Archive for March, 2018

Oh My, Morel Mushrooms!

Friday, March 16th, 2018

 

Pretty? Maybe not, but morel mushrooms sure are delicious and should be incorporated into your breakfast recipes.

Morel mushroom hunting in Wisconsin in the spring is like a secret society, with mushroom aficionados reluctant to share their hunting spots. However, our innkeepers are always happy to share their recipes, and so we reached out to our members for their favorite morel mushroom recipes.

If you’ve never tasted a morel mushroom, you’re in for a treat with this recipe for Eggs Benedict with Morel Mushrooms and Asparagus from Sweet Autumn Inn in Lake Mills.

Ingredients:
1 T. Olive oil
1 Large shallot, finely diced
1 Clove garlic, finely diced
1/2 t. fresh thyme, chopped
1 T butter
8 oz. morel mushrooms, halved or quartered depending on size
1/4 C white wine or broth
1/2 C heavy cream
Salt & pepper to taste
12 spears asparagus, lightly sauteed or blanched
4 poached eggs
4 slices of multi grain bread, lightly toasted

Directions:
Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat, add the shallot and cook until tender, about 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and thyme and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the butter and let it melt. Add the mushrooms and cook until they release their moisture, about 3-5 minutes. Add the wind or broth, deglaze the pan and cook for 2 minutes. Add the cream and simmer until it thickens, about 2-3 minutes and reduce the heat to low. Poach the eggs in your favorite method.

To Plate:
Place piece of toast on the plate, top with the asparagus, poached eggs and creamy mushroom sauce.
This recipe will make enough to serve four.

Not a morel mushroom hunter? You could also try this recipe for Oven Baked Mushrooms from Pedal’rs Inn in Wales.

An open faced breakfast sandwich on a grilled ciabatta roll with roasted bacon, poached egg topped with chocolate bacon gravy and a side of oven roasted mushrooms from Pedal’rs Inn.

Ingredients:
2 T of unsalted butter
16 oz of sliced porcini mushrooms
2 tsp Of Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp Fresh ground black pepper
1 T of flour
1/4 cup sour cream
Shredded Swiss cheese

Directions:
Preheat oven 325. In a sauté pan, melt butter on medium high heat. When butter begins to sizzle place mushrooms in pan. Sauté mushrooms until edges start to brown. Do not let them go until all the juice rendered. Stir in Worcestershire sauce and black pepper. Remove from heat and sprinkle with flour. Stir mushrooms covering with flour. Return to medium heat and add in sour cream being sure to pull in pan scrapings. Pour into individual tart pans or 8×8 oven safe serving dish. Top with Swiss cheese and place in oven for 20 minutes or until cheese is melted. Serve warm. Serves 4.

Added Tip: When traveling to Wisconsin B&Bs in the spring, ask the innkeeper about local farmers’ markets, where you may be able to snag some morels, plus other spring favorites like asparagus and rhubarb. You’ll never leave empty-handed at the state’s largest farmers’ market which happens every Saturday on the Capitol Square in Madison. Who knows, you might even run into innkeepers from The Buckingham Inn, The Livingston Inn,  and Hotel Ruby Marie when you’re there!

 

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Favorite Spring Cleaning Hacks Innkeepers Use

Wednesday, March 14th, 2018

 

As you’d expect, B&B owners know a thing or two about cleaning. So we asked our member innkeepers for their favorite hacks for sprucing up and refreshing around the home. It’s our ode to spring cleaning.

Innkeepers wear a lot of hats – host, chef, concierge, gardener, bookkeeper – but around spring cleaning time, the title that may be worn a bit more than the others is that of housekeeper. Let’s just say they are wizards at spring cleaning. Here are some creative ways to tackle this annual ritual straight from the pros.

1. “You know when your sandstone coasters get those marks from your coffee mugs or wine glasses that just wont wash off?  You feel like you should get rid of those coasters that have protected your fine furniture.  But… you love your coasters.  Well, simply pour a bit of hydrogen peroxide on them and the stains rinse right out! Wa La!”

 

2. “If you want to remove carpet stains (and anything off a mattress as well), try Hydrogen Peroxide and Blue Dawn Dish Soap mixed together. Use 1 part Dawn Dishwashing Liquid (the original blue kind), 2 parts Hydrogen Peroxide, mix together and pour directly on the stain.”

 

3. “To take years of paint off of things like hinges and doorknobs: Line a crockpot with a zip lock bag and put them in with water. Turn it on low and let it soak for an hour. When you take them out, the paint just peels off! So much easier than scraping and no chemicals!”

 

4. “There is a product from Shaklee called Scour Off Paste. I have used the product on my tempered glass on my wood burning stove. Over the years, I have tried everything to get the soot off that glass from the fire and nothing worked. This works easily, quickly, and completely. It also works to remove stains other cleansers can’t and is great for cleaning tubs, ovens, sinks, and tiles too.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. “Use a lemon piece to scrub your wooden cutting boards: Cut a lemon in half, squeeze some of the juice over the board, pour some salt over the board and use the lemon to scrub!”

 

6. “When dusting your ceiling fan just put an old pillowcase over each blade and slide it off. This will trap the dirt instead of just moving it around.”

 

7. “You know those fuzzy seeds from trees like cottonwoods and plants like dandelions that float around and attach themselves to your screens? De-fuzz your screen door and window screens by running a lint roller over each side!”

 

8. “For small stains and water marks on microfiber couches, try a white sponge, white bristle brush, rubbing alcohol, and a spray bottle. Saturate the stains on the couch by spraying with rubbing alcohol and scrub, scrub, scrub with that sponge. Once it dries, you’ll notice it feels hard. That’s what the bristle brush is for! Small circular motions with the brush will fluff up the couch like new again.”

 

Happy cleaning!

 

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Hygge Makes Us Happy

Wednesday, March 7th, 2018

 

Hygge is hot right now. It’s a Danish word for cozy, comfortable and content, and it’s showing up in home décor and travel trends. See how some Wisconsin B&Bs are interpreting the simple pleasures of hygge.

If Pinterest is any indication of trends – and it is – hygge is big. How to hygge, you ask? Create a cozy atmosphere, be present in the moment, partake of simple pleasures, slow down, be thankful, embrace harmony, and carve out time and space for friends. Count us in!

For us, this Danish word, pronounced “hue-guh”, really boils down to “contentment.” And here are inns that have been serving up hygge long before it became a thing:

 

Real tea and coffee: Lindsay House B&B, Manawa

French pressed coffee, comfort, and a good book on the porch at Lindsay House B&B

 

Candles at breakfast: Garden Gate B&B, Sturgeon Bay

Candlelight and pleasant conversation await you with breakfast at Garden Gate B&B

 

Freshly baked pastries: The Livingston Inn, Madison

This homemade pistachio breakfast ring is just one of many delicious pastries from The Livingston Inn

 

A sprig or two of fresh flowers from the garden: Red Forest B&B, Two Rivers

Enjoy your refreshments outdoors in the beautiful garden area at Red Forest B&B

 

Less-is-more home décor: At The Lake House, Lake Geneva

At The Lake House offers modern simplicity to feel right at home

 

A reading sanctuary: Castle La Crosse B&B, La Crosse

Pick out a book and set yourself up in a quiet spot by the window at the Castle La Crosse B&B library

 

Conversation nooks: 1810 Emerson House B&B, Beloit

A quiet corner for your enjoyment at 1810 Emerson House

 

Crackling fireplace: Honeybee Inn B&B, Horicon

Bask in the warmth of the fireplace in the Queen Bee Victorian room at the Honeybee Inn

 

Hiking path with picnic spots: Lake Orchard Farm Retreat, Sheboygan

Rolling fields, natural woods, fruit orchards and a Lake Michigan view greet you on the trails around Lake Orchard Farm Retreat

 

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