Saturday, 23 November 2013
What are your favourite winter foods and recipes?
Tuesday, 15 October 2013
I hope you like my mother's delicious chocolate zucchini cake!
Chocolate Zucchini Cake
1/2 c. butter, softened
4 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 c. sour cream
1 chocolate fudge cake with pudding in mix (18.25g)
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 c. grated zucchini
1 c. chocolate chips
1 c. chopped pecans
Mix ingredients with electric mixer. Grease and flour bundt pan or 10" tube pan. Bake at 325 for 40-50 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool on rack 15 minutes, then invert on a serving plate to continue cooling. Frost when cool if you want.
Monday, 9 September 2013
I've already got apple pies coming out our ears, and with a new school job (yay!) I don't have much time anymore for putting up the harvest. So what to do? Cider, of course! Here is the recipe which was given to me by the first aforementioned lady:
12 qts water
12 qts apples or crabapples, cut in half
Bring to boil for 5 minutes. Add 2/3 cup Cream of Tartar. Cover with lid and let sit 24 hours. Strain and can (process in boiling water canner 10 minutes) or put into airtight food-grade containers (I washed out my juice and milk jugs and used them).
If you're going to freeze it, leave plenty of headspace for the juice to expand. Also, this will produce unsweetened apple juice. If you like a sweeter drink, add 4 cups sugar per 30 cups juice (or I just add a tablespoon per glass).
(for those of you who are curious about the difference between apple juice and apple cider - apple juice is simply put through more levels of straining to remove sediment).
Thursday, 29 August 2013
Tuesday, 13 August 2013
1) Learn how to make maple syrup: failed - lost my maple-tapping supplies that I'd ordered online.. they are somewhere in the house but goodness if I know where...
2) Save at least 80% of my monthly grocery bill through gardening: I think I accomplished that in July. Our grocery bills have dropped down to roughly $30/week and 1/3 of that is just milk. Honestly, if I had a cow and chickens, our grocery bill would be zilch.
3) Learn how to can with rubber rings: Successfully canned 4 jars using rubber rings with glass tops. Only one of them did not stay sealed. That's a pretty good success rate for my first time, but I think I'll stick with "normal" lids from now on.
Monday, 12 August 2013
Firstly, after all my jam/jelly submissions, they were all disqualified due to mis-categorization. In other words, nobody had explained how to tag my submissions properly and so none of them were accepted into any category due to confusion.
However my sewing/knitting/crochet did great. I won:
1st prize on a sewn kids vest;
1st prize on a sewn kids sunsuit;
2nd prize on a sewn ladies blouse;
2nd prize on a crochet kids pullover;
3rd prize on knit adult socks
My sewn kids pyjamas didn't place, nor did my knitted dishcloth or sewn clutch.
In total it cost me about $9 total to enter all my entries and I won $14.50 in cash prizes, minus the $5 automatic membership given to vendors, which means I got a cheque for $9.50. Just enough to cover my entry fees.
Next year, my advice to myself:
1) One item per category.
2) Go for the big-payout categories. Even if you only win ONE it will pay for all your entries.
3) Concentrate on handiwork rather than food, which spoils - after the judges taste it, you have to eat it ALL or it'll go to waste.
4) For sewn items, try to make most items reversible or reinforce seams - some judges are picky about seams and will completely disqualify a piece for a personal opinion about seaming.
5) Don't bother having a vendor table, just focus on crafting items for judging. Sitting at a table is a waste of time - prize money will earn more than sales.
Wednesday, 31 July 2013
Tuesday, 30 July 2013
Saskatoon Pie Filling:
4-5 cups saskatoons
3 Tbsp cornstarch
1/2 c sugar
Toss all together until the berries are coated. Pour into unbaked pie crust. Top with another crust and poke holes. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes then lower to 350 for another 50 minutes.
Sunday, 14 July 2013
Tuesday, 25 June 2013
Friday, 21 June 2013
Thank you again for voting and helping me out!
Thursday, 13 June 2013
Wednesday, 22 May 2013
- 2 rows of beets
- 1 row of kale
- 2 rows of broccoli
- 3 rows of onions
- 4 short rows of peas
- 1 1/2 rows of carrots
- 1/2 row of lettuce
- 33 hills of potatoes
- 23 hills of pumpkins/squash
- 10'x10' block of corn
- 3'x3' block of wheat (just an experiment)
NOT PLANTED YET:
- 50+ tomato seedlings still indoors
- blueberry seedlings not germinated yet - 12 pots
- still going to transplant 2 raspberry bushes
If you have any great ideas for canning or cooking these foods, let me know!
Thursday, 16 May 2013
Wednesday, 24 April 2013
Tuesday, 2 April 2013
Monday, 1 April 2013
Saturday, 16 March 2013
This is a wonderful tutorial. I managed (on my first try!) to whip one up in 20 minutes. It's only one layer of fabric so no need to fuss with several layers, like other pouches. Here is a picture of mine:
Monday, 11 March 2013
These little hats are very easy to whip up and are adorable on. Add some elastic or ribbon if your little one likes to take their hat off. I'm also going to try to experiment with some bucket hat patterns for adult-sized heads. Keep an eye here for the results!
Also some sad news on the "homesteading" front... I had planned on tapping my maple trees this spring, however.... I have lost my single tap. I don't get into the city often enough to go buy some more before the melting starts so I'm putting that project off until next spring. I've got a lot on my plate as it is, offering daycare during the week! I'm sure some of these wee ones will benefit from my hat patterns!
Saturday, 2 February 2013
Today's advice is this: plan your whole month's meals in advance and calculate how many portions of meat you will need to make them. For example, every Monday I'm making Creamy Chicken. The recipe calls for 3 chicken breasts. Husband will eat one, and baby & I will split one, leaving one for his brown-bag lunch the next day. When I cook with chicken-legs, I use 5 pieces per recipe (he eats 2, I eat 1, baby eats 1, and he takes 1 to work the next day). Therefore I can calculate exactly how much meat we'll go through for the month. Meat is the most expensive item on our menu, and being married to a carnivore means we are obligated to spend that money.
Planning your month's meals in advance and then spending one solid day cooking-and-freezing will save you money AND time. I spread my cooking out over three days since I have a toddler underfoot and because I usually have three different items that require 8 hours in the slow-cooker.
To save even more money, talk to a small local grocer and ask if they'll give you a discount on bulk-ordering. I talked to my local grocer (a Korean couple who I've befriended) and they basically gave me two cases of chicken breasts for zero profit.
Friday, 25 January 2013
Saturday, 5 January 2013
Tuesday, 1 January 2013
- Learn how to tap Maple trees
- Learn how to make maple syrup
- aim to eliminate at least one month's grocery bill by 80% through gardening
- learn how to can with rubber rings
I have at least one knitting/crochet project planned for each month as well, but due to my wrist surgery at the end of this month, I'm forced to start those projects a bit later. All gung-ho and nowhere to go :)
Have a wonderful year everyone!