Sunday, February 28, 2010

GMO - Activist Information

Personal note from me before you read any of this.  If you have had a lot of GMO's in your diet, or are struggling with some of the terrible side effects, I really believe that you can correct much of the problems by changing your diet.  We are "fearfully and wonderfully made" and have mechanism's in our system, placed there by God.  They just need the right nutrients, some time and some energy to work.

Don't roll around in self pity or hopelessness, instead, change your diet and your families way of eating.  This is dead serious stuff though, please spend some time studying it.  It is important.

No GMO Activist Information

Some of you know that I have been following the GMO story for years.  It is a long, troubling, terrible story of power, money, corruption and borderline insanity.  If you have been following this story, and are persuaded that GMO's are endangering our food supply, our healthy children, our mental abilities and our reproductive capacity, you don't need to read further in this note.  I would, however, encourage you to become activists.  Wherever you land on the political scale..... fight WITH one another to stop this evil, awful perverse ruination of our food.

The best way you can fight is to NOT purchase ANYTHING that contains GMO's.... and contact companies that you used to do business with or purchase products with and tell them why.  If the top 10 American companies shifted away from GMO's, it would change the future.

To help with this, I would like to pass on some very helpful stuff.  The first is an I-Phone app.  It gives you a list of companies that refuse to use GMO's in their processing.    Type in ShopNoGMO and the free app will come up.  You can also go to this website and print up a list of foods that are and are not made with GMO's.  I have printed a bunch of them and will hand them out and take them with me to the store.

The website for this is:  Non GMO Shopping Guide

For those people willing to be genuine activists, there is an excellent website.  I MUST warn everyone.  This group has people from all corners of the political spectrum.  There are folks from the far, far left to the far, far right and everywhere in between.  We all share a common goal of a safe food supply.  Please make allowances for philosophical differences and focus on what is important.  This is a good plan.  Their website can be found at the first link and their information page at the second link.

If you are on Facebook, they have a No GMO's Fan Page which you can join.

Now, if you are unsure about GMO's and the damage that they can do, I would like to list a bunch of articles.  All I am going to say personally is that, in my opinion, GMO's are terrible.  Anyone with young children or in their child bearing years, or anyone who wishes to have optimal health should spend some time studying the effects of GMO's.

If you think that ANY regulatory agency is responsible for keeping your food, your medicine or your health safe, you are naive.  The regulatory agencies tend to have an absolutely incestuous relationship with the corporations and industries that they should be regulating.  Most of them are run by career bureaucrats, not elected officials.   Please, do NOT take my word for any of this.  It is your responsibility to keep your family as safe, as happy and as healthy as possible and you need to know the damage these insidious food products cause.

Sadly, the information we are now acquiring is not based on animal testing.  World populations are the test group.  Spending time on this subject again brought me to probably one of the most appalling quotes I have ever heard.
“Maybe the GM soy will solve
the overpopulation problem.”
 Dr. Mercola, as well as many other groups, have published quite a few articles over the past several months. The reason much of this is coming out is apparently a court case which was won and required the publication of some clinical trials.  I tried to research it myself, but it was overwhelming.  I am going to just post some of Dr. Mercola's articles for sake of consistency.  He might have some pop up ads, if so, I apologize.  I  went ahead and joined the site because of the wonderful articles.  I have found NOTHING in his articles to disagree with... on the GMO issue (unusual for me) and he is a good, clear concise writer.   I have stuff posted on the GMO issue by other authors as well.  You can find it under the GMO label.

One last personal note from me.  The FDA had all this information, and probably more.  Don't allow government officials to tell you what is healthy and what is not.  You need to make wise decisions for your family and loved ones based on knowledge.  You should never just swallow a decree by a bureaucrat.  Be persuaded by facts based on genuine research, not the rigged, bought and paid for stuff they call research.  Deuteronomy 31:6 gives us direction. 
"Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the LORD your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”

So, here is some further reading for anyone that wants to be educated on this subject.  Probably the most evil of all is what GMO's do to reproductive development.  There are two articles on this subject, one an overview, one focusing on reproductive and organ failure.  Please go to the first article and scroll down.  Observe the close up of the rat testicles fed gmo and non gmo, and the cell pattern below it.  It is pretty amazing.

I don't know if the high incidence of retardation, development problems or infant mortality are in any of these articles, but should be looked at as well.

Organ and Reproductive Failure

One of the more perverse aspects appears to be what happens to young children exposed to GMO's.  Is it pure evil that one of the first uses of a genetically modified food was infant formula made with GM soy?  Without testing (that we know of).   Certainly without oversight from anyone that cared.  This article has some excerpts from "Genetic Roulette" and some good info on what can happen to kids fed GM foods.

This one covers some of the intimidation used on the researchers who tried to sound the alarm early on.  These are just a few... there were more.

This next one covers the fine art of rigging studies.  A true art form if you ask me.  Not for the novice thug, it takes genuine professionalism.  Luckily, there appears to be plenty of that to go around.

This next article shows some of the enormous influence of Monsanto over Washington D.C.  One man was with the FDA under George Bush, Sr..... and appointed back by Obama.  He worked at Monsanto between times.  Conflict of interest?  It is all over Washington.

We have shipped our evil wares all over the globe.  Our regulators labeled them safe without due diligence.  The headlines in this article cover;  Covering up Health Dangers, Fake Safety Assessments, Promoting and Regulating don't Mix, Evaluations miss most health problems, Hidden information, lack of standards, breaking law and Humans as Guinea Pigs.

Last, but certainly not least, is a warning on the danger of GMO's from the medical profession.

I think that is all that I can take of this for now.  I can only go back to this every so often.  It is depressing.  For our family, we grow as much of our food as we can using heirloom seeds.  We buy local and organic from people who live in our community and are like minded.  We make an effort to purchase from organic and Non GMO companies (even if I disagree with their politics) and we avoid genetically modified foods like the poison that they are.  Eating out is difficult. 

For the most part, be aware that highly processed food in any form should be suspect.  If it doesn't rot, don't eat it.  Study, learn, be alert and aware, be proactive, be responsible for your families health.

Best of Health to You

Friday, February 26, 2010

The House around the Corner - Raw Milk Ice Cream

Lynette's House
Ice Cream from Raw Milk (yum)

Lynette's House has been a raw milk house for a long, long time.  She has a lot of recipes, and is sharing some of them with us.  Her ice cream is really good and I am looking forward to this special treat this summer!

Ice Cream: Beat Until frothy: 3 eggs, 1 1/2 c. Sugar (honey is good too, or a combination), 1/4 tsp. salt. Add: 5 1/2 cups raw milk, 2 cups cream, 3 Tbsp Vanilla. Pour into ice cream maker and follow freezing directions. When its done freezing you can add anything else you'd like. We love adding a package of frozen raspberries. Our ice cream maker holds 1 gallon.

The House around the Corner - Eggs Benedict

 Eggs Benedict
from Lynette

Eggs Benedict (easy): Have ready in blender or food processor: 3 egg yolks, 1 Tbls. lemon juice, pinch of cayenne, 1/4 tsp. salt.  Heat 1/2 cup butter to bubbling stage.  With the food processor running slowly pour in the hot butter (much like making mayonaise).  That's IT.  I like to then pour it into a glass measuring cup and keep in warm in a bowl of hot water.

Lynette's family had an awesome breakfast this morning: Eggs benedict with homemade hollandaise sauce, sprouted english muffins, poached eggs and bacon from Papas homegrown organic piggy.

Thanks Lynette for sharing the idea and the recipe.


Raw Milk vs. Homogenized and Pasteurized Milk

The learning curve for Raw Milk has been steep for me.  I came here kicking and screaming and is has never really been on my agenda until I started researching it for the fats portion of this blog.  Amazingly, we are becoming absolute raw milk advocates.  I am still finding this a little hard to believe, but here we are, actually looking into getting a milk cow (or two... or three!)

Here is a page with numerous links for raw milk.  Not to overwhelming, but good information.  It has links to both sides of the raw milk argument.  I have been reading a lot on both sides of the issue and what has bubbled to the surface is not pretty.  I am going to have to quit reading all of these great articles, although it is fascinating.  I know this is getting to be a lot  :)
As far as the raw milk vs. pasteurized and homogenized argument goes, it appears that a healthy cow, eating grass, taken care of, and careful milking, cooling and handling of the milk provides a healthy, nutritious product.  Raw milk also appears to be the second most contraband item in the United States, right behind illegal drugs.  Go figure.

If you feed your herds garbage (or an unnaturally large amount of grains), have manure everywhere, disgusting things going into the milk (blood, pus..... you get the idea) you might need to pasteurize your milk products so as not to poison everyone drinking the milk.  

If you want to ship your milk product over long distances, have them keep "fresh" for an unnaturally long time, and are completely OK with destroying anything live in your milk product, then the entire pasteurization and homogenization process is right up your alley.

If the idea of complete fats is a puzzle to your dairy, and cream rising to the top of the milk is bothersome to your marketing department, then you definitely want to homogenize that milk!   It completely destroys the fat molecules, so they can never, never be reunited the way God intended.  But you don't have that cream issue to deal with and can sell more product.  A quote from the soda pop article below is intriguing... I am trying to find the studies, but here is the quote.
[You might find it interesting that, as demonstrated in numerous studies, calves fed pasteurized milk die within 60 days.]
We are blessed here in California to have Organic Pastures Dairy.  As I have been studying in depth on this issue, their name came up again and again and again as a model for the state, the country and the world.  They are amazing advocates for clean, wholesome, raw milk.  Their processing is outstanding and  they are passionate about providing this wonderful food to the public.  

It is a continual fight to keep raw milk safe, legal and available in California.  It is always under assault.  I still can't figure out why that is.  When other foods are found to be unsafe, they deal with the individual supplier, not make the entire food illegal.  With milk, however, it is different.  I still don't know why.  I assume it comes down to the same thing as always.  Money and power.

I do know that, in general, when one side just has a bunch of names like "stupid"  "crazy"  "mindless" and goes on and on with the whole "don't you know what's good for you" thing..... it's bad.  The case against raw milk involves a lot of that.  They also have had very few actual, proven instances of death, disease or problems.  There are some, just like in any food based industry.  You should compare that to people with problems with non-raw milk.... oh, we don't want to give out THOSE numbers.

Finally, for those study hounds who want to know the COMPLETE history of the milk pasteurization movement, here is an in depth article containing a history of how we got here.  A quote from the article:

The story of what’s happened to quality milk is the same as the story of what’s happened to America’s farmers. Both have been mostly eliminated, marginalized by a culture that has allowed corporations to promote the big lie that the processing of natural foods has nothing to do with the epidemic of disease that cripples our society. Corporate spokespersons for the food, drug and medical industries have used billions of dollars (a drop in the bucket compared to their profits) to convince most of us that this scam has been carried out for our own good. The corporations and their media and government lackeys proclaim "food safety," while in truth allowing our food supply to be nutritionally depleted, further contaminated, and fostering unsustainability of food sourcing.

I don't ever want to make any decisions for anyone.  Just take a little time while we are in fats and study the raw vs. other on milk.  Check into what the laws are in your state or country.  Can you be proactive in bringing free choice?

One final quote from the Soda Pop article (it is really, really in depth and so good).

Whether one drinks milk at all is a personal choice. The point herein is not to convince anyone to drink clean, healthy raw milk, but rather, as with my related articles, that true health can only be facilitated by getting beyond the industrial agenda based manipulation that permeates our society. Only with sufficient unbiased information, and free choice, can we begin to dig ourselves out of the destructive chronic illness plaguing our quality of life.

Finally, this has been here before (on gut health), but it is still so good I wanted to put it include it again.
A Word About Diet In General

Use common sense and stick with whole, unprocessed foods, free from genetic tweaking (there's still just too much conflicting information out there on that topic), and you'll likely be ahead of the game.

Cook your foods minimally, and you'll be even better off. Learn about sprouting and fermentation. Question everything before letting it past your lips. 
Explore what worked for countless generations before ours, and put it to work for yourself today. You can achieve great health by diet alone. I've done it, and so can you!

Best of health to you,

The House around the Corner - Raw Milk Stories

 The Lucky Cousins

     When I was a child we drank fresh (raw) cows milk. I remember my mother scooping the cream from the top of the milk and making delicious butter and whipping cream. My mother and father always said we were not allergic to poison oak because the cows ate the plant as they grazed in the fields and woods near our home; we would then drink their milk so our system developed an immunity. My cousins, who did not drink raw milk, were often covered with the red rash caused by coming in contact with the plant that grows abundantly in our county. When I was young, if you had enough of the poison oak rash, you were not allowed to attend school because it was considered very contagious. I remember once, my cousin was out of school for a week, I was in about 3rd grade and wanted to stay home from school and spend the day with my mother. I went to the edge of the woods behind our home and found myself some poison oak.

     You can imagine what happened next, I stripped the plant of several handfuls of leaves and rubbed it ALL OVER MYSELF...I crushed the leaves and rubbed it on my skin, I broke the branches and used the sap, I found a cut and put some in it...okay, I wasn‘t a very bright child, but I was determined. I was very proud of myself and went back to the house and waited for the itching to begin…I waited...and went to school, the next day, I waited and went to school, the next day, I went to school and decided that my cousins were lucky to have parents who didn't give them fresh cows milk.

     I don't know if there is in fact scientific proof about developing this immunity, but Dad and Mom said so...and that's good enough for me. If you enjoy drinking fresh cows milk, I don't suggest you research in the same manner I did so long ago.

Take Care,
Sherri Ann

The House Around the Corner - Becky's House

Becky's Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls
with cultured cream cheese frosting

2 cups of warm water
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons dry yeast
1 cup of sourdough starter
2 eggs
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 coconut oil
6 to 7 cups of flour

Dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Let sit for a minute or two. Add the sugar and salt. Mix. Add the oil, 2 eggs, sourdough starter, 2 cups of flour and beat until smooth.

Stir in 3 more cups of flour. Begin kneading the dough, adding the final cup of flour. If the dough seems too sticky, knead in more flour, a quarter to a half cup at a time.
(I do all of this in my Kitchen Aid in about 5 min.)

Let the dough "rest" for 15 to 20 minutes.

Roll the dough into a rectangle that's 24 to 30 inches long by about 16 inches wide. Spread with a mixture of soft butter, cinnamon, brown sugar and vanilla. Starting at the wide end, roll into a log.

Cut the cinnamon rolls into equal sized slices (approximately one inch wide each or slightly more) and place into two greased 9x13 pans. Put in a warm place to rise for 45 minutes.

Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes (or until the cinnamon rolls are golden brown).

Allow to cool for 5 minutes and then smooth the cream cheese frosting over them.

This recipes makes two dozen cinnamon rolls. If you want REALLY BIG cinnamon rolls, cut into 12 equal pieces 2 inches wide.

Total amount of time needed from start to finish (including time to bake) is about 2 hours.

Cream Cheese frosting:
About 1 cup of homemade cream cheese.
1 cup powdered sugar
1 TBL vanilla

Whip together until smooth and spread over warm cinnamon rolls.


Thursday, February 25, 2010

Ramble in the Woods - Grammie Time and Aprons

Our Grandson, almost two, was up today.  He helped his Dad and Papa prune the orchard, chased and screamed at chickens, played with the dog, did some school with his uncle who is eight and generally ran hard til lunch time.  After lunch, he had such a good nap.

When he woke up, he snuggled in the chair with me and then fell asleep again.  What a precious time.  Every minute of every day seems to have at least fifteen things demanding your attention.  The laundry is sitting there ready to be folded (it is still there glowering at me), dinner was calling, floors and office work... always there.

Instead, we snuggled in Grammy's big chair for over an hour while he slept.  His uncle is reading "The Secret Garden" and it happened to be sitting there.  I picked it up and spent the time happily back in Mary's Secret Place..... humming to baby and myself.

I am reminded why our household is making so many changes.  Giving your precious family the best possible opportunity for health, happiness, contentment with simplicity, the joy of the Lord and love is of great value.   Raising an abundantly healthy family in a toxic world is worth striving for.

The opportunity to sit and snuggle and reflect is good.  I have been thinking about investing in some Grammy aprons and found this cool poem..... for no particular reason except that I want my family to have wonderful memories of spending time here and I remember both of my Grandma's apron's vividly.

Be blessed with your family tonight.  Give the kids an extra hug.  Look them in the eye and remind them how much you love 'em.  God is good all the time.

"Grandma's Apron"

When I used to visit Grandma. I was very much impressed,
by her all-purpose apron, and the power it possessed.
For Grandma, it was everyday to choose one when she dressed.
The strings were tied and freshly washed, and maybe even pressed.
The simple apron that it was, you would never think about;
the things she used it for, that made it look worn out.
She used it for a basket, when she gathered up the eggs,
and flapped it as a weapon, when hens pecked her feet and legs.
She used it to carry kindling when she stoked the kitchen fire.
And to hold a load of laundry, or to wipe the clothesline wire.
She used it for a hot pad, to remove a steaming pan,
and when her brow was heated, she used it for a fan.
It dried our childish tears, when we'd scrape a knee and cry,
and made a hiding place when the little ones were shy.
Farm produce took in season, in the summer, spring and fall,
found its way into the kitchen from Grandma's carry all.
When Grandma went to heaven, God said she now could rest.
I'm sure the apron she chose that day, was her Sunday best.
(author unknown)

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A Ramble in the Woods - Ginger Ale

Today I was able to make up some of our all time favorite ginger ale/juice mixtures.  Blood oranges, juiced and ran through a sieve, mixed 1 to 1 with ginger ale.  It is not watered down because our family enjoys the bold, bright taste.

Our favorite!

The Extra Step - Phase 2 - Continuing Education Raw Milk

The raw milk journey continues:

The Weston A. Price Foundation has a lot of good information on raw milk and its products.  There is a great page showing different recipes and different information on unheated vs. heated yogurt.  I have not yet tried any of these, but plan to begin as soon as I can get the bread, kvass, ginger ale, sauerkraut, kefir, butter stuff completely under control....

OK, that is never going to happen.  :)  So... probably next week will bring several yogurt recipes to the kitchen (focus, focus).  If anyone would like to try some of these and send me pictures and how it turned out, how you used it and ways to work it into your busy lives...... We would all appreciate it. 

Here it the article.

Also from the site is a good breakdown of raw milk in general and is a great overview.

I think my favorite site is the Modern Country Dairy site.  They have a lot of great stuff.  I found a good explaination for why lactose intolerant people can often drink raw milk.  This is on their page titled Top Ten Reasons for drinking raw milk.  Even if you have been there before, it is well worth going again.

A couple of quotes:

According to the Weston A. Price Foundation, "Pasteurization destroys enzymes, diminishes vitamin content, denatures fragile milk proteins, destroys vitamins C, B12 and B6, kills beneficial bacteria, promotes pathogens and is associated with allergies, increased tooth decay, colic in infants, growth problems in children, osteoporosis, arthritis, heart disease and cancer."

Often people who consider themselves to be "lactose intolerant" are able to enjoy raw milk because it contains "lactase." Lactase is one of the enzymes that get destroyed during pasteurization. It normally would pre-digest the milk while in the stomach, thereby enabling the body to assimilate its nutrients. Pasteurization forces the milk to enter the lower intestines undigested, resulting in cramps and gas.
The difference is night and day. Supermarket milk is highly manipulated and engineered. It's pasteurized, or heated to about 161 degrees for about 15 seconds, which destroys the bacteria that cause food borne illness, along with the flavor of milk. Pasteurization by this method gives it a fairly long shelf life. [Milk is also] homogenized which smashes all the fat globules and makes it uniform and smooth, while wiping out all the thick lovely cream that floats to the top. Then that milk travels a long way, often thousands of miles, to get to us.
Raw milk is rich with enzymes and contains all 22 of the essential amino acids which are the building blocks of life, including phosphate. Phosphate is essential for the absorption of calcium and is plentifully present in raw milk but is completely destroyed by pasteurization
 Again, I would highly recommend this site. 

Figure out what is best for your family.  Make your decisions one at a time, and try to find a workable way to get the process in place.  If you live somewhere that does not allow raw milk, you might try to find a "co-op" or neighbor that has cows or goats and work something out.

The nutritional value of raw milk vs. homoginized and pasturized milk just cannot be overstated.  This is such an important item in the Nourishing Traditions... the Weston A. Price Foundation.... Nutrition and Degenerative Disease.... all of these wonderful resources consider raw milk from grass fed cows to be the backbone of health.

Please pass on what you have learned.  Remember that we are a community of friends, learning from each other, sharing joys and failures, helping to destroy our dependence on Agribusiness, Big Pharma, the Medical Industry........  In a community we support each other where we can, but are primarily responsible for our own family.  Step up to this responsibility, don't overwhelm yourself, make the best choice you can and keep moving.

The picture has nothing to do with milk.... The Junior Rancher and Baby Rancher are learning their States and Capitals this morning.  I just liked the picture.  We did have to interrupt this fine lesson so Grammie could kiss every "boo boo" Baby Rancher had. 

Best of Health to You

The Extra Step - Phase 2 - More Raw Milk Information

In our continuing education on raw milk, this very interesting study came my way.  It is a very in-depth study, but I think it is worth the time to read it (or at least skim portions of it).  Remember that grass fed cows put out a completely different milk than grain fed cows.  Be sure you know what your raw milk cows are eating.  It appears that hay in the winter is OK as well.  If you are short on time, you might want to skim through the first part to the meat of the article, in the middle and the end.

A couple of my favorite things from this study:

"3. What are the additional benefits of milk fresh from the cow?

Milk fresh from the cow is a complete, living, functional food.  Although we have looked at the numerous nutritional components of milk in the previous two questions, the full benefits of milk are only realized when all of these components function as a complex interdependent and balanced process. 
Proteins are incrementally denatured by heat. With lower heat treatment levels, complex proteins with three-dimensional configuration are altered. With higher heat treatment levels, the primary shape and bonds are altered. At very high heat levels, there are destructive chemical changes.
This is complex because changes to the fat globules, specifically the membranes, are caused by both heat and homogenization. Of all the milk constituents, the milk fat globule is the most drastically altered by the combination of pasteurization and homogenization.

The emphasis above is mine.  I strongly recommend you spend a little time reading this wonderful information.

Best of Health to you

New (old) Bread Pans


My sister, who loves to shop at thrift stores, found me three glass bread pans.  It was pretty exciting.  Shopping is one of my least favorite things, but I sure wanted to try some of these cool bread recipes in glass pans.  Thanks much.

Using a tip from Mountain Home Quilts worked well.  The tip was to let the bread rise in a cooler place.

The idea of always shifting your bread process in small, managable chores has also been working in our overbusy household.  This tip comes from an old, old recipe and is probably how pioneer women functioned.

So..... step one - the sponge goes into the Kitchenaid along with the rest of the ingredients... step two -  form up the loaves... step three - rub the insides of the pans with olive oil and coat the top with more olive oil....  step four - cover with a damp cloth (this one is from Evelyn Fields).   These four steps took about ten minutes for all three loaves.  (no dishes yet)

Right after that it was time for remaking the sponge for the next batch of bread and making up some tortilla dough.  (Tortilla dough recipe here)  Again, this step took only about 10 minutes for each process, then nothing more to be done until time to bake.  (after making new sponge and tortilla dough... now wash the dishes and counter and put everything away - ONCE)

I did this on Saturday and today (Wednesday) I plan to take the sponge which is quite sour now and redo this entire process.  I did put the sponge in a cool place.  If it is too sour, I will just add a little more flour and water.  This is how I am coping with too many cultures going on in one house. 

Current Bread Recipe at our house
subject to change as soon as I read the bread book I swiped from my sister :)

Community Sourdough Bread
(Community means none of these ideas are mine... just a gathering)

The Sponge
1 cup sourdough starter
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 cups barley flour
2 cups white flour
1/2 cup flax meal
2 Tbsp. sesame seeds
1 cup kefir
Water to make it a slurry

Just bring this together, it is not necessary to knead it.  Put it into a bowl, cover with a wet towel and let rise until double in volumne (probably about 10-12 hours - longer is OK)

The Dough
The sponge from before
any tortilla dough left over
2 tsp. sea salt
3 Tbsp. Olive oil
2 Tbsp. sweetner (Palm Sugar)
Flour to make a slightly sticky dough

Form into your loaf and let rise again.  I put my loaf glass pans with olive oil in them and rubbed oil on the top.  This makes the crust nicer.  The dough should double in volume.  It often takes several hours.
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.  
I like to either spritz water in or put a small pan of water in.
It gives your crust a nice feel.  
A stone is nice, but it is not necessary.
Bake at 400 for about 30 minutes, then turn down the over to 325 degrees for approximately 15-25 minutes.  The times will vary depending on your loaf size and density.
There are two ways to check and see if it done....
a thermometer inserted - 210 degrees
.... or turn the loaf over and tap the bottom...
if it sounds hollow, it is done.
When I take it out I either immediately run the loaf under water or put butter on the top.  
This makes it a lot easier to cut.
If I missed any tips, someone let me know.  Right now it is all about making this process work in our lives.


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Raw Milk Legal Victory - Canada

Legal Victory in Canada!
subject: Raw Milk

There is a great news article on a raw milk victory in Canada.  We have some Canadian friends on this blog, and it is good to rejoice whenever a little guy providing healthy, nutrient dense food wins.

I don't know the law for excerpting from other sites... so here are a couple of paragraphs.  Please go read the article.  Right now we should begin an in - depth focus of raw milk and its benefits, so it is certainly timely.

Schmidt was found not guilty on 19 charges related to providing raw milk: While Canadian law allows the consumption of raw milk, its sale and distribution has been illegal in the country since 1938, authorities fearing that it could contain bacteria that may pose a risk to public health.

Schmidt operates a 150-cow dairy co-operative venture, in which members own part of a cow in order to acquire raw milk. The scheme was ruled not to be a violation of public health rules as there is no selling or marketing of the product, and because Schmidt distributes only to the cow shareholders and not the general public.

For any Canadian friends, I would encourage you to contact your representatives (I don't know your legal system, but assume you have a representative type of government) and encourage the legality of raw milk to those who wish to have it.  There are links at the bottom for petitions and resources.

The stats on the end of the article were certainly intriguing....... how many people were sickened by raw milk (0) vs. how many people died from  listeriosis contamination (dozens)... of the government approved, dead, lifeless, worthless, wretched.... sorry, got carried away... milk.

Anyway, the article was enjoyable and well written.  Personally, we are actively looking into finding a milk cow.  Our entire family is excited by this prospect (except perhaps Papa who has had a milk cow before and remembers the work).

I would like to throw out a suggestion.  If you are interested in raw milk you should find out if someone you know has a cow.  If so, they would probably appreciate regularly scheduled time off in exchange for milk.  Perhaps your family could milk one to two times per week on a regular basis in exchange for milk.... and maybe take over for vacation time.  Just a suggestion.  A milk cow is day in-day out work and regular time off seems like a good trade.

Here is the article.  Enjoy


Monday, February 22, 2010

The House Around the Corner - Bread Tip

Tip on getting your bread higher.... not flatter

Awesome idea from my friend April on sourdough bread.  She has been trying to eliminate the "flatbread" thing that is no fun for anyone.  Here is her discovery...

I've hit upon a genius idea...surround the rising loaf with the sides of a springform pan! Ha!...... April

Thanks April for sharing that very good idea.  I am going to try it out.


Saturday, February 20, 2010

Weston A. Price

There was a really wonderful short video on Facebook today.  It is a video of Weston A. Price in 1936.  You can see and hear him in his own voice.  The web site seems really good as well, but I have not been on it very much.  The video is interesting.  You can see and hear yourself some of Dr. Price's ideas.

This book had enormous influence on me.  Sally Fallon's book Nourishing Traditions is based on the work by Dr. Price.  After watching this video, I plan to skim back through his book, so now it is at the top of the stack of books.  I am so grateful to him for preserving these records and for being so thorough and accurate.

The foundation that continues his work has so much good information.  It is a blessing to have that kind of resource available.  You can find the foundation at the following link.  This is a link to Dr. Price's biography, but they have research, article, ideas and other things on their site.  Spend some time there if you can.
The biograpy on the following link seems really good.  It covers the scientific method of Dr. Price.  There is also some good information on lacto fermented foods.

If you are ever able to read this book, I would highly recommend it.  No one should need to give any explanation..... it is as clear as it can possibly be.

Best of health to you,

Ginger Chews

Today was a misty, cold day with wreaths of fog trailing around the hills.  Not quite raining... a perfect day for baking.  We have been trying to find things to do with the cultured ginger that is left after we make ginger ale.  Today we tried ginger chews.  It was a nice way to spend the afternoon.

I had some good help in the kitchen.... the Junior Rancher found the recipe, got out the ingredients, measured all the dry stuff and helped me eat them!  It is good to have help.  I think Papa is going to like these.  We definitely have a new family favorite.

Here is the recipe, if anyone wants to try it.  (note from Cindy.... This cookie is a little sweet for us.  It is OK... one at a time with tea or coffee.  The next time I make it I will probably cut the palm sugar by 1/2 a cup and add a bit more grated ginger and orange zest.... but still good cookies,) 

(Further note from #1 son.... the cookies are PERFECT - Don't change the recipe)


4 3/4 cup flour
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp fresh grated ginger (I used cultured)
2 tsp orange zest
1/2 tsp cloves
1 tsp salt
3 1/2 tsp baking soda
2 cups Palm Sugar
1 cup butter
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup molasses
1 tsp. vanilla
Powdered Sugar

Sift together flour, cinnamon, ginger, orange zest, cloves, salt and soda. Set aside. Cream sugar and butter. Stir in eggs, molasses and vanilla. Add dry ingredients and mix. Chill dough 1-2 hours. Roll into walnut sized balls and dip in sugar. Place on greased baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes.

All of the ingredients were organic and we used cultured ginger left from making ginger ale.  I just peeled it and ran it over my microplane grater.

Serving suggestion:  Have some warm cookies with a glass of raw milk!


The Little Rancher mixing the ingredients
The final dough.......... and the finished cookies!

We decided to store some away in Evelyn Fields snack bags for Papa's lunch on Monday!

The House Around the Corner - Crystallized Ginger

I make a LOT of ginger ale, and the ginger I use to make it is fine, just cultured.  But, c'mon... how much cultured ginger can you use?  I am planning to try this recipe soon.  It looks easy, good, and like a good way to use up too much GINGER!

 Crystallized Ginger

Crystallized ginger is often used in baking, I have a delicious ginger cookie recipe that I add it to and is elegant on a dessert tray when dipped in dark chocolate and allowed to dry. It is delicious and healthful to add to tea, and when eaten is known to help common aliments, such as nausea, inflammation, indigestion, heartburn and pain associated with arthritis.

It can be expensive to purchase, I once saw a small 4 ounce bottle of crystallized ginger priced at $12.00 in the spice aisle at the supermarket. It is VERY inexpensive to make and takes very little time. It stores for a long time, some say up to 2 years, which makes it easy to always have on hand. Following is the recipe I use;

Peel ginger ~ removing nibs (freeze for later use in recipes) and discard any brown spots.
Slice ginger (approx 1/8 inch)
Use a fork and tenderize ginger by poking holes into each slice
Toss sliced ginger in 2 cups of sugar
Bring 1 ½ cups of water with pinch of salt to a boil
Add sugar and ginger to water
Boil until a simple syrup forms and ginger is tender, stirring often
Strain ginger and place on paper towel
Reserve ginger syrup it can be used to flavor many things including tea
Toss ginger in sugar
Allow to dry on rack for 24 hours
Store in sealed container, I will keep it this way up to 3 months, but it never lasts that long.

The House Around the Corner - Soaked Granola

Melissa's Soaked Coconut Granola
for her original story,

Our family loves granola, so I was excited to find this recipe using soaked oats. I was a bit nervous as you soak the oats for 2 days. I usually find oats to be bland tasting but with the soaking they have a better, kind of sourdough-ish taste. It ended up being delicious & has a lot less sweetener in it than the other recipe I was using. Evy likes it because the soaked oats formed little clusters so it is easy for her to snack on. Gabe has to add a few spoonfuls of sugar & then he likes it.
Soaked Coconut Granola:
8 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup melted raw butter
1/2 cup melted coconut oil or
1-1/2 cups whole yogurt
2 cups water
1/2 cup raw honey or maple syrup
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
2 cups chopped crispy nuts*
1 cup raisins

1. Mix Oats, butter, coconut oil, yogurt, and water together in a large bowl. Pat down, cover with a plate, and leave on the kitchen counter for 2 days.
2. Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
3. Place honey, salt and cinnamon in a small bowl and set in a small pot of simmering water until honey warms and becomes thin.
4. Mix honey with oat mixture.
5. Place on 2 greased cookie sheets and bake for 2-4 hours, until completely dry and crisp. When almost crisp add coconut to toast for the last hour.
6. Mix with chopped nuts and raisins. Store in airtight container.
* I used 3/4 c. sugar & 1/4 c. molasses instead of just 1/2 a cup of honey. I also had to bake mine for over 4 hours. Here is a link for making Crispy Nuts.

The House Around the Corner - Spelt Bread

Jenny's Spelt Sourdough Bread 
You can read this entire story at Jenny's
several of us in the our house have been suffering from a gluten sensitivity and i am on another mission to provide healthy food we can eat on a budget. i asked around about spelt flour, did a little internet searching, and decided that since spelt is supposed to be easier to digest than wheat and when made into sourdough bread should be even better for your body, i decided to give it a try. i wanted to buy the spelt whole grain and grind it myself, but i'm just not there yet, so i bought pre-ground flour. i also wish one day to soak the flour before baking with it, but again, i only have so many hours in the day. for now i just use it dry. baby steps, right?

anyway, i was asked to share "my" recipe by my friend cindy who is trying out any and every recipe she can find and taking tidbits from each of us and adding them to her own way of making bread. my recipe is pretty basic and not much different from the others except for the flour. 
i add these ingredients, in this order, to a warm bowl.

3/4 c starter
5 c spelt flour
about 1/4 c sweetener of choice. i'm trying to use up some sucanat. i have used honey too.
2 tsp sea salt
at this point i gently mix, by hand, the dry ingredients on top of starter before adding the water
1 1/2 c warm water
2 TBS oil

mix with your hands or a rubber spatula. the dough comes together rather quickly and i gently knead it a few times to make sure everything is mixed well, then put a damp towel over the bowl and place it in a warm place to rise. i put mine in the oven because it has a pilot light. depending on how much time i have, i let it double in size. i have also just let it rest an hour or two and then proceeded, the bread just turns out more dense. before transferring it to the baking pan, i knead it a few more times, but not too much. i read that if you overwork spelt dough your bread will be crumbly. after kneading, rub oil of your choice over the dough (i'm not sure why i do this, but i do!) and place in a baking dish. i bake my bread in a large loaf pan in an effort to have sandwich size bread for the days that my kids attend tutoring group. i let the dough rest or rise as long as my time allows. sometimes it's a few hours and sometimes it's 30 min. i'm all for making it work for me. after it's risen, place it in a 400* oven and bake until golden brown and the crust feels thick and somewhat hard to the touch. 3o min or so.

and that's it... please keep in mind all amounts and times are approximate. i just kind of add this and do that. i did jot things down as i made this loaf so i could write about it, but i like to cook more like my grandma, with a handful of this and a scoop of that. 

i'm still playing with new ideas every time i make bread, and noticing that every loaf gets easier. good luck to you!

The House Around the Corner - Arleen's House

Arleen's advice about Kefir :)

Stop whining already about the taste of the kefir (no fear - ki fear) 

morning start: 

1/4 c kefir
1/4 c juice or kvass
2 tablespoons coconut oil...

stir and drink


1 chug-a-lug and you are all done for the day. 
all you taste is what ever juice you used (carrot, beet, orange, lime)  
wipe your mouth, (don't lick your lips if you don't like coconut oil...  I don't like it at all, but don't taste it.  just the juice)

Enjoy (or something :)

A Critical Issue - pH balance

pH levels and your body
Flu Remedy #2 and 
The beginning of Phase One

First of all, my apologies for not getting this in sooner.  It is the beginning of our entire program.  When I started going through making a "Path to Progress" so it was easier to follow the basic program, there was a big hole.  Apparently the pH opinion never made it from Face Book to this blog.  I have been waiting for....... well, I don't know why I was waiting to fill in this hole.

Anyway.... the whole flu thing reminded me to do something on pH.  If you have a rotten case of the flu, you might try this old, old remedy.
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 lemon or lime
1/2 glass of water

Stir and drink
Day 1 - Use FOUR times
Day 2 - Use TWO times
Day 3 - Use ONCE

You  don't want to do this all the time and you don't want to do more than seven doses in four days.  This just chemically yanks your entire digestive tract to a neutral pH.   We can personally testify that it works for the flu.... just because virus', germs, pathogens, yeasts and other nasty stuff do not like a neutral pH.  These nasty things are weakened and you can recover.... pretty rapidly.  Not instantly.  

This step is the beginning of the program.  If you want to be reminded what Phase One is, go here.   It is safe, effective, inexpensive, easy and not completely disgusting. :)  We do pH testing using strips a couple of mornings every week and are still not at the place where our pH is neutral just from food.  We have been continuing to add this remedy in about 1-2 times per week, but hope to end it sometime.

Our 8 year old gets sips, but not full doses of this.  He really does not need it usually... his immune system is pretty strong.  He really does not like it, but I don't mind it.

Remember that you need to be responsible for the health of your family.  The intent of this blog is to implement the ideas from the Weston A. Price Foundation, Sally Fallon's Nourishing Traditions and some of the ideas from The Maker's Diet in a step by step approach.  Study one thing at a time, think about it, reason it through, talk with someone about it and come to a good, informed decision for your family.

We want a simple, nutrient dense diet that provides optimal health.  It is so hard to just shift gears mid stream.  My prayer for all of you is that some of these ideas will make sense to you and you change because of knowledge..... not just because someone had a good idea.  Baby steps, where we sift through one idea at a time, gives a little space.  Don't let anyone rush you or tell you what you should be doing in your family.  Change because you are convinced.
So..... THE EXTRA STEP - PHASE 1 - pH levels

Pick one or two articles.... read a little, think a little, pray a little.  Let all of us know how it goes.  Sharing our success and failure as a community binds us together...... no matter where we live..... on to pH

The reason you want your pH neutral is for optimal health.  If your pH is too acidic or too alkaline, your body does not function well.  It is as simple as that.  If it is too far one way, weird things can grow.  If it is too far the other way... the plumbing doesn't work well.  Your blood HAS to stay at 7.3 or 7.4.  Your body will rob from everything else to keep it there.  Don't make your body rob from your bones or organs to keep your blood neutral.   Just figure out a simple diet that works.

This first article is a good, light article on using baking soda and some of the benefits of  keeping your body at a neutral pH.  Remember, don't feel a need to buy any expensive thing anybody is selling.  A simple paper strip is sufficient for the average healthy person to keep tabs on where they are  in the pH dept.

Dr. Mercola does have an annoying pop up add if you are not on his e-mail list, but his information is so good that it is worth it to me.  He has a great web site that covers a multitude of good information, including pH and baking soda. 

This article from Dr. Mercola gives a good overview of Dr. Simoncini.  Some of the research of Dr. Simoncini has heavily influenced me.  Personally, if I had cancer anywhere from my mouth throughout my digestive tract, I would be using a baking soda therapy as part of my treatment.  If you only have time to read one article, this is a good one.

Here is a further one on baking soda and cancer if you want to continue on this vein.

And finally, here is one from a kind of odd web site.  A little out there.....  

I hope this helps you.  Some of this information is so good, and as a first step in your healthy lifestyle, this one is good.   

Be blessed and healthy

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Retracing My Steps - Ginger Ale

How Our Family Deals with the Flu

It appears to be flu season, cough, cold, yuck.  If you would like to have a simple, homeopathic remedy (remember, I am neither a doctor, a homeopath, a midwife... nothing... just opinionated :) you might add cultured ginger ale to your families life.  Purchasing ginger ale probably won't give you the benefits.  Our family always has ginger ale brewing on the counter and a ginger ale/juice mix in the fridge.

 Ginger Ale Break

To learn how to make ginger ale, go to Whey and Ginger Ale Recipes.  Remember that a good gut is your best defense against germs, pathogens, and a generally toxic world.  Ginger Ale is one of the daily things we add for continued gut health.

Why ginger ale, you ask.... well, if you look at the benefits of ginger ale, that might answer your question.  My personal opinion is that cultured ginger ale is BY FAR the most efficient way to incorporate this wonder food into your life.  It is not cooked, the enzymes are all there, it is lacto fermented, the nutrients are bio available and accessible, and you can make it taste pretty good by mixing it with a little juice (I have no hard research on this since I made it up myself... it is kind of an odd drink to get used to.)

Ginger Ale with Pomegranate Lime Juice
 If you or your family like ginger ale, you don't need to mix it with juice.  It keeps for a long, Long, LONG time if you don't mix it with juice and you throw it into the back of the fridge.  I always keep a clearly labeled bottle of it, with some of the ginger in the bottom, in the back of the fridge.... Why?  If you have a puking family member, pull out the plain ginger ale.  Give them one tablespoon, by sips, wait 10 or 20 minutes and then give them another tablespoon.  This nutralizes that yuck feeling in your throat and mouth, so have them swish it in their mouth for a bit before swallowing.

If you are pregnant, are involved with chemo, or get motion sickness, you might also give cultured ginger ale a try.  (It helps by turning off something in your brain that tells you to puke - some studies show ginger to be more effective than Dramamine for motion sickness).  Again, my opinion is that the cultured ginger ale is almost the most efficient way to get the benefits of this amazing rhizome.

There are so many benefits available.  I'll list some of the ginger ale benefits as I know them here, and some links for you to do your own due diligence.  Remember, your families health is ultimately your responsibility and  you should check out some remedies, some preventions.  Don't ever subcontract your families health to anyone... doctor, chiropractor, dentist, therapist.... or friend.


My personal list of ginger benefits: (please remember that this is not an "instant" thing... except for puking or acid reflux... we drink ginger ale every day... these are just some of the helpful things ginger can help you with over time)

  • Overall anti fungal, anti inflammatory, anti bacterial, anti everything... but in a healthy way :)
  • Stops heartburn and acid reflux
  • Digestion Aid and helps with gas and bloating
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Fever Reducer
  • Morning Sickness help (with changes in diet)
  • Mild headache remedy (I still use aspirin occasionally)
  • Energy drink (when mixed with minerals and juice)
  • Calms your nerves... a little bit :)
  • Food poisoning relief (some - a good, healthy, active gut is your best defense against food poisoning..... OK, full disclosure, we use live sauerkraut regularly to combat any food poisoning  :)
  • Menstrual Cramp relief
  • Some research shows lowered cholesterol levels (when used on a regular basis)
  • Refreshing soda type of drink... It is so good in the summer over ice!

I might revisit this page and add stuff.... I am really doing this off the top of my head and might change this page when I have a bit of time.  A little stretched in the time category this morning :)  If anyone has another remedy.... please let me know.


Don't try to go to every one of these sites.  Many of them have repetitive information.  These are just some of the ones I like really well.  I try to find ones that don't have pop up ads, but don't always catch them.

So, true confessions, ginger chews are my all time favorite candy, but I have not been able to get them :(  This is their site for health benefits and it is really good.

These sites are selling their stuff, but they have links to lots and lots of research.  I have not looked at all of it, but some of it.  I especially like the links they have on motion sickness and on cholesterol.

Here is a nice bullet point with research list and one with the nutritional breakdown

Here is a nice, short list with some research and one with the use of honey and ginger.

Anyway.... this is easy and inexpensive and a good tonic for winter.

Best of Health to you 


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The House around the corner - Kefir

 Kefir Recipes

I have had a great response to my plea for kefir recipes.  More are WELCOME (OK, I am begging... this is kind of a stretch).  Check back and I will add them on here as they come in.  If you would like to revisit the kefir directions, they are here.

Kefir is a type of yogurt made with "beads"  Arleen and I both have some and will share, if you are local.  (mine are from Arleen who has been a believer in kefir for a couple of years now).

Why would anyone use kefir?  A couple of reasons... one) to preserve your expensive raw milk, and 2) for the wonderful properties it brings to your gut and 3) Arleen uses it to culture her regular organic milk (not raw) to incorporate the live enzymes back into the milk.  This notches up the nutritional value.

Kefir is full of the stuff you need to work on your healthy gut flora.  It is so important to have a large variety of lacto fermented foods in your daily diet - milks, root vegetables and vegetables.  This is another one to add to the mix, and it is a good one.  Kefir beads are unique things they are unable to make in a lab.  They have been around for a long, long time.  The Kefir story is interesting, and you should read it some time.  This one is kind of cute.

Sadly, it is apparently an acquired taste... better to be acquired early in life.  However, that does not mean we cannot take advantage of the health benefits without sending our taste buds to the curl up place.  Here are a couple of articles which should be read... I think they are short.  Remember, you should have some knowledge of why you are doing what you are doing.  Don't overwhelm yourself, just set yourself the task of acquiring some knowledge.

This one has a pop up add, but if you close it, it has a nice list of benefits.
Kefir Benefits

Last, but not least, while I was schlepping around the internet looking for the kefir story in a readable format, I came across this on young, green coconut kefir.  Someone else will have to try it.  I am at my limit for trying new kefir products :)

Now for some recipes (not for the coconut stuff - never heard of it before today):

From Melissa:
Besides smoothies, many times after lunch, Evy & I will mix up "a little kifer drink" as we like to call it.

1/2 c. chilled kifer each
dash or vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, alspice or whatever you have.
1 tsp sweetener (Since honey is thick & does not mix well with cold things, I premix a jar of 3/4 honey to 1/4 water & shake until combined. You can then pour it & it mixes nicely.)
It's a nice dessert-ish snack after lunch.

Another way I sneak it in is:

Winter Salsa

2 c. shopped green cabbage
1/2 c. chopped cillantro
4-5 chopped canned jalapenos
1/2 c. vinigar from canned jalapenos
2 tbsp kifer
2 tbsp sour cream
salt & pepper to taste
From Jamie:
In a blender mix:

1/2 cup kefir
1 cup yogurt
cinnamon, nutmeg, a pinch of salt, some vanilla
frozen berries
a banana - frozen or not

Blend and drink.  The spices will kill some of the taste. 

Note.... Jamie has also made some kefir cheese and made a quiche out of it.  She also suggested adding it to your sourdough sponge.  I did and it was good.  I have not had time to try the cheese yet, but look forward to a recipe hitting my inbox with pictures :)

From Chara:

I put my kefir together in the evening, let it sit overnight and in the morning throw it into a smoothie with whatever I have in the house... This morning it was bananas, kefir, raw milk, a few liquid supplements and a maple yogurt. I use coconut milk, all different kinds of fruit (whatever is in the fridge), yogurts- plain, vanilla, maple, mostly I use kefir in smoothies...
From Jamie:

Breakfast Pie or Quiche if you skip the potato crust and just use a regular pie crust.
For the crust you'll need:
3 potatoes
2 tablespoons self-rising flour
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon red and black pepper blend
For the filling you'll need:
6 strips good smoked bacon, cooked crisp and chopped
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
1 cup grated cheese
6 eggs
1/2 cup kefir
1 clove garlic minced
1/4 teaspoon red and black pepper blend
pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 350
Grate the potatoes into a colander and rinse thoroughly with cold water, set aside to drain.  Beat one egg well with onion powder and pepper blend.  Heat a 10 inch cast iron skillet over medium high heat until pan is hot.  Use whatever oil you prefer, I used olive oil.  Toss grated potatoes with two tablespoons self-rising flour.  Mix floured potatoes with egg mixture thoroughly and place in hot skillet making sure to cover the bottom evenly and push the potato mixture to the edges of the pan and almost two inches up the side.  Lower heat to medium.  Don't turn the potatoes, you're only trying to get the bottom good and browned.  Shouldn't take but maybe 10 minutes tops depending on whether or not you use gas or electric stove.  Once potatoes have browned remove from heat.
Blend six eggs with kefir then add remaining ingredients.  Pour into potato crust in  cast iron skillet and put into preheated oven for approximately 20 minutes.  If it doesn't look pretty enough for you sprinkle some grated cheese over the top and run under the broiler for a couple minutes.
There you go, a meal in one pan.

More to follow......

The House Around the Corner - Success Stories

Some Stories Shared

We had a great day yesterday with the sourdough class.  Sampling lots of different kinds of bread as everyone develops their recipes is something to look forward to.  It is so fun to see each bread recipe "tweeked" to fit the house that it is being made in.

Really, what is sourdough bread?  Starter, flour, salt, oil and a little sweetner.  You can add other things, change the process, shape it to suit you, sour it to suit your families taste and learn to appreciate an art from yesteryear. 

Ultimately, we are a community, sharing ideas.  Our community is comprised of strangers and friends, old and young, and every spectrum of world views you could ever hope to find.  I love it :)  The stories, ideas and tips on sourdough bread that have been coming in are helpful, encouraging and all sound so good.  This page is listing out some of the stories. 

I have lost the wonderful sourdough cinnamon roll recipe Becky sent me, but she is sweet and will probably just send it again.  The rolls were a lot better than my first try.  Mine had the consistency of... I don't know... a brick?  They were OK dipped in coffee.  One of Becky's got hidden to have with a cup of coffee at choir practice.  So good Becky.

My friend Sherri has sent in not just a recipe, but a history of sourdough starter and some of her memories.  It can be found on her blog.  She has lots of other ideas from another era.  She loves to study how things were done in another age.  I think you will enjoy her story.  It is refreshing to go visit her "keeping room"

Vanessa made her first batch of sourdough bread, and some butter with it.  What is so fun is that she used Bobbi's recipe and pictures as her guide.  I still need to try the egg wash.

Melissa is now an old hand at sprouting wheat, making bread and coming up with clever, non-plastic storage ideas.  She is also trying the butter.  She shared her pictures and knowledge here recently.  She is in the middle of the butter adventure.  

Finally, Jamie has been sending in a lot of good ideas, pictures and clear directions.  She is a wonderful researcher and writer and has been trying so many ideas, writing about them and getting them to me.  Hopefully she will just fire up her own blog soon.  Gotta do it Jamie! (Why don't you already have one?)

Our church community has been trying hard to change a lot of our old habits.  Pot lucks now have a lot of nutrient dense foods there.  We are doing a meal tonight for the young couple's group of a very dense soup (chicken, rice, quinoa, veggies and broth), salad and sourdough bread...oh, and latte's made with some really good milk.  I will take pictures and post them soon.  It should be another fun evening.

Be blessed and healthy.  Make wise choices for your family.  Is there one change you can make today?