Sweets

I have not always been a girl who wanted to be firmly rooted in the West. As a little girl, at about age 5,  I developed a character of sorts. Sometimes I walked around with a full blown New York accent and would be referred to only as “the little girl from the big apple”. I was convinced that I had been born in the wrong place. People asked my mom if I was from New York. I begged my parents to move. It was a little embarrassing.

And then. Then I grew out of it. And I loved my West and only wanted to move deeper into it. I am the rare breed that loves the vast openness of the plains to the East of the Rockies. Sprawling grass and hill for miles laid out like golden fabric billowing in the wind. I love the strong jut of the Tetons and the lazy lull of the Rockies. I love how lush the Sonoran Desert is during the spring and how sunsets look in the dusty Southwestern air. I love the draws of Wyoming where the desert and the plains come together and make these vibrant crevices of life. I love all of the West and it all feels like home, even if I do play favorites sometimes.

This website is my love letter to the West, both its physical attributes and those things that it stands for.

But now, Headed Out West is going back East. In the coming week the man and I will pack up the car, the cat, and the kitchen and embark on an adventure that will end in upstate New York where I will learn to be a butcher. And not just any butcher. As always, I’m focusing on sustainability and the humane treatment of your food before it gets to your plate.  A lot of the story will unfold in coming posts and I hope that my knowledge can be passed directly to you. It’s important to learn about, know about, and love meat. And this will, in some ways, be our journey together. In the mean time, though, expect craziness, pictures from the road, and even more recipes.

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I need to let you know that I have a love of magazines that can only be described as unhealthy. I have a penchant for the printed word and pictures all shiny in gloss that got started at a very young age. There’s something about their portability. Something about opening them up to the middle and just, starting there. I love that you could spend anywhere from 30 seconds to 30 minutes reading an article. Sometimes I read them back to front. That’s right, because you know how good that last page is.

I read magazines about food, and adventurers, and literature. And sometimes, though I am strict about allowing it only when I am sick in bed, I read trashy celebrity magazines. There, truth is out.

This love of magazines has not accrued me the knowledge that, oh, say, books might have. But they have given me a lot of joy and a lot of really really useless valuable information. Like this little gem.

There are 360,000 more barrels of aging bourbon in the state of Kentucky than there are residents. How crazy is that?

That’s over a quarter of a million more barrels of bourbon than people. Where are they housing all of that? Who is drinking all of it? I just want to take a moment to be proud that American Whiskey, or bourbon, is thriving. Because, without it, these cookies wouldn’t be here. And I’m not even sure bourbon is their star ingredient, because… it might be bacon. Or chocolate.

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Egg whites. They’re the viscous, protein rich, and sticky part of the egg. They’re good in omelettes, meringues, and macaroons. They’re also ideal for making an angel food cake at home. Which is what we’re here to talk about. Sure, they are easy to buy in the store, but why not make one yourself? Why not add some mint? And white chocolate and lime frosting? This is the cool-your-mouth-off dessert of summer. I know you’re going to love it.

 

This cake is light and minty. It’s refreshing. The perfect prescription for hot summer days. Serve it with some berries. Or by itself.

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