Apple pie is, of course, the perennial favorite of all the pies.  Whether it's a crumbly-topped Dutch Apple or a double-cruster, apple pie is definitely the king of pastries here in the U.S. of A.  I love the making and the eating, but for some reason, I can't stand the part where I have to put the crust into the pie pan.  Maybe I have a deep down suppressed fear of pie pans after some unfortunate incident with one as a child (I'm cautious around glass pop bottles after one shattered and cut me as a kid- I guess that dates me a bit, too). 

Or, maybe I like the freedom of just tossing the crust on a pan, dumping the ingredients in, and flopping the edges up.  I think I kind of understand the joy of "dump cakes" now, although I still maintain that the name should be changed.

Regardless of your stance on pies, pop bottles, or dump cakes, I think you'll like this apple galette.  It's a crowd pleaser, it's easy, and it looks like something you picked up at a french bakery. Win, win win!

p.s. That awesome table top is at 99 Bottles Winery, made by the talented and amazing Mandy Youngquist over at Youngbranch.


This is another one of those oh-crap-I-don't-know-what-to-get-the-man-who-has-everything presents for my dad.  My dad just buys whatever he needs and my mom takes care of the socks and dress shirt thing.  I think dads kind of get screwed over on Father's Day- Moms get presents and dinners and flowers and dads get ties and socks or some Pinterest craft.  I don't know about anyone else's dads, but mine wouldn't exactly be thrilled about a poster with candy glued to it and a cheesy poem about how his coolness relates to candy bars.  Maybe one king-sized snickers that also came with spending a whole day with his kids and in-laws.  Or a six-pack of beer (please don't arrange it into a cake and tie ribbons on it- this is Father's Day, not a baby shower) that comes with a huge steak dinner, a nice new set of sharp knives, and a day spent fishing- now we're talking.  Dads are practical.  Dads like food.  Dads like manly things.  Dads like spending time with their kids.  If you don't like the idea of food, though, I also wrote a post on Manly Presents that you can make yourself.

In that line of thought, I made some of this spicy, garlicy, just a little sweet sauce to go with the beef jerky that I made for him this year.  I may throw in a cutting board, too (let's face it, they get ruined when you leave them in a sink of dishes or lazily run them through the dishwasher- I'm totally guilty of both).  You can almost never have too many nice, small cutting boards.

Just a quick note, I didn't actually can/process this stuff, so keep it in the fridge.  It won't last long in there, I promise! ('cause you'll eat it, not 'cause it will go bad- it should actually last several weeks in the fridge).


Father's day is just around the corner and I've been scrambling to find something for my dad.  It's hard when you get to be this age.  A gold pasta picture frame is no longer acceptable, yet I don't make enough money to gift my parents with cool vacations or grandbabies.  I'm stuck in the middle and need to make gifts, but I'm almost always at a loss for ideas.  Homemade gifts usually ride a very fine line between really crappy and wonderfully thoughtful.  Unfortunately, most DIY father's day gift ideas out there are for little kids to make and they look like it.  Apparently I'm not "adulting" very well and, just like when I shop for shoes, I'm relegated to the kids section on this one.  Maybe someday...

Anyways, I scoured pinterest and googled my little heart out for "cool Father's day gifts" and "Father's Day gifts he'll actually like" to no avail.  I've already exhausted my Manly Presents blog post by giving all of those things at Christmas.  Jeez, I have no self control when it comes to gifting.  So, I resorted to food.  I thought beef jerky was a pretty safe one, too, as I don't know a man alive who doesn't love it.  I present to you, easy beef jerky:


We have lots of native plants and trees around our house, thanks to its former owner, and I'm always looking for ways to use them.  This year, the birds didn't eat all of the Saskatoon berries, which was a miracle!  Last year, they would get to them at the exact moment that they were ripe, and I think I only got to eat two or three of them.  This year, the tree is loaded with them in all their purple, blueberry-ish glory! 

If you've never had a Saskatoon berry (or juneberry, or serviceberry), you're missing out!  They look like a blueberry, but taste more like a cross between a grape and an apple.  This website has a really interesting history and background for the berries, if you're interested.  

I love pie, I love almonds, I love berries, but I don't love making pies.  For some reason, a galette is just so much easier than a pie with its carefree form and flopsy crust.  Maybe I'm just lazy...

This recipe is sort of adapted from the always-wonderful Smitten Kitchen cookbook, but it's a pretty basic galette/almond paste recipe