Our first guest blogger and swapper, Kelli Samson of Fresh Scratch

 

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Kelli Samson has and will be participating in the Oly Food Swap. Both she and her husband are teachers in Olympia. (I’ve been to her classes and she makes the topics so interesting! – Brooke)

Kelli says..

Being a food blogger (Fresh Scratch) can be pretty lonely without a real, physical community. I mean, you’re in your kitchen, whipping stuff up, writing about it, sharing the recipes. But there’s not a lot of real person-to-person connection going on with others who share the passion. Sure, there’s a ton of meeting on the internet, swapping stories and cookbook recommendations, but at some point you want that to come to life.

 Imagine my delight when my friend Stacee first wrote about the Olympia Food Swap for Thurston Talk a few years ago. My people! But how could I get myself on the list?!

 Imagine my even larger delight when my new friend Kathy turned out to be one of the people behind the Food Swap! Holla! I was stoked.

 Last fall I attended my first swap, and it was awesome. As in, I was full of awe. I couldn’t believe all the stuff people made that they had so much of that they could swap it – chocolate sauce, apple pie liquer, canned pears, jams, jams, and more jams, applesauce, meat, fruit leather. I mean. Seriously.

 I showed up with my twenty-four pints of homemade cocoa mix and a song in my heart. And where I’d failed myself {I hadn’t canned a thing that summer}, others had succeeded and were willing to help fill the holes in my pantry simply for a little cocoa mix. Where had these people been?!

 Quite simply put, they’d been busy. And so had I. And so are we. But not so busy that we can’t help fill each others’ gaps now and then and share a nice potluck together. It’s brilliant.

 This year I’m going to bring a little bit of a lot of things, I think, instead of all one item. If you’re curious about that cocoa mix that I thought was magical enough to make 24 pints to share, though, the recipe is below.

 Hoping to see you at the swap! Come say howdy.

 XO, Mrs. Fresh Scratch

(a.k.a. Kelli Samson)

 Here is a recipe Kelli would like to share:

The Un-Swiss Miss

 If you can use a whisk, you’ve got this.

 Get out a quart-sized mason jar and get ready to fill it with all that is good about winter. Well, most of it, anyway.

 Whisk together:

 2 1/4 cups of powdered sugar

 1 1/2 cups of your favorite cocoa powder {I like to find the deepest, darkest kind in bulk at my local co-op}

 3/4 tsp. salt {you may adjust this, of course, depending on how you feel about salt and chocolate co-mingling. I think it’s fabulous.}

 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon {my favorite, favorite, favorite cocoa is from Moonstruck Chocolates in Portland, OR, and they serve it as “Mexican Hot Chocolate.” This means there’s cinnamon in it.}

 After whisking, put it in your cute jar and stick it in the cupboard. You’re set through spring break, because after half a year, you should toss what’s left.

 How will you have any left, I ask you?! Won’t this be empty by December? Don’t you like cocoa?

 I like to scald my milk on the stove {if it starts foaming up, you’ve done gone too far, kid.}, then whisk in a quarter of a cup of this cocoa mixture per cup of milk. Some may say that’s heavy-handed, but I’ll let you be the judge and do what you want. I’m nice like that.

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