Marshmallows

I really wanted to test out my kitchenaid whisk attachment and some of the higher speeds today.  I decided what better way to do that than making homemade marshmallows for the FIRST. TIME. EVER!!  It was really easy only took 3 ingredients and the outcome was overall fantastic!! I am really enjoying my new Kitchenaid Pro Design 600 that I picked up refurbished by the manufacturer for $220 with the pour shield, spiral dough hook, whisk and cake paddle attachments.  It has held up to everything I’ve thrown in it and is making cooking so much more fun!

Wanna make some marshmallows too?

Marshmallow Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 (.25oz) packets unflavoured powder gelatin
  • 1 cup water

Instructions

  1. Put 1/2 cup water in the botton of the mixer bowl, sprinkle gelatin over water, walk away.
  2. In a small saucepan pour remaining 1/2 cup water, honey & sugar. Cook over medium-high heat until boiling, then about 7-9 minutes later check the temp using a candy thermometer if you are lucky enough to have one, I am not, or use the cold water test discussed here.  Once you’ve reached correct temp of 240 degrees farenheit, remove from heat.
  3. Turn mixer on to lowest setting and slowly, pouring down the side of the bowl, add the honey mixture.  Once all the mixture is incorporated, time to crank up the speed.  Turn it up to highest speed setting (mine is 10) and let it do it’s thing while you wander around the house waiting so patiently for it to thicken up and resemble marshmallow fluff (or really really stiff frosting).  Roughly 10-15 minutes.
  4. Once it’s thickened to your liking scoop into a 13×9 pan lined with parchment paper…or if you are like me and too lazy to wash the ONLY pan you have that size in time…just spread it out on the piece of parchment paper and using your finger kinda spread it around into a rectangular shape that’s roughly 5cm high.
  5. Set aside in a safe place ,where no little fingers will try to lick it, to dry for approximately 12 hours (overnight is good too).  Cut into whatever shape makes you happy and store in a dry coolish place….or eat them…or do whatever you like to do with marshmallows.

For storage: I dust the cut marshmallows in flour and put in an air tightish container. They should keep for about a month…assuming they last that long!!

The KitchenAid in action:

image

Baked Crispy Fish & Potato Casserole

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds Potatos (peeled, chopped, parboiled) 
  • 2 pounds Fish Fillets 
  • 1 cup Homemade Mayonnaise (room temperature)
  • 1 cup Cheddar Cheese (shredded)
  • 1/4 stick (2 oz) Butter (cut into small cubes)
  • 4 tablespoons Oil (get fancy use something delicious…Olive, Coconut, Almond..live a little)
  • 8-10 round Butter Crackers (crushed, think Ritz crackers)
  • 1/4 cup sliced Almonds
  • 1 teaspoon Homemade Fish & Poultry Seasoning

    Instructions

    1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees farenheit. In a lightly greased 13×9 pan line bottom of pan with parboiled potatoes.  
    2. Over potatoes evenly place cubes of butter, drizzle 2 tablespoons oil and sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon of F&P Seasoning.
    3. Pour 1/2 cup mayonnaise over all of the potatoes, then sprinkly 1/2 a cup of cheddar cheese over the mayonnaise.
    4. In a single layer place fish fillets on top of the cheese ensuring full coverage of the lower layers.
    5. Pour remaining 1/2 cup of mayonnaise over fish fillets followed by remaining 1/2 cup of cheddar cheese.
    6. In a small bowl mix crackers, almonds and remaining 1/2 teaspoon F&P seasoning until well incorporated. Generously cover the top of the cheese layer with cracker mixture, ensure that it is completely covered. Drizzle remaining oil evenly over the cracker mixture.
    7. Bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes or until crust is golden brown and fish is flaky and potatos are easily pierced with a fork.

    Serve with a simple side salad of fresh spring greens, tomatos, onions & shredded carrots, topped with one of these delicious homemade salad dressings (link coming soon!!)


    image

    Crunchy & Green Triple B Muffins

    Bacon, Bananas & Blueberries???
    In muffin & loaf form? WHAT?!?!?

    Yes I did it. They were absolutely delicious.  Feel free to make some of your own. 

    Crunchy & Green Triple B Muffins

    This recipe makes approximately 24 muffins or 6 muffins and a 7″ loaf.

    Ingredients

    • 2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
    • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1/4 cup bacon grease with a bit of neutral flavored oil to top off the measuring cup
    • 2 large egg (can substitute 1/4 cup banana or applesauce for each egg to make egg-free)
    • 3/4 milk; dairy and non-dairy both work
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 6 to 8 ounces fresh or frozen blueberries (do not thaw frozen) (about 1 cup)
    • 1/2lb crispy bacon (reserve grease for oil in recipe), crumbled
    • 2 small ripe and soft bananas
    • 2 tablespoons flaxseeds
    • 1/4 sliced almonds
    • 1 whole kale leaf or handful of baby spinach

    Directions

    1. In a large bowl, mix until well combined, flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, flaxseed and almonds. 
    2. In a 2 cup liquid measuring cup put grease/oil, eggs, milk, vanilla, bananas and kale/spinach, using an immersion blender, puree until all ingredients are smooth. 
    3. Mix blueberries and then bacon into flour mixture. 
    4. Add liquid mixture and fold until just incorporated, do not overmix, you want the ingredients to all be moist, but a little lumpy is fine. 
    5. Scoop by the spoonful into muffin cups (about 3/4 full) or pour/scoop into loaf pan.
    6. Place in preheated (375 degrees F) oven for 15-20 minutes (6/12 cup muffin pan), 45 minutes for loaf pan.  Remove with you can insert knife/toothpick into center and remove clean and tops are golden brown.  

    Serve with butter and honey/maple syrup!

        Enjoy! 

        image

        ​Super Soft Lightly Sour Sourdough Bread (in the bread maker or not)/Dinner Rolls and Pizza Crust

        I was on the hunt for a sourdough sandwich bread that my kids would eat AND I could do practically all of it in my gazillion dollar bread maker.  I found this FANTASTIC recipe over at The Fresh Loaf.  After making it EXACTLY as TX farmer notes,  in her sandwich loaf recipe mentioned above, and it turning out SUPER,  I decided to tweak it to suit my lazy need to not measure things by weight unless ABSOLUTELY necessary. Here is the outcome of my “2 additional loaves made  already ” adventure.  
        Ingredients 
        Starter Dough

        26g fed Sourdough Starter

        44 g Whole Milk Milk

        82g  AP Flour

        Let sit at around 72 deg overnight (12 hours) 

        Final Dough 

        (in this order in the bread maker, or whatever order your bread maker calls for) 

        1 Starter Dough portion (this is the yeast) 

        4 1/4 cups Flour (AP or 1 cup WW for 1 cup AP) 

        1 Tbs Sugar

        2.5 Tbs Butter

        2 tsp Salt

        In a 2 cup Measuring Cup add the following:

        2 whole eggs

        fill up to 1.5 cup line with Whole Milk 

        Directions 

        Using a bread maker, select a 20 min dough cycle or stop the mixing at 20 minutes 

        or use a mixer with dough hooks… 

        or use your hands. 

        I’m all about equal opportunity baking.  

        Now remove a portion equivalent to the amount of starter dough you added (roughly 1 cup). Set that aside.  Take the main dough and form a ball, place into cover bowl and let sit at room temperature for 2 hours.  Place container in fridge overnight (12 hours). 

        In the meantime for the extra dough you set aside:

        Roll your remaining dough into a thick even log and slice into 6 even pieces. Roll into balls and place on pan or in large 6 count muffin tin.  Cover and let rise for 6 hours or until each ball has almost doubled in size. (fills the muffin cup).  Bake at 350 for 15-20 min until golden brown. 

        Serve warm or store for later snack time. 

        Once the 12 hours has passed:

        Remove main dough from fridge.  You may divide it into two portions for baking ( 2 standard loaf pans or making 2 largish pizza crusts) or if baking in the bread maker don’t divide it (round it to fit nicely in the bread machine pan). 

        For bread loaf(ves) (not pizza crust) 
        Put main dough (whole) into pan,  cover and set aside for 6-8 hours until it has reached the top of the pan edge… maybe a tad bit higher if you are so inclined. I bake it at the pan edge measurement.

        Bread Machine Baking:

        When appropriate height is reached, using bake only function, select 45 minutes and press start. When finished remove and let cool on rack for an hour or 3.

        Oven baking:

        Place shaped loafs into pans and bake in a preheated oven (350 degrees) for 45 minutes until tops are what ever shade of brown you desire. Approximately 45 minutes give or take.
        Pizza crust:

        Take one half or the main dough and roll out to desired shape and thickness. 

        Let rest for about 1-3 hours….basically we’re going for slightly puffy.  

        Punch it down if it gets out of hand. 

        Sourdough is slow and forgiving… 

        …  in my experience. 

        Which is why you’re reading this right?? 

        Moving… on. 

        Top with whatever you enjoy on your pizza and bake it!  

        You may bake it in a preheated oven (350 degrees) or  in a wood burning pizza oven or over a campfire on a flat stone… I won’t judge. 

        Cook it until it looks golden brown around the edges (for 20 minutes or so) … you may find it desirable to use a pizza stone or to put cornmeal on the bottom for extra fanciness. 

        I don’t…  but you might.. and that’s why we’re called INDIVIDUALS. 😂

        Whatever you do,  enjoy gobbling it up at the very least!

        You’re welcome. 

        image

        The Wonders of Yuca (aka cassava) 

        A few months ago a few neighbors came by on different days with various parts (and quantities)  of the yuca  plant for my family.  I was so grateful and a bit overwhelmed with the generosity of this gesture and not quite sure how to handle storing it,  planting it,  using it all before it went bad. 

        Which brings  me to today’s bounty… yuca root!   Locally I sell my homemade bread and yogurt. Some customers pay in cash others pay in trade,  we all benefit from the exchange.   This morning one neighbor showed up with his part of our recent trade, yogurt for yuca, and boy did he bring me a big pile this time!  

        I made a video about chopping it up here

        image

        Adventures in Fermentation – The Ginger & Turmeric Bugs

        Today,  my friend, I am going to let you in on two magical soda making creatures… the ginger and Turmeric bugs! These little bubbling beauties are what you’ll need to begin your soda making adventure!

        I have included two of my favourites posts on how to make a ginger bug below:

        My Beloved Bakery

        Wellness Mama

        I have also recently learned,  from a friend in Australia,  that you can use the very same process above with a turmeric rhizome! How exciting is that??

        I am getting my hands on some turmeric this week and will be back with an update, once  I’ve gotten my self organised.

        In the meantime, go to the store and buy a big ol’ organic ginger rhizome,  some regular white sugar, and start fermenting your new kitchen friend today!

        I’m also going to share a few of the many awesome and delicious recipes of soda you can make with your new baby(ies).

        Wellness Mama’s Ginger Ale

        My Beloved Bakery’s Ginger, Lemon or Strawberry Soda

        And for those not ready to take the leap into fermentation, but still would like a soda substitute that’s healthier, with ingredients you can pronounce or imagine as food,  see these great recipe options.

        My Beloved Bakery’s Quick and Dirty Soda

        She Knows Seltzer Soda

        image

        This post and website contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small percentage if you make a purchase using any of the links you see here. Even if you purchase something other than what is advertised in the link/banner, I will still receive a percentage if you purchase by clicking my links first to shop on their website. Thanks in advance for helping support my family and our adventures!

         

        Adventure in Alternatives to Wheat & Dairy – Wheat Free Bread attempt #1

        Today I present to you my first attempt at making a bread free of wheat! AJM approved and enjoyed her first ham sandwich in a few weeks, since we took her off wheat and dairy products. I decided, after perusing the GF options on the web, to just make my own dang recipe. I gathered some intel on which flours and substitute gluten things do what and went to work. First I got to work making brown rice, almond and oat flour. Next I perused some recipes and got an idea on a binding agent (eggs and ground flax). I combined my flours and flaxseed, threw in some yeast, salt and sugar and mixed together. Then I mixed th eggs and water and made a thick batter. I poured it into a loaf pan and let it rise for a bit. As soon as it looked risen enough, I turned on the oven and baked for half an hour.

        The result? Cake bread!

        image

        AJM is currently enjoying it and BAM approves as well! I’ll probably tweak this recipe next time, but for a first attempt, it’s pretty good!

        image

        This post and website contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small percentage if you make a purchase using any of the links you see here. Even if you purchase something other than what is advertised in the link/banner, I will still receive a percentage if you purchase by clicking my links first to shop on their website. Thanks in advance for helping support my family and our adventures!

        Exploring Wild Fermentation – Sourdough Starter

        Some of you may know how much I just love baking bread.. and cake… cookies… heck cooking food in general seems to have become quite a passion for me. I just love feeding people good food! I don’t mean something all fancy and expensive… I mean delicious good for you food. It therefore came as no surprise that fermentation would eventually find it’s way back into my heart. I’ve made a few things via fermentation in my life.. all with good outcomes and tasty results. I just never really stuck with it until my good friend SM sent me her yogurt maker last year.. and I’ve never looked back. I couldn’t imagine not being able to make such a basic easy food for my family and I don’t have to nowadays!

        image

        Today I’m going to tell you about one of my latest fermentation creations.. my sourdough starter! I just love her bubbly yeasty form sitting so happily in a bowl in my fridge. Honestly I thought there would be some complicated trick to making a starter.

        I’m here to tell you.. there isn’t!

        It is so dang easy.

        All you need is a little time, a little flour, a little water and a warm place to get it started. Instead of recreating the wheel of tutorials, I’m going to send you over to one of my favourite blogs,  The Kitchn. Here you can find a wonderful and easy to follow tutorial on making your own sourdough starter. Emma explains the how’s and why’s of making sourdough. It has beautiful photos of each step and an excellent running commentary at the end with lots of Q&A!
        Here’s a little video of my starter waking up from a nap in the fridge for a few days.

        So if you’ve been waiting for an excuse to use the basic chemistry you learned in school, here’s as good a reason as any. Make a living culture right in your kitchen in a few days! It is a rewarding experience and the kids will really enjoy watching the sourdough starter in action!

        image

        This post and website contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small percentage if you make a purchase using any of the links you see here. Even if you purchase something other than what is advertised in the link/banner, I will still receive a percentage if you purchase by clicking my links first to shop on their website. Thanks in advance for helping support my family and our adventures!

        Homemade – Yogurt with UHT (Shelf Stable) Whole Milk

        image

        For a while I dreamed of making my own yogurt. It seemed a daunting task. Thinking that it would explode if even the smallest outside germ was introduced on an unsanitised spoon or lid, I never ventured forth to fulfill my dreams. Looking back, it seemed such a silly fear. Yogurt is the simplest and most forgiving homemade item I make actually. It’s amazing what a little time can achieve. Below I have compiled a few tutorials I found on the internet, because why reinvent the wheel? These tutorials are well written and include several different ways to make your own yogurt.
        image

        Curious? Read on to see how you can make your own yogurt too!

        A straightforward tutorial with basic household items, you have on hand or can substitute easily:
        Basic Homemade Yogurt Tutorial

        A rather lengthy process with lots of extra ingredients, but good for those who choose a dairy free lifestyle, or are the adventurous yogurt type! 🙂
        Yogurt with a Food Dehydrator

        A video tutorial, using a yogurt maker, for those of use who “ain’t got time for that” reading nonsense. 😉
        Video Yogurt Tutorial

        And finally the easiest method of all, when you just don’t have time for fanciness.. or you’re electricity is out AND it’s pouring rain AND lightning is crackling all around you…. and you need a non electronic, indoor, activity to do with the kids as their homeschooling science AND cooking lesson that day. Oh! Just me then? Hmmm.
        No Heat Yogurt Making Method

        For those of us who prefer thicker set yogurt. Once you’ve chosen a method above and successfully achieve your first batch of yogurt, follow these suggestions below. I have found, using shelf milk, the most successful option has been letting it sit a bit longer, pouring out the extra whey and/or adding a bit of gelatin.
        Thicker Yogurt Options

        image

        My most recent method of yogurt making is the following method. I use shelf stable (UHT) whole milk, because it’s what we have access to at the moment. I do not preheat my milk or yogurt, I found that the shelf milk doesn’t need it. I plan on trying out the no heat method above next. I simply measure out a litre of milk into each cleaned out 2lb peanut butter jar, drop in a frozen yogurt ice cube, set 3 open jars in my my yogurt maker, set the timer for 10 hours, cover it with a huge pot and press start. When the timer goes off, usually at night, I just leave the yogurt undisturbed overnight. By the next morning it is slightly warm still, but cool enough to go right into the fridge.
        image

        image

        This post and website contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small percentage if you make a purchase using any of the links you see here. Even if you purchase something other than what is advertised in the link/banner, I will still receive a percentage if you purchase by clicking my links first to shop on their website. Thanks in advance for helping support my family and our adventures!

         

        Pasta Pizza – Freezer Meal

        image

        In my house there are two things my family just gobbles up; Pizza and Pasta! So I happened upon this idea the other day, when digging through the refrigerator looking for a dinner plan. Why not put pizza and pasta together?!?  I grabbed some curly pasta and tossed it in a pot of boiling water, gave it a quick stir, then turned off the heat as soon as it started boiling again. I left it on the burner, off,  set a timer for 2 minutes longer than the package recommended and moved on to making tomato sauce.

        This can be as simple or complicated as you make it. Some days I’m all about, “how many veggies can I sneak into this sauce and puree?” Other days I’m in a hurry and it’s fairly quick and simple. It all starts with the same old saucepot.

        Today’s sauce was meant to be quick and simple. Into the pan went 2 (3 oz) cans of tomato paste, 3/4 c water (2 canfuls) a pinch of oregano, a pinch of mixed herbs, a tsp of salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, a Tbs of honey, a tsp of vinegar (I use the apple cider variety), 2 chopped tomatoes (pureed with my stick blender when I put them in the pot). I turned the heat to medium,covered the pot and cooked until the sauce had reduced by about 1/4.

        While that was simmering, I peeked through my refrigerator and realized there was a pile of carrots and peppers I needed to use up. I went ahead and shredded a couple carrots and chopped up a pepper, and tossed them into the sauce and headed over to tend the noodles.

        Drained and back in the large pot, I poured the sauce over the noodles and gave them a good mixing with my wooden spoon. I dished out even portions into two 8×8 pans, set the timer on the oven and began setting up the pizza topper.
        image

        The pizza making ingredients I used were, sliced pepperoni and sliced mozzarella. I sprinkled about a cup of mozzarella on top of each pasta pan and finished up with pepperoni. I have a plastic lid that fits over one pan, so I sealed it up and placed it into the freezer.

        image

        The second one I out in my oven at 350 to bake for 15 minutes, then I turned it on to broil until the cheese was golden in some area and served it!

        It was a big success!

        image

        The portion I froze made a delicious meal a few days later, when we had a less than super amount of sun day! The noodles were a bit overdone when I reheated, so next time I’ll leave them in the water for a shorter period of time, cool them completely and cool the tomato sauce completely before adding it to the freezer noodles portion.

        image

        This post and website contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small percentage if you make a purchase using any of the links you see here. Even if you purchase something other than what is advertised in the link/banner, I will still receive a percentage if you purchase by clicking my links first to shop on their website. Thanks in advance for helping support my family and our adventures!