling would have fit nicely, but I had about a cup left over.

Okay, now the real dilemma. I live in a small farming community of about 8,000. Marzipan is NOT at the top of everyone’s shopping list therefore not available at my local HEB. So . . . I tossed some almonds, alot of almond extract and some white and brown sugar to the topping mixture. May have been less sweet but was still great. I gotta tell you the salt in the topping is key. You definitely know it’s there (in agood way) and it rounds out the topping nicely.

This being Texas, pie must be topped with Bluebell Homemade Vanilla How can you not love a company who’s trucks read, “We eat all we can, and we sell the rest“?

FYI . . . I am about 6 rows away from completing the toe on the The Punishment Sock. I know now that if I didn’t knit them simulataneously  (and use spell check for that matter) simultaneously I would NEVER, oh and I do mean NEVER, knit a second sock in my life. Don’t care how cold my other foot is. Second Sock Syndrome is too nancy a diagnosis… I propose a motion to call the second sock simply the The Punishment Sock.