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Phil Vassar returns to Lynchburg

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Phil Vassar singing Love is Alive

Phil Vassar returns to Lynchburg as he has done for many years to perform a benefit concert for the Miller Home.  Phil is unusual in that he remembers his roots and returns home to donate his time and share his talents for this annual fundraiser for the Miller Home for Girls which offers a safe haven to young women who, for whatever reason, are unable to live at home.

As a child, Phil Vassar attended church next to the Miller Home and his youth group used to sing there when he was a teenager.  After moving to Nashville and making it in the music business, Phil remembered those days at the Miller Home and decided to support them by performing and donating 100% of the proceeds to the home.  Phil also has done a benefit concert for St. Jude Children’s Hospital and Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital.  OK, I admit, I really didn’t know much about Phil Vassar before I started writing this blog post, but I must say that I am impressed with the man because he is so generous in helping organizations that help children.  That alone should be reason enough for you to buy a ticket, even if you aren’t familiar with him or if you don’t care for country music.

This years concert will be April 2-3, 2014.  There will be an acoustic benefit concert held downtown Lynchburg (walking distance from The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast). Tickets for this event are $125.00 for an individual ticket, $600.00 for a half table (6 guests) or $1,200 for a full table for 12 guests.  This event is limited to 250 guests so it will offer an intimate environment where you will be able to be close to the star.  On April 3 Phil Vassar and friends will play at  Phase 2 in Lynchburg.  VIP tickets are $95.00 and include a balcony lounge, dinner and acoustic concert by a friend of Phil Vassar (last year Charlie Daniels and Robbin Thompson came to Lynchburg with Phil) during dinner.  If you just want to hear Phil Vassar, general admission tickets are only $35.00.

Since The Miller Home for Girls opened its doors in 1875, it has cared for more than 900 young women ages four to eighteen, from different counties, cities and even states. The home strives to provide a traditional family environment while addressing the individual needs, behaviors, and goals of each young woman that comes through the doors.  Tickets to the Phil Vassar concert can be purchased using your credit card by calling the Miller Home at 434-845-0241 during regular business hours or if you are in town, you can stop by the Miller Home at 2134 Westerly Drive to purchase your tickets where they only take cash or checks.

If you will be visiting Lynchburg to attend on of Phil Vassar’s concert and stay at The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast, we will donate a portion of your room charges to the Miller Home. Just let us know when booking your reservation that you will be attending his concert.

 

 

Breakfast Bacon and Egg Souffle’

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Bacon and Egg souffle recipe

Bacon and Egg Soufle

 

Our easy to prepare breakfast bacon and egg souffle’ is super easy to prepare and a great twist on the traditional bacon and eggs breakfast.  The bacon can be cooked ahead of time.  We often cook an entire package of bacon (we prefer the thick cut bacon), crumbled and stored in the freezer until needed for this and dozens of other amazing recipes.

Ingredients:

  • 1 8 oz. can refrigerated crescent rolls
  • cooking spray
  • 7 eggs
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream (you can substitute half and half if you prefer)
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 8 slices bacon, crisply cooked, crumbled
  • 1 cup shredded Colby-Monterey Jack cheese

Directions:

1.  Preheat oven to 375°F.  Separate dough into 8 rectangles, lightly press or roll two of the triangles into a 6-inch square.  Press 1 dough square into bottom of each of 4 greased Texas muffin cups; fold excess dough and crimp edges.  Coat edges with cooking spray.

2.  In medium bowl, beat eggs, whipping cream and pepper with whisk until well-blended; set aside.  In 10-inch skillet, heat butter over medium-high heat.  Cook and stir red pepper in butter 1-2 minutes, just until tender.  Pour egg mixture into skillet.  With spatula, pull thin layer off bottom of skillet toward center.  Repeat around pan.  Continue to gather cooked portion in center of skillet until about half of the egg mixture is set (eggs will be very runny).

3.  Immediately remove from heat; stir in half of the bacon and cheese.  Working quickly, spoon partially set eggs into the greased muffin cups.  Top with remaining bacon and cheese.  Bake 17 minutes or until golden brown.  Cool 5 minutes; carefully remove soufflés from cups.  Note:  it is always a good idea to partially fill the empty cups with water before cooking the breakfast bacon souffle’.

Serves 4

This dish incorporates the toast, bacon and eggs into one simple dish.  To fill the plate you can serve it with tomatoes (raw, fried or baked), baked asparagus  or a cup of fresh fruit.  If you love mushrooms you can add mushrooms to the mixture, just lightly saute them with the peppers and follow the recipe.

Once a month The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast posts a recipe on its blog and then it gets added to our recipe page on our website.  The recipe page is the single best place to go to for a list of all of our recipes and is organized by category.  We hope you enjoy our breakfast bacon and egg souffle.

Terrapin Mountain 50K and Half Marathon

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Terrapin Mountain 50K

Start of the Terrapin Mountain 50K and half marathon race in 2013

The 7th annual Terrapin Mountain 50K and half marathon will be held Saturday, March 22, 2014 in Sedalia, Virginia.  Located about 25 miles northwest of Lynchburg, VA the course runs through the George Washington National Forest in the Blue Ridge Mountains.  Many runners camp there the night before but others want a comfortable bed a warm room and if they bring their non-running spouse/friend/partner we offer a good nights sleep before a day filled with excitement and challenges. The race starts about dawn.

Runners of both the half marathon and 50K race follow trails that involve steep climbs and switchbacks that take them up the mountain, where the overall elevation change during the course of the race is about 3,250 feet.  The half marathon is one loop of Terrapin Mountain while the 50K course consists of multiple loops of Terrapin Mountain.  The 50K qualifies as part of the Virginia based trail race series known as the Beast Series and the Lynchburg Ultra Series.  These runs are designed for serious runners that have done extensive off road training on steep grades.

Terrapin Mountain 50K and half marathon in Lynchburg Virginia

Punching bib at final summit at the Terrapin Mountain 50K

Last year we had a guests who ran the half marathon, was proud to have completed the race and thoroughly enjoyed returning to the Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast to relax and rejuvenate with a massage in our on-site Massage and BodyWorks Studio.  We would love to host you while you participate in this challenging event.  Call us at 434.846.1388 to check on availability or you can always check our on-line reservation system.

While we would love to have you as a guest at The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast, DO NOT try this race unless you have trained for it!  If you want more information or want to register for the race click here to be connected to their website.

Good luck!

 

The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast Recipes

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Recipes from The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast

The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast Recipes.

As you know, for the past three years, we post a recipe to our blog monthly.  Many of you have asked us for our recipes and we are happy to give them to you or you can search through the blog and try to find them, but as we post more items to our blog it gets harder and harder to find specific recipes so we have just created a new page on our website that lists all of our recipes and links you to each one.  They are listed by categories making it easier to find a specif recipe or a group of recipes.  You will want to bookmark that page and refer to it regularly as we will be adding at least one new recipe each month.  For those of you who have stayed with us, now you have access to our bed and breakfast recipes and for those of you who haven’t yet stayed, now you’ll know what you are missing.

Here is the new page for:  The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast Recipes.

If you are planning to visit the Lynchburg area we would live to have you as our guest.  We typically can meet most dietary restrictions so let us know in advance and we will try to create something special for you.  While looking through our bed and breakfast recipes, if you see something you would like to have on your next visit here let us know and we will be happy to accommodate you.  Reservations can be made by calling us at 434.846.1388 or you can book your room on line.

Again, the link to the page with all of our recipes is:  The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast Recipes.  Don’t forget to bookmark this page as we will be adding more recipes in the near future.

Decadent Dark Chocolate Waffle Recipe

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Chocolate Waffle recipe by The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast

Chocolate Waffle with a twist—They are healthy!

For the past three years we have featured a chocolate waffle recipe in February and this year’s recipe is our best yet.  We have cut back on the sugar and substituted a healthier olive oil for the melted butter.  This year we used buttermilk over whole milk and finally we used a heart healthy chocolate that was 70% cacao.  All of these changes make this a healthier alternative to our other chocolate waffles.  Okay, I’m not insinuating this is health food, but it is a better option than the previous years recipes.  The waffle isn’t as sweet as in years past but after you add syrup there is a great balance.  We topped the chocolate waffle with a couple slices of strawberries. Unfortunately they weren’t fresh from our garden (but we will have them in the May-June time frame).   For the olive olive oil, use a mild flavored oil that is not too peppery.  While attending an innkeepers conference in Charleston SC in January we found The Crescent Olive company that has numerous blends of olive oil that are infused with different herbs and fruits.  You need to check them out!  For this recipe we used their Blood Orange Olive Oil.  Chocolate and orange is a great combination!

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
  • 1 Tbs. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • Zest of one orange
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 6 oz. bittersweet chocolate (at least 70% cacao), finely chopped

Preheat oven to 250°.  This will allow you to hold your cooked chocolate waffles hot so that you can serve everyone a warm waffle.  Whisk flour, cocoa powder, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, chocolate and salt in a large bowl.  Make sure you break up the “packed” brown sugar so there aren’t large hunks of sugar. Ideally, all wet ingredients should be at room temperature but who has the time to let everything sit out for an hour or two before you start cooking!  In a separate bowl blend together the egg yolks, buttermilk, olive oil, orange zest and vanilla.  Making a well in the dry ingredients gradually incorporate the wet ingredients, mixing just until combined.  DO NOT OVER MIX. In this case, less mixing is better!  If you want to get a head start on breakfast you can do this much the night before, just cover and chill (you will still need to add the egg whites the following morning).

Using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat egg whites in a small bowl until soft peaks form.  Working in 2 batches, fold egg whites into batter just until combined.

Heat a waffle iron until very hot; lightly coat with nonstick spray.  Don’t forget this step otherwise you will be picking pieces of waffle out of your waffle iron–no fun.  Working in batches, cook waffles until cooked through.  Transfer to a wire rack set inside a baking sheet, cover loosely with foil and keep warm in oven until ready to serve.

Serve with butter and syrup or strawberry sauce.  We served this February 2014 breakfast with a homemade strawberry sauce and sliced strawberries. You could dust this with confectioners sugar an/or put a dollop of whip creme on the waffle if you really want to indulge.

Darth Vadar and chocolate waffles

Of course I love the dark side of breakfast! Chocolate waffles are great!

I like to think of chocolate as the dark side of breakfast!  I know, I will use any excuse to add chocolate to any meal but in this case, these chocolate waffles rock!  If you wanted to make one more tweak to make them healthier use one cup all-purpose flour and one cup whole wheat flour.  Okay, I lied, one more tweak, add 1/4 cup chia seeds to dry ingredients.  You won’t see them because they blend in with the chocolate, but they will give you a whole grain,fiber and antioxidants!

We hope you enjoy this recipe.  We have fun at The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast creating our breakfasts and playing with different recipes.  Many of our followers wait for our monthly recipe to appear on our blog which is then transmitted to our Facebook and Google+ page.  If you haven’t Liked or +1 our page yet, please do so as we have some great surprises in store for you.  Also, check back next week for a new page created for anyone who loves food!

Heads up!  This year is the 60th anniversary of the D-Day invasion and there will be many great programs at the D-Day Memorial the week of June 6.   Don’t wait until the last moment, book your rooms for the event now!  Also, this year is the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Lynchburg (June 17-18).  If you are a Civil War buff you will want to come to these festivities to hear about this little known battle.  Again, rooms will book up so call now and book your room.  Finally, next year will the the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War (April 9-12) when General Lee surrendered to General Grant at Appomattox Courthouse (about 20 minutes from here).  They are expecting over 7,000 visitors from around the world to visit that week.  It is NOT too early to make your reservations.  Call us at 434-846-1388 or book your room on-line.

 

 

Anne Spencer’s Home and Garden

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Home of Anne Spencer

Home of Anne Spencer

Anne Spencer's phone booth

Phone booth

Recently we toured Anne Spenser’s home and garden located at 1313 Pierce Street in Lynchburg.  Our tour guide was Shaun Spencer-Hester, the granddaughter of Anne Spencer and daughter of Chauncey Spenser, one of the Tuskegee Airmen.   Walking through the home was like stepping back in time.  There were photos, letters scattered around the home.  The “phone booth” in the home has names and phone numbers scribbled on the walls. The furnishings belonged to Anne and Edward and you got the sense that they would be coming back from the store any moment. There were invoices and cancelled checks sitting on the desk and Anne Spenser’s cookbook was on the kitchen table.  You could tell that these were real people and this was their home.  All too often house museums have been “sterilized” with the removal of many personal items, but not in this case. All too often it is easy to clean house and throw things away, fortunately the family keep all these treasures so that we can now enjoy those traces of the past. The attic hosts a train set and it is easy to visualize Anne’s grandchildren playing in the attic and listening to records on the old record player.

Anne Spencer House

Child’s record player

We heard stories of how Edward, Anne’s husband built the home and how he recycled many items by using them in the home.  Edward was a parcel post carrier (mail man) who also raised chickens so it wasn’t unusual for him to deliver your mail as well as some freshly laid eggs.   Edward was a man of many talents  who not only built his home, but several others, built Anne’s private writing retreat, Edankraal , in the garden.  The name Edankraal was derived from Edward, Anne and kraal, the Afrikaans word for corral or homeplace.

Kitchen in Anne Spencer's home

Anne Spencer’s Kitchen

Anne Spencer (1882-1975) was an internationally acclaimed poet during the Harlem Renaissance period of the 1920’s and she continued her writings throughout her life.  Because of the historical significance of her body of work, it was turned over to the University of Virginia to be catalogued and preserved for future generations.  When Anne wasn’t writing, teaching, raising children you could often find her in her garden behind the house which served as a place of inspiration for her writings.  Today many of Ann’s bulbs, peonies roses and shrubs still survive and offer visitors a burst of color when visiting the garden.   Today,Lynchburg’s Hillside Garden Club has adopted the garden and is responsible for maintaining it.

Edankraal

Anne Spencer’s private retreat, Edankraal.

The gardens are open to the public November-March , but the home is only open on special days or by appointment.  This private museum is a must see.  To schedule a tour please call the museum at 434-845-1313.  Admission prices $5.00 for seniors and $10.00 for adults.  Of course donations are always welcome.  If you will be staying with us while in Lynchburg and are interested in touring this home (we highly recommend it) let us know when you make your reservation and we will call to set up your tour.  Ideally, two weeks notice would be appreciated.

A poem by Anne Spencer about her garden:

This small garden is half my world
I am nothing to it-when all is said,
I plant the thorn and kiss the rose,
But they will grow when I am dead.