Monday, September 17, 2012

Website Blowout Special!

For this week only, we're offering to build you a comprehensive website for only $400! With only 6 slots left, this blowout special ends Thursday, so call us today at 828-264-2670 and expand your business!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Festive Fall Recipes

    The official start of fall is not for another two weeks, but if you look at the trees dotting the mountainside of the High Country you would think differently. The first chill of fall air graced our presence this weekend and soon the aromatic scents of pumpkin and caramel will follow. Pull out your warm blankets stuffed in the back of your closet and cozy up to these fall recipes.

            Homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte

 Homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte


Pumpkin spice syrup

-  1 ½ cups of water

-  1 ½ cups sugar

-  4 cinnamon sticks or 1 Tbsp ground cinnamon

-  ½ tsp ground cloves

-  ½ tsp ground ginger

-  1 tsp ground nutmeg

-  3 Tbsp canned pumpkin

For a single latte:

-  2-4 Tbsp espresso

-  6-8 oz skim milk, very hot

-  1-2 Tbsp pumpkin spice syrup

-  Optional: Whipped Cream

  1. To make the syrup: Cook sugar and water in a small pot over medium heat until the mixture is completely clear.
  2. Whisk in the remaining ingredients and continue to cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Do not allow mixture to come to a boil.
  3. Allow mixture to cool for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Strain syrup through cheesecloth or a fine mesh strainer into a large jar or bottle of your choice.
  5. Keep syrup in the fridge, it will last a while.
  6. To make the latte, combine espresso with heated milk, and 1-2 Tbsp of pumpkin spice syrup (add to taste).
  7. If desired, top with whipped cream.

Estimated cook time: 25 minutes


Apple Cider Caramel Cookies:

-  1 cup unsalted butter, almost melted
-  1 cup granulated sugar
-  ½ tsp salt
-  1 (7.4 oz) box of Alpine Spiced Apple Cider instant drink mix
- 2 eggs
-  1 tsp vanilla extract
-  1 tsp baking soda
-  ½ tsp baking powder
-  3 cups All-Purpose flour
-  1 (14 oz) bag of Kraft caramels

1.      Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper.

2. In a stand mixer, cream together butter, sugar, salt, and all 10 packets of apple cider mix until smooth and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla extract, and then mix in the baking soda and baking powder. Add the flour and mix until just combined.

3. With a standard (size 50) cookie scoop, scoop the dough scrapping off the excess as you go up the bowl. Flatten the dough slightly in your hand and place a caramel in the center. Work the dough around the caramel sealing well. Place the cookies two inches apart on the sheets.

4. Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until golden brown around the edges. After baking, carefully slide the parchment with the cookies onto the counter. Let cool until they are no longer soft but still slightly warm. Twist gently to remove, and cool the rest of the way upside down on the parchment or on a cooling rack.
So get up and into the kitchen and start your fall pre-season baking!


Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Take a Hike!

            Living in the High Country, we have the ability to walk out of our front door and see a big, beautiful mountain staring us in the face. During the winter we can drive just a few short miles down the road and experience some of the best skiing on the East Coast. Needless to say, the High Country is a pretty spectacular place to be.

One of my absolute favorite outdoor activities up here is hiking. It may sound corny, but I always feel much more "in-tune" with nature when I take a hike. There is absolutely no better feeling than taking that final step to the top of a peak or a lookout, and you look around to see the most breath-taking view. I remember the first time I ever stepped out and saw the way those big, beautiful mountains seemed to roll on forever, and suddenly I felt so small in comparison. It's truly an incredible feeling.
           There are countless trails and climbs located right here in the High Country where you can experience this for yourself. Whether you're a hiking junkie like me, or you are just getting started, this list of trails is great for helping you find the perfect hike!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Your Perfect Labor Day Menu!

Whether it's the delicious smell of hamburgers sizzling on the grill, the juicy and flavorful watermelon, or the sound of a cold beer being opened, we all love the tastes of summer. Unfortunately, summer is coming to an end, but Labor Day is the perfect way to end it with a bang! Try out some of these delicious recipes on your day off and enjoy what's left of the season! 

Almost-Famous Fried Pickles  

What you're going to need: 
For the Sauce: 
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon drained horseradish
  • 2 teaspoons ketchup
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
  • For the Pickles: 
    • Peanut or vegetable oil, for frying
    • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1 3/4teaspoons Cajun seasoning
    • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
    • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
    • Kosher salt
    • 2 cups sliced dill pickles, drained

    • Directions: 
      • Make the sauce: Mix the mayonnaise, horseradish, ketchup and Cajun seasoning in a bowl; set aside.
        Fry the pickles: Heat 1 inch peanut oil in a pot over medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 375 degrees F. Meanwhile, whisk the flour, Cajun seasoning, Italian seasoning, cayenne pepper, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 cup water in a large bowl until smooth. Spread the pickles on paper towels and pat dry.
        Add half of the pickles to the batter and toss to coat. Remove from the batter using a slotted spoon, letting the excess drip off, and add to the oil one at a time. Fry until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes; remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Return the oil to 375 degrees F and repeat with the remaining pickles and batter. Serve immediately with the prepared sauce.

        Creamy Dijon-Dill Potato Salad 
        What you need: 
        • 3 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, peeled
        • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
        • 2 stalks celery
        • 1 cup mayonnaise
        • 1 small red onion, finely chopped (about 1/2 cup)
        • 1/4 cup tightly packed chopped fresh dill
        • 1 to 2 tablespoons vinegar
        • 1/2 lemon, juiced
        • 1 tablespoon grainy or regular Dijon mustard
        Put the potatoes in a big pot with enough water to cover by 1-inch. Season with salt and bring the water to a boil. Cook just until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork, about 25 minutes.
        Drain the potatoes and return them to the uncovered pot off the heat. Let them sit until almost room temperature. (Cooling them in the warm pot will get rid of any excess water in the potatoes, and that's good.)
        Meanwhile, cut the white parts off the ends of the celery stalks. Cut the stalks in half lengthwise, then across into 1/4-inch slices. Stir the celery, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and the remaining ingredients together in a serving bowl large enough to hold all the potatoes.
        When they're cool, cut the potatoes into 1-inch pieces, add them to the bowl as you go. Stir gently until all the potatoes are coated with dressing. You can make the salad up to a couple of hours in advance. Keep covered at room temperature. Don't refrigerate or the potatoes will lose their rich, smooth texture.