Friday, April 30, 2010

this week's moment

{this moment} - "A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see." Inspired by SouleMama.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Kale and Basil Pesto

Basil is one of my favorite herbs, it reminds me of summer. I try to use it whenever I can, especially when I can walk outside and pick it. So I could not resist adding it to the mix and keeping a hit of that traditional pesto flavor. I served the pesto over handmade roasted tomato fettucini from The Pasta Wench. It was delicious. Honestly her pasta is so good I could eat it plain, strait from the pot, but it was even more delicious with the pesto sauce. This is another recipe inspired by Farm+House+Table. I really like the vegetarian meal list on their site. They are very creative. Here is my version of a Kale and Basil Pesto, I hope you enjoy.

- 3 cloves garlic, or more if you like garlic as much as I do
- 1/3c pecans, toasted
- 1/2c grated Parmesan
- 1/3c extra virgin olive oil
- 2/3c cottage cheese or Greek yogurt
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- 1 Bunch fresh Kale
- 1 fist full of fresh basil

Toast the pecans in the oven. Then combine the kale, basil, garlic and pecans in a food processor fitted with the metal blade and pulse several times until kale is well chopped. Add Parmesan cheese and puree until blended. Next drizzle in the olive oil, while the food processor is still on, until the mixture becomes the consistency of a thick pesto sauce. Add in cottage cheese and begin to season with salt and pepper to taste.

Garden Update

Spring in western NC is always a little unpredictable. The first part of April was beautiful. We had a few weeks of consistently warm, sunny weather. This was followed by several days of rain and then cold frosty nights. Nevertheless, our plants seem to have survived the sudden changes unscathed and our garden is coming along nicely. On my last trip to Sleepy Hollow Farm I came home with several varieties of tomato, zucchini, and cucumber plants. We got those in the ground and are looking forward to filling the rest of our beds.

We also finally got a rain barrel to collect water for the garden. I found a really reasonably priced, locally made one at Earth Fare last week. Over the last couple of days I started to get really stressed out about all the missed rain collecting opportunities, so yesterday during a sunny break in the storm I decided it was a perfect time to connect the gutter to the barrel. As soon as I got the pipe disconnected from the gutter the sky opened up. It was like standing under a small waterfall. Still determined to collect water I stayed outside only to realize that even with the ladder I was not tall enough to reach the rain gutter. In the end with a little help from my man everything was connected. Water quickly began to stream out of the pipe we used. I am still pretty shocked at how much water actually passes through the rain gutters and can be stored. I really had no idea.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Visit to Sleepy Hollow Farm

You know you are in good hands when a farmer calls his hens by name. The man and I have been buying eggs and vegetables from Sleepy Hollow Farm for about a year now. I don't think I will ever be able to go back to grocery store eggs again. As a consumer it is important to me to know that people take pride in the products that they sell, that someone puts their name on it and believes in what they do. When you visit a small farm that is what you get, people who love their animals and care about the food they are selling you. When I visit Joan and Mike, owners of Sleepy Hollow Farm, they talk to me, answer my questions, teach me about gardening, and let me visit the ladies (the chickens). Their garden is immaculate and their birds are beautiful. This trip I came home with 3 dozen brown eggs, spinach, lettuce mix, radishes, and tomato, squash, and zucchini plants for my garden. It was most excellent. If you are around Bryson City, NC stop by their farm, visit their ladies, pick some veggies with them, and leave knowing that the food that you are your family will be eating is healthy and was grown with pride. They will also be at the Bryson City Farmer's Market on Friday mornings throughout the summer.

To see more pictures of my visit to Sleepy Hollow Farm visit my photo album.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Dark Chocolate Cherry Brownies

I have been trying to pay attention to what I eat. Part of my effort has included cutting most sugar out of my daily diet. I say most because I believe in balance. Every now and then a girl needs a little chocolate. Lets face it, if I completely tried to cut all deserts out of my diet it would probably take a little over a week for me to end up sitting on the kitchen floor eating an entire cake on my own. So for the past 2 months I have been letting myself have desert once a week. This gives me something to look forward to. When I am disciplined during the week and resist the urge to eat sweets I feel like I am earning my weekend desert at which point I get to go big and not feel guilty. These brownies were inspired during a bike ride on Sunday afternoon where I road a little to far with no snacks. During one particularly hard hill climb my boss happened to drive by cheering. Luckly his sweet little girl was nice enough to share her organic gummy fish with me. Seriously those fish saved me. Needless to say I was thinking about my end of the week desert the entire way home. So here is my weekend, no guilt, go big desert:

Dark Chocolate Cherry Brownies with Walnuts

Preheat Oven: 350

- 1/2 c butter
- 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 1 c sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2/3 c all-purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 c chopped walnuts (optional)
- 1 c frozen, fresh or dried cherries (if you use dried then about 20min before you start to mix soak them in water so they rehydrate)
- 1/2 to 3/4 c dark chocolate chips (the quantity depends on how much you love chocolate)

- Grease you baking pan (either 8x8x2" or 9x9x2")
- In a medium pan melt butter and unsweetened chocolate over low heat, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and let cool
- Stir sugar into cooled chocolate and butter
- Add the eggs one at a time beating until combined then stir in vanilla
- In a separate bowl combine flour and baking soda
- Add flour mixture to chocolate mixture and stir until combined
- Fold in nuts, dark chocolate chips, and cherries

Bake about 30-35min (until a cake tester or toothpick goes into and comes out of the brownies cleanly)

Friday, April 23, 2010

This week's moment

{this moment} - "A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see." Inspired by SouleMama.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Kale & Cannelini Bean Ragout

After a long, eventful day I needed something quick and easy to throw together for dinner. Usually soup is a good choice when I don't have a lot of time or just want to throw things in a pot and let it do its thing while I go and do mine. It is also great when you have veggies sitting around that need to be used. This soup was inspired by a recipe I came across on the Farm+House+Table site. Those ladies have a fantastic collection of vegetarian recipes. I made a few adjustments based on what we had in our pantry. Soup is a great opportunity to be creative with your cooking. I usually wander around the kitchen and throw things in as I go.

  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 4 1 1/2-inch-thick slices ciabatta bread, crusts removed, each slice quartered
  • chopped fresh herbs
  • 3 garlic cloves (plus one if you love garlic), finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
  • 1 bunch kale, coarsely chopped
  • 2 c vegetable stock
  • 1 14 1/2-ounce can whole tomatoes, crushed with your hands
  • 1 c cooked cannellini beans
  • 1c cooked lentils
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1/4 c dry white wine
  • parmesan
  • Heat 2 tablespoons oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add bread and 1 teaspoon herbs; cook until bread is golden on both sides, turning with tongs, about 2 minutes total. Transfer croutons to bowl; sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • Add remaining 4 Tbsp oil and onion to the same pot and cook until translucent.
  • Add the garlic, and crushed red pepper to the pot; sauté over medium heat for about 30 seconds.
  • Deglaze the pan with the white wine for about a minute.
  • Add kale and stock; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until kale wilts, about 5 minutes.
  • Add tomatoes with juice, beans, lentils, and remaining herbs.
  • Cover and simmer 15 minutes.
  • Season with salt and pepper. Ladle ragout into shallow bowls. Top with croutons, a sprinkle of parmesan, and serve.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Southern Buttermilk Biscuits

Practice has taught me that making buttermilk biscuits is more about technique than ingredients. Yes, you need to know what to put into your mixing bowl but most recipes are pretty similar. I think I have tried almost all of them. Yet achieving that perfect buttermilk biscuit texture and consistency has always been just out of my reach, until now. I have finally figured out how to make the delicious, golden, fluffy biscuits I have been dreaming of. These are the lessons that I have learned through my many attempts at achieving the perfect buttermilk biscuit consistency and texture:
  • Handle the dough as little as possible, over handling makes tough biscuits
  • You want to keep the ingredients cold so mix quickly!
  • Using a food processor allows you to work quickly and avoid over mixing (but can definitely be done by hand which is some times more fun anyway, especially if you are mixing with kids)
  • While you are mixing the dry ingredients keep the butter in the fridge to keep it cold for as long as possible
  • Using a rolling pin to flatten over works the dough so just pat out with our hands - part of the fun of cooking is playing with your food
  • If you like crusty biscuits then space them about 1" apart, they will not rise as much as biscuits that are put closer together
  • You can freeze the cut biscuit dough for up to one month uncooked then when you are ready to cook place frozen biscuits in oven at 450 for 20min
Now that I have shared all that I know about biscuit making technique here is the recipe that I have found works best:

  • 2cups all purpose flour (white lily is a good one for biscuit making)
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 6 Tbsp unsalted butter cut into small chunks and kept cold
  • 3/4cup buttermilk
  • Preheat oven to 450
  • Combing dry ingredients in a bowl or food processor
  • Cut butter into flour until it looks like course meal (you can use your hands or if you are working with a food processor then pulse a few times until reaches the right consistency)
  • Add the buttermilk and mix until just combined, if the mixture is dry then add a little more buttermilk, you want it to be a little sticky
  • Turn the dough onto a floured surface
  • Gently pat the dough out until it is about 3/4" thick
  • Use a round cutter or pint glass to cut out the biscuits
  • gently knead scraps together and form into a biscuit
  • Bake for 10-12min
Bon Appetit!

Monday, April 19, 2010

This week's moment

{this moment} - "A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see." Inspired by SouleMama.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Veggie and Tofu Tacos

This is one of our favorites. It is really simple and fast but still delicious. The fun thing about this meal is that every time we make it its a little different depending on what we happen to have in our pantry. I like recipes like that, no rules, just use what you like.

What we like to use:
- Extra Firm Tofu
- Taco seasoning packet
- Black Beans
- Homemade Guacamole (avocado, lime juice, EVOO, salt, garlic, red onion)
- Spinach
- Tomato
- Feta Goat Cheese (or what ever cheese you happen to have)
- Salsa
- Yellow or Red Pepper
- Frozen Corn
- Garlic
- Red onion
- Corn tortillas

- Cooking the tofu properly is the key to enjoying tofu meals. It really needs to be browned well. So heat EVOO is a large skillet that will accommodate all of your ingredients as you add them.
- Cut the tofu into 1/2" to 1" squares and place in hot skillet
- Do not stir or flip until the tofu have had time to turn golden in the olive oil
- Make sure to brown all of the sides of the tofu squares
- Once the tofu has browned to you liking add the taco seasoning according to the directions on the packet, usually you stir the seasoning in water then pour over you meat or tofu then let it cook down
- after the water / seasoning mix has reduced to about half add the black beans to the skillet
- once the beans have warmed and absorbed some of the seasoning add in the veggies of your choice
- Allow so simmer over low to medium heat so the flavors have time to marry and the veggies soften a little
- Warm your tortillas in the toaster for about 20sec to soften, pay close attention because when they start to soften they fall down and you do not want to burn them
- Fill your tortillas with with the tofu and veggies then top with some cheese, guacamole, and salsa
- Enjoy!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Acheville Farmer's Market

Today was the first Saturday of the Asheville City Farmer's Market. I have been looking forward to the market season because it means spring is in full swing and summer is just around the corner. I convinced my mother in-law, which really did not require much because she appreciates good food as much as I do, to make a little trip to Asheville with me to meet the farmers and check out the early season produce. Usually during the growing season I shop at the markets in Sylva and Bryson City because they are much closer to my house but it was a treat to spend a day in the big city. I am constantly amazed by how many food producers we have in western NC. I was able to sample local goat cheese, meat, veggies, homemade pasta, and pastries. Because it is so early several sellers also had vegetable plants available for anyone who would like to start their own garden. I was also given an early birthday present from my grandparents in-law who bought me a fig tree and pineapple sage (which actually smells just like pineapple). I cannot wait for our first figs to come in. It was really amazing to see so many people excited enough about fresh organic food to get to the market by 8am on a Saturday morning. Here are just a few of the items available:

Meat from Hickory Nut Gap Meats: You can order or visit their farm store some time and see the animals.
Pasta from Pasta Wench: visit them online and try for yourself, really yummy.
Goat cheese from Spinning Spider Creamery: you can one day ship from their online store or pick some up at various locations in Asheville including Earth Fare, Greenlife, and several others.
After walking around and sampling everything we made our way to Tupelo Honey Cafe for breakfast where there is usually a line but well worth the wait. Everything was delicious. It was a perfect day of food.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Happy Chickens at Sleepy Hollow Farm

Apparently you do not need hormones to make giant eggs, just really happy, healthy chickens. I am lucky enough to live down the road from some of the most beautiful chickens and an amazing organic gardening couple. For those of you who have never had the pleasure of cooking with or eating farm fresh eggs I encourage you to find your nearest organic egg farmer. You will notice the difference from store bought, mass produced eggs the moment you crack one open and see the beautiful, full, orange yolk. Organic eggs really do taste better too. Additionally visiting a farm will give you the opportunity to see the chickens, meet the farmers, and really know how the animals that you are consuming (or consuming products from) are treated. This afternoon I road my bike up to my neighbors at Sleepy Hollow Farm to visit "the ladies" (the chickens) and pick up my weekly eggs. I just wanted to share with you how amazing they are. They were so big that we could only fit 11 in the jumbo egg container and I had to tape it shut. Needless to say the bike ride home was a little nerve racking. But the eggs all made it home in one piece. Sleepy Hollow Farm will be at the Bryson City farmer's market on Fridays this summer. If you are in the neighborhood stop by, say hello, and grab some eggs and veggies from them. Soon I hope to post some pictures of the ladies for you all.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Zucchini Gratin

When it comes to food the power of suggestion beats me every time. More often then not a beautiful food photo is what first inspires me to try out a new recipe. Usually once I have seen a delicious looking picture I cannot get whatever it is out of my head and must taste it. Yes, I am a food advertisers dream. Recently I saw a picture of this Zucchini Gratin dish on another food blog (Bless Her Heart) and thought it looked delicious. I will admit that I really like roasted vegetables, especially when they are smothered in cheese. So when my mother in -law asked us to bring something as a side for dinner I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to test out the recipe. The basic recipe I used can be found at (follow this link). The only adjustment I made was that I really wanted a little bit of a creamy texture. So I made a garlic-lemon cream sauce to drizzle over the gratin last, just before I put it in the oven. I highly recommend trying this recipe out.

Additional Cream Sauce:
- One Tbsp butter melted in a small sauce pan
- One clove minced garlic, simmered in the butter
- 1 to 2 Tbsp cream added to the garlic
- Juice from one lemon

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Our Garden - Part 1

One of my favorite parts of spring is planting our garden. In the past we have had only one bed and a couple of small containers, so we have been limited to growing just a few things. This year we really want to try to grow more of our own food, given the space that we have, and then try to supplement with the local farmer's markets. Hopefully in the long run this will save money (and we will not end up with $10 tomatoes), give us more say in the production of foods we consume, and reduce the amount of packaging we use in purchased foods. So we built 3 new raised beds in our yard and still have the old bed. We spent one day building and digging, and two days moving dirt. Today we finally put seeds into the ground. In the first bed we planted spinach, collards, lettuce, and cabbage. We will keep you all posted on our progress and the yummy things we cook over the summer with our veggies.

Bed 1:
- Spinach
- Collards
- Lettuce
- Cabbage

Bed 2:
- Zucchini
- Squash
- Eggplant
- Jalapenos
- Banana Peppers

Bed 3:
- Bell Peppers (Yellow, Orange, Red, Green)
- Tomatoes

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Easter Fun

We had a great Easter weekend. After my knee surgery it was so nice to finally spin on my bike. We set a nice easy pace and made time to visit with some of the locals, goats that is! Then we headed up to my in-laws for a lovely Easter dinner. I am so lucky. My in-laws are amazing! I really enjoy hanging out with them and man can my mother in-law cook!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Local Bike Event: 4/11 Knobscorcher

The Knobscorcher MTB race will be held this Sunday on the Tsali trails in Bryson City, NC (for trail maps and info click here). This race is SERC #3 (South Eastern Regional Championship Series/ AMBC / Southern Classic Series / US Cup Qualifier). This race is always fun and exciting with events for all ages and still levels! For race information including the race flier and schedule click here.

Monday, April 5, 2010

4/17 - Dillsboro Appalachian Growers Fair

Saturday, April 17, 2010 10:00 am-5:00 pm, Monteith Park in Dillsbor

"A unique fair celebrating farmers and growers at Monteith Park. There will be an open-air plant and produce market, seed exchange, horticultural demonstrations and educational programs of interest to the hobby gardener, grower and farmer. There will be plenty of music, local food, and activities for kids. This all-day event is a fund-raiser for the Monteith Farmstead Restoration Project, our community effort restoring the historic Monteith farmhouse as the Appalachian Women's Museum." For information check out the Visit Dillsboro website.

Local Event: 4/8 Tuck River Watershed

On Thursday, April 8 at 5:30pm The Watershed Association of the Tuckasegee River is hosting a Pizza Party at Mad Batter in Cullowhee! This event will be a great opportunity to learn about our local watershed and what we can do to help improve the water quality. The event tickets are $15. There will be a sampling of beer donated by Tuckaseegee Brewing (you can bring your own as well) and live music by the Dan River Drifters. This will be a great way to kick off your summer river season! So come out and show your support. Hope to see you there.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Plain Old Bread

I will admit to being a little bit of a bread snob. I get mildly offended at the products that I find in the grocery store posing as bread. Just the thought of fresh bread coming out of the oven - the smell, the texture, the taste - makes my mouth water. Three summers ago I became slightly fixated on learning how to make my own bread. Every day it was a new loaf full of possibilities. The nice thing is that it is so simple: flour, water, yeast. And there are so many ways to be creative. The process is not that difficult either: mix, knead, wait, bake and ta-da you have your bread. I am a huge fan of mixing by hand although occasionally using a mixer is nice too. I have never used a bread machine and I probably never will. I would feel cheated out of the experience of baking the bread and would not feel like it was my own. If you are at all interested in baking your own bread there are two books I highly recommend: "Bread Alone" and "Tassajara Bread Book." Both are fantastic and well worth the investment. Here is a very simple bread recipe that I first started with and still use regularly. Once you feel like you have gotten the hang of it you should play with the ingredients. I like to mix wheat and unbleached white flour at different ratios. If I want a hint of sweet I add honey, never sugar. Occasionally a little EVOO is nice too, or some sunflower seeds or garlic. The possibilities are endless. Because the basic ingredients are so few and simple go ahead and splurge on a nice bag of flour. Here is a very simple bread recipe that I first started with and still use regularly. Once you feel like you have gotten the hang of it you should play with the ingredients. I like to mix wheat and unbleached white flour at different ratios. If I want a hint of sweet I add honey, never sugar. Occasionally a little EVOO is nice too, or some sunflower seeds or garlic. The possibilities are endless. Because the basic ingredients are so few and simple go ahead and splurge on a nice bag of flour. Yes, there is a lot of waiting during bread making so grab a book, go for a jog or jump on your bike, have a beer or glass of wine. Just relax and bake.

Plain Old Bread

- One packet active dry yeast
- 2 1/4 Cup warm Water
- 1 Tbsp salt
- 6-7 Cup flour

- In a large mixing bowl combine water and yeast. Allow to sit for about 5min
- Add about half the flour and stir until combined then stir in the salt
- Gradually mix in the rest of the flour. This will get increasing difficult and you will eventually need to mix by hand, or if you are using a mixer switch from the paddle attachment to the bread hook.
- Dump your dough onto a well floured, clean, dry surface and knead it by pushing down and forward with the heel of your hand and then pulling back from the top. Fold the dough over on its self. Repeat until it becomes smooth and elastic.
- Put a little EVOO into your mixing bowl and place your dough back in the bowl rolling it around in the EVOO to coat. Then cover with a wet towel or plastic wrap.
- Let the dough rise in a warm, draft free place for 3+ hours (you can even leave it over night or while you are at work this will give it a nice sour dough flavor).
- Deflate the dough with your fist by pushing in the middle then allow to rest for 30min.
- Shape your loaves. You can make 2 smaller loaves or one big. You can use a bread pan or shape on a stone or baking sheet that you have sprinkled with corn meal. (I love my baking stone and highly recommend getting one.)
- Let the loaves "proof" by allowing them to rise a little after you have shaped them: 30+min
- Heat your oven to 450F
- Bake at 450F for about 20min the loaves will look golden.
- Reduce heat to 400F and bake for 20 more minutes.
- Allow 15min to cool.
- Taste!

Welcome Home Oatmeal-Chocolate Chip Cookies

I think that after a long weekend alone on the road the hubby deserves a cookie! So some surprise - welcome home baking is in order. Really I will take any excuse to bake. Oatmeal - chocolate chip are my specialty. For some reason everything that I bake tends toward being extra large, my cookies are no exception, but really what is so bad about an oversized chocolate chip cookie! Thomas was pleasantly surprised, the only problem was not eating them all before he got here.

My Marinara Sauce

I started making my own marinara sauce the first summer we had a garden and ended up with so many tomatoes we did not know what to do. This recipe continues to evolve over time, mostly because I never write it down, a habit I am slowly trying to break. So here goes my first attempt at documenting something that I create. I think that sauces need to be flavored slowly as you go to fit your flavor preferences.

- 1.5 pounds of ripe tomatoes (roasted)
- 2 Tbsp minced garlic
- 1 large yellow onion
- 1/4 Cup dry white wine
- 2 Tbsp soft garlic cheese spread
- 2 tsp crushed red pepper
- 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp salt
- Handful of chopped fresh Basil

Roasting the tomatoes:
Preheat oven to 420. Place the tomatoes in a baking dish with the stems cut out. Heavily drizzle the tomatoes with EVOO. Bake for about 40-45min. Remove from the oven and pour a little of the tomato water out of the baking dish.

The Sauce:
- There are several ways to liquify your roasted tomatoes. You can use a food processor, a blender, or one of my personal favorites a submersion blender. After you have reduced the tomatoes to the consistency and texture that you like add them to a large pot over low heat.
- In a small skillet simmer the onions in EVOO until they are transparent then add the garlic and crushed red pepper. Allow the garlic to cook for about 1min then add the white wine to deglaze the skillet. Let sit for a couple of minutes to simmer and reduce.
- Pour the contents of the skillet into the pot with the tomatoes. Add the rest of the ingredients (salt, balsamic vinegar, basil, and cheese) and now start to taste and adjust. I usually add more garlic and hot peppers from the garden if we have them. Stir and allow to sit over heat for a little bit for the flavors marry. Hopefully I remembered everything, let me know what you think. Bon apetit!

Spring for WNC

After what seemed like a never ending winter, spring has finally hit the mountains of western North Carolina. I love this time of year. The smell of the air, playing outside in the sun, the fresh flowers and mostly the beginning of gardening season! I am trying not to "count my chickens before they hatch" but I have already planned several summer menus using veggies from my own yard and the local farmer's markets. Today Barley (the big white dog) and I dug in the compost finding beautiful rich soil and come of the biggest worms I have ever seen. Then I made some pasta sauce using my last can of tomatoes from last summer. It is going to be a fantastic spring and summer: food, friends and many outside adventures!

For the Love of Food

I love food. I am not so much into quantity but quality. Exploring local food options has become an obsession of mine. Any time we are planning a trip I immediately research the food scene of our destination. So for my first post I want to share one of my all time favorite places to eat. It happens to be in my home town, lucky me. Guadalupe Cafe in Sylva, NC is a tapas and wine restaurant (with an excellent beer selection) featuring Caribbean influenced menu. One of the things that I love the most about this local eatery is that they understand how important it is to support the local community by way of buying from local farmers, including delicious local goat cheese, as well as featuring local artists around the cafe. My favorite is the build your own burrito. Mine is: greens, goat cheese and avocado. Yes, always the same, I just love it so much. Next time you are exploring the beautiful mountains of western NC you should stop by. Bon appetit!