Home Cookin', Sweet Tooth

Gooseberry Creek’s Perfect Pie Crust

For those of you who have been following me… you already know I love pie. I’ve already mentioned that my husband and I had barbecue for our wedding dinner, we love it so much. However, I failed to mention that we had a pie bar instead of cake. We love pie.

We love pie so much, that not soon after we were wed I was practicing my pie skills almost monthly to hone them in. I was on a mission to make the PERFECT pie. And the perfect pie starts with the perfect crust.

It took me a while to perfect this baby… and half of the struggle is actually in how you mix it. Although what goes into it is VERY important too.

Gooseberry Creek's Perfect Pie Crust

  • Servings: 2 Double Crusts
  • Difficulty: moderate
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  • 3 c. Flour
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 6 Tbsp Butter
  • 6 Tbsp Crisco
  • 1/2-3/4 c. Cold Water


  1. Preheat oven to 350º F.
  2. Mix Flour and Salt in a large mixing bowl with a fork.
  3. Cut in butter and Crisco with a pastry cutter until the mixture forms crumbles just under pea sized and smaller.
  4. Mix with a fork as you slowly add drizzles of cold water to the mixture until you can make a well formed but crumbly ball with your hands.
  5. Cut ball into quarters and form the sections into 4 individual balls.
  6. Individually, roll out each ball with a floured rolling pin on a floured pastry mat.
  7. Place bottom crust in a pie dish, poke holes throughout crust with fork, cut extra crust off the edges and add decorative design as desired
  8. For Fruit and Custard Pies: Bake for 10-15 minutes before adding fillings and top crust. Return the pie to the oven to bake for the indicated time on your fruit or custard pie recipe.
  9. For Creme Pies: Bake for 10 minutes before heavily brushing on melted butter. Bake an additional 5 minutes then lightly brush on some beaten egg. Bake for 5 more minutes before removing from the oven. Let cool before filling your pie.

Drink it Up, Home Cookin'


Fermented tea, also known as kombucha or “Booch” as I like to call it, has been around for hundreds of years but has only started to gain popularity in Western culture in the past several years. Full of probiotics and antioxidants Booch is great for digestive health as well and the immune system.

Many people have a strong aversion to the taste of kombucha, and I’ll have to agree with them… but only IF we are talking about store bought Booch. Home-brewed fermented tea is SO much better than the commercially bottled version. It has a slightly apple-like taste and is slightly acidic and tart with natural carbonation. It’s wonderful.

Just trust me. Either find a friend to bum it from or find a local store that brews and sells their own. Or even just take a leap of faith and brew your own! It took me a while to perfect my own brewing technique but here it is. I hope you enjoy it!

Gooseberry Creek’s First Booch Brew

  • Difficulty: easy
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  • 28 c. Filtered Water-divided use
  • 4 c. Raw Sugar
  • 2 SCOBY-at least 1/4 inch thick and 4 inches in diameter
  • 4 c. Starter Liquid
  • 32 Black Tea Bags

Instructions for First Time Brewing:

  1. Clean all supplies and your hands with the white vinegar.
  2. Replace plastic dispenser spigot with your metal one.
  3. Place 1 flour sack cloth over the top of the drink dispenser to keep clean and keep out fruit flies.
  4. Stick Thermometer Strip to the outside of your 2 gallon dispenser.
  5. Place pot over medium heat, pour 14 c. of filtered water into your pot and place in the tea bags.
  6. Remove flour sack cloth, pour 14 c. refrigerated AND filtered water into the drink dispenser, replace flour sack cloth.
  7. When water comes to a boil, turn off burner and set a timer for 10 minutes of steeping time
  8. Add sugar, stirring until dissolved.
  9. After 10 minutes, remove all tea bags.
  10. Remove flour sack cloth from dispenser and pour in sweet tea mixture, replace the flour sack cloth.
  11. When the thermometer strip reads less than 100 degrees Farenheit, clean your hands with white vinegar again, remove the flour sack cloth and place your SCOBYs into your tea mixture.
  12. Pour starter fluid in over the top and replace flour sack cloth, fastening it with a rubber-band
  13. Place Dispenser in an area out of sunlight with good air flow
  14. In 5 days begin tasting your brew daily until it reaches your desired flavor.
  15. Wash bottles with white vinegar.
  16. Bottle brew for 2nd fermentation or fridge storage.

Home Cookin', Main Course

Gooseberry Creek’s Sweet and Smoky BBQ Rub

My husband and I love us some good barbecue. I mean we had barbecue catered for our wedding dinner. I’m not just talking any barbecue, but the full feast: pulled pork, pulled chicken, baked beans, potato salad and cole slaw. It was delicious and I enjoyed every mouth full in my perfect white wedding dress.

So through the years I’ve tried to perfect my own barbecue skills. Though they aren’t quite up to par with Pappy’s Smokehouse (the BEST barbecue I’ve ever had), but I have managed to perfect my BBQ Rub and it is fantastic. It is the perfect dry rub for ribs or fantastic seasoning for pulled pork when used with Cherry Balsalmic Vinegar.

It is literally the perfect combination of smoked paprika, spice and brown sugar. I haven’t had a meat yet that it wasn’t good on and even though I prefer it with smoked meat, it is still delicious used on meat in the crockpot or Instant Pot. Here it is folks… and I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

Gooseberry Creek’s Sweet and Smoky BBQ Rub

  • Difficulty: easy
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  • 1/2 c. Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Smoked Paprika
  • 1 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Onion Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 Tbsp Dried Summer Savory
  • 1/2 Tbsp Dried Oregano
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper


Pour ingredients in a container that has an air-tight lid and mix well with fork until well combined. Use as Dry Rub on smoked meat or use with Cherry Balsalmic Vinegar to make pulled pork or chicken. Place lid firmly on container and store extra for future use.

A Piece of Work, Drink it Up, Kitchen Projects

Fermented Tea

I had never heard of fermenting tea until my sister-in-law came to visit us 2 years ago in Colorado. I remember walking into the quaint homeopathic store in Manitou Springs, Anna’s Apothecary, and immediately hearing my sister-in-law’s voice raise with excitement as she noticed they had kombucha. Of course, she insisted that we all have some.

It was delicious.

With a faint tart flavor, a little bit of sweetness and the perfect balance of ginger, I quickly became intrigued. My sister-in-law had been drinking it, and making it, for years and I listened carefully as she talked about it so that I might learn more. After she left, Eliott and I briefly discussed making our own, but he admitted that he hadn’t loved it.

Fast-forward to me living in Missouri with a deployed husband and needing a hobby. I’d seen more and more on Pinterest about Kombucha, and tried some from Whole foods on a visit out to a friends’ home in the city. So I decided to give it a go. Fermenting tea, that is.

My first step, was to order The Big Book of Kombucha to learn what supplies I needed and how to get started. Ya’ll, I finished that book in 2 days I found it so interesting. I was also so excited to start that I’d contacted a friend I knew brewed to obtain a SCOBY and starter fluid before I’d even finished reading.

The supplies I quickly gathered in my eagerness to begin were:

After that, all I needed was the SCOBY and starter fluid I’d gotten from a friend!

It took me a while to get the hang of brewing kombucha and fermenting it, but I’ve found my perfect balance. Stay posted to learn how I brew my Kombucha!

Breakfast, Home Cookin', Popular

Gooseberry Creek’s Amazing French Toast

I’ve never been a huge french toast fan. Waffles were always my favorite, and I preferred pancakes over french toast hands down. But this french toast is a different story.

When my friend, Sara, and I walked into our first spice shop we were like kids in a candy store. Sara immediately went to the baking section and started smelling samples while I milled about the selections. After a few minutes, Sara called me over with an exclamation of “It smells like Christmas!” And it did.

It was a special sugar mixed with spices and vanilla beans. At the time I didn’t know what I’d use it for, but I knew I wanted it. Sara wanted to use hers for coffee, but I’ve never been a coffee drinker. It wasn’t until my mom requested French Toast for her Mother’s Day Breakfast that I discovered the perfect use for my purchase.

Thus, Gooseberry Creek’s Amazing French Toast Recipe was born.

Ya’ll… even my dad likes it. He’s picky and he’s never liked french toast, but he likes this.

Gooseberry Creek’s Amazing French Toast

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Difficulty: moderate
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-8 Eggs

-1 1/3 c. Milk

-1/3 c. All-Purpose Flour

-1/3 cup Granulated White Sugar

-1/3 cup Spiced Vanilla Bean Sugar

-5 Dashes of Salt

-1 Loaf Texas Toast Bread (or your preferred)

-1 Stick Butter


1. Heat your griddle over medium heat. I prefer to use a long cast iron griddle that spans 2 burners. It will cook 6 slices at a time.

2. In a large, flat, edged dish whisk together eggs and milk until well combined. Continue whisking as you slowly add in the flour. Add sugars and salt. Mix well.

3. Depending on the size of your mixture dish and griddle, place 2-6 slices of bread in the mixture for 30 seconds. Next, flip slices to soak the other side for 30 seconds. This limited time prevents the bread from getting soggy.

4. Place 1 Tbsp of butter on the griddle and transfer your coated bread slices to the griddle. Cook each side for 2 minutes or until golden brown. Remove golden brown slices to a covered heated dish.

5. Repeat Steps 3 and 4 until all the bread or all the mixture has been used.

6. Serve Immediately with your choice of topping. Personally, I recommend Pure Maple Syrup.

7. Enjoy!