Blueberry Elderberry Pie


We have been making an attempt to use up some of last Summer’s frozen bounty.  Even though the vegetables and fruits are frozen and well preserved–fresh from the garden–they do not last forever. Discovering a bit of a frozen blueberry stash, we’ve been having pancakes, smoothies, and sharing them with the chickens (the hens all time favorite treats are blueberries and cherries), but we couldn’t help but create a delicious pie too!

This pie is a combination of two somewhat tart berries–blueberries and elderberries and they make a simply scrumptious duo…

Blueberry Elderberry Pie

2 1/2 cups thawed, frozen blueberries (or fresh)

1 cup thawed, frozen blue elderberries (or fresh)

1/4 cup organic all purpose flour

3/4 cup sugar–white or brown

1 -2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon  ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon powdered ginger

1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

pinch of sea salt


enough pie dough for a double-crust pie


Combine berries, flour, sugar, lemon juice, seasonings and salt and toss together–well, but carefully so you don’t crush the berries. Prepare pie dough and divide in half.  Roll out one half to fit pie tin. Fill bottom crust with berry mixture and dollop with 1-2 Tablespoons butter, in pieces. Roll out remaining half of pie dough. Top berries with crust–round, spiral or lattice. Place pie on baking sheet (to catch any spills) and bake in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes to an hour–until crust is lightly brown and berries are bubbly. Allow to cool before serving.

Amazing Applesauce Cake


From the cinnamon-y apple-y smell while the cake is baking, to the spicy, sweet taste, applesauce cake is one of our very favorites! Like many of our favorite good ‘ole recipes, we’ve adapted it to make it a bit healthier and to add guaranteed wholesome ingredients…

Amazing Applesauce Cake

2 2/3 cup organic, all purpose flour

2 cups brown sugar, packed

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoon organic sea salt

1 1/2 teaspoons Raggedy Hen Farm Baking Spice Blend

1/2 cup butter, softened

1/2 cup water

1 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce*

2 fresh eggs

1/2 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)

1 cup raisins, chopped (optional)

*We use our home-canned applesauce, but you can use your favorite–chunky is best!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease and flour one rectangle 13X9X2 inch pan or two round or square layer pans (8-9 inches). Measure flour by dip-level-our method and add flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spice blend to a large mixing bowl. Stir dry ingredients together until well-blended.  Add butter, water and applesauce and mix for 2 minutes or so until well blended and smooth. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add eggs. Beat 2 more minutes, scraping the bowl to keep things well incorporated. Finally, stir in optional walnuts and raisins by hand and pour into prepared pans.

Bake 35 to 45 minutes until knife or toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Cool in pans before turning out on racks.  Frost with cream cheese or other frosting or dust with powdered sugar (our favorite!)

Wendy’s Great Grandma Della’s Persimmon Pudding

DSCN8107While we live in the Pacific Northwest now, both Teri and Kori have lived in various parts of the U.S. (and beyond, in Teri’s case). One of Kori’s oldest and dearest friends lives in the heartland of the Midwest (Indiana) where they met when their now-grown kids were starting preschool! This recipe comes from Wendy’s family treasures and we are so grateful she shared it with us; it inspired us to head out on a frosty November day to see what we could do with our persimmon tree!

Harvesting Persimmons…


Every year, we promise ourselves that we are going to learn more about what to do with the gorgeous little orange fruits that grow on our persimmon tree. The fact is that they are ripe long after we’ve put the garden to bed and they grow so high up on the thin branches, it is a bit daunting to figure out how to harvest.  The squirrels love them, as do the chickens, and our honeybees romped in their blossoms this past mid-spring, but we decided this year we’d make them into people food too!

Since persimmons are a big deal in the mid-West, Wendy was a good source of recipes and lore. Wendy suggested spreading a tarp down on the ground and then shaking the tree so the ripe fruit would drop.  Well, our tree is too thick and sturdy to really shake, so we used a long-handled rake to reach up and shake the branches until the fruit fell…


With quite the sloppy plop! We had to fend off the chickens who thought surely these tasty morsels were all for them as we gathered them up in a colander.  

Making the Pulp…


We took the colander full of smushy persimmons in and washed it well, removing stems and twigs and pressed it through a sieve. This took a little while, but we ended up with this wonderful, heady-scented orange pulp and we were finally ready to prepare the recipe…

Great Grandma Della’s Persimmon Pudding

2 cups persimmon pulp

1 1/2 cup sugar (we used brown sugar)

1 1/2 cup half-and-half

2 cups all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoon Raggedy Hen Farm Baking Spice Blend OR

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/8 teaspoon cloves, 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 eggs, slightly beaten

2 Tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix pulp, sugar, cream, and eggs.  Sift dry ingredients and add.  Melt butter and add this last.  Mix well and pour into a lightly buttered baking dish or cake pan…


Bake for 45 minutes to an hour.  This makes a super moist, dense, old-fashioned “pudding” which is like a very dense cake.  Once cooled it can be cut into squares and served with ice cream or whipped cream, if desired.


And, in the end, the chickens got the remaining smushy pulp after all!


J-J-J-J Jelly Roll!

Another easy, delicious, and deceptively impressive dessert. It is a wonderful way to incorporate delicious fruit jam into your baking and a great recipe to have in your collection. Join Kori in the kitchen at Raggedy Hen Farm and check out all our delicious fruit jam offerings in the Raggedy Hen Farm store.

Pumpkin Raisin Spice Cookies


Necessity really is the Mother of Invention. Faced with a goodly amount of recently cooked and mashed fresh pumpkin, and craving something warm and sweet, we created this perfect November cookie recipe. These cookies are moist with a nice amount of spice and the addition of sweet raisins and organic whole oats  They would be amazing with dried cranberries or with a handful of chopped nuts.  This is one of those easily-customize-able recipes of which we are so fond!

Pumpkin Raisin Spice Cookies

1 stick softened butter

1 cup brown sugar (could be 1/2 cup brown and 1/2 cup white, if you’d like)

1 egg

1 cup cooked, pureed pumpkin

2 cups unbleached, all purpose flour

1/2 cup whole oats

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

2 teaspoons Raggedy Hen Farm Baking Spice Blend (or 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon cloves, 1/2 teaspoon ginger)

1 cup raisins

1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and lightly grease cookie/baking sheet. Cream the butter and add the sugar.  Beat until light and well incorporated.  Stir in the egg and the pumpkin.  Mix together the flour, oats, baking soda, salt and spices and add this to the pumpkin mixture.  Beat well and then stir in raisins and nuts.  Drop by spoonfuls onto baking sheet and bake for 6-8 minutes or until puffy and lightly browned.  Remove and cool on racks.

This makes about 3 dozen 2-inch cookies.

Bringing Fruitcake Back


Fruit Cake has had its share of bad press–some of it very well deserved!  Those 2-ton loaves that come stuffed in cans and sold on the cheap have given this holiday season classic a seriously bad name.  A few years ago, we decided to try our hand at making good, old-fashioned fruitcake~fresh, homemade, full of delicious ingredients, and soaked in brandy.  It was such a hit, we’ve been making it ever since.  We started with an old recipe from Teri’s mother (a copy of a blurry carbon copy no less) and Kori has upgraded and adapted it until we have, what we think is the yummiest, melt-in-your-mouth, almost-good-for-you version on the planet!

We make this huge batch the week of Halloween and then let it age and mellow (see below.)  It is ready to start eating at Thanksgiving and has been known to last nearly a year (soaked in enough brandy!)


2 pounds mixed candied fruit

1 pound candied cherries

4 cups shelled pecans, chopped (1/2 cup – 1 cup halves reserved for decorating)

1/2 pound chopped, dried figs

1-2 cups dried cranberries

2 pounds raisins

1 pound golden raisins

1 pound dates (chopped, if you can get them)

1 cup brandy or fruit juice (or blackberry wine)

4 1/2 cups all purpose flour

3 Tablespoons Raggedy Hen Farm Baking Spice Blend (or 1 Tablespoons cinnamon, 1 teaspoon each: cloves, allspice, nutmeg)

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 cup butter

2 cups brown sugar, packed

8 eggs (we use our fresh backyard eggs)

1 cup fruit jam–favorite flavor

2/4 cup molasses

1/2 cup cherry or blackberry wine, brandy or grape juice

2 teaspoons vanilla

The night before mixing (or early in the morning), put together the mixed fruit, 3/4 pound cherries (save some for decoration), pecans, figs, raisins, dates, cranberries. Chop nuts, if needed and if not using chopped dates, snip dates with kitchen shears (you might need to dip in hot water periodically to prevent stickiness).  Mix all the fruits well in a very large bowl.  Add 1 cup brandy or fruit juice and stir in.  Cover with plastic wrap and let stand overnight or for several hours.

Mix, sift together flour, spices, baking powder, and soda.  Add about 2 cups of this flour mixture to the soaking fruits and stir in.  You will want to have the flour-fruit mixture in a very large bowl since this is where all the final mixing and blending will take place.

Cream butter, add brown sugar gradually and beat until light and fluffy.  Beat in eggs 2 at a time.  beat in fruit jam and molasses. Add the remaining dry ingredients to this alternatively with the 1/2 cup of wine, brandy or juice.  Finally, stir in vanilla.

Now, pour the well-combined batter over the floured fruits and mix thoroughly. We usually do this with our clean hands as it is such a bit lot! Grease your loaf pans well (large, small, mini, or a combination). Line with wax paper, parchment or foil and grease the inside again.  Fill pans almost level with the top (they will rise a little, but not too much).  Bake in a 275 degree oven for 1 1/2 hours with a cake pan of hot water on the bottom rack of the oven.

Once done, take out and cool in pans for about a half hour.  At this point, we generally sprinkle with a little more brandy before removing from the pan.  Remove from pan, peel off paper and put on rack to cool.  Once cool, sprinkle with some more brandy or fruit juice and then wrap each loaf in wax paper and foil.  Put in a cool, dry place to age.  After about a week or two, unwrap and sprinkle with a bit more brandy or juice.  Rewrap and let age and mellow some more.  We generally let these mellow for about a month before we start eating and sharing!