Category Archives: food

april update + sifted

springcleaning

The increase in daylight came just in time for this busy season of life. We are in process of finishing up the sale of our first home, beginning a new business venture, working on getting a garden started, and attempting to keep up with everything else. Boredom is a luxury that just doesn’t exist. We take one day off a week, but other than that, it is full force ahead.

I will be sharing progress photos and information on our new garden/urban homestead, as well as more recipes, photos, and projects. In the meantime, I periodically share some of my favorite internet discoveries in my sifted series. My April collection is listed below. Enjoy!

: : I’m inspired by the results of this planting method. Fruit and nut trees take some time to begin producing, so once we start placing ours we will definitely try speeding up the results with the information given. Check out the video!

: : The strawberries are beginning to flower, and I have found this fun project for the girls and I to try out. Maybe we will get to savor more of our ruby-hued fruit than the birds!

: : I often have leftover brown rice to use up, so I found a Lentil and Brown Rice Soup recipe on Pinterest that has become great way to use the leftovers in a delicious and easy meal. I employ my vegetable broth seasoning recipe to replace the chicken broth, and left out the celery (for some reason I never have celery). Yum!

Advertisements

time for chocolate: the ultimate vegan brownies

IMG_1551title

Since we no longer raise chickens (for now), I have been reluctant to purchase eggs from the grocery store, even organic ones. Instead I have been cutting back our egg consumption until we can keep laying hens again, which can beget some adjustments when it comes to baking.

I’ve tried a variety of vegan brownie recipes. Many times the texture turns out not agreeable (I can be picky about texture). Often the product ends up resembling chocolate cake. Brownies should NOT have a cake-like consistency. Finally, I found THE recipe (because we all need a great brownie recipe in our life). I’ve slightly adapted it from Joanna Vaught’s All-Time Very Best Vegan Brownie Recipe (and it is).

The Ultimate Vegan Brownies

  • 1 + 3/4 cup unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips or chunks
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup boiling water
  • 2 tbsp ground flaxseed + 1/4 cup water
  • 1 + 1/2 cups raw cane sugar
  • 6  tbsp Earth Balance or coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp oil (I used light olive oil)
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

: : Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine the flour and baking soda in a large bowl. In another bowl combine the ground flax seed and 1/4 cup water (NOT the hot water). In a third bowl combine the cocoa powder, chocolate chips/chunks, salt, and boiling water. Mix until the chocolate melts and makes a paste. Add the flax mixture, sugar, Earth Balance, vanilla, oil and combine. Add the wet mixture to the flour and baking soda and mix gently. Fold in the walnuts. Pour into a greased 8×8 pan and bake for approximately 40 minutes, or until the center is done. Remove from oven and cool. Enjoy!

I almost always forget to take pictures after I make a recipe. But it really doesn’t need a picture, it just needs to be tasted

Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. I only recommend products I use myself. Thank you for helping support this blog and our goals for a self-sufficient homestead!

sifted

sifted3

I periodically share some of my favorite internet discoveries in my sifted series. My February collection is listed below. Enjoy!

: : The girls and I have been appreciating more reading time together indoors during this colder, rainy weather (with the addition of our rare few snow days). Some of my/our favorite books to read together include G is for Goat and Mommies Say Shh! I love the illustrations by Patricia Polacco.

: : Though I am not a cauliflower fan, I tried this vegan Cauliflower Fettuccine Alfredo recipe and loved it! The sauce is creamy and delicious. I used my vegetable broth seasoning recipe for the 3 cups of vegetable broth in the ingredients.

: : Our interest in homesteading and sustainable living has us excited about the 2014 Sustainable Preparedness Expo in Portland May 18th. I hope to attend and learn from all the workshops and training sessions available!

Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. I only recommend products I use myself. Thank you for helping support this blog and our goals for a self-sufficient homestead!

vegetable broth seasoning recipe

IMG_7587text

I’ve been wanting to share some of the experiments happening in my kitchen lately. I have been working on expanding our basic meal plans to include more variety, whilst using up our staple pantry items. But, before I divulge some of our favorite recipes I am including instructions for an ingredient I often use as a base for our meals.

: : ingredients : :

Directions : : Place ingredients in food processor and whiz until combined and the larger flakes have processed to a finer grain. Store in a container or jar and use approximately 1 tsp per 1 cup of water in recipes calling for vegetable broth.

Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. I only recommend products I use myself. Thank you for helping support this blog and our goals for a self-sufficient homestead!

cashew block cheese – a homemade, dairy-free alternative

cashewcheese

Our family has been transitioning to a dairy-free diet. I can’t say that we are vegan as we still ingest organic eggs and honey, but we prefer to avoid consuming cheese especially.

One of our staples is homemade pizza. I like my veggies, but I desired something more creamy and nutty as a topping. Many of the vegan cheeses on the market are just not an option to us, and I like to control what ingredients go into my food, so I searched for a homemade alternative. I wanted something that would be adequately solid so that I can shred it. I have tried cashew pimento cheese sauces and was not impressed with the results.

After discovering the following recipe online and experimenting I am happy to say that pizza night will continue in our household!

Cashew Block Cheese (adapted slightly from Karen’s Vegan Kitchen)

  • 1 tbsp agar powder
  • 1 + 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1 + 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • + spices of your choice and/or chopped jalapeños

Lightly grease small bowl.

Grind cashews to a fine powder using food processor. Add lemon juice, sesame oil, nutritional yeast, sea salt, and spices and process until smooth.

Bring agar and water to a boil in saucepan. Continue boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add mixture from food processor. Mix until smooth and creamy. Pour mixture into greased bowl and allow to cool. Move to fridge and allow to chill.

IMG_5157cashewcheese