The Farmhouse Kitchen: Secret Stash Recipes

For the (almost) fall
Happy (almost) fall, y’all! We are coming up on my favorite time of year. Football and tailgating, the smell of a well-tended fire in the fireplace, or maybe a fire pit surrounded by friends in the backyard, and the holidays! School starts back. We plan mightily for our kids’ activities and fill our calendars with ALL the things. But, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas are just around the corner, too, and that alone combines to make a busy time of year. A little advanced planning is crucial to ensure your holidays aren’t spent with you constantly in the kitchen while the rest of your family and friends are enjoying each other’s company. Make a habit of picking up a few extra items every time you go to the grocery store. Use those things to stock an emergency party pantry. Herbed cream cheese, artichoke hearts, frozen phyllo shells, frozen puff pastry, maybe an extra pound of shrimp, a couple of packages of diced ham, and a couple of boxes of specialty crackers are the beginnings of a ‘secret stash’ that can mean the difference between throwing something together at the last minute or throwing yourself into the car to run out and grab something for unexpected visitors. Keep a list of what you have on hand and a separate recipe file just for party pantry staples. Create an off-limits space in your cabinets to store your stash and voila! You are the instant hostess-with-the-mostest. Being just a little prepared will help you create holiday memories where you are a participant, and not an overworked spectator. I’m sure you have tons of ideas yourself, but here are a few of my crisis pantry recipes to get you started.

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