Posts Tagged ‘Driftless region of Wisconsin’

We’re Your Sherpa for Hiking Trails in Wisconsin!

Monday, July 8th, 2013

In the southern part of the state, The Roth House B&B of Soldiers Grove says there are lots of great opportunities for hiking just a short distance from the inn.  They include:  Hogback Prairie, Kickapoo Valley Reserve, and Pikes Peak State Park. All three of these provide unique opportunities to explore the Driftless Region.  Cameo Rose Victorian Inn in Belleville boasts 4 miles of beautifully groomed hiking trails right on their 120 acre wooded property.  They also have a managed forest (Gary eliminates all invasive species, prunes lower tree branches, cleans up all poison ivy, etc.) and maintains wide, mowed paths throughout the meandering hillsides complete with unique rock formations, a wide assortment of colorful songbirds, wild turkeys, hawks (even an eagle or two) and lots of deer and other wildlife. Innkeeper Donna Hofmann of Parkview B&B in Reedsburg puts in another vote for can’t-miss-hiking at famous Devil’s Lake State Park and often suggests it to enthusiastic guests. Of course, it has the best rock climbing this side of the Rocky Mountains!  Continuing east, we come to Pedal’rs Inn, Wales in the Lake Country/ Kettle Moraine area. Minutes away is Lapham Peak State Park part of the Ice Age Trail. The Ice Age Trail connects with the Glacial Drumlin Trail that will bring you right to the doorstep of Pedal’rs Inn. Further to the south is the Southern Kettle Moraine with more trails to enjoy the landforms created by during the Ice Age.  Last but not certainly not least, Artesian House in Bayfield is excited to have guests experience the brand new park called Salmo Lake Walk Trail that is just across the road from Artesian House.  The new park has a bridge, boardwalk/trail down to a Lake Superior beach for a nice stroll for after breakfast.  There is a hiking trail across Hatchery Road close to Artesian House’s driveway. For the perfect marriage between hiking and seeing the timeless city of Bayfield, cross Rt. 13 to Port Superior Road and head north along the water, you will pick up the Brownstone Trail that will take you into downtown Bayfield.  Bayfield Chamber of Commerce has put together a great list of trails along Lake Superior that will definitely make for an experience worth the drive north!

Glacial Drumlin Trail

Glacial Drumlin Trail

Kickapoo Valley Reserve

Kickapoo Valley Reserve

You Can Never Have Too Many Tomato Recipes

Tuesday, August 21st, 2012

Some of us are tomato snobs – we only eat fresh tomatoes grown in our gardens or sourced from local farms.  And once you start eating this way, there’s no going back.  If your tomato plants are heavy with sun ripened Roma, Wisconsin 55 and Better Boy varieties, then you’ll want to try this tomato recipe from the Cream Pitcher B&B in Blue River, Wisconsin’s Southwest “Driftless” area.

Heirloom Tomato Pie

1 cup flour

¾ cup yellow cornmeal

¾ tsp salt

1 stick cold, unsalted butter cheese (cut into ½-inch pieces)

¾ cup, plus 3 Tbsp shredded Manchego cheese

4 Tbsp ice water

dried beans (as weights)

1 tsp chopped fresh thyme

Filling

2 Tbsp olive oil, divided

1 large onion, thinly sliced

2¼ lbs. mixed heirloom tomatoes

¾ cup shredded mozzarella

¼ cup mayonnaise

3 Tbsp breadcrumbs

3 Tbsp chopped fresh chives

3 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley

1 tsp chopped fresh thyme

kosher salt

freshly  ground pepper

 

Pulse the flour, cornmeal and salt in a food processor to combine. Add the butter and 3 tablespoons Manchego. Pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal with pea-size bits of butter. Drizzle in 4 tablespoons of ice water and pulse until the dough comes together. Add 1 more tablespoon ice water if necessary. Turn out onto a sheet of plastic wrap and pat into a disk. Wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 45 minutes.

Put the dough between 2 sheets of parchment paper and roll into a 13-inch round. Transfer the dough to a 9½-inch deep-dish pie plate. Fold the overhang under itself and crimp the edges. Pierce the bottom of the crust all over with a fork. Refrigerate until firm, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350°F. Line the crust with foil, then fill with dried beans. Bake until the edges are golden, about 20 minutes. Remove the foil and beans and continue baking until golden all over, 10–15 more minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool.

For the filling: Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring until golden, about 15 minutes. Let cool. Meanwhile, thinly slice the tomatoes. Toss with 1 teaspoon kosher salt in a colander. Let drain about 30 minutes, gently tossing occasionally.

Increase oven temperature to 375°F. Combine the remaining ¾ cup Manchego, mozzarella, mayonnaise, breadcrumbs, 2 tablespoons each chives and parsley, thyme, ¼ teaspoon each kosher salt and pepper and the sautéed onion in a bowl. Spread in the crust. Arrange the tomatoes on top. Drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with pepper. Bake until the tomatoes are browned, about 50 minutes. Top with remaining 1 tablespoon each chives and parsley.

 

A ‘long and winding road’ leads you to the Cream Pitcher B&B, in Blue River. Situated among the hills in Richland County (southwest Wisconsin), this unglaciated area offers awesome beauty as well as outdoor activities in every season. There are more than 3 miles of hiking trails through the 100 acres of woodland. Watch deer, turkeys and other wildlife; see and hear many species of birds. Enjoy the creek that flows close by…and the warm hospitality of innkeepers Diane & Vern.