As if we need another reason to enjoy a few scoops, July is National Ice Cream Month! Best. Month. Ever! To celebrate, we made a simple vanilla ice cream swirled with our Aronia-Haskap Fruit Spread. Really, you could use any of our fruit spreads and this recipe would turn out to be plain awesome…but, this is what we had on hand! So, enjoy our homemade vanilla berry swirl ice cream recipe and let us know what kind of fruit spread you end up using.
½ jar Mt. Hope Farms’ Fruit Spread (any variety will do, but we suggest Aronia-Haskap or Raspberry-Marionberry)
Follow your ice cream maker’s directions, but remember to put the freezer bowl in your freezer the night before, to make sure it’s plenty frozen enough. When this recipe hasn’t turned out, it’s a result of us not having things cold enough (and that’s a huge bummer!)
Using a mixer on low speed, combine the sugar and half & half until the sugar is fully dissolved. Chill in the fridge for an hour.
Gently stir the whipping cream and vanilla bean paste into the half & half mixture and transfer into the ice cream maker freezer bowl.
Turn the ice cream maker on and let mix until slightly thickened (for us, it was about 18 minutes). While the machine is churning, and you’re waiting for the ice cream to thicken, spoon half a jar of fruit spread into a bowl and stir to loosen the consistency. Set aside at room temperature.
When the ice cream mixture has started to slightly thicken and the machine is churning, slowly add the fruit spread, one Tablespoon at a time to avoid clumping. Allow the machine to churn until the 25 minute mark. This will help the fruit spread swirl throughout the ice cream.
Remove the slightly thickened ice cream from the freezer bowl and place in a separate container. Freeze immediately (we had to leave ours in the freezer overnight to fully harden and get to the right consistency).
Serve with remaining fruit spread on top and enjoy!
Note: we used a Cuisinart 2 quart ice cream maker, which can be found here.
Read through and see our favorite Father’s Day Gift Ideas that are Under $15! We made up a list of our favorite gifts for Mother’s Day…so we couldn’t leave dads out! Most are from small businesses like ours and many are handmade. Links to order are in the headings, so click and celebrate a dad in your life!
Garage Coffee was created with the idea that mind blowing and unique coffee didn’t have to be the sole property of upscale and elite coffee shops. We roast using a little hard work and get great coffee from responsibly sourced green coffee beans from many countries around the world. Why the name? On a whim, a friend and I taught ourselves to roast in the garage in-between a few old motorcycles and it took off from there. Soon after, we decided to call ourselves Garage Coffee. Our best selling coffee is the Sledgehammer, a dark roasted coffee from Jaltenango, Chiapas Mexico. It has that classic coffee profile without bitter or burnt tastes and is grown and processed by indigenous farmers paid a fair price for their hard work. Cost: $12
For the dad who loves exploring and hiking. This is a survival tool that is disguised as a bracelet! The paracord bracelet is the base for a thermometer, whistle, flint rod, scrapper, paracord and buckle. It’s weatherproof and waterproof, making it ideal for camping, fishing and biking. Cost: $8.99, Amazon.com
Inspired by backyard BBQ gatherings with friends and family, we’ve captured the ultimate combination of culture, atmosphere, mouth-watering food, and brought it to the masses. Our award winning BBQ was far too tasty to keep all to ourselves, so the Oregon Barbecue Company is bringing the finger lickin’ goodness to the great people of the Pacific Northwest! Oregon Gold is a tangy Carolina style mustard base sauce that compliments chicken, pulled pork and sausage gracefully, without over powering the flavor of the meats. This 3-Generation recipe has been honorably passed down to us, so that we can pass on its unforgettable flavor to the world. Cost: $8/12 oz bottle
Located in the Pacific Northwest, 7DogForge has been creating fine works of art for more than 15 years. We have created so many custom forged pieces that include fireplace tools, wine racks, cabinet hardware, cutlery…and much more! For the wood art enthusiast we also create cutting boards and furniture. We have cutting boards, cheese boards, key-chains and bottle openers all at $15 each. However, dads really like the ornate bottle openers forged from mild steel! Cost: $15/each
Just add milk and you have cheese in under an hour! Seriously. So fun! No aging required and this kit makes three batches. Use the finished product (which doesn’t melt like most cheeses) as a salad topper, fried in a sandwich or mixed into pasta. Cost: $14.00
Organic, all natural Stubble Patch Beard Balm works as a leave in beard conditioner that will also moisturize the skin. It leaves his beard soft and easily stylable. Use Stubble Patch Beard Balm to contain that unruly beard, catch stray hairs, help dry and/or damaged hair or split ends. Also helps to reduce flaking and dandruff. Made without fragrances or synthetic materials and has a light cedar scent. Cost: $9/1 oz tin
Spoonfudge! is a dreamy, creamy, decadent fudge in a jar. Rich and smooth gourmet fudge is poured into jars and eaten directly from the jar with the attached spoon. It’s also great stirred into coffee or hot milk, warmed and drizzled over your favorite ice cream or pastries…the possibilities are endless! All Spoonfudge! flavors are trans-fat free. Most flavors are also gluten free! Cost: $12.95/two, 5 oz jar set
Know someone who loves to drink kombucha and wants to start making their own? This book is perfect for them! It takes them through the entire process, making it less intimidating! Kombucha can be had by itself or used as a mixer in cocktails, plus it has wonderful health benefits. Recipes are fun and unique- like the Ginger-Peach Black Tea, and Blueberry Smoothie. Cost: $13.31 (Amazon)
At just $10, this hand painted and distressed little sign is perfect for the angler! If you are thinking of Father’s Day, it would be the perfect addition to a gift basket filled with all of his favorite lures and fishing gear! Add hooks for just $3 and make it a key hanger! Size is 5.5″x11″ Cost: $10.00, order through Facebook page
We use our farm grown apples, brown sugar and organic sugar, a splash of local rum and Oregon sea salt to create this rich fruit spread. The taste of fresh apples and a hint of caramel make this one of our personal favorites. It’s perfect for a charcuterie board or as a complement to grilled pork chops. Favorite Pairings: You’ll want to eat this right out of the jar! Pair with aged cheddar on a cheese platter, on a turkey sandwich, on ice cream or as a treat in your oatmeal. Our fruit spreads are made with our farm grown and locally sourced ingredients. These ingredients include organic cane sugar, organic lemon juice and spices from a local Portland shop. Nothing artificial is ever added- our products are all natural, vegan and contain a fraction of the sugar added to most conventional preserves. Cost: $9.95 (includes shipping)/ 10 oz jar
As a farm growing this specialty crop, we get the question, “what are haskap berries?” a lot, so we thought we’d do a quick post! A haskap is a berry that is dark blue in color and resembles an elongated blueberry. When ripe, the inside of the berry is a deep purplish red color.
The skin is much like a blueberry and the inside has a texture similar to a kiwi. They are also called Honeyberries, Blue Honeysuckles, Edible Honeysuckles, Canadian Honey Berry, Haskap and Sweet Berry in certain regions and areas. The haskap is a circumpolar species native to northern boreal forests in Asia, Europe, and North America. The plants themselves look much like a blueberry plant and some varieties grow up to 6 feet tall, though most are between 4 and 5 feet and are quite hardy when planted in the right environment.
What do the berries taste like?
To us, the haskap berry tastes like a cross between raspberries, blueberry and rhubarb. It’s a really tart berry when eaten freshly picked. Our family eats them straight out of the field, but we use the majority of them for our fruit spreads, which sweetens them up a bit.
What are the health benefits?
In Japan, haskap is called ‘the fruit of longevity.’ Haskaps are considered a superberry because they are extremely rich in nutrients and antioxidants that help prevent multiple diseases and cancers. When added to a healthy diet and lifestyle, haskap is believed to help prevent heart disease, cancers, cardiovascular diseases,diabetes, osteoporosis and neurodegenerative diseases (according to leading alternative health expert, Bryce Wylde).
What are haskap used for?
We use our berries in our fruit spreads (low sugar jam), smoothies, mixed in yogurt, ice cream or fresh. In Canada, where haskap is more widely grown, the berry is also used in wines, syrups, salad dressings, for dried smoothie powders and even beauty products. They are amazingly versatile and we can’t wait to have a larger crop to start experimenting with! In 2018, we were honored to win a Good Food Award for our Aronia-Haskap Fruit Spread and we often sell out of it within a day of listing on our online shop!
About the haskap on our farm
We are one of the first growers of haskap berries in the Pacific Northwest. Our plants are from both a specialty breeder in Oregon and from Saskatchewan, Canada. We have a several varieties because the flowers cannot pollinate otherwise. At least two varieties of haskap, planted in close range, are necessary to get adequate pollination. Our
varieties have been selected as best fits for our soil type, climate and yield potential. We are picky in choosing which types to plant on our farm because we want to make sure we get the most berries possible…and that has taken a lot of trial and error over the last few years. As farmers, we choose crops which can help improve our land and that will respond well to our biological farming methods (we’ll have to explain more about these methods in another blog down the road..)
Mason Bees and pollinators
Another practice that we have implemented to be sure that our haskaps grow and pollinate well in the early spring is that we work to make sure Mason Bees make the farm home. These bees are some of the earliest pollinators in our area. We provide houses for them (see the picture below)
and make sure they are placed near our early blooming crops. We also do everything we can to provide food and a home for all pollinators, bumblebees, honeybees, etc. We certainly aren’t going to turn away any pollinators willing to help us out on the farm.
Soil, sun and harvesting
Our farm has been the perfect growing environment for haskap plants because they love growing where water is readily available and the soil is well drained. They also enjoy full to partial sun. The berries usually ripen in late May (even earlier than most strawberries in Oregon). We hand harvest our crop but hope, someday, to have a more efficient system in place. For now, we pick them berry by berry and hand sort to get the best fruit for our products and fresh eating.
Want to follow along with our farming adventures and learn more?
Want to know more about haskap? Be sure to follow us on Instagram and Facebook– we post about our products, our fruits and how we farm and care for our land and crops. You can also become part of our farm family and get updates, recipes and the inside scoop from Mike and Laura by jumping on our email list!
We have put together a list of our favorite Mother’s Day gift ideas that are under $15! The best part? Almost all of these gifts are from small makers, crafters and farms like ours. So, take a look and order away (links are in the headings)!
One Fork Farm produces decadent, old-fashioned caramels made with honey, cream, and butter from Oregon’s Willamette Valley, sea salt from the Oregon Coast, and locally-crafted spirits, teas, and chocolate. They never include corn-syrup or anything artificial and every piece is cut, wrapped, and packaged by hand at their McMinnville kitchen by people who truly care about producing the finest quality Oregon caramels possible. The Wildflower Honey caramel is the one that started it all! Made with the finest local ingredients including Willamette Valley wildflower honey and sea salt harvested from the Oregon Coast, these rich decadent caramels abound with Northwest honey flavor. Cost: $10/4 oz
These vintage-inspired Travel Tin Soy Candles are made with all-natural soy wax, cotton wicks, quality fragrance oils, and recyclable packaging. They’re hand-poured and hand-labeled in small batches at Aggie’s little Bungalow Studio in NE Oregon. Aggie’s loves adding unexpected twists to their product line now and then, and this is one of them! Tart notes of rhubarb are blended with a sweet burst of fresh fig for a hearty, sophisticated and fruity scent. Cost: $9.95/4 oz travel tin + free shipping on orders of $15 or more until May 15th, 2018!
This Oregon family farm grows, harvests, processes and packages all of their hazelnuts. The business is a partnership between a mom and 2 daughters. They started packaging their hazelnuts about 3 years ago on a very small scale. In 2017, they decided to try and expand their business which included new packaging, an updated website, online sales, and marketing to venues all over Oregon. Their business vision has blossomed into distributing to many more places in Oregon as well as venues in 5 other states! King Fresh is currently in the process of building a new facility to make processing much more efficient. These packages of Hazelnuts make a tasty snack and unique addition to a cheese platter. Cost: $13.50/16 oz package
Such a fun gift for anyone who wants to keep chickens in their backyard! ‘The Chicken Chick’s Guide to Backyard Chickens’ takes enthusiasts through all aspects of small-flock ownership. You’ll find all the info you need on feeding, housing, flock health, and more. Internationally known as The Chicken Chick, Kathy Shea Mormino brings an informative style and fresh perspective on raising backyard chickens to millions of fans around the world. An attorney by profession, Kathy is the founder and one-woman creative force behind her wildly popular and award-winning Facebook page and blog, The-Chicken-Chick.com. Cost: $13.38 through Amazon Prime, $16.50 for signed copy at The-Chicken-Chick.com
Savory Spice Shop in Portland (Sellwood), Oregon is locally owned and operated. Our farm uses their spices in our fruit spreads because of their quality and freshness. For this mix, they started with some of their most popular seasonings and married new flavors into them to create their new SPICE ‘n EASY recipe named ‘Tikka Taco.’ Tikka Massala is one of our best-selling curries and taco seasoning is one of our top-selling products overall. Customers love them both, so they tweaked and tested and tweaked some more to find the ideal balance to create a new family-friendly flavor that is delivered with an easy-to-make recipe. We love it here and think it’s an essential mix for any home cook or foodie! Cost: $4.75/1.75 oz
Swan Island Dahlias is a family owned and operated farm that has been in Canby, Oregon for over 90 years. They pride themselves in selling top quality, beautiful dahlias for everyone to enjoy. Swan Island Dahlias grows almost 40 acres of dahlias and opens their breath-taking fields for visitors August and September. The ‘BLISS’ Dahlia was introduced in 1989. It is a 4″ delicate blend of rose mauve with soft yellow toward the center. Give your mom something that blooms every year and adds beauty to her yard! Cost: $10.95
Hand blended with the best of Oregon’s harvest season, including Mt. Hope Farm’s Aronia Berries! St. Fiacre’s Farm products are a reflection of their belief that they are stewards of the land and that food is our best medicine. Each tea has been carefully crafted to not only look beautiful but taste great and help support our local economy and farms. Every cup not only helps support their family but other local families as well. These teas are truly crafted and sipped with a cause in mind. Featuring four local Oregon farms: Apples from Queeners Farm, Aronia Berries from Mt. Hope Farms, Cornflowers from Floating Petals (found on Etsy!) and Blackberry Leaves from their own farm. These wonderful fruits of the harvest are paired with some flavorful spices to bring you a tart but sweet apple berry tea. Cost: $11/2.5 oz
Each of these is one of a kind and handmade. All fashioned from distressed, upcycled leather with a paisley embossment. Earring hooks are nickel free. Proceeds create hope for orphaned & at-risk children in Swaziland, Africa. Every pair of earrings helps pay elementary tuition fees for a child who otherwise wouldn’t be able to go to school. Cost: $14.99
Tropical fruits and apricots on the nose. Super soft on the palate. Yummy juicy ripe pears and peaches bring out the summer time of this wine. This is a true semi-sweet wine and is great on a hot day. Pair with a simple white sharp cheddar or a spicy meal! Cost: $14
Fill these buckets with anything your mom loves- handmade treats, bath and body gifts, gardening supplies…or any of the gifts on this list! These are hand-painted by Karen and are great for spring time giving. Each bucket measures 11×4 inches and is one of a kind. You may choose either roses and rosebuds, violets or pink and white flowers to embellish your bucket. Cost: $15 (shipping included)
This small company is located in La Grande, Oregon and is owned by Jessica Sutten. Jess started her shop in hopes to share her creativity and make items that people would love to have in their homes. She has a big, goofy golden retriever named Penny and two small boys at home, thus her shop name! This is the perfect cup for your mom’s morning cup of coffee. Cost: $12.00
Local, Oregon strawberries and Organic lavender are simmered together in this complex spread. As the jar sits in your pantry (but probably not for long) the lavender flavor becomes stronger and more noticeable. Favorite Pairings; spooned over ice cream, spread onto freshly made waffles, as a cupcake filling, and paired with brie and your favorite wine! Our fruit spreads are made with our farm grown and locally sourced ingredients. These ingredients include organic cane sugar, organic lemon juice and spices from a Savory Spice Shop in Portland. Nothing artificial is ever added- our products are all natural, vegan and contain a fraction of the sugar added to most conventional preserves. Grab a jar and taste a little bit of Oregon’s springtime. Cost: $9.95 (includes shipping)
As farmers, we want our practices to be sustainable and good for the wildlife around us. One way we do that is to attract birds of prey- in this case, owls! Owls are naturally hard workers and we do as much as possible to help them make the farm their home. We like to promote natural, sustainable predator control as part of our farming practices. Owls ask for very little and provide us with impressive results. They work tirelessly and don’t require much supervision. They feed on rodents that damage our crops and with just a little help we can both work together to benefit the farm. So, watch along as we set up nest boxes for these fantastic workers and, if you’d like to learn more about our farm and products, sign up for our email list!
Grab our Autumn Apple Fruit Spread and your favorite bbq sauce and cook up these meatballs! They make a tasty appetizer or even a main dish when served over rice. Try them in your crockpot! If you would like to see them prepared on video, go to our YouTube Channel here.
32 oz prepared frozen meatballs (you can also make your own if you have a preferred recipe)
It’s still winter, so that means it’s still hot cocoa season! And, what goes better with cocoa than homemade marshmallows with our Raspberry Marionberry Fruit Spread? Yeah, pretty much nothing 🙂
The base recipe for these marshmallows is right from Alton Brown. All we did was omit the vanilla and add in our fruit spread. The berry flavor is pretty light, but make sure not to go to heavy on the fruit spread as it can greatly change the texture of the marshmallows. We also highly recommended that you use a stand mixer for this recipe as it whips for a long time. Enjoy and let us know how they turn out!
Homemade Marshmallows with Raspberry Marionberry Fruit Spread
Gather all ingredients. Place water in your freezer for about 30 minutes to make sure it is well chilled.
Place the gelatin into the bowl of a stand mixer along with 1/2 cup of the water. Make sure the whisk attachment is ready to go.
Combine the sugar and cornstarch in a bowl. Spray a 9″ x 13″ baking pan and spatula with nonstick cooking spray and completely coat with the sugar and cornstarch mixture. Set aside pan and the rest of the cornstarch mixture for later.
In a saucepan, combine the other 1/2 cup of water, granulated sugar, corn syrup and salt. Place over medium high heat, cover and allow to cook for 4 minutes, with NO stirring or moving of the pan, so the sugar starts to dissolve. Uncover, clip a candy thermometer onto the side of the pan and continue to cook until the mixture reaches 240 degrees F (about 8 minutes). Again, NO stirring or movement of the pan during this time. Remove the mixture from heat immediately and get ready to add it to the mixer.
Turn the mixer on low speed and slowly pour the sugar syrup down the side of the bowl into the gelatin mixture to avoid any splashing. Once you have added all of the syrup, increase the speed to high. This is the fun part- you begin to see the marshmallow fluff forming! Continue to whip until the mixture becomes very thick and is lukewarm, approximately 17 minutes. Add the fruit spread during the last minute of whipping.
When the mixture is done whipping, pour into the prepared baking pan, making sure the mixture is spread evenly with your spatula. Lightly coat/dust the top of the marshmallows with the cornstarch mixture you mixed up at the beginning of the recipe.
Next, allow the marshmallows to sit for at least 8 hours and up to overnight. The original recipe calls for at least 4 hours, but we have found that letting them sit longer creates a better texture and firmer set.
Once the marshmallows have firmed up, it’s time to get them out of the pan and cut them! Heavily dust a large cutting board or pastry mat with the remaining cornstarch mixture. Using a butter knife sprayed with nonstick cooking spray, go around the edge of the baking pan, loosening the marshmallows. Turn the pan over onto the cutting board, fully removing the marshmallows. Next, coat a pizza cutter with nonstick cooking spray (this is a MUST…trust us) and begin cutting the marshmallows into strips and then squares. Roll each square in the cornstarch mix to coat.
Enjoy right away or store in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.
For our celebration of the new year, we are going to make a rich, creamy hot chocolate in our crockpot. The best part? We’ll top it with fresh, homemade whipped cream mixed with our Spiced Marionberry Fruit Spread! This takes very little effort and it’s something that everyone enjoys. You can even do a full topping bar with sprinkles, whipped cream, marshmallows, crushed peppermint…anything you can think of!
Hot Chocolate in the Crockpot
3 cups milk (we used 2%)
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 can (about 7 oz) sweetened condensed milk
6 oz milk chocolate chips
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Add all ingredients, cover, and set to low for 3 hours, stirring every 10-15 minutes. Once all of the chocolate has melted, and the ingredients are combined, turn the crockpot down to the warm setting. This recipe serves about 3 to 4 people.
Whipped Cream made with Mt. Hope Farms’ Fruit Spread
Chill metal mixing bowl and whisk attachment in the freezer for about 10 minutes. Combine the cream and sugar in the chilled mixing bowl. Whisk until the mixture holds a stiff peak. Add the fruit spread and whisk into the whipped cream until it is completely combined. If you wish to, you can fold additional fruit spread (to your taste) into the whipped cream once it has completed mixing. Do this a small amount at a time to make sure the consistency of the cream mixture doesn’t change.
To celebrate the Christmas Season, we are having a gift bundle giveaway!
We love to encourage people to shop small and support local businesses. It is important to celebrate other individuals and families who make quality products, who care about their ingredients, who want to be involved in their communities and who treat customers with integrity. So, we have put together a small food business gift bundle with items from a couple of fellow food makers that we know!
Here is what the gift bundle will include:
Shortbread Mix from Granny Fi’s that you can make at home! We know Fiona and LOVE her shortbread (and her). She is originally from Scotland and makes her product from a 6th generation family recipe. Yummmm!
Oregon Harvest Berry Blend Tea from St. Fiacre’s Farm that is made with our own, organically grown, Aronia berries! We might be biased, but this is one of our favorite teas EVER. This farm family grows as many of the ingredients as they can and source locally for what they can’t- and always organically if possible.
Our Good Food Award Winner Gift Box, which contains our Raspberry Marionberry and Spiced Marionberry Fruit Spreads. These spreads are made with low amounts of certified Organic sugar and lemon juice and organically grown (not certified) Oregon berries. Simple ingredients and truly farm to jar!
How to enter:
Enter here! Please share with your friends and encourage them to like our Facebook page to learn more about our farm and family. Merry Christmas- we can’t wait to see who wins!