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Charcuterie Boards Of Westchester County

Charcuterie boards are not new to the party and appetizer scene. However, they have recently seen a surge in popularity. Not only are they visually appealing, but the combinations of the components on the boards are almost limitless. I discovered that Westchester County has several local, small businesses that can create charcuterie boards for you. Today’s charcuterie boards consist of much more than meats and cheeses. These small businesses rise to the occasion; offering nuts, fruit, olives and more. Each can customize a board that fits your needs. Some even create dessert and hot cocoa charcuterie! Check out and support these Charcuterie Board small businesses in Westchester County.

All Aboard

All Aboard, started by Francesca Martilotta, has been in business for two months. She creates boards for all kinds of events, holidays and special occasions. During the winter, All Aboard offered a s’mores box that came completed with a bonfire from City Bonfires! She is currently creating seasonal holiday sweet treat boards. There is a St. Patrick’s Day Board and will be featuring an Easter board soon.

All Aboard prides themselves on working with local businesses. Francesca features delicious and creative treats from Westchester County businesses. She takes pride in customizing boards to her client’s interests.

Location: All Aboard is located in Mamaroneck. They offer free delivery within a 5 mile radius.

Price: Holiday boards start at $100 and traditional savory charcuterie boards start at $125. Everything comes on boards.

How to Order: Orders are taken via Direct Message on Instagram.

Boards By Bean

Photo c/o Boards By Bean

Boards By Bean is a new business that just began in February of 2021. Christina Scumaci enjoyed making charcuterie boards for small gatherings. After numerous friends and family encouraged her to start a side business, she finally took the plunge and started Boards By Bean. She loves taking a variety of foods and making them come to life on one board.

Photo c/o Boards By Bean

Christina makes holiday themed boxes and boards and is currently working on adding brunch boards and dessert boxes to her menu.

Photo c/o Boards By Bean

Location: Boards By Bean is based in Mount Kisco. Pick ups are preferred but she does deliver.

Photo c/o Boards By Bean

Price: Prices range from $25 to $85 and can feed between 1 – 12 people depending on the board you choose. Every board or box includes meats, cheeses, nuts, assorted fruits and accompaniments. However, she is happy to customize any type of board to fit your needs.

How to order: Orders can be made via Direct Message on Instagram.

Boxed And Board

Photo c/o Boxed and Board

Boxed and Board was launched by Kayleigh in January 2021. Besides traditional meat and cheese charcuterie boards, Boxed and Board also has a signature waffle brunch box. They make all kinds of boards for holidays, birthdays or even an intimate get together. Kayleigh can make vegetarian boards upon request.

Photo c/o Boxed and Board

Location: Boxed and Board is located in Somers and offers both pickup and delivery.

Photo c/o Boxed and Board

Price: Charcuterie boards and boxes range from $55 -$150.

How to Order: Orders are taken via Direct Message on Instagram, Facebook or email (kayleigh@boxedandboard.com). A website is coming soon.

Charcutebri

Charcutebri creates custom charcuterie boards for any occasion. Although Briann made her first cheeseboard in 2019 for a Christmas Eve family gathering, she didn’t officially go into business until June of 2020. As she says, “[It’s] my version of a pandemic baby!”

Briann gets many requests for and happily offers gluten-free and nut-free boards. She enjoys incorporating cheeses that the regular person wouldn’t pick up or might not be familiar with, like Sweet Fire Mango Jack by Kindred Creamery. She also likes to add sweet treats to her board and often partners with local bakers and other small businesses. In the past she’s worked with G’POP SHOP, Sweets By Cari and Sweets By Smooches.

Location: Briann is located in Yorktown Heights but also operates out of Middletown, New York for those living in/near Orange County New York. She likes to make it easy for everyone and offers pick up and delivery.

Price: Single boxes start at $20. Briann is happy to customize any board and will work with you to create something for your particular needs and budget.

How to Order: Orders are taken via DM on Instagram or email (charcutebri@gmail.com).

Charcuterie Collection

Laura started Charcuterie Collection in May of 2020. She creates charcuterie gift boxes and platters for any occasion. Laura is able to accommodate all dietary restrictions. Besides Chef’s selections of meat and cheese, Charcuterie Collection gift boxes include different combinations of jams, honey, olives, fresh and dried fruit, crackers, mixed nuts and chocolates. They also provide a separate packet with utensils like bamboo tongs, wooden picks, jam spreaders and more.

Charcuterie Collection loves the holidays and is currently offering special Valentine themed boxes. They can personalize boxes with logos for corporate events and customize the contents of their boxes. They also do residential setups and love using kitchen islands for displays. Please note that Charcuterie Collection does not use wooden boards. The charcuterie is packaged in gift boxes.

Location: Charcuterie Collection is online based and serves Westchester County. There is a delivery team that hand delivers all orders.

Price: The “Classic Meats and Cheese” line comes in three sizes, Small through Large and starts at $45.

How to Order: Orders are taken via the website.

The Cheese Enthusiast

Photo c/o The Cheese Enthusiast

The Cheese Enthusiast was started in August 2020 by Ali Weinig. The company prides itself on supporting local, “by serving rare and luxury cheeses from local farms.”

The Cheese Enthusiast curates cheese boards for all occasions. All of the cheese, meat, produce, jam, honey and breads used on their boards are locally sourced from local farms and vendors. They make vegetarian and even dairy-free boards.

Location: The Cheese Enthusiast serves Westchester County and and the surrounding areas. They usually deliver their cheese boards, but there is a pickup option in Pleasantville.

Price: Price varies based on the size of the board, with individual boards starting at $25 to $95 for extra large boards that serve 10-12. If you need a larger board for a catered event, they can do that as well.

How to Order: Orders are taken through their website, by emailing (info@thecheeseenthusiast.com) or via DM on Instagram.

The Cheesy Charcuterie

Photo c/o The Cheesy Charcuterie

The Cheesy Charcuterie was started in November 2020 by Michelle Romano. Born into a large Italian American family, Sunday dinners have always been routine. Michelle always loves starting off these dinners with her favorite course: a cheese and charcuterie plate. As she noted, “with the last name Romano, how can I not be a lover of cheese and expand this delicious fun?” Michelle works full time as journalist for News 12. The Cheesy Charcuterie has become her passion project turned side business.

Photo c/o The Cheesy Charcuterie

To make the perfect bite, Michelle likes to add cheese accompaniments and a wine pairing to custom orders. Each box is decorated in bright color palettes and, “wrapped with love.”

Photo c/o The Cheesy Charcuterie

She is currently taking orders for Valentine’s Day but she also creates orders for all occasions: date night, birthdays, bridal/baby showers, rehearsal dinners, holidays or, “any excuse to get together and make memories while eating cheese!”

Photo c/o The Cheesy Charcuterie

Location: The Cheesy Charcuterie serves lower Westchester County and Long Island. Orders can be picked up or delivered.

Price: Price varies per order based on cheese selection and size of box/platter. Reach out directly to Michelle to work on a customized box for your budget and needs.

How to Order: Orders are taken via DM on Instagram or via email (thecheesycharcuterie@gmail.com).

Christina’s Charcuterie

Photo c/o Christina’s Charcuterie

Christina started Christina’s Charcuterie in the summer of 2020. She is a big wine and cheese lover and has always had a passion for food styling and entertaining. After creating a themed board for the Fourth of July for a family gathering, she decided to take her hobby to the next level and Christina’s Charcuterie was launched.

Christina’s Charcuterie boards contain an array of gourmet cheeses, cured meat, fresh fruit, nuts, dried fruit, chocolate, honey, fig spread, and garnish. Although crackers are not included in the board, Christina assures, “you will be receiving quality food as opposed to “fillers.”” Boards can be customized for any special occasion. Christina loves adding special touches wherever possible and recently put together a fun board for a Casamigos and bourbon themed birthday. She can also accommodate boards for dietary needs, including vegetarian boards.

Photo c/o Christina’s Charcuterie

Location: Christina’s Charcuterie is based out of Westchester County, NY. Pickup or delivery within the tri-state area is available for an additional fee.

Price: Charcuterie boxes range in price from $35 to $120. Christina can make grazing tables and can customize options at varying prices.

How to Order: Orders are taken via the website or via email (Christinascharcuterie@gmail.com)

Gather + Graze

Photo c/o Gather + Graze

Tina Tompkins started Gather + Graze just before Thanksgiving of 2020. Although the idea had been in the works for the past year, it finally came together. She wants to help take the stress out of entertaining by creating delicious and impressive-looking boards for your guests.

Photo c/o Gather + Graze

Gather + Graze boards are curated specifically for your gathering and includes charcuterie, cheese, crackers and accompaniments. Tina can create vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free boards upon request. She also does holiday themed boards, dessert boards, wedding boards, crudités and more. She currently has a $45 Sunday football box and a Heartcuterie special for Valentine’s Day. A wine pairing option is available for boards at an additional cost.

Photo c/o Gather + Graze

Location: Gather +Graze is based in White Plains but Tina delivers to Westchester for free.

Price: Boards that can feed 2-4 people start at $60 and can be customized from there.

How to Order: Orders are taken through the website.

graze New York

Founded in 2017 by Shari, graze New York is one of the first Westchester County charcuterie board companies. They are also a 2019 Best of Westchester winner.

Besides traditional charcuterie boards, graze New York creates specialty items like seasonal goodie bags and graze boxes. They can also create vegetarian boards and offer gluten free options. They love to work with seasonal ingredients, so current boards may have passion fruit, blood oranges and/or goose berries for pops of color.

Location: graze NY is located Bedford. They offer both pick up and delivery throughout Westchester County, NYC and the surrounding areas.

Price: Prices start at $25 for individual graze boxes and up to $185 for 2 feet long large boards. However, Shari and her team love to work with clients to customize boards.

How to Order: Orders can be made via the graze New York website, Direct Message on Instagram or by email (Shari@grazenewyork.com).

Gusto Goodies

Photo c/o Gusto Goodies

Gusto Goodies was started by Laureen and her fiancé Jonathan in December 2020, right before the holiday season.

Gusto Goodies charcuterie boards come with multiple types of meat and cheese so customers can be introduced to new varieties. They can make vegetarian or vegan boards and can accommodate almost any diet or preference upon request. They also offer dessert boards. To help personalize boards, they almost always have letter-shaped cheese cutouts featuring a name or word. They can also add flowers, notes and other customizable features.

Location: Gusto Goodies is based in Ossining. They deliver but also offer pickup.

Price: Boards are currently priced from $15-$90, depending on the size.

How to Order: Orders are taken via DM on Instagram.

I’ve Got The Board

Photo c/o of I’ve Got The Board

Amanda Welch of I’ve Got The Board, has been making charcuterie boards for approximately two years. However, she only turned it into a local small business this past November. She works a full time job and creates charcuterie boards as, “a creative escape to make sure I don’t lose that in my more technical world at work.”

Photo c/o of I’ve Got The Board

Amanda can make vegetarian boards (pictured above) as well as nut and gluten-free boards to accommodate all diets. She enjoys playing with different fillers for her boards depending on the occasion. For example, she may use pink covered chocolate items for a girl birthday or baby shower themed board or heart shaped items for Valentine’s Day.

And speaking of Valentine’s Day, if you’d like to order for that weekend she has some time slots available.

Location: I’ve Got The Board is based in Stamford, CT but serves both Westchester and Fairfield County. Pickup is available, but if you live within 15 miles of Stamford, delivery is included in the price of the boards.

Price: Most boards start at $65 but everything is completely customizable depending on her client’s needs. With a quick consultation, she can create a board that fits your size and budget.

How to Order: Orders are currently taken via DM on Instagram or email (ivegottheboard@gmail.com).

Overboard Grazing

Photo c/o Overboard Grazing

Overboard Grazing launched at the end of February 2021 by Lindsay Forschner. During COVID, Lindsay enjoyed making charcuterie boards as a hobby. She only recently decided to turn it into a business. Her company believes, “it’s always necessary to go overboard.”

Photo c/o Overboard Grazing

Lindsay likes to combine sweet and salty items on her boards. She also likes to make sure there are a variety of textures and colors, but ultimately taste is her priority. Frequent items on her board included chocolate covered pretzels, a pastry of some sort, cheese, crackers and nuts. She can customize boards based on allergies and strong dislikes.

Photo c/o Overboard Grazing

Location: Overboard Grazing is located in Scarsdale. There is free delivery for Scarsdale orders. Delivery outside of Scarsdale has a small fee.

Photo c/o Overboard Grazing

Price: Prices of boards range from $35 – $250, depending on the size. However, boards can be customized to the client’s needs and wants.

How to Order: Orders can be placed via Direct Message on Instagram, the website, or by emailing Lindsay at overboardgrazing@gmail.com.

ROC Boards

Photo c/o ROC Boards

ROC Boards was started by Stephanie in May of 2020, “as a way to bring out my creative side in the form of charcuterie….” Her goal is to bring people together to enjoy great conversations while they enjoy her delicious boards.

Photo c/o ROC Boards

Stephanie creates charcuterie boards in all sizes from extra small to large. She also makes brunch boards and dessert boards. She has a list of cheese, meat and accompaniments on her site so clients can customize exactly what they want. ROC Boards is all about supporting local and small businesses. Stephanie uses gourmet nuts on her board from Nuts Nuts, an upstate NY business. Many of the cheeses that she uses on her boards come from local vendors as well, including one of her favorites “Torio” from The Cheese Guy based in Yonkers, NY.

Photo c/o ROC Boards

ROC Boards can accommodate most allergies and dietary restrictions and can create vegetarian, gluten-free, nut free and even vegan boards upon request.

Location: ROC Boards is based in Yorktown Heights but delivers to Westchester and the surrounding areas.

Price: Prices for boards depend on the size. There are four different sized boards, XS to Large. The XS starts at $40 but feeds 2-4 people. Stephanie recently started offering mini “charcuterie boxes” that start at $35.

How to Order: Orders are taken via the order form on the ROC Board website or DM via Instagram or Facebook.

Boards by Soph

Boards by Soph is a local business started by Sophie Dippolito. She graduated from the University of Miami in May 2020. As a way to combine her passions and skills, she turned her hobby of making cheese boards into a small business.

Sophie is currently focusing on school and is only offering boards on select weekends, for holidays and special occasions. Check her Instagram account to stay up-to-date.

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Hot Cocoa Bombs {Where in Westchester County?}

Hot cocoa bombs are the current internet sensation. A hollow ball of chocolate is filled with cocoa mix and marshmallows. When you pour hot milk or water over the ball, it opens up, you stir everything and then enjoy all the chocolatey goodness. It’s fun to watch and a tasty treat!

I’ve researched where in Westchester you can find hot cocoa bombs. But, if you want to enjoy one of these homemade treats, you need to place an order now! I’ve discovered that almost every business requires preordering. The few locations that sell hot cocoa bombs onsite end up selling out very quickly! Due to lack of time, in trying to get this post out, I opted to visit Beascake’s Bakery this weekend. Sadly, when I arrived they were all sold out.

So, get your orders in now, especially if you would like the hot cocoa bombs as gifts for the holidays. As I mentioned, these treats have been VERY popular and are selling like crazy! They make a great stocking stuffer but are also great to enjoy all winter long (the snow hasn’t hit Westchester County YET, but I have a feeling we are in for a loooong winter!).

If you know of a business that should be included on this list, please send me an email!

Auntie Liana’s Baked With Love (Popup Shop at the Jefferson Valley Mall)
650 Lee Boulevard
Yorktown Heights, NY 10598

Auntie Liana’s has a popup shop in the Jefferson Valley Mall. Her hot cocoa bombs flavors include Cocoa, White Cocoa, Peanut Butter, Unicorn, Salted Caramel, Chocolate Mint, White Chocolate Mint, Bailey’s and Red Velvet. You can buy them at the popup shop at the mall or you can contact the business via DM on Instagram or email auntielianas@yahoo.com.

Beascakes Bakery (Armonk)
575 Main Street
Armonk, NY 10504
(914) 273-3612

Beascakes Bakery is selling hot cocoa bombs and their individual sugar cookies on a first come, first served basis. They are not accepting pre-orders on these items.

Photo courtesy of Bradley’s Cafe

Bradley’s Cafe (Larchmont)
2 Chatsworth Ave.
Larchmont, NY 10538
(914) 833-1095

Bradley’s Cafe sells a variety of hot cocoa bombs. Each hot cocoa bomb is $4.75 and comes in flavors like Peppermint Caramel, Milk Chocolate w/Marshmallow, Sea Salt Caramel and Mocha.

Chocolations (Mamaroneck)
607 E. Boston Post Road
Mamaroneck, NY
(914) 777-3600

You can buy cocoa bombs here in singles ($7) or 4 packs ($28). They can be made with milk, dark or white chocolate. You can purchase in-store.

Custom Creations (Rye Brook)

Custom Creations only sells chocolate hot cocoa bombs. Each cocoa bomb is $6. You can order hot cocoa bombs via DM on Instagram.

Photo courtesy of Fleetwood Bakery Shop

Fleetwood Bakery Shop (Mount Vernon)
561 Gramatan Avenue
Mount Vernon, NY 10552
(914) 667-3434

The Fleetwood Bakery sells hot cocoa bombs in Chocolate, Salted Caramel, Peppermint and Maple Pecan. Each cocoa bomb is $6. Individually wrapped cocoa bombs are $7 each. They sell 2 cocoa bombs packed in a box for $15.00 or 4 cocoa bombs in a box for $28.00.

Flour and Sun Bakery (Pleasantville)
19 Washington Avenue
Pleasantville, NY 10570
(914) 495-3232

Hot cocoa bombs need to be ordered at least two days in advance from Flour and Sun Bakery. They sell Classic Hot Cocoa, Peppermint (with pieces of candy cane inside), Salted Caramel and sometimes Strawberry Unicorn. Each cocoa bomb comes individually wrapped and are $5 each.

Flowerbake by Angela (Pelham)
136 Fifth Avenue
Pelham, NY 10803
(914) 632-2253
info@flowerbake.com

Flowerbake by Angela is selling a set of 3 holiday hot chocolate bombs for $18.00. For an additional $5 you can get the hot cocoa bomb packaged in a special ornament case. You can mix and match with a decorated snowflake, Christmas tree or Grinch. Each bomb has “a little special something inside…” Order online and pickup in store. Items can also be shipped at an additional cost.

Heavenly Treats by Rosemarie (Eastchester)

Hot cocoa bombs are sold in singles ($5) and in boxes of four ($20) or six that can be customizable. Choices include milk chocolate, white chocolate, dark chocolate, mint chocolate and white candy mint. Order via Facebook.

Jane Street Sweets (Croton-on-Hudson)

Jane Street Sweets is currently selling a 4 pack hot cocoa bomb box ($20). You can choose from classic hot cocoa, candy cane, gingerbread or cookies-n-cream. Ordering is via email, DM on Facebook or DM on Instagram. There is no pickup – local deliveries are made on Thursdays only (December 10, 17, 24 and 31).

JNA Sweetz (White Plains)

Hot cocoa bombs are $5 each, or $6 with a chocolate spoon. Choices include Swiss Miss and Abuelita hot chocolate. At this time orders are via Instagram DM only.

The Poppery (Mt. Kisco)
255 N. Broadway
Mt. Kisco, NY 10549
(914) 218-8447

The Poppery is selling Grinch, Peppermint, Salted Caramel and Nutella hot cocoa bombs. These sell for $7 each. There is also a 6 pack Chocolate Lovers Hot Cocoa Bomb box that includes 3 Nutella, Marshmallow filled hot cocoa bombs and 3 Salted Caramel, toffee bits and marshmallow filled hot cocoa bombs ($39). For those celebrating Hanukkah this week, you can get a festive blue and white decorated hot cocoa bomb. All hot cocoa bombs need to be preordered on the website.

Queerios Bakery (White Plains)

Christmas hot cocoa bombs are $6. They can be personalized in cursive for an additional $1. Flavors include Swiss Chocolate, Abuelita, Peppermint, Pumpkin Spice and Mocha. They also have a Vegan Peppermint, using vegan chocolate. At this time orders are via Instagram DM only.

Steph’s Sweet Creations (Port Chester)
(914) 565-1101

Steph’s Sweet Creations makes a 6 pack Hot Cocoa Bomb Box ($30). The box includes 3 milk chocolate and 3 white chocolate cocoa bombs.

Sugar Hi (Armonk)
380 Main Street #1821
Armonk, NY 10504
(914) 273-4777

They are currently taking Christmas preorders for a holiday 6 pack ($36) that will be ready for pick up starting December, 19th. The 6 pack contains 2 peppermint white chocolate bombs and 4 milk chocolate bombs.

Sweet Delites Pastry Shop (Somers)
119 Market Plaza
Somers, NY 10589
(914) 276-6444

Sweet Delites Pastry Shop sells their hot cocoa bombs for $7.99 each. Each hot cocoa bomb is individually wrapped and decorated for Hanukkah or Christmas. They have milk chocolate hot cocoa bombs in store but white chocolate cocoa bombs can be ordered. Hot cocoa bombs are available at the shop or can be preordered.

Sweets by Cari (Ossining)

Hot cocoa bombs are available by pre-order only. Currently, the holiday pre-sale is currently closed. I have included a link to her site, as Cari is planning to open up ordering again closer to the holidays! Flavors include classic milk chocolate, white chocolate, dark chocolate, white peppermint mocha, salted caramel and Grinch. Prices range between $5 – $6 each. She also sells a variety pack of all 6 flavors for $30. Packaging costs $1 extra for each bomb, unless they are purchased in sets of 6 or 12. All orders need to be picked up in Ossining.

Sweets by Smooches (Yonkers)

Hot Cocoa bombs cost 3 for $15, 6 for $25 or 12 for $45. Flavors include white or milk chocolate with options for Nutella or caramel filling. Orders should be placed a few days in advance. The preferred ordering method is to text Lauren (contact info in the Sweets by Smooches FB page).

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5 Recommended Peekskill Eats

Peekskill is a small city situated along the Hudson River in northern Westchester County. It has a vibrant food scene and has many restaurants and eateries. While your dining options may seem daunting, here are 5 recommended Peekskill eats that we think you should try when visiting.

Ramen from Ramenesque – Rameneseque has locations in Peekskill and Thornwood. There is a reason that they have won the Best of Westchester ramen category in both 2018 and 2019. They serve six different varieties of ramen, which means, you may have to visit six times! We always get the Shoyu Ramen, pictured above. It’s a traditional soy sauce flavored ramen that the kids enjoy.

Tapas from Iron Vine – I know, this isn’t one specific thing to eat. However, Iron Vine serves Spanish/Mediterranean dishes and has an extensive tapas menu. If you are looking for a dinner out with friends, I highly recommend this restaurant. This way, you can order a bunch of the different tapas on the menu (or almost all of them, like we did. This pic only shows round one!) and share. Plus, they have a great cocktail menu and also serve salads, sandwiches and entrees, if you’re not interested in tapas.

“Out of This World Shakes” from The Hudson Creamery – We’ve tried several of The Hudson Creamery’s signature sundaes, but our favorite has been the “Out of This World Shake.” Their milkshakes were the 2018 Best of Westchester winner. We’ve only tried the Peanut Butter and Chocolate “Out of This World” shake, pictured above. But out of four different freak shakes throughout Westchester County that we tried, this was one of our faves! Located right by the Peekskill waterfront, we enjoy taking our ice cream down to the water and eating it while we take in the beautiful views of the Hudson River.

Churrasco from El Bambu – We ordered takeout from El Bambu for the first time recently. I think this was our first time trying Guatemalan food. We ordered a couple of different dishes, but the Churrasco was our definite favorite! The steak was so tender and flavorful. We tried it both in the Specialty of the House wrap as well as the Churrasco Chapin. There is space to dine in at this small, unassuming restaurant located on Bank Street, or you can opt to takeout, like we did.

Peaceful Provisions Doughnuts – Peaceful Provisions is located in the first floor of the Peekskill Brewery, also down by the Peekskill waterfront. They are a family, women owned small business. They make vegan doughnuts from scratch in small batches. While their doughnut menu rotates, all of the doughnuts that we tried were delicious (pictured from top right, clockwise: Strawberry, Half Baked Funfetti Cookie Doughnut, NY Cream, and Lemon Poppy Seed.

What are your favorite Peekskill eats?

Soukup Farms Coffee Infused Maple Syrup {Made in New York}

I recently visited the new Mohegan Lake Farmer’s Market in northern Westchester County.  While the farmer’s market itself was disappointing and almost nonexistent, I didn’t leave empty handed.  One of the few vendors at the market was Soukup Farms, selling their maple syrup.  Their coffee infused maple syrup caught my eye and after sampling a taste I knew that I had to bring some home.

The syrup is a delicious combination of  locally roasted Irving Farm Coffee Roasters Gotham Dark Roast and the farm’s Dark Amber maple syrup. Our weekday frozen waffles have become elevated to another level!  And on the weekends when we get the chance to have have homemade pancakes or french toast, this syrup is the finishing touch.  When I purchased the bottle, I was told that this syrup also tastes really good on yogurt or ice cream.  We have’t tried either of these combos…….yet!

The coffee infused maple syrup is available in three different size bottles, 2-oz ($4.50), half pint ($8.00) , or a pint ($14.00). Currently, Soukup Farms does not sell their products in stores in Putnam or Westchester counties.  However, besides the Mohegan Lake Farmer’s Market, they are also a drop-in vendor at the Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow Farmer’s Market.  The syrup is available in many Dutchess County locations including the Taste of NY Store  at the Todd Hill location, Zoe’s Ice Cream Barn in LaGrange, McEnroe’s Organic Market in Millerton and JSK Cattle Company in Millbrook.  You can also order this coffee infused syrup, as well as their classic maple syrup and other maple products online or find them as a vendor at several local events!

Soukup Farms is a third generation family farm located in Dover Plains, NY, tapping tree since 1955.   The farm has over 2,000 taps and is continuing to expand.   They are a member of the NY State Maple Association and a participant in NYS Maple Weekends in March. Don’t miss their Harvest Festival this October where you can visit the farm and enjoy some family fun!

The Details:
Soukup Farms
271 Halls Corner Road
Dover Plains, NY 12522
(845) 264-3137

Check out their website and follow them on Facebook and Instagram for all the latest news!

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Weekend Chef’s Book Review: Why We Get Fat

Book Review- Why We Get Fat: And What To Do About It  by Gary Taubes

I included this book in my September favorites post a few weeks back. Nancy picked it up from the library and asked me to read it for a post. I thought I would battle through it as it certainly looked like a fad diet book, one which I had little interest in reading. I was certainly surprised to find that the format of the book is historically driven and scientifically backed, both good things. And it’s really not a diet book at all. Gary Taubes is a journalist and merely reports the facts as supporting evidence to a larger truth. He had previously written Good Calories, Bad Calories: Fats, Carbs, and the Controversial Science of Diet and Health. As I understand, the book was as long and dry as the title suggests. He was inspired to cut the book down so more people could access the valuable information he presented. The first book was just too much for most people to dig through.

The follow up, Why We Get Fat supports the same basic argument: carbs and sugar are the root of obesity and a host of illnesses. He provides the science behind this claim and looks to dismantle the arguments against it:  Eating less food and increasing exercise is a popular however frustrating way to try to lose weight because it chemically just doesn’t work, eating fat has never been proven to increase belly fat, the list goes on. I know it all sounds pretty crazy. Just eliminate starch, carbs and sugars of all kinds and eat as much of the correct foods as your want, no calorie restrictions. The book has really hit home for me. After getting back from Disney World in August, I really felt like a mess and I blamed it on the excess calories as we’re taught to do. What I think the real problem was, in hindsight, was the desserts at every meal including the doughnuts at breakfast. My mom is diabetic and it’s a path that I’m trying to avoid. Looking back, she always had ice cream every night and started using Weight Watchers to get back on track 20 years ago.

The one ask I have is for everyone to read the book and make their own decision about food and the science of what really makes us fat.  In an upcoming post, I’m going to share some of the book-inspired changes that I’ve made to my diet for the long term, not as a quick fix. A little preview: I’m missing chocolate and ice cream but unlimited bacon makes up for it.

Please share any of your thought or experiences in the comments section.

-The Weekend Chef

Lunch Will Never Be The Same

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Lunch Will Never Be The Same (Phoebe G. Green series #1) by Veera Hiranandani
Rating:  3 out of 5 stars

Phoebe G. Green is a relatively new chapter book series, with this first book published in October of 2014.  Phoebe is a third grader who likes to make lists.  She meets a new girl in her class, Camille, who is from France.  Camille’s father is a pastry chef and Phoebe becomes intrigued with the interesting lunches that Camille brings to school:  beet salad with goat cheese, butter lettuce salad with duck, chickpea salad with red peppers and cilantro and more.  Phoebe’s family eats the same thing every week: spaghetti on Mondays, baked chicken with boxed mashed potatoes on Tuesdays, etc.  Seeing the lunches that Camille brings to school, Phoebe only imagines what dinner at her house must be like.  So, she comes up with a plan to get herself invited to Camille’s for dinner, so she can find out for herself.

This book will introduce your child to all different kinds of food from goat cheese and pakoras (Phoebe’s best friend Sage is Indian and she loves the pakoras that his mom makes) to Beef Bourguignon and Baked Alaska.  This is a book not just about food (though there’s a lot of it mentioned in the book!).  It’s also a tale about friendship and that it’s okay to make new friends and still keep your old friends.  I enjoyed that it was the child in this book trying to get her parents to cook new things, versus the usual parents getting their kids to try new foods.  Both of my kids each read this book on their own and thought it was an okay read.

This book is geared towards readers in early elementary school (grades 1-3) with short chapters and lots of illustrations.

*This book was borrowed from the library.