Notes for January 2018: Frosts and freezes are upon us in many areas, and one field may be unhurt while one a mile a way can be damaged, so keep that in mind as you read the following: Apples are in season now, as are figs, and Fall raspberries are in season now. Tomatoes are going strong if frost hasn't happened in the field Late Apples, like Fuji's should be plentiful now. You can see a complete list of apple varieties, their ripening dates and best uses here. And if you have a left over pumpkin, you can easily turn it into a Thanksgiving pie, pumpkin cheesecake, cookies, muffins and more, see this page!
And of course you can find Christmas tree farms, on our related website.
Children's Consignment Sales occur in both the Spring and Fall See our companion website to find a local community or church kid's consignment sale!
Next year, don't miss an Easter Egg Hunt for your children: See our companion website to find a local Easter Egg hunt!
We also have home canning, preserving, drying and freezing directions. You can access recipes and other resources from the drop down menus at the top of the page or the site search. If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to write me! It is easy to make your own ice cream, even gelato, or low fat or low sugar ice cream - see this page. Also note, there are many copycat website listing U-pick farms now. They have all copied their information form here and usually do not ever update. Since 2002, I've been updating the information every day but Christmas; so if you see anything wrong, please write me!-->
Churros are a Mexican fried dessert, similar to a doughnut or cruller. It's sweet dough, deep fried, then rolled ion a sugar/cinnamon mixture.
Total time: 30 minutes, allow 45 minutes the first time you make them.
Yield: about 18 churros, each about 2 or 3 nches long; of course the depends upon how thick you make them, which is a function of the diameter of the opening in your pastry bag's nozzle. 1 batch makes about enough churros to fill a 1.5 quart container.
Combine the water, butter, sugar and salt in a pot (4 qt or larger) and bring to boil over medium heat.
Turn off heat and dump in the flour all at once. Stir until a ball forms, see the photo at right. Don't over stress this step; you will be mixing it more when you add the eggs.
Dump the dough into a large bowl and allow it to cool for 5 minutes.
In another bowl, beat the eggs and beat in the vanilla.
It should only take a minute or two or low or medium speed.
Gradually mix the eggs mix into the dough, using a heavy spoon or an electric mixer either with a wooden spoon or electric mixer on medium speed until uniform.
Heat 2-3 inches of oil in a large pot (I used a 16 qt pot). Use a candy thermometer to bring it to 350ºF, or until it just starts to crackle and whiffs of oil can be seen.
Set up a piping bag with a 1/2 inch star tip, or if you don't have one a large Ziploc bag with the corner cut off will do (see the photo at right). I cut the top off of a 12 oz plastic soda bottle (aka, in the Deep South, a coke bottle, in the Midwest, a "pop" bottle). Put half the dough in the bag.
At right is a commercial pastry bag; the nozzle has two pieces that screw together to lock it to the disposable plastic bag.
Squeeze out a length of dough about 3 to4 inches long into the hot oil. EXPECT IT TO SPLATTER! so be careful! Cut off the lengths with a knife or scissors as it comes out.
Fry 3 or 4 churros at a time for about 2 minutes on each side; just long enough to get each side golden brown. I turn them with tongs, but you can use a wooden spoon or a slotted spoon.
When they are golden brown on both sides, use tongs to remove from the oil and set them on paper towels to drain and cool a little.
While they are still warm, roll them in the sugar mix or sprinkle it over them.