Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Homemade Bread

I have been trying to come up with a catchy title for this bread.
BFF Bread - Best, Fast, and Fabulous Bread
DHF  Bread - Dear Husbands Favorite Bread
FFE Bread - Fantastic Fast Easy Bread
But whatever you call it it's easy, fast and fabulously good bread (EFFG Bread)

3 cups bread flour*
3/4 teaspoon yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 cups water, tap water, lukewarm

In a large bowl stir together dry ingredients, add water and stir to mix.  You're just stirring to get all the flour incorporated into the water.  The dough will be sticky.

Cover with plastic wrap and let stand on the counter for 8 to 18 hours.
(this stood overnight - it is all bubbly and yeasty smelling - that's a good thing)

Use spatula and stir down. Remove from bowl to a floured parchment paper (you could use floured wax paper as well).  Shape with floured hands into a ball on the parchment and let stand for 30 minutes.

While that is resting heat your oven to 450 degrees.  Heat your baking dish right in the oven too.
(I normally use a cast iron pan it's a deep pan, but I have used a glass round casserole dish too.)

when the 30 minutes is up place your bread paper and all into your hot pan.  Cover and bake for 30 minutes, uncover and bake 5 to 15 minutes more depending on your oven.  I bake 8 minutes uncovered to get a beautiful golden brown loaf.

* You could use all-purpose flour as well.  If you do I would add  1 tablespoon of vital wheat gluten.

This is a wonderful loaf of bread.  And so very fast and easy.  It takes a max of 5 minutes to stir the dough up.  I leave it over night to be baked in the morning or stir it up in the morning to be baked to go with supper.  My DH loves this bread and asks for it often.  My kids like it as do the grand-kids.  What an easy crowd pleasing recipe.
a little bird

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Homemade Croutons

Homemade Croutons

We went out to the garden this morning and picked some beautiful leaf lettuce, kale, and fresh dill.  Washed, spun, and mixed; smells so good.  But it needed a bit more to 'fancy it up'.  So homemade croutons were in order.

I have some buns that need to be used up so I cut them up into 1" cubes or there about.
Then sprinkled with with spices and drizzled with olive oil.

6 cups, approximately, day old bread, cubed
Sprinkle with:
Parmesan cheese, 3 to 4 tablespoons
Freshly ground Pepper
Dash of Garlic

Drizzle with olive oil - 1/4 cup or a bit more if needed.

Bake at 375 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes - watch them - you'll know by color when they're done.

They are wonderful!

a little bird

Saturday, June 11, 2016


Today DH and I ran to town for some groceries.  Our local strawberry farm shut down some years back.  The parents had run it for years and decided it was time for them to retire, but their children didn't want to take over... so there you go, no more local strawberry farm.  So now I watch for strawberries at Costco when they come in.  Today was the day.  $7.49 for a gallon.

I bought four gallons. Three gallons became Strawberry Jam.  I did the cook kind so I didn't have to have  pectin.

2 quarts crushed berries (trust me this took the whole gallon)
6 cups of sugar
mix and bring to a slow boil, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves.  Once boiling, continue to boil fairly fast, for 40 minutes. Pour in to your clean jars and process. 15 minutes at sea level, 25 minutes at my altitude in a hot water bath canner.

The last gallon - some is for eating fresh but I also wanted to try this.  I'm storing it in the fridge so it's safe.

The berries are all preserved.  The kitchen is clean again and the dishes are washed and put away. It's late and time for bed.

Happy canning!
a little bid

Friday, June 3, 2016

Dehydrator is busy!

I have been harvesting herbs and drying them for use throughout the year.

I have picked the chamomile three times.  Clipped two bushel of mint, two jars of onions, and dried my oregano and cilantro as well.. 

Chamomile for tea.

Apple Mint also for tea.
Mix the dried mint and chamomile for a wonderfully relaxing tea. Both hot or poured over ice after brewing for a summer heat refresher.
I like 2 parts mint to 1 part chamomile. 

Walking Onions
I love these chopped in my freezer but they are also wonderful for the dehydrator.  Once completely dried to brittle, they store on the shelf in a glass jar.  Anytime I need some onion in soup, I just toss in a handful.  They are full of flavor and such a great addition.

YUM - I love cilantro.  In salsa, taco soup, guacamole, and the list goes on and on...


Great spice for Italian cooking but I have also used this as a tea if I am feeling under the weather. 

The leaf lettuce is up and so are the radishes so our garden has begun to give us summer's bounty.

I hope you are all well and busy 'putting by' the harvest.
a little bird


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