A Bun In The Oven!

Literally a Bun in the Oven! Haha! I am talking about an awesome artisan bread baking in the oven. So yummy! I was chatting it up with Cody’s cousin’s cute wife, Jinger and she was interested in my whole food approach that I am trying to implement on our homestead. Basically I try to not have processed junk in the house. I make lots of things from scratch. This includes bread. I found an awesome no-knead artisan bread on Theitaliandishblog.com that I love. I also make honey whole wheat and french bread. I’ll post those recipes eventually.This recipe is so great because you mix everything together and then you can stick it in the fridge and just take out a bit of dough when you want a fresh loaf of bread.

 

This is what you need:

  • 3 cups lukewarm water
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons granulated fast acting (instant) yeast (Iuse SAF yeast)
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons kosher or other coarse salt
  • 6-1/2 cups unsifted, unbleached all purpose white flour ( I substituted 2 of the cups for wheat flour.. still amazing)

Just mix it all together, cover it loosely and then let it rise for 2 hours on the counter.  Then you can cut off a chunk and let it sit on your pan  for a half hour or toss it in the fridge.  You can let it sit in the fridge for a couple of days and just pull out what you need whenever. The longer it sits in the fridge, the more it takes on a sourdough taste.   Which is awesome because I can never get sourdough to work for me.  It can stay in there for up to 14 days.   Again, just let it sit for a half hour and then bake. Oh, and make sure you take a sharp knife and put some little slices in the top.  It helps release gases while rising, and it makes you look like a pro!

When you bake it, fill up a pan of water and put it on the bottom rack of your oven.  This will give your bread that thick crusty crust.  Yumm!

Put your pan of water in and then bake at 450 degrees for 30 – 35 minutes.  Or until you have a gorgeous golden brown loaf.  The website I got it from says that it makes four, 1 pound loaves.  But I usually make two, 2 pound loaves because I have super hungry kiddos.

Unfortunately I forgot to take pictures of my beautiful loaf before half of it got devoured.  Oops!  It was soooo good though and it made the house smell amazing.  So, I dare you to try this recipe!  Your family will thank you for it!

I Feel Manly Today

You know, there are certain days that I don’t feel too manly but today is not one of them. Over the last couple of years we’ve added several new animals to our collection but all of them could be together and enjoy each other’s company quite freely. With the addition of our little Puck the goat, we no longer could let all of them join in the fun on our wonderful farm. Puck had to stay away from the pigmy goats or they would die horrible miserable deaths during pregnancy because his offspring are too big for the little bodies of the pygmies. So to protect unwanted deaths and pregnancies, we created a second pen. The pygmies and sheep still could use the shelter in the other pen.

That worked fine until we got our new Leila goat. She is supposed to eat the real good hay so her milk doesn’t taste like weeds but we didn’t want the pygmies to eat the expensive hay. Thus we needed another separation. We decided we’d keep Leila in the pen by the shed and the sheep and pygmies could stay in the pasture. The only problem was that they didn’t have any shelter out there. A wet goat is not a happy goat. A wet cold goat is a dead goat (pneumonia). We found a guy that had pallets on KSL for a dollar piece and he had four of them that were 6 feet long instead of the typical 4 feet. We put three of the six foot pallets together as the the sides of the shelter and used a four foot one for the front. Put some plywood on the top and voila, a pretty cheap shelter. It’s nice to be able to put something together like this. I’m not super skilled in wood work but this I can do.

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Love My Hot Stuff

I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking that this post is about my smokin’ wife but sadly it is not. She is most definitely my hot stuff but I’m referring to something not as hot, those beautiful peppers. I absolutely love spicy food.

We were at my in-laws’ house last weekend for a birthday party and someone brought some fresh salsa. I was way excited and then my father-in-law stated that the salsa was probably not the type of salsa I would enjoy. I thought, “Hey it’s salsa, it’s got to be good.” But I was wrong, the “salsa” was basically pureed tomatoes  and poured into a bowl. So disappointing…..

The above picture is some of our blessed crop from the garden. For some reason we only had a couple of plants survive this year which is very disappointing compared to last year. We had enough peppers to do two batches of salsa and for a whopping TWO bottles of canned jalapeños. I almost don’t want to open these bottles because I think they look awesome. There is something just super satisfying about growing and canning your own crop. You can see these beauties in the below picture, I think they look lonely.  Necesito mas.

 

Our Apple Tree

We were very excited two years ago to plant our very first fruit tree. It was an apple that had five different apple varieties grafted into the tree. Unfortunately we happen to have very “hungry” pigmy goats that like apple tree leaves and limbs. They got loose one day and reduced the five variety apple tree to a three variety apple tree.

We were a little disappointed last summer to only see flowers bloom but no fruit. So this year we were super excited to see five apples emerge from the blooms. But again due to the Pygmy Twins and wind, our bountiful crop was reduced to two apples. They look very delicious and we cannot wait to give them a try. We’re hoping next year we’ll do better about keeping our naughty little goats away and receiving a bit larger crop.