Leaf Peepers Leave Me Breathless

This weekend was a whirlwind of activity, from the Great Falls Harvest, homecoming weekend, and a gorgeous autumn worth sightseeing.  Traffic was a buzz at Element Brewing Company, with Dave Broule Session filling the hall with folky Irish music as people ordered our signature Smokey quesdailla time and again.  The Fall quesadilla is composed of apple butter, Jarlsberg cheese, Pine Hill Honeycrisp apples, and some Diemand Farm turkey bacon.  A side of Gala apple salsa added a fresh touch of the harvest to every bite.

 

The cheese sampler is a popular option, plating a selection of our house made delectables with a journey of cheeses.  This particular board was a compliment of the Braeburn apple butter, toasted almonds, pickled Smiarowski Farms beans, grapes, Cabot cheddar, double creme brie, English smoked cheddar, German Kase, and Norweigan brown Brunost.  It also had a slice of my first ever cranberry eggnog loaf made with King Arthur Sir Galahad wheat bread flour.  That loaf was a challenge to assemble but smelled deeply of savory cinnamon and nutmeg, stuffed with fresh tart cranberries.  A personal sized loaf of our house bread made with Four Star Farm spelt flour helps soak up every savory morsel.

 

To fill a larger appetite a Diemand Chicken was roasted and transformed into a Roasted Garlic and Basil chicken salad, which was placed on a bed of caramel apples, sprinkled with chopped sun dried tomatoes, and completed with crumbled Montcherve goat cheese before being sandwiched between two slices of house made red winter wheat bread. This flavor-filled twist on a classic was received warmly served with a pile of Cape Cod chips and house pickles.  Also, a Tempeh Reuben was added to the specials sheet using house Rye bread, sauerkraut, Russian dressing with fresh grated horseradish and Jarlsberg cheese.  The Tempeh came from LightLife, a local alternative protein producer.  The image below shows it on our gluten-free flatbread in lieu of the traditional rye.

 

To satisfy the sweeter tooth, fresh Gala apples were folded into a batter of cinnamon, butter, brown sugar and wheat flour, then baked into a blondie which was then drowned in scratch made dulce de leche caramel and toasted pecans.  A dollop of whipped creme and a dusting of cinnamon sugar completed this picture.

Most of my hours were filled with preparing and running orders, making sure I was organized and prepared (which if you know me is a precarious dance), and making sure the guests were happy.  A lull on Saturday gave me the time to experiment and turn some bread into something unexpected, a roasted garlic and parmesan braided treat based on a 6 decade old recipe.  This one I can’t wait to make again!

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