Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Yogurt


Crockpot Yogurt

1 quart whole milk
1 quart half & half
1/2cup live/ active culture plain yogurt

Put milk and half & half in a crockpot. Cover and cook on low for two hours.  Turn crockpot off and unplug, leave sitting for three hours. 

After three hours, remove one cup of the warmish mixture and blend with the plain store-bought yogurt. Add mixture back to the crockpot and stir to combine.

Wrap with a thick towel and leave undisturbed for eight to twelve hours.

Remove from crockpot and store covered in refrigerator for 7-10 days.

Save 1/2 cup of the yogurt as a starter for your next batch.


You can make a yogurt cheese by lining a strainer with several layers of cheese cloth.  Add yogurt and strain over another bowl in refrigerator for a day. Once the liquid, called whey, has drained out, you are left with a thick, creamy cheese.  Stored in a covered container, it will keep in the refrigerator for two weeks.

We love to have yogurt cheese for breakfast.  Combine with local, raw honey, walnuts and fruit.

(HT Lennie)




Monday, July 26, 2010

Ironing Spray






Since we live in the south our summers are usually brutally hot and humid.  Clothing made from natural fibers, such as linen and cotton are wonderful to wear. Not only do they feel great against the skin, they help keep the body cool.
The problem with  these fabrics are they require ironing unless you like the "I slept in my clothes" look.  For the past year we have been using a lavender ironing spray. It adds a little dampness to the clothes  so ironing goes  quicker and it also gives the clothes a nice fresh smell.

Lavender Ironing Spray

3 oz. 90-proof vodka
12 drops pure lavender essential oil
12 oz. purified water

Pour vodka into a sterilized bottle, add lavender oil.  Swirl vigorously to mix and let stand for at least 24 hours.  Add purified water.  Pour into a spray bottle.  Store in refrigerator. Caution: Do not use in a steam iron.  (Adapted from The clothesline, by Irene Rawlings & Andrea Vansteenhouse).



Saturday, July 24, 2010

Muffins




 After reading Barbara Kingsolver's book, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, we have become even more aware of what we are eating. We have made a conscience effort to eat as locally and in season as possible. Blueberries are one of the foods that we have been enjoying for the last few months. We have three bushes that are fourteen years old and we planted three more bushes this year. It is so nice to walk out in the morning and pick berries, either to eat right off the bushes or to bring inside to use in a recipe.  What we don't eat that day is frozen so that we can enjoy blueberries all year. One of our favorite ways to eat blueberries are in muffins. They take less than ten minutes to put together and only 20 to 25 minutes to cook, so even on a weekday it is a quick breakfast. 


Clover's Blueberry Muffins

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare muffin pan with paper liners or grease and flour pan.

  2. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together; set aside (reserve 2 tablespoons - see tip below)

  3. Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add eggs and beat well. Add mik, vanilla and lemon juice; mix.  Add flour mixture, stirring until just combined. Fold in blueberries.

  4. Fill muffin pans 2/3 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes.
Tip: Dust blueberries with 2 tablespoons of reserved flour mixture.  This helps keep the blueberries from rising to the top of the muffins. 





Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Life

Life




"Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is bliss, taste it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it."
~ Mother Teresa

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Baking Day

Tuesday
Baking Day


Clover's Daily Bread

2 teaspoons yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
2 Tablespoons warm water

2 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups bread flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup honey
1 cup warm water

In a small dish, combine yeast, sugar and warm water. Let sit about 10 minutes.  In a large bowl combine remaining ingredients along with yeast mixture. Mix well.

Knead dough for about 5 minutes or until dough is smooth and elastic.

Place dough  in a lightly greased bowl and turn dough over.  Cover with a cloth and allow to rise until double in size. This usually takes about an hour to an hour and a half.

After dough has risen, punch down. Shape dough in a greased  9x4 loaf pan. Let rise until double in size; about an hour.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake loaf for 30 minutes. Remove from pan and cool on wire rack.

Enjoy with butter or jam.



"Give us this day our daily bread." Matthew 6:11

Monday, July 19, 2010

Laundry

Monday
Laundry Day







Laundry Detergent


1 bar Ivory soap
1/2 bar Octagon soap
2/3 cup Borax
2 quarts water
3 gallons of warm water


Grate both soaps. In a saucepan combine the soap and 2 quarts of water.  Cook on medium heat, stirring as needed, until melted.  Remove from heat and add Borax. Allow to cool slightly.  Add 3 gallons of water. Cover bucket and let set over night. Use 3/4 cup per load of laundry.
For stains:  pour directly on stain, rub and allow to set for at least an hour. Laundry as usual.