Wednesday, October 21, 2009

There's Nothing Like the Smell of Homemade Bread

Ten Years ago when I was pregnant with my first son and couldn't sleep, I taught myself how to make bread. Five years later a friend shared her recipe with me. I've improved upon it, and have had dozens of people tell me it's the best they've ever tasted. Now I'm so spoiled, I can't even stand the smell of store bought bread, much less the taste. So, every week, I pull out my wheat grinder and my Bosch kitchen mixer and make five loaves of bread. In the summer, i make bread twice a week. So, here's my recipe:

Honey Whole Wheat Bread

3 1/2 cups red wheat flour
3 1/2 cups white wheat flour
6 cups warm water
3 tablespoons SAF instant yeast
3 tablespoons dough enhancer
2 table spoons sea salt
2 cups bread flour
2/3 cup canola oil
2/3 cup honey

Mix together to make a batter.
Add by cup fulls:
7 more cups of half white wheat flour and half red wheat flour.

Knead for 8 minutes. Pour out onto oiled counter, and shape into 5 loaves. Spray 5 loaf pans with nonstick spray. Put loaves into pans and bake in preheated 350 degrees Fahrenheit oven for 30 minutes. Turn out loaves onto cooling rack or towel. You can butter the tops while they are still hot, if you wish.

I'd love to hear what you think about this recipe, if you try it.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Easy Quick Quiche

I love making quiche, but I hate doing the dishes. One night while sauteing the onions and garlic in a cast iron skillet, I wondered if I could just add the meats, vegetables, egg mixture and cheese all in the same pan and bake that in the oven. It turned out beautifully, and I didn't have to wash the extra pie dish and bowl from making the crust. One if the secrets to cooking cheaply, is to make everything from scratch. This often makes the process more time consuming, and you have a lot more dishes to deal with.
This quiche uses evaporated milk instead of cream. I haven't noticed a difference in flavor or texture, and canned milk can be kept in the pantry, and is a lot cheaper.
So, here's the basics:

1 medium diced onion
3 garlic cloves
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp butter
1/2 tsp salt

Melt butter and olive oil in large cast iron or steel pan. Use a pastry brush to coat the sides of the pan. This will ensure that your quiche will not stick to the sides of the pan, when you're ready to serve it. Saute onion for about two minutes. Add garlic and salt. The salt not only seasons the dish, but also helps the onions to release their juices. Saute until onion is soft and begins to turn brown. This is called carmelization, and you'll notice a big difference in flavor from the onions.

1 Cup steamed broccoli
10 spears of steamed asparagus

Taking the pan off the heat, arrange the vegetables evenly in the pan.

1/4 lb sliced ham
2-6oz or 1-12 oz can(s) of salmon (no bones or skin)

Arrange meat evenly in the pan.

In medium sized bowl, whisk 7 eggs, 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper, 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg, 1-12oz can evaporated milk.
Pour mixture over top of vegetables and meat.

Place 1/4 Lbs sliced or grated Swiss cheese over top.

Bake in 350 degree oven for about 45 to 50 minutes, or until center doesn't giggle when pan is shaken.
Let sit and cool for about 10 minutes before slicing.

I would have loved to post a picture, but it looks like the kids have taken off with my camera again!

Saturday, April 18, 2009


I had a conversation with Mom today. She told me that her friend was telling her that she doesn't like the sugarless yogurts that are on the market. She expressed that the good ones were too expensive. Mom told her she can easily make her own. Mom learned this from me. There are several things that I've learned while trying to save on the grocery bill. Making yogurt is just one of them. I also make my own bread and make substitutions for expensive ingredients.
Since I've had some friends express interest. I thought I'd start this blog and share my knowledge and recipes.
So, to introduce myself, I am a stay at home mother of 5 children. My eldest is 9 and my youngest is 7 months. I am a self proclaimed foodie! I'm such a snob when it comes to food, yet, I don't have an unlimited budget to work with. So, I get creative and do research to satisfy my palate. Sometimes the kids like what I make and sometimes they don't.
I hope you enjoy reading about my food adventures.