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Delicious Distractions - Jasper Hill Farm Charcuterie

Despite the fact that I always have a dozen projects going at once, I too find myself looking for the extra distraction here and there in these days of COVID. I play Words With Friends more often than I used to, and my mind is too free to wander on new combinations of ingredients. My poor daughter. I’m constantly asking her, “What would it taste like if I combined this with this, and then did that?” I wanted to give her a break and just have some prepared charcuterie in the fridge so she could nosh when required without having to be the test dummy for my latest dish. Of course, I couldn’t leave well enough alone and felt like making some healthy crackers to go with a little decadence.

Jasper Hill Farm, a small artisanal farm in Vermont, creates some of the most wonderful cheeses and meats, and like most small businesses* now, they’re in trouble. If you regularly order these kinds of products from larger companies, won’t you give them a try? (Bet you never go back...) If it makes any difference, they are used by Chef Tom Colicchio in all his restaurants.

My most recent Jasper Hill Farms box contained Andouille Sausage, Bleu Cheese Sausage (oh, yeah!), a beautiful Harbison cheese, some garlic salami and Bayley Hazen Bleu Cheese. Since the charcuterie is now gone and I actually used the Harbison to make an unbelievable mac and cheese, another box will be coming soon, rest assured.

Flax Crackers

INGREDIENTS

1 cup Flaxseed Meal

2 teaspoons Garlic Powder

2 teaspoons Onion Powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon “Everything Bagel” seasoning or your spice of choice

½ cup Water

Kosher or flaked salt, optional

METHOD

In a mixing bowl, mix everything except for the kosher/flaked salt.

Cover and set the dough aside for 10 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400.

Once dough is ready, roll it out between 2 pieces of parchment paper as thin as you like. (Cooking times will vary according to thickness).

Gently pull parchment paper off the top.

Place the rolled dough with parchment paper onto a baking sheet and use a pizza cutter to cut into cracker sized pieces.

Sprinkle some flaked or kosher salt on the top if you wish.

Bake chips for 10-15 minutes (longer if thicker).

Once chips are baked, turn off the oven, remove and break the crackers. Spread the crackers on the baking tray and return to the oven for another 10 minutes with the oven door slightly opened. (this is to dry it out so it gets crispy)

Allow crackers to cool completely before storing.

I know that sweeter wines are recommended for deep blue cheese, but I like an Amarone. You rarely have just one cheese or meat on a charcuterie board and I think the right Amarone goes with more. And unless it’s some serious Eisweine, I can only take a few sips of sweet dessert-type wines. And where’s the fun in that?!

Do reach out to Jasper Hill Farm on Facebook or their website: JasperHillFarm.com. Right now, you get a half pound of this amazing Bayley Hazen Bleu in each gift box.

Tell them Tom sent you.

*Our small businesses are hurting too. Please consider going as small as you can during these tough times. Walmart will survive. Domino’s will survive. Amazon will survive. Impossible to say whether or not restaurants and small businesses will.


Flax Crackers

INGREDIENTS

1 cup Flaxseed Meal

2 teaspoons Garlic Powder

2 teaspoons Onion Powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon “Everything Bagel” seasoning or your spice of choice

½ cup Water

Kosher or flaked salt, optional

METHOD

In a mixing bowl, mix everything except for the kosher/flaked salt.

Cover and set the dough aside for 10 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400.

Once dough is ready, roll it out between 2 pieces of parchment paper as thin as you like. (Cooking times will vary according to thickness).

Gently pull parchment paper off the top.

Place the rolled dough with parchment paper onto a baking sheet and use a pizza cutter to cut into cracker sized pieces.

Sprinkle some flaked or kosher salt on the top if you wish.

Bake chips for 10-15 minutes (longer if thicker).

Once chips are baked, turn off the oven, remove and break the crackers. Spread the crackers on the baking tray and return to the oven for another 10 minutes with the oven door slightly opened. (this is to dry it out so it gets crispy)

Allow crackers to cool completely before storing.

I know that sweeter wines are recommended for deep blue cheese, but I like an Amarone. You rarely have just one cheese or meat on a charcuterie board and I think the right Amarone goes with more. And unless it’s some serious Eisweine, I can only take a few sips of sweet dessert-type wines. And where’s the fun in that?!

Do reach out to Jasper Hill Farm on Facebook or their website: JasperHillFarm.com. Right now, you get a half pound of this amazing Bayley Hazen Bleu in each gift box.

Tell them Tom sent you.

*Our small businesses are hurting too. Please consider going as small as you can during these tough times. Walmart will survive. Domino’s will survive. Amazon will survive. Impossible to say whether or not restaurants and small businesses will.

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